Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Heating UP!

Check out this picture of MJ in NBA JAMS (arguably the best game of our generation)

I can basically hear the velvety baritone of the announcer bellowing, "He's HEATING UP!!"

Currently this applies to both my environment and my training. Let me explain:

1. Calabasas is going through a ridiculous heat wave... It hit 113 degrees yesterday. To further clarify, 113 is the temperature where your eyeballs start getting hot. I was biking down a hill and the wind hitting my face literally was warming up my eyeballs in their sockets. Thankfully, my commute is about 20 minutes so I took the actual workout inside on my powerbeam pro trainer. My eyeballs didn't get a chance to turn to eye gu but I am convinced they were close to the eyeball melting point.

2. My training is heating up in the same way MJ was. The main stuff is going really well. This last weekend I hit a race simulation workout on Saturday. 75 miles of riding and 7.5 miles of running. The 75 mile ride started out under control but fast. I hit the turn around only to see one of the members of Erin Baker's triathlon team. Just when I was thinking, " you are about to be shot out the back, Hombre," he blew by me like I was on a tandem tricycle with a freeloading presubway Jared on the back. Not so fast. I started giving it a bit of juice and he let off the gas and I was on him again. We rode the next 20 miles with a bit of a tailwind at 25+ mph. Too hard for ironman but I wanted to see if getting out of my zone would make me blow up and how fast.

I left him at mile 40 of my ride and settled back into my pace with a massive wind right in my face. I was through mile 56 @ 23.2 mph. My front tire flatted shortly after that and a quick fix later, I rode in to start my run... I changed, loaded up with water and set out. The first 5k felt good and was at 7:24 pace. I backed off a bit after loading up on water and the next 4k was a bit slower. I finished the run @ about 7:05-7:10 pace with a total average of 7:27 pace for 7.5 miles. No blow up despite getting carried away on the bike.

Overall stats 22.6 mph for the bike with a good portion into major headwinds, 7:27's for the run in the proper zone. He's heating up!

Stay tuned for a bigger workout this Saturday.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

RETULing my bike

This season I have vowed to not cut any corners in my Ironman preparation. I have got the nutrition gear I need to fuel properly, I have bought new racing tires, a Specialized TT2 aero helmet, and I also invested in a bike fit.

I have been thinking about a fitting for a while now, despite having reasonable success fitting myself. I just felt I needed it to be spot on. A lot of fitters just eyeball it with a static fit. Essentially, as you go through your pedal stroke, they stop you at different intervals and look at the angles your body is making. It is good, but it is still cutting a corner. Biking is a dynamic motion so to truly get a proper fit, it should be a dynamic fitting. Basically this means the angles are measured as you are pedaling.

I figured a static fit was something I could do myself. I needed the best dynamic fit that I could find.

This is where
Retul comes in. It is a company based in Boulder that is making noise in the tri industry and fitting a ton of pros. Retul is a bike fitting system that incorporates three-dimensional motion ca
pture technology to provide what they claim is an incredibly accurate dynamic fitting solution. In theory, the result is that the rider will have a true fit to his or her bike, maximizing efficiency and performance while avoiding discomfort or injury. Sound good? It did to me but I was skeptical.

I set about looking for a Retul fitter in my area. Luckily my favorite shop, Win’s wheels, offered Retul. Win’s wheels is an amazing shop with phenomenal mechanics who don’t miss a thing. They have done everything for me from gluing tubulars to total drive train overhauls. I love the work they do so I was thrilled that they offered what I was looking for.

I set up a time and went in. Win’s wheels has an agreement with Franco Bicycles, a shop in Malibu, to bring Julian, a certified Retul fitter, in. We talked for a bit and then I hopped on his Cycleops Powerbeam. I warmed up at 180 watts, dialed in by the trainer. He had set up 8 sensors on my body that measure points in 3-dimensions and set about examining the numbers as I pedaled. After talking about it, we made some significant changes. My seat went up, my aerobars were swapped out, and my stem came in. My hip angle was the major difference. I initially felt super open and could breath with ease. I was still skeptical as I felt like a sail being so high in the air.

