Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Hello, I am back...did you miss me?

Just a quick post to let you know that I am back.  I believe that I was done with Ironman after CDA but the tickets are booked and I am headed to Phoenix in a few weeks.  I will be volunteering at IMAZ 2012 and the following day with be signing up for IMAZ 2013. 

I have changed my blog name because I will be spending almost all my training time and efforts out here in Saudi Aurora with the cows and such.  I have lots to talk about and will spill the beans soon but for now I need to hit the pool and get ready for Trick or Treating with the kids. 

What a fun way to end October! 


Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Ironman Bike and Run

I was very excited to start the longest ride I have done without stopping especially after having such a good swim.  I was also very excited to see Anne since I had not seen her yet.  The bike course was two loops with the transition being in the middle.  You had a 15 mile out and back to transition and then out the other side for a 40 mile out and back.  We had to do this twice.  The first out and back was pretty low key with very few hills and was a great spot to get my bearing.  As I started to settle down I was excited and hoping that I would see Anne early and when I spotted the Colorado support crew ahead and was able to narrow my focus in on Anne I slowed down to a stop and give her a big kiss.  She means the world to me and to have her out supporting my Ironman made the day all that more perfect.

Because I had done a pretty fast swim I started the bike with guys and gals that were rocking the bike course and for me I had two goals.  Number one was to keep my average HR for the entire bike ride to be under 150 BPM and my second goal was to not allow my HR to spike above 165 while climbing.  For me that meant that I had to settle down and allow people to pass me and not let it affect my day.  I was use to this because on most of my races I get out of the water pretty quick and then the fast riders and runners that are not so great in the water have to make up the lost time.  What I did not realize was how many of those swimmers were at Ironman CDA.  The entire day I was getting passed.  Passed on the flats, hills and turns and so I had to make a game of it since I was going to be out on the course for 7-8 hours.  As someone came by me I would give them a nickname and try to get them to talk to me.  The first 10 times I tried this I was able to get some pretty funny reactions both positive and negative from the fast riders.
The 1st turn came fast I was headed back into town were Anne and the crew was and I was again really excited to see them.  I had just been passed by Peter Atwater who was looking to have a good day and it was fun to see one of my training partners out so strong.  Anne was loud and gave me the boost that I needed to carry me into the next 40 miles of hills. 

The hills again were pretty funny since I had to keep my HR down and sometimes that was a REALLY slow speed.  It allowed me to cheer on the Pro’s and the really fast Age Groupers.  A few  of the Colorado crew would podium the next day and to see them in action was great. 

The first lap went pretty quick if 3+ hours can be considered quick and I was getting excited to see Anne again.  I passed her with a great smile and was off to the small out and back starting lap two.  The second send off and my last 40 miles on the bike was pretty hard.  I hit a low spot until I was able to see my coach Beth and chat it up with her a bit.  OK, I did not chat I sang the “Red Solo Cup” song and made a few people around me smile.  The hills on the second loop seemed to be higher than the first and the down hills were shorter but after a long time I was headed back to town and getting my arms wrapped around the run that I had a head of me.  The last climb the sun decided to finally show up and the temperature started to rise.  Usually not a good sign for me but I had done such a great job keeping to my goals that I was thinking I would be OK.

Coming out of transition I had the sun block girls lather me up and I was headed out the run shoot onto the course.  The crowds at Ironman are RIDICULOUS.  They spend all day cheering for everyone and to feed off that was very helpful.  We had a climb right out of the shoot and I had to slow down like 4 times to get my HR down to my goal effort.  I saw Anne and the crew again at the same area and felt a jolt of power.  It was at this point that I realized I had been going for over 8 hours now and had a marathon to run.  My HR spiked when I started to think about the time and the effort it would take and I was even able to cry until I pulled myself out of it and focus on 1 mile goals and not the total distance.
The run course was next to the first out and back of the bike and so it was fun to be running next to the lake and have the view that we did.  I climbed the first hill and did well on the flats eating, drinking and working to keep my effort consistent.  The second hill I started to slowly run up but I ended up walking since it was so long and steep.  I saw Peter coming down the hill looking good keeping a steady hard effort. 
The run course allowed me to be even closer to all my friends and we all made eye contact, hand signs and comments to each other depending on where they were.  I made it to the run turn and headed back towards town.  It was going well but I realized that I had stopped sweating which was not a good sign.  I slowed down again and took a lot more aid as I passed the next mile marker.  Over the next 30 minutes and almost half way done I started to feel my energy disappear and I knew what was coming.  I was dehydrated and heading to a bad spot.  I felt my stomach turn and I made the choice at mile 9 to walk.  The next 10 minutes trying to deal with my present situation was REALLY, REALLY hard for me.  I was in a bad place and it took all that I had to just keep walking.  Runner after runner would pass me and the spectators would cheer me on and I was pissed.  I had done everything that my plan called for to the tee and I was now doing what I did not what to do on the run and that was walk.  I had over 14 miles left and it was going to be a very long day.  I passed the next aid station and did not take anything but had to leave a token gift behind the port-a-potty.  I took a sip of water and started to walk to the run turn around where Anne and the support crew were stationed. 

