Thursday, December 09, 2010

Get tough part 2.

Last night at the end of a little bit of our usual ribbing with a training partner I got thinking. We joke with each other about our weak areas and even our strong sport is because we do them to much and should focus on the weak ones, and so it goes. He said the other day he couldn't ride with me because “us real triathletes train the swim and run in winter.” Now he was half if not mostly joking as he trains very consistently on the bike and is subsequently very fast on the bike.
yet he’s right in that many triathletes do stay away from the bike in winter.
The reason most do is that with daylight short, cold weather and the simple lack of knowledge of what to do with less time its hard to get it in. Or worse, the misconception that if your focus is a long event like a ½ or full Ironman you need to train “long” all the time. Now, don’t get me wrong there is less time to ride. Riding in winter can be chilly business and trainers suck. I almost never ride mine.
There are folks out there that ride a lot in winter and do little to no swimming! I talked about this a bit HERE. On how to maximize your swim time. Some good points there on both sides of that discussion.
The Real reason that triathletes don’t ride as much in the winter is a bigger issue. Many athletes (across the board) train what is easy or convent to train not what they should train. There is a balance here, we have to play with the deck we are dealt but playing that hand aggressively to win and playing it to simply not get eliminated are 2 very different things.
I won’t get into specifics on time management. If you haven’t read our off season series or been to the “training your weakness” seminar then get caught up! Less time means opportunity not more obstacles. And by the way, its winter your A race is months away why do you need to be supper specific now anyway?
Get tough!
If you want to get better, faster, more efficient then guess what… you can’t do whatever is convenient you have to MAKE THINGS HAPPEN! I know it’s cold and dark but your competition doesn’t care. Neither does the race course and the clock doesn’t slow down just for you on the last climb because you didn’t “get as many miles in as last year” how many times you heard that sob story!
“ OK Eric, fine Mr. tough guy. I leave for work in the dark. I come home and its dark what do I do”
Here are a few ways to make riding in winter very doable.
1. Realize 99% of your competition is in the same situation. Don’t’ get discouraged because you can’t do what you normally do for a bike training session. If you can use your time 1% better than them, you win come July. My fuzzy math here. 1%, times 2 rides a week for 4 months is 32%. Percent of what I’m not sure but you see what I am getting at.
2. Get some warm cycling clothes. There is no reason you can’t ride in winter cold. Lobster mitt gloves, good bottles, thermal jackets, etc. will have you warm without looking like a the kid from A Christmas story.
3. Maximize the time you DO have. Ride for workload. TSS or Kj’s. Not miles. Don’t have a power meter, Fine, ride for time and never coast. EVER! If you stay aerobic you get “endurance” adaptations. Going easy doesn't get you better “endurance”. workload does. Yeah its easier to get lots of workload with more time, so do your best. And read these 3 articles again. start at the bottom on the page. 
4. Plan ahead! I’m so sick of saying this but really look at your training/ training goals for that week. What is the weather like? What’s your work sch, like? What’s the gym sch. Like? Now put it all together. Nice days/when you have time (weekends) ride. Make those days ride days. Its never to cold to run and swimming is in a controlled environment.
5. Always be prepared. Get out of work early, got extra time at lunch. It was supposed to snowing on Sunday but now it sunny and nice… be ready to improvise, over come and adapt!
6. The trainer. It sucks but it works. Here are a few tips for that. And winter in general.
7. Spin classes: here’s a whole article on spinning. Here’s the deal. it’s your workout, do what you want. It’s inside and better than the trainer, I think anyway. If your swimming it’s probably at a gym find a spin class that works. Get there a bit early and/or stay a few minutes late it will be easy to get past that key 70 min. mark. Brick run on the tread mill anyone. The possibilities and combinations are endless. And they all maximize your time.
The Bottom line:
If you do what’s convenient, don’t plan ahead and let mother nature dictate your training sch. You’re not gona get any better. You’ll be having the same “yeah man I don’t have the time that guy has to train” Conversation as you did last year. Weak! He doesn’t have more time than you he MADE more time. Being a good athlete isn’t about who’s “talented”, who has more time or a better bike. Its about who takes the time (a very small about of time) to plan ahead and MAKE things happen. To get what they need to get done, and to meet there goals.

Saturday, November 06, 2010

Getting the most out of a coach is your responsibility

I have seen many articles and blog posts in my day about what makes a good coach. What he, she should be doing, not doing, etc. And, for the most part, they are all pretty valid. The topic is also one sure to attract lots of attention. Picking a coach is tough. I know, I have done it myself!

But what about being a suitable and good client? In my many years coaching I have seen such promise in athletes that simply was never tapped into. why?
So, you have done your diligent searching, interviewed your possible coach and asked them the big 10 questions and now you’re under way. Now what. How do you get the most out of your coach? Guess what it’s your responsibility!

Do the work And do it right.

We’ll of course. Its your fitness, its your big race, your goals, your body. You have to work hard, get up in the morning and follow the plan you and your coach set out to do.

“wait wait, what did you say EK? Me and my coach?” yeah. The grand plan, the here we are now, we want to go there, this is the path I think we should take. You need to have a common understanding of where you’re going. You don’t say to your buddies “hey lets go to the movies! Sweet see you there.” What movie? what time, what day, what theater!!?! For those of you that hired a coach, said, I wana do IM lake placid and off you went… its likely you and your coach are on a different bus there. Have a long talk with your coach about the BIG PICTURE.

This conversation should boil down to training phase’s, month to month, week to week and then, the day to day. “Ok cool we are taking this path. And this month it means this” your training plan.

On to executing the workouts. Before my clients do any workout they need to know 3 things. If you (the athlete) don’t know these, you need to ask!

3 Keys to knowing your workout:
~How to do it. 3x15’ in zone 4 with 4’ rest can be done a few ways. Uphill, flats, rd bike or TT bike. After a warm up or after 2 hr’s riding? What cadence. The workout is 3 hr’s what do I do the rest of the time? Etc. I have prescribed all these variations before, anyone can write down 3x15’. You have to know all the details

~Why you’re doing it. You have to know why. What’s the purpose? What is the physiological adaptation I am looking for here? This will help you focus on that. Doing workouts blind is a waste! And it’s your fault! There is no magic workout! “why is Joe a becoming a better runner than me? We do the same workouts?” He does it better, harder and smarter than you, that’s why.

~How it pertains to you and you’re a race: Ok, you got the above down. But why are you doing run intervals on a hill in Z4 while training for an ironman? When we get down to specific workouts, you should be taking apart certain aspect of the race or discipline and training each separate part. We talk about this in the off season training articles and the fall training seminar. When you do this you can get pretty non-specific. Know where you’re going with everything you do. Your car runs on gas but there’s a reason you have a big battery in there.

