Saturday, February 27, 2010

Spain Day...I'm too tired to remember:)

This is such a ridiculously awesome training camp. After doing the 30k climb the other day, we got out for a five hour ride yesterday and I did a nice hard 45 minute run after. The mountains here don't allow for ANY flat riding, so even an easy 5 hour ride has upwards of 5000 feet of climbing. Simply awesome!

Today is another longish day I believe. We'll have to let the weather and the group dictate what we do. Some of the guys here are coming up on 20 days in camp! Amazing to think they've been training at this intensity for 20 days!!!

I'm going to post some pics as soon as the interweb:) begins to cooperate a bit more. Right now it just takes too damn long to upload them. Sorry...

Oh, and by the way, you can also follow the camp via John Hirsch (pro triathlete) on Check it!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Spain Day 3

The internet connection is a bit spotty here, so I'm sorry if you've been on the edge of your seat wating for my next post!:) I'll try to get some pics up by tonight, but I can't promise anything.

The training thus far has been nothing short of amazing. I've never imagined some of the climbs we've done here, much less the descents. Yesterday we descended for 10k!!! Nothing wrenches the back of your neck like trying to stay tucked and aero for 6+ miles of screaming down a mountain!

Europe is absoutely amazing! This is my first trip over and I'm positive I don't want to go back:) Of course I will (dont worry Shannon, I'll still be able to train you!:)), but this is like nothing else I've ever seen. The small towns we stop in a beautiful, the coffee is phenomenal, and the roads are immaculate! Even when we got caught in the rain on our first ride I was smiling ear to ear! Then a rainbow appeared over the valley to make it that much better!

The people training and running the camp are awesome! We range from pro roadies and pro triathletes to some really strong ameture athletes. Overall just a great fit for everyone to push themselves to the next level.

Today is a rest day with a swim this morning and a run in a few minutes. Tomorrow is the climb of a lifetime-the Pico de Veleta-30k of climbing featured in the Vuelta de Espana. It's gonna be a huge test and a great time. Apparently it's pretty snowy at the top!

I'll update (hopefully) tonight wiith some pics and video, but I can't promise anything. I might be sleeping!:)

Oh, and before I forget, this afternoon we're heading into Malaga to watch the Time Trial of Vuelta a Andelucia bike race. Should be a good opportunity to get in some sightseeing and watch some ridiculously fast pro cyclists in action!

Thanks for reading!!!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Spain Training Camp Day 1

Got into Spain yesterday and after a LONG travel day I think we're ready to train. I have to say that I'm already enjoying camp as the first thing I did when we arrived was to get a badly needed massage. Sitting on planes and traveling upwards of 13 hours, regardless of wearing compression tights, is going to take a toll on your legs. So, while everyone else headed out for an easy run, I headed to the massage table.

From what Ican gather of this place, it's basically an endurance athlete's paradise. Long dirt roads, mountainous terrain, and endless directions to go in. One word: Awesome!

The place/ranch/house/compound we're staying at is beyond ridiculous. There's a hottub, lap pool, kitchen, showers...generally anything you could possibly dream of as a triathlete. I'm really looking forward to getting things done around here!

Today is going to start with an easy 60 minute swim at the local aquatic center (it's still a bit cold for the outdoor pool), followed by an easy ride and an easy run. Just shaking off the travel a bit.

I'm going to post some pics and maybe some vids for today as well as detail some of my travel. Time to get to the pool!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Travel Day

Heading out to Spain today to take place in the Strong Like Bull Training camp. I've been looking forward to this camp for a while. Good people, good weather, and I'm sure a lot of good times that will last a lifetime.

Like everyone else going to the camp I'm planning on updating my blog either everyday or every other day. We'll see how that goes. Hopefully I'll have some good pics and vids to show as the 10 day camp progresses! Stay tuned for updates.

Before I leave I'm gonna get in a nice little ten minute jog with Lucky. Man, I'm gonna miss that little pup while I'm gone. Other than that, it's get the Skins Travel tights on and travel my ass off today! It's gonna be a long ride. Let's just hope the bike gets there when I do!