My spirit was low, my body was hurting, I had been moving for over 11 hours and now I had 13.1 miles to go.  I did not want my day to end this way but still wanted to finish.  Coming down the gentle grade where Anne was gave her time to cross the road and as I approached her I stopped, turned and put my head down on the fence.   I felt like stopping.  I told her I had burned up and was going to have to walk the rest of the day to finish and had a pretty low spirit.  She told me she loved me and I would finish and would be an Ironman just as soon as I walked the second half of the run.  That sparked something inside me and I stood up and the idea of stopping never entered my mind again.  I had a quarter mile to the turn-a-round which seemed like a mile and then I was back to where Anne was.  She gave me a cold bottle of water and told me to take little sips and to keep walking.  She started to walk with me and had the intentions to walk the whole way until I told her it was not allowed.  She is my rock and understood what I was going through and was going to help even if it was walking next to me.  I gave her a quick hug and told her I would be back in 3.5 hours.  That was what my mind calculated the walk time would take me.  The next thing I remember was looking at the front yard of one of the houses on the run course.  The grass was shaded and looked so inviting so I laid down and closed my eyes.  Someone asked if I was OK (NO I WAS NOT is what my mind was thinking) and all I could say was “yep just taking a rest”.  I think I could have stayed laying on the cool grass for a long time but I had to get up and keep going.  My feet hurt and my toes were swollen and so I had to loosen up my laces to stop the pain.  One by one all my friends would pass me as they were headed to the finish with what every positive comment they could give.  They were all in the last push of such a long day and anything they gave was huge.  I passed the next aid station and they offered warm chicken broth and it tasted great.  The comments that I was getting from the crowd stopped bothering me and I really felt that they were genuine.   I was going to finish this race and regardless of when I crossed the finish line I would be an IRONMAN.  The next few miles were better and I was able to start thinking clearly.  I picked up my walking pace and started to look at my watch.  I realized I could walk a pretty quick mile if I tried and if I really pushed my walk I could finish under my goal time of 14 hours.  The next aid station I took coke and chips and within a minute of drinking the coke I felt strength return to my body.  The next aid station I drank two cups of coke and more chips and again I felt more strength return.  I looked at my watch and determined that I needed to run a bit to get under 14 hours.  I decided that if I kept feeling better I would run the last 3 miles and if I was lucky I would cross the finish line just under 14 hours.  I was trying to walk fast and feel good when I saw Beth on her way back to town.  She actually stopped and talked to me for a minute and gave me as much positive MoJo as she could.  She took off again and went to finish her first Ironman having a pretty good day.  I had 1 mile to the bottom of the big hill were the run turn-a-round was and I decided that I would try to run just a few block.  I picked up my head, put a smile back on my face and started to run very slowly.   It worked, I could run again so I decided that I would run just a few blocks but that turned into many more.  I was able to run and so I did not want to stop.  I kept running all the way to the bottom of the hill. 

 That mile was huge for me because for the first time ever in a race I was able to come back from a death march to the finish.  The hill seemed to be smaller than the first time and as I crested the top and started to go down the back side I could see the run turn-a-round.  I was nearly 6 miles away from finishing my first Ironman and I was on target to get it done in less than 14 hours.  I hit the timing mat and the familiar beep sounded which said I was on my way to the finish.  I walked back up the backside of the hill and took on some more coke and chips.  I looked at my watch and determined that the mile I ran gave me 2 minutes to work with.  That gave me a boost and I started to run again but this time my feet were not the only ones running.  I had picked up some company and I was pulling others from a walk to a slow run.  We ran down the hill and towards the bottom I felt the best I had in the past 5 hours.  The guy walking in front of me was talking to a friend on a bike and as I approached them he started to take off.  I yelled “hey bike guy” and he turned around.  I asked if he had a phone and he said yes.  I asked if he would relay a message for me and he called Anne.  He got her VM and left the message “Tyler is running and will be to the finish shoot in about an hour”.  The last time I left her I said “I will see you in 3.5 hours and that was not going to be the case”.  My watch beeped which told me I had finished another mile and so I looked to see that my last mile was a 9:17 which was the fastest of the day.  I had 5 more miles to go and I now had 2 people holding on to me as we ran passed all the walkers towards the finish.  The next three miles were spent digging deep and keeping a steady pace to allow me to possible make it to the finish running.  I was now 137.6 miles done and 3 mile to the finish.  Now I was running on parts of the run course where I had walked earlier.  I passed the port-a-potty where I left my token gift and was now only two miles out. 