You, the athlete, has to take action. Coaches don’t read minds. No coach is going to wake you up in the morning, ask you how you slept, etc. If you’re tired you have to communicate that. If you don’t have time to do 3 hr’s next Sunday, if you don’t know the 3 keys to knowing your work out you have to ask! I once heard at a stage race “my coach sucks! I haven’t talked to him in 2 weeks!” I said “that sucks, does he just not answer his phone?” “ohh I don’t know I haven’t called him.” Are you serious!! I quickly told Mr., I need more attention, that before you go telling people your coach sucks maybe you should make a call first. You have to communicate with your coach. You have to ask questions. If you don’t want to, are going to wait for them to call or don’t care, don’t get a coach and save yourself and them some time.

Take control!
If you read nothing else I write read this.

Things don’t happen to you, you gotta MAKE IT HAPPEN. We have all heard it’s not the cards you’re dealt its how you play them. Life’s gives you lemons, make lemonade. Then get some vodka, get some more lemons and tequila, get all your friends together make sure the unleaded lemonade is clearly labeled, collected all the car keys and have a party! “The glass is half full or half empty?” I say neither, he glass is too big. Seems like a pretty fixable issue, get a smaller glass and move on!

Things don’t just happen to you. Take control of your life. Take control of your training! Own your training it’s your body.
Its cold, it’s windy, I was at work late, lunch didn’t sit right, I have an early flight, it’s too dark. Yeah these things happen, but when they “happen” all the time there excuses. Fix it.

“adapted, improvise, overcome!” ~Clint Eastword in heartbreak ridge.

Your race won’t be easy. No one is going to hand you your goal on a platter you have to go get it.
Stop saying whoa as me, and start saying whoa, I feel sorry for my competition.

You have to do this and you alone. Your coach can’t teach this, and many will be unlikely to tell you get tough so I’ll say for them. Suck it up and get tough!

I have an infinity symbol tattoo. Its broken however, it doesn’t connect. Every now and then someone takes a close look at it and asks “why is your infinity symbol not complete?”
I say “I am the completion of it. I have to go out and make life happen.” If I sit in the house all day and wait for my business to grow and my legs to stronger and meet new friends guess what, none of that will happen. In fact it won’t be long until the opposite happens.

The best way to do this, Plan ahead.

Chris (left and Peter (right) both won the cat 1 and cat 4 TT respectively in Golden last spring. Peter went to a race the foil lowing day and won yet again! while we adjusted there training quite often over the winter both completed 95-100% of there planned training.

there is no substitute for work!

Plan ahead:

Ever said this to your coach? “Oh yeah, I didn’t do any of the workouts last weekend, I was away.”
really? REALLY? Did you wake up sat at 3am and decide you needed to fly to Canada that morning? Training properly takes planning. And your coach still can’t read your mind. Your month should go like this: Communicate (getting tired of saying this but so few do it enough)

~Communicate your (athlete) sch. For the next month. I need these days off. Away for work here, group ride I would like to do here, etc.
~Look over your training when it’s all set. Make sure it works with your sch. again. Double check.
~Make sure you know the 3 keys to a good workout for every single workout!
~Plan ahead. You may have to get up early for that workout, pack clothes for that, eat pasta for breakfast that day ask to move that workout as the weather looks bad. All this leads to better quality training and better performance on race day.
~Prepare!! Remember things don’t happen to you. Make them happen! stretch, eat and hydrate well before those tough workouts, get pumped up, whatever it takes to get it done.

Listen to others, don’t react.
Its ok to read training articles, listen to others and what they do. But before taking action ask your coach.
Its only a matter of time before people start telling you what workouts you should do, how many hr’s you need to train, how fast you have to go to reach a goal. Go ahead listen, take it in. Realize that everyone has an opinion. And for many of us our local sporting team is the only place we can express those feelings in a place where people will have a clue what we are talking about.

If something sparks a question in your head, ask your coach! See communication again. You need to have trust and faith in your training. You can’t be second guessing yourself all the time. If you hopscotch around form training method to training method you’ll fall very sort of your goal not to mention waist your money if you’re doing what you think is best instead of what your coach has taken the time to lay out for you.

“hey coach, what do you think about this?” Seems like a pretty easy question to me. I get it from my clients all the time. I encourage it. It makes for smarter, better athletes and it pushes me to be a better coach.

Know thyself.

Communication again!! Is it sinking in yet?? Listen to your body. Your coach doesn’t know what “I felt horrible” really means. Horrible to him and you may be two different planets. Horrible how? Tight, empty, weak, tired, good at first then bad. What? If you know you just can’t do it today you have to communicate that. Figure out why and move forward. The answer is probably right there. It’s hard to see the forest through the trees some times. One reason for having a coach is this objective point of view but you have to tell them what’s going on. Every athlete is different. “hey coach I think I can go faster. The Z4 int. are feeling almost easy and I am in the upper end of the zone” that’s a pretty quick e-mail. If you’re too busy to e-mail, too busy to take control and own your training, your too busy to train, organize your life.

Here’s the deal gang. Whether you have a coach or not you have to own your training. Plan ahead. The best results I have seen form athletes all have a common thread. They missed very few if any workouts. Why? Because they don’t have jobs? No because they communicated and planned ahead. Tock steeps to ensure there training was at the highest quality possible. Everyone has set backs. Everyone has tough times and bad workouts. The more you take control, the more take responsibility the better you will be on race day.

Train smart, train safe.

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Weight training over the winter, results and the real world

My last post on Strength training, lifting weights, performance and training in the real world fell short of Nobel prize writing and was more of a rant. The topic has come up again in my training seminars, amongst friends and I have been pointed to some recent studies as well.

Here is a recent study of conversation:

Too long and technical for you. Here are the basic conclusions and findings.

strength training with weights increased “endurance” and power at VO2 by 7%. This study was done with trained cyclist which is nice.

This will be short and to the point. First off there is more than one way to skin a cat. And even more ways to train for an endurance event.

~“But ek you said weights would only increase your max power by 2%.No, I said the people I worked with only had an avg. increase in max power of 2%. I have always been a proponent of “strength training” just not with weights. This study was done as one group doing x amount of “endurance” work which was a specific intensity based on there Vo2. (first of all they should have used threshold here) The strength training group had the strength work ADDED to their endurance work.
So, more work and high intensity work at that made this group “stronger”. No surprise there. The 7% is surprising to me. A very significant gain for sure. I would like to see their workout and progression for sure!

