Wednesday, September 30, 2009

1 1/2 hour bike, 20 min run

I had to spend a little extra time out on the bike today. I just rebuilt my Specialized Tarmac road bike and I'm rediscovering how much I love it. After a summer riding nothing but my tri bike and the occasional mountainbike outing, sitting on my road bike is like sitting on the couch eating a bag of chips. I forgot how comfy this damn thing is! I can't wait to put in some 6 hour rides this winter on it! Kinda like meeting up with an old friend.

The bike included some impromptu sprints-generally when I had to get out of the way of the idiotic drivers here on Long Island. The never cease to amaze me.

The 20 mins I spent running was actually 25, done with one of my favorite clients. We did some slow running, but I pushed the pace with him a bit at times and ended the run with an all out half mile.

I probably did a bit more today than my coach wanted me to, but I couldn't help it. I love this triathlon stuff. I've been training at this point for almost an entire year and mentally I still get excited every day for training. It's time to take a break and I know my body needs it. It'll be nice to finsish with a strong race this Sunday, kick back for a couple weeks, and then start again.

I hate this tapering stuff...

I really hate this tapering stuff. Maybe it's because I'm locked in emotional torment now and need an outlet for my feelings, but I hate just sitting around. On a day like today, when I don't have a lot of work, it's excrutiating. I've tried reading, playing with the dog, watching tv, even writing out bills! and nothing seems to work.

I have a dinky litte 45 min spin to do on the bike and I'm gonna go for a 20 min jog after that just to keep my legs loose. I'm beginning to wonder if tapering for me is even a good thing at all. I feel sluggish and my mind is all hazed over. When I'm training 20-30 hours a week I feel sharp as a tack. Tired but sharp. I guess Sunday will be the test.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

1/2 hour swim

Easy swim today. I don't wanna say that I felt awesome in the water, but I certainly didn't feel bad. At this point of the season, I'm seriously thinking hard already about what I want to accomplish this off-season as well as next year.

Basically, I want to kick ass. To do that, I need to keep improving in ALL facets of this sport. Luckily, there's not one thing about it that I DON'T like. I love swimming, I love biking, and I love running. Any questions? From what I can see, I need to get faster in everything, but in particular swimming. I'm a great athlete, and I think my mind is in a good place. I know I suck ass in the water, so I'm willing to seek help. I'm happy that I've grown out of the part of my ego that thinks that I'm the best at everything and no one can teach me anything. That's burned me in other sports and it won't happen with this one.

Swimming will be great this winter and I expect nothing but the best of myself. My motivation is still at a super high level (even after a long season). There's just so much to learn, both about the sport and about myself, that I'm so excited with each day I get out there and train. With discipline and hard work I can definately succeed.

Tomorrow is an easy spin on the bike and I think I might add an easy run in the afternoon as well. I don't wanna do too much, but I just feel like running.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Rest Day

After a good week (and block) of training, it's time to take a day off. In looking at my numbers from last week, I realized I hit about 60 miles running. This was highest milage I've hit for the season for any given week of running. I've run more hours, but I don't quite think the distance has been there. I'm excited to see how this will effect my race performance this coming Sunday.

Today it will be all about recovery. Nutrition is gonna be a focus, as well as wearing my Skins most of the day, and getting in some foam rolling and TP massage kit work. My hip has been feeling a bit tender so I'll focus a lot on that.

Otherwise, I think I'll just try to chill today. Maybe catch up on some reading or go see a movie(as long as it's a matinee 'cuz I'm cheap!). Looking forward to feeling my body recooperate this week!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

16 mile run

Ok, it was suppossed to be 16, but I did 15 instead. I was to warm up with 2 miles, run 6 hard, 6 harder, and cool down for 2. I get antsy when I get out there, so after only a mile warm up I was ready to go.

When I did this same run Monday, I decided to do it on a flat loop, wanting to keep my rythm together the whole time. Today, though, I threw that loop out the window and did it on some of the really hilly roads in my town. Port Jefferson is probably the hilliest area on Long island, so it's great to get in some solid strong running training. I think this is why I'm a stronger runner rather than a faster runner.

So the run was good. Monday this run killed me, but today it wasn't that bad. I felt better as the run went on, and really started to kick by the end. My final six miles was much faster than the first six, and I was really able to put it all on the line by the end.

On another note, I'm excited that my diet must be right. During this run, I didn't need any extra fuel, and never came close to bonking. I know it's not a terribly long run, but I think the added fat in my diet has had a positive effect on my training and endurance. Just a thought.

So it's on to the last taper of the year. In my first "real" year of triathlon, I'm happy with the gains I've made. I've taken a lot of steps forward and I think I have a lot more to go. All in all I can only say that I've dedicated myself wholy to this sport for about 3 months. Life and other things stood in my way before. Now though, after some refinement and serious soul searching, I think I'm ready to take the next step forward in my journey. Probably the best thing that I've learned, and the best thing I like about this sport, is that you really have to look yourself in the mirror at the end of the day. There is no lying to yourself. You can make excuses until your blue in the face about why you didn't do this, or you didn't do that, but in the end, if you're healthy and motivated with a little bit of talent, you will be able to see the fruits of your labor.

I truly love every last thing about this sport, from the sexy bike (and girls!) to the wacky people (myself included) that I've met so far. I'm so lucky to have stumbled upon this crazy sport.

The last training day

Today is the last real training (for racing) day of my season this year. I have a 16 mile run to do, in which 12 of those miles will be at some sort of a tempo pace. To say I'm unmotivated to run is an understatement. I'm tired and sluggish, and can make every excuse not to get out there today.

