Thursday, June 30, 2011

Becoming a swimmer...

Maybe.  I had my fastest interval session ever on Wednesday morning but still was getting passed by a guy in normal board shorts doing backstroke.  Ugh.  Okay so maybe the title should be "becoming a triathlon swimmer."  The Half Ironman on the 10th of July will really be a swimming benchmark for me.  Can I be close to my pool times with the wetsuit in open water?  My goal right now is sub 32.  The plan is to hammer the swim and bike and then cruise the run.  Of course, I have no idea if I'm in shape to accomplish this but it will be fun to give it a go.

The Half Ironman will be my first official event in the 40+ age group even though I'm still 39 for another 20 days.  They use end of the calendar year age for the event.  It's gonna be a little weird for me moving up an age group.  It's been forever since having to do that because I was cycling from 31 through 35 and cycling doesn't have age groups.  When I came back to running and then triathlon I was just in the 35-39 age group.  I'm sure it will take some adjustment but luckily the 40+ wave goes after the under 40 wave so I won't miss my wave.  I think it will be like those first weeks of every year when you start writing dates on checks oh wait that's so 90s.  Who writes checks anymore?  It's more like when you sign documents or type in dates on websites those first few weeks of January.

With the 4th of July 3 day weekend upon us, it really feels like summer.  Elena is in full swing at her summer camp and loving that she doesn't have to do homework when she gets home.  We got her report card and she got straight As for the entire year.  Great news.  Her reward is a trip to see Universal Studios in Florida, specifically the new Harry Potter area.  I figure it isn't too early to instill in her that you do well in your studies then you get rewarded.  I'm hoping this will save me some money when it comes to college as she'll maybe get a scholarship or two.  It's the perfect excuse for me to go to Universal Studios.  Sortof like buying her a Wii for Xmas so I can play it. Yes, I may be turning 40 but I'm still a kid when it comes this stuff.  Dads can have fun too.  In about 2 more years, she won't want to do anything with me because I'm her dad and she's too cool to hang out with her dad.  For us, it's super convenient to visit the Orlando area because we can stay with one of my best friends, Orion. I also used the travel credit United gave me from the big screwup on a business trip in March to fly free.

I continue to use the LoseIt app for tracking my calorie intake.  It's definitely interesting to see that having 3 chicken quesdillas is more calories than 3 chicken breast with rice.  Also skimping on ranch salad dressing because it packs some serious calories as well.  Overall, it's helping stick as much as possible with the no junk food diet.  Sure the occasional  bucket of movie popcorn and DQ blizzard show up in the log but it's not a daily item.  The only real negative thing with the diet is I think I feel full sooner.  Right now this isn't so bad but I can see it becoming a problem as I ramp up my workouts when the meat of the Ironman training starts to happen.  Stay tuned...

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

It approaches

I can feel it...I have just over a month left in my prime.  I hit the top of the hill next month, 40.  There are a few things to look towards after the 40th birthday.  First, I get to reset all my PRs in all my events.  Okay, I'm taking this even though technically it was written on any stone tablets.  I think it's a good way to stay motivated through the next 10 years to the oh so dreaded 50.  My running PRs are ancient history.  I'll never be close to 16:30 in the 5k or 34:10 in the 10k.  I don't have a true half marathon PR except the first half of my super blowup in 2001 on the Portland course where I hit the half at 1:19.  My marathon PR of 2:50 will also stand.  I just don't think I have 26.2 6:30s in my legs.

I'll be an official master's competitor at any event.  The masters category always seems totally stacked but it will be interesting to see if I can keep myself from slowing down too much and stay somewhat competitive.  I keep peeking at 40-44 age group times just to see and damn they are fast.  With this new age group, I have to change my Ironman Arizona information I think.  Since you sign up a year before the Active website automatically put 39.  I will miss starting my age with "thirty".  Wait a minute, isn't 40 the new rage these days.  Well maybe not but I can hope.  Anyway, I need to figure out how to get the information for Arizona updated.  I definitely don't want to be lumped in with those fast 35 year olds in the 35-39 age group.  Actually, it would make my goal of having the fastest run split in my age group really hard.

