Monday, October 29, 2007

practice tri/evil motorist

Saturday morning was the team practice tri. It was a beautiful day out at Stevens Creek reservoir, perfect for the fall participants to work in one last dress rehearsal before beginning their final taper for Treasure Island.

Everything seemed to go off pretty smoothly. We had all the volunteers we could have hoped for, mostly from the spring team. It was a great chance to catch up with some people, however briefly! It further cemented my decision to hang around for one more spring season.

I spent the morning as a buddy swimmer--helping less confident swimmers cover the distance without psyching themselves out too much. The water was colder than any of the swims we've done so far this season, I'd guess neighborhood of 59-60 degrees. The reservoir sits in a narrow canyon that holds onto cold air and sees less sunlight than open areas.

By the time I got out of the water, the faster cyclists were finishing up and heading out on the run. Everyone did a fantastic job and completed all three disciplines looking strong.

I'm looking forward to seeing how everyone does at their event in two weeks.

Sunday, I managed to drag my butt out of bed for the captains' ride up in Portola Valley. It felt good to be out and about on Eddie again. I've limited myself to spinning while my car has been in the body shop; my bike rack didn't fit too well on the rental and I didn't want to risk getting grease all over the backseat interior. Anyway, the ride was meant to be leisurely, but since I'M not tapering for anything, I kept it at a brisk spin the whole way. No hills or anything, anyway.

Unfortunately, in Woodside, one of the guys on our team got a vicious tongue-lashing from a motorist in a Land Rover. I'm not sure why she singled him out--there were about ten of us sitting at a red light together and we'd all been descending Woodside Road single file. She kept screaming at him to share the road, and that she'd had to get into the left lane to get around him. He held it together pretty well, and for how I tend to react to those situations, so did that I managed to keep my mouth shut. Nothing constructive would have come from me at that moment. I had to bite back the urge to tell her if she didn't need such a big gas-guzzling car for her lazy, bony, day-spa lurking ass, maybe there would have been enough room to pass him safely without changing lanes. Followed, of course, by the extension of a strategically chosen digit.

In any case, what someone should have said was that California law states that motorists are to treat cyclists like slow-moving vehicles, and if you must change lanes to safely pass them, SO BE IT. Besides, the bike lane on Woodside road is, like, eight feet wide. So, she was full of crap to begin with.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


It never ceases to amaze me. I can utterly wreck myself with weights in 45 minutes or less, especially after laying off the resistance training for a bit. Right now it would take hours of running up and down steep grades to create the same delayed-onset muscle soreness I was feeling today.

Physiologically, it makes sense to me. Hey, I wrote [most of] a thesis on DOMS. :-D Still gets me every time.

Anyway, yeah, legs were talking a little bit today. Adductors mostly. Could have to do with the leaping around I did at track last night--I ended up circuit training with the AG's, half of whom had run the Nike half on Sunday. They were dead. I don't think even a hit of crystal meth would have energized them, but I did my darnedest and led some rather spritely strength drills, if I do say so myself. Good thing, too--I ended up not having time to get any sort of a run in.

Today, I set the stage for six weeks of speed benching. Got a 3 rep max (so shi-shi I am not sure I want to post it) and did some other work, too. I was feeling a bit uninspired, so I didn't work any functional stuff in,unfortunately.

Spin 10
Dynamic ball warm up
Speed Bench warmup (Superset 6x6 rep sets of powerbench--with giant rubber bands for resistance, would have to draw a picture for it to make sense, I think--with wide-grip lat pulls, 5x12 at 70#)
Speed bench to 3 rep max (It was 85#, okay--now stop laughing)
SS1: DB row 3x12x60#/Invert tri DB extension 3x12x20#
SS2: SA DB Incline press 3x12x20#/Tricep pushups (narrow hands) 3x12

And then the upper body was good and tapped. Nice transient hypertrophy, too. I had to resist the urge to flex it like Aaahnold. I held off on the abs, because after a good session of powerlifting technique, I am really feeling them anyway. They were pulling pretty hard under the bar.