I've undertaken mundane tasks like rebuilding my road bike in anticipation of the winter, trying to get out of the run today. I knew this would happen, and even tried to rope a buddy of mine into running with me. When he bailed on me this morning it took even more of the wind out of my sails.

So here I sit, with only about 2 hours of training left to go, and I don't want to get off of my lazy ass. Even writing this is a form of procrastination.

Ok, I'm just gonna go and get up and do it.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

5 hour bike, 1 hour run

Good day of solid training today. Had a 5 hour bike-which had to be broken into two parts, 2 hours with clients, 3 hour with my buddy Adam-and than a 1 hour run.

The bike was pretty uneventful, just a seriously EASY day. No worry about going too fast, or concern about distance, just straight saddle time. I was feeling a bit tired going into today, so I think I got in somewhere around 88 mile for the 5 hours-Told you it was meant to be an easy day!!!

The run was more of the same. Averaged somwhere in the neighborhood of 8 min miles-Just getting time on the feet.

By the way, if you're reading this and keeping up with each day, (as I imagine only my mom is-and probably only to figure out where I am all the time) you'll notice that I said yesterday that I was planning on doing my long tempo run today. Well, being that my good friends at the National Weather Service said that I should expect heavy rainshowers tomorrow, I decided to to my bike and run today, saving the tempo stuff for tomorrow. I love running in the rain, so tomorrow should be nice.

Friday, September 25, 2009

10 mile run, 3 hour bike

Had a great 10 mile hilly run today. Basically hit every steep climb in town, and then ran hard on the flats for a bit. I'm lucky to live on the hilliest part of Long Island, so finding hills for a hill workout is not a problem.

In the afternoon it was on to the bike for a nice and easy 3 hour ride. I've been riding so hard lately I forgot what it is to go for a nice easy ride. Everything was a bit slower and relaxed. Its nice to feel the power I have in my legs right now. I've never felt strength like this in my legs and its an awesome thing!

Tomorrow is another long tempo run. I have a feeling it'll be easier than the one last Monday.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Hour and a Half Straight swim

Today I threw the sets out the window. I had a planned 4000 yard workout to do, and I said "F" it! I've grown so sick of doing this set, and that drill, and blah blah. I just couldn't do it today.

I absolutely love swimming. I really do-it's just too bad I suck at it right now. I'm excited to work hard this fall/winter at correcting my weakness with a good coach, but for right now, I just needed to get in the water and swim.

So after a decent warm up, I just swam-and swam, and swam. I didn't really worry about yardage, sets, or anything much more than form and feeling good throughout the workout. I mixed in a few 25 yard kick lengths, but other than that, it was just moving in the water for an hour and a half non stop.

I feel energized from this workout and am happy I did it. Would my coach be happy about it? I don't know, but I imagine he would be. Training's gotta be fun right?

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

50 mile bike, 10 mile run

Good one today. For most of the bike I really took it easy. Dragged my buddy Adam out again to ride. LOTS of climbing for most of the 50, but didn't really turn up the intensity until about 5 or 10 miles left in the ride. Those were FAAAST and FURIOUS-All out effort. I honestly gave every bit I had left in these miles with no regard for human life-MY human life!

The run was a bit more of the same, but I did go out a bit harder. The start was a bit of a relaxed pace (around 7:30 or so). Again did a TON of climbing on this run and ended the last 6 miles around a pace of 6:30.

I'm fascinated by the fact that I just continue to get stronger and stronger the longer the day goes. I felt better running today than I did in Monday's long tempo effort-and my legs are still sore from that day! By the time I hit the final miles of today's run, I felt like I could hold that pace for a while more.

All along I thought I had speed and no endurance. Boy how things change...

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

2k swim

Really rough day today both mentally and physically. I woke up in a somewhat good mood, but as the day went on it only got worse. Just one of those days when my fuse was short. I got a lot of sleep last night, but I attribute the bad attitude to the effort I put in on the run yesterday.

As good as yesterday's run was, today's swim was just as bad. From the beginning I didn't feel like going to the pool at all, but after conferring with my coach, we decided to shorten the yardage. What was suppossed to be a 3k swim turned into a 2k swim. From there it was up to me to put out less than maximum effort on my interval sets, and keep it relatively low key. By the end of the 2k if I felt good enough I could go for the extra 1k, but if not, then no worries.

So the 2k was the end of it. I felt flat from my warm up, my joints ached, and generally my mood was shit. I got the yards in and that's the end of it. In actuallity, I most likely did a bit less than 2k, but I don't really care. One bad training day at the pool isn't going to take away the months of hard work that I've put in thus far. Tomorrow is another day and I'll make the most of it.

Monday, September 21, 2009

16 mile run

Sixteen miles today: 2 miles 8ish min pace, 6 miles 7:30 pace, 6 miles sub 7 pace, 2 miles cool down.

This was a tough one today. First 8 miles were hard to hold back. I was ready to go from the beginning. I did hold back though, and my average for those first 6 tempo miles was right on at 7:30/mile. The next six were tough. I held 6:30 -6:45 pace steady. I tried to run a mostly flat course to keep it honest. By the time the cool down came, I was more than ready to pack it in for the day.

I realized two things on this run. The first and most important is that I'm not the super strong runner I thought I was. Granted, I was running on tired legs, but at this stage of the game that isn't an excuse. Second, I'm tough. It took a lot for me to keep up the pace today, and at times I thought I would crack-but I never did. I believed in myself to the end, and never surrendered.

This workout was a great confidence booster. Although I'm not terribly fast right now, it gave me the confidence that I need in myself. Pain is tolerable. I think that's an important lesson to learn.

