Monday, January 26, 2009


Easy spin on the trainer for an hour while watching most of Max Payne. That is a terrible, terrible movie. Some of the visual effects are pretty cool but the script is just horrible. Mark Wahlberg is a pretty decent actor so I'm betting that it wasn't necessarily his problem. Mila Kunis, while hot, is not believable as a bad-ass female assassin. That was definitely a stretch.

Also got in a 10 mile run, the first 7 of which felt quite easy and nice. The last 3 were not as great. Nuff said. I cannot make myself swim, it's impossible.

Sunday, January 25, 2009


Met up with a big group for a 60ish mile ride at 8am this morning. It was hard to make myself get up as I knew it was going to be pretty cold, but I managed to get up and make myself some coffee and oatmeal.

When I got to the start I switched over one of my water bottle cages from the road bike onto the new bike but unfortunately - although I didn't realize it at the time - forgot to actually put a water bottle in the cage. Smart of me.

The ride itself was pretty good; there were a couple of stretches where we were really hammering out a hard pace and I felt as though I was right at threshold (and at times above it maybe? I'm not exactly sure what my actual threshold is so it was just RPE and HR) and that ended up really tiring out my legs by the end of the ride. I'm good for 3-4 hours on the bike right now as long as I stay completely aerobic; my legs aren't used to pushing a hard pace just yet.

I was extremely hungry at the end of the ride (luckily, not thirsty as someone lent me a bottle for the ride once I discovered my cage was empty...) so I didn't run. Got home and took a nap from 2pm to 6pm...GLORIOUS

Saturday, January 24, 2009


We got out of work pretty early so I managed to get to the gym today with tons of time to spare before they close (at 7pm), which doesn't happen all that often. I wasn't sure whether I would end up doing a bike/run/swim or just a bike/run but I decided I'd just see how it went once I got there...

Hopped on one of the spin bikes for a super easy 30 minute spin with 3 isolated leg drills (right leg only this time, 60 rotations per set) to try and start the long process of getting my right leg all caught up to my left. I'm not really sure why my left leg is so much stronger than my right, but the differences are fairly obvious. I always jump off my left foot. I can leg press a good deal more weight with the left. It usually ends up having a smoother shave. Ok well, that last one was a joke but still, the question remains.

I then walked 50 feet to get on the treadmill and got the last one available (whew) and jumped on to start the run. I wanted to get in something with a little friskiness to see how my legs would feel after an easy ride and with a lot of hours in them (for the week). So I ended up doing a 2x7 minute fartlek at 6 min/mile pace. The leg speed felt very comfortable. My legs were just a little sore but they always feel way more sore on the treadmill for some reason. I did the run at a 1% grade to try to simulate as best as possible running outdoors.

Friday, January 23, 2009


Finally managed to get back home from work at a decent time (4pm) and hit the road in the sunny 60 degree weather for my first real ride on the new bike. It is so slick. The carbon frame just makes everything so much smoother than my Klein. The dampening mutes every single bump and it translates force into speed so, so well. There is almost no bottom bracket flex even if I put some serious power down on the pedals. I got in an hour and a half outside before it got dark (30 miles) then came back home and got on the trainer for another hour to give myself 50 total for the day in 2:30. I also did 5 sets of isolated leg drills (unclip one foot and spin using one leg): 2 sets (with each leg) of 30 rotations, 2 x 45 rotations, and 1 x 60 rotations. I was contemplating a run after but I was literally starving at about 2:15 so I decided to just call it quits. I actually just consumed an entire box of mac and cheese and I'm contemplating eating a lot more.

Estimated caloric intake for the day:

Bowl of granola w/ 2% milk: 350 kcal

footlong subway sub + chips + iced tea: ~1250

Pre Dinner (before ride and during ride):
snickers + 2x chewy bar : ~450

Mac and Cheese: ~1250

3300 calories today (that's really not enough I don't think). My metabolism has been going like it was on speed since training camp. The biking has really kicked it up several notches. The long, low HR training is great for burning fat. Yippee.


