Monday, December 5, 2011

Testing Round 2 - Tie Game: Test 1 - Me 1

I am a bit late getting this up but a couple weeks ago I did retesting for running and cycling (swimming is a pain because the lifeguards don't like blood on the pool deck).

The run test was first and we did that on the Saturday morning. It included an approximate 4.4k solo effort. I started out way to fast with the 1st kilometer clocked at 3:10 and gradually slowed down from there. Still managed to run close to 5k pace, and even better news was that my running improved. My zone 1 and zone 2 saw huge jumps and the other zones saw some increases as well. Score: me 1 test 0.

The cycling test was the next day and included a 20k tt. This is the longest hard effort I have done since training started back up in September. This did not go as well as I hoped it would and we saw very little improvement. Score: me 1 test 1.

This next phase is going to put more emphasis on the bike and run as we build on the swim focus of the last couple months. We are going to be throwing in some tempos and hills to try and build some strength in these chicken legs. We have another 800m swim tt on Wednesday, and I have been feeling amazing after the swim camp. I am sure my time will be faster; the question is just how much?

I probably will not post again until after exams so good luck to all the students on their December finals. Happy Holidays

P.S. I hate rain

Monday, November 21, 2011

Swim Camp

This last weekend we did a mini swim camp to finish up the first training block of the season. My swim has been feeling great lately, and others have commented on how my stroke has improved night and day. This weekend we put all that training to the test with a double Friday, double Saturday, and a single Sunday. We ended up swimming over 20k in those three days, and I ended up with just over 27k for the week. Prior to this the most I ever swam in a week was 25k so to do 20k in just three days was tough.

Friday was actually the worst day of the three. I am not sure if I was just to pumped up for the weekend, tired from writing lab reports all day, or maybe it was just one of those rough day. Either way I had absolutely no gas. The second swim consisted of struggling through some 400s, and praying the whole weekend was not going to be this bad.

Saturday was the biggest day, and we did two swim of approximately 4200 and 4800. I was in the zone for these and just focused on what ever intervals were in front of me and not worrying. We did a hard set of 50s and managed to swim a couple 35s (scm) which I can't complain about when my pb is 33.

Sunday was the final day and just consisted of 4100m. We did a lot of fins today as our arms were dying and ready to fall off. The very last thing of the camp though was a 200m for time. I went out hard giving everything I had knowing that 200m was nothing when I looked back on the whole weekend. I managed to swim 2:35ish which I think is a pb.

All in all the swim camp was excellent, and I am running on a mental high after completing it. This week is super easy to recover from all the training in the last few weeks and let it sink in. The next phase is going to involve some hard running and cycling and my first test (Santa Shuffle 5k at Victoria Park).

What did you do this weekend?

Monday, November 7, 2011

Midterms are done

Midterms are finally over which coincides perfectly with a small up in training. I am already seeing tons of improvements in my running and swimming, but haven't done any real tests on the bike yet. My 800m tt in the pool dropped a minute in 4 weeks (the first time I had to do a 400 and 200 afterwards so maybe some difference mentally). I am super excited by that, and I should only get faster as we start to increase the volume a bit. This weekend I did a run set of 3x1mile with 90 seconds rest and felt amazing (5:11, 5:15, 5:19). The last time I did mile repeats I did 5 with 5 minutes rest and only went 5:25 5:16 5:20 5:30 5:44. I am going to be doing the Santa Shuffle 5k in a couple weeks, and get a real test of where I am at. If I can run a pb this early in the season that will be awesome.

I hope everyone's training is also going well. Remember triathlon is a winter sport played out in the summer.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Triathlon As A University Sport

After reading THIS article it made me think of triathlon at the university level in Canada. . . O wait triathlon at the university level in Canada is almost nonexistent. I can't speak for out west or out east, but from what I have seen in Ontario and heard from talking to people is that most schools do not have triathlon clubs. Those that do are not places for elite development but introduction. Don't get me wrong there is nothing wrong with that, but there needs to be another level. That next level may be pushing for triathlon to be a "competitive club"/varsity team or just having coached groups that keep running year round. There are a few hot spots such as Guelph where triathletes who have gotten into the sport prior to going off to school end up, but from my (small) amount of knowledge they are not involved with the university except the couple that may be on other varsity teams. In Ontario we have the UMS which basically consists of Queen's, Western, and Waterloo and has a couple races each year. This is a great spot to start recruiting as the athletes already have a bit of interest in triathlon. Why not coordinate these clubs with Triathlon Ontario and use it to recruit new people to triathlon. This is how I got my start and a couple other I know got started as well. We had to do this on our own though. My first year I knew nothing about triathlon, and besides a couple teammates there wasn't anyone to help. Here is a great idea . . . what if Triathlon Ontario came to the UMS championships. The night before there could be a dinner with a couple guest speakers. This would allow them to possibly get more members (money) and enlighten new comers to what is all out there. Along with this if they see potential in someone they could actively recruit them and direct them to clubs in that persons area. This would take worth from both the school clubs and Triathlon Ontario, but why not have a sanctioned race. I do not think the costs would increase to much.

Now for recruiting from other sports, and I think this is where the development system would benefit the greatest. Maybe this is just the American in me, but why not try to get the best athletes into triathlon. I am sorry if I offend any of my Canadian runner friends, but lets be serious only a small handful of runners in the CIS are going to be running on the national and international level after graduation. Most of the good Canadian runners are running in the NCAA, but the majority of runners in the CIS would make world class runners in triathlon. Triathlon Canada's world standard for U23s is sub 15 for the 5k and each varsity team probably has at least one guy who can do this. Last year in the CIS 21 guys ran the U23 world standard in the 3k and another 11 ran the intermediate standard. Then it would just take a little bit of work to see which ones may have done some swimming in high school or use swimming for cross training, and tada you have a potential world class triathlete. I don't know much about swimming, but it seems like every varsity swim team is full of guys who can swim sub 18 for the 1500. Yes it is hard to become good at the other sports, but they already have the aerobic engine and the work ethic.