Run Today

Just getting ready to go out for a run. I'm always a bit anxious before run sessions. I'm not sure what it is, but it's time I relax. It's like I've never done this before. The feeling passes once I get out the door, but it never ceases to come on nonetheless.

Today I'm debating on where to run. It's an important workout, so I want to make the most out of it. I've given myself plenty of time to complete it today, so time won't be an issue. I think what I need to do is stop wasting time THINKING about it and just go out there and DO it already!

More later...

Sunday, September 20, 2009

To Rest or Not to Rest...

Ah the big question. I've always heard that you should save a rest day for when you really need it, and that training plans are written in pencil and not pen. Today, I'm a little sluggish from yesterday's long ride and run, so I'm presented with the question, "Do I suck it up and run a key run workout today?" or "Do I rest today, and run tomorrow (in effect on well rested legs), and kill the key workout?"

There are definately pros and cons for both points of view. Somewhere in the middle, my mind is telling me to rest for the better portion of the day, watch the football game, and if I'm still up to it later this afternoon, go out and run. It's only about 12 miles total running, and about only 6 of that are hard.

I figure that if I'm to rest until around 4pm today, that will give me about 22 hours of rest between my last session and this session. In effect, I will have taken almost an entire day to rest. I'll see where today takes me. At worst, I can always rest all day today, eat well, and head out tomorrow afternoon to run. At this point in the game I don't think it much matters, I only think my head is spinning with overthinking. I just wanna train!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Something like a 7 hour day today

Had a great ride with my new friend Rick, and a decent run following that. The bike was semi-casual. I really just wanted to get the saddle time in. I pushed the pace a bit (purely out of the "just wanting to" feeling) at some times, but chilled out at others. After 100+ miles I was able to come off the bike feeling somewhat fresh and ready to go.

Onto the run, we took it easy at first and soon I began to push again. I think the theme of the day was to go when I felt good, and to lay back when I didn't (which really wasn't all that much).

Now, there's something interesting I want to share. If you're EVER going to do a long ride followed by a long run, DO NOT eat nothing but Cliff Bars and Ensure while on the bike and then go run. The first five miles of the run were fine-and then it hit me. In so many words, I nearly crapped my pants. That's right, Mr. Running in No Shirt Tough Guy nearly had to finish his workout with a load in his shorts. Luckily the sensation passed (until I got home anyway) and I was able to complete the workout "clean".

So that was the day. Total was about 7 hours of quality training. Tomorrow is a nice long tempo-ish run and then football football football!!!!!

5 hour bike and 1 hour run

Up for work and heading out later for a 5 hour bike and hour run later today. Should be a lot of fun. I'm going out with a new buddy I've met through a local triathlon group. He's preparing for IM Arizona I think I'm preparing for life :).

Today should be a pretty easy day for me. I pushed the pace pretty hard Thursday, so today is a just getting the miles and hours in. Funny thing is that I'm REALLY enjoying the long stuff.

More later.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Swim-beats me how far...

First of all, let me say that I can't wait to see Zombieland. Ok, now that I've got that out of the way, my swim today was very basic. I don't think I swam more than 200 yards continuously.

I was lucky enough to head to the pool with a couple of friends. It's crazy how many things you think you do that you don't when you're in the water. I've been looking to tweak some things in my stroke, and having these two there was almost as good as it gets. They pointed out what I was doing wrong, what I was doing right, and what I needed to think about.

So, I let the yardage fly out the window and focused on nothing but proper technique. It was tiring, but by the end of the session, I was starting to come around.

There's a swim coach that I'll hopefully have the opportunity to work with a bit over the last couple of weeks before my last race. I don't know how much it'll help at this point, but we'll see.

Pushing Big Sleep

Pushing big sleep after pushing a big gear yesterday was great. I just got back from an hour spin with a client and my legs feel fresh and good as ever. Usually I find I'm a bit sluggish from a big effort workout, but today I'm feeling good. I'm not saying I could do the same thing again today, but I'm just sayin'...

Today is a 3500 yard swim. I used to look at these as daunting tasks, often psyching myself out before I got in the pool. Today I feel positive about the workout and plan to just get in the water and let the yardage take care of itself. My swimming is nowhere near where it needs to be, so I'll just take today as it comes. If I decide to spend more time on technique and less time on yardage, so be it. At this point, I doubt I'm gonna gain any aerobic advantage from swimming alone.

The recovery from yesterday really excites me. I was absolutely toasted after the workout (even partially falling asleep when standing), but with a good nights sleep and some solid nutrition, my body responded very well.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Race Simulator-75 mi bike, 7 mi run

Today was a good day. My head was clearer than it's been in a while. I felt pretty this morning, and was excited going into my workout.

Started the ride conservatively. I no longer have that "kill it from go" attitude that I've had before. I realize that what I've choosen to do is a long race, and a lot can happen in it. With this has also come the realization that I get stronger the longer I'm on the course. My body has switched from being all power and speed to more of an endurance machine. I mean it's still powerful, but there's much more sustainability within.

So the ride was good. Met up with my buddy Adam and pretty much killed it on a relatively hilly route. On the flats I was up near 26mph, which I'm happy with. It felt like a good pace and I could hold it well. The hills were what they always were, and I floated up pretty nice. Overall I rode well.

The run was a bit tough. I've been running well lately, and this was no different, but it was tough. Being that it was a race simulator, I obviously wanted to simulate race conditions. I imagined I had just come into T2 with the race leader and had gotten out ahead of him on the run course. Basically I ran like I was being chased-and it worked. Managed to hold a 6:30 average for the 7 miles. Not lightning, but I'm happy.

Off for a shower now and some free medicine (i.e. sleep!).

