Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Are you improving? Check the numbers.

This requires a heart rate monitor and a treadmill or other easily replicated output.

Create a series of intervals which you are capable of replicating. Such as:

3 minutes 4.5 mph
3 minutes 5mph
3 minutes 5.5 mph
3 minutes 6 mph
1 minute Stopped or active recovery.

Don't stop until test is over.
At the end of each stage. note your HR at that moment, or if your watch does laps, you might be able to get averages for each stage. Add all of these together and you have a total score which you compare to as you go along. It's suggested that you try to lead into this test similarly each time (after a rest day for example). Performed at the same of day... for the sake of "control".

Obviously, your score should decrease as your aerobic fitness improves.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007


Updated the Spreadsheet to include February. It is a new sheet. You have to click on the tab in the lower left hand to get back to the January sheet. Let me know if you need or want something on it.

Up top is me starting my run portion of my tri last summer. I figured I would share, of course I'm not sharing any swimming pictures, I don't like to see those.

Running Stuff

So yesterday I was surfin around at running technique web sites. I came across this one that said that anything under 6mph isn't running. It's jogging and that walking would be healthier for you if you didn't intend to push yourself to go faster.

Well, as negative as that statement was I did come away with something from it.
I feel that until I'm up over 5.5mph I really can't try to match the running technique I'm seeing online. It's just difficult to do at slower speeds for me. I'm certainly not saying when I'm running faster I've got the technique down, but it feels more like it for sure.
In fact over that last 4 months I've found there has always been certain speeds which just didn't work right. They moved as I progressed. I'm guessing this is normal.

The other thing I found which I though was interesting was the running barefoot training. They say if you are outdoors on a nice lawn and run barefoot you will naturally run with good technique. (Guess I'll have to wait a few months for that, Jason maybe by July you can try this).

Friday, January 26, 2007

Kinetic Energy

Hold the horses on the t-shirt "E=MV". I have made a mistake. The formula for kinetic Energy is as stated above.

The concept is similar, but the effect is not as great. I know I am shattering your world here, but you need to know the truth. Craig finishes a 5K race in 25 minutes flat (v=12km/hr) . I weigh for ease sake 100kg (m). I put out 7,200 kilojoules. The 110 lb (50kg) pound girl finishing with the same time as me, thus same velocity only puts out 3600 kilojoules. Based on my previous error, we would say she has to go 24km/hr to equal my joule output. Based on formula above, she actually only has to go 16.97 km/hr, which is only 29% faster than me (which equates to 17 minute 45 second 5K time). I have not been to a race so far that a girl/women has run this time, but I have seen guys do sub 16 minute.

Let's compare Shawn and Craig. The total distance of a Mooseman is approx. 56 km. Let's say Craig somehow does a time of 3 hours. This equates to a "v" of 18.66 km/hr. My weight, at race time, 200lbs (m=90.9kg). Kinetic Energy would be 15,825 kilojoules. So, for Craig and Shawn to "tie", Shawn, 250lbs (m=113.63kg), he would have to travel avg. speed 16.76 km/hr. Thus he would have to do a 3 hour 21 minute Mooseman. Which is only 11.66 % slower than Craig.

Huh, I have no idea if I did this right or got the labels right, but it appears Shawn and I are going to have to Crank It up a notch to hang with the little weaklings.

Running Technique:

To see an example of good running technique. Notice that he is NOT landing on his heels or his toes. His foot is flat at footstrike.

Click here to watch Video

You can use your arrow keys to frame by frame the playback.

Having no experience running I was curious what Proper technique was. Sadly I'm not sure I'm able to determine if I'm even close to this. Might be interesting to video tape running on the treadmill to compare.

More Techinique


More Drills

You Tube Even Has Stuff

More Pose Tech

That should keep you busy!


I have checked my BMI before and have been called grossly obese, so I thought I'd check today at Craig's suggested website. It just said I was obese. At least I got rid of the gross part. But these calculations are not acceptable. There is no measurement of your musculature or bone density or anything. It said I would have to weigh 210 just to get into the very top of the normal range. That just ain't gonna happen. I'd have to go on an extremely low calorie diet and wither myself away to get that light. I weighed more than that when I was a freshman in college. If Craig is overweight, I got troubles. Yesterday I thought I should get a shirt that says "Heaviest Finisher" or something like that. Maybe "E=MV."
Anyway, I think I'll stay away from the BMI sites. I'm shooting for more of a Dolph Lundgren in Rocky 4 look. I think he weighed a fair parcel more than 210, but I'm pretty sure he wasn't obese in that movie.

Family Fun Night

Went to Maddy's school last night for a family fun night. It was a fun night that required us to bring our sneakers. They had five 20 minute stations, each station was designed to teach you something about health.
  1. Walk off the Pounds - We did a video where we walked in place for 20 minutes with hand weights during about 10 minute of it. We did leg kicks and knee lifts. Kid's had a great time.
  2. Dancercize - Place Station (I think Play Station, first time I had ever done it), where you have to hit the arrows on the pad on the floor. We did it to YMCA. I was getting BOOED by the virtual audience more than once.
  3. Basketball Drills - Eleanor just picked the ball up and ran with it. Dribbling is not her forte'
  4. Why tobacco, soft drink, and sweets are bad for you via a Power Point Presentation. They had some props, most interesting was the egg (still in the shell) soaked in COKE for two days, next to an egg soaked in water for two days. Nasty! I wonder what my small intestine looks like.
  5. Height, Weight, Blood Pressure and BMI (Body Mass Index) check station and discussion about such. My BMI was a 28. It said I was overweight. A 30 is obese. 24.5 would get me back into the healthy range. For my 6' 3" frame I would have to weigh 195 lbs. Whoa, check it out, I don't know if I can get there from here. Plus that would take me out of the Clydesdale division. By the way the rest of my family had a BMI between 16.1 and 17.5, all were underweight (18.5-25 normal range).