This may not make any sense at all. I know my ideas flow terribly, but I am just putting my ideas onto paper for you all to read.


Monday, October 3, 2011

Guess Who's Back

I doubt I have any true followers, but just in case I do I am sorry I haven't blogged in awhile. I have been super busy with school, I now have a job at Multisport-Zone, and training is in full swing.

This semester of school is a bit of a doosey with three courses that have a lab component, but starting in January when the training picks up I don't have any so it actually works out pretty nice that way. After this year I will only have to make up for one credit which I plan on doing online during the summer or next fall. After that I am going to have to pursue a job that will help to pay the bills while I attempt to be a professional triathlete.

On that note I just received an email from Linda Kirk at Triathlon Ontario that they have granted me my elite card for short course races starting in January 2012, and once I get my draft card I will be able to do elite draft legal races as well. All this means is that I am going to have to improve my swim a ton!!! To help with this I have hired Cliff from Transition Point Training. So far it has been amazing with a very scientific approach to training. Blood + sweat + science = perfection.

I am not going to go into to much detail on what we are doing, but after looking over the long term plan today I am actually excited for all the hard work ahead.

I did not want to write to much today so I could save some for a later date but stay posted for a tentative 2012 race schedule coming your way. 

Happy early Thanksgiving,

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Back At It

My two week rest is finally over and with the return to training also brings with it the return of school. The next couple weeks I am just going to ease my way back into training. I am calling this the -ish phase where training volume doesn't matter much. If I swim 2300 or 1800 I am just calling it 2kish.

Signed up for masters swimming with Ken Fitzpatrick again this year, and it filled up super fast. Hopefully some of them will be fast swimmers and not just fast to sign up. Zorian, Chris, and Rachel didn't sign up in time, but are going to talk to him so hopefully they will get to swim also.

I am excited to start training again, and I am already looking forward to next year.

Friday, August 26, 2011


I know its been a while since the race, but I was actually working a bit so I haven't been on the computer as much.

The race went well overall, but the run still stunk. I am not sure if I drank to much on the bike or if my expired eload finally caught up with me. I cramped big time and could hardly breathe. It sucked though because my legs were feeling great, but every time I tried to pick up I could not breath.

Compared to Knoxville I was faster on the bike and swim, but my run was 3:30 slower. I feel I could have run sub 36 and placed in the top 10. Live and learn.

I am going to take off until school starts up again so you won't have to read another race report for a long time. I might try to write some posts that actually have some substance. The plan once training starts again is to really focus on swimming until Christmas while just riding and running a bit. After Christmas I will reevaluate and start to build my bike and run. Hopefully that swim focus will get me to where I can make a pack in draft legal then I can focus on my run to try and win races.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Pre Nationals

Made it to Kelowna safely last night after a delay coming into Calgary, and most importantly the bike arrived in one piece. I put it together this morning and went for a short ride to get the legs going. I wish I wasn't here to race because this has to be one of the nicest places to ride, and I just want to go out and hammer some long rides in the mountains.

This afternoon went for a short swim and drove the bike course. I was freezing in the lake so I hope we get to wear our wetsuits. If not I might freeze on the bike. The bike course looks pretty sweet and should work to my advantage with the climbing. It is three loops and each loop seems to be uphill for most of the first half then downhill for the second. I think I will use this to hammer the first half of the last loop then let my legs recover a bit for the run. 

I can't wait to rock this. Tomorrow we get our waves at the prerace briefing. Fingers crossed I will be in an early wave so I won't have to weave my way through so many people. I wish they would let everyone contending for the overall start in the same wave. Its hard when you don't know where you are compared to guys that might have started two minutes before or after you.

I am heading to bed though the time change is killing me. I woke up at 5:30 am local time today and could not fall back asleep. Good luck to everyone racing Bulldog tri this weekend.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Windsor Race Report

WOW I never thought I would blow up that bad. Immediately after the race I wanted to pretend it never happened and just move on to the next. However, there is something you can learn from every race.
Things I learnt this weekend:

I bike like a girl (no offense I know some girls are really good but the fastest guys are faster than the fastest girls). Actually I only beat the fastest girl by 2 seconds.

If I want to race to my best I need to block everything out and focus on my race. I got a bit caught up with the whole my first elite race. While I had a great swim (1:40/100m without a wetsuit) and first part of the bike (probably around 45kmh for the first 6 km) I blew up and pretty much crawled the last half of the bike and the run. Maybe had I started out a bit slower I would have been able to finish strong with a quicker total time.

Lastly, patience. Which is funny because I have seen this pop up a couple places lately like from Gerard Vroomen of Cervelo. I would be crazy to think that after a year and a half of truly training for triathlons that I would be able to beat some of the fastest guys in Canada. My parents were talking to Andrew Yorke before the race and he said he has been doing triathlons for SEVEN years. If I could keep up with a guy like that after one year I would sell my training plan to everyone and become a millionaire. If I keep working like I have been and seeing the improvements I have seen so far I have no doubt I will be able to stick with the top in triathlon. Just look at my swim results from this year compared to last. Last year I did one non wetsuit swim and it was 500m in Belle River and I averaged 2:24/100m this weekend I averaged 1:40/100m for 800m.

However now it is time to focus for age group nationals. I am leaving in ten days and I have to shake off this weekend and move on. I haven't done any track workouts in a while as I have been focusing so much on the bike so Thursday I will be on the track, both Tuesdays and Saturday will be some hard zone 5 bike intervals, and I will probably get in a good swim TT either end of this week or beginning of next week with a couple other hard swims in there.