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

1 and 1/2 hour swim today

So for the time I spent at the pool, there wasn't a ton of yardage, but for the most part, a lot of positive things happening. My main set consisted of 1000 yards. It was suppossed to be alternating 200's, changing drafting parters at the end of each 200, but being as I have no friends :) to swim along with.... Ok, well that's not true as my good friend Kasia came along to do her own swim, but she didn't want to draft with me so that doesn't count.

I've taken a different approach to the swimming I'll be doing for the rest of the season. While I had a solid main set today, I'd like to focus around those big sets at improving my stroke even in the smallest bits. I know that sounds obvious, but I really need it. I just hope I'm doing the right stuff and not putting myself further in a hole. I "feel" faster, so I guess there's something to that.

Up for tomorrow is a nice 75 mile ride followed by a 7 mile run. This is to be a race simulator of sorts on the bike, with a 30 second-faster-than-race-pace run. I've really loved running hard lately, so this ought to be fun.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

1 Hour Run

Great run today. Started with a 10 minute warm up, 40 mins tempo with hills, and finished strong with 10 minutes of some HARD hill repeats. I really killed myself today. My goal was to get rid of some of the emotional dealings I have going on, as well as get in a solid run. I'm still disappointed big time with my race, mostly because I didn't prep before the race properly. I'm seeing more and more in the last two days (after thinking about my convo with my client) that I set myself up for failure at this race. Some of the emotion spent on today's run was from the disappointment in myself for doing this. It's over now and time to more on. As Lucho often says, I'm just gonna try to be better than the guy I was yesterday. 'Nuff said.

Change of Plans

Ok, so I'm scrapping the swim today. I'm not having a great day, and staring at a black line for an hour is not really what I need to clear my head. So, after consulting with the big man (coach), I've decided to do a trail run instead. I'm swapping today's swim for the run I was to do Friday. It's a hilly hour run that I will do on my favorite trail. Being in the woods really calms me down, so thats what I'll do today. Hopefully I'll get in a good run and a good therapy session at the same time. Let's see....


Up for today is a 3500 yard strength swim workout. I'm not real excited to get to the pool today, but I can't say thats not like any other day. I REALLY need to work on my swim. In looking at the splits from Sunday's race, the only difference between myself and a podium spot was the fact that my swim took 5 minutes longer than the 3rd place finisher. That's a LOOONG time to make up in an olympic race.
As excited as I am for my final race of the season, I'm even more excited to get some rest out of the way in October and kill myself with swimming this winter. I've already talked to my coach about it, and I'm pretty sure I'm gonna have some good swimming instruction to look forward to this winter.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Good Advice

So in describing my race yesterday to a client, she gave me some really good, albeit unexpected advice. I've been working with her for a few years now, and we know one another well, so I give what she says a good listen.

In so many words, she said that I'm afraid of winning. At first I was a bit taken back, saying to myself, "I've won races before, that can't be it", but soon her explanation made sense. Being that both her sons are swimmers, she takes a lot of interest in my races. The reoccurring theme in all my "race reports" to her, seem to be that something either the night, day, or week before went wrong. Either it was a girlfriend thing, not getting enough sleep, drinking a couple beers, etc. The major point she made was that I seem to sabotage myself before the race even begins. I work hard and train my balls off (my words, not hers!) and go ahead to ruin it with a dumb decision in the last 12-24 hours before the race.

After giving it some thought, I realized she was right. I think in an attempt to trick myself into relaxing the day and night before a race, I approach it as if it's no big deal. In effect, I take myself out of the game before I even begin.

I think I do this for two reasons. First, I believe it will allow me to perform better and be less of a headcase on race day. Interestingly, it actually has the opposite effect. And secondly, I think that on a subconscious level, I do this because it's a built in excuse. In other words, I'm afraid to "not be good enough" on any day, so I build in these "events" before the race to have something to blame a poor performance on. What I need to realize, as she put it, is that I have all the tools and all the talent. I'm good at this, and can be even better. I need to approach the final 12-24 hours before a race just like I do the 6 months before a race. Professionalism all the way. After the race is the time for beers and pizza, not the night before.

I've always thought that I wasn't afraid to fail. I always thought that failure was an option because it's through our failures that we learn to be better. It's an easy thought to have, but what really matters is whether or not we truly believe that. I honestly believe that the best athletes, performers, etc. are the ones that have no reservations to fail. Sure it sucks and it's definitely not the goal, but if it happens, so what, try again-and again, and again, and again until you achieve what you set out to do.

The saying about Benjamin Franklin is so cliche, but it's right. In developing the light bulb, he didn't fail thousands of times, he just discovered ways NOT to make a light bulb.

Failure is only failure if you don't try again. I'm not gonna be afraid to try again.


Yeah, it's here again-the dreaded beginning of the week. At least it's football season and there's a game on tonight. Otherwise it would be sooo depressing.

After a pretty good weekend (by no means a restful one), I'm not at all ready for the week. Today is going to be an easy spin for about 40-60 mins just to loosen the legs up a bit from yesterday. Interestingly, I have no soreness whatsoever in my legs. This is either an indication that I'm super fit, or didn't go hard enough yesterday. I think it's an indication of the latter. I just didn't come to race yesterday. My result was still great however, but I really could have killed that course if I'd been there with my game face on. Oh well, no excuses. I knew when the race was, and I knew what time it was going to be...should have prepared a bit better.

I think I'm gonna take "The Meat Saw" out to the trails today. Something about being in the woods really just relaxes me and lets my mind go-something I really need right now.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Mighty Hamptons Race Report

I'm not going to go into much detail today. The whole thing can be summed up in just a few of sentences. First, I was super flat today. I didn't have much in the tank. In fact, I was actually sleepy when I got to the race site. I've been a wreck all week emotionally and I think it took a bit of a toll today. I'm not making excuses, but just sayin....

