Thursday, December 15, 2005

My Shoulder and the Significance of "32"

This is a picture of us "Spinning" (that is biking in place) at Paradise Park.

I went swimming the next day after this picture was taken. I swam almost 2 miles. Didn't really think much of it until I started to feel a pain just to the right of my left shoulder blade. It didn't stop me from moving, but it did make me cringe everytime I put on my jacket.

I got a massage tonight, and the massage therapist was able to find the muscle knot right away. It was the area on my back that was the most tense. My shoulder is still sore, but it feels much much better!

I am 32 years old. When I was 14, I wore size 32 pants. I wore the same size pants all the way through my senior year in college (1994). That would be the last time I wore size 32 pants.

Now, 11 years later, and about 45 lb lighter, it is time to start wearing size 32. Yesterday I bought my first pair of size 32 pants in 11 years! How cool is that! Posted by Picasa

Monday, December 12, 2005

Our Honorees... the real heros

These are the honorees of the 2006 IronTeam. They are comprised of survivors as well as patients of Leukemia, Lymphoma, and other blood cancers.

The taller lady (just above the heart in the sign) is actually going to do the IronMan. The little girl at the bottom is only 10-years old... she is still undergoing Leukemia treatment. Posted by Picasa

Yet another Practice Tri

We did another practice tri this weekend... this time it was at Paradise Cove in Tiburon. It concerned me that we were swimming in a place called, "Tiburon" (which is Spanish for "Shark").

We swam about 1000 yards in the bay (about 55 degrees). Then we spun on our bikes (attached to trainers) for about 45 minutes. Then we followed it up with a 30 minute run.

The above picture is actually from the practice triathlon the previous week at Treasure Island... but you get the idea.

I'm feeling much better about the swim. Yeah, it's cold. And yeah, my face gets numb... but the comfort level in terms of ability is way up from last year. I also think I'm getting faster!

Lake Placid... LOOK OUT!

This is a picture of me getting out of the water. See... I'm still alive

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Practice Sprint Tri at Treasure Island


On Sunday Dec. 4, 2006, the IronTeam did a practice sprint tri at Treasure Island in San Francisco. It consisted of a 950 yd swim, 12 mile bike, and a 3 mile run.

The water was cold! My face was numb! I couldn't wait to get out of the water. I think they said it was about 55 deg. F.

The rest of the day was pleasant. I was able to finish in just under 2 hours.

See folks! This is what I go through! Please be sure to donate. Posted by Picasa

Friday, December 02, 2005

My Son Jesse

This is my son, Jesse, at age 1. He looks like a future ironman (or hockey player). Just don't take his bear!  Posted by Picasa

Run to CostCo

I had a cool little workout yesterday. Here's the low down... down low.

We had ordered a bunch of picture greeting cards online at CostCo. Vickee asked me where I wanted to pick them up, so I told her at the South San Francisco CostCo.

The South San Francisco CostCo is on El Camino across the street from the BART station. I thought I could run from work to CostCo and get in a good workout. It's only 4.5 miles away.

So it's raining. I'm going over a few really good steep hills. I'm looking strong. I see CostCo in the distance. I'm a stud!

Run into CostCo. Give them my name.

What do you mean you don't have my order?!?!?!?

No I didn't know that there are two CostCos in the South San Francisco.

So my order was at the CostCo on So. Airport Blvd. Which happened to be 2 miles closer to me than the CostCo that I ran to.

The run was fun though. I actually wasn't mad. It was funny. And I'm a stud!

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

and I'm back!

Shadow Cliffs. Looking cool. Ready to get cold!

I haven't wrote much here in the past two weeks. There has been a lot of ups, a lot of downs, a lot of what-have-yous.

Vickee's grandmother has been in and out of the hospital for various ailments ranging from low blood sodium to a broken ankle. We hope that she'll come home this weekend. She will miss Thanksgiving.

We have some relatives that just came over from the Philippines. They are adjusting well, though they said that I drove to fast from the airport... I was obeying the speed limit.

As for my training, I'll get you caught up.