So not truly a race report, but this will probably be more helpful to anyone that reads it then if I just wrote a summary of the race. I hope everyones training is going well as the end of the season approaches. Take advantage of the warm weather because there will be snow soon enough. Cheers

Monday, August 1, 2011

K-Town Race Report

10 Seconds!!! After almost 90 minutes of racing I lost by 10 seconds. This was a heart breaker since I have been second so many times this year and to be so close to standing on the top of the podium. Starting the bike I was around 2 minutes back from the leader and knew I was going to have to work pretty hard to make up the gap. 10 seconds really made me take a close look at my race to see if there is anywhere I could have made up the time. So here is what I came up with:

The swim and T1 (12:33 9th overall). I feel like there is always some time that can be gained in the swim. Maybe if I wouldn't have sat on some feet, but maybe this would have used more energy and killed me later. Maybe if I sited better. For transition maybe I should have put my number belt and glasses on while riding.

The bike (48:36 6th overall). I think I was probably around 5th after the bike, but this is where the eventual winner put in 2:16 on me. I thought this was a tough bike course with hardly a flat spot to be found. I would compare it to Knoxville, but the climbs here were much shorter and steeper which I found harder than the long gradual climbs of the Smokey Mountains. Add to the hills a strong head wind, and I got my butt kicked. I still averaged 37kmh so I can't complain to much. Maybe if I would have pedaled harder down the hills instead of getting into a tuck I could have made up some time or if stayed in the aerobars over the sketchy bridge instead of playing it safe I could have saved a couple seconds.

The run and T2 (26:14 fastest run by 1:13) I had a great run, and everything felt like it was clicking until the final 800m. I passed a couple guys early, and could always see someone ahead of me so I just kept pushing. There were a couple hills on the course and just kept focusing on the leader. Coming down the homestretch was amazing with all the people cheering. I was giving everything I had to the point where my form became terrible and I could taste puke in my mouth, but I just ran out of room. If the race had been another kilometer I think I would have caught him.

So many little things that could have added up to the ten seconds I lost, but I don't have time to worry to much as I am racing in the elite race this weekend at the Tecumseh triathlon. Looking forward to racing some of the fastest non-drafting athletes in Ontario.

Shout out to Zorian, Daniela, and the rest of the Kingston guys it was an awesome weekend and the KCVI relay was smokin fast.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Letting you know I'm alive

Just letting everyone know I am still alive since I have not posted in a while. I have been busy training hard these last couple weeks really focusing on my bike and swim as a start to prepare for ag nationals. I have done a couple small running races, but I haven't run anything special except a 3:02 first k in the one 5k. It killed me though, and I pretty much crawled the rest of the race. Next up is the k-town tri in Kingston and then the Tecumseh triathlon where the race director is allowing me to race elite. Hopefully I can make a little paper since I am broke after not working all summer.

Peace and have a good one.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Blood Testing, Lactate Testing, and Dehydration

Last week I took an easy recovery week to recover from all the racing I have done so far. With this down time I figure it was perfect to get my blood tested to make sure everything was in check. The main things I were interested in were my hematocrit and ferritin levels. Everything came out to be within the normal range, but I am far from being a genetic freak. My hematocrit was .44 and .50 is kind of the arbitrary line they made for doping. Ferritin was 144ug/L which I was glad to see because I know a lot of endurance athletes have problems with iron levels.

This week I am trying to get back on to a normal schedule and decided to get a cycling lactate test done with Cliff at Transition Point Training and MultiSport Zone. It was a great experience and hopefully will get me to where I need to be on the bike. My aerobic power was 165w and my anaerobic power was 193w. Cliff's suggestion was that I need to raise my anaerobic power first then raise the aerobic power.

Indoor cycling in the summer equals tons of sweating. I have never sweat so much in my life as when I did the lactate test. I should have taken this as a sign that I may need to drink a lot to refuel. I didn't do this. Went out to the Tuesday night bike ride, and my legs were absolutely toast. I was doing everything I could to hang with the leaders. A combination of both these rides absolutely wrecked my body. When I got home I was cold and shivering then hot and sweating. Tried to stomach some food, and thought I was going to throw up for sure. Still felt terrible the next day and just stayed in bed drinking water all day. I was finally able to eat a bit at dinner. Tried running a bit today, but I cut it a bit short as my stomach was really upset didn't feel 100%. I am going to try and do an easy swim tonight.

I would also like to thank MultiSport Zone for the sponsorship. I can't wait to rock the tri suit in my next race.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Leamington Race Report

This weekend was my 3rd race in as many weeks, and surprisingly I still had some gas in the tank for one more solid effort. This was was the one I wanted to do best in out of the three since it was age group provincial sprint championships, and there was going to be some tough competition with Josh Seifarth and Ryan Power being on the confirmation list.
The day started with getting up at 4:15am, and we were out the door by 5. I was the first person at the race, and this allowed me to just get in the zone and start setting up my transition area. The 7:30am start time was way too early for my liking, and I was glad I had been getting up at 5 all through the school year to swim.

Swim - 4th 11:31 (1:33/100m)
The race started about 10 minutes late, but these ten minutes felt like an eternity. I tried to just keep moving. The harbour at Leamington was overrun with weeds and the current pretty strong. That is one problem with being little, I just get tossed around. I tried to get into a rhythm and after the first buoy I started feeling pretty good.  Andrew Lee and Ryan came out of the water just behind me, and this really helped to push me on the bike.

Bike – 4th 33:18 (36kmh)
I moved into 2nd during transition, but didn’t realize so I went out hard on the bike. I really tried to push the first half since it was into the wind. The first bike going the other way passed me about 750m from the turn around. I was a bit nervous because it was not Josh, and I thought there were others in front of me. It turned out that they were in the duathlon. Coming off the bike Ryan was still nipping at my heels so I knew I had to put in a good run or he was going to get me.