The truth would be told out on the roads. To date it has been about a month of putting the fit through the motions. Immediately I noticed more glute activation and felt super smooth, and powerful. I was very comfortable. It was an incredible night and day feeling. My eyeball fit wasn’t bad, but the
Retul fit was mind-blowing. I wondered if it would translate to speed… My thought was it may have compromised some aerodynamics which I wasn’t too pleased about.

I did a few TT’s and, to my surprise, things were looking good but only racing matters.

I recently raced Rev3 and when I hopped on my bike, I felt like I was floating. The speed was coming! I biked my way from 5 minutes back in wave 2 to the front of the race. I couldn’t believe it. I had the 2nd fastest bike split, only back by 3 seconds to a guy who biked 4:45 at Ironman Florida! The crazy thing was how easy it was. The effort was SUPER controlled and I felt smooth and efficient the whole day. I guess this Retul thing works! If you spend 2 grand on a bike, spend another couple hundred and make that thing work for you. It is totally worth it. Don’t cut corners!

The new position at Rev3 Cedar Point!

HELP! I've got the sniffles!!!!!!


After a completely clean year (aside from Dengue fever and massive food poisoning early in the year) I am getting a bit of a scratchy throat. Couldn’t come at a worse time as I am starting my last massive training block before Florida. It is one of those colds that kind of saps your energy but not enough to really do damage. To illustrate, I just did a 16.5 mile run with no ill effects.

You’re probably saying, “ HOLY CRAP… I am totally in panic mode!!! LOL. What if this wrecks his totally awesome prep for Florida. He’s my hero and I can’t see him like this!!!!!! L”

Settle down, bloggers. No worries cuz I am all over it like Lindsey Lohan over a little bag of cocaine or Lady Gaga over some tasteless and offensive outfit. Here are my methods-

Mainlining pure cranberry juice and tea
Miso Soup
Popping B and C vitamins like Jan Ullrich pops ecstasy or m&m’s

This is an EMERGEN-C so I am reaching out to you, Bloggers. In your infinite wisdom, what do you do for colds? It needs to be fool-proof. COMMENT PLEASE!

Saturday, September 18, 2010


Just got back from a 120 mile ride. I am swollen and my glutes are smoked.

The goal was essentially to do it just like the ironman... Same nutrition, same pace or harder. I knew it was going to be a monster. I immediately got into my 112 mile "set".
The course was moderately hilly with some decent climbs and the wind picked up just when I really needed it to. Mile 85... how nice. My buddies, Tony and Brett joined me but I was adamant about not drafting... or at least not for me.

Either way, I split 4:54 for 112 honest miles. When I say honest, I mean it was not a course giving away speed. You had to take it. It broke down to a 22.9 mph average. I turned myself out to do it. Mile 85-98 were right into the teeth of a 20-25 mph wind. I nearly threw up half from sweets half from taking it to the well... I was in a dark place then I hit the turn around and the last 14 miles were with the sweet sweet wind. I hammered it home... still in the hurt box but finished strong.

4:54. Wow. And yet training continues...

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Rev 3 Correction!

They adjusted the results to what I thought. My final time was 4:26 with a 28 minute swim, 2:21 bike, and 1:33 run!

For some reason a 4:26 is way more satisfying than a 4:27. Especially on a super windy day.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Rev3 Race Report

Epic Weekend Part II: The race

I woke up feeling pretty good. The wind was 14-17 mph. Huge. The temp was perfect.

Swim was a point to point in Lake Eerie. We got going on the beach start and I was moving ok and feeling pretty comfortable. No chop but a strong current coming back into shore slowed the times down… Finished in 29 min and well positioned (Not fast but it was a strong swim in tough conditions)

I was filmed in transition. The guy ran up to me as I was dropping f bombs and struggling with my wetsuit. I tried to stifle the profanities to no avail. I have a sailor's mouth.