Would be nice to spin for an hour tonight...yeah, right, like that'll happen. Dinner is mine to cook this evening, and it's not like I have an event hanging over my head...yet. :-)

Monday, October 22, 2007

back at it

I'm having trouble deciding right now if I want to do one more season worth of triathlon. I have some other goals that will put tri on the back burner for a while, and I just haven't figured out a timeline that I feel 100% committed to yet.

I think I'd like to train for Wildflower again I also had a friend remind me the other night that we'd been talking about doing the tri at Memphis in May next year.

I'm waffling.

In any case...I decided that just because I have not made a definite decision as to whether I'll be training for more races next spring, I can go ahead and get on with my off-season as if I WERE going to train for more races in the spring. Back to strength training, this time with a specific focus on bring up absolute strength rather than muscle mass:

10 minute spin
Dynamic stretch
Specific warmup:
  • Superset 1x3: Speed squat 6x55#/GH raise x8
  • Superset 2x3: Speed squat 6x75#/Reverse hyperx12

Main set:

  • Box squat to 3 rep max: 95, 115, 135, 155# (ROM started to suffer @ 155)
  • Superset 3x3: Split squat 12x45#/Sumo squat 12x60#
  • Superset 4x3: Diag. woodchop 12x50#/Leg raise x12

Then, I got my butt on the foam roller to work the IT bands a bit.

Everything felt pretty good. Hamstrings a little tight, left knee did okay. I've lost some strength in the past two years, but for it I gained endurance. Not so bad. I'd like to bring my max squat up to 200# by January. I'd also like to start cycling some Olympic lifting back in to work on flexbility and on fast twitch fibers in my lower body.

I also need to make sure I work in lots of single leg strength and stability work.

I'm such a different athlete than I was two years ago. I used to focus mainly on Olympic lifting and could regularly clean ank jerk 100#+. I used to love to speed squat and got up to 305#. I'm not so interested in that anymore, but I would like to be stronger than I am now...maybe somewhere in the middle.

Monday, October 15, 2007

i need to ride my bike more.

i should schedule that or something...or at least put it on my trainer at home.

ugh. how is it that i ran a half-marathon yesterday and today i'm having a fat day?

Sunday, October 14, 2007

checking in/SJRNR

Today was the San Jose Rock n Roll Half Marathon.

I wouldn't say I ran it, but it sure was a lot of fun!

I've become the coach I didn't want to be--detrained, unorganized and unmotivated in terms of my own training and workout schedule.

On the other hand, coaching is rewarding. It's been wonderful to watch the fall team progress. A great thing about working with the "everyman" population of Team in Training is that they continually amaze me and more importantly, themselves. Their changes are not about a podium spot, a better PR, or even a finer physique. It's about discovering (or sometimes re-discovering) the athlete they always were. It's about adopting (and usually keeping) a new lifestyle. It's about about finding out they CAN run all the way around the track, or clip in and out of bike pedals, or transform from a total non-swimmer to an open water stud!

Today I ran the whole distance with two great ladies from my team, Kathryn and Meredith. We had a blast! It was smiles and high-fives all around from miles 8-13. Neither of them had ever run farther than 7ish miles in their lives! They did awesome, and though they kept telling me at first that I could go ahead if I wanted, the truth is, I couldn't have gone faster. They've been doing speedwork; I have not. They have been swimming, spinning, and biking regularly. Even if I were in the same shape I was in back in May and June, I'd much rather have run with them anyway!!!

I felt great fitness wise, and of course, mentally. I wasn't nervous about this one; it was just for fun. As for tissue integrity....starting at about mile 6 or 7, my left knee started to complain a bit. IT band was not happy--I haven't been giving it the appropriate attention lately. No surprise, this has been a challenging week. Amazing, I heard barely a peep from the calves, which were hurting so much during my two runs earlier this week that I had to cut them short by a mile or two. So overall, did okay. As of my last couple rides, the post-WF knee issues seem to have completely resolved themselves with diligent rolling and stretching.