Sunday, February 24, 2013

Another Good Week

Had a great week of training this past week.  12:40 of running, and 3:06 of riding.  Like always the riding was intense as I was feeling Thursday's workout on the trainer for a good 48 hours after.  Pulled down 24 miles for Saturday and 26 miles for Sunday this weekend and I am feeling great.

Lucho recommended it and I am going to endorse this as well.  I have been taking MAP for about two weeks now in conjunction with my workouts and I think it is making a huge difference my ability to recover and the quality of my workouts as a result.  The stuff is kind of pricey but I intend to use it from now till after the Leadville races are over.

This stuff is awesome!

I have also made a couple of other changes nutrition wise in the area of what products I use when training with positive results. 

Without going into a lot of reasons for it past saying it is a personal decision, I am not going to write in my blog anymore until after the Leadman series is over if even then.  I intend to leave this blog up if anyone wants to use it for reference or anything but for the next few months I will not be contributing to it or making any updates.

So that being said, I wish everyone an awesome spring and summer and a great racing season. 

Monday, February 18, 2013

Lessons Learned From Last Week

It seems that reading other posts and whatnot from other runners from this weekend a lot of the same trail conditions have been encountered.  ICE.  Lots and lots of ice.

Twice this past week I rode and ran higher in altitude than I probably should have and that is what caused me problems both times.  Snow I can deal with but ice is another issue altogether. 

I think for a bit I will keep my riding and running to the lower regions along the front range and stay away from the messy stuff higher up and wait till it all clears.  I took a spill coming down from Mt. Rosa last night and getting injured is the last think I need right now. 

So until the temps get to the point that it isn't just melting and refreezing every night I am going to play it safe and keep the training down lower. 

Sunday, February 17, 2013

A Wonky Training Week

I was all excited to get home tonight, download my Garmin, and admire all of my work and time spent training this past week. 

From a time volume standpoint I am pretty happy, 16:12:55 total for the week but when you look at the miles cycling and the miles running both are very, very low.  I figure it was just the nature of the workouts and for the present I will ignore the possibility that I am getting even slow than I ever imagined.

The duration total is cool but it is way out of sync relative to actual miles this week.
Today's run was a bitch up to Mt. Rosa.  The trail was very icy and since my dumb ass ate half of the buffet offerings at the Broadmoor this morning I was easily carrying several extra pounds on board just from breakfast.  Plus I was way more wrecked from yesterday than I was expecting and that played into it I am sure.

Bouncing around the idea of a 45 mile run for my birthday weekend and might do that on March 9.  Everyone else will be in Salida that weekend so it will definitely be a solo trip I am sure.  We will see. 

Glad tomorrow is a day off.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Mt Rosa

Ran up to Mt Rosa from North Cheyenne Canyon yesterday during the snow with Lisa.  It was probably one of the best winter runs ever.  Perfect temps, no wind, and the snow was light and dry. It was my first time ever going up to Mt Rosa, actually my first time ever going past St. Mary Falls or much past it in all of the time that I have lived here in Colorado.

All I can say is wow... this trail is amazing.  Lots of vertical gain and it gets up there in altitude really quickly.  Hell, even before you get to Mt. Rosa itself you cross into Teller county.  But seriously yesterday's run was a great learning experience and has opened my trail running and training options for the warmer months exponentially.

I used to run Gold Camp to Old Stage an then to Frosty's Park, etc, but I always hated running on Old Stage Road because it is the NASCAR driving wannabe highway anymore it seems... this way I can get to Frosty's Park, Almagre, etc, and not have to deal with the road anymore.  NICE!  Plus I plan to cache tons of water up in that area this summer so that will make it that much easier to stay out long on those runs. 

And the last great thing about this discovery and getting back there more easily is that pretty much within and hour of leaving the Lower Gold Camp parking lot I am up and running at over 10K in elevation.  Perfect!

