Monday, November 7, 2011

Run Day

Today was a run day. I went to bed thinking it was supposed to be 44 degree and when I woke up it was 58 degrees, so that is usually a good sign. However, I woke up with a lot joint and foot pain today. My stretch did not seem to really relieve the pain. It took about 3.5 miles before I warmed up, but the the last 4 miles I had solid pace and my leg pain went away and by the time I was finished I was ready to keep going.
I have decided on three races. I think I am going to run the Fall Classic Half Marathon, Turkey Trot and Ashland Half Marathon.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Limbo...Check In.

I have been in limbo since Rev 3 and I have started thinking about my schedule for next season.

It took me about 3-4 weeks to feel recovered from Rev 3, but I am back in full swing and I have been getting in solid runs swims and bikes. I have been keeping my distances up for my long workouts, and this past weekend I did my first brick since Rev. A 2.5 mile swim followed by 4mile run and it felt real solid.

I picked up new wheelset for my road bike a few weeks back and they are working out well. It is my first tubeless wheelset, so I will report back on my experience. However, I have not been able ride them as much as would because of all rain this fall.

A few weeks back, I ran the Bay Village Heritage 5K and it was fun race. Odd to run that short of distance anymore. It is a big mental shift from constantly thinking about pace to turning myself inside out for 5k. Ultimately, it was fun and I love running in Bay.

Side note regarding my psychosis from BVH 5K. I ran from my house to the race, and then once I got my race packet I ran back to my house. When I got back to my house, I ran back to the start and did a warm up run. After the race I did a short run before running home. Issues...I think yes.

Overall, I am enjoying fall training and recovery. I am starting to kick around ideas for next year, which I will report about later.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Rev 3 Pictures

Swim Finish

First Loop of Bike

2nd Bike Shot

Run shot still looking functional

Team Mozo in Full Support

Action Shot courtsey of Rocky


Waiting for me to make a loop. What a great crew.

The Big Screen with Girls

Zoe and I coming down the Finish Shoot

Zoe and I crossing the line

Post Race Shot
Finish Pics

Training Notes: I was back training the Wednesday after the race. I just got back in the pool for a light swim to stretch that day and slowly worked in some workouts the rest of that week. I am pretty much back in full swing and I went for a long run of 12 miles this past weekend, which felt good and my legs are definitley feeling better.

Also, pondering some blog changes, so stay tuned and thanks again to everyone who supported me along the way.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

And Now I Sleep (Cedar Point Full Rev)

Blogger is refusing to let me upload images, so for now we will leave you with these words:

There is too much to write about for this blog, so there may be a couple which ultimately make the recap of the Rev 3 Cedar Point Full Rev 2011 race. I will try and keep this to a simple race recap. This will be made more difficult with Anna interupting.

Friday: As I had said when I last left the blog, I had picked up the girls from their sitter that afternoon and decided to take them with me to registration and spend the evening at Cedar Point. Morgan and Zoe were much more patient than I ever would have been at their age through the process, but to the Rev’s Staff’s credit they made them as much part of it as possible - giving them Rev and American Flag tattoos and allowing them to take a race picture with me.

While standing in the weigh-in line, we did have the pleasure of standing next to Tamera Kozulina, a female pro, who was nice enough to humor the girls as they played around her and her beautiful Timex-sponsored bike.

Saturday: A busy day from the outset. I wanted to get a practice swim in before the race, so I needed to be at Cedar Point between 7-10 am. When I woke to torrential downpour, thunder and lightning, I was fairly certain my plans would change, but I got the bike and other gear together, as I needed to rack my bike this day.

I arrived at CP at 9:30, where the rain had stopped, but the lake had a serious chop going. I got a good practice swim and reviewed the course for the next morning. My nerves had started to kick in a little, but overall I felt good.

I had to hang out until noon, because I wanted to catch the first offered mandatory race meeting, which was uneventful, but keyed me into a few USAT rules that I really was not familiar with.