Check out stuff on BMI. It might make you set a more realistic goal for weight loss. I have to believe that frame size, & muscle mass would have to have an effect on it. The charts they were using were pretty generic.

Here is a generic website to calculate. You just enter your height weight and bam, you found out how overweight you are.

Thursday, January 25, 2007


I forgot to mention I went to the Y on Wednesday night around 8PM. I wanted to see how busy the pool was that time of night. (not busy at all).
So we signed up. Now I've got to work that into the schedule. I like swimming, I'm looking forward to it. Let's see if I still say that in a few months.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

More Heart Rate Stuff

I'm sure to some of you, this will be mind blowing. As some people can't get their HR up this high ever. I'm still trying to figure all this stuff out so I'm going to talk out loud here on our blog.

OK. So the run I did tonight 6 minutes at 5MPH. HR was 160-170.
Then 15 minutes at 6MPH. HR gets to 181 and sits there the full 15 minutes.
Back to 5MPH. HR goes back to 170.

From the book I'm reading. He talks about "Rating of Perceived Exertion" (RPE). Which he uses to locate your training zones. It's a scale of 1-10 and he describes each step. So you can use this chart to help "weigh" your RPE. I'm going to list the last 3.

8- Very Hard, Labored, Cannot Talk
9- Very Very Hard, Very Labored Breathing
10 Extremely Hard, Gasping for Air.

I feel that at 6mph. I would rate my exertion at 8, as he describes 10 as being Exertion which can only be maintained for a very short time. I am able to run that pace for 15 minutes. So it seems to me I would have to push harder to reach RPE 9 and 10.

Anyhow, I'm probably going to email the author regarding this. I personally feel that it's quite possible that 181 is in fact my Max Heart Rate because of the fact the entire 15 minutes of that 6mph it didn't go higher. Of course the work was constant but I'm thinking of the fact that over time, I'd think it would drift higher.

Anyone have an opinion on whether I could have actually trained myself to be able to run at Max Heart rate for 15 minutes? (I don't intend on pushing harder to see if I can get higher Heart Rates).
I'm starting to reconsider my attempt at a 31 minute run at 6mph next week.
Seriously, I'd like some feedback. I have no problem with just continuing to work out without trying "the 5k race".

Shoulder Update

So I had my follow-up appt with the orthopod today. I was being Mr. Mom and had Riley with me because he had a post-sinus surgery appt immediately following mine just a few miles down the road (a lucky break for me). The results of the MRI/Arthrogram are in, and to the Doc's surprise, it was clean. This is both good and bad. Good in that I won't have to have surgery. Bad in that the exact cause of the discomfort (aside from my being a total woose) is still kind of a question mark. The doc is leaning towards an "impingement" because the x-ray showed I have a "hooked" clavicle. He thinks it was jammed when my mountain bike rode me down the hill.

So now I am going to do the old physical therapy thing for a few weeks. I also was fortunate enough to receive a cortizone shot. Not sure if anyone else has ever had the pleasure, but I have (in my elbow -- last August from same accident), and I LOVE them! As I mentioned above, I had my son with me, so I had to sac up and act like I didn't mind having a 3 inch needle jammed into my shoulder socket. He was pretty impressed with both the size of the needle and the fact that I didn't cry. Mostly he was just glad that the shot wasn't for him this time.

I am really hoping the shot and therapy do the trick. In the meantime, I am going to get back into my full run/bike routine again in the next few weeks. We have a really nice gym at work where I'll do the bike and the neighborhood is ideal for running. Can't wait to get into this thing full swing!


Antonym: See Matt as an example.

Yeah. I'm not very stretchy. I've found I do stretch much better once I'm warmed up. When I'm cold I don't feel like I'm accomplishing much.
Why do I bring this up? Because yesterday was a rest day for me. This AM I wake up and I have an odd pull or something going on behind my left knee. It's not painful. Really it just feels like it needs to be warmed up and stretched out. (I hope that's the case).
Anyhow, I think on my rest days I'm going to walk and stretch at the very least from now on. I've been reading that warming up the muscles helps rid them of the bad stuff faster than cold rest.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Caffeine Free

I am now free of the dastardly drug. I'm not saying it will last, but I am clean for the moment.

Today, I ran outside down a hill because I was a little late to pick up the kid. I would say I was running in the "fast" zone (for me). So this hill was maybe a quarter mile long, and all downhill, which was nice, but as it turned out, I was basically wasted by the time I got to the bottom. I couldn't run any more. I still had a mile more to go. Not only that, but my shins now hurt in a way that they haven't since I started this training (I guess downhills will do that).