Friday, February 19, 2010

40 min run, 1:10 swim

It's really all coming together. My foot is finally good enough to run on on a regular basis, and my bike fitness is terriffic. Heading into the Spain training camp I really couldn't have asked for much more.

I ran this morning for 40 minutes very strong. I kind of did away with the Heart Rate monitor and ran by feel. My GPS had me hitting a 5:25 mile, so I'm thinking I'm feeling pretty good. Of course I didn't complete the mile in 5:25 (it was actually 7:02), it still felt great to get my legs up to speed without feeling pain in my foot. I'll continue to work on my self massage (i.e. foam rolling, TP therapy stuff, and the stick) tonight as well as stretching. This has become a regular routine of mine and I think it's really paying off. I never knew the value in it until I got injured...go figure.

In the afternoon I hit a swim with my swim coach. We did A LOT of work on my fly and it's coming along nicely. I've been powerful at that stroke for a while, but now it's becoming efficient. Also, I love how learning different strokes and practicing them has made me a much more powerful and effective freestyle swimmer. There's definately something to that "feel" of the water that I've seemed to find.

Tonight is all about packing for Spain. I've got to pack up my bike, get my laundry done, and take care of the last bits and pieces. I'm looking to travel very light, brining only the things I absolutely NEED! Shouldn't be too hard as I don't own much other than my bikes and running shoes:).

I'm going to try to pick up a camera tomorrow sometime before I leave so I can update the blog with pics of Spain...Stay tuned!!!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

95 min spin on the cross bike

Went out easy with my buddy Dan today on my 'cross bike. I'm really loving this thing. It's a great training tool to have with all the bad weather we've had this year. Today wasn't bad weather wise, but the roads are all slushy and mucky because of the snow melt we're having. It's about 40 degrees so the dumping of snow we got from out last storm is slowly melting away. I'll look forward to racing the 'cross bike a bit next fall, but that's so far away I can't even fathom it right now.

Dan gave me a great comment today. I'm tapering into the Spain training camp so I can really gear things up when I get there. Basically Dan said to me that he's glad I'm in my "easy" mode because it makes it possible for him to train with me. At first I thought nothing of it, but then I realized that the hard work I'm putting in is really showing. I train on my own 99% of the time so I have no one to compare it with, and my easy allows him to keep pace with me. I'm very flattered and truly appreciate something like that.

Riding the bikes so much this winter has made me only love cycling more and more. It'll be nice to get to Spain and really tear it up. Ten days of solid training is going to be a blast! I'm just hoping that the weather here in the states will begin to break a bit by the time I get back.

Tomorrow is a swim for sure. My swim coach had to reschedule out workout for tomorrow, so I'll get in the swim planned for today, tomorrow. Other than that I'm going to do another easy and short run, probably around 30 mins. The foot is feeling terrific right now and I want to keep the trend going. The more I run the more it seems to feel better. Good stuff!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Swim 30 mins, Run 30 mins

Took out a nice early morning swim today. I have trouble getting up for "recovery/taper" week workouts. In getting ready for Spain, my coach told me to "respect the camp". In otherwords, it's gonna be hard and I should be well rested going into it. I will do as told. If it's anything like what I've been reading from his blog and heard from the people that have gone, it's going to be tough but doable. I'm sure I could have trained into it, but I'm not sure that I'd get the best out of it. I'd probably be dead by the middle of the camp and that would seriously compromise my health and decrease the amount of "positive training" I got out of it.

So today, like the rest of this week is meant to be taken easy. I put in about 22 hours of training last week, and this week I plan to do no more than 5. With that comes the boredom I always feel when I'm not training a lot. The fact of the matter is, I've been resting well and my training plan has been put together thoughtfully. Those two factors mean that the 22 hours was really not even a stretch at all. Being creative with cycling in the crappy, snowy, and icy weather was tough, but physically my body didn't even bat an eye. It felt great to get out and train like I do in the middle of the seaons, putting in some big miles on the bike.

Ok, so I'm complaining a little bit, but it's just because I'm whiney that I'm not able to get out and do 5 or 6 hours on the bike right now. Not having all those exercise endorphins sucks and there's no way to get them without training. Ha, by this time next week I'll probably be begging for mercy:).