Secondly, it's SUPER OBVIOUS that I desperately need to work on my swim. In a race that's as short as an olympic distance race, the swim can really make or break you. I didn't get beaten by better cyclists or runners today, I got beaten by guys that can swim better than I could. I can no doubt hang with ANY of the guys that beat me today cycling or running, but when it comes to swimming, I'm out of my league.

I'm excited though because throughout every race that I've done this year, I've learned so much. I can take away positive things from each and EVERY race, and I feel that is a huge thing. I've gotten better and faster and there's no doubt that I've only touched the beginning of my potential. I have talen and I have work ethic. I even have time on my side so if I continue to work and do the right things, I'll get to where I want to be.

I'm looking forward to continuing to go hard for these last few weeks of the season and then enjoy a bit of a break before I get back to business. This winter will be a focus on swimming and base training. I need to get my aerobic engine tuned, and I need to work that swim. I feel with those two things I can take a step up to another level.

Friday, September 11, 2009

30 min swim

Good swim today. Not great but good. I've actually felt like crap for most of the day and I'm blaming it on the start of football season last night. Actually, I'm gonna blame it on the Brooklyn Brewery Local 1 beer I had last night while watching the game. I know beer is not a good thing for an athlete, but I gotta live a little, right? Whenever I do have beer, it's usually one or maybe two bottles/cans at the most. I happen to LOVE beer (and good beers at that), so holding myself at 2 is discipline. I don't believe that one or two beers has ever effected my training, especially with all the sleep that I am now getting.

So I drank the beer last night, not realizing that it was 9% alchohol (as oppossed to the usual 4-5% that most beers are. I only had a pint but it put me on my ass.'s the beers fault.

The swim was uneventful, just a half hour, mostly of drills and some 50 yard sprints. I'm happy with my swimming, but I know it's still a weakness. I really want to be a complete triathlete and not specialize in any one thing. With that, I feel like my cycling and running are close-perhaps with cycling holding a bit of an edge-but my swimming needs to speed up a bit. For a half iron race I'm around 30 mins, but I know with some good work this winter I can get much faster. I've never had a swim lesson and intend to get some over the winter with a capable coach.

So thats about it for today. On a side note, I think it would be irressponsible to not recognize the significance of the date. On September 11, 2001, I was in college and sitting through a boring Geology lab. As word came through that we had been attacked, my the girlfriend and I headed out to my parents house. Being that we were only about 18 miles from the towers, it was absolute mayhem on the roads heading toward Eastern Long Island. I can't exactly remember the ride or how long it took, but I remember being numb. It was the closest I've ever come to an out of body experience. I remember not being able to even eat (which was HUGE for me as I weighed 250lbs at the time). It was the worst day of my life.

In the coming days, after heading back to school, I remember that we could go to the roof of the University Library and see the smoke from the towers. Being so close to ground zero was surreal. It was a living nightmare.

Many people were effected in many different ways by this event. Many people I know lost loved ones in the attack. Those, like me, fortunate enough not to have lost any family members on the day were effected in different ways. For me, the attacks of September 11, 2001 took from me the last of my innocence. It showed me the evil and hatred that lives in the world. September 10, 2001 was the last day of my old life.

I do have to say that there is one positive thing that came from this unfortunate day. I can remember that everywhere I looked, people were helping one another and actually being nice to one another-not an easy task in New York! Patriotism was at an all time high and we seemed to forget about the small, stupid stuff that gets in the way in our everyday lives. People looked for the humanism in one another. Life slowed down for a bit and we pulled together. Mostly, we all looked at one another for what we were. Money and status didn't matter as much-we were all just humans. I haven't seen anything like it since.

May we never forget those that perished AND those that helped. People gave everything so that others could live. Even the people on cleanup and recovery crews are still paying through illness and discomfort resulting from being there. May God bless all these people.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

1 hour bike ride

Today was a 1 hour ride. After about a ten minute warm up, I rode for about 40 mins a little less than Olympic Distance pace, then backed it off for the last ten minutes nice and easy. I never really felt snappy today. I was a bit fatigued from yesterday, so I didn't have that "super rested" feel like I did yesterday. Either way, I still have plenty of time to relax and chill out before the race sunday.

I got bib no. 13 at the packet pickup. I wonder if this is a good sign or not. Interesting to say the least. I'm not very superstitious, but it still feels a little weird. Should I wear it upside down? Is that legal?

Not really much else going on today. I just can't stop looking at my new bike-totally love it! I'm psyched for this winter and riding the hell out of it. Oh, and thanks to Lucho, the name for the bike will be "The Meat Saw". With such a badass name I HAVE to ride it into the ground! Gonna be fun.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

1 Hour MTB Ride, 20 Minute Open Water Swim, 20 Minute Run

Ok, so somewhere in there today I forgot that it was my week to taper. I guess it's ok to go with it if I'm still feeling fresh as a daisy right now after all of it. Besides, It's really not a lot considering the volume that I put in last week.

I'm very happy with the way my body has responded to the extra volume. In this rest/taper week, I feel stronger than I have all season. I'm sure there's so much more that I'm capable of once I get everything right. To me it seems pretty simple at this point. Train and rest correctly and you get stronger-get stronger and you go faster. Very plain and simple.

As I've said about a billion times over the short course of life of this blog, I'm going completely for broke with these last few weeks in the season. If I continue this trend, I really believe I can hit a home run with my last race.

I believe in me. I believe I can be great. I believe in myself no matter what anyone else thinks. I believe in me.