I got my bike racked shortly after the meeting and covered for the weather. Then I drove the first 50 miles of the bike course. I returned for grocery shopping, so I could put together linguine with pesto and sun-dried tomatoe grilled chicken as my pre-race dinner.

Sunday Wake: My alarm went off at 3:15 and needless to say I was ready to go. It was time to puy my plan into action. First on the list was to get about a 750 -1000 calorie breakfast in my stomach about 3 hours before the swim start. A chocolate brownie walnut Cliff Bar, 2 jars banana baby food, a banana and bottle of fruit punch Excelerade and I had about met my quota. I did a last minute check over my transition bags and then it was off to the race at about 4:15.

Anna: zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.......

After getting to CP, the remaining set up for the race went smoothly and my nerves were relatively in check. I made my way down to the water before the sun was even up to check on the conditions of the lake where I found out that it was glass - and I mean absolutely still - without really even much of ripple. Seeing that made me totally psyched. One of the biggest factors of the swim was going to be a non-factor.

Swim: About 20 minutes before the race, I made my way down and was able to get a practice swim in before the Full Distance Mass Start, which totally help calm the nerves and stretch me out the last little bit. Just before the race start, my friend and training partner Phil found me and gave me some words of encouragement, which also helped to calm me down. I owe him huge for being on the beach that morning.

The swim went great. After the initial maylay of getting kicked and grabbed, I was able to find some clear water and get to the first buoy. When I rounded the first buoy and headed down the back straight I noticed the sun had come through the clouds and the predicted poor weather looked to be clearing into a beautiful day. Now I am not much for signs, but this was good one.

Overall I had good swim and exited the water at 1:15 on my watch and the timing pad in transition at 1:16. It was a good swim and right in the time I had planned, maybe even a little ahead. Transition went smooth and the volunteers were awesome stripping my wetsuit and helping get my bike shoes on.

7:30 AM Girls and I are up and running. Pancakes for everyone! Since Scott didn’t know that I had invited everybody I have ever met to come watch him, I spent the majority of the morning gathering all the things that up to this point had been an abstract list on a post-it note.

As I grabbed the big cooler for water and pop, I noticed duct tape. Never a bad idea to have duct tape. Which made me think about other things it’s never a bad idea to have, which in turn became an entire bag of stuff that had never made it to my post-it list.

8:50 AM On our way. Have to stop at my mom and dad’s because my mom felt it necessary to wash the brand new shirts I gave her that I had painstakingly ironed on a Team MoZo logo and the decals came off.

Bike: The first 5 to 10 miles on the bike I was trying to find my rhythm for the day and begin executing my nutrition. My nutrition plan was to gel after 10 miles then 20,40,60, 80 and 100 miles. I also wanted to have taken in at least two bottles of sports drink and two of water over the course of the ride. I was able to get into a good rhythm on the bike and keep a good pace of 19-20 mph heading through the first 30 miles.

Side Note #1: At mile 40 something was the first time I saw Team Mozo and support, which was a good pick me up and a good thing to race back to for my second loop. Although, I believe they missed me on the second loop because of some Aid Station area chaos.

9:45 AM Arrive at the Wooly Bear as the first biker passes and meet up with the Casey’s who are even MORE prepared for spectating because they brought their tent! Once Jason has finished supervising that set up he feels useless and goes down to get involved in the volunteer action.

10:30 AM Scott passes us and Team MoZo gets to cheer for a whole ten seconds before the girls go back to coloring and watching the movie Soul Surfer on the laptop about a girl that loses her arm in a shark attack and then goes back to surfing competitively. Why not?

A lot goes on between the first time we see him and when we should have seen him the second time. So much that I wrote a whole separate blog about it here.

Side Note #2: The town of Milan is on the route twice and very fun town on the route as it is small town with streets lined with people for the bike. Plus, there is steep quick climb coming into town where families chalk messages on the street, which is just a cool feeling. Anyways, I have to take a second to apologize to a volunteer I almost decapitated with a half-full Gatorade bottle. This volunteer had set up a baby pool with a big target backboard for pitching empties at after the aid station, so after refilling my sports drink bottle I gave my bottle a hurl and let’s just say it took off on me and nearly scalped the volunteer who decided to walk in front of the flight path.