It was kind of discouraging, but of course I have barely started training, so I wouldn't expect to be fast for long distances. I just don't want to get winded that quickly. Ah well...I still have 502 days 'til the Moose. Maybe when things pick up, I'll try some kind of wind sprints or something. I would like to boost my ability to process oxygen.

Max Heart Rate

I was talking to Eric the other day and I know he had questions regarding Heart Rate. This book I am reading seems to have a ton of good information in it. It will take some time for me to digest it and make it so that it applies to where I am.

I figured I'd start out with this simple equation for you though.

205.8 - (.685 x age) So 37 years 180bpm for 40 years 178bpm.
He figures this number can be off by as much as 14bpm and also he has found that heart rate "zones" are sport specific. Meaning your swimming zone will be different than your running zone.

Friel included this formula in the book. Though he prefers using his own training system to actually determine not your MAX heart rate but your Lactate Threshold. Which pros use all sorts of equipment which can precisely find this for them. In his book he goes through a process of increasing activity and taking notes along the way. Which after you finish you review and work it out under his guidelines. (I'll go into details about this if you are interested).

To get back to the Max Heart Rate and what most people use as a general guideline, the following link explains it a bit more. Heart Rate Training Zones

I have to say according to that chart and using that formula. Much of my training the last 4 months has been in my 80%-90% zone. Maybe this was wrong to do?! Or is it this chart can't possibly be used in my situation (Mr Couch Potato).
I can tell you that even though my heart rate was often quite high. I never felt that I pushed myself to "burning muscles" or gasping for air. I had no idea what my heart rate was. It wasn't until recently that I started wearing the monitor. Now I've got a million questions and I think this Friel book will have the answers for me.

Well this post has become somewhat of a ramble. My main objective was to give Eric a bit of a basic guideline. I hope to follow this up with some posts regarding "cardiac drift" and "recovery rate". These are two areas I really need to improve and I'm hoping the book will address these issues so I can see how to best improve them.

Monday, January 22, 2007


This may be annoying, but as I come across stuff I don't know in these books I'm going to write them here. Maybe it will help everyone else as well.

So one thing I've been noticing about my heart rate is that on my longer runs, my heart rate recovery time is pretty awful. Well I sweat... a ton! I think one run, my pre-run weight to post run weight was 3-4 pounds different.
I'm certain I don't replace enough water while I'm running. The book explains why hydration is so important. Your blood can actually thicken enough to be tougher to pump. Which causes higher BPM and bad recovery times.
Needless to say, I'm now trying to work taking drinks of water at regular intervals.

Two Books and a Decaf Coffee

As you all know I spend a good part of every day on a train. Well there is no fitness car but I do have time to read. I had a gift card from X-mas so I picked up 2 books today.

Your First Triathlon by Joe Friel and
Total Heart Rate Training by Joe Friel

Surfing the Discussion boards online this guy seems well respected. I'll let you know what I think as I go along. Although I'm not sure any advice I pass along will match the Quality of Craig's "Shorts Message".

On another subject, Shawn mentioned to me that he was going to eliminate caffeine from his diet. I only have one coffee in the AM but I'm thinking I need to go decaf as well. I'm sure it will reduce the number of heart palpitations I have. It seems as if it might lower my resting heart rate over time as well.

Shorts Story

Shawn has requested I share this, and hopefully it will help you. I will pass this story on, and not to offend anyone I will refer to it as the "area" (I believe you can figure it out). Most would say with any kind of distance training that some chaffing would occur. So I took some precautions in my training, but I also did not want to get too carried away in spending money on clothing. So, I did buy some nice running shorts, you know the kind, short and silky with the built in brief that treated the "area" petty fairly. Well as I got closer to the triathlon I realized that this style of shorts was not modest to swim in and problematic when biking. I didn't want to wear strictly biking shorts because they have too large a cameo in the crouch area (feels funny when it gets wet). I couldn't find "reasonably" priced tri-shorts. So I found a pair of running shorts that were a little longer, a little heavier on the outside material.

The shorts had a different liner than my other running shorts. I would say it was similar to a pair of swimming trunks. You know the white mesh style, but it had a real a tight mesh. I trained in them. I even did a bike/run session where I biked 10 miles and ran 2.5. No problem. They worked great.

I did my whole triathlon. I felt tired. My muscle hurt. We went home. I had a company picnic to go to in the afternoon, so I took a shower. I usually seem to back into the shower spray, getting my back wet, which I did this time. I then turned around in the shower, the warm water hit the "area", and I hit the ceiling. Man did that burn. When I stopped jumping around I was able to look down for some further inspection. Well sure enough my wonderful shorts had, for lack of a better term, "brush burned" the tip of the "area".

I tenderly worked around it in the shower. Then the true dilemma occurred at the picnic. We go to a Wave Pool. Of course that is what the kids wanted to do, the WHOLE TIME. It was okay as long as water was around my waist. If I had to to get out or the waves were moving up and down, it was burning! I slept with a pair of silk boxer's on for the next two nights (not for romantic reasons).

With every story there is a moral. Don't' be too cheap to buy the clothes you need or think way ahead of time and wait for them to go on sale.

Understand we are now training for a triathlon twice as long as the one I did. Does that mean twice the burn?

Sunday, January 21, 2007

What I've learned so far.....