1 Hour MTB Ride

I diverted a bit from my taper today to play with my new toy. I took the new 29er out for a spin today and couldn't get enough of it! What an amazing bike! It's like the perfect bike. I had just about no trouble climbing (other than my lack of technical climbing skill on a mountain bike-I'm sure that even if I had a full carbon, full suspension bike I still would have had to dismount on some of the climbs), and more fun on a bike than I can remember having in a looooong time.

Don't get me wrong, I still love my road bike and tri bike, but there's something about being alone in the woods (either on a bike or running) at a slower pace that just makes things seem so simple. It's great just to be out there and hear nothing but the trees around you as the wind blows. No cars. No big trucks. No cursing drivers. Nothing to rattle you. It was one of the most therapeutic rides I've ever had. There will be quite a lot of mountianbiking for me this winter.


Kinda discouraging start to the day. Nothing involving training, just work. There are days like this and there's nothing you can really do about it. Just keep your head up I guess.

I'm excited to try out my new bike. Being that it's a taper week though, I don't want to ever exert myself (as I have a tendancy to do!), so I think I'll just take it easy today. I have an easy 20 minute run planned for today, and maybe-JUST MAYBE, I'll take the bike to the trails for an easy spin. There is some great single track right down the road from me, and if I'm conservative I can keep it relatively flat, so that shouldn't be too bad :). I also wanted to head out for an open water swim, but we'll see what happens with that.

It sucks having so much time and not using it to train. I guess this is how I should feel, and I'm psyched that I am still excited about triathlon after all the training I've been doing. That's probably the best indication that I'm well rested and doing the right things with recovery.

Should be a good day!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

30 min swim

Nice and easy today. I'm working the taper pretty hard this week. Coming off last week's effort, I feel super strong and very well rested. This is truly an amazing feeling. I can't imagine if I had been this rested all season what would have happened...oh well, live and learn.

Probably the biggest thing I've learned about myself in these last couple of weeks is that I really do like the long distance/long day stuff. I had been very intimidated by the sheer number of hours laid out by my coach, but having done them I have a new found love. If you slow down a bit, you can really up the volume in a HUGE way. Most importantly though, I really didn't need to slow down all that much. Even on my six hour ride this past saturday I averaged about 19mph. I mean, I was going really easy and to have that number out there really amazes me. This whole Ironman thing has something to it!

During the middle of this season, as I was getting about 4 hours of sleep per night, I thought that I was doing the wrong thing in trying to tackle the half iron distance. My plan at the beginning of the year was to kill 70.3's this year and take if from there. Well, with a couple of sub-par performances (5:06 at Rev3 and 4:53 at Timberman) I've got one shot to get some redemption at the end of this year with the local Mighty Montauk Half in the beginning of October. We'll see what happens.

So it's taper this week, race an olympic on Sunday, train hard and long for another week, taper the next, and race my ass off for the last time this year. Then it'll be take a break, gain a couple lbs. (haha, only a couple!), and get ready for some REAL training this year. I've gotten just a glimpse of what it takes to get to where I want to go, and I want it REALLY BAD! More than ever at this point! Like I said, I'm all in now. I'm going for broke and I don't want to have ANY regrets.

Oh, and before I forget, I got a new toy today!!! For a while now, I've wanted to get my hands on a singlespeed 29er mountain bike. I got a cheapie from Dick's last year (yeah, I know, I bought a bike from Dick's...BLASPHEMY!!!), but to be honest it's not really what I was looking for. So recently, I got the opportunity to get exactly what I wanted from the local shop here in town. They hooked me up nice with a Gary Fisher frame and some great Bontrager and Shimano components (see pic above). I can't even begin to deal with how simple this bike is. It's like a big kids BMX bike. I took it for a spin today and it rides like a dream. Climbs well, and cruises nice. The only drawback is that it accelerates like a Mack Truck, but I absolutely love it! There are many hours ahead for me and this bike, and I'm sure the winter will be a lot more fun with this beast!

Now the only question is what name to give her. I name all my bikes, and since I treat them with care and respect, they get women's names. My Trek TTX tri bike is named Susan, but this bike needs a more "butchy" name. Something like Brunhilda. Let me know what you think!

Monday, September 7, 2009

Rest Day

Sitting around mostly today. My legs feel heavy and fatigued, but not sore. I'm still SHOCKED at my training this week. This has been the most conistently I've ever trained. It was a good week of work, but I think the real secret was the amount of sleep I was able to get.

In reading my coach's blog,, he mentioned that sleep is "like free medicine". I couldn't agree more. Nutrition is a huge aspect of the game, but I'm starting to think that sleep is even more important. I believe that you're body is smart enough to sort out the good from the bad when it comes to food. That is to say that we're able to get the most out of WHATEVER it is that we put in out mouths. Now, obviously the better quality of the food we consume, the MORE we will take from it, but even with crappy food, our bodies will take what's availible.

By no means do I think that nutrition is not important, I'm just emphasizing how vital sleep is to the equation.

On another note, I'm starting to feel like a Lycan when it's changing over from a human to a beast. I've been watching Underworld a lot, so bear with me. As some of the lycans change over in the movie, you see the changes happening to them internally first, then the rest of them change over. Throughout this last week, I've felt the inner changes happening. My heart rate was changing, my breathing was changing, etc. Now I'm seeing the outer differences. My body fat is very low (probably a bit too low-but I'll make up for that by eating some extra cals today :)) Also, my muscles and legs are tight. I'm ready for battle. Everything about me right now screams "Let's go!" Very exciting.

So Happy Labor Day. I'm gonna kick back, drink a couple Hedonism Red Ale's, eat some good food, and rest up for Mighty Hamptons this Sunday.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

And then it was done.

