Friday, May 23, 2014

A Week of Fun N' Training

Whoa!! Lots of training - so little time to blog.

The previous week was like many of the preceding weeks - all layered up with cool temps and strong winds - good times. Sara and I got out on a rare ride together.

Since Mother's Day was fast approaching I did my long run on the Friday. I did some rolling hills leading the rail trail then headed south. I always like doing an out and back because it forces you to get the distance in by heading as far away from home as the plan calls for. I only got rained on a couple of times. More importantly I got to wear shorts and short sleeve - it was that warm! I ended up doing 25k over 2:25 - a good long slow effort. I finished up at 7pm. With my long ride tomorrow morning it would be lots of endurance work in a short period.

Bored Dork on the trail. The next morning I rode 40k with the Beast and then headed out on my own (into the heavy wind, again!) for 85k to give me 125k on the day.

For Mother's Day we all headed down to St. Catharines for the Chocolate Run. Logan and I were doing the 2.5K, my Mom and sister were doing the 10k walk, and Sara was taking on the 16k. As the name suggests there was lots of chocolate - at the aid stations, when finishing - booyah! It was very loud for Logan but he performed admirably. His reward for finishing? 2 Hershey bars! Better than a medal in his book.

Proud Mom and son gettin it done. The weather was perfect - not a cloud in the sky. After Logan's run Sara lined up for the 16k. She had a great race! Given the amount of training she was able to get in, she crushed it. She finished the race in 1:23 and placed 1st in the 30-39 AG!! I was very proud of her - it was a great surprise on a day that honours all Moms. Sara's a terrific Mother and her result made the day that much sweeter (chocolate pun inserted on purpose). My Mom and sister Michelle completed the 10k walk in just over 1.5 hours - my Mom's longest race in her short career (she did a 5k in late March). It's never too late to pursue new goals. Love it!!

The proud ladies!

Unfortunately Sara came down with strep the next day. She was feverish over night. It made her race result all the more epic. On a positive note she got a pass on all the painting we were doing throughout the house! Well played Sara, well played (just kidding). With confirmed strep the doctor gave her some antibiotics. It, however, was not going to be a long weekend of training as she recovered. At least she'd get all the rest she needs.

This year we switched gears and headed to a new location for our annual long weekend training extravaganza. This time we went to Blue Mountain. Sara and I got up mid-afternoon on Friday. Since everyone else had limited running under there belt I decided to get my long run in before they all arrived. I headed from the village down to the water to hook up with the Georgian Bike Trail.

Great soft surface - goes on for miles. The plan was to go out 11k and turn around and head back for a 22k round trip.

The new Kinvara's.

Beautiful sunny day but 2C and windy.

Hello Vitamin D!

The view from our condo looking on the village and ski slope.

Recovery beverage.

Peter and I got some epic riding in. Here we are before ascending Scenic Caves road. This road is about 3k of 8-10%. Combined with the wind it was a tough grind. Once up top on the escarpment it was even windier and the hills did not let up.

Peter powered up as usual!

Great shot of the machines looking out over the lake and village where we started.

Saw lots of these signs!

Peter and Susan got a run in post ride - it was up and down the mountain. This area is such a playground for activity.

The next day Peter, Susan and I headed out for more hilly riding. The plan: go as far as possible before dinner. Susan would go as far as 35k out before heading back for 70k total. We headed up County Rd 19 which is an epic stair-step style climb that seems to go on forever. Again up top saw more wind and hills. Once Susan headed back Peter and I went out exploring. We saw lots of Mennonites out in their Sunday best. We got lots of curious looks from them in our bike gear.

No surprise there are lots of turbines here!

Our lunch stop in Singhampton. A 4-way stop in the middle of nowhere. We were starving so this was it. The food was good. Our waiter's wife did IM Coz which was cool.

We descended, yet again, into Creemore. Had to get a pic of the brewery. The climb out of Creemore was steep! Overall we got 127k in. It was, by far, the hardest 127k I've ever done!!

Post ride it was a couple of beers and onto dinner in the village. Here's John and Sheila pre-dinner. Notice the lack of layers?! We was beautiful out. Love it!

Our restaurant - stone oven pizzas - Yum!

Some margaritas and some wine = a fine evening.

Peter the next day. No story here - I just had to post this pic. Something about the Einstein-like hair and the oversized Crocs with socks....slow clap for Peter!

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Happy 48th Birthday to Me!!

For my pre-birthday weekend I got a solid block of training with a 2500m swim, 21k run with loads of hills (and rain), and an 81k bike - again with loads of hills and HIGH winds. At one point in the ride I hit a whopping 23k going down a decent hill. One of the things I love about riding is seeing new places.

I rode with Big Rob. Halfway into the ride he suggested grabbing a coffee. We rode to St. George - a place I had never been. There we stopped at Brown Dog Coffee. I don't know if it was because of the wind and exposure to the elements but I had the best Americano I've ever had and a banana-choco chip muffin - Yum!

After snack time we got back at it and sought out as many hills as possible. Rob took it easy on the Ol' Man. Dude's got power!

On the way back we passed African Lion Safari - hard to see but there's a lion there.

My Lion Face - Dork!

Post ride it was off to the Folks place for a birthday dinner. I think I ate my body weight in ribs! A couple of beers and glasses of wine seemed appropriate. The Caramilk cake was delish.

Hangin loose - Kona Dreamin style! My birthday plan? A run, maybe a swim (maybe), soccer with Logan, and a movie with Sara (we NEVER get to do that!). Lookin forward to it. Sun is shining, life is good.

Friday, May 2, 2014

This and That Training Edition

Spring is here. Still cooler than the historical average and wet but training is going well. Both Sara and I are getting used to our new awesome machines. After 4 or 5 rides I feel as I'm at one with my bike. I dropped down a size to a 52 and I'm glad I did. I feel more comfortable and feel the difference the carbon makes. I recently sold my old Cannondale 2000 aluminum tribike. It was a great bike - got me through 6 Ironmans and countless other races and training rides. It went to a guy in Kitchener who's getting into tris - love it!

Sara's, after some tweaking, is finding her position on her new bike. The last couple of weekends I got two 110K rides in. I usually head out on my own for 40-50K then Sara and I ride the rest together. It's been fun riding together - we don't get many opportunities to do that.

We stopped on one of our rides to rescue this turtle that was in the middle of the road and likely to be squashed at some point. Turtles are one of my fav creatures. Sara and Logan tell me I'm too slow and have nicknamed me Honu - Hawaiian for turtle.

While visiting Aylmer, Sara and I did some trail running on a beautiful Saturday morning. It was perfect conditions with great scenery.

Lovin the sunshine!!

Super Dork!

An important part of any training program is a dedicated focus on recovery. Here Logan is accurately demonstrating how I generally recover post workout. Very funny Dude!


So true. I think about this when I run into "problems". Most of the crap doesn't really classify as problems - it's just normal life small stuff we project more emotion into. Sometimes a change in perspective and attitude is all we need.

Another great pile of quotes.

My happy place - Cheers!