UnderArmor/compression shorts are a necessity. Didn't take many runs to find that out the hard way. Same goes for running shoes.

I think that wearing a headband made me be able to run longer. I'm serious, I think that psychologically, having sweat run into my eyes and dripping off my chin, made me feel like it was too much. Now I'm considering some sort of armbands as well.

During a run, when I start losing interest and want to quit. I change my thoughts to the Run along Newfound lake. It would be the final leg of the tri. Everyone else has already finished so they will be there at the finish line cheering me on. I just have to get there.

If only I could modify that cheering me on thing to apply to my eating habits... tough to visualize that.

Keep up the good work everyone!

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Does yardwork count?

So I finally got on the exercize bike for the first time this year. I was riding outside until the first of December. That's really something for NH! I learned that I ABSOLUTELY need a new seat on the exercize bike.
I also hauled a few loads of brush to the dump. The ice storm made a mess of my back yard, fortunately, just branches. I strained my shoulder a bit... note, don't try to look like a stud and carry big logs on your shoulder.
My biggest push in all this will be to get my weight down to something manageable. I'm just shy of 270 now. I'd be really happy if I get to race day at 200. I've done it before. It's good to have a reason to do it.

Blog is getting busy

The blog is really taking off! Which is very fun. I think this is really going to keep us in better contact with each other over the next year or so.

So I was talking with Shawn and he was complaining that he couldn't see when there was a comment to an old post easily. So I've come up with two solutions.

The first is an email based solution which I don't personally like. I get too much email as it is. Please let me know if you think you would like this method and I'll set it up.
Everytime there is something new (post or comment). The site will email you and there will be a link in the email to the new "stuff".

Here is the 2nd method I came up with:

I downloaded the Firefox browser and installed a plugin called Sage. (I googled "Sage RSS" to find it.
Sage is able to track your blog and let you know when there is new
info posted. It puts a Sage leaf in your toolbar. Click on that.
Then you create another bookmark within the Sage Toolbar: "options" Manage Feed List.

Here is the part that I liked about Sage more than using RSS toolbar menus. Comments Tracking!!

if you create a Sage Bookmark that looks like this

it will notify you of any new comment to you blog regardless of which post it was commented to.

Because both of them look exactly the same on the sidebar. I created a comments folder and a Blog folder to put them into.

So once this is setup. You can click the Scan Feeds icon and it will notify you of new info with a Red Star in the icon. From the main window if you prefer to look at the actual blog instead of the reader. Just click on the title of the post/comment.

There you have it. Simple right?! Ha! Not as bad as it looks. Let me know if you want the email notification and I'll get that setup.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Mooseman Counter

The counter may not be accurate. I don't know the exact date of the 2008 Mooseman. I chose June 7th as a guess. Maybe it's the week before. Let me know what you think. I'll change it to match.
Also I hijacked the code, I haven't checked to see if it's adding up to the right number... work in progress.

OK. It seems to be accurate to the day according to this link.

Saturday June 7th 2008

Great White North

Greetings All! It's Jason. Hey, isn't all this exercise fun? The only thing that I'm undecided about is when to take the painkillers; before or after the exercise.

So, we're really going to do this. After my initial conversation with Matt I wondered what I had gotten myself into. Even after reading about the Mooseman I wasn't certain I'd be ready. Now it doesn't seem that formidable a task. I'm enjoying all the exercise and being able to eat more food. This caught me at a good time after losing weight last year and now I have another goal. The only issue I know I'm going to have is making the workouts fit around my work schedule. As you read the spreadsheet you'll notice how it will jump around. There is a lot of mandatory overtime and it makes getting enough rest a bit difficult. Fortunately, my workplace has a gym with the things that I need and we've got a treadmill at home. I'm going to set up a trainer for my bike at the house until the weather changes and I'm able to ride outside. Then I just have to decide when and where to do the swimming. My bathtub isn't big enough.

I like the spreadsheet. Seeing what others are doing is great motivation. The additional posts about training and the obstacles we're all overcoming is oddly comforting to me. And some is just humorous. Like fighting with your equipment and eating pistachios.

I hope to make some strides towards equipment this weekend and try out a new running plan. It's supposed to enable a person to run a 5K in under 25 min. I'll let you know how it goes.

Couple Updates

I still hate my treadmill. I mean I really can't stand it. Last night I couldn't get the thing to not be sloped. So I started running. 5 minutes I was dying. I adjusted the speed down, even walked one minute. 10 minutes I stopped, lifted the back end up, mind you with the mill still spinning and beat the rear wheels into submission. I felt real tough beating an inanimate object, while my heart rate was off the chart. This is the problem with living 15 miles from civilization, on cold days I have to use what I have after I put the kids to bed. But, enough of the woe' to me speech.

I saw Scott, Jason, & Eric have posted to the training spreadsheet. I completed the sheet to the end of January and added Eric to each day (sorry we left you off til now). Let me know of any improvements you would like to see.

Matt, you are impressing me with the amount of time you put into your runs. I think you might feel you are coming on slow, but with that amount of time your running has to pick up.