We did an open water swim (about 1 mile) at Shadow Cliffs in Pleasanton. It was chilly, but not the coldest I have ever encountered. There was the constant fear of "Swimmer's Itch" (as posted on flyers at the park). Apparently there are these snails whose larvae are microscopic. They tend to attach and burrow into your skin. They are harmless, but what a thought, eh? To avoid it... other than not swimming there... is to towel off well after rinsing yourself with copius amounts of water.

I did a track workout recently where we did 16 minutes at 10K pace with a 20 second pick-up at sprint pace followed by a 2 minute cool down. We did that 3 times. The goal for the season is to have a foot fall turnover of 90 or better (that is one foot hitting the ground 90 times per minute, or 180 steps per minute). I was happy to hear from Coach Alex that he clocked me at around 85. I think I am pushing 6-7 miles per hour.

I also got videotaped swimming. The last time I was videotaped, my butt dragged through the water, I had no streamline... in short, I was slow. Fast forward 2 years and Coach Wayne said that I looked great. I do have the tendency to cross my arms, and my body roll is best when I breathe. So I will work on that.

I've raised $500 for the Leukemia Society. Make sure to donate if you get a chance. Anything you can contribute.

Well, that's it for now. I hope to be back on this blog thing regularly, so check back. Have a great holiday! GOBBLE GOBBLE!

Friday, November 04, 2005

Swim and furniture lifting program part II

My swim on Wednesday night went well. I stopped sinking. I've concentrated more on streamlining in the water, i.e. keeping my body as long as possible. What was happening was that I was rolling over onto my back while swimming. This imbalance was causing me to sink.

Tomorrow, I'm moving furniture to Sacramento for my wife's aunt. The moving crew is essentially me and Vickee, my wife. I'll get to flex those big ol' guns again.

By the way, this move was supposed to happen last Saturday, but good ol' U-haul messed up. I went to go pick up my truck in San Leandro. The guy that handles all truck rentals wasn't there. On top of that, he wasn't coming in until Monday! I had a reservation... I suspect they just lost another customer in me. Tomorrow I'm using Budget truck rentals.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Pull-up bars and the IKEA weight lifting program

I managed to get in a few quality workouts this week. I am trying to be consistent with my weight training as well. This brings me to my first item.

I have a pull-up bar upstairs in my house. Everytime (almost) I see it, I do 5 pull-ups. By biceps feel pretty good, and they look bigger! Well, there is less of me, so maybe it's an optical illusion.

In addition to the pull-ups, I've been doing push-ups, sit-ups, lunges, squats, abs, etc. But the best workout happened this past weekend.

IKEA was having a 15% off everything sale. We went on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. I lifted about 200 lb. of awkwardly shaped furniture. Now, I'm sore (and poor).

Lastly, I worked on my swimming last night. I think I was able to refine my technique such that my hips don't sink. And, the pool was empty because of Halloween. Cool!

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Sinking like a rock

This past Saturday we worked a bit on our bike trainers... that's where you put your bike on a stand (a trainer) and work on spin revolutions (cadence). It had been the first time that I was on a bike since Vineman 2004 (see for the Vineman story). Needless to say, I was pretty sore. I got a chance to see my butt in the mirror and noticed two bruises where my butt bones meet the bike seat.

Yes, I was talking about my butt, and sorry... you talk about things like this during endurance race training. Wait until I start talking about urine and the color that it should be!

Anyhow, getting back to the subject of this post. The coaches said that if you are a good marathoner, then you will run well. Same goes for the bike and the swim. When you start to combine them in training, then your next run might only be 5 miles, and you may get more tired than you normally feel.

Last night I had a swim workout. In recent weeks, I had been doing really well in the swim. Last night, my legs were sore, I felt like I was sinking, and I was having a hard time breathing. It felt like I didn't know how to swim... like I was drowning. My breathing sounded terrible too. I was weezing, as if I was having an asthma attack, without the attack (I probably took in too much water). I cut my workout short because I felt like dog poo.

Anyhow, I want to get back in the pool and work through this hurdle. I guess one thing I have to look forward to for my next swim is the post-swim massage! It'll be my first massage of the season.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Tired, fatigued, sore...