Anyway, I did 30 mins of easy swimming in the pool this morning, and plan on doing another 20-30 min easy run this afternoon. Tomorrow is an hour swim with my swim coach (which will be a little more than easy but c'mon, it's swimming). Otherwise, I'm getting everything ready for Spain (passport, euros, clothing, etc.) and practicing packing my bikebox. I'm so bored!!!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Rest Day

Deciding to take a complete rest day in prep for Spain. I pushed the volume a lot this past week (for this time of year) and there's really no use in trying to push more as I head into training camp. I had planned on getting up early and doing another short run, but when I woke up I felt a little sluggish, tired, and congested. All this is the early warning signs to me that a sickness may be brewing and I don't even want the slightest bit of ANYTHING to follow me to Spain. When I'm there all I want to worry about is training. I don't want to have to compensate for some stupid cold I brought from home because I was too stubborn to listen to my body.

The foot feels great this morning with no ill effects of having pushed it a little on the run yesterday. The runs for now are short, but as I said yesterday, they're showing me a lot. I don't have that uncoordinated feeling that usually comes from a running layoff. I'm feeling fluid and smooth. The only thing I'd say that isn't there is the specific strength. I can feel my legs get tired from the pounding that they're unaccustomed to. Of course that will come as my runs get longer, so it's not a worry.

Product Review!!!

Ok, so I got the Skins Travel and Recovery tights for my Spain training camp. I figured it'd be a good idea to wear something on the plane for the 13 hours of travel I have ahead of me. Also, I have always been interested in the Travel and Recovery specific tights and needed an excuse to buy them. If you're not familiar with the Skins line, they have several long tights for both cycling and running, as well as a pair of recovery tights that have an extension that covers the ankle and half of the foot (the part I've been having trouble with-from the midfoot to the heel). I have to say that I couldn't be happier with my purchase. I wore the tights after both long rides this weekend, as well as my short run yesterday. As well, I slept in them all 3 nights. Love 'em! I have to say that I do notice a bit more compression throughout the tights. This may be my imagination, or could perhaps be because they're new, but the foot feature really makes them comfy for lounging in. I'm sure I'll have more to write about during and after Spain, and I'll specifially detail my travel with the tights. My only fear going into the trip is that wearing them on the plane will get hot and uncomfortable underneath a pair of pants. I could, of course, go sans pants and wear only the tights, but I'm pushing my limits already with my ratty "terrorist" beard as it is. :) I do actually want to get to Spain...

Monday, February 15, 2010

35 min run

Nice and easy 35 minute run today. I slept in a bit to recover from the two long rides this weekend and woke up with the legs feeling just like new...well almost. Grant had a 2 hour and 30 minute run to do today, so I decided to do 15 minutes out with him and then another 15-20 on my own.

We started slow and my foot felt pretty good. I was careful not to do anything too fast too soon, and let the thing just warm up. I think in my old age :) I have to be careful to warm up proficiently-particularly in the cold weather we're having. In the past, I've never even considered a warm up. I just always sort of went out and got right to it. With this injury, however, I've found that not only is a warmup needed, but stretching both after a 10 min warmup jog and post-run work wonders for keeping my foot and calf feeling good.

After leaving Grant, I got out and let things fly a bit. My first few runs have been all about keeping things light and not testing things too much. Today though I wanted to see what I could do. I wouldn't push things too much, but just see if the legs would turn a bit. Happily, I was able to keep the HR decently low at somewhere around 6 min pace. My GPS even said I hit 4:47 pace, but I'm sure that was going down one of the gradual descents. Still, I'm happy I felt comfortable at good speeds.

The runs are short but they're showing something. I'll continue to work them up slowly in time and distance, especially while I'm in Spain. Things are looking good.

Oh, and one more thing on shoes. Today I ran in flats. I'm finding more and more when I run in less shoe my foot feels so much better. For me, too much cushion is really a bad thing. I've never liked mushy shoes and usually prefer more of a "road feel" in my shoes. The Asics flats I wore today were great. I'll try more and more to train in least amount of shoe I can handle. Just food for thought...
The picture above is from breakfast this morning. I've really got a great serial killer beard going. We make some great choices for breakfast dont we?

