Saturday, September 29, 2012

Pre-Race: Superfrog

Super Frog tomorrow. Half-Ironman. (1.2 mile swim, 56 mile bike, 13.1 mile run) The last race in preparation for Ironman Arizona. 

I took it very easy this week. Not much different from the taper week during Ironman in November. It's amazing what a few less workouts will do for energy levels.

Packet pick up day. The day before the race, the calm before the storm so to speak. 

Wore my lucky hat today. Picture on the left. Yup, that's Grandpa and little Brennan. Not to mention it is Grandpa's birthday today, that can't hurt the luck either.

Ordered a few Team Cassidy stickers for the seat post of my bike. I'll let Jamie tell you what the numbers mean if she chooses. 
The swim tomorrow is two laps in open ocean, with a beach run to get to the second lap. A year ago I would have freaked out about such a swim. Luckily now I'm able to focus on it as just another swim.  

This race has a lot of history attached to it. It's just about as old as the Hawaiian Ironman and has always been attached to the Navy Seals (hence the two lap swim with a beach run and a lot of beach running during the half-marathon). Competitor Radio recently had a podcast with the Race Director. The ten minute podcast can be found here

Should be a warm one for San Diego tomorrow. Looking forward to it. 

PS: I'm gonna whoop Lance. When I beat him tomorrow Jamie owes me Sushi. 

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Week 16: Next week, Super Frog

A long tiring Saturday morning trail run, a 475 blood sugar following a pod failure on the weekend ride and some shopping for tires/nutrition getting ready for Super Frog Half-Ironman next Sunday. 

I don't think I could have been more tired following my Saturday run. I don't even have an excuse for that one. Simply tired. I decided to do the swim planned for Saturday afternoon with Jamie on Sunday and run errands instead for the race next Sunday. 

Errands included a new rear tire (never changed it out following that flat last race) along with the nutrition for the race. I decided to go with organic/gluten-free fruition bars instead of my own rice cakes. It frankly relieves the stress of having to make the rice cakes perfectly and making them in perfect diabetes carb portions. During the run however I will use my own gel. 

Following the errands it was off to the SDSU football game to watch Nik.  
On Sunday Blair and I went for an easy flat three hour ride which somehow ended in a 475 blood sugar. I can't even remember the last time I recorded something that high. In preparation for the Half-Ironman next weekend I had planned an easy fifteen minute run following the ride. After seeing the blood sugar I took my pod off (insulin pump) and jabbed my leg with 4.5 units then headed out for a 30 minute run instead of fifteen. Blood sugar post run; 99. Diabetes domination is what that is. 

Very easy week prior to Super Frog. 56 days until Ironman. 

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Week 15: The parity of masters swimming

I've told Jamie many a morning after swimming that a sociologist should study a Masters Swimming program. Masters is different than a club or collegiate program because everyone is now a full blown adult that fits two types of people (1) the has-beens that are in the fast lanes to the west or (2) people that were never competitive in swimming in the east lanes. The further to the east, the worse you are. 

This usually breaks the group into 3 parts; A, B and C intervals. A is fast, going on the 1:20 (that's per 100), B is usually between 1:40-1:50 depending on lane (that'd be me) and C is usually just 10 seconds rest. When a group is broken up like that you get these weird social dynamics that occur. Literally people can see their worth by how fast of a lane they are in. 

Here is where it starts. People don't want to admit to themselves how they can swim. Thing is; you can learn a lot about a person when they are half naked, gasping for air and pretending to be an Olympian with a real 9-5.

Let me first say that I'm not a "swimmer", nor will I ever be. I didn't swim growing up so I'll always be a slight outsider looking in. Not to mention I'm a "tri-dork". My ankles will always be tight, making my kick poor. My hips always sightly sore so they'll continue to drag at the bottom of the pool. 

What I have done though is worked my way to the west (slightly). Jamie taught me to swim and I've worked really hard at it. All those laps in the pool have lead me to create the parity of Johnny Swim Fast at a Masters Swimming program near you! 
Johnny's background
Every Master's program in the country must have a Johnny Swim Fast. He was most likely a good swimmer "back in the day", when he was 12 but now he's 40 with two dogs, a corvette and a mid-life crisis on his hands. He forgets he isn't that kid anymore and that it's time to give up the speedo.
A speedo, should only be worn if very fit and/or you know what you are doing. There are only a few reasons to rock the speedo. (1) You're just a fast swimmer. (2) If you've been out of swimming for awhile and are out of shape but still swim well, more power to you wearing the speedo. (3) Long distance swimmers look out of shape but they definitely know what they are doing so they can wear it. Johnny Swim Fast on the other hand, is neither in shape nor fast, thus should keep to the jammer. Board shorts with a watch would be even better.
Keeping Time
I wonder if Johnny Swim Fast simply can't tell time or really thinks he is that fast. Like the rabbit he is off too fast. On the first and second interval he is trying to keep up with the faster swimmers only to fade like a dying animal on the subsequent splits. By the end he looks around to tell who ever will listen "dang that was hard". If only he understood the coach was just trying to give him enough rest time to go hard on all sets. By the third lap he's splashing like that 12 year he once was.
The splash
It's hard sharing a lane with Johnny Swim Fast. The first couple laps Mr. Swim Fast only drifts into your side of the lane. By that third lap though, he's splashing like he just fell off the Titanic. He still has forward motion but instead of affecting only his workout, he's affecting everyone within "wake distance". The waves he creates are bouncing off the lane lines and wall like title-waves, destroying everything in their path. Not to mention he trys to do breaststroke randomly.
Now for anyone in the first few western lanes breaststroke is a beautiful thing. For Johnny Swim Fast it's more splashing. His breaststroke kick causes the worst wake of all. Worst part? There's no reason for him to be doing it! Our far east slower lanes sets don't call for this stroke at the moment but Mr. Swim Fast just decided to add it to see if he can smack anyone in the face or drown someone with the splash. Finally he comes to a rest waiting for the coach's next set.
Pay attention
By this point Johnny Swim Fast is looking around to see who sees his bright new Speedo that he looks terrible in. He sure as heck isn't paying attention to a word the coach is saying. The coach works hard to tell everyone the next set, it's a long one so takes awhile to say then Johnny Swim Fast has to ask... "Wait, can you say the set again, I didn't hear it". We know you didn't Johnny, we know you didn't. After the coach repeats he hears the set, finishes splashing some more and hits the showers like everyone else.
Don't talk naked
After the workout Johnny Swim Fast feels the need to leave the shower door open and talk to everyone that happens to walk by. This is actually very turmeric for all involved besides Mr. Swim Fast. No one is certain what he's talking about since no one wants to turn their head to listen. If everyone thought the speedo was bad, well this is...worse.
Body Hair
A bic razor costs 99 cents. Enough said. 
The spinner thing
After his shower Johnny Swim Fast walks over totally naked to the "spinner".  No one knows the actual name of this device but ones swim suit goes it, hold down the top and five seconds later it's dry. It's a miracle of science really. Well Johnny doesn't understand the miracle. He thinks more is better. Holding it down ten times until it's broken and no one else can use it. 

