Thursday, February 12, 2009


Feb 2009
For the last few months I have been hiding in a foxhole. After Ironman, I was physically and emotionally tired so I refrained from structured training until January. It was a good move. The excitement and energy returned and I am happy to be back swimming, biking, and running. A few things are different for 2009.

1. I accepted an invitation to race for Team Gear-Grinder ( I did so for a couple of reasons. The first was to restimulate the novelty of training. IM training can be boring and doing it with others can help me get out there. Riding with TriWisconsin club and the Gear-Grinder team will help keep me accountable to hitting my volume and intensity goals (20+ hrs/wk May-Aug; 2 Hard rides/wk). Second, they offer a nice clothing line with a variety of shirts that I can wear for work. For the last few years, I wore my collectin of IM Wisconsin polo shirts. It's time to update my work shirts. Once I get them logo'ized with Gear-Grinder, my office logo, and PX I'll start sporting them.

2. I changed my Planet X bike frame size from Large to Medium. Over the last year, I felt slightly uncomfortable on long training rides. It seemed that the top-tube length was a wee bit long, something like 2 cm too long. Add in what I saw in race pictures with my body position stretched out, I sold my PX frameset and bought a new, smaller PX frameset. It was the right move. Now I feel much better. To digress with a side story, I did a 1 hr indoor Time Trial race at the end of January. It was a disappointing race. My power was 251 watts for the hour despite a hr ave of 171. But a friend pointed out that my seat position looked wrong. Turns out, I inadvertently installed my seat slack (~74 degrees) instead of steep (~78 degrees) when building up the new bike. Hence, during the TT race the seat felt too high and I was forced to ride the seat's nose at the same time slipping off of it. A week later when I looked at it at my friend's suggestion, I saw my mistake and corrected it. Ah, much better.

3. My training has evolved again for 2009. Much of my training last year was focused on achieving base. I abstained from mountain bike racing and the fast TriWisconsin Lannon rides to promote "going long." I feel it was a good strategy for a first IM. This year I am building up volume slower from January to Spring, and then adding in lots of speed work with the Merton Ride on Tuesdays and the Drop the Doc ride on Saturdays. Hammering it with the roadies should be fun and prove valuable to increasing my bike speed. As for swimming and running, I'm content. My genetics and background keep me at the sub 55 min IM swim and the sub 3:30 IM marathon. I'll keep the status quo for this year.

4. Adrienne is doing her first Ironman this year. I am excited and nervous about her journey as any spouse might be. Inherently, she is a better athlete than I, and suspect she will do better than me. I distinctly remember the days when she used to show me up when running and swimming together in college. Today and now, she relies upon me as her confidant and coach, to get her to the finish line. I hope things go well. They have so far.

The racing schedule is simple this year. Ironman Louisville in August is the A race. Secondary races include American Triple T (with teammate Scott Bowe again) and High Cliff Triathlon half ironman. Tertiary races might include J-Hawk Early Bird, LaCrosse YMCA Sprint Tri, Steven's Point YMCA Sprint Tri, and late season Devil's Challenge Sprint Tri.

See You at the Races.