The last mile was amazing, the two people that were running with me had dropped off and I was again all along to finish the race.  I was approaching the split there those that had another lap would go right and those that were done would go left.  I took the left turn running and made the right turn towards the finish line.  I was a few blocks away but the crowd was crazy and I was able to feed off of them.  I was going to finish under 14 hours and was going to be an Ironman.  I saw Peter, Sonja, Michelle, Michael and others and gave them running high fives.  I was looking for Anne but did not see her yet.  I was just a few hundred feet away and the crowd on each side had layers of people cheering.  I was jumping, yelling and going from side to side giving high fives to everyone.  I was soaking up the moment and doing what I had imagined on so many workouts this past year .  I stopped short of the finish line and did a little dance.  I was caught up in the moment and loved it.  I took all of it in and can tell you it was nothing short of what was talked about by others.

I became an Ironman on June 24th 2012 after 13 hours and 42 minutes of effort.  I AM AN IRONMAN and will have the memory of that day for the rest of my life.

Anne, you are my Rock and I am so glad that you were there to help me make it to the finish line.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Ironman CDA 2012 Swim

Couer d’ Alene Idaho is an amazing place with the lake sitting at the bottom of all the pine trees on the hills edges it’s a place that feels magical.  When I arrived the city was alive gearing up for the Ironman Triathlon that was about to happen for the 10th time.  CDA has more volunetters that sign up to help than athletes that show up on race day.  Some years is has nearly been a 2-1 ratio making it the best run race to date.

Anne and I at the swim beach at Lake Couer d' Alene
Nicole, Anne, Michele and Nancy were the best support crew EVER.  Beth and Keith were my constant training partners that I was very excited to spend the race day with!
My calm before the storm!  I was checked in and ready to race.

The days leading up to the race were spent working on last minute race plans, testing the water (which was really cold both times that I tried swimming in it) and getting myself in a mental place that would allow me to spent almost an entire day racing.  It was a sun up to sun down challenge that could not last longer than 17 hours.  I was gearing up for my first try at the Ironman distance triathlon.  Anne arrived the day before and she went straight to work making my life easier and doing everything she could to help me get ready.  We were staying in a house with the 3 others that arrived at Panera Bread Company 1 year before and signed up together.  We also added a few to bring the total racer count to 6. 

I was able to sleep really well the night before and I was able to get my transition set up just the way I wanted.  I went for a jog and made sure that all systems were a go and then headed to put on my wet suit with 2300 fellow racers.  The cannon was set to go off at 7am as a signal to start the day.  2300 people were placed on a very narrow beach front for a two loop swim both being 1.2 miles long.  Michele, Keith and I made a mad dash for the right side of the group and placed ourselves right up front.  We were going to swim the longer distance to the turn buoy but felt we could have clearer water doing so.  I WAS WRONG. 

The second the cannon fired I was off pushing the pace pretty quick from the start to get away from the masses.  I had practiced my swim start a ton of times over the last few months.  The problem I had was 500 others were trying to follow the same plan I was and I had no breathing room and was getting kicked, hit and pushed around just like I was told, read about and saw on TV.  I felt that they exaggerated the feelings and it would not be that bad.  I was a good swimmer and should have no problem finding clear water but not today.  I made the first turn, second turn and still had to fight to swim smooth and fast. 
I kept calm and did not even feel the temperature of the water the entire race.  All the stress over cold water and I could care less, I was trying to get away from the other crazy swimmers.   The sound of the announcer was loud even several hundred yards from the beach and I was getting pumped up to start the second lap.  I touched sand and was up on my feel running to around the turn and off to the second lap.  I looked at the clock and saw that I was done in 32 minutes and was jazzed.  I could hear my name being yelled but could not place it. I found out later that Anne and Shannon were at the turn and it was her yelling my name.  My race plan after a quick start was to go at a steady, medium effort and today that felt pretty fast.  The second lap was just a repeat of the fist with the one exception being that on the last leg back I was able to swim without getting touched.  I hit the sand again and was up and trotting to the transition tent. 
 The amount of people cheering at the swim beach was unbelievable, thousands of people cheering and yelling.  As I made my way up the beach I heard my name again and was able to focus this time on Nancy and Michele and gave them high fives and then headed over to the wet suit strippers.  Rather than going straight to transition I ran to the T1 bag area and yelled my race number to several volunteers.  They had my bag held high in the air by the time I made my way down the row and I was moving into the changing tent. 

These are the bags you grab before heading to the changing tent in T1

This was the first race where they have separate male and female changing tents to get ready for the 112 mile bike journey that I had ahead of me.  I took a few seconds to look around at the mass of people coming into the tent and changing.  What a day it was turning out to be.  I was loving it at this point and was ready to take on the rest of the day with excitement.
I finished the swim in 1:07:27 feeling really good and excited about the rest of the day!

