Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Last long ride before Challenge Penticton

I got out for one more long ride before this weekend's Challenge Penticton relay.  I did the Timber/Vernonia loop again but added in one more hill after Vernonia.   87 miles with 3400ft of climbing at 19.3mph.  Good, but I have to ride a lot faster than that next week!

Distance:87.24 mi
Avg Speed:19.2 mph
Elevation Gain:3,478 ft
Calories:5,733 C
Avg Temperature:81.7 °F

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Gresham Criterium

I haven't been racing my bike at all this year, but I got talked in to doing the Gresham Criterium today.  I've been doing this course for decades.  It was the state championship course for many, many years.   They had a 40+ cat 3/4 category, which I always like.  There were probably 25 guys in the race.   I felt pretty good and spent some time at the front in the mid-section of the race.  Tried to go for one or two breakaways that didn't work.  Then, sprinted for a prime but just missed it.  But, thankfully they rang the bell again and myself and one other guy (the guy who just won the prime) were able to stay away for the next lap and I was able to win that one.   Prize was $5, which I traded for a Ninkasi beer with my friend who had won that as his prize for winning a different prime.

I didn't position myself correctly for the final.  I blame that on just my lack of racing this year.  I was still able to get 7th.   I'll take it.  
I actually wore my HR monitor for a change.   I obviously worked hard for that prime and the finish!

My focus is now squarely on Challenge Penticton and then IM Arizona (and then the Boston marathon).

Friday, August 16, 2013

Bike fitness is coming

I wanted to ride LONG last weekend, but once again I wasn't able to due to scheduling with our caretaker.  So, I had just under 4 hours to ride.   I made the most of it and happened to be on a good day and was able to get in 75 miles with an average speed of 21.0 mph.    Really happy with that.  I can probably count on one hand the number of times I've been able to average 21mph on a training ride by myself.   I just wish I could have gotten in about 20 more miles.  I'm a little nervous about the 112 miles  and 6000ft of elevation in Challenge Penticton next weekend.  But, the last 15 miles are downhill, right?  

Ride stats:

Distance:75.25 mi
Avg Speed:21.0 mph
Elevation Gain:2,976 ft
Calories:5,247 C
Avg Temperature:72.0 °F

Monday, August 12, 2013

Halfway to Tempe

Last week marked the halfway point of my 28 week training plan for IM Tempe.  Yikes!!!  It seems like it is just around the corner.  Now is when I really start thinking about whether I have trained enough, too much or right on the mark.  It’s been quite the ride so far.  From half marathons, to a marathon to a duathlon and a 70.3 Ironman I am just around the corner from my first Ironman distance swim in an official event.  

The past couple of weeks have been full.  I have increased my swimming in preparation for the Swim leg at IM Challenge Penticton.  I have been averaging about 5-6 miles of swimming and last week was just over 8 miles.  I should get another 5 to 6 miles in this week and 2 or 3 early next week, then rest until Saturday.  Saturday I'll head to the Lake and get a warm-up swim in to get used to the water then rest until the race Sunday morning.

Thursday night Open Water Swims have been a real blessing.  I look forward to them as they get me outside and allow me to go up against current, waves, sun and sighting.  Not to mention my breathing is much different than in the pool under ideal and controlled conditions.   I have started to relax more in the open water which gives me the opportunity to get into my pace quicker.  The folks at Zing3 have been absolutely great about setting these open water swims up and helping folks get over their fear of the open water.  James and his team have been outstanding!  Thanks folks!!!

Cannondale Slice with FLO wheels

Yesterday was a milestone for me on the bike, my longest ride ever at 80 miles and on my TT bike.  It felt great, and the FLO wheels are really performing better than expected.   I am still dialing in the nutrition as I felt a little dip around miles 45 and 50.  I am thinking about adding a water bottle cage to the back of my seat for training so I can carry another couple of bottles.  That would have been perfect.  I managed an average moving pace of just under 17 mph.  This is with traffic and negotiating other bikes and pedestrians on the route.  I would still like to see that up around 18.5 to 19 before Tempe.  Next time I will start earlier in the morning when the traffic along the route is significantly less to almost non-existent.  

I have been able to get 3 longish rides on the new bike in the last 3 weeks, 44 miles with a 4,200 ft elev gain, 63 miles with a 4,200 elev gain (Skyline ride) and an 80 miler with a 2,000 elev gain.  The last 2 have been with the FLO's and Continental GP4000S tires.  A few more long rides and I'll head back to Athlete's Lounge for a follow-up on the fitting.  So far everything is working great and I am adjusting to the new geometry nicely.  

A view from atop Skyline on the beginning of the descent down into Scappoose and heading home.
The next 14 weeks will be critical, I think, to my success in Arizona.  I have to be careful not to do too much or not enough.  Also be careful of injuries and make any necessary adjustments to my nutrition plan.  My weight is getting very close to what I had hoped while still maintaining all the gains during training.  No heavy dieting.  Just portion control and eating right.  Although it seems like Arizona is just on the horizon, I still have a ways to go in my overall training plan.  Just taking it a training day at a time.