All in all not a bad training week.  Not the highest volume but 6:26 of running and 5:06 of riding.  But I have to say that the two riding sessions, Tuesday and Thursday were not long but the repeats during those rides were insane.

Today is a day off of course and I am just going to enjoy that! 

Friday, February 8, 2013

It's like this and like that.

Just a lot of miscellaneous stuff to catch up on.  Overall it has been a decent training week so far.  Tuesday's ride was awesome which is kind of different.  Of course I felt Tuesday's ride during Wednesday's run which was okay.   Thursday's ride was a killer... I did 2:00 max effort hill repeats on Flying W Road from the elementary school up the hill with only 2:00 RBI.  Now those freaking hurt and I DEFINITELY felt all of that on my easy, super-easy ride to the bike shop this morning to drop the bike off for a tune up.

The bike... ugh, that bottomless pit of fricken money... The tune up is free but I am paying for getting the tires rotated, more sealant, new rear brake pads (cause stopping IS important) and there's about 90 bucks for you.  I figure on the average $100 bucks goes into the bike a month one way or the other.  I already know that I am going to be paying to put on new front rings, rear cassette and chain in a few months, as well as new tires, again...  I also still need to beef up my tool and flat fixing inventory that I carry around with me just in case.   Thankfully the shop gave me a huge discount on the drive-train components when I bought the bike and they are brand new sitting in boxes waiting.  I figure I will get all of that done in June.  I think.

Anyway, the point of all of this is that cycling costs a shit ton more than running.

I may have sustained my first cycling related injury too!  Last week I kept waking up every morning and the ring-finger on my right hand would be bent closed while all of my other fingers were relaxed. I could extend the finger but not before it would issue and uncomfortable "pop" in the process.  It seemed to mostly go away during the daytime but it was so different that I had to go see my MD about it.

He nailed it as "Trigger Finger" right off the bat when he saw it.  Surprised me because I didn't even know that was a real ailment.  Anyway, he gave me a big old painful shot of cortisone my my hand and when that finger stopped being numb and burning several hours later it did seem to be a lot better.   It is suspected that the weight on my right hand when riding is such that it causes pressure on that nerve and that affects the finger.  So there, cycling cost me another fifteen bucks possibly just for my co-pay. 

But the usual training ups and downs are still happening, and just fortunately right now things seem to be swinging in more of an upwardly direction.  I think that is mostly because the days are getting noticeably longer and it is just not that bitter cold so that helps the outlook on training.  Last weeks MAF Test on the track was an awesome confidence booster for me as well and Sunday night's run up to tree line and back down on the peak.  Of course I had DOMS for three days after running down but that is part of the game.  I can't remember the last time I ever got sore though.

This weekend, track workout tomorrow and then a long three-four hour trail run with elevation gain focus on Sunday.  Hopefully Dr. Lisa gets her priorities straight and comes down to run with me on Sunday.  She probably will as there is a trip to Kings Chef as part of the deal.

Next week is going to be NUTS and I am already steeling myself to get ready to get through it all.  I have business meetings for both of my companies, GFA and TriPeaks, as well as getting my taxes done, a crown re-done, Valentines Day, a Mardi Gras Party, Melissa's birthday on the 17th. (going to the Broadmoor for brunch for that)    I feel like I have missed some things in there too.  Like work, training and getting the bike back from the shop on Monday.  See... Nuts.

Ran across this video this morning while cruising for music on youtube.  Not only did Jenni take on and finish Leadville, she got Boston and the San Juan Solstice done in the same year.  AND, she did a R2R of the Grand Canyon too.  That's a completely solid season right there and seeing that video this morning was really motivating.  Her husband Corey did an awesome job putting the video together.

Everybody have a great weekend!

Thursday, February 7, 2013


These two plates represent my weight loss since December 3.  Imagine throwing these into a pack and going to do the Incline or a run and you can see just how significant of a loss it is! 
I did it!  I am officially down 20 pounds from December 3rd when I started my Leadman training and my Paleo diet.  Twenty pounds...