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Week 14: Fiesta Island Time Trial #2

Again, the ever trusty team co-captain of Team Cassidy awoke for another race. With Jamie half asleep she again helped sherpa my race bag to the second round of the Fiesta Island Time Trial in 2012. My legs slightly heavy from a 15 mile run the day prior I was excited to see my bike improvement over the February race.

Even with tight legs I wasn't disappointed. I was able to shave over a minute off my time from February (1:12 better than last time) and looking at my power numbers I increased my power-to-weight by over 13%. 

In the morning, I awoke with a slightly low blood sugar which is better than the two recent night time highs that have destroyed my slumber. After picking up my race bib and a good hour warm up Jamie and I made our way to the race start. 

Two minutes prior to the start, while I could feel myself starting to get amped my blood sugar was 136. Then race time. Below is a screen shot of the pacing.

Data; Yellow is my power, red is heart rate and orange blocks is elevation (you can tell the laps here). 
Lap 1: Felt good, just getting into it.
Lap 2: As soon as I rounded the corner to start the second lap I could tightness in my left leg. Must be from the running yesterday. Keep pushing I thought, keep pushing.
Lap 3: All down hill from here. Just push through. The leg now felt good. Keep pushing until the end. When the last turn came I started to give everything I had left which wasn't much.

I never felt I could go as hard as I wanted but in the middle of hard training I gave it all I could. Looking at my heart rate it was nearly 10-15 beats lower than I thought it should be. Even before the race during my warmup I told Jamie, "I can't totally get my heart rate up where I want it". No complaints though, just tired. I proved to myself I'm pushing a lot more power on my bike than I could seven months ago.

21 days until Super Frog (Half-Ironman). 70 days until Ironman Arizona. 

Monday, September 3, 2012

Week 13: The First Annual Labor Day Ride Weekend

Huge three day weekend of riding, a small bit of recovery swimming and some painful transition runs.

Day 1: Saturday
Three hours on the bike along the regular Del Dios/Elfin Forest loop followed by a recovery swim at the Boys & Girls Club in Solana Beach. 
Total bike miles: 49
Total swim: 2,850 yards

Day 2: Sunday
Three and a half hours along the coast with Kristian (Jamie's boss and owner of Pear Sports) followed by two hours doing four time trial loops at Half-Ironman and Ironman pace at an eight mile flat loop in Rancho Santa Fe. After the long ride I went for a long transition run of seven miles. I wanted to do 15k (9.3 miles) but I started to completely break in the heat. All I could dream about was putting ice on my head and chugging regular coke, none of which I had. 
Total bike miles: 102
Total run: 7.3

Sunday ride map

Day 3: Labor Day
Four hour ride on the 56 bike path then the Del Dois/Elfin Forest loop for the second time this weekend. I then went for a 5k run loop around Solana Beach. 
Total bike miles: 61.5
Total run: 3.8

Monday T-Run
The best workout of the weekend was the Monday T-run, the end of the weekend. A workout that could have felt empty, I felt strong. Over the course of the weekend I wanted to recover well and feel healthy during the rides. After each workout I took time for recovery with an ice bath and long stretching sessions. I also ate more food than thanksgiving using my overall daily insulin as a gauge. On Saturday I downed brown rice and potatoes as if it was the last food on earth followed Sunday by nailing a gluten-free pizza followed by more potatoes. 

Besides the post workout meals, I ate and drank more on the bike than ever before. All of which was real food, even my own energy gels, my favorite being the salt soaked potatoes. I wanted to consume as much as I will during a 70.3 or Ironman. My blood sugars were perfect, putting that together with the food consumption the riding, running and swimming feel great. With eleven weeks until Ironman this weekend solidified that I'm happy with where my fitness level is.

Over 210 miles (337 kilometers if you're into that) during the first annual Labor Day ride weekend riding. Future Labor Day weekend riding to include Eau Claire to St. Paul and back, San Diego to San Luis Obispo and Palm Springs to Vegas in the heat.