Friday, May 4, 2012

Race Week Knoxville Rev3 70.3

This is my first Triathlon of the season and on top of that one that I am traveling to. I find it kind of funny trying to remember all the items that I will need to pack and get ready for this race. I am sure I will forget something and that is why the Expo's are fun, I usually need to buy something. I am grateful that I have Tony going on this trip with me and I am a bit sad to leave behind Beth, John and Keith. We have been training together for the last 6 months and I am the only one that will be doing a tune up race before IMCDA. I am excited to have Sonja and Michelle there working the event for Rev3 and figure I will get some extra love at transition (Maybe a spot near the pro's or something cool like that). It is very evident that I have had to slow down this year to make my goals and as I work on my game plan for Sunday I get excited to see how it will unfold. I am not looking for a time result per say but executing a game plan all the way to the finish.  I have been successful on my last 3 70.3’s walking the last 4-6 miles of the run completely destroyed.  I have made several of my long training rides the past months on the course of my last 70.3 that I did in Denver called Harvest Moon. This course ate my lunch and over the last few rides I have come to see the results of my new training efforts. I expect that I will have a heart rate average between 20-25 beats per minute below my last 70.3 on both the bike and the run. What is very amazing to me is that I do not suspect that my time will be much slower. I do not know for sure because it will be a very hot race with 90 degrees as the high in Knoxville and heat takes its toll on me. I love race week and I am very thankful to Anne for making is a non-issue for me to go. I will keep her and the kids in my mind not as I try to go faster but as I try to be smart. Knoxville here I come!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Seeing Progress

I just finished my largest build segment to date. The last few workouts I did everything that I could to just hold on, I was feeling really tired and warn out. I had a 4 hour bike on Saturday followed by a 45 min run and was able to do it from my door step with a great new training partner Peter. We are matched really well and are helping each other get ready for CDA. The reason I posted that I am seeing progress is the fact that I was able to ride at a steady pace for 4 hours and then transition off the bike to a solid run. I am usually cooked by this time and do what ever I can to hold on and Saturday I was running at very solid 160-165 HR and a pace going up and down near the 10/min pace. As I write this I am feeling more confident in my plan to slow down to go faster. The biggest test of the last year and more particular the past 6 months will be in 14 days. I have never ran the last half of a 70.3 but have walked a perfect 3 for 3. I am excited to test what I have learned, test what I can do when making smart decisions. Today I am really excited for Rev3 Knoxville 70.3. I am excited to see the progress translate to a race performance. I am excited to have the support of my family. I know that Anne is getting sick and tired of hearing my pace/BPM's Average/Speed/Effort each day. She is kind, listens and then tells me how proud of me she is and that I am doing great! I am one lucky guy even on days where my resting HR is elevated and I am very nervous to tackle a Z3 run with slight pickups for 90 minutes.....She tells me that I will do great and she will see me later. Anne is my biggest fan and gets what I am doing and I love her for that.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

What a difference your Heart can make!

This past weekend I had a 5 hour brick which was made up by a 1 hour swim at a steady pace followed by a bike ride. I had a new seat put on my TT bike and had an updated fit to help me on the longer distance rides. My goal for the bike was to see if I could ride and manage my HR better as the terrain and time extended. I wanted to go back to the Harvest Moon course since it killed me on the last leg of the ride this past fall. I remember how I felt that day and how I hoped I would feel at the same spot riding a lot smarter today.
I was riding alone and so I took it really easy out to where I would start my effort. The wind as predicted was pretty bad (I hate it when the weather men are right) blowing north. I was riding east feeling the effects of the wind and knowing that my first turn was a left turn so the wind would be at my back. I prepared for an even bigger battle on the second half of the course with it being mostly up hill and now with a direct head wind. The left turn on Watkins road came pretty fast and as I was making a small climb I was shifting to harder gears because the wind was pushing me up the hill. For the next 10 mile I was pushing my 11 cog as best as I could and still maxing out several times because of the downhill section and the tail wind.
The sun was on my right shoulder and as I would look left I could see my shadow and was able to watch my legs moving like pistons. It was a very cool feeling to be moving as fast as I was, seeing my body position as smooth as it looked while my legs were driving up and down. I watch the pro's do this all the time and for the first time I felt like they did. Only difference is I had a 20 mile wind at my back and I was going down hill. This fun leg of the ride ended way too quickly and I made a right turn onto Colfax road where I would ride for the next 15 miles.
The fun was over because the wind had moved from my back to my side and I had to work hard to keep the bike going straight. This section of the ride was again downhill with only a few little rollers to allow you to stand up and stretch. I felt good on this section keeping my effort and HR right where I wanted it the whole time. I fueled up again in Bennett and was soon back on my bike ready to make the right turn into the wind and the climbing that would be the next 25 miles of my day.
I decided that I would take the speed data off my Garmin and stay focused on HR for the next section. It was as bad a I was thinking it would be so I settled in and tried to keep my legs moving and my HR down. Every time I allowed my mind to drift I would come back and I would be way over my desired HR Max for the day. I ended up turning on a HR alarm when I exceed 150BPM's and that would help me know when I was not paying attention. I was alone out on this section with no cars passing me and no one out working. No one really wanted to be out in this wind on the Eastern plains. I made it to the right turn back onto Quincy road where I had 2 big climbs left. I moved to my lowest gear for the first time of the day and kept slowing down to keep my HR below the alarm. I was now on my bike for over 3 hours which was my longest ride of the year. I had to laugh as I felt I would be faster walking some of the sections of this long drawn out climb. The top came and so did the next one with the same smile wondering if I could walk the hill faster.
I started to go down hill a bit towards home and I was very pleased with my results. Nothing else mattered this day except that I was able to control my HR and keep it under 150BPM's on this ride. I was eager to look at the results but that would come a little later since I was rushing home to make it on time to Josh's birthday party.
Josh turned 9 today and had a blast at the Gym where we had his party. We then ran to Webelos next and by the time I was able to stop and relax it was nearly 5pm. This was the biggest sign that the type of training I am doing will net me the endurance to keep going all day.
Later that night I loaded my data onto Garmin and took a look. I smiled when I saw that I had a HR average of 146 for the day. My speed was only 1 MPH less than when I raced the Harvest Moon course and died last fall. I am very excited with my training and look forward to REV3 70.3 Knoxville in a 6 weeks. Of the 3 70.3's I have done I have never ran across the finish line and at Harvest Moon I had a 2:58 run errrrr walk to finish that day. I look forward to running off the bike and being in control of my next race.