To be exact it is 20.6 pounds but who is counting, right?

This is the lightest I have been in as long as I can remember and it is exciting.  I am pleasantly pleased at how little body fat I have left and just how lean I have gotten over the past couple of months.

Has it been easy?  No... but at the same time yes.  Easy because for once I finally made the association in my brain that  in order to not gain weight or more importantly lose it, the quality of the food that I eat daily is actually more important than the quantity. Calories are not all equal, period.

Of course, nothing is more motivating for success than success itself.  The gains (or losses in this example) just motivate me to keep going on and reinforces my dedication to this process.  This is different than in the past because typically cutting weight has always been a tough proposition and even more so if I am struggling and the weight is not coming off.  That is when I typically would say screw it, hit the donut shop and drink a case of sodas and write it off to not working out enough.  WRONG!

But this isn't just a 2013 thing or a running thing.  This is a lifetime thing.  I feel very fortunate to have been able to arrest the cycle that I have been in for years and lose the body fat that had been plaguing me.  More importantly I have shed the visceral (internal / around the vital organs) fat that poses the most health risks and lends itself to liver and heart disease and is also a possible precursor to diabetes.

I've had a few slips... some cheat days but I have been well over 90% Paleo since December 3rd.  My training volume has not been anything super heavy so I can't attribute the weight loss to just that.  It just comes down to what I eat and how I eat.  Lesson learned!

As an added bonus, yesterday I started to mix some very light, and I mean light weight lifting into my daily workout regime.  When I say light, I mean light enough to not gain any bulk and light enough to not get hurt either.  I will keep that up through the year as well.  I don't want to lose much more weight and I want to ensure that I do maintain lean mass as much as possible, plus there are many hormonal and biochemical benefits to weight bearing exercise that I can benefit from training the next few months.

I doubt I will EVER be this light and I know I will never be as fast I was then but damned if I am not maybe getting close.  Bernkastle - Traben Trabach Half Marathon, West Germany, 1988.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

MAF Test

Today we got to actually see if all of the disciplined, controlled, heart rate targeted running (and riding) that I have been doing for the past two months is paying off.

I am happy to report that I think it is!

I went to the track at Manitou High School where I have not been since November to do this test.  It was a great day with only a light breeze out of the east.  It was not significant enough to cause me any problems.  The temps were comfortable and the sun was shining.  Great conditions for a day of running ten-plus miles on the track.

I started up the first three miles as a warm up and kept my heart rate below 135.  Of course the first mile or two the heart rate monitor was all over the place so I really had to go by feel until it settled down.  Regardless the first three miles felt a little tough and it made me wonder how much of it was impacted by yesterday's ride?

Then the next two miles things got more real.  Enough dicking around warming up... time to pick it up for the next two miles holding the heart rate at 135-145.  I felt like I had to step on the gas a bit to get the heart rate steady but once there I quickly became comfortable with the level of effort.  I did those two miles in 16:45 with an average heart rate of 138, so right in the safe zone... not too low and not too high.

And now for the test.  Run four miles with my heart rate between 135 and 145 and try to keep things consistent.  I wanted to tighten it up so I worked really hard to keep the heart rate above 140 BPM the entire time.  The results are pretty awesome I think. 

For the fist mile avg HR144, 7:55. Mile 2 - avg HR 144, 7:59. Mile 3 - avg HR 145, 8:02, Mile 4 - avg HR 145, 7:58.

Then I just did a cool down mile or so with an avg HR of 136 time of 9:22.

So all in all I think it went very well.  If I had to venture a guess, if I would have done the same test two months ago mile per mile, my times for each of the four miles of the test would have probably been up around 9:30 or even higher per mile. 

Twenty mile run tomorrow. I am going to run up to Barr Camp earlier than everyone else doing the Fourth Annual Anti-Superbowl Run then run down when everybody else comes down.  I will be curious to see what the trail conditions are like above Barr Camp.   Should be fun!

Definitely wore a rut into the track today.