Side Note #3: Gravel sealed roads for 25 miles will rattle fillings loose on a carbon fiber bike, if you are wondering.

Overall: The bike went well; I managed a 19.87mph average for just over 5.5 hour bike, which was exactly where I had wanted to be after the bike.

1:00 PM Decide it is time to pack it in and head to Sandusky. I am praying that we missed him in all the confusion. Because if we didn’t, he’s either blown a tire or gone off the reservation (in which I think he would have a found a way to call) or has been in an accident (in which someone would have called me, because he wears a RoadID with my number on it).

1:45 PM Yell out “Go Dad!” as we drive past him in on Route 6. He’s just making his way back to transition, but this means we really did miss him and he is definitely on track.

Run: I planned to take it easy in T2 and just concentrate on a smooth transition to the run. Once again, my volunteer was great as he unpacked my bag and sorted my shoes, visor and race number, and he packed all my bike gear and helped with my shoes.

Coming off the bike I felt good, but a little dizzy and in hindsight I may have been drinking too much water to close out the bike. Plus, I could feel mind starting to wander a little bit, which for me I have learned is sign that I am starting to hit little walls.

2:00 PM Set up camp in a closed auto repair parking lot in a questionable part of Sandusky. I say questionable, because a car stopped at the corner and yelled out to me, “What the hell is going on here?” She wanted to go one block left, but the race made it one way and she could only go right. I tried to explain that all she had to do was go around a couple blocks and come back up, but apparently this was a day of unreasonable people and all I got was, “Well, this is just fucking crazy.”

“Kids are you noticing all this plight? Roll ‘em up!” – Clark W. Griswald.

I took off out of transition with stop at the bathroom. My plan in the first 5k was to hold back and not over run the course. The plan did not go as planned as I went off and ran the first mile in 8:00 minutes and I knew I needed to dial it down. After the first mile, I had a little water and GU packet. However, I had hit my limit and my stomach would not stand for much more GU.

Side Note 1: I ran into Team Mozo and all supporters at about this point, which was a definite pick me up, even if I did not quite look like it was. It was really awesome to see everyone that turned out and all the work Anna had put into the bringing support to the race.

By this time the Williams, Rocky (an old family friend), and Scott’s parents have arrived, followed closely by my parents and Aunt Charlie. In time to see him on Mile 3 of his run. Not looking particularly happy, but it’s early in the run and I know that it will take him a while to loosen up from the long bike, so not worried.

3:00PM Zoe has to pee and can NOT wait. We set her up in a patch of low weeds between two cars in the parking lot…not my proudest moment as a mom, but she was able to go, which surprised me.

Not much later, Morgan has to go, and she’s all about peeing outside, so my mom and I help her out and I tell her to go ahead and pee, to which she replies, “No, I have to poop!” YIKES! “You can’t POOP in someone’s parking lot!” Nana and Papa take the girls to find a restroom in the car.

3:45ish PM Scott passes on Mile 11, looking much better than before.

I continued to try settle into to a fairly good rhythm for the first 6 miles, but my legs were starting to feel the days toll. I made it through the first half marathon in decent shape having only walked a few aid stations, but my goal time was slowly slipping away as I got more sick on the course and my legs would not respond.

Side Note 2: At the Special Needs Station( Station where volunteers have a bagged I packed gear such as Pepto, Bazooka, Gu, socks and baby powder) at mile marker 13.1. At this point, my socks and shoes were soaked with sweat and I wanted to avoid blisters as long as I could, so I powdered my feet and threw on a second pair of socks. During the stop, I could feel my stomach was starting to get pretty upset from the liquid diet, it was really just wondering which escape hatch it was going use in my body that caused me some concern.