Thanks for the help Coach Beth,

Love you Anne,


Monday, March 19, 2012

Week 10-11 and Canyonlands Half Marathon race report

The past several weeks were resting weeks as I planned to run in the Moab Canyonlands Half Marathon. I wanted to see what the past few months had done for me in base building and see if I could again execute on a longer event not by being fast but being smart in a longer race.
I had several good workouts leading up the race week and then spent most of the week in Valencia working with clients that came into town. Landing in Grand Junction on Thursday afternoon was a great start to the weekend and it was fun to connect with John, Nicole, Nancy, Keith and Beth. We made it to Moab in time to get a late afternoon ride in. We stayed on the south end of town and headed up towards the La Sal Mountain range. The weather was great and it was nice to get some sun on our backs. Months on the trainer really allow you to be thankful when you get back outside.

The race started at 10am so we all had a pretty easy morning getting food and things set-up. The group of runners grew as Tony, the Cross’s, Dave and Margaret and Paula and Scott joined us in Moab and ran the 5 miler or Half. We had to take a school bus up the canyon next to the Colorado river and were dropped off with plenty of time to get in a good warm-up run. I lost the group after warm-up and decided to seed myself near the 2:20 pace group. My goal coming into the event was to execute a steady build and not to exceed the ability to control my effort over the entire event knowing that the last 3 miles were the courses toughest miles.

The gun went off and we slowly moved forward for two minutes as the faster runners took off. I hit start on the Garmin and I was off trying to keep the first mile really easy. It was a pretty steep downhill and I was passed by waves and waves of people even thought I seeded myself near the 10-11 minute mile pace groups. This continued for the first 3 miles where I did not pass one person and was passed by hundreds of others maybe even thousands! Mile 1-3 (10:19, 10:30, 10:33). I felt really good with the first 3 miles and as we passed by marker 3 I wanted to pick-up the pace slowly and build for the next 7 miles. It was kind of funny because just as I started to increase my speed at the start of mile 4 the wave of people passing me stopped and I alone began to move forward though the sea of runners. Mile 4-6 (10:01, 9:52, 9:11). I was told that the first 6 miles of the race were going to be the fastest and it would be a hard 2nd half. To complicate my race plan the wind today was pretty aggressive and the sun was out and it was hot. I was not carrying any water and relied on the aid stations. I had wanted to break 2 hour mark for my first half marathon but as I pushed my effort on 7, 8 and 9 I came to terms with the fact that I would not. I focused on my main goal of execution and keep smiling as I was passing hundreds of people. Mile 7-9 ( 9:17, 8:51, 8:49 ) Mile 10-13.1 had a pretty good hill climb and then we exited out of the canyon and hit a steady climb to the finish line. I made the decision to not push any harder than what I could maintain for the next 3 miles since I was at the top end of my effort and holding steady. I was running near 185bpm’s for the last 2 miles and had to get 3 more done. When the runners came out of the canyon we went under the road and had a little climb back up to the main road. I made the right turn and looked up and saw nothing but people walking the river and cool canyon to look at was gone and it was the ugly part of the race couse. The wind was pretty extreme at this point and the effort to keep the same pace as the last mile of the canyon was not a reality for me. I was not able to tuck behind anyone since most runners were running slower than I was at this point OR walking. I did my best to stay in control and deal with the pain that I was in after running so hot for nearly 45 minutes. I had 2 (ish) miles left and I wanted to keep it even. I closed my eyes and thought of Anne and the kids and that helped carry me to the last mile. I still was running pretty strong and passing groups of people walking or running a lot slower. I saw Keith towards the last quarter mile and we ran in together. (He kept his tradition alive and ran up the canyon first with John so ended up running near 24 miles that day)