Sunday, February 14, 2010

6 hour ride

Yes!!! After being a little dissapointed about not getting 6 hour in yesterday (nonetheless I was sore for all the climbing-and we probably got more quality out of less quantity yesterday), I got in my 6 hours today. Probably a little less climbing today, but overall just a good ride. I finished with some hill repeats for a half hour at the 5:30 mark. It was great to still feel pretty fresh at that point in the workout.

I very happy with where I am right now. Regardless of not running, I feel that my overall fitness is very good. I'm leaps and bounds ahead of where I was this time last year. I believe the run will come along quickly now that I'm back into somewhat of a "normal" training routine again.

Tomorrow is a rest day and I'm toying with the idea of getting in a little more time on the bike. Nothing near what today or yesterday was, but it might just be a good idea to spin the legs for 90 mins-2 hours. If I'm totally toasted I'll probably just hit the pool for a bit. The rest of the week will be devoted to getting in a good little taper before the Spain training camp. Only a few more days now!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

4 1/2 hour Hilly Ride

Just got back from a decent 4 and a half hour hilly ride with my buddy Grant. I had really wanted to make this a 6 hour day, but due to some technical difficulties, we ran out of daylight by the 4 and a half hour mark. Sometimes there's nothing you can do about it, so it doesn't pay to get pissy about missing and hour and a half. Besides, for the time we missed we made up for it in climbing.

There were some longer sustained climbs, some short steep ones, and some rolling hills. It was a good day to work on climbing strength on the bike, and I think it'll serve both of us well as we head into Spain's training camp.

Tomorrow is 6 hours come hell or high water. I don't care if a freakin' snowstorm, tornado, and hurricane come it, we WILL get six hour in on the bike. 'Nuff said...

Friday, February 12, 2010

30 min run, 2 hour hill work on bike

Ran nice and easy for 30 mins this morning. I really had to hold back from going longer because I was feeling so good. The speed at HR is slowly coming back, and I can feel my body remembering how to run. Each run is getting progressively better and it feels nice. I have to be disciplined enough, though, to realize I need to take things slow. Overdoing it now could lead to more frustration and time away from running. Patience is key.

The bike was dedicated almost exclusively to climbing. What I lost in distance I more than made up for in climbing. I felt good overall and the extra work I've put into the bike as a result of my injury should make me strong this season. Spain will be a good place to test some of the work I've done this winter on some "real" climbs.

Tomorrow and Sunday will be the last big volume days I'll have before leaving for Spain. I plan on doing 6 hours of steady state riding both days. The past few weeks have seen me doing a 4 hour ride on Saturdays and a 5 hour ride on Sunday. The extra hours are really going to test me and hopefully get me some extra fitness heading into the training camp. I have to be careful not to overdue intensity, or else I feel I could dig a bit of a hole-not a big one, but a hole nonetheless. The HR monitor will be my best bud this weekend. Patience is key.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

3k swim...or something like that

I think I did 3k in the pool today but I can't be sure. I kinda wigged out and just swam really hard for a really long time to get out some frustration. I've been lucky that my training has been moving along well, but there are some personal issues that keep creeping up and biting me in the ass. It's nothing monumental, but it just sucks to feel lonely sometimes. Not to get into it, but since my last relationship, all I've done is train, train, train. In some ways this was to get through a difficult breakup. In other ways it was to get to where I want to get as a triathlete. With this situation comes good and bad. It's good to have so much time to devote to training, eating well (ha! well eating a lot anyway), sleeping enough, and just overall making traithlon my life. On the other hand, I don't have anyone to share my experiences with. There's no one waiting to see me when I come home. There's no one to take out to dinner. There's no one to go on an improptu weekend away with. It's really a double edges sword. I think though, when looking back at how triathlon effected my last relationship, it's going to be important to find someone that either shares my interest, or accepts the fact that I'm going to spend most of my weekends on the bike. Training 25-30 hours a week didn't go over very well with my last girlfriend.