Anyways I was off for the second half-marathon and left once again still at run/jog. At mile 14.5 I started to dry heave and then at mile 15 I lost it and yakked all over the side of the run course. Looking back at the race, I believe this is because I came off my nutrition plan on the run and definitely took too much water in on the first part of the run, which was a regrettable decision. At this point, my Ironman got much more difficult with 11 miles to go.

About a 1.5 miles later I ran into Team Mozo, at which point I freaked Anna out when I told her I had vomited at mile 15, but I was going crazy and I had tell someone. I was able run most of the next two miles after mile 15, but at mile 17 my wall was hitting me directly in the face and I was forced to walk a large portion of next 4 miles.

5:30ishPM Kerbers have arrived by now and our Team MoZo group looks AWESOME! Getting ready for Scott to pass again. I take the girls across the street to give him high fives as a concession to Morgan who is upset she is not going to see the end of the race. (Have to go see world-famous Itzhak Perlman play the violin at Oberlin College.) He heads over to the curb, gives each of the girls a kiss and whispers in my ear, “I threw up at mile 15.”

Okay….yes, that is gross.

6:00PM The Kerbers head out to another spot on the run. Scott’s parents, Zoe, and I head in to the park where my Aunt Cheryl and Uncle John have arrived. I start to get nervous and call Phil to find out just why he chose to tell me that particular bit of information. Was it code for “please call an ambulance”? Phil assures me everything is okay it was probably just a mental thing.

I’m sad for Scott that he is not going to make his goal and I hope that knowledge isn’t making the run harder than it already is.

Side Note 3: During the walking portion I last mentioned, I ran into Phil, Michelle, Paige, Sloane and others, who gave me a huge boost. Especially, thank you to Phil who gave me a little pep talk and let me vent for couple hundred feet as he walked with me.

After seeing them, I was able pick up a jog again and my stomach began to turn the corner. I also began to sense that I was going to make it to the finish. Although, my goal time had passed, I was going to finish, which was the ultimate goal.

For the last 5k, I was able to pick up a run and a female athlete coming over the causeway with me exchanged the same words as we looked up and said “there it is…I can see the finish”.

Anna: 7:00PM Even though I have talked to Phil again and know that Scott is still doing okay and he is not even due in at this pace, I am starting to get anxious for his return. But when he rounds the corner he is actually jogging so I know things are good, even if they aren't great.

Crossing mile 26 of marathon, I ran into Anna, Zoe and my parents and I was told Zoe wanted to run the finish with me. So in mad scramble I had Zoe join me at the top of the finish chute and for the last 250 feet Zoe and I ran the finish together and crossed the line in 12 hours and 29 minutes to end my Ironman.

Now is the time I am expecting a collapse, but he suddenly looks perfectly fine, like he didn’t just completely wreck his body.

When we get the results I look to see what place he would have come in if he had met his goal of 11 hours. 4th place in his age group! 4th place! Only Scott would choose that goal for himself in his first ironman. But it’s over now and all I can say is, next year...we are tail gating!

Thank you again to everyone that came out and supported Team MoZo: Mom and Dad, Anna's Mom and Dad, the Casey's, Rocky, the William's, Anna's Aunt Charlie, The Kerbers, and the Kirschner's. We can't thank you enough or begin to express how much your showing up meant to us.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

The Horses Are In The Barn

Two days until the race. The training is done and now its time to run. I had a good last weekend of training with a strong long bike and run brick. Also, had a great open-water swim on Saturday morning while the sun was coming up over the city.

Let's hope the weather takes a turn for the better and is slightly better than predicted for Sunday. According to predictions the winds are shifting and the lake should calm down for the weekend. The lake has already cooled substanially, considering the hot summer and it should be a good wetsuit swim on Sunday.

I have panicked a few times at this point, questioning what I have gotten myself into. Otherwise, I have been at peace with with race and final preparations and I am now excited to get started.

I am going over my final nurtition plan tonight. It will be interesting to see how much Gel/Gu my body will take and trying to get down a couple thousand calories during the race.