I had seen him and John at the start of the race and then Dave at mile 12 but no one else the entire race. I kept the gas on the entire day and did not die in the 2nd half. I was able to have a steady climb and felt great with my finish. I loved the race, the group that I ran it with and most of all that I was able to run smart. My training is paying off and I excited to continue to push towards IMCDA. I will keep working on building my base and making the training time pay off. I am so thankful for coach Beth to help me get to where I am today and to Anne and the kids for allowing me to chase my dream. This weekend gave me more confidence in what I can do and the desire to train hard again. I have a few builds until Rev3 Knoxville 70.3 Triathlon in May and look forward to training smart. Mile 10-13.1 ( 9:04, 10:05, 9:35 ) Total time 2:07:25
Love you Anne,

Monday, March 5, 2012

Week 9 of IM training

The week ended with a group ride outside in 60 degree weather. The sun was beating down on our necks and backs and it was much needed warmth. We spent as much time talking and laughing as we did riding since most of us had not been off our trainers for several months. For me it was a great end to the biggest training week so far in this IM build.
I completed 11 of 13 activities that were on my schedule for a total of just under 16 hours of training. This week had some unusual parts to it as I did most of the workouts before work or during lunch. Lunch time on Thursday I had a 1:15 run and when I left the car the temperature gauge showed 40 degrees so I went in shorts and a few layers on top. In that hour the weather changed and ended up snowing the last 20 minutes. The temperature dropped nearly 20 degrees in that hour and the only thing I could do was laugh.
Anne and the kids seemed to be good this week and on Saturday we had a great ski day with Rob and Kristin’s families. We took Liv up since John and Jenn are cruising in the Panama Cannel.
It was a very tiring week this week but my spirits were really high. I know that I have several more weeks with this type of volume in them and I hope for the ability to have as good of an attitude as I did this week. I am pleased with the progress on my base build in my mind. I have not seen much of any change in my HR/Effort yet but I am sure it will come around. A few friends that were signed up to do the IM with us have dropped for different reasons and now some of my thoughts are just about getting to the starting line.
This next week the volume drops down and it seems like a very easy week. I have the Canyon Lands half Marathon in two weeks and I am looking forward to racing a half marathon and seeing what I can do.
Thanks Anne for the support this week and making it easy for me to chase a dream.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Week 8 of IM training

Today, February 26th 2012 marks the birthday day of my best friend. She turned 34 and we spent the day doing all the things that she wanted. We had a leisure morning with the news paper, coffee and an egg breakfast. The kids presented her with a new cordless drill and a caramel apple from Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory. We gave her the handmade card that we worked on a few days earlier and told Mom whatever she wanted to do we would do for her birthday. We went shopping at IKEA and had lunch there as well as taking it really easy with no workouts and a lot more television time. We are about to have breakfast for dinner and game night. I hope that she had a great day.
Looking back on this week I had to work really hard to get my training in and the hours that I did do seemed to be more difficult than last week. This week was a build and I had 12.5 hours of training to get in.
Rather than a grocery list of what happed this week I thought that I would write down some of the more interesting parts surrounding training this week.

1. Monday-During a run in Cherry Creek Res alone in the afternoon I decided I was very cold and underdressed but decided to gut it out. The chills came over me and stayed with me for a few days when I saw 3 Life Flight helicopters fly south over CCR as I was starting a tempo effort and kept me distracted from focusing on my run. I then saw them return together 30 minutes later heading north. It looked like they were heading for Children’s Hospital and I have been sad for the victims, families and the entire situation sense then.

2. Tuesday- Beth gave me the same Hypoxic swim set that I titled “Nasty” last week and I was tired and spent way too much time stressing about getting it done. I finished it but it took a lot more out of me this time with most being mental.

3. Thursday – We had plans to do a computrainer ride over in Lakewood (30 Minutes from my house in the early morning with good weather). I woke up early because I was told we would have a little snow. I pulled out of my driveway 1:15 minutes before the ride started and 6 inches of fresh snow. I pulled into the parking lot 5 minutes late passing 6 accidents and had a great ride with Beth and John.

4. Saturday- I switched my Sunday heavy day workout schedule to Saturday and had a great time swimming with Keith. We pushed each other and had a lot of fun doing it. The run was without gloves, no more than 2 layers up top and I was even able to not wear a hat. I put a visor on and enjoyed the warm sun for the first time in several weeks. I paid for it by having a ring appear after I got home and took my visor off. My head is sunburned badly and I look like a dork.