Thursday night run: 3.72 mile warm up lap then a 'go' lap. Managed to hit 21:30 on the 'go' lap which was just under 5:45 pace on a pretty tough course. The fastest time I've heard of on it (among the 'group') is held at just under 21. With this becoming a regular tempo run I'm hoping at some point in the next 2 months I can break that. The first mile felt pretty easy and the second one I began to feel like I was touching threshold on the inclines. Mile 2 is almost 75% uphill so that one always feels the worst to me. Ran with Kevin most of the way; he'd roll by me on the descents and I'd catch back up on the inclines. The last 1/4 mile is downhill so he finished ~5 seconds in front of me. I actually broke out the flats for this one; it was the first time I've worn them since Patriots.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009


Got in a great ride on the trainer today. 2 hours, which was longer than any other trainer ride I've ever done by 90 minutes; pretty spectacular, I'd say. Mixed it up a little bit into a 'fartlek' style ride in which I upped the effort a good bit (basically shifted into my big ring) when certain songs came up on my playlist. So I got in 8 or 9 good efforts at around 150 hr that were anywhere from 3-5+ minutes long.

Also got in a promising swim this evening at the Y. Wanted to do an arm intensive workout since I had gotten in 2 hours on the trainer and I definitely managed to tire myself out after only 35 minutes in the pool. I'd much rather have a short swim be due to fatigue than apathy, which is what's been happening recently. Did a bunch of pull sets and my arms were pretty much shot by the end. Yay

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


Got in several short workouts at the gym today. Since it snowed and Charlotte panics about snow we got the day off, which was pretty sweet. Swam for 25 minutes and got really bored (as usual) then did some leg weights for a while before getting on a spin bike for 30 minutes.

Later this evening I also got in a pretty hard track workout. Copied from my log:

Jumped in with Scott and Lisska for their 7x1000 @ 5:45 pace workout.

The first 4 felt pretty easy, the 5th was hard, and the 6th was pretty much the last straw. I think I could certainly have completed a 7th, but it wasn't really necessary and it would have just ended up hurting more. Breathing felt pretty fine throughout the workout; I never felt as though I was maxing out in that respect. Mostly kept it pretty controlled. Right quad above knee was sore afterward.

81.5 + 86.1 + 42.2 = 3:29.8
88.3 + 85.3 + 41.3 = 3:34.9
85.2 + 85.1 + 42.4 = 3:32.7
85.4 + 85.0 + 42.0 = 3:32.4
85.8 + 85.4 + 42.6 = 3:33.8
88.2 + 86.4 + 43.0 = 3:37.6

Monday, January 19, 2009


Today I set 3 alarms with the goal being to get up and go ride my mountain bike before meeting up to run at 10am (both at Francis Beatty park). I set my A-goal alarm at 7am, my B-goal at 7:45am, and my last resort alarm at 8:30am, which I knew would be the latest I could get up in a leisurely fashion and still make it to the run on time (with no mountain biking beforehand, of course). I didn't fall asleep until 2 last night so waking up at 7 was a struggle. I managed to get myself out of bed and arrived at the park to start riding around 8:30. I got in 1:15 on the trails today and that felt quite nice. It had been a long, long time since my last mountain bike ride so it was a pleasant shift (pun intended, obviously) to 'blast' around some trails.

After the ride I got in a transition run of 5.75 miles or so. The run felt pretty easy as the ride didn't fatigue me at all. All the riding last week got me used to spending 3+ hours on the bike so an hour almost seems inconsequential. That's a very nice feeling...

The trails themselves are pretty nice. They're not very technical but they are fun. Pretty much the opposite of Renaissance. Those are the only two places I've actually done some riding here in Charlotte. I tried going to the White Water Center at the beginning of last year but it had recently rained so the trails were in awful condition, forcing me to quit almost before I had started. Some day I'll make a real effort to ride there. Maybe this weekend, who knows (although I doubt it, because...)

I got my Planet X back from Bike Sport today and it's all built, fitted, and ready to ride. Unfortunately, the weather this week isn't all that pleasant so it may be a while before I actually get to put the hammer down on some roads. Also got a sick new pair of sunglasses - the kind that Macca wears - so I'm excited to see how those function as well. All in all, a good day. Lots of money out of the pocket though, sadly. It happens.