So I finished the training week still standing. In fact, I feel better than ever. I'm shocked at how much my body was able to do this week, and I'm happy that I'm still hungry for more. Honestly, I wouldn't be oppossed to heading out for another swim, bike, or run right now. To me this says 2 things: 1)Most importantly, I didn't overcook myself with intensity. In the short history of my time in this sport, I have a habit of trying to hammer every workout. Long course racing, as I've learned, isn't about that. If you want to be successful, you have to know when to push it and when to lay back. I've been reading a lot (as well as told by coach) that when pros have an easy day, it's ACTUALLY easy. Now, that's not to say that they dick around in their workouts, but rather I believe it means that they gauge their intensity appropriately. When it's time to go hard, you go hard. When it's time to go easy, you go easy. 2)I'm not made of glass. This week was an important confidence booster. I CAN handle a 30 hour week, and I'll do it again. With the proper rest and attention to recovery, I'm able to do a lot more than I thought I was capable of doing. This feels great!

So that's about it for now. Tomorrow is a rest day and I intend to use it as such. I was going to add another swim in there tomorrow morning, but the boss ( says "no" so it's just rest. Besides, it's a good chance to spend some time with the family-haven't done that in about 5 years...

Almost there...

I'm in between my bike and run session and feeling pretty damned good. I didn't have any caffiene this morning as I wanted to see how it would effect my training. I've been getting more sleep than ever recently (8-10 hours a night) and it's really paying off. I used to live on coffee, but now it's not so much of a necessity. I managed to get in 90 miles in 5 hours with a SUPER easy pace. Again, heart rate averaged about 140-145. Also, I mixed in some good climbing toward the end so I could really make the most out of the day. Between than and some heavy wind we had, it was a good ride. Ok, off to run!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Half way up the mountain...

Finished the 6 hour ride today with close to 120 miles complete. Not a bad effort considering the pace was ridiculously easy, and my Heart rate never even approached anything significant-I think it averaged 141-pretty low for me. I'm happy with this ride for a couple of reasons. 1)It's the longest I've ever ridden in one shot, and 2)I left the ride feeling fresh and ready to run. Given that I'm focusing on the 70.3 distance for at least one more year, I really feel like this is a great marker to where I've gotten to on an aerobic level. I've got speed, now I just need to build up that endurance. Although I have 2 more races left on my calender this season (one oly and one 70.3) I'm looking forward to building a lot of base this winter. The pieces will really start to come together when I get my aerobic engine tuned a bit more.

Up tomorrow is another big 6+ hour day. The effort is easy, but the length of the day is what intimidates me. Everest will be summited tomorrow, and I'll have it with me for the rest of the year.


It's 6:30 am on Saturday morning and I'm awake before everyone else. I have to meet with some clients in about an hour, but soon after at around 10:30 I'll be heading out for a 6 hour ride. Between this ride and tomorrow's big day of 30 min swim/5hr bike/1hr run, I'm intimidated to say the least. This weekend is like my Everest of the season. It's really the last big couple of days that I have back to back and I sincerely want to make the most of it. I feel like this weekend could either make or brake the rest of my season. It's a big deal, but I think I'm up for it.

Friday, September 4, 2009

4k. Ok so it was a breakthrough workout.

I really kicked ass at the pool today. As a matter of fact, I've been kicking ass all week. If all goes to plan, I should end up with someplace close to 23-25 hours of training this week. Not only is that a personal best for me, but it blows out of the water any amount I've ever done before. The funny thing is, I've never felt better. Maybe this is the way I'm dealing with what's gone on in my personal life. I think its deeper than that though. This is PASSION. I've come up short on so many goals in my life I can't count them. This one will not get away. I'll die before I let that happen.
This is gonna be a good weekend. We'll see where it leads.

Dreading the swim

I'm standing in line at marshals right now dreading the 4k swim workout I'm about to do. Usually when I do this things turn out ok as far as the workout is concerned. I'm not saying its gonna be a breakthrough workout, but it'll get done. Besides, what else do I have to do today...

Thursday, September 3, 2009

3 hour run

Ok, well it was 2 hours and 50 mins, but including cool down, it was 3 hours. Great base effort today. It's ridiculous how good I'm feeling. I'm actually finishing workouts fresher than I am when I started them. There really wasn't a time today when I felt week, except some of those last hills. I'm sure there was a ton of climbing in this run today, but being that I'm not a Garmin Geek (ok I can't afford a good one!), I don't know the exact number.

The run took me all around and on all surfaces. There were some trails in there, some sand along the Long Island Sound, and of course plenty of pavement. There's a lot good going on right now including my state of mind. During the run I kept thinking about a line from "Fight Club". As Tyler Durden says, "This is your life, and it's ending one minute at a time." I kept thinking to myself, What am I doing out here? What am I trying to achieve? Are other people working as hard as I am right now? I won't share the answers to these questions, but I can tell you I was satisfied with my answers. Whatever it is I'm trying to do-either kill myself or achieve greatness-I'm going all out. There's really no reason not to. This is my life, and it's ending one minute at a time. What I do now, from this minute to the next, will have a profound effect on the rest of my life.

One last quote that I love from "Fight Club", also from Tyler, is when he says, "You have to realize that one day you will die-until you do, you are useless." Something about that makes the hair on the back of my neck stick straight up. There's gonna be a day, sooner or later, that I'm not going to be here. No one will remember me and no one will care. Just as those that came before me and you out there reading this, we will be nothing but dirt, six feet under, recycled into the earth (Or creamated or whatever you want to have happen to you after you die!). I don't say this to be morbid, but simply to state a fact of life. Everything that's here today can cease to be tomorrow. In realizing that, I have to ask myself, "What am I going to do with today? With this minute? With the next?" I do not want to have regrets in this life. I want to do everything to the fullest and have a kick ass time doing it!

