Tuesday, November 24, 2009

2009 is Over :( :(

24Nov09- Incirlik AB Turkey-

Well my season has officially come to an end :( I have ran a few miles since getting back from Florida but I wouldn't really call it running. It has just been for PT(Physical Training) for the class I am in right now. So it has been really low key and not asking to much of my body. Well where do I start...........It has been a heck of a year.......

It was only my second year into Tri/Running and it well with everything in life there is HIGHS and LOWS. This season I had all of that and some, but learned a lot more from the lows than the highs. To recap some of the highs: Qualified for IM 70.3 World Championships in China, Won a few local Tri's on military bases, Won some huge awards in the military and then to the lows........2nd degree burns from IM 70.3 China and a broken right radial in IM 70.3 Germany. The sun burn taught me that sunscreen is very important and well the broken bone taught me that riding on a flat 8 mile loop will not prepare anyone for descending down hills and through corners!

This year I tried to train and race a lot smarter than last year and I think I achieved that. I did however run a marathon on very little training, which I had done last year. That was the one DUMB thing that I did repeat and do again, but I think I have learned my lesson about that. Recovery is 100% harder when you have not properly trained for a race and the body takes a real beating.

Once again this season would not have been possible without some key people: My Family has been great and has supported me 110% this year which has been great, then comes all the friends: Mark, well this year would have not been as great if you would not have shown up to Korea and pushed me through the last couple cold months. Funny thing is out of the whole year Feb/Mar were my biggest training months. Des- Well once again having you as a logistics guy for my last couple months in Korea was awesome! Best of luck in your first IM, go get em in IM Western Australia!! OC- WILDFLOWER WILDFLOWER WILDFLOWER, need I say more. We made the first BBBC reunion a success because we had a reunion, so hopefully this year it grows and it continues to get bigger. All my fellow competitors and fellow triathletes that I have met this year, THANKS for pushing me at all the races around the globe. The best thing about Triathlon is the great athletes and people in the sport, they are the ones that make it awesome!

THANKS AGAIN to everyone that has helped me through this season and HAPPY T-DAY/MERRY X-MAS/HAPPY NEW YEAR to ALL!!

Well 2009 comes to a close and below are two pics off my race results and statistics from the season. I have also put some pics below to recap the HIGHS and the LOWS of the season..........
Click Picture to Enlarge
Click Picture to Enlarge
The Good!
More Good!
The Bad!!
The Ugly!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Race Day in FL- World Championships

14 Nov- Clearwater Beach FL-

Well today was the big day and my last triathlon of the 2009 season. Wow what a year it has been, the year recap will come in a week or two. So the day started out bright and early at 445am with the usual routine. Had a bowl of oatmeal and a cup of coffee and sure enough it took care of the morning business. This year I have been 3 for 3 on taking care of things pre race and not having to stop during the race. It turned out to be a beautiful morning and the weather had really calmed down compared to earlier in the week. Since I was starting in the last wave I took my time to get down to transition area and get the bike setup. So after getting the bike setup myself and my mom headed down to the swim start and was able to catch the pros start, which was really cool.

Once the pros went off we just hung around and watched Eric, Petra, and Gary head out for their swim then I started to get ready. The start was supposed to be a swimmer in the water one after another and then a break in between each wave. Well the start didn’t go as planned and they just kept feeding people into the water so instead of having 1800 people on the course over an hour we were all in the water in 25 minutes. Well what that does is create some big packs on the bike course and a lot of drafting.

Swim- The swim went as expected considering the fact that I have not been able to get in the pool since it closed. Also with the crash in Germany I was not able to swim for 6 weeks. So I expected to swim around 34-37 minutes and sure enough I came out at 35 minutes. The swim course was great minus the first portion due to the fact that it was right into the sun. At the first turn buoy I felt the ground on my swim stroke and was able to stand up which was really weird out in the middle of the harbor.

T1- I felt like I had a great transition and felt really quick. The volunteers were great and really helpful at getting my wetsuit off quickly.

Bike- WOW is all I have to say. I knew the bike would be super fast and had heard that there would be a lot of drafting. Surprisingly through the first 15 miles I thought it was going to be a clean race. I was with a guy for the first 15 miles and we were pacing off of each other and were within a legal distance. At the first U turn onto the freeway I look back and see a pack of about 20 riders 200 meters behind me. So I knew it was going to start happening sooner or later so I slowed up and joined the group. This is when the fun began. For about the first 8 miles the group really didn’t want to push the pace but after that the group got frisky and we took off. Most of the time I would look down and we were above 25mph, at some points we were “cruising” at 30mph. At mile 45 a race marshal finally came along and broke up our group, but by this time it was so narrow on the road that it was hard not to stay in a pack. Overall I felt really strong on the bike and felt like I contributed to our group and helped to push the pace. This might not of been the smartest thing since I beat my legs up pretty good pushing the pace but at least we hammered out a good bike.