Saturday, January 17, 2009


I set my alarm clock for 7am in anticipation of meeting up at Caribou Coffee at 8am to leave for a trail run this morning. Well, that 7am alarm woke me up and I decided to go back to sleep and forgo the run and instead just sleep more. My body didn't want me to be lazy though, as I then woke up at 7:45 and decided to get my butt on the move down to Kings Mountain Park. I had an 'oatmeal on the go' bar for breakfast, which is only ~200 calories, so I was little worried that the 2 hour trail run might prove very hard due to a lack of energy. Luckily, that was not the case.

We made it through ~15 miles in just over 2 hours and I felt pretty good almost the whole time. Unfortunately, after I stopped I realized how many sore muscles and joints I had. I rolled my ankles 10+ times so they were sore. My quads and calves were sore from all the climbing. My hamstrings were a little sore from jumping over creeks. My lower back was sore from all the times I almost fell but managed to catch myself. My knees were a little sore because the trail was so hard due to its frozen-ness.

Other than that though, it felt great. My breathing was fine the whole time and I never felt especially labored.

Friday, January 16, 2009


Well, I'm not going to try and catch up at this point, but suffice it to say that the last week has been full of bike riding. We rode all over the place in Harrisonburg and, since Monday, Fort Valley (VA). I feel so much stronger now on the bike. My body seems to respond pretty quickly to 'crash' phases of biking and it was no different this time. While I still need a lot of work, I think my bike leg will become a strength as opposed to a weakness.

In the coming weeks I'll hopefully start swimming in earnest again, while keeping up with the cycling and staying fairly low on the running mileage. We shall see how that works out...

Saturday, January 10, 2009


The forecast called for rain today and the weather did not disappoint. Luckily it held off until we got to Massanutten - the main climb of the day - and most of the way up the climb. Despite only being 1.8 miles, the climb still kicks your butt. It's all on gravel road (and not good, hard packed gravel either...) and kicks up to 11% grade in places. It's pretty hard, to say the least. On the way back we all got completely soaked through, which isn't that awesome when it's <40 degrees outside. Definitely glad to be finished with today's ride, to say the least. Glad to have done it, however (although you can almost always say that once its over...)

Just under 3 hours today.


Today was Reddish Knob day. No matter what, Reddish Knob always holds a certain 'prestige' among the climbs we do in Harrisonburg (or anywhere for that matter, really) because it combines the two things that make climbing the hardest: grade and length. Reddish Knob has a lot of both.

The total climb is between 11-12 miles, the first 3-4 of which are a false flat at a fairly easy grade that nonetheless saps your strength in preparation for the true beginning of the mountain. You then go about another mile or two and get to 'the dam,' where the climb really begins in earnest. The rest of the way it averages about 6-8% with a couple of sections kicking it up a notch. For me, it meant 39x25 the entire way. We took off some of our gear before making our way up, knowing that it would get hot during the 45 minute steep section of the climb. With about 3 miles to go it started getting really cold, and snow began to appear on the road in spots. Well, the snow had already been there obviously, but we were just getting to it. With 2 to go the road was almost constantly covered in snow. It would certainly be a sketchy descent. Once we got to the top we tried to take a picture but it was so cold and the camera wasn't being cooperative that we just decided to head on down. The descent itself took about 30-35 minutes because we had to go so slow for the first two miles because of the snow. All in all, an epic climb. Reddish always seems to be that way.

Got in a little over 50 miles today in 3:30.

Cory trying to take a picture near the beginning.
Trying not to focus on how much further it is...
Starting to see some snow
A view down into the valley

Thursday, January 8, 2009


Went out for a bike ride and hit up Mole Hill again on the way to Hopkins Gap, where we went up the back side - about 3 miles of false flat and then 1/2 mile or so of steeper grade - and descended the front side. Cory and Joe climbed the front side 4 times, a feat I could sadly only repeat 3 times. Towards the end of the ride my legs definitely felt the climbing, something I really haven't done since spring of senior year. The last time I rode mountains had to be in training camp of that same year, which was on the same mountains we are riding now. The ride totaled just under 3 hours, which felt crazy long considering the lack of true time I've spent in the saddle. All of this is of course geared towards completing this course in around (but preferably under) 2 hours and 30 minutes (the elevation profile is pretty conducive to this goal thankfully...)