This is all just flowing out of me right now, and I'm sorry if it's boring. It's just something I've been dealing with for a while and it has an impact on my life and therefore on my training. Some days are good, some days are bad, but there's always tomorrow. If I want to reach the levels I believe I'm capable of reaching, it's going to take hard work, determination, and discipline. Being single allows me the time and energy I need to devote to my passion. I'm not saying that I'll turn down an opportunity to be happy with someone if it comes along, but for now I'm mostly content with being on my own and doing what I'm doing. At least I have my dog, Lucky!!!

Tomorrow it's back on the bike for some hill work and a chance to put the running shoes back on! I'm so psyched to have regular running back in my training schedule-even if it is super slow and short! At least it's in there!


Woke up feeling like poop today. I slept a lot last night, but I believe I got a migrane in my sleep last night. I'm thankful when this happens because it keeps me from going through most of the pain and disorientation I get when I get them when I'm awake. Still, though, I wake up feeling like crap. I used to think that I got them when I trained too hard, or when I didn't eat enough, or when the seasons changed. Now, though, I'm starting to think that it's just a random occurnace. Either way, they suck, suck, suck!

I'm still doing my swim today. I have no choice because it's with coach Kerry. Depending on how I feel will dictate effort and tempo. Usually I feel better after swimming, so I'm hoping being in the water will take care of it. More to come...

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

4 hour bike, 40 min running

Really killed it today. Had the type of day where after I was done training all I could do was stare at the wall. I didn't even have the energy to eat. Super beat and super happy!

I knew I'd have to take advantage of not having work today because of the snow, so I slept in a bit, got up around 8, had some coffee and breakfast, then got to work. We got about a foot of snow throughout the day so I had to be a bit creative with the training. I decided the best way to go about it was to start on the trainer for an hour, go out for a 10 min run, come back in, ride again for an hour, run for 15 mins, go outside for an hour on the 'cross bike, come back in to the rollers, and finish it up with another 15 min run.

If you didn't follow that, basically I transitioned between biking and short runs for around 5 hours. I kept the runs short as not to overdo anything with the foot. Today is the first day that it's been absolutely and positively 100% pain free. Usually I can make it sore in some way just by moving it in a certain way or walk on it just right, but today I couldn't even do that. Very happy, very happy.

The biking, with the exception of the ride outside was a mix of zone work and big gear intervals. As much as I hate training indoors, I have found it to be a very important element of my development. The control you have over your workouts and intervals is invaluable. Not to mention you're really "on" for the whole time. There's no coasting, stopping at red lights, etc. It's all pure crank-turning work. I love it!

Also, riding the 'cross bike in the snow is fun! Most of the roads had about an inch of snow on them and I really got the chance to work on some of my bike handling skills. My 29er really floats over the snow and the wider tires make it almost as easy as riding on loose dirt or gravel. With the 'cross bike's more narrow tires, you really have to work on balance. Climbing was also a lot of fun. It's really a great training tool to use. I'm lucky I have it.

Tomorrow is a 4k swim. It'll be nice to be in the water again after beating myself down so much today.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

30 min run, 3k swim

I've been very productive outside of training the last couple days. Work and life stuff have taken up a lot of time and effort and I think it showed in training today.

I got out at 5am for an easy jog. Being that I haven't been able to consistantly run for the last few months, I've lost quite a bit of run fitness. No matter what you do, you can't train to run by doing anything but running and it was evident in my numbers today. Where I was running quite comfortably and fast at 144bpm, I'm now slogging along at an embarrassingly slow pace. I'm sure this will pass quickly as I get into more regular running, but I'm just astonished at how much difference a few months make. Not to mention the fact that I'm very fit on the bike right now. I guess it's just interesting to find that the fitness doesn't translate quite the way I thought it would. Nonetheless, I'm still very happy to be running again, even if it is for only a slow half hour at a time right now.

In the after noon it was a 3k swim. This sucked, plain and simple. Not only did I forget to bring my goggles and suit, but I just wasn't into it. Luckily I had my spare goggles in the glove compartment and an old pair of tri shorts in the back of the truck. I just couldn't get into the workout, ditched it, did some drill work, and swam some long sets with 100 IM's mixed in.

