Monday, July 7, 2008

Homecoming...and it starts to heat up.

Been awhile but that's because my June has been pretty full. Hali graduated at the end of May and she's been non stop in and out, one party after the other, and then she had her own party we had to coordinate. I missed the actual event since I had plans with my Dad to go to the drag races in Joliet along with Emily and her boyfriend Tim. That would be the first time for both of them and it was pretty cool to see them have a good time. I also headed out to Coeur d'Alene to watch some friends do IM CDA and meet some other friends to do some hard core training on the course which made me an Ironman. Hali also had a visit to EIU where we got her all signed up for classes, toured the campus, and did some reminiscing from when I attended back in the...80s. The month ended with a big 4th of July weekend that was absolutely gorgeous weather.

I've been toning down on the running recently to try and take care of my sports hernia. Went to the surgeon and he convinced me I only had tendonitis in the area where the core muscles attach to the pubic bone. He sent me to the "pain doctor" who specializes in targeting the exact area the pain is coming from and then treating it specifically. Bad thing is, this guy pretty much specialized in back injuries (got that from all the people in the waiting room) and initially thought my pain was from the last sports hernia operation I had over 2 yrs ago. He didn't even know what a sports hernia was. I tried to explain the amount of training I do, what I do, how I do it, when I feel the pain, etc and he just stared at me with a blank look on his face.....nice. He felt around in my groin area and convinced me I had a "defect" not tendonitis since it would hurt if he pushed down there. OK fine, what now? Cat Scan. Great. I scheduled one but bailed on it since it was already halfway through June (I'm not getting surgery now), it was feeling better, and plus, it would probably cost an arm and a leg for a Cat Scan even with insurance. I didn't have the time for them to analyze it and figure it out. So I guess I'll just live with it until after the big show. : (

Our club's Tri Shark race was June 7th and it was turned into a Duathlon because of inclement weather. 1/3 of the people ended up leaving. What a bummer. It rained cats and dogs and I guess there was possibility for lightning so the safe thing to do was eliminate the swim. That would be my first duathlon and let me tell you, it was a little harder than I expected. I put myself in the "elite" wave (thanks Keith) which wouldn't have been so embarrassing with a water start but I can't run like those young studs and I was left in the dust. Third from last into T1. Heart rate at max and confused that my shoes where on as I got to my bike. I'm used to putting on my sunglasses and helmet then taking off. Had a good ride and then another decent run. Not the same as good 'ol Tri-Shark but we all made the best of it.
9:43/31:56/10:19 53:38 total for a 2mi/13mi/2mi Du. 8th in the elite wave and 3rd in my age group if I would have started that way.

My trip out to CDA was the perfect vacation. I hadn't really had one since going to work for Cat two years ago. This was the first year for me to get actual vacation days. That along with a free ticket from frequent flyer miles and I was there. Rossi flew out to Boise and stayed with Drew for a day and then they both drove up and picked me up at the Spokane airport before heading to CDA. We all stayed in K-dogs hotel room and it turned into another "guys" trip. Friday morning we all headed down to the swim course and I got my first real open water swim in for the year. Water was a brisk 55 degrees F. A lot of people were wearing wetsuit hats and booties. After a 1.2mi swim we all jumped on the bikes to check out the course. It was a different course from when I did the race back in 2005. I thought it was a bit harder but probably the same amount of climbing as IM Moo. Hills just seemed to be steeper, but then the down hills were just as steep and there was a long flat section between the two loops. For Friday we just did one loop and threw in a 3mi run for good measure. Great day of training.

On Saturday we skipped the swim so we could ride the whole course and save some time for rest and relaxation. We had to watch the race on Sunday you know. We ended up getting around 95 miles and it would be my longest (and most challenging) ride of the year. Drew showed us how well he has been riding thus far in the season. Seems like there are real hills out west. See you in Kona next year Drewbie. ; )

Sunday came early since we stayed out a bit late Sat night enjoying the nightlife. Nothing over the top just some good fun. Met some locals and walked around the downtown area. I really give it to Keith for putting up with us in that tiny hotel room. He has a big race and we cram all our shit into it, go swimming, biking, running without him, and we go out partying making noise as we come in late at night (he said he didn't even hear us). You're awesome K-dog, thanks for being you!!

We put together a cooler of food and drinks for the day and mapped out our course to watch the race and then headed down to drop Keith off and watch the swim start. The start of an Ironman race is such a cool experience. What a wide range of people you can watch. From the experienced to the novice. It got my juices flowing for my big day in Oct. K-dog ended up getting a PR with an 11:27. Mike D PR'd with a 10:45, and even Tricia PR'd. Guess the bike course wasn't that hard. I'm just not where I need to be or want to be, I suppose. It brought back to reality that its a really long open water (need to work on that), and you have to be prepared to run a strong marathon (need to work on that).

I made an inspirational sign for K-dog to see during the race and it ended up being the best sign of the day (in 90% of the people's opinion). He certainly lived up to it...

To finish out the month, well really to start another month (can you really believe July is already here!) I did the Lakeside Triathlon in Decatur which I did last year and had a great time so why not do it again. I've met some great people in Decatur since working for Cat so it was almost like a hometown feel. Kyle May and his band of Spin City Cycle teamates were out in force. He ended up breaking his saddle coming out of T1 which ended his day. I had no expectations going into this race other than to have fun and to stay in front of Rossi!! I ended up doing both. Brian had a great race even though he had to ride his road bike after an unfortunate breakdown with his new BMC Time Machine. Can't imagine what he would have done with it. He spanked his new age group. Oh, did I mention it was the over the hill age group (30-34)? I had clear water throughout the swim, pounded out a good bike ride and took it too easy on the run. I let a guy in my age group blow by me at about mile 2.5 and just couldn't hold on. Ended up 2nd in my age group, 7th overall. 21:24/47:15/32:26 and 1:42 total for a .75mi/19mi/4.5mi tri.

Well, if all goes well, we'll have some hot weather to train in for July and August. I'm gonna amp up my bike mileage and try to put some focus in on the swim to get some better endurance. Not a whole lot of running volume or core work to try and save my hernia as best I can. Evergreen Tri is in two weeks and then the Miles of Smiles 100 which will be another "race" to see who can ride it the fastest. After that, I'm focusing in on the Pigman 1/2 Ironman and hope its hotter than H. E. double hockey sticks. Hope to check in before that.

later, cd

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