Y'all keep it up now, you hear, only 493 days until the Mooseman Festival '08. Can we add a countdown counter to the blog. Just wondering.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Pistachio Study

Matt suggested I tell you guys about the pistachio study in which I participated. I'll try to make it short, though it can be difficult for me. The nutrition department at PSU was doing a study to determine what effect eating pistachios regularly had on cholesterol. During this study, I ate nothing at all that wasn't given to me by the study kitchen, except Diet Coke. The first 4 weeks were just standard fare, although healthy. Then we did 6 weeks of getting 10 percent of my calories from pistachios, with the rest being the same stuff as the first part. The third phase, I got 20% of my calories from pistachios, all else remaining the same. That part was a lot of pistachios. I ate them ground up in every meal, and just plain between meals. The standard fare was following a "volumetric" plan, which means that most meals were very large in size or volume, but not high in calories. For example, every week I had a taco salad that was seriously huge. It was a whole bag of bagged lettuce, plus a cut up tomato, some chips, salsa, a pile of corn and a little cheese, plus turkey taco meat infused with chopped up pistachios, of course. I had to make it in our largest mixing bowl just to fit it in one container so I could mix it up well. In between each phase, as well as before we started, they took my blood and checked my BP and did some weird stuff with collapsing my veins and ultrasound, but that's not important. At the beginning and after the first phase, my BP was a fairly typical (for me) 125/80.

What is important is that by the time this study was over, still weighing in at over 260 pounds, and (this is key) doing absolutely NO exercise (I wasn't allowed), I had a BP of 105 over 65, and my "bad" cholesterol had dropped 30-40 points. I found that pretty incredible. So I am now a pistachio evangelist. And I am really excited to see what I can do by continuing to eat them but getting thinner and doing vigorous aerobic activity. I'm looking forward to putting this all together and getting fit again. I am also happy that we have created this project to help with that endeavor. Rock on, my peeps.

Pistachios in every pot!

Well rounded

I went to the gym today for the first time in the new PSU facility at Rec Hall. Every bike and treadmill has its own TV! Huge open room full of stuff. Pretty sweet. I just did a light lifting day to ease myself in, then headed upstairs to the cardio section. I did a 20 minute interval on a recumbent bike, ran a 20 minute interval on the treadmill (which does not go the same speed as the one I have at home when it says it is), then I rowed 1000 meters, which only took 4 or 5 minutes I think, but it was pretty hard. Lots of new muscles in that one, especially in strange places like my shins and hams.
One of the unfortunate problems is that this building doesn't have a pool, so if I want to swim, I need to go to one of the other gyms.
But Craig, I'm sure you're right. I do intend to get some swimming in before I race. I'm just afraid that I will only be able to swim 2 laps right now before I sink to the bottom and drown, so I want to get myself able to stay in my target heartrate range for 20 or 30 minutes at a time comfortably before I worry about the pool.
But you did get me thinking about how my skills will break out. I know for certain that I am not going to be a fast runner. 250 pound guys simply cannot compete with the slender reeds that do these things. I was thinking about high school, and even then, when I was around 200 lbs and quite fit, I still hated running long distances (and by long, I mean over the epic distance of 800 meters), so I'm gonna get killed in the run no matter what, I think. The last time I won a 10k, I was 12.
As for biking, if it were all downhill, I would kick the proverbial bootay, but I imagine I'm gonna have to go up sometimes, so I can't imagine I'll be too fast there either. That was always my best event, but I was much better in flat sprints than the Tour distances.
So swimming might have to be my ace in the hole. Unfortunately it's first. So even if I were to, by some miracle, make it out of the water first, all I would do is watch as the entire racing public passes me in the next two events. Very sad.
But what the heck. I'm just gonna see what I can do. Maybe I'll work on my transitions.

Putting it together!

Shawn's post about saving the swimming for last in his aerobic conditioning lends me to tell a story about what I saw as a strange phenomenon in the triathlon I did last August.

I concentrated on running for the most part. I got real intense about the biking about 8 weeks before hand. The swimming, well, I went once a week for about 8 weeks, but I missed a couple weeks and if it hurt real bad I slowed down. What I realized is that this is what most people do. They didn't focus as much on the swimming. So here was my phenomenon. You know how they say the parts are not equal to the sum. Well my parts did not equal the sum. I finished 89 out of about 275 individuals (I leave out the teams because they are a bunch of cherry pickers). Well I didn't finish 89th or better in any single phase. Swim I was 117, Bike I was 94, and run I was 97. The person in 90th position was (I looked this up to make my point) 160 in the swim, 132 in the bike and 62 in the run, huh. So my belief is to do well in a triathlon you have to be proficient in all three without being a master in one.

Of course if you are a master in one, stop working so hard at that leg and improve another leg. You will lose a lot of energy by thinking you will limp through one leg. My bike suffered because I was not as prepared in the swim as I should have been.

Another point was a guy in my heat came out of the pool (no pool at the Mooseman, just 62 degrees of the cleanest lake in New Hampshire) like a minute after me. He blew by me on the bike like I was standing still. Then I blew by him on the run like he was standing still. I said something to him after the race. He said he was a biker and was trying triathlons and figured he could get by with his bicycling skills. He definitely said he wished he had run a little more.

You may not care about anything above, because you figure you just want to finish and don't have to compete, even so the swim will be miserable if you don't get some laps in.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Looking up.