Run – 1st 18:04 (3:30/km)
The run went extremely well, and I had the fastest run in the race. The run was two loops. This was nice for the spectators especially my brother who made it to his first race and my uncle and cousins who came to watch. I find these types of courses hard to get rolling on because as soon as I start to really roll I have to slow down and turn around. I’ve heard the run was between 300m and 400m long which means this would have been my first sub 17 minute 5k in a tri. It pretty awesome because it took me until this spring to break 17 in an open 5k (did it once in high school but that was a long time ago). Unfortunately it was not enough, and I ended up with another second.

I just want to say congrats to everyone especially all the first timers. Max Lowther has improved his swim 100% and completed his first tri, and Dan and Ming completed their first du. Hopefully all will stick with it and keep improving.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Woodstock Triathlon

All my posts lately have been race reports, but next weekend in Leamington will be my last of three tris in three weeks. After that I will have a couple weeks off of racing before I gear up for a strong end of season finish.

Overall I had a great race at Woodstock, but I still have some small things that need to be worked on. I was second overall, and won my age group in a time of 1:30:00. However, the winner was about four minutes ahead.

Swim - 750m 11:53 (1:35 pace)
The swim went well, and I was able to get some open water ahead of me and get in to a rhythm. I was 6th out of the water compared to last years 42nd. I was a couple seconds per hundred meters faster than Knoxville, but the race was half the distance. I felt strong and controlled the whole way.

Bike - 30k 50:52 (35.4 kmh)
On the bike I had the 5th fastest bike split but still remained in 6th place because I only passed one person, and one person passed me. I felt like I had no power in my legs during the bike. This could be due to a number of reasons as it was really windy and a pretty hilly course (for southwestern Ontario). By this point the leader already had a five minute advantage over me, but the rest were within a couple minutes. I knew I was going to have to have a big run if I wanted to catch them.

Run - 7.6k 25:50 (3:24/km)
I'm not sure if not having legs on the bike helped my run, but I had my best triathlon run to date. I felt absolutely amazing. The Woodstock course is a hard one to make up time because you cannot really see anyone ahead of you due to the twists and turns. Luckily I was able to keep catching glimpses of the people ahead. I knew I was reeling them in, but they were strong runners. I caught the first guy about a kilometer in, then about 4k, and finally the last one at about 6k (the other person ahead of me started in the wave after me so I didn't actually no he was ahead). When I caught Cliff with 1.6k to go I could not drop him, so I went into my bag of track tactics. When we hit the windy stretch going across the dam I dropped the pace immediately, and he moved to the front. I sat right on his heels, and with about 450 to go I made my final move. Cliff is strong runner so I just made sure to focus ahead and not slow down.

Overall it was an excellent performance, and I was able to show some people just how hard I have been working. This weekend is Leamington Sprint Provincials so it should be another tough race. I have to thank my grandparents for letting me stay at their house for the weekend, and my parents once again being there to cheer me on and support me. Once again Multisport Canada put on an excellent race, and I have enjoyed all their races I have done.

I am off to the pool. Have a good day everyone.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Belle River Triathlon

I decided on writing a quick race report from the Belle River triathlon this morning before I go out for my run. It was an excellent race, and my first win in an open triathlon.

Swim 600m + 400m run to transitions - 10:33 (1:46/100m)
Belle River and Knoxville are perfect examples of why you cannot compare triathlon results from race to the next as conditions and course can vary so much. In Knoxville I swam 1:37s for almost 3 times the distance. I blame the approximately 400m run to transition. Either way this was my best placing in the swim. I came out of the water in third with both first and second in sight.

Bike 30k plus T1 and T2 - 44:24 (40.5 kmh)
The bike felt very good, and I was riding behind the lead car for the whole thing except a small part when I was putting my shoes on. Compared to the rolling course in Knoxville the Belle River course was pancake flat. This showed when I averaged almost 4 kmh faster over only 10k shorter. It felt good to be in the lead, and I just kept the head down trying to keep everyone away.

Run 5k - 17:20 (3:28)
After pushing hard on the bike I had nothing left in the tank for the run. I think the only thing that got me to the finish line was that I was in the lead. I was actually surprised I ran this fast because it did not feel like it.

They didn't have mats to separate the transition times from the bike times, but both my transitions were much faster than the others in the race. I was able to go from third to first during the first transition. This is becoming a pattern as I did the same thing in Kingston and the Queen's Spring Fling.

Overall I put together a pretty solid performance through all three disciplines. This was my first of three triathlons in three weeks. This weekend I will be doing the Woodstock Triathlon that is part of the Multisport Canada Series. This race will have a bigger field with some strong competitors if it is anything like last year. I am getting pumped because my parents said if I can finish out this triple strong they are going to try and send me to Kelowna for age group nationals.

It was a busy weekend of racing around the world, and congrats to everyone on some big performances.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Summer Race Schedule

So this summer I am going with the strategy of racing myself into the best possible shape I can be in. To not miss my long rides and runs I am going with Monday long runs and Tuesday long bikes (this is when the group in Chatham rides so that works well). I will couple those with a bike workout on Wednesday, run workout Friday, and brick/race on Sundays.

So the race schedule for the summer is
June 5th - Belle River tri
June 12th - Woodstock tri
June 19th - Leamington tri
July 10th - Peterborough tri (I may skip this depending on how I am feeling and my financial situation)
July 23rd - Bluewater tri (sarnia)
August 7th - Windsor or Bracebridge I am leaning towards Windsor because it looks like the faster race and it is closer
August 21st - Chatham
September - I may do lakeside, but it will depend on how I am feeling after all the racing early in summer.

Hope I will see you at some of these races. Let me know which ones you are doing.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Rev3 Knoxville Olympic - Race Report

I am so glad to finally be done Knoxville and to be able to say it was a success. I registered for this race in the beginning of January and it has been on my mind since. This was my first time racing the Olympic distance, since the race in Sarnia definitely has a short swim. My time was 2:07:41 and I finished 37th overall, 33rd overall male, 8th non-professional, and 2nd in the 20-24 age group.