Next week is a huge week as my last build week and hope for success in getting it all done. I have 15 hours on the schedule and hope that I can get it all done. I have a huge amount of gratitude to Anne and the kids for allowing me to chase a dream that I have had for many years. I am very surprised how much this takes away from my life not only in training and money but this week I was not able to stay awake past 9pm 3 nights up from 2 last week. Anne is wondering how to adjust bedtime to include her very grownup but tired husband!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Week 7 of IM training recap

Week 7 of IM training recap
This week as I look back was a big week. The volume increased 3 hours over last week and the efforts of the workouts took a lot more out of me. I was able to get out of the basement (treadmill and trainer) and outside more this week than the last two combined. I did not travel this week and we had Grandpa Randy Crocker come into town on Thursday. Jackson had his Blue and Gold banquet and crossed over to the boy scouts. The scout troop that he joined has 3 big camp outs this summer with the first one in a month. I am invited but will sleep in a separate cabin from the 1st year scouts……My boys are growing up!
Saturday Jackson, Josh and I went skiing with John, Liv, Andrew, Rob, Max, Thomas and we stayed together most of the day. It was a great day with really no wind and a big blue sky. We had a blast and closed the lifts down. It was the first time skiing with Rob and Thomas and they snowboard which made it fun for us since we normally are the only snowboarders in the family.
I enjoyed the strength workouts that I was faced with this week because I really did not know the outcome. I month ago I was not able to finish a swim set because I maxed out and had to stop. That was really hard for me and I have worked at really not to push my effort more than I can sustain for the entire workout. I was required to elevate my efforts this week more than I have in a long time. It was good to feel tired; in fact I was in bed sleeping two nights this week before 9:30pm. The sad part of it was the nights were over the weekend and I was a terrible date for Anne. Glad her Dad is here and able to keep her company.
I have the Canyon Lands ½ marathon in less than a month and I am working towards a good run that day. I am planning on running it fast and seeing what my wheels (feet) will do. I am also looking at a unique race in Las Vegas called the Ledman Triathlon on March 31st. The swim is 2.4K the bike is 124K and the run is an 8.1 mile all uphill effort. This race is not going to be a fast race but a chance to make sure I can manage my effort and stay consistent the entire time to the finish line. I want to work on this part of my distance training and feel that this would be a good event for me at this point of training.
I am pleased with the results so far and pleased that I am staying healthy. I have been able to avoid getting sick so far and have been able to manage the stress really well. I have another build this week and I am excited to see how it goes. Week 7 is in the bank and off I go into week 8. 1:40 run today on a light dusting of snow outside in Cherry Creek Res on Presidents Day 2012.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Week 6 Ironman Training recap

I still have a bit of Hawaii on the brain. Jumping at 7 pools in Hana with the Cleveland gang.

This week back at training was the first solid week I had at home in the past 3 weeks. I was able to jump back into family, work and yes a good solid week of training. The time seems to be rolling by fast and as we talk about IM CDA it use to seem very far away and now it is close enough that I can see it.
I was nursing a little cold that came back with me from my travels and so I was sleeping more and trying to eat really well. The week’s workouts went really well. Putting the gym in the basement has allowed me to hit each workout for the required time needed with little pain. Even though I have a 24hr gym 2 miles from my home it takes me prep and travel time of nearly 45-1 hour every time I need to get a workout done. I can change and be in the basement in 30 seconds and the kids still have Mom or Dad home and accessible.
I am swimming more than I ever have and it feels good to be in the water so much. This week I finished 11,000 yards between 3 workouts. I was on the trainer for some power bike efforts and then had to do two longer run workouts. I had a 5x1km hill effort at 4% incline. I was not sure what that translated to miles so I did ¾ a mile and by the end of the workout I was toast. I feel really good about the strength phase that I am in as I continue to build my base. I came out of my major travel and vacation feeling good and pleased with the results. I am not sure after 6 weeks with all that I am doing I could be in a better spot. Anne and the kids seem happy, work is going OK and I am pleased with the training efforts.
Simply put…..Positive week 6!
Love you Anne

