Saturday, February 20, 2010

YMCA: Partners With Youth

Today was the "Cyclethon" to raise funds for the YMCA program called Partners With Youth.  I'm fundraising for this program because I was nabbed, and handed a packet. So even though I didn't 'volunteer' it dosn't matter apparently.  The funds go to disadvantaged youth, who can't afford the special events the Y hosts, such as camp Orkila, aqua events, wall climbs, and a bunch of other things.

Helping kids get into something productive vs reaching the next level in a video game?  Ok.

Well someone had the bright idea of getting 19 folks into a sweaty room on stationary bikes, and jam to loud music while getting yelled at.  For some reason this causes folks to open the pocketbook.  Who thought of this stuff?!

So today they forced me to go pedal in my favorite spinning room for 3 hours.  bummer.... Ha, yeah right! 

It was great.  Got a chance to meet a new spin instructor, as they would swap out each hour.  Also, had a chance to use up some of the old Accelerade.  Burnt through 2 bottles worth, along with 1 hammer gel.  Also, as luck would have it, one of the folks that was in the class is a chocolatier, and brought some of her delights.  I intended to bring one home to the wife, but also have poor timing, and chose a bad time to to the bathroom, as when I returned, she was gone.

All three hours were great, and even though I'm on the tailend of this cough/cold it felt great to kick it into high gear and crank.

We ended up raising over $2100 for the program, and really enjoyed ourselves!  Now I'm just going to have to hunt down some other treat for the wife on the bike ride back home from the office here...

Also, I'm going to start listing workout data at the bottom of the blogs to track:

Time: 3:00 hr
Intensity: 7 (1-10)
Distance: NA
Av HR: 143
In Zone: 2:47 hr

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Still sick? ...on with the cardio...

Well the sick bug has traveled into the lungs, and based on internet advice 1. it's ok to ride 2. it's not ok to ride 3. I should try to swallow 1 tablespoon of cinnamon, dry.  I think I'd prefer #1.

Went to Campy's spin class on Monday, and it was really challenging not being able to push it as hard as normal.  Kept the HR in 160-165 range most of the time, on purpose.  This is 20bpm slower than typical, so of course it's hard to go light.  But during a couple of songs, "Come on Irene" in particular I was able to get back up to 185 without problem.  The recovery HR didn't drop as quickly as it usually does, otherwise I'm not really feeling this bug much.

I've heard that if you push hard on cardio when you've got a virus that it will weaken the immune system enough to allow the bug to spread even more.  This of course will knock you out even longer than if you'd never trained.  So use caution!

After the cycling, spent a couple minutes in the pool.  Again still working on distance, streamlining, and efficiency.  It seems I'm getting better at the crawl stroke, and it's really nice!  Thank you Total Immersion videos

And thank you King County Library system for carrying the Freestyle Made Easy video!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Sick is as Sick Does

It's the bug, a gift from the little girls to us as parents.  They bring home more than homework and crayoned drawings to us from school.

This one is moving to the lungs today, but that just allows me to finally focus on lifting.  I know that lifting will help with some of the faster time trial rides (like triathlon!).  Lifting at the beginning of a season I've read will benefit because of the 'non-specific' muscle building.

This again contributes to 'Economy' of the 3 keys to endurance sports.  The stronger the muscle, the easier it is for it to produce effort at higher levels.  Considering we should always be operating at a 'high level', either due to hill climbing or increased speed.

3 Keys To Endurance Sports (thank you Joe Friel):
  1. Aerobic Capacity
  2. Lactate Threshold
  3. Economy of Movement

So since the lungs are getting worse, it's time to shift focus from Aerobic Capaicity/Lactate Threshold to Economy of Movement... at least for the very short term (hopefully no longer than this week).  

Leg press (+50lb sled): 160 x20 reps, 125 x20, 125 x20, 125 x17
Calf press (+50lb sled): 160 x20 reps, 125 x20, 125 x20, 125 x20
Hamstring Curl (prone): 50 x18, 35 x20, 35 x20

Still swimming daily, and focused on getting 'mileage' in.  .  I had planned originally on doing 8 laps x 4.  But as was pointed out to me halfway in: 36 laps = 1 mile.  Doh, oh well.  This will be broken into bite sized piece for me by doing 9 laps x 4 with the pull buoy at first.  Then 18 x 2, 36 x 1.  After getting all 36 in, then I'll start removing the buoy, for 2, then 4, then 8, then 16 of the total laps. Until it's no longer needed at all.

This plan does 2 things well:

  1. Allows me to build confidence, improve stroke, improve breathing, and hit the mileage that is my goal.

  2. Forces me to focus on stroke over kick. This benefits the my triathlon by keeping the legs fresh for bike/run.

Sick?  Eh, just a change of plans...

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Rice Ride results

Good ride.

Enjoyed the company of my brother Morganism, and we took our time, missed a turn, and ended up stranded in Monroe.  Beautiful weather, and really liked the sunshine.

Thank goodness for family close by, as we were up against time commitments, and Morganism had to get going.  So I called in the cavalry in the form of another brother in his Honda Odyssey to come pick us up. 

Miles: 32.5
Max Spd: 39.3
Avg Spd: 14.5
Time: 2:15

Next week, we don't miss that turn, and will go the whole distance too.

Rice Ride

Headed out today for the 56 miler, and bringing my brother along.  He says he may cut out part way, but it’s going to be a beautiful ride if the weatherman is right. After he cuts out I’m going to try pushing it a bit on Union hill to get the HR up, then tinker with nutrition a bit. 