Swim 1500m 23:24 including approximately 300m run to transition (1:37/100m) 58th overall (9th age group)
The swim started out with approximately 400m into the current then a turn around and 1100m to the exit. My plan was to go out hard in the first 400m and try to get into a good position. Well my fast just is not quite as fast as the others and I felt like I was swimming alone the entire race even though there were people all around. The male 20-24 was the 2nd last wave to start and we made up the 2 minute head start on the wave before us pretty fast. The Half Rev started before the Olympic Rev, but had to swim further than us. Therefore, once I made the turnaround a was weaving around and over some of the back of back Half Rev and Olympic Rev swimmers, and this made it very difficult to get into a good rhythm. When I got out of the water I heard my dad yell I was about 3:30 minutes behind the leaders in my age group so I knew I had my work cut out for me at this point. 

T1 - 1:48 in 58th (9th) out 52nd (7th)
Terrible transition. Got into transition and my bike pump got knocked over and was in my way so I had to move that before I could get my bike out. Then on the way out I dropped my sunglasses. However, I still managed to pass 2 people so I'm not quite sure what they were doing.

Bike - 40km 1:05:09 (36.8kph) start 52nd (7th) finish 40th (3rd)
The bike ride went really well for how much hill riding I get to do during training. There was not a single flat section on the course, but luckily there were not any really steep climbs just a lot of long gradual ups and downs. The first part of the bike was the harder part of the bike with the exception of one climb in the second half so I really hammered during this section trying to catch all the fish. I realized I am a pretty strong climber for a triathlete as people seemed to be standing still as I went past. The course was not a true out and back so I had no clue how many people were still ahead of me. There were a few guys on the side of the road that had mechanicals and flats so that moved me up a couple positions as well. 

T2 - :49 in 40th (3rd) out 41st (3rd)
Another terrible transition. My running shoes are a little tricky to get on, and I had them covered because it looked like it was going to rain.

Run - 10k 36:31 (3:39/km) start 41st (3rd) end 33rd (2nd)
The run was a bit flatter than the bike, but still had some long gradual ups and downs with a couple steeper ones. Except for maybe the last mile I could always see someone ahead so I would just say go get the next one. The first 4.5k I averaged 3:41s and the last 5.5 in 3:37s so I think I could have probably pushed a bit harder at the beginning.

From this race I know I need to keep doing what I am doing and just keep improving. If I compare my bike and run to Sarnia (same distances but perfectly flat and a way shorter swim before) I was 3 minutes faster on the bike and 2 minutes faster on the run. Not to bad since my main focus has been on swimming and only running a couple times a week. I need to work on my open water swimming because I felt very awkward and my stroke did not feel smooth. I think this should come with just doing it more. This week I will probably just take it easy, then get back to work at the end of the week beginning of next week depending on how I feel. I still need to find a job for the summer so I am not sure if I will be in London or Chatham for the rest of summer, but I hope London since swimming in Chatham is lacking.

Next triathlon will be Woodstock on June 12th, and I hope to see some of you there.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Knoxville Prerace

Hey everyone I am in currently in Knoxville, Tennessee getting ready to race the Rev3 Olympic Race here. This morning I went out and drove then rode the bike course and the roads are absolutely beautiful. The majority of the bike course are back country roads that always seem to be going gradually up or down but no major steep climbs. It is so much nicer than riding in squares around cornfields. I didn't get to swim in the river yet because nothing was marked, and I wasn't sure if it was a good idea to just swim because they were doing some construction on a bridge and large chunks of concrete were falling into the river. Tomorrow I will be swimming in it for sure though and then doing a short run.

The drive went well and my legs felt great on the bike today so maybe compression where works. I picked up a pair of the CEP compression sleeves before leaving on Thursday and I am debating racing in them as well.

I'm off to dinner though and I will update the blog after the race. Cheers

Wednesday, April 27, 2011


Today I did some testing with Cliff on the computrainers at Multisport Zone. We did a ramp test I believe it was called where we started at 125w and increased it by 25w every 3 minutes. It was killer, and I was feeling good until about 250w then once I hit 275w I was done. It was great to get my zones, and I'm going to try to start using my heart rate monitor more on rides. It looks like testing could become a permanent thing at Multisport Zone so keep checking it out. Just a short post because I have to get back to trying to be Canadian and watch some hockey.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Downtown 5k race report

Today was a beautiful day in London, ON . . . not it was about 5oC with pretty strong winds. The course was a 2.5k loop with 2 gradual climbs, one in the first k for about 400m and one in the last 500m. After looking at the results from the last couple years and seeing numerous guys sub 16 and a couple sub 15 times I decided I was just going to go out with the leaders tuck in and let them do the work. If I enter a race I am entering to win it, and I am not going to go out there with my watch and pace the whole thing. I would rather blow up in the first k running 2:30 and at least say I did what I could to try and win then go out run 3:25 and maybe end up with a faster time.

I'm not sure what the splits were, but blow up I did. I went out with Kyle "Real Deal" O'Neil and Aaron Hendrikx for the 1st 2k. They were able to drop me we when we turned back to the finish line and were going up the little bump. For the next 500m I just cruised along with Suda who dropped back a little earlier than myself. He passed me at probably around the 3k mark. This worked perfectly for me since this is when we turned into to the wind a went back up the other little hill. I tried hanging on for as long as I could but he dropped me just at the top of the hill. Now I was stuck in no mans land listening to the thud thud thud of a guy trying to chase me down as a began to truly suffer. At 4k I decided I was close enough to the finish line and kicked it up a gear hoping it I would get enough of a gap to make it to the finish. With 500m to go I felt like I was going to throw up, and I was really starting to pay for the fast early pace. I'm glad the race finished when it did because another 100m and I was going to lose my breakfast.