I'm starting to notice a trend in the workouts directly following a recovery week. It's hard to describe but I feel rested but sluggish at the same time. I guess it just takes my body a day or two to get back into the mode. I mean, I felt crappy on my run this morning, but that was to be expected. The swim, which has usually been very strong lately, was weak, but strong by the end (with the 100IM's). Either way it's great that I'm learning more about training, my body, and how different things effect me. It's all a journey...

Tomorrow is going to be very interesting. I have a four hour ride and we're going to be hit with the biggest snow storm of the seaon. I plan on getting out on the 'cross bike for the majority of it, but if things are too dangerous (i.e. crazy drivers on the roads-not the ice or snow), I may just hop on the trainer. Either way though, I'll be able to do it at my leisure as I'm not working tomorrow. I'm hoping for the best!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Recovery Swim

Recovery swim today. Recovering from what I'm not sure, but I definately feel much better having done it. I never look forward to going to the pool (or rarely I should say), but once I get in the water I love it. The only problem is that often the water really serves to calm me. This can be challenging when I'm trying to get up for hard sets. Just realized I used "get up" and "hard" in the same sentence...time to get my mind out of the gutter.

The rest of the day will be devoted to taking care of my affairs. I have to go to court today to take care of a 6 year old traffic ticket. Six years old!!! WTF??? Isn't there some statute of limitations on this thing? I probably could have killed someone 6 years ago and not go to prison for it, but when the state wants its money, it's time to pay the man I guess.

Work is slow today which is wonderful. I try not to make my Monday's too crazy as I'm usually recovering from back to back long rides from the weekend. Ok, maybe I'm just lazy and don't feel like seeing too many people Monday-take your pick.

Anyway, should be a good day and I'll devote some more time to my tight-ass calfs. I've found the best things are foam rolling and the stick. Some of the TP massage stuff is just too harsh and winds up leaving me feeling worse than when I started. I'm not saying they're not good, but for my particular injury they're not the best. Just sayin'...

Sunday, February 7, 2010

2 hour 'Cross ride

Nice little 'cross ride today. Like I said yesterday, I nearly forgot I had the cross bike until yesterday. Talk about missing out on a little gem of a bike. This thing is more awesome. It screams down fireroads, regular roads, and even pretty cool singletrack. It's just such a great, valuable bike. Glad I bought it.

I worked a little on my dismounts and remounts on some of the fire roads and have really been able to get them down a bit. Look out for me next 'cross season!

I also planned on running a bit today, but I think I'm still gonna lay off a bit. Today is the first day that the foot truly feels 100% good, and there's still no need to push it, especially during a recovery week. I'll rest it some more tomorrow (totally off), and start to work in some regular runs next week. The number one priority is to be ready to train completely healthy in a couple weeks at the training camp in Spain. I want to take full advantage of being able to focus totally on training for the time I'm there. Going in with an injury would be really F$%##k'n stupid.

Kings Park Psych Center

This post really isn't much about training, but it is related in a way. On my Sunday long rides, I've been riding past an old and abandoned psychiatric center a few towns over. It's a great part of the ride because not only is it spooky as hell, but it's got some great scenery and awesome climbs. Because of the rides and my love of history, I've beeing doing some research about the center. It was open for about 100 years, then closed about 14 years ago as part of the New York State "deinstitutionalization" act. While there were probably plenty of good things about this act, it did put a lot of people out on the streets and in sub par group residences. I don't know enough about the entire act to say whether or not it was better for these people to be hospitalized or not, but I find it terribly sad that many were forced out without proper care.

Anyway, the video I'm posting is about the hospital and was filmed while it was being closed down. If you have a spare ten minutes I'd suggest giving it a watch. It's interesting. Also, an interesting fact that I didn't know is that the town Kings Park (a rather large one here on Long Island) was a direct result of the psychiatric facility. Also, it has the record for most bars in one area of population in the United States. However, they all suck and there's only one that I've been to that was any good:). Enjoy!

For some stupid reason I'm not able to post the video directly on my blog-STUPID BLOGGER!!!
Here's the link instead:

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Easy spin on the 'cross bike

I had almsot forgotten about my 'cross bike. I haven't ridden it in a while, and have pretty much dedicated this week to mountainbiking. When I woke up this morning I felt like crap, so I bagged the swim, and decided to rest for the better part of the day. I commuted to and from work on the 'cross bike (totalling about an hour), but that was it. The rest of the day I want to focus on resting and working on my calf to get my foot better.

