Tuesday, June 30

Auron and beyond

So Xterra this year is out. Pity but we need to move on and deal with it. In my head i am still sorry, but at the same time it makes me want to do it even more. Maybe even try to get in two next year.

Since the cancellation i've decided i need a holiday even more, what better way than to do a holiday than to do a weeks training/riding/eating/relaxing in the French alps. So we decided to go here with these lovely folks: http://www.triathlonholidays.co.uk/triathlontraining.asp

Some HC climbs, bit of running, some swimming and eating and resting. Just what i need in the run up to Dublin City Triathlon. Since Auron is over, this is focal race for the season. Bring on the biff. At least i can get out and practice on the course.

Wedding at the weekend coming up, so kinda just taking a week of unstructured training as Rich puts it...doing what i like. Hour on the bike last night with 2x20mins at FTP. Tonight not sure yet, but may go for a run for an hour, or may go to local airsoft venue. Will have to see.

Thursday, June 25

This is what happens....

...when your wetsuit falls off your shoulder and goes into your wheel.

Tuesday, June 23

Dunmore East Triathlon and other annoyances

Well we were down in Dunmore East for a lovely weekend of sun and sand. unfortunatly not everything lived up to this. Drove down on the friday and camped in a nice we place about 30 mins from the race start. Wandered out to see if we could register, but the website had less than no information so we only had a look about Dunmore East and looked at the start area. Lovely place.

Sat morning it started, first off no lactose free milk for me, so yogurt it was, bring on the burps and farts, but i need to eat. Arrived at registration, i got to skip the que (go being male and under 40!) but Pauline had to stand there for 30 mins, bit shite in my opinion and not very well orginised. But anyway..i went and sussed out the start and got myself and the bikes ready for the time she got back. Dressed up all sexy like in the Belpark kit and we started to roll towards the start. KABOOM, Pauline goes over her bars hard and lands on her back. Couple of panicky minuites checking to see if she'd broken anything then moved her off the road onto the path. thanks to the WTC guys for the help and getting Pauline sorted off to hospital and letting me race! Thanks also to pauline for not breaking herself to bad.

Turns out he wetsuit slipped off her shoulder where she was carrying it, went inbetween her brakes and front wheel, locked up the wheel and threw her over. Thankfully wearing her lid, and was not clipped in at the time. Could have been alot worse, but sure any crash you can walk away from...well hobble anyway.

Needless to say my head was gone for the whole race and i did poor. Not just bad but super poor. I know its a hard course and so on, and blah blah blah, but i did shite. 151st. Ok swim, felt weak on the bike, did crap in the run, couldnt focus at all. Anyway enough about that, so to top it off Xterra France has been cancelled....not going to rant...suffice to say i am not impressed.

Have to go find another race now i suppose. Or save and just do some local races, dunno yet and am not in the mood to think about it at all.

Sunday, June 14

Back to reality and random other bits

Well the jet lag is gone. Was a hard week and to be honest training didn't go exactly as planned. Got a good few sessions in but no where near what i needed to get in. Just could not train the body was drained.

Back coaching with the track guys last week as im taking over for Terry who is away for 3 weeks in France (lucky man). So did a sprint session with the group getting them to work on their skills. Think some people thought it was to advanced, but i've always gone with the idea that you wont improve if you dont put work in, and technique is nearly 100% about repetition, something we dont give out junior riders a chance to do.

Few meetings during the week, then nipped over to the Uk on Wed evening. Savage open water session on Thursday night in an OW venue, £4 for the session in a lovely lake with about 200 ppl rocking out over 2 hours. Few drinks after dinner with some of the Manchester Tri club and late night to bed. Packed the van and legged it to the ferry in Hollyhead on Friday, thought we were going to miss it so lets just say a Irl reg in Uk is a handy thing sometimes. About half way there figured we were fine, but could have been close!

Wednesday, June 10

Jet and lagged

Man i thought i'd got away with it. Pushed out on arrival and hit the bed about 3:30 in the afternoon, but by mistake slept for 16 hours...7:30 the next morning, god i was sore after that.

Since then i've been all over the place with my sleep patterns, just cant get back into a groove where i can go assleep and wake up early. Was talking to someone about possible Fe issues, better look into this some more, as well as it looks like i may be getting more lactose intollerent. Not even funny at this stage, had a pint of mil after the wicklow 200 on sunday, stomach and body have just been in bits since then. I am pratically showing stink lines like a cartoon charachter, i am making smells i did not know were possible. Now this may also be linked to the lack of good food in the states. Not sure yet soe going to have to look into this a bit more.

Wicklow 200 was Sunday. Being the clever sort i slept out, sorry lads. Woke up abruptly and got on the road with the lads, out of the gates at UCD at 8:30 and on the road. What lay ahead, a nice 200km route with allot of climbing, 2,000m or so not sure. Long story short one of the lads bonked maybe 2 hours in, no idea how or why. SO a longer day insued. Kinda happy in one way as i felt dead from the flying and lack of sleep, but at the same time 8hrs in i just wanted to stab everyone in the eyes and watch them scream......i was so so bored. At more than one point i just had to drop off the lads and talk to myself so i would'nt go nuts.

Breath in....breath out....breath in...breath out. Anyway felt fine after, little tired on Monday but no pains bar the one in my shoulder from Whistler. Training has been ok this week but im still all over the shop sleep wise. Not sure why, can never remember jetlag this bad, its not normal, im just sleeping and sleeping and not getting back to normal. Annoying it is.