The more athletes I work with the more benefit I see with strength work. With my athletes its done on the bike. With specific intervals, done a specific way. This work has resulted in big gains in max power. And while I have never tested the endurance gains from it the improvement seems to be across the board not just in max power. Is this seemingly increase in endurance from the strength work? Or other training done? I don’t know.

The biggest advantage I see to my “on the bike” strength work is that it saves time. Lots of time.
It can be done without additional hours in the gym. And the gains I have seen have been in 6 weeks or less instead of 3 months. That’s half the time. So now the athlete may do another 6 weeks of some other training depending on their strengths, weaknesses, resources, time to train, etc…

"Time. Time is your worst enemy, your best ally and is the biggest issue EVERY athlete deals with."

Time in the day. Amount of time per week to train, and how much time one has from now (the day they start training) until race day. Further more. What did you do last year? The year before that? How about the last 10 years? This is a bigger discussion on periodization…

The real world.

So ek what if I do your on the bike strength work and lift weights?” good Q. what will happen to your quality of training? On the bike strength work 3 time week. Plus weights 2 times a week. Not sure you can get a maximal effort every workout on that sch. I could do squats every day but they would suck after 2 if not 1 day.

~from Coach Nick. On your point of real world practicality, that is exactly WHY I weight train in the winter. For a 9-6 working stiff, there are very few hours available to me to train on the bike. Core and weight training gives me extra training time that frankly probably wouldn't happen at all if I was sticking to just the bike.

very good point. Nick is a roadie. All riding all the time. One can only sit on a trainer for so long. but if time is THAT short why is one still getting "burned out" or board?
I would rather go to a spin class sit in back and do my strength work (my own workout) on the bike with some pumping tunes, good looking ladies and some other hard working peeps to motivate me. brings up another point on motivation. what motivated you?? This is an important issue.

~Triathletes please don’t tell me you need more to do than the 3 sports you all ready have! If you’re getting burned out or board trying to be an expert at swimming, biking and running you need help.

~“But Lance lifts weights?” good for Lance. If you want to be like Lance, go ahead and lift. Let me know when you win the tour 7 times. Or even get to race in the tour of that matter.

~I was at a team meeting in Boulder , CO and Tim O’donnell was there. (pro triathlete) He was asked “do you lift in the winter?” “yes I do”, he said “but only core and some stability stuff” this is a guy who is a pro. 24-7 he trains and thinks about training…

~doing core work and lifting in the gym are 2 very different things. core, always important do it!

~There are no magic bullets. I hear this every year. “I’m gona xyz this year” its gona make me soooo strong. This is my year!" You’re on the right track. By all means CHANG IT UP!! Take a chance, do something different!! But there are no secrets here. You wana get faster at something. Then get out there and do THAT something!!

Lifting weights is NOT bad for you. In fact it’s quite the opposite. I feel that for reaching your best as a cyclist, triathlete, mtb’er, etc. there are better ways to use your time.

There’s that word again. Time.

This is a very argued topic and I am not saying there is one perfect way to do anything. but this is where the art of training and coaching come into view. there are only 24 hours in a day and so many days from now to race day?

Leave some more Questions and real world situations in the comments! Leave muscle fiber this and hypertrophy that at the door. I want real world. Something we can use in training, out there in the rd. or some results you have had.

Friday, October 01, 2010

Ironman Augusta 70.3

Jared Brown's race report from Augusta 70.3.
His first 1/2 IM and on his way to IM Lake Placid.

August 70.3 - Half Ironman
Date of Race:
Total Race Time: 5h 12m 30s - Swim: 29:51(169/336), Bike: 2:45:56 (? /336), Run: 1:50:03 (115/336)
Overall Place: 699 / 3121
Age Group: Male 30- 34
Age Group Place: 115 /336

Advice I raced by on this day “Don’t create pain to yourself because the race will bring pain to you soon enough.

Race Day: Woke up at 4:50am and had some oatmeal, got dressed, took a few minutes to visualize my swim and race overall. You can laugh at my visualization but for me it brings a calming feeling and I relax. I see so many people on the verge of tears and busting before races b/c they are so nervous and I never feel this way so I am sticking with my visualization. Grabbed my bags and headed down to the hotel lobby to meet Kim & Casey and walk over to the shuttle to transition. Once there got body marked, borrowed a pump and pumped up my tires, set my transition up, and headed over to see Casey and Kim’s transition area. The only thing I did different for this race in transition was packed my running stuff in a plastic bag so it would stay somewhat dry while it rained.
There was a long line for buses so Patti and her friend let me walk with them to the swim start. I don’t like the feeling of being herded like cattle so the walk actually was nice. Once there I separated from them, checked in my gear bag, said hello to ATCer’s I saw, got my chip (almost forgot this though, thanks LeAnn & Heath), put on my wetsuit, and got in my wave group. Watched the pro’s go and then started heading to the start.

The Swim:
I was in wave 4 just behind the pro’s and the first person down the ramp and onto the dock. I knew I wouldn’t be the fastest but I wanted to get to the far side of the dock (advice from Sir Lappi) so that I could have most of the people on my right which is the side I breathe to during races. I sat down on the dock with my feet in the water and splashed water on myself like the Olympic swimmers do. It allowed me to get the cooler water on my body and face without a shock. I then slid in the water; warmed up my wetsuit, put on my goggles, and headed to the yellow start buoy. I found a rope off the buoy that I literally sat on for a minute. Then I heard 1 and a ½ minutes to start…….fastest 1.5 minutes ever….Go!
I swam and sighted very little for the first 500 meters as I could see people and the shore. Then WHACK! I look up and I apparently was heading to far left b/c I hit a kayak. I had to smile and laugh at myself here. I then pointed more right and back to the course and inside the first yellow buoy. I could see people all around me once I returned to the course but there was little hitting or contact. Weeds were coming and going with some paddles off my hands but I got use to that pretty fast. I tried drafting a few times but it just wasn’t that easy for me. THEN IT HAPPENED! I was swimming along feeling really relaxed and good and then I saw what looked like fish food in the water. The little orange flakes people feed their fish. I thought to myself “NO” then felt myself start to feel real sick and my cheeks puff out. I then forced myself to keep my head in the water, hold my breath, closed my eyes, and keep swimming. After about ten strokes I couldn’t breathe so my thoughts and stomach relaxed and I didn’t see any more fish food. I sighted about every 10 – 15 strokes unless I was right next to someone then I stayed around them. This swim I actually passed a few people so I had to steer around them but it didn’t hinder my pace. I then looked up and saw the houseboats up ahead not too far. I got this overwhelming feeling of happiness and all my brain was saying was you are going to finish this race today and I was at peace with the day right there and then. Never had that feeling before in a race but it was a really nice surprise. I then picked up my arm turnover a little more and slowly started to inch my way forward and to the right side. Soon enough I saw the finishing buoy and I saw the bottom and stood up. Swim completed! Looked at my watch, time – NO STARTED! Oh well.