Shitty transition and I was off on my bike with my new race tires and slipperly specialized TT2 aero helmet. I took off like a bat out of hell and within minutes saw evotri teammate, Chris Sweet. He is an awesome athlete, so I knew I was having one of those days where things are firing on all cylinders. I was grinding the pedals in a massive gear but feeling super smooth and sort of floating. I smashed through the bike, despite pretty beefy winds and finished with the second fastest split about 3 seconds back of the fastest…I literally biked through field by mile 40. The guy with the fastest split passed me back and smashed the last 10 miles into a stiff headwind to earn the top split honors. Mad props to Alex Gonzalez. I got off the bike with an honest 2:21 (Awesome split given the wind and the placing).

I was in 2nd coming into T2 and down by no more than 30 seconds to Alex, who technically was 5 minutes back as he was in the 1st wave. I ripped through T2 and settled into a comfortable run pace. By mile 1, I was leading the race again! Short lived as about 2 minutes later Brian Kaminski moved by me pretty quick. He ran away with the race big time clicking off 6 minute miles easily. I was chipping through the miles pretty well and feeling comfortable…the crowds were amazing and kept me smiling. By mile 4, a young kid from the Canadian development squad ran through me… Great, I thought, now I am gonna slide back through the field. He put 30 seconds into me and I thought I would never see him again. I turned a corner at mile six only to see him walking. No nutrition, no water on him. Inexperienced Cannuck athlete but definitely strong. I figured I just needed to hang around until mile 9 and see what was what. He took several walk breaks and I chipped into his lead. I had accumulated some lady admirers on the run as the run weaved through town and they were encouraging me to hunt him down. It was America vs. Canada in the ultimate grudge match. President Obama was at an aid station, screaming expletives and spittling all over the place. Inspiring stuff. By mile 8, I was on his back. We stopped at an aid station and then started the duel. Toby Keith was belting out I love America ballads and losing his mind as I jumped off the front and blasted the next mile at 6:10. I looked back and he was gone!! I repassed!!!!! I took a piece of apple pie covered in melted American cheese at the next aid station but that mile had taken it out of me big time and I had slacked on drinking. I suffered back to the finish line but held a solid pace of 7 flat. I actually negative split the thing somehow. Victory for America, eh. Run: 1:33 for a 7:06 pace. Not great but felt really easy and ran smart...I had a ton left in the tank so I'm looking forward to doing another half distance race to really push the half marathon.

I finished in SECOND OVERALL in a legit 4:27! (might have been 4:26 as I think the timing was a bit off) Either way it is a PR in very windy conditions. The whole team was awesome. Charlie, his wife Lisa and the Sarahs were awesome out there and rolled through the race like it was pie. Robbie B led the whole race out of the water and finished strong. Chris Sweet, despite minimal training, absolutely smashed the race and ran through the field on the run to finish 5th! Absolutely ridiculous. Michele showed serious class and is going to tear up Kona. Team Evotri represented big time with a bunch of PRs and killing it overall. Also, Simply SSSSStuuu announced the race as master of ceremonies. He is amazing and I just love this team.

It was surreal coming down the finish line in probably my best result in a big race. I was praying the whole day and God answered my prayers letting me race to my fitness and stay strong and smart the whole day. I am so grateful to the people in my life who help me do this sport. My family, friends, and teammates allow me to have unbelievable experiences like this that just make me so incredibly happy. But the biggest thanks goes to Caitlin. She is the love of my life and keeps me honest in training. She bikes with me on my long runs, supports unwaveringly, and is all around my best thing going. After the race, I talked to her, my best friend, Matt Inch, and my Mom and I was just over the moon to tell them how it went. It was one of those days.

Monday, September 13, 2010

You want a Revolution?