One main funny obession I have had recently is trying plan out my bathroom stops, but it is totally perplexing. Plus, you know you have issues when start considering going on yourself to save time. Rest at ease that was not the final decesion.

Will head out to Cedar Point to pick up my registration, and since it is Anna's book club night I will take the girls on the rides for a while.

Keep an eye out on Sunday, as I am sure Anna will be posting updates. In keeping with the theme of the blog only 140.6 miles and I get some sleep.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

The Bytheville Run With The Dog Whisperer and Rev 3 Registration

If you by chance read my wife's blog, you realize we just returned from our summer vacation in Hilton Head, after the Vermilion race.

So after the race we took off for South Carolina and I had decided that we were going to drive to Rock Hill, SC for Day One. On the way, I declared I was taking the day off the following morning, considering the race that day and the drive. Well, the drive was going well and I was a little wired, so we hit Rock Hill and decided to push a little further, making it to Blythville, SC - just short of Columbia, SC - which left us about 3 hours of driving the next day.

As we were pulling into the hotel, I told Anna that I was wired and that I was running in the morning before we is an illness.

Alarm goes off at 6:00 and I throw on some running clothes and take off into Blytheville. Generally, I love going for runs in new towns for the obvious reasons that there is new stuff to look at and the general thought that there is some adventure in getting lost in a new town.

About a mile into the run, two dogs come running out of what I thought was their yard into the street and start barking. Now the one dog doing all the barking was a small mixed breed that reminded me of the little dog from the Tom & Jerry Cartoon and just behind him was the enforcer a much larger dog. They gave chase to the property line and then backed off. A little rise in my blood pressure.

I thought nothing of it and kept running through some nicer neighborhoods for another 5 miles and headed back to the street where all the hotels were located and decided to run the access road that was behind the hotel and gas stations between all the businesses.

As I am headed back towards our hotel I hear a bark from the gas station and think a dog in a car must see me and is barking. So I keep running, iPod going the whole time, and realize the barking is not going away. I now look behind me and that same T&J dog is now chasing me with four other dogs through the parking lots. Blood pressure spikes quite a bit.

At this point, other than terror, I was remembering a story I had read about a women in Georgia who was mauled by stray dogs who held up in a foreclosed home and when she ran past the house the dogs came out and attacked her, biting her to death.

Suffice it to say, this horse picked up his pace, but the little dog starting chasing harder and so did the rest of the pack. Now I am getting a little more than worried, so I pick up the pace a little more. So does the T&J dog and it is clear this is going to end badly, if something doesn't change quickly. I mean, I'll take my chances with one small dog, but 5 dogs I have no chance.

So the picture is now: me - at pretty much a dead sprint - through this hillbilly town with 5 dogs coming down on me and I luckily see a guy pulling into a bank for work and I decide I am going to sprint for him as he gets out of his car. I can only imagine what he was thinking when he stepped out his car and saw me sprinting at him through a parking lot with 5 dogs in tow.

I got to within about 15 feet of the guy and looked back one last time as if to say to the dogs "look there is two of us now." T&J dog pulled up and just kept barking with his gang.

I now graciously thank the man and sneak around the bank and haul ass for my hotel, where I walk in and regale Anna with my morning run. I proclaim that I will be calling the Bytheville City Hall, which has yet to happen.

On the training side on things, I am officially registered for the REV 3 Full and had a great last week of heavy training. It culminated this weekend with a 3 mile swim on Friday, 20 mile run on Saturday, 102 mile bike on Sunday followed by a short run. It is time to TAPER.

Editor's Note: Wow, wasn't aware that Scott knew the meaning of the word TAPER.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Vermilion Olympic Tri Recap

I flew solo for this race. No training partner, no family, just me and my bike. Due to the new start time (7:00a.m) I was up way too early.

My alarm went off at 4:05 (like I said, way too early). I am usually really excited about this race, but this year I had hard time focusing the Saturday before and even considered bailing on the race, since the girls and I were leaving for Hilton Head the same day.

I digress. I had luckily gotten everything in order the night before, so the morning was smooth and I started to eat a little breakfast before I got in the car for the race. Banana baby food, as always.