Swim Time: 29:51 - Goal was 30 – 35 min or less. CHECK!

T1: As I exited the water I immediately got a cramp in my left hamstring (come to find out this would be noticeable all day). I stopped and stretched it out and then walked up the ramp. I forced myself to walk up the ramp to get my heart rate down faster. I always come out of the water with a screaming heart rate. At the top of the ramp was a table so I flung my leg on it and stretched again. Got my wetsuit down to my waist, got to the strippers, and they pulled that thing off in now time, headed to my transition area. I decided to take a short detour to get a high 5 from Casey then to my bike and gear. I saw Ted and John Recker in the transition area. I took my time and got everything on and headed out for the ride.

T1 Time: 3:56

Once I mounted the bike I started my watch and headed out with Ted, well for about three pedals and then he was gone. Right out of the transition area I saw Ted’s wife and his sign which made me smile! Just nice seeing and hearing people cheer for you. I took it a little easy at the start of the bike to get a feeling of the wet roads and see what the road conditions were. After about 3 miles I decided to change to my large front ring and the bike wouldn’t change gears. So I stayed in the smaller ring and rode it out. The 808’s I rented were making a little bit of a odd noise with the water and wind on them that I wasn’t use to but I figured keep riding and if something goes wrong fix it then or head home, either way just keep going. Early on I was moving fast and felt real good. At about mile 8 my neck started to bother me a little. This has happened a few times before but not during races. My bike setup is a pretty aggressive position so I knew my neck could have potential to get sore but not this early. I just kept tucking it under and touching my chest a few times each mile to try and stretch it out. Doing this made it manageable but I knew it was going to be a long day. I rode along the course taking the turns slower than normal due to the wet roads and struggled to keep my glasses clear from the rain. At mile 22 I looked at my watch and it said 1:05:00. I thought to myself that people where just starting the swim still. I also knew I was behind on the time I was expecting to be at. So I tried again to get into the large ring and it worked. I pushed a little for about 5 miles and then felt my legs not burning but just weak. I would try to give a little harder push and it just felt like I was trying to move a ton of bricks. I usually don’t have this issue on the bike. This is my strongest discipline in a race but today my legs were wet and didn’t have the muscle to push the large gear so I dropped it back down and picked up the cadence a little and kept going. Mile 34 I finally got passed by David Cater who said hello and went on by. Then shortly after Joseph went by me at a steady pace and said hello as well. I could tell by Joseph’s pace he was going to have a good day. He looked steady and strong. Mile 40 the rain really started to come down so I had to take my glasses off and stash them away. The last 10 miles were really bumpy roads but the rain subsided so it was only drizzling. I looked at my watch and it said 3:05:00, I couldn’t believe what I saw but I didn’t think twice about it I just headed into transition and thought just start running and get to the finish line, at this point I didn’t care about my time.

Bike Time: 2:45:56 (20.25 avg.) – Goal 2:35:00 – 2:45:00 – I say CHECK!

T2: I took my time again and decided to put socks on. My feet were wet but I just put my socks on, grabbed my e – gels, hat on, jog out of transition and onto the race course.

T2 Time: 3:04

Run: Right out of transition I saw Cheryl and stopped and told her it was going to be a little longer day than expect and apologized. She told me I had a sub 30 swim, gave me a kiss, and ran up a little ahead of me to take a few more pictures. I told her I felt pretty good but just had an awful bike time. She said don’t worry and that she would see me at the finish. After she said that I decided I can’t obsess over time so I changed my watch to HR and never took it off. From here on out I would have no idea of my time.
I started out running a pretty easy pace and feeling really good. Miles were clicking off not fast but steady. At about mile 3 I got passed by an ATCer who I didn’t know. His name was Scott. We talked briefly about how I hadn’t met him before and he said he hadn’t trained much with the group this year due to work. Then I told him to go ahead and have a good run. I was about 25 yards behind him for miles 3 – 5. For the first time I was trying to use my HR on the run and it was a steady 153 – 157. I believe my LT is 172 for the run so this was a little to low but I was feeling good so I was staying with it.
At around mile 5 is were I ran through the ATC group (awesome feeling), my HR went to 161and I felt a jolt of energy. I controlled my pace though b/c I knew it wouldn’t last. Right after the ATC group Scott stopped for water and to fix his chip which was digging into his ankle. I kept running and told him he would catch me. Mile 5.5 he did (this is when I took an e – gel) and we ran together to mile 6.5 where we caught Dr. Peter Pate and Scott mentioned he had us as a pace to finish at around 1:50:00 or a little less. We chatted briefly with Peter and he said he was feeling well. I tucked in behind Peter who was running a little faster than we were but I felt I needed to push a little to run the sub 2hr ½ marathon which was a side goal of mine before the race. At mile 8 I started to really feel my left hamstring tighten up and I was just waiting for it to cramp. I just stayed behind Peter and concentrated on his right heel. When I did this it forced me to not think about anything but his foot. My mind would start to wonder and I would bring it right back to his heel. He was still moving along pretty good.
At about mile 9.5 Scott mentioned he was a little to close to his LT than he wanted but he was keeping up fine. Right before mile 10 I believe there was a water stop and Peter and Scott stopped to get water. I grabbed a sponge and a little water and kept running. I didn’t want to stop b/c 1) I would give my hamstring a chance to cramp & 2) I wanted to walk so I wouldn’t give myself the chance. Then mile 11 came and I knew it was that time, the time the advice I was given was going to happen, the race was going to bring the pain to me. My hamstring started to tighten a little more, so I tried to lengthen my stride and then shorten my stride and pick the pace up to see which was less painful. It seemed a middle point was what was best. I had two thoughts in my head, keep running and get to the ATC group again. Those were the only 2 thoughts for what seemed like hours but was only a little over a mile. The pain now was starting to take over my thoughts and I came up on the ATC group. Now I had about .8 miles and I was done. Thought was JUST KEEP RUNNING. All of a sudden this young lady comes by me with a turnover rate close to the road runner and says “Great job! Keep it up, I only had to run.” It was Jessica and she was moving. For about 10 strides I tried to keep up with her but didn’t have a shot. Running alone I saw LeAnn up ahead so I kept pace and caught up with her right before the finish. Said hello to her and that I would see her in a little while (this is the worst feeling in the world in this race b/c I knew she had another lap and I was finished) once I turned and saw the finish I saw the clock said 5:26:14 so I picked up my pace, raised my hands, and finished.