Craig, the new spreadsheet format looks great. Nice to see what you're doing. I'll have to see if that Cumberland sprint tri fits in my schedule. I would love to do it. Do they have any prizes for the heaviest finisher?
I'm already feeling more fit. Just a couple of weeks of exercise, and things start to happen. My pants get looser, my belt is too big all of a sudden. (This drives my wife crazy, how quickly I can lose weight. I tell her it's because I'm fat.) Of course I'm eating better too. Lots of pistachios. Hopefully, by the end of the semester, if things haven't gotten too stressful, which is a distinct possibility, I will be under 250. I know, this may not seem like a major accomplishment for a tri-athlete, but remember, I am large. 250 for me is pretty good. When I weigh 250, I do not appear to be overweight. Just want to be clear on that. Stop laughing!

Anyway, that's my goal. I signed up for the campus fitness pass, so I have access to all the pools and weight rooms and everything else, so I should be able to actually train all three events in a row at some point. I think I'll just be doing weights, bike and run at the moment though. Swimming will be separate and less frequent. I'll work up to that after I feel reasonably aerobically fit.

Goals - Next Six Months

I played with the spreadsheet for training. Cleaned up items, added some highlights and seperated the days a little nicer. Also made the font smaller and adjusted columns/rows to help fit width to one screen. Let me know if you don't like, I can change.

My running is pitiful. Need to pick it up. I want to run a 5K March 24. A nice flat one on a rails to trails. I hope to run around 25 minutes. Won't get there if I don't get the miles in before hand.

I hope to do a sprint triathlon at the Rocky Gap State Park in Maryland Mid June (Shawn note this only about two hours from you). This is near Cumberland, MD. I will probably have to get a wet suit before then, but could suffer through the cold water. The tri is slated for June 9, but I haven't seen a way to enter yet. 500 Yard swim (I think), 8 mile bike, and 5k (3.1 mile) run. Compared to the previous race I did this a good starting race, my time should be a little quicker in this Rocky Gap tri, then the one I did in Morgantown, WV. A little heavy on the swim and a little light on the bike. I wouldn't mind it being the other way around.

I also have a 5k race in the hometown (Fairview) on the 4th of July. Fun little race. Free to sign up and the first 50 people get a t-shirt. Hope to run under 24 minutes (which would be a new best).

Just so you know if you start racing at all you will get the T-shirts. I also have volunteered for races, to help with traffic control and such. You also get a T-shirt. I think I have got 8 new shirts in the last two years. I can see where this could get out of control.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

4 months in

I started working out on Oct 13th on the treadmill. So I'm officially 4 months into this. I'd guess I've been on the treadmill 3 or 4 times a week for the majority of that time.
The funny part is, the CD trainer I am doing is supposed to be an 8 week program. Well I had to modify that program significantly. It would seem they didn't have a couch potato in mind when they made the program. I'm just now starting on Week 7.
So about 2 weeks left. I think I'm ready to handle these sessions. I did the first hill interval training session last night. I couldn't make it all the way through without a bit of modification, but did get to the end of the program. (check the spreadsheet for more info, there is a link on the sidebar now).
It's supposed to have me ready do run a 5K at 6MPH. So about 32 minutes. I'm hoping it works out, 6MPH still seems fast to me but I have hopes of surpassing that. Just a matter of time I suppose.
If anyone is interested in the CD's let me know. I'm hoping to move to the 10K program soon.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Weight Bench / With Weights

We reorganized the basement today and now have the weight bench in action. Wahoo!
Fortunately, I'm a weakling at the moment so I didn't have to spend much money on weight. Ha!

We are both glad it is setup. With our commutes, getting to a gym is tough to do. This certainly eliminates that excuse.

Now to work on the Y membership for some swimming. Then figure out some sort of biking plan.

Happy Birthday to me!

Eric sent this link to Matt about the NH Marathon/ 10k road race/ 5k race walk. Sounds like it could be a good opportunity to do a test run of the area that the Mooseman will take place. It is exactly the half way marker of our 18month training plan that we are all on, so I thought it could be a fun chance to check everything out and see where we are at in our training regimen.

Not to mention it is happening on my birthday, Sept 29th, so it would be a fun way to celebrate with everyone! The leaves are typically beautiful that time of year and the weather cool for running. It looks like the cost is only $18 for the 10k/5k races.
Check it out and see what you think.

Friday, January 12, 2007

It's the weekend!

I stopped over at our Y last night. There are two very close to us that have pools and a 3rd which is probably 15 minutes away. Of course the trick here is the schedule. It looks like I'd be in the pool somewhere around 7-9:30PM on average.

Interestingly enough, they have a swim program for triathlon training. (extra $). If we end up signing up for the Y, I'll have to try and see if the instructors of this class are worth the $. Of course there is still the "team in training" coaching option out there as well.

Hope to see some posts pop up here this weekend. Later on!

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Training Spreadsheet?

I was thinking it would be nice to have an editable online spreadsheet where we could show what we did training-wise. This would be a good way to compare notes and maybe get on each other's cases if we miss too much.
Google Docs has this capability now, so perhaps I'll produce one of those and see if anyone cares to use it. I'll let you know where it is once I make it.
I walked outside (at a brisk pace with the iPod) about 2 miles today, and ran intervals on my treadmill for one 20 minute cycle. These intervals are quite slow at the moment, but I put them at a level that gets me going aerobically. I am running during the "fast" parts and walking quickly in the slow sections. I guess I'll be happy to get several 10 minute miles strung together. Obviously it would be nice to go faster than that, but each journey begins with a single step...