Tomorrow will probably be an early, easy 30 min run, followed by 2 mellow hours on the bike. Everything tomorrow is going to be steady paced effort to get the blood pumping again. Fingers crossed that the foot holds up.

Friday, February 5, 2010

My Birthday, 25 min run!!!, 1:20 ss mountainbike

Today is my birthday, but also has been the busiest day of my week. Originally, I had intended to play a little hookey from work and spend the afternoon at the movies, but since everyone came out of the woodwork and decided to ask me to train them today, I had to work. As it was, it worked out. The weather this weekend is suppossed to suck here (snow tonight into tomorrow am-LOTS of snow), so I decided to turn what was a scheduled complete rest day into a training day-albeit easy training.

I did a 25 min run in the am with absolutely no pain whatsoever in the foot. Getting PT on my foot and calf as well as working on it myself has really helped. I hesitate to say that I've turned the corner, but today was a huge step in the right direction. I'm going to run no more than 3 times a week for a little while, keeping them short and sweet. I'd say the best thing about the run today was the fact that it didn't really feel like I haven't run more than 3 times in the past 3 months. My legs felt coordinated and stable underneath me. I didn't wear a HR monitor or my Garmin because I really wanted to let the foot dictate my pace. I feared that I would get wrapped up in all the pace stuff, so I figured as a safety I would go "naked". Worked out well.

In the afternoon I went out for an hour and twenty minutes on the Meatsaw. I looooove mountainbiking. I got a bit frustrated today though because of all the stupid switchbacks on the trail. There's a ton of singletrack here, but I think the trail builders got a little too creative and tried to make a large portion of the trail overly-technical. I enjoy the challenge of tight and technical switchbacks with steep uphills and quick descents, but WTF??? These guys got all happy on the sharp turns and forgot that sometimes people like to just ride! If I wanted to go this slow and technical, I'd just get into freeriding and jump between cement staircases. It's just so frustrating. I really don't think they used the land they built the trails on properly. Maybe I'm just pissy because I ride a big ass 29er, but I love to rail long swooping singletrack and freakin' ride fast! I don't wanna get stuck twisting and turning 180 degrees every 25 yards! Ok, rant over.

Tomorrow is an easy swim and perhaps a 2 hour mountainbike ride-weather permitting. Actually, I'm gonna ride, snow or not, so it'll definately be a swim and ride day. I'll mostly likely take Sunday and Monday completely off to get ready to get back into some real volume again next week. I really want to go into my Spain trip in great shape and push very hard while I'm there.

Oh, and a big shout out to I just ordered my bike box and they really have a great company. Bill, the owner, is a great dude and really helped me out, promising to get the case to me well in advance of my departure on February 20th. Gonna really be a lot of fun! If you're in the market, give them business!!!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

1 hour swim with coach

Had a great swim with coach Kerry today and worked on some neat stuff in the water. It's nice to work with a coach for swim workouts (especially me, coming from a super duper non-swim background) because it adds so much spice to my workouts. Last year when I was swimming on my own and not knowing with the hell I was doing, all I ever did was freestyle. That just plain equaled boooooring! Some people can do it I guess, but not me. Anyway, it works well, I get a ton of good instruction, and my swimming is to a level I don't think I ever could have attained by continuing to work on my own.

Tomorrow is my birthday and it's a little bittersweet. I'll be turning 29 and had originally (since the summer) planned to run 30 miles for this particular birthday, hopefully beginning a tradition that would see me running my age +1 mile every birthday. However, with the foot just getting better it's not a possibility. It was a silly and meaningless thing to do, but I still wanted to do it just for fun. Oh, well...

Tomorrow is another scheduled rest day, but I think I might go out for an easy mountainbike ride. I've been toying with the idea of adding some gears to my singlespeed, but haven't decided. Maybe tonight I'll thow some on and see what it's like tomorrow. We'll see if the mood hits me.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

30 min easy swim

I slept in big time today. My alarm usually goes of at 4:30am and I typically get up and out of bed around 4:45am. Today the alarm went off, but I didn't get up until 6:05. I rushed out, jumped in the car, and nearly got killed on the way to work because of a thin layer of snow and ice on the road. Luckily, though, I was able to miss the car in front of me, and donut out of the way.