I finished up 5th in a time of 16:25 which was a :25s  5k road pb. I can't complain about that at all since I have really been focusing on my swim and bike. My knee felt fine during the race, but was a little sore during the cool down. I will probably take it easy for the next week and do a lot of biking. I want it to be 100% for Knoxville and the rest of the summer season.

Suda and I at around the 2.5k mark. Thanks to Brandon from Brandon David photography for taking some excellent pictures at the race today. Check out his website at

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

It is official I am a triathlete not a runner

The triathlon season has finally arrived with my first race now in the books. I will write a race report once I get emailed the official results, but I was first and I believe my time was 1:01:4x. It was an excellent weekend with all of the University of Western triathletes having excellent races and an fun time.

After an excellent result in which I finished approximately 20 minutes faster than I did last year I have decided there is no more messing around and I am 100% triathlete. This means that come September I will not be trying out for the University of Western Cross-country team unless something drastically changes. I was looking forward to running with this excellent group of guys again in the fall, but there were a couple things that just did not sit well with me about the coaches and their philosophies. They should have an excellent year with 6 of their top 7 runners returning.

With the UMS championships over all my energy will be focused towards preparing for Knoxville which is about a month away. Wow time flies and thank god it is starting to feel like summer. This means that I will be biking as many hills as southern Ontario allows. The next couple weeks of running will see a small cut in mileage as I cut my long run back a bit to freshen up the legs for hard intervals during the week. I will probably do a couple track sessions with some 400s to get the legs moving quick.

I am off to write my first of five exams and I will write an official race report once I get the results.


Wednesday, April 6, 2011

New Shoes, Injury, and Spring Fling

I'll start with the new shoes. So I picked up a pair of the Bont sub-9 tri shoes last weekend and I am really pumped to race in them. They are custom heat moldable to an extent and this is supposed to help with comfort and the stiff carbon fiber soles are supposed to increase power transfer. After a week of riding I really enjoy the shoes and they are super fast to slip on and off for transitions. However, a warning to anyone that purchases them, do not try to ride in them with shoe covers. The shoe horn in the back will be pressed into your calf by the shoe cover and caused me to develop blisters just above each of my Achilles. 

Now for the injury part. Being so pumped to ride in my new shoes i quickly screwed on the cleats and hoped on the bike not even thinking to make sure everything was right. I'm not quite sure what I was thinking when I put the cleats on but they weren't even close to being in the right position. This caused added strain to be placed on one of the tendons on the outside of the knee leading to a bit of inflammation. I made it 8 minutes into Sunday's long run before calling her quits and walking home. I have since fixed the cleats and had no problem doing Monday's bike workout, but Tuesday's run was a bit sore from 30 minutes on. I have decided to take Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday off to make sure it is better before I attempt to run or bike again.

This might not be to bad since the UMS Championships/Queen's Spring Fling are this weekend and this will allow me to be recovered and ready to hammer when previously I was just going to train through the race. Hopefully my knee will hold up, and I can be back to scheduled training next week as Rev 3 Knoxville is quickly approaching.

Friday, April 1, 2011


I am finally on twitter and you can follow me at alex_tri_winning. Maybe this will be a way to get more followers on my blog. My goal is to get more people following me then the number of people I am following. This is going to be very difficult, but maybe I can just make outrageous and dumb tweets until I get people attention.

Training has been going well starting to cut back the mileage and up the intensity as I get ready for Rev3 Knoxville. There is just over one week to Spring Fling which is the first "tri" of the year even though it has a pool swim. I have been feeling pretty good so hopefully it goes well. Repeated my 10k TT this week and was 30 seconds slower than what I did in January. I'm not to worried about it because I negative split it and my second half was slightly faster than the second half of the previous time.

I wish I had something better to talk about then training so I'm going to do some blog brainstorming after I finish my last essay.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

The base is built now lets finish the house

Today was my final day of base building and I have to say overall it went well. Missed a couple workouts here and there but I would say about 90% of workouts were completed and most pace times were hit. My swims times are a million times faster than they were before, I'm feeling strong on the bike and will do the 10k tt next week to see how I have improved, and my run workouts just keep getting faster. Next up I will be increasing the intensity and hammering workouts as I start to get ready for Knoxville on May 15th. I have two races between now and then (Queen's Spring Fling and the Downtown 5k). Can't wait to start hammering some hard workouts.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Splash and slip

So its my second race in as many weeks and it feels good to finally throw down. This weekend was Western's Splash and Dash but it turned more into the splash and slip as we got about 4 inches of snow the night before. I wasn't really sure of the best way to warm up for an event that involved so I used Chris's idea of running before then just doing some drills on deck and getting in the water as close to race time as possible. The swim was 1k and I was second out of the water and the only person ahead of me was a relay. I can't really complain about my time, even though I always want to go faster, because last year in the 500m swim I averaged over 2:00/100m and this year I was around 1:30. One thing I still need to work on is counting when I swim, I got out of the pool and started taking my swim cap off only to be told I still have another 100m to go. I quickly dove back in but this threw my rhythm off as well as distracted me mentally. Wasn't sure what to where for this race because the temperature was not to cold but the wind was nippy so I decided to just kick it old school and ran in the speedo with a tri top and arm warmers. It worked well but a lot of people thought I was crazy. This decision gained me quite a bit of time in transition, but I struggled with the new shoes so transitions will be added to the list of things that need to be fine tuned. The run was absolutely terrible!!!! The course consisted of a loop around campus and then an out and back behind the football field x2. The loop around campus wasn't to bad but the out and back behind the football field consisted of knee high snow drifts and large puddles. My shoes weighed probably an extra pound from the water and everyone was slipping and sliding all over the place. Including transition my time was 40 minutes and changed. I would be interested to see what it would have been like without the transition and in better conditions. Unfortunately, I got caught with about a mile to go and once we hit the deep snow I just couldn't hang on and ended up second in the vet guys race. Overall can't really complain when I look at my results from last year, but you always want to go faster. Next race will be the second weekend of April in Kingston. This will be the first race with a bike segment so can't wait for that. Possibly a 5k in between but we will see how the training is coming along. Thanks Rachel for organizing the race it went as smooth as a race can go. Peace Everyone  

