Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Last Weekend in August 2007

Miles to go. For the photoset, click here.

Track tonight hurt. Yeow, this is what happens when I do hard long bike rides on Saturday followed by hard runs on Sunday. Typical training weekend if I'm training for both a triathlon and an ultra. Feels like Spring when I was training both for the Wildflower Half and the Bighorn 100. I'd come into track on Tuesday nights slow, sore and tired. There was one night that I started breathing funny, a gasping sound like a dying animal. I have to figure something out for next year since I'm not totally eliminating tri races from the schedule. The year before I split the race season in three parts; ultra>tri>ultra. The years before I didn't do track. More tinkering with the training as usual.

So Saturday I went for a long bike ride, long in relation to a half-ironman distance triathlon. I'm signed up to participate in the Big Kahuna Triathlon the first week of September. It's a half-ironman distance, meaning a 56-mile ride (90km). It should be a fun, relaxed, training race for me. I'm not in the triathlon shape that I was for Wildflower. I do one or two triathlons to keep up with my tri community. I'm really a runner masquerading as a triathlete. I had three opportunities to train with other folks but I bagged on all of them so I can sleep in. Yea, ya read right. Sound so blasphemous:) I didn't get going till 10AM...okay 10:15. I had a 50 mile, 4 hourish ride in the plan. On the first hour I achieved nothing but a warm up. It takes awhile to get out of the city but I also ran into two friends. First I finally met Steve, a fellow blogger, race walking back from the bridge. Next I meet up with Lem, a budding ultra runner who was having problems with his IT band, much like Steve. He was out training in Sausalito having run there from SF. I chatted with Lem for awhile, he had a lot of questions and I had some advice. I suffer from chronic IT problems myself, a problem I developed in my marathon days. Before I finally left I counseled that if the pain doesn't go away soon he should consider bailing on the Firetrails 50M. A first attempt at the 50-miler with IT problems was just a recipe for a DNF or a sufferfest. Besides who knows what kind of other injuries he would incur when his body compensates for the bad IT. He's compensating now and he knows it.

With Steve, fellow blogger. With Mari and Coach Neil.

The next hour I was able to get some work done but then I ran into Coach Neil and his training group. All around good guy, he runs the beginner and mid-level triathlon groups at our club. I even volunteer for some of his groups. So...yes I stopped and chatted again and to compensate I added yet another hour to my workout. Finally after that I was able to get back to work. I was going back and forth on Paradise Drive, a curvy, rolling, narrow asphalt road that offers great views of the bay and has very light traffic. Part of the way I ran into Cheyenne and Tina and I rode a few miles with them. The company helped and it's not the first time they've kept me company on a long solo ride, curiously the last time was on the same road. It was meant to be. By 1:30 everyone I knew had finished their workout and was either back or heading back to the city. Cheyenne and T rode back to the city as well and It was all solo miles from here on out. On the way home I stopped at Rodeo Beach. It's my favorite beach in the city. It's clean, well maintained and well used. You've got the hikers, the surfers, the picnickers, the runners all in one spot. There's bathrooms, a shower and working water fountains if you need them. Rodeo Beach is the start of my last big 100 - Headlands Hundred. It's the start of the highly competitive Marin Headlands 50k (my first ultra) and the Miwok 100k (last year I had my best ultra race at this event).

My 50-mile ride became an 81 mile ride. It wasn't a hard ride but it was a good ride. I've been off my bike for a couple of weeks because of the Headlands Hundred and I've been feeling a little apprehensive about my lack of miles on the bike. Also I recently signed up to be a Bike Marshall for an upcoming Multiple Sclerosis ride at the end of September. Two days; day one is 80-miles, day two is 75-miles. I feel pretty confident now that I can fulfill those duties, at least not fall off the pack. The ride helped me mentally more than it did physically. Okay these events are doable. Unfortunately I took longer than I thought and as soon as I got home I only had enough time to eat and clean up before heading out to my friend Chuck's 40th b-day party.

With Cheyenne and Tina on Paradise Drive.

On Sunday I decided on a 3 to 4 hour run. Slept in again:) and left the house at 11AM. I anticipated dead legs but ran well. Ended up running 1:50 to the turnaround point in the Marin Headlands 10 miles out and for the return I decided to haul it back for a negative split. I strived for LT (Lactate Threshold.) Hitting my max heart rate on the way back was not hard on the uphills but it was difficult on the flats. I had to run a whole lot faster to keep the heart rate up on the flats. Definitely felt the wear on my legs from the bike here. I was mostly successful. There were some downhill sections where I had to go easy due to the techical nature of the terrain but soon as it leveled out or climbed I kept my foot in the gas. From the Golden Gate Bridge on I was haulin'. The bridge is a pain, all concrete, loud traffic and crowded with people. I ran the span on a sub-7 minute mile which for me is not bad. Two miles from my apartment, back in the heart of the city with the sidewalks and lights I ended the hard effort. Used the last two miles as a cool down. Made it back to my place in 1:31. Shucks should have just kept on pushing. My legs stiffened up quickly after I stopped running, a good sign that they got a good workout. Just an overall pain and stiffness from hard effort, nothing indicating injury.

Almost home, another 4.5 miles. From the open air to the urban jungle.

So far so good.


  1. what's that again? a runner masquerading as a triathlete? :) but you are intense, man! doing the long ride and the 3 hour run back to back! i wonder which one you find more fun and exciting - the ultra or the tri?

  2. I'm with you on the tri/ultra combination - they're both wonderful, but hard to balance. I'm definitely going to cut back on the tris once I step up to 100M ultras.

  3. Wow, you got in some really good riding, and really good running. You are a machine, Rick! Nice going, and good luck with the Big Kahuna.

    Great pictures, as always. That Pacific Coast and Bay Area is spectacular.

  4. caloyb - they're both fun. I prefer to race ultras but the tri community here is phenomenal and I enjoy doing tri's with them as well. At a 100-mile race last year, 3 friends from the tri group came out to pace and crew for me.

  5. I'm back again. I don't know if there's a limit on the mp3 thing. It still works OK for me.

  6. Hey, Rick, did you take that front wheel shot?--pretty cool. My calves still hurt so I'm only biking still (commuting mainly). Running still rules, right?

  7. All for the run Mark, always for the run. Hope those calves get better soon. Yup, took that shot - thanks.

  8. That was a mighty fast split, you man! I don't remember my last sub-7...like last year? Good effort, keep the wheels turning in all directions. Luckily for me, mo hip hurts still and I am not about to jump into Teton races - you know I would have had I had any less pain:) but no, hurts, b$%#. Out tomorrow, no internet 4 days (!! - Bobbie is not taking his laptop, can you believe it?). Be good.

  9. Tri-people are such well-balanced athletes! I'm sure it makes you a better runner overall.

  10. wow...you're awesome! I can't even imagine doing a ride like that (well, considering my longest 'ride' in 3 years was 12 miles at a 9 min/mile pace, I can't necessarily imagining 'riding' anything significant at all :P) but still, you're amazing! And then to do a run like that the next day is awesome.

    Looked like yet another gorgeous day at the bay :)

  11. Wow. Nothing but an overall pain from the hard effort eh? Hope you treated yourself to a good massage after or at least some great food. No more crab cakes please...I'm allergic to shrimp and crabs too. :)