Run Time: 1:50:03 (8:24 avg.) – Goal sub 2:00:00 – CHECK!

Monday, September 06, 2010

IM Canada, I introduce you to Chris

I understand why people keep going back now. I get it. An ironman is such a big event you can’t really describe it. The energy around the race has no words, having the announcer count down from 10, feeling, yes feeling not hearing, everyone yelling and hollering. All 2850 athletes, 3500 volunteers, and god knows how many spectators. It is for lack of better words simply incredible.

Ok enough of that. Race morning I was wide awake when the alarm went off. Rice, eggs, yogurt, infinit, lets rock! We got dropped off, marked up, added stuff to transition bags, double check tire pressure, PT is working, my bike is row 13… awesome…

A bit of stretching and a little zoning out so I don’t start tearing apart the alloy fence in a need to burn off energy and we are off! Feel good. Lined up in front. I mean ON the front, dead center. "If your faster than me crawl over me or shut the f** up!"

Ohh right, that’s Chris. Many people that I have raced or trained with have meet him briefly but probably didn’t realize it. Chris is my alter racing personality. He is incredibly smart, supper savvy racer, cunning, never loses his cool and is very, very aggressive. The price we pay for all this knowledge, wisdom and fierce competitiveness is Chris is not the most fun to be around. Basically he is a totally A. hole. He doesn’t care about you, anyone else or anything else. For my rowing friends (who were few) Chris over took most of my day to day personality. Not pretty.

Alright, approaching half way in the swim and a gap opened up between me and the group I was with. I pushed hard to close the gap but It was too much, I couldn’t do it. “what should I do?” I thought. Chris chimes in “look behind you moron! There are 2850 people racing, there is likely to be a few right behind you, you can draft! And hurry up! I wana start riding!!” see… kind of a jerk.
Sure enough a guy came around me. I got on his feet and we connected with the group at the turn for home.
I swam hard I won’t lie, and when I heard, “well, we only have 57 minutes on the clock for our top age groupers here”, from the announcer as I jumped onto my bike I thought for a second I may have just blown my whole race. Well whatever time to do some serious cycling execution.

The first 10 miles was supper chill, over McLean rd. short climb but with some steep sections. Use a 27 cog for this race people. I had a very strong bike and I was in mine several times. The first 38 miles or so are pretty fast roads and while it didn’t feel like there was a tail wind, there was and Chris noticed it. hey! Eric, you see the leaves on the trees? Its windy, doesn’t feel like it now but we are gona have a big head wind second half on the bike. Stay loose I stayed smooth and got lots of cals down.

Up Richter pass. A tough stair steeped climb. It surprised me that even being at the front end of the amateur field people still climbed horribly! Guys weighing 10-20 pounds more than me would blow by me on the steep part (I was doing 260 watts) then on the flat section I would only do 220 and I would blow right by them! “keep it up morons! I am gona make you pay on yellow lake! Nice job EK stick to the plan” Chris said to me. I don’t let him speak out loud anymore.

Down the decent, more food, some evacuation and onto the rollers. These are tough, and here came the head wind. I starting passing more and more people here. Pushing 220 watts now. The out and back was smooth. A bit harder now, fueling was perfect. I had all my food gone by yellow lake, sands 1-200 cals of infinit for the last 17 miles down hill into town. As yellow lake kicked up I passed more people. The roads were wet from a passing thunder shower. I would later find out a shower passed through later and gave several people hypothermia. Ouch! Glad I missed that. The yellow lake climb was great. I felt amazing, I kept asking to go harder but Chris kept me to the plan. The crowds were awesome. Like riding up a big climb in the tour. People shouting, both sides of the road, barley enough room for 1 bike at a time. It was sick!!!

I got rocked by 30+ mph cross winds on the decent, and some rain. No biggie. Roads were dry in town. And I backed off to 200 watts or so for the last 15 minutes or so coming into town.

My bike data is
HERE. I could not have executed a better bike. 230 watts, best 2 hr. was from the bottom of Richter pass to the summit of yellow last. Mile 50-95. Best hour was the second hour of that 2 hr’s. I have never felt better after 5 hr’s on the bike. NEVER.

Quick, smooth T 2 where if not for my helper in the change tent I would have run out with my helmet on. Thank you!

Onto the run. I felt good. Mile one, 8:10, “take it easy EK.” Mile 2, 7:50, “Hey Crowie, if your gona blow this thing right here I’ll go home. GET-IT -TOGETHER!!! Ok, so a backed off and found a nice rhythm at 8:20 or so. I had a few quick pee stops but nothing major.
Tummy was good fueling was going well. Pee on the bike. Peeing on the run sucks. The wind and wet roads kept me from doing so on the last decent. The hills as at the half way point of the run are tough, but seemed almost shorter than I imagined. I grabbed my special need bag. Another flask of Infinit and a can of red bull. Now, I already have a flask of my super double secret go go juice, but I put a red bull in there just in case. I felt pretty good here but before I knew it I drank ¾ of it. Ok well, guess I needed that??
Back over the hills and onto the return leg. When I passed mile 16 something very strange happened. I thought. “ohh yeah, I ONLY have 10 miles left” this thought acutely made me laugh. I had come from being soar after a 30’ jog in November to this. “only 10 miles”. Another 30-34 ager passed me. I had lost count, a number of people were wearing compression gear which covers their age. Should be illegal if you ask me. You look LAME! And while I knew I was close to the front coming off the bike I didn’t know exactly. The thought of not making it to kona washed over my body a swarm of locusts my mental focus slipped away and there was nothing I could do. . .

Chris was gone, he couldn’t do anything anymore. Then I felt something that I was sure I would feel but hadn’t yet. “hey kid, you’re lookin good ya know. Shit I think your gona make it.” It was my grandfather. He died the wed. before the race.

I felt horrible for not being there in Fl. with him and my family. The night before he passed he said to my mom, who was by his side, that he wanted me to go to Canada. To race. He said, “I’ll be there with him”.

And sure enough here he was. I could hear him plan as day. And see he face. That tan leathery skin, worn by the life of raising 3 kids, fight in a world war, and few other story’s I can’t tell here.

“Eric, I don’t care if you qualify for Hawaii. You should be happy with just being able to do this, huh.” There are people that can’t walk you know, can see, can’t do lots of the things that you can do. Look around this place is beautiful, and you’re here doing great! Now get to the finish so you can have a beer for me! I’m thirsty!”

That was him, always keeping me grounded, showing me the appreciation I should have when I lost it.