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

This guy is a bamf

Yuki Kawauchi is a straight up bamf. He came third in the Tokyo Marathon as an amateur in a time of 2:08:37 and in 5 of the 6 marathons he has run he wound up finishing in the medical tent. The definition of HTFU and going for the win. you can read about the race here

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Spring Break and Really Chilly 5K

Spring Break
Why do they even bother calling it spring break when it is still winter. I think we should get another break once it is spring so we can actually get some quality sbr in. Luckily I got to go down to Tennessee for a couple days and get some really good running in. It was nice that the break fell at the same time as a "recovery" week for me so I didn't have to try to cram three workouts in everyday. My average day was usually a run in the morning and then spending the afternoon travelling to various bike shops and running stores trying to find some good deals. I ended up getting a couple new bathing suits, racing flats, training shoes, a cycling jersey, and a new bike computer. The first day there I did a 90 minute run on the back roads and there was not a single flat spot during the entire thing. I think it took the whole week to fully recover from that run.

Really Chilly 5k
Today was my first real test of fitness at the Really Chilly 5k. I ran 17:01 which is the fastest open 5k I have run since grade 11 and only 9 seconds of my 5k pb. Definitely can't complain about that result when it was like running through a giant puddle the entire race. I have only been running 3 days a week so I wasn't really sure what my run fitness would be like so I went out with the main group (one guy just took off straight from the gun and ran a 15:38 didn't even have a chance of going with him since some little kids decided to sprint off the start and box me in). I was in a group with maybe 4 guys from London Runner so I just tucked in and let them do the work for the first 2k but I was feeling pretty good and put in a little surge to see how everyone legs were feeling. They came with me so after about 100m I turned off the gas and sat back in the group. At the 3k mark I made my move knowing that I had to break the group up or I had no chance of coming second so I put my head down and hammered for about 500m and no one came with me. At this point I just did not want to look back and kept the legs turning. I was able to break them and finish second which is great for this early in the season. Felt extremely well and wished I would have tried to go with the winner even if I would have blown up. Splash and dash is this weekend so the 10k should be interesting.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Happy Belated Valentine's Day

Happy belated Valentine's day to everyone but if you are like me it was just another day hammering away in the cold. I'm alright with that though since triathlon is my one love and yesterday I did all three what can be better. Started out with a solid swim set in the morning that I completely butchered and I don't think I did a single things right. Swim workouts just get so much more complicated then run workouts when there are four strokes, a million drills, etc and they all have abbreviations. The main set was supposed to be 5x500 but I ended up doing 4x400 and one 500 but I still did the same amount of "hard" swimming so I wasn't going to beat myself up over a couple hundred meters of easy swimming. My swimming is coming along, but I still don't have the strength needed to swim as fast as I would like. A 40s 50 is easy for my cardio system but my arms just can't pull me any faster. In the evening I spent some quality time with my girlfriend (bike). Started off with a 20 minute warmup then did 20 minutes hard, 5 easy, 5 hard, 5 easy, 10 hard, 1:30 easy, 30 hard, 1:00 easy, :30 hard, 1:00 easy, :30 hard, 20 easy. Felt strong throughout the whole thing and really I just can't wait to get outside. I followed this with a 15 minute run where I did a 30 second acceleration every 2:30. My running is really coming around for the amount of running I am doing, but we will see what kind of shape I am in come the 27th when I do my first race of the year (Really Chilly 5k). Hoping for a sub 17 but it will probably depend a lot on the weather.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Christopher McDougall: Are we born to run? | Video on

Christopher McDougall: Are we born to run? | Video on

So I came across this video on today. Not much new to anyone who has been following running the last couple years and witnessed the trend of barefoot/minimalist running. I have heard people that are in love with the whole barefoot thing and others that absolutely hate it, but this is my take on it. If you are in shape and have decent running mechanics you can get away with doing a couple miles a week barefoot on grass. As you spend more of your running time on the hard concrete you are going to need more shoe up to a point. Thousands of years ago our ancestors didn't need running shoes because everything was grass and dirt, the first asphalt road wasn't until 1824. To compact the hard surfaces obesity is an ever growing problem and this extra weight is extremely hard on the bodies. If an overweight person were to run barefoot for a couple miles and not die of a heart attack I think there knees would collapse. This is why I believe a shoe is a needed device to prevent injury and allow you to keep running. If bare foot running is getting more people to run then I am happy, but we will see what happens over the next couple years to the minimalist movement.

As an aside I did my first "hard" run since my Achilles problems in December. I did a 20 minute tempo and did about 5.4k. Not the fastest tempo by any means, but I am taking it as a good note because the only pain was in my calves running up the hill on Viscount Rd. There was still some snow on some of the smaller roads and bits of sidewalk I had to run on and it definitely slows you down a little. I can't wait for the race season to get here. I am hoping for a couple pbs in the 5k and 10k as well as triathlon.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Local Hero

Last week after getting bored on the trainer I decided I would download the new sufferfest video, Local Hero. Tonight was the first time I did it and boy did it kick my ass. I was expecting it to be the cycling version of a lame workout video, and it would not be the hard. Boy was I wrong, TT with spartacus and out sprinting Thor are not easy things. You warm up with an easy cyclocross race then go to a crit where you have to do a couple accelerations to grab wheels etc, but then the real workout starts where you do 3x6minutes time trialing with Porte (easier), Millar (medium), and Cancellara. (hard). The six minutes are broken into 1 minute (7/10 100 rpm), 1 minute (7.5 100), 2 minutes (8 100+) and then back down. These kicked my ass and put the legs in the hurt zone for the rest of the video. Next, I had to do the road race which was broken into I think 5 3 minute laps with 2 minutes rest in between (I don't remember exact number of laps because the brain was fried after the tt). These laps consisted of high cadence hard stuff as well as some low cadence climbing. After doing hard 6 minuters these did not feel as hard, but I was still hammering. To finish it up you have to sprint for the win but this is not your typical 30 second sprint for the finish it last 2 minutes (build the first minute, harder for 35 seconds, then sprint with everything you have for the last 25 seconds). After the sprint I thought I was finished and had no more gas in the tank, luckily for me they decided to have a couple more sprints after. These ones were terrible and I my legs didn't want to turn the cranks anymore.