I was out of the house by 4:45 to the beginnings of lightening and a strong “breeze” over the lake. I decided to keep my bike off the rack and just packed it in the back of the car. A good thing, since it dumped rain on my way out to the race – along with thunder and lightning my entire ride out to Vermilion. There was part of me that was thinking that I was not going to have to worry about racing because there was not going to be a race.

I got to transition a little after 5:30, which is way early for me and only a handful of people had arrived. I got my favorite spot on the bike rack, on the end, next to the aisle. I got my transition set up and had no line for the port-a-pots, which I later noticed were atrocious.

The only thing about being there that early is that it gives you a lot of time to stew, so I decided to walk to the swim course and get a good stretch, while I also watched the lightning and the lake conditions – a little ugly with 3-4 foot waves crashing on shore and a solid swell further out. My first thought was the swim was going to be an adventure, if they let us take it on.

Then the announcements started flying. The race was going to be delayed for a ½ hour for weather. All tri athletes were free to transfer races to the du because of water conditions.

The internal debate began about what I should do, because I came with mindset of doing a tri, not a du. I was not up for the extra running in the du anyways. However, the little voice in me tries to guess their intent of the announcement...are they saying it’s too dangerous to swim…am I a strong enough swimmer, all the negative thought. So I said F it and threw my wetsuit on to give the water a try and then make my decision.

Once in the lake, it was definitely rough, but I ultimately conclude it is manageable, especially with a wetsuit. Then comes the announcement that it will be a half mile swim for everybody, including the Oly tri, and there is no decision.

Moving on… my wave goes off at its newly scheduled time without issue and the swim went well. Especially since the advertised ½ mile swim was much more like a ¼ mile swim.

When I got out of the water I was totally focused and ready to ride. The ride is why I love this race. The Oly bike course is a great test with some good climbing. It really makes me push myself. The first 12 miles are brutal as there are at least 3 big climbs, where they have crushed your speed to nothing at the bottom. I had great pace going out and was just eating up the distance.

I love climbing in races, because it can be such a confidence boost when you get out of the saddle and start crushing it up hill, especially if you can start picking people off.

About 9 miles out I got in a group with two other cyclists and we ended pushing each other through the entire course, which made the second half of the course fly by. Also, the legal and illegal drafting that may or may not have occurred did not hurt the speed of the group.

I also noticed neither of the guys were in my age group, which either meant I was getting blown away or I had gotten ahead of the group.

I came in from the bike and I had a good transition of under a minute and I was off and running with one my cycling compadres. This worked great, because we both pushed each other at first with 7:00 minute miles and going into third miles we had dropped under 7:00. At 3.2 miles I decided I was going to pass my running partner and I got ahead of him for about quarter mile.
That must have sparked him, because I heard his footsteps and he caught back up me just after 4 miles and pulled ahead. He also picked it up one more gear and I dropped behind by about 25 feet (which really pissed me off) but I was able keep it there for the last two miles. I was starting to get a blister on the top of my foot, because I had gone barefoot again and thrown on my shoes too quickly.

Regardless, I finished the race in 2:04:10, which I was happy with. At the time, I did not know where that would place me, although I had not seen many guys in my age group around me.

I did not hang out for the results because, as I said, the girls and I had a car trip to start. So I said goodbye to a family friend who was volunteering in transition and I took off. As always, the volunteers in Vermilion were great and Linwood, as a race site, is also great.

In the end, 2:04:10 was good enough for 1st in my age group and 11th overall for the Olympic Race.

Editor’s Note: I can’t believe we missed a blue ribbon race!

Editor’s Note 2: There have been a couple trips to Spin in the last few weeks for tune ups and tweeks. During this time, I have noticed Scott “talking” with his bikes. Welcoming them home from overnight stays. Worried? Me? Nah.

Editor’s Note 3: One additional note on our stay here in Hilton Head…the bike is in the hallway, not the bedroom. It’s a little lonely.