T2- Once again I had a quick transition but it would have been about 30 seconds faster if I would not have stopped to pee. I made sure to hydrate well on the bike since it was hot out and was producing quite a bit of sweat and salt.

Run- Well this is where things did not go as planned. I came into the race hoping to run 1:35 but knew it would be hard after an extremely fast and hard paced bike. The other down fall to the run course was that we had to cross a big bridge 4 times and it was steep! So the bridge really took a lot out of my legs the first two times and by the last time just shuffled up the bridge instead of attempting to run. So I came in a little off my goal but was overall very pleased with my run.

Overall I had a great race and was very happy with the results. Only being at the end of my second season and too of just competed in the World Championships makes me feel really good and happy with the success so far. This race was really just to see where I stand in the big scheme of things with a lot of great athletes to compete against. Now that my season is pretty much over it is time to relax and let the body rest from the long season.


Swim- 35:44 1025th/1652

T1- 3:11

Bike- 2:16:32 551st/1652

T2- 3:15

Run- 1:40:46 714th/1652

Total Time- 4:39:26

Age Group placing- 37th/55

Overall Placing- 697th/1652

I also just competed in a Track meet here on base on Wednesday the 18th. I made sure to recover quickly so that I could try and run a good race against some of the local runners on base. I took an Ice bath right after the race in FL and then got a massage on Tuesday. My legs felt decent considering how hard I pushed on Saturday. Coming up to the line of the track meet I did not think many people would run the mile, it was a pretty small race. Well a lot of people decided to run the mile and I thought I might have had to run hard. I took off out the gate and pushed pretty hard. I stayed in the lead the whole time and out ran 12 other guys and won the mile with a 5:30 mile. Just a small race but it felt good to run a 5:30 4 days after a big race. Now I am on complete recovery for 6 weeks and just started Airman Leadership School, so I really don’t have time to train. We have to do some physical activity 2-3 times a week but it is very minimal.

The harbor that we swam in. Off to the right you can see the start of the pro wave.

Myself and Eric, we raced China together and were both in Korea at the same time.

Myself and Mom at the swim start area.

Brian and myself, he just got out of the Marines and is heading back to school.

Coming out of the water and headed to T1.

Headed out onto the bike course

Hammerin down on the bike.

Headed out onto the run.

Hurting out on the run after the grueling bike ride.

All smiles after the race.

The "crew" from Germany 70.3 (myself, Petra, and Gary).
Headed back to the hotel after the race.

The best post race recover ICE BATH!

Sitting in 1st Class on the plane seeing the best sunset I have ever seen.

Another great shot of the sunset.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Day 4 in FL....

13 Nov 09- Clearwater Beach FL-

Well today was the day of nice short workouts and a lot of logistics. Having to get everything ready to turn in is always a chore. I think next time I race a 70.3 I am going to make a checklist of what goes in the bags so I make sure I don't forget anything. It is pretty simple but still it would be nice to have my own checklist. So in the bike bag goes my helmet and race belt with number on it, pretty simple. The run bag is a little more complicated, having my shoes, socks, watch band, visor and sunglasses. Now what is in the bike bag ends up going in the run bag when I return from the bike. Now you ask about a swim bag? Well there is no swim bag technically. There is a bag that you turn in right before you head out to swim that has all of your morning clothes in it. Then your wetsuit and goggles and cap end up in your bike bag one you put on your helmet and race number.

So after the bags were ready I headed out to turn in everything at the transition area. We also went over and checked out the new swim course. They moved it from the ocean to the harbor due to hurricane Ida bringing some bad surf in. They moved it over for safety and it will make things a little more interesting, swimmers will go off a dock every 2-3 seconds. Hopefully it will spread things out a little more and the bike course will not be so congested.

I also went out for a swim in the morning and a run later on in the day. Breakfast was over at IHOP and was once again great. Tonight I had dinner with an old Air Force buddy and his family right next to our hotel at Shepards, and best yet it was buffet. Now I am just relaxing and finishing up the blog so I can try and get some sleep. They always say race night is the hardest night to sleep but I think I am pretty tired so I shouldn't have a problem. Everything is already to go for tomorrow so I will be getting up around 450am and having a bowl of oatmeal and some bagels. I will have the race day cup of coffee and hope that morning business gets taken care of, that would make 3 for 3 this year, so fingers crossed for that.