I'm trying to think of what I should do on my birthday.  It's a Saturday so I was thinking about doing some sortof interesting workout.  Perhaps 40 100s in the pool and then er 40 miles on the bike and 40 laps or 10 miles on the run?  That's a pretty short bike and really not long enough run either based on my training plan.  Should I eat 40oz of Doritos and chase them with a 40 of Coors Light?  Maybe cook a 40oz steak or get 40 chicken nuggets at McDonalds?  Although, I'm not sure I could eat a 40oz steak.  I think my stomach has shrunk with this LoseIt diet.  My weight is pretty close to the target and I know this because when Amber saw me this weekend she said I looked sickly.  The old saying if everything thinks your sick,  you know you're at the your racing weight.  Overall, my run should improve slightly with this new weight but I was really hoping to use it my advantage at the Rev3 Portland Half Ironman next month.  It was suppose to be a super hilly course but they couldn't get a road permit and now they've changed it a pancake flat course.  I was sortof bummed but sortof happy for the run at least.  Running like a demon and only being able to do a 1:35 just doesn't seem as satisfying as a 1:25.

So send me your suggestions for what I should do on my 40th..

Friday, June 10, 2011

LoseIt love it.

As I was surfing the Slowtwitch forums, I came upon a thread about someone wanting to lost 15 lbs by September.  I was bored so I decided to read it and see what people were saying.  In the thread, a person mentioned this cool iPhone app that they were using that helped them a lot.  Hmm...I figure why not give it a try just to see how many calories I was consuming every day.

The app is called LoseIt and it's totally awesome.  It lets you input your current weight and then your goal weight plus how much you little you want to eat er I mean how many pounds you want to lose each week and when you want to be your weight.  I punched in all my information and at first thought why not the default of a pound per week but well I would only get to eat like a pittance of food.  I dialed that back to a 1/2 pound per week.

Just lounging around and doing nothing I get to eat 2000 calories a day and the more exercise I do the more I get to eat.  Some cool things I found it is I only eat about 800 calories of rice a day.  That's awesome as I thought it was more like 1200.  A cup of broccoli is only 20 awesome is that.  I'm definitely buying a bunch during the next Costco trip.  I can really fill up on broccoli and perhaps cut down on my calories weakness for after dinner snacks.

A family bag of Doritos is 4500 calories and last night I was so hungry I thought about eating some.  Instead, I went to sleep.  Sleep is the best diet assistant I've found.  I'm in Oregon next week so we'll see how well the calorie intake goes.  I wonder how many calories a Dutch Baby from the Original Pancake House is.

If you're just trying to maintain or keep an idea on calories, this app is the greatest and definitely keeps you honest.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

The Fourth Discipline

It's almost like the sixth sense where if you fail to execute it properly on race, you will see dead people and in the end could end up like Bruce Willis and be the walking dead.  Race day nutrition.

You really have to figure out what you can stomach for the 10+ hours of exercise.  It's pretty daunting to think about. If I started the Ironman at the same time you arrive at work, I'm still exercising by the time you go home for the day.  Constant movement and you need to figure out what you can stomach during the bike and run.  During the swim, you're basically dry for 65 or so minutes except for the mouthfuls of lake water.

The bike is the easy part of the whole thing when it comes to nutrition.  You can easily carry all sorts of stuff and since you're stomach is pretty much in the same position you can eat anything.  There are all kinds of stories of people eating hamburgers, pb&js, cookies, muffins, bagels, and the obvious stuff.

For me, I use Infinit Nutrition. I built a custom formula in 2008 and it worked great so I'll be using that again.  The website lets you dial in everything and basically become a mad scientist.

The run is totally different story.  I'm very picky when it comes to the run.  It's taken a long time to really find the perfect nutrition plan for the run.  I do a 25mg caffeine strawberry banana Powergel every 4 miles. Caffeine on the run is awesome.  Of course in order to make it feel like an illegal PED, you have to abstain from caffeine leading up to the race.  For you hardcore coffee drinkers out there, it may be tough to do but man you can really feel awesome if you do.

Speaking of abstaining from caffeine, let's talk the daily diet.  I'm a total junk food junkie with my biggest vice being chips.  I absolutely love chips especially Doritos.  I can easily down a whole bag of Doritos post dinner.  Chips are complete empty calories so I cut all chips leading up to the Ironman.  I still down lots of calories but no chips.  In addition to no chips, I cut all alcohol.  So no beer.  Sure it sounds like the diet is no fun but it works for me.  Of course, post Ironman all this goes out the window.

Here's my current list of food I'll be gorging on November 21st:

  • Nacho Cheese Doritos lots of Doritos
  • Cheese puffs
  • Mini Reese peanut butter cups
  • Pretzel M&Ms
  • Ruffle chips
  • KC Masterpiece BBQ chips
  • Salt & Vinegar chips
  • Sour Cream & Cheese Lays
  • Numerous Egg Nog Lattes
24 weeks til the big day...