Please read my "20 years!" post before this one.

I find that reading this can be a bit of a turn off. Please read the next post "20 years" first as it explains my thoughts regarding the Leukemia Fundraiser.

From the "Team in Training" contract

Team in Training (TNT) is a program of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (formerly The Leukemia Society of America). As a TNT volunteer, you will help the Society generate awareness of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and its mission and objectives to attract volunteers for the Society’s programs and activities, advocate for increased research into cures for blood cancers and educate the public.

The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society asks a lot of its TNT volunteers. First, we ask you to commit to train for and participate in a marathon, century ride, triathlon or similar event. We ask you to honor a person on whose behalf you will be completing an event. We also ask you to participate in program-related and organizational activities held at the site of your event. This may include, for example, participation in media events, visits to local patients, meetings with local officials, visits to medical and research facilities conducting leukemia and lymphoma research and TNT workshops.

As a TNT volunteer, you will receive no compensation from the Society. In fact, you will be asked to raise funds for leukemia and lymphoma research, patient service programs and to help defray the costs of the TNT program. Each event that you may wish to volunteer for has a Fundraising Minimum. If you raise the minimum level of funds for that event, you will be eligible to have your expenses of participating in the marathon, century ride, triathlon or similar event paid for by the Society.

In light of this, we take your commitment to raise the Fundraising Minimum seriously. We want all Team In Training volunteers to be successful in raising at least the minimum and have structured the program to provide the support to help you reach your fundraising goal.

Below are the required Fundraising Minimums for each event. These minimums are set to ensure we keep our program costs low, maintaining our credibility to all of our donors and most importantly, maximizing the funds we are able to invest in our mission to cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease and myeloma and improve the quality of life of patients and their families.

Lavaman Triathlon $5,500 (airfare not included)
Vancouver International Marathon $4,600
St. Anthony’s Triathlon $4,100
Rock ‘n’Roll Marathon $3,900
New Jersey Marathon and Long Branch Half $1,900
America’s Most Beautiful Bike Ride $4,600
Wyckoff Triathlon $1,900 (w/o wetsuit) or $2,600 (with wetsuit)

What if I don’t make the minimum? While we understand that this may be the most money you have ever attempted to raise, and you may feel unsure about whether you will be able to do it, we have found that if you follow the recommended guidelines and use the materials provided, you will be successful.

Approximately ten (10) weeks prior to event, we will ask you to submit a “Recommitment Form” confirming your commitment to the team and to raising the Fundraising Minimum set for your event (as listed above). At this time (if you have not already submitted the Fundraising Minimum) we will ask you to secure your position on the team with a credit card or check, acknowledging that you will donate the difference between what you have raised and the Fundraising Minimum. Please note that at Recommitment, you must have raised at least 25% of your Fundraising Minimum and post it to your fundraising account. If you would like to recommit and have not yet raised this amount, TNT will process your credit card (or accept a check in this amount) to cover the difference between your balance and 25% of your Fundraising Minimum. Your credit card information will be placed on file until your account is reviewed on the Charge Date.

Your credit card will not be processed again until approximately two weeks prior to trip departure (Charge Date), if you are still short of your Fundraising Minimum at that time. In the event that you will need to donate the difference, we will contact you first to ensure that all of your current donations have been properly posted to your fundraising account. You will then have until one month after the event date to continue your fundraising and be eligible to receive check reimbursement upon request. At Recommitment, you also have the option to withdraw from the TNT program with no financial obligation.

Expense reimbursement policies It is the Society’s policy NOT to: a) incur meal, lodging or travel expenses that are “lavish or extravagant” or b) pay the traveling expenses of spouses or other traveling companions. Upon request, you are eligible for check reimbursement of the amount(s) charged at Recommitment and/or Charge Date once you have met your Fundraising Minimum or on your Final Fundraising Deadline (two weeks after the event date). Reimbursements are based on your final fundraising statement.

I have read and understand the above. I hereby commit to being a TNT volunteer, and to meet the expectations set forth above. I acknowledge that I am participating in TNT solely to support the mission of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, without any expectation of monetary benefit from my participation in TNT. I also acknowledge that as a TNT volunteer, I will be engaging in fundraising activities on behalf of and as agent of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, and that any funds raised or held pursuant to such activities are the property of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. I commit to raising the Fundraising Minimum for the event for which I am registered or donate the difference by the Charge Date, approximately two weeks prior to event travel.

20 years!

I actually chose the first part of the name of this blog in honor of this fact.
(I thought for sure someone would take offense to being called old.)
Although I truly meant it to be complementary as well.

The second half of the title has a bit of duality as well. Of course deciding to train for a Triathlon is quite exemplary undertaking. Though there is more to it than that. I intended to make this into a Leukemia Fundraiser possibly through "Team in Training". That is what will make this campaign all the more exemplary. I'm hoping others might consider doing so as well.

I spoke to Craig today, and we talked about the "Team in Training" which is the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society fundraising group for events such as this triathlon.
(The link is on the sidebar.)
I really don't have all the details of it figured out yet but here is what I've gathered so far.