Got to Harrisonburg and it was freezing and rainy so we decided to just head out for a run up Mole Hille, which is about a 1 mile climb at maybe 5% average grade. Got in just over 8 miles in under an hour.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009


Went to the Y for an easy swim just to get reacquainted with the water after my extended absence (3+ weeks, ouch). Did 500 continuous yards freestyle plus some other drills to get up to 1000 yards. 500 is the longest continuous swim I've done since changing my stroke and I didn't feel tired at all; I stopped because I became 'panicky' (best way to describe it for lack of better words that I can come up with) about being in the water. My head kept telling me to stop and get out...very strange. I'm hoping it was the big break in between swims plus the fact that it was the longest I've gone without stopping since...early November maybe?

Also got in a workout this evening at the track. (copied from my log so I don't have to rewrite all the times and shiz)

Mile repeats at AG track. Warmed up 3 by myself then 1.5 with Jocelyn, Adam, and Chris. Felt some tightness in a couple of places but I felt fine by the end of the warmup. Adam and Chris were doing 800s, Jocelyn was doing a ladder so consequently we couldn't really hop in with each other much.

Wanted to start at 6:00 pace and work my way down per repeat. There was practically no light at the track and the light on my watch sucks so this was done mostly by feel with only a couple of pace checks. I definitely had a 5th in me but I decided there was no real point. I'd say on a scale of 1-10 effort wise, I'd put this at a 7. Wasn't too taxing, but it was a god workout. Definitely the best mile repeat workout I've done, although it wasn't as fast as the others.

2 minute rest in between, 1 mile cooldown.

(90.4, 91.2, 87.5, 88.7) - 5:57.8
(89.0, 89.3, 88.7, 87.7) - 5:54.7
(86.0, 85.9, 86.2, 86.4) - 5:44.5
(84.8, 86.7, 85.5, 83.7) - 5:40.7

Monday, January 5, 2009


Ran an easy 6 with a bunch of people. Although it really didn't feel that easy. It was still conversation pace, so I guess that makes it ok. My running has been so inconsistent these past 2 weeks that I think it ends up hurting my body's ability to get into any sort of rhythm. Of course, I'm likely over analyzing and my body doesn't give a crap about how many days a week I run but who knows...maybe I'm right.

Picked up my new bike frame today and it is so sweet looking. I'm really, really excited to get it put together when I get back from camp in 2 weeks. It's going to end up costing more money than I really planned to spend on a 'new' bike but I think it'll be worth it because this is going to be a very nice bike. The only thing that I'll look to improve on it in the coming year or two is race wheels, most likely. I kinda wish I still had those Zipp 303's and that I didn't sell them for staggeringly less than what they were worth 3 years ago. I could probably sell those right now for more than I did then if I was smart about it. Oh well. Hindsight is 20/20.

So the goal is to turn this:
into this:
(except without the sweet wheels, although my crankset is better than this one, plus it's black carbon to match the rest of the bike)

Obviously, if you know me, I get pretty excited about bikes and this one is no exception.


Wow, first time I've had to write "2009" was today. Very crazy, except not really because it happens every year. Ran to Audubon Park with the goal to do 1 lap steady state (6:20-6:30 pace), 1 lap easy, 1 lap steady state, and 1 last lap easy. My first lap of the 1.8 mile course was a bit fast in 11:05 so I slowed it down a little bit for the second hard lap and came in at 11:15. Both were a bit fast, but those paces felt pretty manageable. I was still aerobic for both, but my breathing rate was fairly high and I could tell that if I went a little faster it would start feeling much harder very quickly.


Just got in a short run today to loosen up from yesterday before leaving to spend New Year's at our beach house. Didn't feel super stellar, but yesterday's workout was pretty tough and I didn't expect to.