I didn't mean to get deep, but I obviously had a lot of time to contemplate life and my goals while running today!

Tomorrow is a sweet 4k swim. It'll be nice to be off my feet for a day!


One of the biggest obstacles I faced this season has been eating. While most people have the problem of eating too much, and subsequent weight gain, I have the other problem. I've always been able to gain and loose weight quite easily. When I was competing in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu as well as fitness modeling, this was an asset. I could make weight or 'lean down' for a match or photo shoot pretty quickly. Needless to say, I've always been able to make myself skinny when I needed to be.

In starting with triathlon, I've learned that the name of the game is "eat, eat, eat"-at least for me anyway. Initially I had a few pounds to loose. I typically get a bit heavy during the winter months (220+ lbs). This was something I had to overcome this season in getting down to where I wanted be be for the summer-175lbs. In attempting to loose weight, I developed some bad habits, that had probably hurt me in the long run. I ate WAY too little, and tried to have every training day finish with me burning far more calories than I consumed. This is good to a point, but soon performance begins to suffer.

Until recently, I've almost been afraid to eat enough. I really think a large part of this is vanity. I've always liked to be the guy with ripped abs, muscular shoulders, and veins everywhere. It's only now that I realize it's one thing to "look" fast, and quite another to actually "be fast". So with that I've been eating quite a bit lately. Mostly good, clean food, but have even mixed some "junk" in there. For me, I believe it's all about getting the calories in. I have a super fast metabolism, and during previous long rides, I could feel myself wearing thin. I would often come back from training super depleated, and looking like I was about to go on stage for a bodybuilding compitition. For most of this summer, I walked around at 4% body fat-far too lean to be healthy.

The evidence for me has really come through in my recent training sessions. On my new "eat just about everything diet", my numbers have been much better and I don't finish my day feeling like death. I'm faster, stronger, and have much more power for much longer. I also find that I don't rely so much on nutrition while I'm riding as I had in the past. Sure I still eat and drink on the bike (had a nice slice of poundcake and a coke yesterday!), but I don't rely on it for that "boost" that it used to give me. I have a steady line of energy that keeps me going all day.

I'm excited about this recent discovery and it will be interesting to see where it takes me. I'm not concerned so much about those last couple of pounds, I'm only concerned with being strong and fast. In fact, in weighing myself this morning, I'm still at the same weight I was in weeks past, I just feel a hell of a lot better!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

4 Hour Ride

Had a great 4 hour ride today. Finished up with about 70 miles of wicked climbing. I kept the heartrate down as this is a base phase. A good point my coach made was that I didn't have enough long base days going into my last race at Timberman. In reality, I just didn't put in the hours to "race" for 4+ hours. This explains why I can go real fast in short races, but have faded big time in the longer ones.

I'm excited to follow his perscription of longer hours for two reasons:
1)He knows his sh*t so who am I to argue :)
2)I'm able to do it as I no longer have some personal obligations I was previously held to.

All in all I think it's gonna make a big difference in my last race this season, the Mighty Montauk Half Iron race in the beginning of October.

One last reason I'm psyched about these longer workouts is the fact that I always get a big boost in fitness from racing. Timberman kicked my butt, but in the week since the race I've noticed a huge improvement in fitness. Sure I hurt for a couple days, but I seem to bounce back at least 50% stronger than before. This is exciting and I hope I can hold onto this fitness through the last month of my season. My biggest obstacle will be to STFD (or Slow the F*ck Down). For this reason, my heart rate monitor will be my best friend.

I'm going all out in this last month of the season. There are no excuses not to do the right thing. Sleeping, eating, training, and working are the only things that I have to focus on right now. To some this may seem lonely, but to me it's heaven.


I love the fact that I'm actually sleeping now!!!! For the last 2 years I pretty much maxed out at 4-5 hours a night! I'm actually having trouble staying asleep, but for me that's just a sign that I'm well rested.

I don't even get that strong desire for coffee first thing in the morning-although I drink it anyway because I'm a champ! :)

Tuesday, September 1, 2009


Had a great swim today. Really relaxed and focused these days. It seemed more and more often in the days and weeks preceeding Timberman that I'd been draging myself through swim sessions. I didn't have much motivation in following that black line before Tman, but with a bit of a lacluster swim there, I thirsty for blood now.

It's awesome how great this sport is. At least for me this year, there have been plenty of second chances. I'm still new to this, so the learning curve is huge. After a semi-solid performance at Timberman, it'll be nice to get another crack at the distance in October at the Mighty Montauk Half. At the very least, I've learned a ridiculous amount in each race I've done this year, and the experience is something that you can't just learn through training. I didn't realize there's a way to race. It's not all about just pounding away. To quote one of my favorite movies, "The sh*t's chess not checkers!"


I'm starting this blog to get rid of all the bullshit I've had on my other blog. It's not so much that the old blog was fluffy and nice, but it was a bit haphazard. I didn't update it enough and it was sort of random in some places. With this blog, I intend on writing about my life and how it relates to triathlon. In the past weeks, triathlon has become a MAJOR part of my life and my biggest passion. Often I failed to dedicate a lot to it for various reasons, but now I'm going for broke.

I intend to update this blog on a daily basis, so please feel free to comment and come back every day for new stuff. In some ways it will serve as a supplemental training log. In others, it will serve to get my point of view accross.

I hope you enjoy my rambling, and continue to watch me progress in my journey in this sport.

Thanks for reading,