Now onto the important stuff. Since this is the World Championships coverage should be great online. Possibly even a live feed all day, so stay tuned to WWW.IRONMANLIVE.COM. The keyword to look for would be "Athlete Tracker" or "Live Feed". My race # is 1554 and age group 18-24.

So now onto the goals:

1. Finish
2. Finish under 5 hours
3. Bike Sub 2:30
4. Run Sub 1:35
5. Finish under 4:45
6. Most importantly have fun and inspire a spectator to race in the future............

This is the World Championships, the best of the best are out here for this race so it will give me an opportunity to see where I stand in only my second year in the sport and set a bar for where I am.

THANK YOU to everyone who has continued to support me this season and who continues to follow the blog.

Below are some pictures from today.

The new swim course.

The new swim start area.

Karen my "valet bike parker" and myself after we setup my transition area.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Day 3 in FL........

12 Nov- Clearwater Beach FL-

Well today was another disappointing day in Florida in terms of weather. Woke up to head out for an early 830 swim and once again the surf was bad and we decided to not swim. So I just walked around Ironman Village and did a little shopping. I got a new bike jersey and a visor along with a bag since the race bag we got with our race stuff was not that great. After doing some shopping I went and checked in and they took down my weight. I will be racing at a whole 170lbs which is 5lbs heavier than China and 10lbs heavier than Germany. So I am thinking that it will equate to more power on the bike but that is a long shot ;) Looking for excuses on why I put on 10 pounds, but it will all work out.

After check in we headed over and had brunch on the beach and I enjoyed some mahi-mahi. After brunch I enjoyed a short nap and then headed out for a 20 mile ride. It was extremely windy but was good to get out on the bike and have the legs moving. Once back from the ride I headed to the Carb Loading Dinner with Petra and Gary. We decided to ride our bikes since it was about 2 miles away. On the way over we got to see the sunset and it was really cool minus the fact of all the clouds. The awards dinner was down on the beach and it was really nice but once again the weather put a damper on the night. It was really windy and cold. However they did mention me in the race introduction. They only talked about a few people and since I am military they had a special Thank You to all the military members. They announced athletes from each branch of service and the Air Force has 4 or 5 members here. It was really cool to here my name announced and the people I was sitting with all clapped and thanked me for my service. Really cool experience and enjoyed it very much. Well it is late and this is the most important night for sleep so I better get to bed since I have an early attempt at a swim tomorrow, weather pending.

The three of us all dressed up and riding our "race" bikes to the dinner.

The awesome sunset. Where the palm trees are is where the dinner was and where the awards banquet will be.

Hanging out at the dinner.

The bike, myself and Petra walking to the dinner on the beach.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Day 2 in FL......

11 Nov- Clearwater Beach FL-

Well Ida is really showing some effects all the way down here in Clearwater. Woke up this morning to go swim @ 0800 and well the ocean sure did not want any swimmers in it. It was really rough and not to pleasant. I wouldn't really call what I did out there swimming, more like just splashing around. It was good to get out and into the rough water just in case it doesn't calm down by Saturday at least I will know what to expect. After the swim I headed over to IHOP to hopefully get what I attempted to order yesterday because I was quite hungry. Below is a picture from breakfast, and it was a breakfast of champions.

After breakfast I headed over to Clearwater Country Club for a round of golf. I figured it was a good way to stay busy and have a little fun on this vacation. It was a decent course and I think the guy hooked me up since it was veterans day. On top of the normal military discount I do not think I got charged for the "rental" clubs. I only pad $38 for 18 holes of golf, I brought my own golf balls but forgot to pack my glove so that was included in the $38. I also brought my golf shoes and some tees to prevent having to buy all kinds of golf stuff. Well planned out and turned out to be a good time.

Once back from the round of golf I decided to head out for a 30 minute run. It was nice and shot and was a great run. I ran out along the city strip and then came back running on the beach. It was funny watching all the "surfers" try and surf on the small waves that were crashing right on the shore. The run ended up being a little over 4 miles and my legs felt really good. After the run I headed out to dinner with Petra and Gary, Gary was also in Germany and is racing on Saturday.