Mile 20 came and so did the wind. 20-30 mph head wind while running up a long, long false flat.
“6 miles EK lets do this!!” I was feeling good again and thought I could run sub 8:30’s but the wind was crushing.

Climbers have a term for the area above 26,000 feet in altitude. It’s called the death zone. Not because climbers are bad asses, or there crazy. It’s acutely a very good name. Above that altitude you are dying. Rather quickly too. Your body can not recover. No matter how much you sleep, even if you could. No matter how much you eat, even if your digestive system acutely did work. You just keep dyeing.

Mile 20 to 26.2 in an Ironman is like the death zone. There is nothing you can do to stop the pain in your quads. You can’t surge to get behind someone and draft, if you bonk there is no coming back, it’s over, you’re walking. It took every ounce of my being to concentrate to each steep. If you lost that concentration your body would instinctively do the only sensible thing, stop. You have to really force it. If you look at the girl in the bikini, or the 2 guys dressed up as Iron man or smell the burgers from the hotel, you’re walking.

Despite all this I was still running and running 8:30-8:40 pace. I guess THIS worked. My feet began to scuffle quite a bit now. “pick your feet up EK, come up up!!” chris was back noticing things I cannot, making adjustments and combating issues before they happen. It felt like I was high steeping. Like I was marching or something. In reality I was barley clearing the ground with my feet.
With 300 meters to go one more 30-34 ager passed me. “ahh come on EK get on that! WTF!, we are not finished yet, we don’t give up” I tried to accelerate, and did, but not enough. I came down the finishing shoot alone, high fived some kids crossed the line, said a quick thank you to gramps and hobbled over to the finishers coral. Drank about 14 cups of soup, and ate plenty of food.

A bit later I found our souginer of the weekend and another roomy finished, Paul.

You have to watch people finish at midnight once in your life. Some guy finish 4 seconds before the cutoff at midnight. Are you kidding me?!! 17 hours out on the course and it came down to 4 seconds!

Some stats from my race:

9:52. (9th ag. 71st over all)

Swim: 54:30 (there was speculation the course was short. I believe it. Maybe by 1-2 minutes)

Bike: see power file. Time 5:07, 3rd in AG. 230 watts norm. felt great

Run: 8:30 first half. 8:40 second half. 3:45 total. Felt much better than I thought. Cloudy and cool on the run. Good temps, wind was brutal in last 6 miles.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Finding your Peak!

Ahhhh… the big Taper. You finally get to relax. Skip the hill workout and the mega mileage brick on Saturday… Some people hate this time of training. I am one of them. It’s a scary time. The time when you can do very little to gain anything and do every thing to screw up months or even years of training. However it is necessary to achieve maximum potential. First off I prefer to use the term “Peaking”. Tapering promotes the idea of doing less and less, and this is not the complete story. Tapering makes me think of something getting smaller and smaller, and that’s not what we are trying to do. Peaking is the process in which we achieve maximum physical and mental performance potential. This can be a lot more complex than just cutting back your mileage.We will discuss this in general terms for a race or your big event. Peaking workouts and how much you do and don’t do, can and will vary a lot depending on your event, duration, and skill level.

First off the peaking phase duration will vary depending on the duration of your event. The longer the event the longer your peaking phase. For Iron distance events, stage races, etc. the longer the lead up of peaking. You might see over a month of decreased volume in some cases. In the weeks leading up to you’re A race the amount of aerobic fitness one can gain is minimal if any at all. So don’t kill your self! Skip the long ride and always, ALWAYS error on the side of doing less. As a general rule I like to decrease total volume by 40-60%. Endurance training can be cut back by the greater amounts. For those doing shorter distances where you may have quite a bit of intensity training here are a few key things to note.

~Make sure you are fully rested before a hard workout. We are looking for maximum speed and performance now, not beating our selves up. This will also build confidence. You’ll be amazed at how fast/far you go on your threshold intervals after only a 30’ warm up and taking the day before off instead of the 3 hour ride or tough run.
~Work your strengths. You will be racing your strengths so focus on them. Use them, race them. This will build further confidence and hone your skills for race day.
~Make your workouts simulate race conditions. Use the aero bars more/ race bike (if you haven’t been) wear the clothes shoes, etc... Do a group swim in open water. Do a race sim day. Practice fueling and mental preparation. Make sure every thing works!
~Use a B race as prep. If your training for a long distance race a shorter race in the weeks leading up to it can really get the kinks out. It will allow you to use some racing strategy you are planning in a consequence free environment. Does the elastic band holding the shoes on the bike trick really work? Or is it not worth it?

Over all:
As we peak, decrease your overall volume. If you have been doing 3 hr rides and 4x 400 meters running on the track do 90 minutes in the saddle, and 2 or 3x300m intervals. You want to stay fresh and sharp but not worn down. Workouts should be short and sweet. They might burn but you should recover fast. By maintaining or even increasing your intensity your body thinks that training is still on full blast and your body will continue to adapt full blast. But… you have decreased the volume and by the time it realizes that you have actually done less your body has over compensated and your flying. Further hone this adaptation with race specific workouts in a race specific environment and you will be more ready on race day than you ever imagined.
While this decreased training time will be nice you should still treat your self well. Treat your self like your still training hard. Get that recovery drink even if you feel you don’t need it. Get plenty of sleep and keep up on stretching, etc…

The other item you will need to keep busy is your brain. Don’t think too much. Go over the race plan, make sure the tires on the bike are in good shape and just go. You have done this in training so you can do it in the race. Remember there is not much you can do to get faster in the week or three before the big race but you can do everything to blow it. So stay the course. Take care. Eat the extra pasta. Skip the morning swim if your feeling tired. And don’t be afraid to light it up a few times. Show your stuff, whether in a race or a short hard work out with the training partners. You have been looking at your heart Rate and power meter all season staying in “your zone”. Time to see how far you can push your self and start looking back the all the people your beating!
Stay safe and have fun!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Training Seminar

Free Training seminar!!
Be there.

Time: 7pm till we're done
Location: foxtrot wheel and edge
776-C W. Baseline Rd.
Lafayette, CO
~Late season racing and training.
~Avoiding burn out
~Recovery and training in the fall (most adaptation-least amount of fatigue)
~Cyclocross or not??

Friday, July 30, 2010

Run up Longs Peak

Last weekend I finished a big run focus week
with a hike/run up Longs peak with 2 EK
Endurance Coaching team members.

Kyle, Amanda and myself headed out at about 4am and got our 14er groove on!
They are headed to Pikes Peak soon to race in the Pikes Peak ascent! Both being avid hikers with several 14er’s and even Mt Kilimanjaro under their belt, they decided to take it up a notch. The pikes peak ascent is a running race form the base of the mt. to the summit. 13.1 miles straight up to an altitude of over 14,000 feet. ! yeah… I’ll be watching.