If anyone is looking for a longer, hard workout I would definitely suggest downloading Local Hero. It has been 2 hours since I completed the workout and my legs are still sore. Then again if you have troubles really pushing yourself this video may or may not work for you being that everything is perceived effort and if you want to get the most out of it you really have to push yourself.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Can't Sleep

So I have started another recovery week since they say to take an easy week every couple weeks to keep motivation high and prevent over training. Its only day two and I feel ready to hammer so I'm thinking of throwing down tomorrow during my scheduled bike. However, I hate recovery weeks. I try to cut back on how much I eat since I'm not burning as much, but this just makes me hungry 24/7. Also, I can't sleep. I don't know if I just have excess energy or what but I struggle to fall asleep at nine which then makes it hard to get up at 5 to go do an "easy" swim. O well only a couple more days till I get to hammer for another three weeks.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Tour Down Under

Yesterday was the final stage in the tour down under and marks the end of Lance Armstrong's cycling career . . .  possibly. We all know he is similar to Brett Farve and Michael Jordan with their god complexes and they never seem to actually leave, although I hear Farve has also finally retired. Congrats to Garmin-Cervelo and Cameron Meyer for holding on for the win, to bad it was all over shadowed by Lance and his drug allegations. Every site I visited this week was being blown up about Lance Armstrong and if he used drugs or not so here is what I believe. I believe Lance Armstrong did use drugs, but can you really blame anyone in the pro peleton for using them? Most of these guys have been cycling all their lives starting their pro careers in their late teens early twenties and being amateurs before that, from the cyclists I have talked to this requires about 4 hours a day or 28 hours a week of riding and this doesn't include all the time for travelling, stretching, massage, etc. This does not leave much time for getting an education or having a career other than cycling. However cycling is not as main stream as sports like basketball, football, etc. where they can afford to pay you a million dollars to sit on the bench. The money in cycling comes from winning and endorsements (that come from winning). When you are in a profession where everyone cheats, 5 of the last 6 Tour de France winners have tested positive, admitted to doping, or are currently waiting to hear (Alberto Contador), its hard to believe he is clean. This is the only thing I will write on the subject because I really don't care. I watch cycling with the view that they are all doping and that is just the way it is. I hope for lance's sake and his cancer foundation that nothing comes of the investigation, but if it does i'm sure cancer will have a new poster boy soon enough.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Its been awhile

So it been a while since I have posted anything on here, but there hasn't been to much interesting going on. My training schedule is now set and I am swimming with the masters group on Monday, Wednesday, and Fridays. My swimming is finally starting to come along nicely. This morning was an easy swim with the tri club and we had to do 5x200 (kick the 1st 100 swim the 2nd) and the swim was supposed to start fast and get slower. The first was 1:26 and the second was 1:25 and it felt super easy. The cycling has been going well I am now doing my long rides at Forest City Velodrome just to break up long trainer rides. I am also doing there skills and drills on Monday nights to get more "comfortable" on the track and eventually get my track 2. Running has been pretty much non existent. Birthday weekend really killed my running last week but this week it will pick up. Ran an easy 12.6k yesterday in an hour and felt good, I plan on doing a harder tempo on Friday so we will see how that goes.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Training Schedule

So the last week I have been spending more time making a training plan than actually training. Next year I am going to have to look into getting a coach because everyone you talk to and everything I read online is different from that. Do I want to do less is more? more is more? core, no core? long slow base? hammer everything? mix everything together? I've decide I'm just going to go hard and see what happens. Its going to my first season of being a "triathlete" and I believe the best way to find your limit is to go past it (doesn't always work nicely at first but I have bounced back from some bad ones . . . red feather grade 11 cough cough). I guess this is kind of the front runner in me where I would rather go out hard blow up and no I gave everything than not go hard enough and wonder what if. I'm still young and if I blow up this year I still have next year and plenty of years after that. It takes 10 years to reach your peak so I think that gives me 5 years to experiment and find what works for me and then another 5 to hammer. That will bring me to 31 and if you look at most triathletes especially long course this is prime time. I will be making the final training plan this week.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Computrainer Round 2

I killed that shit. I don't know what I was doing the first time I was on there, but it definitely wasn't cycling. This time I was 2 minutes faster and averaged 50 more watts. Time for the 10k was 17:04 which I was pretty happy with since its only the beginning of January. My left leg was still only doing about 48% of the work so I need to work on that a bit and my pedaling efficiency went down a bit. I'm going to keep hammering out some trainer rides and hopefully everything will improve when I decide to throw down again.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Back In The Swing of Things

So school has started up again and with that so does phase 2 of my base building. Similar to phase 1 with swimming 6 days, biking 3, running 3 and one day where I do a bike focused brick. I think my swimming needed the break because in the pool the last couple times I have seen a big jump in my performance. Swimming with faster people has also help with that. Hopefully I can keep improving and get down close to 1:20s. Do develop some more power I bought some larger paddles as an early birthday present. Today was the first workout with them, and it is definitely a lot harder on the shoulders. Over the break I kind of got used to the warm weather when I was able to run in shorts one day and all the snow melted allowing for one outdoor bike. Tomorrow I am doing the 10k tt on the computrainer at multisport zone so we will see if the last 4 weeks on the trainer have helped.