I spoke to my regional office of "Team in Training" last week. I had thought that it would be similar to many other types of fundraisers I've donated to. Where people simply donate money to your cause. There is more to it than that. Rather than try to explain it all I'm going to create an additional post and let you read it yourself.

I haven't decided that I will sign up for this yet. Here is why:
1) I'm not sure if their training schedule will fit my schedule at all.

2) As you can see it is quite a bit of money they expect you to raise, if Genine and I both sign up, double that.

3) This is the big one. Nathan's Dr. at the children's hospital was fantastic. We could possibly fund Dr Guinan's research directly. Here is why I have to do some homework before deciding.
I'm sure if we do Team in Training. Bloomingdale's will match whatever donation Genine makes to the L&L Society. I have to find out if this would be the case if we funded Dr. Guinan directly.
If we decide to fund Dr. Guinan directly and do our own fundraiser. I figured I would build a website which would tell people what is is we are all trying to do, and also how to donate money to the cause.

I welcome any feedback regarding this and will answer any questions I can. I just wanted to put my ideas regarding the fundraiser out there so everyone knows what I'm thinking.

20 Year Reunion

This is for Matt, as well as others.

Upon talking with my wife about this endeavor, she made me realize that it will be 20 Years in 2008 since we went to Matt's after graduation. I was looking at the list of people interested and almost all went that summer (except Scott (Matt's brother-in-law) sorry man but you weren't there). I didn't know if you had thought about this, but Matt's idea begins to take on some more significance.

So, I would even propose if you don't feel like partcipating in the triathlon, you still try to make it, just for a nice vacation/reunion. Just my thoughts.

Tuesday, January 9, 2007

Questions for Craig:

What did you invest in gear wise in order to do your last Triathlon?
I'm wondering what kind of bike did you use?
What if any bike, shoes/pedals?
Did your event require a wetsuit?
Do you have any training equipment at home?
Or did you just go outside and put in the miles?

I'm asking because I just finished putting together the weight bench we got for Xmas.
Now I've got a place to lie down. (we don't have any bars or weights).

I've been using the iFit CD series with my treadmill for a 5K run. It's supposed to get me up to a 10 minute mile pace. I'm getting there.
If anyone else happens to have an iFit compatible treadmill let me know. I'll be picking up the 10K trainer CDs for it as well.

I'm in.

Hi, everyone. Shawn here. This is just my post to say I'm onboard.
I got on the treadmill for the last two days, so Ironman can't be far away.
I tried to get Craig to do a triathlon for about 10 years, then he went and did one without me, so I vowed that this is the year I participate in my first one, hopefully working up to the more serious Mooseman '08 International distance.
Craig, we should discuss one we can do together in '07.
I am starting a new category in Triathlons. You know the Clydesdales? Those guys got nothing on me. They're tiny. Shrimps. I'm an overweight, pregnant Clydesdale. So this should be quite an endeavor.
I'm looking forward to motivating each other.

Triathlon - Training

Wow, that is a pretty big list of people. It would be awesome to see you all particpate in the Mooseman in 2008. That would be quite a reunion. If you are serious and at this point we all are serious, about a triathlon, I have a couple sites for you. This site contains some great training programs. You click the state on the left hand column and see what races are in your state of choice. Also, they archive past events, so you can check out some results from past years.

Just a note about triathlons and specifaclly the Mooseman. There are essentially four distances in a triathlons

A. IronMan - The truly Insane - 3.8km (2.4Miles) SWIM, 180KM (112 miles BIKE), and 42.195kM (26.2 miles) RUN. - THEY CUT YOU OFF AT 16 HOURS (Best athletes just over eight hours)
B. Half IronMan - Yea your still somewhat Insane - 1.2 miles Swim, 56 miles bike, and 13.1 miles - They cut off at 8 hours. (Best guys just over four hours)
C. International Distance - Now your just a little crazy - .93 mile swim, 27.25 miles bike, and 6.2 miles run - They usually cut you off at 5 hours. (Best usualy 2 hours, you seeing the pattern)
D. Sprint Distance - A little suffering you can finish - .5 mile swim, 12.4 miles bike and 3.1 miles run - usually no cut off, 2.5 hours is about the slowest time. (Best Around an hour)

Alright now that you know this, the Mooseman has two distances - International on a Saturday and Half IronMan on the Sunday.

I am telling you all this because my intention is to do the International distance, if you look at the training schedule from Tri-newbie above, you will realize training time wise that will push you. By all means the Mooseman looks like a weekend festival and I would hang around to see someone do the Half the next day.

Monday, January 8, 2007

I figured we needed a forum.

Hey everyone,

Little did I know that when I asked around about wanting to do the Mooseman Triathlon 2008 that basically everyone would give it a shot.

I created this blog for us so that we can communicate on this subject to the entire group without having to fill our email inbox. Also because it archives it will serve as what I expect to be an interesting journal.

There are a couple ways to post here. One is to accept an invite from me and become a co-author of the site. The other is simply to email your post to an address I will provide you with. (if you email, put your initials at the head of the subject line so we know who is submitting).
I will send out an email to everyone soon.

There is plenty more to talk about but I just wanted to get this started.

Current "Team"
Proving we are all crazy.....

Scott (my brother in law)

Eric (considering the aquabike)