Anyway, got to the pool after seeing a client and swam really easy. I haven't been in the water since Friday, so it felt good to move easily. I spent about a half hour in the water, just moving the whole time, running through all the strokes and concentrating on form. Funny how when you don't swim for a few days you feel almost faster than you did before.

The rest of the day is dedicated to relaxing and taking care of a few "real life" things that have to be done. Going to the DMV, paying bills, etc.

Tomorrow is a meeting with coach Kerry, so I'll be back in the pool again, and if the weather is ok and I have the time, I'll try to get out on the mountainbike again for a little bit-just for relaxation sake.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

90 min singlespeed mtb

Did 90 minutes on the Meatsaw. I had only really intended to do about an hour (being that it's a rest week and all), but I got lost on the trail and wound up adding a few more miles. I really love mountainbiking. There's something about it that just makes me happy. It's comparable to the way I feel about running. It could be the adrenaline rush you get from bombing the downhills, or even the endorphin rush from pushing the singlespeed hard, but I just feel so good after a ride. It's hard, but it's rewarding. I can definately see myself getting into some Xterra races-maybe even as soon as this summer. I was looking at some of the races and there's one in Virginia that looks good. It's a few hours away, but I could probably crash with my best friend and his wife. I'm sure that decision will be up to her though.

The culture of mountainbiking is also a draw to me. I love being on the road, and I love the speed and distance you can cover on a road bike, but for the most part, the mountain bikers I've met have been some of the nicest and most welcoming guys around. Not to mention they usually drink quite a bit more beer than their "roadie" counterparts, so automatically they are good people in my book.

Fortunately I have some of the best, if not the best, singletrack trails on Long Island about 4 miles from my front door. It's probably nothing compared to other parts of the country, but there are quite a few challenges, and a lot of tight corners and steep climbs/descents that I'm sure rival other places.

Ok, I'm done with my mountainbike rant. Just wanted to get that out. The foot is feeling fantastic and I'm very tempted to run. I still think it's a bit too soon though, and there's really no reason to-yet. My fitness is building in the water and on the bike, so I'm sure the transition won't be too tough. Nothing trains your body to run like running, but if I'm careful in my comeback and start slowly back, I'm postive I can still run just as well, if not better, than I did at the end of last season. There are a lot of good things happening for me, and I intend to take advantage of it. This small bit of adversity has taught me a whole other side of what it takes to succeed at this sport. Lesson learned.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Rest Day

Today is a scheduled rest day. I feel great. No pain in the foot, and for that matter, no real pain anywhere. Feeling good mentally as well. I'm in a really good place with my cycling and swimming. The fact that I still haven't run has been more out of choice than anything. In reality, I probably could have started up this past week with light jogging, but I choose to let it rest a bit more. As well, this is a scheduled rest week, so I'm going to allow it to rest further. The fact is that it's only January (or "Crapuary" as my coach puts it). There's so much time until any real racing for me starts, so it's needless to be stubborn and push myself to hard. Now is the time to take advantage of what I can do, not always what I want to do.

The past couple weeks were great for my cycling and I'm happy with that. I really love to ride and there's nothing better than still being able to really crank at the end of a 5 hour ride. When I'm fit on the bike I feel like I can do anything. It's probably the reason why I'm feeling so good mentally right now.

So this week will be devoted to gettting back into a good sleep pattern (at least 8 hours a night), and getting my diet back on track. I've found that eating A LOT does wonders for me. I don't eat terribly, but I don't eat super-clean either. I look for calorie dense foods, and eat when I'm hungry. I haven't had a tendancy to hold extra fat, and I'm not terribly heavy either (180lbs @ 6'1"). My race weight, ideally, is 170lbs, so at this stage I'm just about where I want to be. I have a tendancy to loose weight as it gets warm, so I don't see this as a problem moving forward.

While I don't need a rest week physically, this comes at the perfect time as my super high motivation could derail me. This will be a great week to take care of my health and wellbeing.