I did part of my swim workout yesterday with my Master's group. It wasn't a hard workout, but I found it to be quite difficult. My triceps still hurt (though they are better today). I cut my yardage to just 2000 yards instead of 3000 yards. I thought rest might benefit me more.

On the plus side, I weighed in at 177 lb. today. That's a total of 38 lb. loss since January 2004.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

My triceps hurt

The strength training from Sunday sure focused alot on triceps, and very little on biceps. Today, I can barely bend my arms. I have to consciously will my arms to bend. I look goofy when I have to contort my arms and neck just so that I can drink a cup of water.

The take home message, work opposing muscle groups at the same time to avoid looking goofy.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Hockey... until next year

Well, I played my last game of hockey for a while. I've been playing beginner coed rollerhockey on Fridays at the Bladium (Alameda, CA) for the past 3 months, and the season came to a close with a 2-1 loss in the playoffs. I went out in style by scoring our team's lone goal, but it just wasn't enough. It was a sweet wrister on a breakaway. I had another opportunity to tie it up on yet another breakaway, but I was hauled down in front of the net with 3 minutes to go.

I won't be playing simply because the rigors of IronMan training AND hockey will be a bit too much to handle.

Sunday was Iron University #2 with TNT. We covered dynamic run drills, weight training, injury prevention, and swimming. My triceps are killing me right now (must be from the diamond push-ups and the reverse bench tricep press). It hurts so good!

I followed it up with what I can only assume is an MSG induced coma (from a new Thai restaurant that I tried). My head hadn't hurt this bad since the last time I had MSG... which caused me to swear off of it.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

New Link to my Workout Log!!!

I added a link to my online workout log. Now you can see what I'm doing (as far as training goes that is).
  • See the log or click on the link at the right.

  • I did a run workout last night to see how far we could go in 10 minutes at 50% effort. I'm just over 8 min/mi. That's way better than I was last year which was 9.5 min/mi.

    Tuesday, October 11, 2005

    A few more thoughts and stats

    Something important to start the season is to know where I am starting from.

    • I am 32 years old... will be 33 years old when the race starts.
    • Currently I weigh 182 ± 3 lb and stand at 5'6". My ideal weight is about 165 lb. If you believe the charts, I should be 140lb. I'm pretty sure I would be dead at that weight.
    • Last time I checked, my resting heart rate was 43 beats/min.
    • My fastest marathon (26.2 mi... and yes all marathons are that distance) is 5:22.
    • I'm currently taking a master's swim course 2-3 days a week.

    Earlier this year, I was about 210 lb. Then I watched the film, "Super Size Me," where I guy ate nothing but McDonald's food for 30 days (highly recommended viewing). Since the film, I haven't eaten any fast food.

    In fact, during a 3 week period in February 2005, in which I cooked my own food (including more butter than is necessary), while not exercising, I dropped 10 lb. I then enhanced that with exercise and dropped an additional 20 lb. It wasn't low-carb or any stupid stuff like that. I just simply ate better food, lowered my intake, and increased my exercise. And for those of you thinking that's too hard, try parking really far away from the entrance to CostCo instead of waiting 10 minutes for that one spot that is about to open.

    Last thing... Obesity is on the rise in America and around the world. We should walk more.

    Sunday, October 09, 2005

    The Road to IronMan: the beginning

    Today was the official IronTeam kickoff with the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society's Team in Training (TNT). Unfortunately I couldn't be there because I was at home tending to some remodeling. My wife went for me to hand them some papers and pick up some papers...

    I'm pretty excited about the upcoming season. I've been quietly thinking about it since my DNF (Did Not Finish) at Full Vineman 2004 (the race report is at I don't plan on not finishing this time.

    The race I will be doing is IronMan USA (Lake Placid, NY) in July 2006. I've been thinking about it for a year. In that time I've lost about 35 lb., decreased my marathon time from 6:06 hours to 5:22 hours. I have also been taking a master's swim class. Haven't been biking much... the race number from Vineman are still on my bike. Is hockey a good replacement? I've been playing a lot of that.

    Sadly, I will have to give up playing hockey for the duration of the IronTeam season. Training 6 days a week and then a hockey game? I think I can do it, but then there wouldn't be any balance in my life. I guess I just have to settle for watching Sharks games. GO SHARKS!