Off to the UK today, help Pauline pack up and come home on Friday, time off will be nice, dont think i'll even take the laptop, i just want to dissappear for a day or two.

Friday, June 5

Whistler how i love thee

So biking in Whistler ehy? By far one of the best places i have ever ridden, i am biased due to the fact i lived there, but still. Saying that when i lived there i was not as good a rider as i am now. Not by any means. Picked up my DH bike for the day from Summit cycles and waited for lifts to open, hangover abated by a muffin and LARGE coffee. Big kick as beast of a Rocky Mountain Flatline Park edition...yeah words and so on. No idea how it'd ride as i hadnt been on a full on DH rig since my RM9....5 years ago. Saying that it was nice...but so so heavy...and flats....how do i ride on flats again?

Rode on over and got my lift pass for a paltry $46 CN. However i didn't figure how dehydrated i was and nearly passed out on the first lift...that an my HR was through the roof as i looked at the trails on the way up. I'd forgotten just how big Whistler forced you to go. Warmed up on Ez-does it to get the feel of the bike, forgot how shite a trail it was.

Second up lift went straight to B-line, yes yes yes, fast flowy and non technical. 3rd hit B-line again and then added in Heart Of Darkness which has two new big tables on it and a HUGE drop off, nearly spanked myself on it the first time, but god its good when you nail it.

Quick water stop after 4th run to get some fluids in as i was close on passing out, 1l in and two croissants and i was starting to feel the love, 1:30 down in the park, 5:30hrs to go.

Simply put Crank It Up is the best trail i rode out there, huge options from step-ups,wall rides, drops and massive tables all over the place. Best combo Schleyer - Karate monkey - ninja cougar - samuri pizza cat - devils club - H.O.D. narrow and technical with one pedal pushes to drops. Great just great. man DH is so different, fitness was there but not my muscles, XC now need to get more techincal for me, but first i need to get back in the gym :(

Met a sound American dude called Mike, had a good day riding with him till i had a big one and nearly took him down, was retaded on my part, caught my pedal switching into a berm and landed face and shoulder first. Full faces are the best invention ever...as is definite. Great night out with Mike on Monday even if the others decided to take it easy...slackers. Few beers in Longhorns then up to Citta until they kicked us out about 1am. Bed and passed out.

Lost lake the day after so the others could see it and enjoy some sunshine, i just chilled out with them, but in my head i was just looking for an excuse not to go home. I had one or two in my head that were there but one main reason. Saying that i know that unlike other reasons this one i can take with me to BC at some stage.

Its ironic last time i was here i was lonely on my own, this time i was lonley but with people.

Seattle 2 Canada....and Keiths

Good conference is what i will say for ACSM. Big trend on the performance side was the train low recover low glycogen idea. I understand the train low, something i do for longer spins, but not the recover low. I like food, i like to insert it pretty damn quick after a session. Sure i don't aim to super compensate but im not waiting 4 hours to eat after a session. Simple as.

Other good talks across various topics over the week and some interesting posters in my own area. Many questions asked and received and many emails to be sent. But i have to be honest by Friday afternoon and my poster i was all scienced out and just wanted to leave, i even had to go buy a shirt in The Gap to fit in for my presentation. Apparently pit shirts don't quite cut it. Whooda thunk it.

Seattle is a kick ass town, loved the area we were in. Liberal is a word to describe it but it felt relaxed, some of the group found the whole LGB thing a bit wierd but i thought it was kinda cool. PPl were friendly and i even spent a night just drinking with locals. But over all the atmos in Seattle is great. Relaxed, fit and happy. No heckling while out running in the city and people wanted to ask you about your training while you stopped to stretch. Never get that at home. Makes me once again realise how detached i feel from the irish population.

Good night out on Friday with the group in a super pub with 160 draft beers, yum yum. Nice to get out with Giles to see a different side of him, spent most of the night talking to Caron, new head med officer for Australian Horse racing, lovely woman, gave me some new ideas for my training and lack of sleeping. Sat morning we went to some outlet mall just south of the border...well we eventually went...i HATE waiting for people. Wandered about and got some stuff but nothing much, not one for shops that dont have bikes, let alone Abercrombie and Fitch...

Did the usual tourist things in Seattle aswell; tour on lake Union, Dinner in the Space Needle, and Science museaum. Others did more but i decided to clock up miles on my legs. Lovely running there, hilly and constant. Legs feel strong but they took a beating.

Crossed the border with no issues, bar the hot Canadian girl in the booth making the males in the car speak 5 year old, then drove on up to Vancouver to get some foods and meet Colm for a few drinks. Well more than a few TBH.....Alexander Kieths how i have missed thee. God i love that beer, and so i decided i need to attempt to drink all of the stocks in BC.

Next day saw us off to Whistler via Squamish and some other gorgeous sites along the way. The drive up was a bit of an emotional rollercoaster of 'OH MY GOD' and 'god i miss this'. Forgotton how much of an impression BC and Canada made on me (those who know me well will want o abuse my store and abooting next). Rocking up in Whistler i ditched my bags and got ready to bomb out to town...others wanted to kick about the hotel...WTF kids WTF. Got them out and went for a wander, sure it was warm but its Canada its not always like this! Let them do there own thing and went out for a run to lost lake, went for a sneaky swim at the same time ;)

Bombed back, and hit Citta for dinner, such a good spot, best onion rings in Whistler bar none. Few brews and then off to Longhorns for a few more....well ok many more. Bad bad idea....so hungover the next morning. Woke up and knew i was going to have a rough day in the park...just like old times really TBH.