Monday, February 6, 2012

Recap for weeks 3, 4 & a little bit of 5

When you sit down and try to plan for 15 days in 3 city’s with no return to home base it really felt like I was packing everything and still missing items that I am sure I would need.
I really had 3 main goals for this trip.
1. Get the work done that I needed. The first week was spent in presentation from industries leaders at my home office in Valencia. The second was spent focused on my BFF in Maui and the last part was at my customer’s annual conference.
2. I needed to make really good decisions on eating, sleeping and workouts. This two week block had training last on a short list.
3. I needed to come home not totally trashed and sick where I would then need to take an additional 10 days off to get better.
Right now the tides seem to be on the very stressful side of work. Budgets, goals and changes to make the goals are the main focus of the Deluxe right now and this is taking a huge toll on me. Anne was able to come a few days early and see that I really am going to work and I do have an office with co-workers.
We quickly jumped on a plane to meet our Ohio friends and spend a few days on Maui. We packed about 10 days worth of activities into 5 days. We saw the sunrise from atop a crater at 10,000 feet and then rode bikes down to breakfast. We owned the road to Hana with over 600 180degree turns and several hundred 1 way bridges. We stopped and hiked into every waterfall we could find and swam around. We went whale watching, sea kayaking and snorkeled with the turtles from turtle bay. We took surf lessons and ate fish that was caught that morning. Maui was spectacular, the 4 other couples that we were with are incredible people and to spend one on one time with Anne was priceless. We even were able to go running together several mornings together. I swam in the ocean when the wind was high and felt good about getting into a grove as I went from beach to beach. I swam over a reef that was fun to focus on and made swimming very easy. Maui is a splendid place and I look forward to returning there with my entire family next time.
The Miche Conference in Salt Lake City was my last stop so we took a red eye to stay in Maui as long as possible and as we landed in San Francisco at 4am I kissed Anne and we parted ways. She went home and I went to Salt Lake City. I spent the next 10 hours working in the Conference store helping during the open hours and restocking when it closed. I was very happy to let me head hit the pillow that night. I worked the next few days like that and was pretty tired when I made it to the airport to return home. Anne had to manage a huge storm that dropped over a foot of snow while I was gone. I returned to a winter wonder land tired, sick of eating out and just a little sick. I think that I did really well on my main three goals and look forward to being home for a few weeks.

Love you Anne,


Monday, January 16, 2012

Week 2 IronMan training recap

Week 2 IM Training recap
This was a build week and so I wanted to try to focus and get everything out of it that I could. I started working on the basement exercise room and was able to get a treadmill to use thanks to Peter Atwater. We set our bikes up as well as weights. It will be interesting to see if we use the room as much as Anne and I think we will. Working from home this week it was pretty easy to get all the workouts done during the week. The workouts seemed really hard this week but I was able to surprise myself when it was time to get going because I could and I did. The swim on Tuesday night was disappointing and I will try to learn from it so the next time I will do better. I hate when I miss judge and run short of the finish line. The strength day really took it out of me and ended up producing soreness for a several days. I did 3 workouts this week in the basement and felt good about being able to get them all done. It takes away the “It does not fit mentality” that I get sometimes when my days are busy. This weekend was the Walton’s winter 48 hours of fun at the YMCA of the Rockies. We rented a cabin and had 28 people come and stay Friday-Monday. We did not ski since the kids just wanted to hang with cousins and do the activities that were onsite. Saturday we went sledding for 2 hours, Ice skating for 1 hour and then swimming for 3 hours. I woke up early and went to the swimming pool and did one of the swim workouts that you asked me to do. On Sunday I had a super fun adventure running on the snow shoe trails that were hard packed so I was able to run with my Yak trax's. I ended up going over the requested workout time and felt great with the event. I am proud that I was able to get these workouts done since in the past I would not do any real training while with the family. The snow sledding, swimming and ice skating had to count for something because the next day I was totally sore!
My attitude this week was pretty positive and I look back at the week and was proud of what I was able to get done. It looks like the best thing that I did this week was planning. Family, work, training, vacation was all done and nothing was really pushed out.
Happy Anne, happy Tyler, happy family.

5 Months, 7 days, 16H:55M:31S until IMCDA

Sunday, January 8, 2012

IM training week 1 recap.

I was hoping to jump out of the gate strong this year and take what I learned from the marathon and have it influence me for the first few months of IM training. I know that I need to build a base that will allow me to be active the entire IM race and hitting more workouts and doing better to regulate my HR is another focus.

On my ride last week I had 30BPM swings while riding on a "Easy" ride and kept popping into z4 so I took the second half easier and tried to ride smooth and balanced. I did not get to my Tuesday workout because of such a big travel day and I let it go quicker than normal. I hit the other workouts this week and felt good with the steady effort. On a treadmill I can regulate a low HR better than outside and so I took comfort in having 2 workouts done this way.

I was up early each day this week while traveling and felt good because I was able to get everything done that I needed to. I liked the swim outdoors in Valencia and feel that it will be a treat while I am in California.

Skiing was good and it looks like I am getting some value out of the day. I enjoyed the swim workout today and as I write this recap my arms are starting to become sore and tell me that my efforts to pull better took a toll on me today as well as the 20x50's on the minute.

The run this afternoon I tried 6 times to jog, waddle, bounce or anything but fast walk and after 6 times jumping well over 140 I gave in and walked at a moderate pace and stayed in the 130's for the hour and 10 minutes that I was out. I averaged 15minute miles today and felt good about giving in and getting the base work done.

The next two months theme will be Faith. Faith to be willing to come outside of my norm and get it done. Faith to slow down and walk if I have to, get up when I don't want to and get a workout in that I usually would not. Faith to know that base work at 130BPM for the next bit of time will bring a smile to my face while I am running (maybe very slowly) but running after 18 miles on the run course in CDA.

Getting my long day in the past few weeks was also something that is working out well thanks to Anne giving me this time to train and chase my goal. It is a team effort and being able to focus on getting my long day done and not being worried about the family is a very kind act. Thanks Anne!

The next few months I will have faith.