After some easy hiking for 10 minutes we were warmed up and got into a nice jogging rhythm. I made it to the turn of for chasm lake in 50’ or so. And we were up at the high camp/ boulder field in well under 2hr. we were relegated to hiking/ scrambling up the rest of the climb. The sun rise was beautiful. After hiking through the clouds in the dark we were above a thick white blanket of clouds fully exposed to the sun and her best friend, the blue sky.

The weather was great. Chilly in the shade hot in the sun, standard CO mtn weather.

I did a bit more running on the decent which was not comfortable but held my composure.
What a great day in the outdoors and a fantastic day of training.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

The Boulder Peak Triathlon

This past weekend was the Boulder Peak triathlon.
An Oly. Distance race that features a short yet nasty climb up the 15 % grades of old stage rd. the scenic beauty of the boulder reservoir and rocky mtns. I have always heard this is a race NOT to missed. My thought was always one of, “its an Oly. dis. triathlon. I know the course, relax, its good I am sure but can be any better than another race?” well now I know! It’s simply awesome.
This race is a fairly big deal with a fantastic pro field and some of the best armatures in the country.
Personally I had a great day out. The best part of the race for me was how I felt. Very in control. I had that, I can’t crack myself if I tried, type of feeling. And while I fell short on a few goals I had set I am not going to dwell on it. Over all this was my best performance this year. I have gotten a lot of questions on my power file from the bike. So… here it is. The min. or 2 at the end can be cut off.
Norm power was 291. Felt great. Pretty evenly paced, despite the steep climb in the first half. I am a mear 155 lbs now so my speed up the climb was probably pretty quick compared to most for the wattage. Would love to hear from any others regards to watts and time/ speed. Especially for the later half of the course. Wondering how aero I am??
I was very impressed with all who were out there racing. Scott F. seemed to have a spot of bother on the run but at the turnaround I realized that’s all it was, a spot. He was right behind me still! Steve Johnson ran a 5:51 pace on the 10k trail run. I can’t even fathom that speed. Erin Finnegan, Amber kardosh and Brent Schoeb did great races despite the altitude, heavy training sch. and some long car travel. Evan Macfarlin, killer race, Max Lawler very nice work. Christiana Glenn continues to rock here AG and looked so strong on the climb. Great chat with Heidi smith post race,
The guys/gals at the beer tent, you rock!!
Sorry to the guy I passed on the right on the turn going into lefthand canyon. And to the riders who I squeezed between them and that van on 63rd st. everyone handled them selves well.
The race was run so well. A great event!

Friday, June 18, 2010

The Race Across America

Amy Xu’s RAAm has come to conclusion. After making the time cut at the Mississippi Amy and her crew regrouped, Amy tock a “long” 6 hr. rest but after remounting her bike fell over again in the first 5 minutes of riding. Her race is done. She is sad but still proud of her accomplishment in finishing over 2 thirds of the hardest race in the world on her first attempt. She and her team have raised thousands for Camp Odayin, a center that helps kids with heart defects. You can see Amy’s journey here:
Amy’s did extremely well in her first bid at the solo race. In the end saddle pain and an inability of get enough calories in her system is what lead to her demise.
The RAAm quickly becomes a task of dealing with issues you never saw coming, a ride so fatiguing you can’t begin to train for, a task more mental and logically challenging than one can imagine. I am very proud of Amy and the entire crew.
I have asked myself may times in the last 12 hours what could I have done better. Should we have done another big block of endurance training, more neurological work? More on the bike strength work? While I have come up with a few areas I would like to improve on in the training there are more areas in the general preparation for the whole trip that will make a bigger difference. No sooner did I start thinking about these topics was I called about coaching another RAAm racer for 2011. I hope I am up to the task.
from the crew chief:
"Your expertise, encouragement, and example of humbleness was a huge asset to our success. RAAM solo is a unique beast. You can prepare for every possible situation, and still have challenges you could have never imagined. RAAM is not just about bike racing. It's a race that challenges team work. Time management, problem solving, and spirit. Amy... See More is an athlete that has a spirit of life that is infectious to everyone who touches her. Her race, along with you're help, has taught us as individuals how to dream big, and LIVE everyday! Thank you for everything! Michelle Pearl Team Strong Heart Crew Chief"

Monday, June 14, 2010

Its only June and the EK Endurance Coaching team is racking up results so fast I had to cut this list short!
Congratulations to all the athletes. everyone has been working hard, having fun and growing as an athlete overall. This is by far the best season we have ever had! below are just some of the results so far this season!

RACE DATE Athlete RESULT notes
du-athlon 2/27/10 Brent S. 2nd AG
frostbiteTT 3/6/10 Peter S. 1st!
metro TT 3/7/10 chris carr 1st / P-1-2
metro TT 3/7/10 Perter S. 1st cat 4
99 crit 3/13/10 Peter S. 1st cat 4
cu crit 3/13/10 Josh w. 3rd cat 4
ing marathon 3/21 Jared B. 4:05 first marathon!
cu oval crit 3/21 Beth jordan 5th
Branchbrook Series 3/27 matt doyal 3rd cat 4
mesa TT 2/27 chris carr 2nd
mesa RR 2/28 chris 2nd
mesa RR 3/28 Jennica 1st
crit 4/4/10 chris carr 3rd
cherry creak TT 4/14/10 peter Sch. 1st (cat 3)
Crit 4/5/10 matt doyal 2nd
haystack TT 4/17 peter sch. 4th
turtle pond 4/24 claire L. 4th
Gila TT 4/30 nathan west 9th
falcon ground speed 5/1 coach eric 2nd OA
calvins 12 hr challenge 5/1 claire L. 1st.
Dear trail RR 5/16 Luis R. 1st
independence pass HC 5/22 chris carr 1st
hugo RR 5/23 Luis R. 1st
Sunrise Tri 6/5/10 Coach Eric 2nd OA
prologe rocky mt om. 6/11/10 peter S. 1st

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

EK vs. IM Canada, The Run

Training for an Ironman run can be a bit daunting, to say the least. A marathon is a huge accomplishment never mind swimming 2.4 miles and riding 112 right before!
As I mentioned earlier my swim and cycling racing will be more aggressive. That s just the way I race. I will train these 2 areas aggressively as well. The run will be raced and there for trained less dynamically. A goal race pace of 8:30 per mile is the main one objective. Running, while very difficult, has some simplicities that go along with it.
~it’s mostly neurological. Unlike cycling, running does not demand a large “strength ‘ or “power” component.
~pace and rhythm don’t change much. The Ironman Canada course has a few long hills but nothing over whelming steep or repetitive, making it conducive to sounds tech. and rhythm.

