Saturday, March 27, 2010

Tucson in the books - we leave Sunday.

Some of the bikes lined up in the court yard before we set out.

A room with a view....
Riding out to Mt Lemmon; straight ahead boys!

The world's worst wine ended our camp. I am particularly fond of the distributor Grateful Palate but frankly this stuff is piss, truly awful, but a good laugh all the same. A nice bottle of Coppola hides behind...

Bill stands a top Windy Point at Mile 14 of Mt. Lemmon on our last day.

Another great camp is in the books. 800+kms of really hard riding in the books; many sessions were on the rivet. Some high quality miles just in time for the season to start on Good Friday.

A great group to train with - ah, and drink with!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Made it!

Back in ACTION today!

Trough was a one day trough so all is well. 12km run this morning as 3km warm up, 20min 5km, 3km tempo, 1km warm down. We then headed out for a 75km team ride with lots of wind but all in control.

Tomorrow is our last day. It is decision time between Shootout (Tucson's local ride) or another go at Mt. Lemmon. At moment I am 100% undecided-:)

Catch up tomorrow night!

Ciao for now.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

and on day 7....I CRACK....BAD!

Day 7 of camp on this 'ol body catches a bug and I am in pain chamber mode. Gutted out a 3 hour ride (gutted appropriate term here). That was the day. Horrible night sleep, rough start to day, then 3 hours in saddle trying to hang on to the boys. Sometimes you pack it in and start a new tomorrow. I barely made it but hey, it sure beats working-:)!-:)

Here is a photo of Bill and John at the local CVSs enjoying some Red Bull. Red Bull didn't help me today let me just say that!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Earning it...

Success in August is built in March; we are hammering ourselves into oblivion here in Tucson. The 9 day training camp is a solid build of fitness and I am feeling really great about the progress up to this trip, and especially during this trip.

Here are some photos of some great bike riding we did today up Mt Lemmon. I have managed 1 swim and 2 runs on top of the cycling, anything tri related is strictly a bonus right now though. Today I did the Mt. Lemmon climb to Palisdais station, a 2o mile climb at 5 to 6% grade in 1:39:48 average 3.7W/KG. This was 3 minutes faster than 2009 so good sign! We added some miles out and back to the mountain and a 5K run after the ride so the day was really solid. We also had excellent efforts up Kitts Peak, a 12.5 mile climb with last 9 miles at 8% grade, in 1:02:40 average 4W/KG and of course the local Tucson "Shootout" ride last Saturday. My legs feel sore but good.

We are also really, really enjoying some of California's most honest offerings of Merlot. Very fine stuff for half the price Canada offers it at! YUMMIE!!

Thanks for reading! Stay tuned for more Tucson offerings-:)

Monday, March 15, 2010

What it Takes...

What it Takes is a title I stole from a movie about Peter Reid training for Hawaii. It ended up being his last race in Kona, he took 3rd. Peter is a legend, a Canadian, an ambassador of triathlon and I respect his track record of hard work and commitment. He is also a 3 time Kona winner; stud.

I stole the title because March is WHAT IT TAKES month. Without March my season would be all about catch up on fitness. Instead I am using the mantra, THIS IS WHAT IT TAKES TO RACE FAST IN AUGUST with every pool length, pedal stroke, and foot strike.

I just finished a 15 day block of really solid training. Finally my long runs are flowing, my swim is gaining momentum with 4km workouts again. My bike from a long miles perspective is taking a back seat to strength work; meaning, hard watts/long intervals and a lot of pain and sweat.

I leave for Tucson Friday to put the miles into the legs. I can't wait, it will top off a great month of training.

So honestly, what does it take?

Here is a picture of my man cave. I spent 4 hours in the cave Saturday between the bike and the treadmill after a 2km swim to start the day. Sunday was a 4km swim then a 23km run in wind gusts up to 50km/hr. What it Takes = commitment to the process 6 months ahead of your race day.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Vancouver Olympics

I can't say it any better than Steve Brunt, one of Canada's best sports journalists. Watch here:

An excellent quote from Ignatieff's column today in the Globe and Mail too:

"The Games leave Canada a much more confident and competitive country. We showed we can be really competitive, sure, but in a Canadian way. Our athletes displayed grace in victory, showing that we can win without losing the qualities that foreigners like about us: our courtesy, our civility and our capacity to share success with others."

And one more thing, my favourite Olympic moment was not hockey gold, or our first ever home soil gold. No, there were 5 distinct moments of these games that made everything feel so very right in the world. Only sport can teach us the thrill of winning alongside agony of defeat and in step with the passings of life. My top 5 olympic moments are:

#5: KD Lang's performance of Hallelujah - awe inspiring.
#4: Being in England watching BBC coverage and the 5 minutes dedicated to explaining the athletic prowess that is Clara Hughes.
#3: John Montgomery's gold medal walk through Whistler village chugging back a pitcher of beer on live TV. Pure Canadiana!
#2: Jeanette Rochelle's short program in figure skating, a legend performance. Rock solid, clutch, legend. Her family must be so, so proud. I know the world sure is.
#1: Melissa Hollingsworth interview 5 minutes after going for gold only to fall to 5th. Tear filled eyes, "I feel like I let my whole country down..." she said. Melissa, you taught Canadians life's biggest lesson that hard work and determination and risk get you *in the game*. How you handle the game, its thrills and spills, is what distinguishes oneself from the rest.

Oh, and every morning and night watching incredible sport, incredible stories, and incredible landscapes with Meredith. We lost count of our tears but rumor has it I cried to Ice Dancing, Figure Skating, Cross snow boarding, and came pretty darn close to crying to Neil Young!

Thank you Vancouver and Whistler for affirming Canada's place among the greatest of nations.

Vive le Canada!