The plan is to bring Accelerade and Nuuns, with powerbar backups, and maybe some raisons just in case.  I’ve got the pump, and spare tube, along with a patch kit and will refill water bottles in Redmond, then try to get all the way to Monroe on 2 bottles. 

My backup plan is to stop over in Duvall if needed to refill, but I’m guessing it’ll be just fine.  56 miles is only maybe 3 bottles, but I have been feeling a bit slow.  Think I am catching, or am fighting a cold that has the whole family sick. So could be a bit more than 3 bottles, with a slower overall pace.  I expect it will take just over 3 hours, at a conservative pace.

This will be a Rice Ride.  The kind of ride that goes well with almost any main course, and tends to be the staple of the diet.  Still need something else to go with it, but it is a filler, and works well in a pinch, plus it's cheap and easy.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Closing up the Y

Went in tonight for a quick ride on the spin bikes with the tv screen (awesome).  Since I couldn't make it to Campy's class today, I'm tearing my hair out (what's left), and need to get in to get some usage on the legs before tomorrows ride. It was tough, but I wanted to support the wife and sister getting in early to the gym, and looking at a potential house. 

So instead of pumping the pedals to Sandstorm or Cake,"Going the distance".  I was here juggling the kiddos.  Oh well, it was fun to spend some time with them, and I think the cold bug that's got all the kids sick has taken ahold of me too.  But I'm not worried, it burns off quickly just like everything else... thank you cardio.

After watching an episode of 'Dirty Jobs' on the bike and some thinly veiled Discovery channel show about why we should harvest embryonic stem cells... I hit the pool for 45 minutes, and did some zipper drills feeling quite relaxed.

Also, I think I just figured out how to increase mileage in the pool.  Swim as far as I can with a pull buoy.  Say 10 laps.  Then increase it as quickly as possible, using the pull buoy to give easy laps. At 30 laps start removing the buoy for the last 2, then 4, then 6... until all 30 laps are without the buoy.  Let's eat this elephant called distance one bite at a time.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Weight training day 1.5

Joe Friel writes that the base period is the best time to work a weight routine into your training.  The is because your body can build the non-specific strength that you use while swimming, cycling, or running.  Core strength, shoulders, chest legs, back, arms.  Ok, sounds like the whole body to me.

While my leg strength is very good at the moment, shoulder, core, chest, and back could use improvement.  This will contribute to what Friel describes as 'economy'.  His concept is that there's only 3 things that make for a strong athlete.  Aerobic capacity, Lactate threshold, and Economy of movement.  Economy is my target for upper body improvement which will effect swim endurance substantially, at least that's the idea.

Swimming -weak (3)
Cycling -very strong (8)
Running -strong (6)

Taking Muscle Milk protein supplement from Costco.  It's tasty and cheap at $30 for the 3lb tub, but dosn't mix well in the recommended 8 oz of water.

So it's been almost a year since I picked up a dumbbell, and this being day 1.5.  I'm sore... ouch

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Dale Turner bike club

Last night was the monthly meeting of the Dale Turner bike club .  We met at 3rd Place Books in Lake Forest Park, around a huge unfinished rough cut wooden table.  I got there a bit late, but the conversation was already going, with my friend talking about goal setting for the STP and other ultra distance rides.

It's always fun to see the rest of the folks, 'dressed up'... ok, well at least not wearing a lycra like I always get to see them during spin classes.  This group of folks I think has alot of potential to really do some fun rides.  I hope the bike club meetings last, and folks really commit to some challenging personal goals.  Of course normally I get to see all these people huffing and puffing on a bike to nowhere, but the goals that are getting set are excellent!

A couple brothers plan to ride the STP, 200 miles. A man is breaking the 40 mile barrier, a huge personal record. Another is being convinced he could ride the STP in one day (aka double century ride).  My friend and I are planning a double century ride called Davis.  These are significant goals that we're all aiming for.

If nothing else, I hope that folks will be inspired to breakthrough barriers they thought impossible.

"I am the greatest builder in the world. I am the foundation of every triumph. No matter what your position is, I can better it.  My name is enthusiasm." -Anonymous

Monday, February 1, 2010

Saturday Rides

Let the fun begin.  Not even "type 2 fun, not fun now, fun later".  This is the real type of fun to be had on a bike, in the sun or rain, going fast or slow, up or down a hill with your brother.

Went out this last Saturday for what will now become a weekly bike ride. We started at Houghton Park in Kirkland, and then ran the triathlon route first north, then east, then north, then south back to the park. Roughly 13 miles, all by memory and involving quite a few hills.

The Kirkland Triathlon is what's known as a "Sprint" tri.  It involves a half mile swim, 12 mile bike ride, and 3 mile run.  The gravy on this triathlon is that it's full of hills.  That is plenty of fun in my opinion, as hill climbing is one of my favorite things due to a great spin class, and insane friend/coach.  Here's another fun ride we're planning:

The more hills, the better the chances of hitting one of my goals:
To place in the top 10 for my age bracket for the Kirkland Triathlon

Saturday rides will get progressively longer, this last ride was only about 20 miles.  Next week I'd like to get in a fun looking 56 mile route. We may stick with that for the next few weeks, depending if I've got anyone that wants to ride with, or go back to the triathlon route for repeats. Then we step it up to regular 100 mile + training rides to get ready for the Davis Double Century  That will be a lot of fun, but also expensive, and my first double century as STP fell through unfortunately. Here is the official site for Davis Double.