Dinner was good and I have started my carb "loading" process, well actually just an excuse to eat a lot and not feel bad about it. Had a few Blue Moon draft beers and now I am back here just writing this pre race report and going to hit the sack. We plan on swimming around 830 tomorrow and then ride for a little while tomorrow. I also need to check in and get my race bag and then tomorrow night is CARB night and MOM gets into town around 10pm or 11pm.

Myself and Petra getting ready to rough it out on the brutal swim.

The Breakfast of Champions. (2 eggs, 2 sausage, 2 pieces of ham, 2 strips of bacon, hashbrowns, french toast and a big glass of OJ.)

Out on the tee box getting ready to golf.
Riding around in the golf cart, a somewhat relaxing day on the course.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Day 1 in FL....

10 Nov- Clearwater Beach FL-

After 27 hours of flying I finally made it to Florida and got checked into the hotel. Ended up hitting the sack around 3am and was able to get a good 5 hours of sleep in. Some good things about the trip over was that I got charged ZERO dollars for my bike box, cough cough "sports equipment". I tried a new theory this time and packed it with only my bike and wheels and absolutely nothing else. It came in at exactly 41lbs and was 19kg. The lady in Istanbul said you are lucky it is light or else we wouldn't let you take it. I was thinking well what would you make me do with it, leave it here?? So luckily I was not charged and it was checked all the way from Istanbul to Tampa, only had to take it to customs in JFK and that was it. I made sure to get plenty of sleep on the flight over to try and adjust to the time zone. I woke up with about an hour left of the 10 hour flight and the lady sitting across the aisle looked at me and said "I envy you". I was confused at first and then she told me how I was "out" for a good majority of the flight. Well I have had a small cold lately so I took some Nyquil and I am sure that is why I was "OUT".

Day 1 here in FL was a good day. Got up at 830 and went out on a search for Waffle House but could not find one so settled for IHOP. I ordered the "sampler" and the waitress screwed up and brought me something else but it was very similar minus the hash browns, so I received 3 eggs, 2 sausage, 2 french toast, 2 pieces of toast and a big glass of OJ. It was great and held me over for a little while till I met up with an old friend from Seymour Johnson AFB, one of boss's out there who is now a MR. instead of a Capt. We met up and had lunch on the beach and caught up on life and how everything is going. It is one of the nice things about the military is you meet so many people and have friends all over. He lives near Clearwater over in Tampa so we might get together Friday for dinner as well.

After lunch I headed out for my race week "long" ride of 30 miles. It was really windy from the storm up north of us "Hurricane Ida". It has brought some rain and wind down on us. It didn't start raining on me till the last 8 miles of the ride which of course dirtied up the bike, which means I have to clean it again. So I plan to ride on Thursday and then clean it after that. On my ride I spotted a VFW and stopped in to see if they had any hats. Of course they all stared at me like I was crazy. First off I was in my bike gear, spandex and helmet. Then being under 50 and walking into a VFW you stand out like a sore thumb. I picked up two hats from their post for some friends in Korea and then headed back out on the road. Felt really good on the bike and the tail wind back really helped and I was flying.

So I got back from my ride and was just hanging out in the hotel room and came across Terenzo Bozzonne's Tweet about being at a local bike shop (he is last years Ironman 70.3 World Champion). So I figured nothing going on so I would catch a cab over to the bike shop and check out his sweet ride and hang out. It was a good time and got to talk to several folks from around here and then here him talk about some race strategy and got some race tips. What is cool about the pro triathletes is once you tell them you are military they normally have a bunch of questions about you and your life with training and the military. They are all really down to earth and are cool people. After the bike shop I headed back down towards the beach to have some dinner.

Dinner was GREAT! Had some awesome raviolis which came with a salad and bread. Threw on some extra carbs with two Blue Moon drafts. It is hard to come back to the states from Turkey where I do not have the luxury of draft beer and not have a couple while I am back. I also met up with a friend that I met in Germany and enjoyed the beers with her while we caught up and told "triathlon 'war' stories".

Well now I am laying in bed getting ready to watch my favorite show on TV, only problem is I will have to watch the darn commercials. SONS OF ANARCHY, hour and a half special!!

Check back tomorrow for a Day 2 Update!

Team HOYT ad in the airport. If you have not heard of this father/son team, check out this link.....TRUE INSPIRATION! http://www.teamhoyt.com/

A view from the hotel.
Terenzo's SHIV; a SWEET and AERO ride!
Terenzo and myself at the bike shop. Last years 70.3 World Champion!

Petra and me at the Bar!