By what’s I mention above one would think. “Ok so, just run” no need for fancy intervals, terrain changes, etc. but we all know that would be a risky way of doing things at best. The goal is be able to run 8:30’s with (as I say) “a broken leg and your hair on fire” .

Key points. My training strategy and things to consider:

~Race day execution is key: While I talk a lot about having a strong bike and swim I still cannot swim and ride above my ability run post swim/ bike. Sounds simple yet we still see race day execution as the biggest mistake athletes make. Lynn’s IM USA was a success in large part due to her race day execution. Her run being her weakest sport we decided that it could be overcome by a perfect swim and bike execution. Ie. The right pace/intensity, being steady on the bike, and fueling properly. Read the report to see how that worked.

~Trail running: This will be a large component to my run training. Its more fun. The soft surface will speed up recovery time, increase my frequency capability, and strengthen stabilizer muscles and connective tissue due to the increased lateral movement and erratic rhythm of trail running. And the trails in boulder, CO are awesome!!

~Frequency is key: we all know that we adapt to training load over time. One workout will not make us stronger, better or faster. Rather the accumulation of all our training and preparation does. yet, especially with running, we see this concept disappear. “I’m running a marathon so I need to do a 22 mile run to make sure I can do it”. Why? Because one run will give you the ability? Many running training plans have this mega long run a few week out from race day. What if you couldn’t do it? Would do another one of these runs 1 or 2 weeks out? I hope not.
ALL your training should give you the confidence, not one particular workout. In Lynn’s training, and many, many other athletes we have worked with, running frequency has been the corner stone of triathlon run training.
Imagine you do a 2.5hr run on the weekend. How long will it take you recover from that run to the point of quality training again? Now imagine you do a 90 minute run. Because this “long” run is more manageable yet still past the threshold of what is considered long we get a good training adaptation but can now do another 90 minute run Tue. and maybe another Thur. that’s 4.5 hours of running! And we haven’t even added in short brick runs, etc. This will keep quality up and injury at bay. Come to think of it may be I’ll add in some intensity into a “long” run… 2 workouts in one! Ohh dear, getting complex now! now were taking about some serious weekly run TSS!!

~Get “good”, efficient: Running has a significant tech. and mechanical aspect to it. I will get some coaching here. See frequency above…

~Brick runs: these will take place a lot! Not so much for the training aspect of it (although that will be great) but I prefer to do my training as one workout/day when possible. This has a few specific training aspects to it.
1. Running off the bike is tough. This will make me better at it.
2. Tri. is an “endurance” sport, longer workouts will work more endurance adaptations.
3. I lose focus after a workout. Training in the PM is tough for me. I like having my workout completed before concentrating on work, etc…
4. The riding and running from my door is great. I don’t need to go anywhere to start my training. This makes brick runs high quality as well as convent.
This is not always possible. With masters swim times, work sch, etc. many people cannot do this aside from the weekend. My sch. Is flexible there for I will take advantage of this as much as possible. You should too.

3 main running workouts, in order of usage:
1. Zone 2-3 runs. Less than 1hr. many brick runs will be in this category.
2. Zone 2 “long” runs. 90 minutes will be the staple long run duration. There may be a few runs longer.
3. Threshold work. The team group runs usually has me in tempo to threshold (zone 3-4) for a few miles. Shorter races will have me running hard and we may sprinkle in a few all out 10k’s and threshold interval work.

See you in Canada, 8:30’s or bust!!
See EK vs. IM Canada the bike HERE.
And hwo is Swim training is going HERE

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Tucson Training camp Re-cap!

The official 2011 training camp trailer.

well every one is in. Home and licking there wounds. the good thing is no one really got hurt.
many miles were ridden TSS racked up, new skill learned and friends were made.

Our last 2 tips for you.

From a Male camper:
"Use lots of chamois cream! I can't TAINT it any more!"
I am still laughing from this one!!

And from Faith:
"make sure your equ. is ready to go!"

This is a great one that i did not think off. Particularly if you are doing an early spring or winter training camp with a bike focus (like this one). I just saw a pic of someones broken stem. It was rusted and looking down right nasty. Too many miles on the trainer led to salt corrosion from sweat. Whoever this was they are lucky they didn't get hurt or hurt some one else!
make sure your gear is top notch!
~Training camp is no time to be dealing with equipment!

and on the note here is the Bonus Number 6 tip.

~Rest up!
This goes along the lines of our article on "Training in Training races".
yes its just training. no need for the 3 week peaking phase but make sure you are rested and ready to get the most out of your training camp experience. Normally we sch. a recovery week or phase just before with a 1-2 opener days before the trip.

5 Must know tips for riding and trainig in Tucson , AZ

1. Bring 2 tubes on every ride and a spare tire in the tool box.
the roads are rough and there are shape rocks/ glass everywhere! it pretty much never rains so if something lands on the road it stays there. make sure your tire are in good shape before you leave!

2. Wear sun screen. even if it's not "hot" out., the sun is strong and you will roast your winter skin fast if your not careful.

3. Ride Mt. Lemmon. what ever it takes this is a must do! don't miss it! check the weather! it was 40's on top, almost 80 in town! so bring some warm clothes!

4. Eat local! Pic below of no-name burrito place. in the parking lot of the Safeway on st. Mary's right by the Riverpark inn. this place is GOOD! cheap and they are very nice!

5. Race in the Tucson Bicycle Classic. even if your a Tri guy/gal doing some mass start racing is great for your cycling ability! the race is fun, safe, and challenging yet not to hard for an early season event.


In the Safeway parking lot on saint Mary's near the Riverpark inn!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Tucson Training camp day 5

-Gates Pass

Today was gona be a nice "easy" ride but the wind made sure that was not the case. It was rippin!

With different departure times we had a smaller crew but the wind made for a great impromptu to group riding skills session!

more to come!
~Final "training camp tips"
~Camp re-cap, what next year has in store
~And our top insider tips to training in Tucson!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Tucson training camp Day 4

Mt Lemmon is simply a must do! Maybe one of the best rides you will ever do!
absolutely fantastic!

A great day today. Sunny and 70's in town mid 40's on top. a bit a wind to slow us down on the climb but not bad. I did about 230 watts avg. 240ish normalized for 2:17 of climbing.
pretty great! the climb is much like the mt Evans climb but with more oxygen. the climb never gets very steep but rarely flattens out. pace yourself well kids this climb is here for the duration!

Some pics and our training tip!

The Descent

Almost home

some more clothes... and maybe a break...