Epic Weekend Part 1 (of 3): The team

The weekend agenda was the evotri team race: Rev 3 Cedar Point. I was pretty pumped about this race because I got to meet up with the team and because the Rev 3 series is KILLING it right now. The venues, the atmosphere, the coverage, and the athlete treatment are destroying WTC. If you haven’t done one, get on it. They are stellar. "They have a real solution to bleeping M dot price inflation and pro abuse... if you'd love to see the plan you can at Rev3tri.com."- John Lennon

I got into Sandusky and immediately took a quick run… Proved to be pretty eventful as I was in the projects and didn’t have access to the standard running garb so I was shirtless and in compression tights. Needless to say it was a spectacle. I ran by a guy who was dropping the eff bomb on the phone like crazy… as I ran by his jaw dropped and the eff bombs ceased entirely.

"Imagine all the people in the slums of Cleveland, running around in stupid tights, living for today."- John Lennon

After that, I met up with the team for some beer and food in Cleveland. We then headed to Cedar Point for some mildly drunken roller coaster rides.

The park was shut down which was ridiculous. We ran from coaster to coaster and basically road until we were sick. Highlights of the park were riding in the front of the top thrill dragster with Robbie B and riding next to Michele on the Maverick and watching her nearly boot all over the back of Robbie’s seat. To her credit, she kept the unholy slurry of mushroom and sausage pizza and several heavy beers down.

"What on earth you tryin' to do? Eatin' sausage pizza, drinkin' beers, ridin' coasters? Instant Karma's gonna get you."- you get it.

The next day was pretty standard pre race stuff except the last part. I capped the night off with Chris Sweet and Laura from Team Trakkers. They were wandering in our hotel and saw a giant Linus (from peanuts) mascot dancing in a club with strobe lights going off. He was dancing alone so we joined him for the electric slide, the sprinkler, and other similar pseudo dancing. There was a family with two 6-8 yr old girls. We were going balls out on the dance floor and the Linus mascot was dancing as well as a person can in a giant foam suite with barely any ventilation. Very weird.

"And Jet, I thought the Major was a Lady Suffragette. JET! JET!"- Paul McCartney (off topic for this blog and who knows what the hell he is talking about, but Paul was a hard drug user, raging lunatic, and couldn't focus to save his life)

Realistically, the title of worst, most useless Beatle is one that Ringo will hold forever, but Sir Paul is a close second.


Thursday, September 9, 2010

Ride, Recover, Race Rev3

So on Saturday, I had planned a big brick to cap off a 2 1/2 week training block. I talked to my boy, David Quiros (UCLA triathlon club President and general beast of a triathlete). He was game to join me which I was super pumped about. After climbing through the canyon, I met up with him and headed up PCH. I wanted to get into IM pacing quickly so we started moving well.

The conditions were pretty great and we were smacking it into a headwind. Low HR and a 22.8 mph average for a comfortable effort. We turned around and cruised at 23.2 mph average back. Really solid pace given about an average HR of 138 or so. I left DQ and headed back through the canyons back home. Hoping I can train with him more as he is good company. Anyway, heading back home, I was greeted by a 103 degree hot box in place of Calabasas. It was like biking through the pits of hell or a really warm Cincinatti. Turns out, a bottle and half of water lasts about 10 minutes in hell/ Cinci. I suffered back and decided to cut the run... I was pissed as I was feeling spritely and ready to get into it...but 103 is something I am not uber thrilled about. Maybe if I was training for Kona.

Recovery from that ride was quick, but once I got into real recovery mode I realized the block of training had taken me deeper than I thought. Legs felt like acid and mac n cheese and lungs struggled to get working on easy days. I have finally come around and I am feeling ready to race. I am getting used to how long it takes to truly recover from big IM blocks. My biggest one is coming up and I am pumped to get into it. But right now, I am really only looking at this weekend.

Half Ironman @ Rev3 in cedar point. With the evotri team!