Friday, July 1, 2011

The Road to my First IM..........Part 3

2 July 2011-

As I sit here in the hotel the day before my first IM I figured I better finish up this series that I started. If this is the first post that you have stumbled across check out Part 1 and Part 2 first. It has been interesting to reflect back on things and I have really enjoyed thinking about everything and looking back through some old photos. So here we go on the final portion of this............

I departed Turkey the end of August and found myself back in South Korea. I was pretty happy with this move as I was familiar with Korea and knew that the racing scene was a lot better than Turkey. Luckily I had already been here before and knew my way around logistically and already had some in's into the local tri scene. I would say I hit the ground running as in the first 9 weeks there I raced 8 of those weekend. It was not the brightest idea on my part as I had the big marathon coming up, but I raced some of the races a little smarter than the others and in the end it all worked out. Could the marathon of went better? Who knows, but I sure enjoyed the journey that took me up to that race.

I went into the marathon wanting to break 3 hours. That was the big goal of last year was running a sub-3 marathon. I had some great indicators going into the race with a 1:18:55 half marathon and then averaging 2:48 for 10X800's, AKA the "Yasso 800's". Well I am not sure if it was all of the racing or the tough course, but I didn't quite hit the low 2:50's that I was aiming for but still managed the sub-3, so the big goal from 2010 was completed. Where do you go from there? It was a late season marathon so I took about 2 weeks off and then the real journey began.
During the Chuncheon Marathon!

Yes, believe it or not I have been training for my first IRONMAN since beginning of December. I made the plunge and went full board ahead into this big race. I started out by seeking out a coach, and ended up going with Team TBB Online Coaching, and went with Scott DeFilippis. Having a coach has been awesome, it is great to have someone to hold you accountable and watch your training. I have been around for a short 3 years, so I have a brief idea of "what to do", but going into my first IM I didn't want any excuses. We have really made some great progress with my swim and bike, and well my run has stayed the same but has become really good off the bike. It has been awesome to have structured plan that every workout has a purpose and everything builds into something bigger. I use to just go out and swim, bike and run without much focus, other than my run workouts. Now everything has been very structured and it has made things really focused and with a purpose. I also purchased an SRM (power meter for the bike), and that has also been a great training tool that has helped my cycling fitness and power.

So this year I have cut back on the racing and stayed focused on IM China, well now IM Korea. I had some great adventures along the way, traveling to Singapore, around Korea for a few races and then of course the Tour de Korea. The TDK was probably the highlight of the year thus far, but all of that could change tomorrow.

Suffering in the brutal humidity of Singapore.......Team Storck/Rapha during the TDK.........

These last 10 months have been an amazing journey and there have been some great friends that I have met along the way.

Zach/Aaron- Thanks for always coming out and riding even on some of the craziest days. You guys have been a key reason why my cycling fitness has taken off. Can't thank you enough for all you guys have done for me and helped me progress as an athlete.

Dave- Meeting you within the first 48 hours on base was awesome! Can't say I have ever met another triathlete so quick on a new base. Best of luck to you tomorrow!

Des- Once again we cross paths and you are always around to help out with the little logistical ins and odds throughout Korea. Thanks again for all of the help you have provided me along this journey.

Team Storck/Rapha- Pablo, Jeremy, and all the guys on the team, thanks for the opportunity to ride the TDK with you guys. I know it was probably a headache having a triathlete on the team, but man was the TDK a blast. Can't wait till next year, it is going to be a blast!

Traci- Life is not complete without a swimming partner, hahaha......Actually I think that is true because once you got deployed going to the pool really sucked. It was always good to continously get my butt kicked by you and have some great swim sets! Thanks for all your help, I would say you are one of the reasons I am slowly becoming a "swimmer".

John- The TDK was a blast and having someone like you to mentor me through the process was great. Thanks for coming down here to Jeju to help me out. Makes a huge difference to actually have someone here supporting.(John came down from Seoul to hang out and "vacation", he is going to hopefully be able to give me some splits along the course and be able to tell me to HTFU and push it when the going gets tough.)

Pyeongtaek Tri Club- Once again you guys have been a huge help. I don't know to many people that will load up a foreigner and give them a lift all the way back to base from down in far south korea. You guys are truly amazing and some great people. Best of luck to those of you that are racing this weekend, Mr. Yu go and get your VEGAS SLOT!

Work/Chain of Command- It is always great to have the support of the higher ups. They have given me the opportunity and supported me with my racing. Without their support I would not have been able to take part in the TDK or receive PTDY for this race. Thanks for supporting me in my athletic endeavors.

Family- As the journey along this crazy lifestyle that I live continues, tomorrow is a big day. I thank each and every one of you, without you I don't know if I would be where I am today. THANK!

Bryan, Steve, Maddy, Mom and Me a few weeks ago at the Silicon Valley Race.Brenda, me and Dad at the Silicon Valley Race

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