Luis Blog
Friday, January 15, 2010

Random Thoughts

Posted 12:00 AM, January 15 2010

Random ThoughtsScale

My goal this spring is to do the Boulder Bolder 10K road race. Well not just do it, but do it in a time that I can be proud of. Back in my early 30s I used to consistently get on the top 10 of my age category. My 10K PR is 36:12 on that course. In a race this size the categories are actually single age. That means my competition will be all 49 year olds in 2010. Looking at the results from prior years that means running a 10K under 41 minutes. Piece of cake right? Well not so fast when my weight right now is 199 pounds. I figured I need to get down to 185 maybe under 180 to realistically be able to run 41 minutes and then I need some good training. I think my body is very cardiovascular fit, and I think if I lose the pounds and do some speed work I can do it. We will see. I am sure my friend Kevin is shaking his head. No way.

Weight, oh yes. When I was a little boy they used to call me gordito. Not the Gordo as my friend Gordo Byrn (whose real name is really Gordon, I think) . Gordo actually means fat in Spanish, but in Latin America many people are referred to as gordito where the 'ito' is a diminutive and it's actually an endearing way of calling someone. Imagine calling your friend with a few pounds hey little fatty? Ha! Well the way our society is gaining weight there will be many gorditos soon. But back to my story eh? I had always had extra pounds so I am somewhat ok with it. But only by getting lean can I actually compete well. So lose weight I must to compete.

In my 20s and 30s all I did was basically train and the weight came off. Then in 2006 when I did Kona in 11:20 it did not work as well. I did most of the training but only got down to 195 pounds. The result in Kona was 11:20 so that is 1:50 from my personal best. Ok I am older so that has to be taken into the equation. But I am going to attribute at least an hour to the extra weight. Imagine carrying a 20 pound dumbbell for 140.6 miles. I think it will slow you down.

I remember back in 93 I trained with a Japanese friend Masahico. He is now a running coach. He was a pro duathlete and raced age group triathlon. We rode to Estes Park which is riding up a mountain. It will take all my effort to keep up. We got back to my house and I said "Masa do me a favor, stand on this scale for me." He tipped the scale at 120 pounds. That it's so unfair!

Well the only way the weight is going to come off is by eating less and counting calories. So that is what I am doing. Got back on for some extra help. It's a great web site for this as it has most foods and calculates it all for you. It sure helps me.

It's actually really exciting to me at the moment to get back in shape. My wife is training for a half marathon and she is very excited as well so we are feeding off each other. Support from loved one is very important. It will be fun to take the kids to watch mom race.

After the 10K I want to do a half Ironman. This will work well in late fall but have not decided on which one. The race director from Miami 70.3 emailed me and wanted to work with us as far as helping his racers train etc. So for a while I thought I could do his race and go help the athletes there with some pre race talks etc. But I have not heard from them. They must be too busy now that the race is sold out. So I still have not decided what half to do.

In the pool I am still getting my workouts in. I enjoy swimming and although I am not in great shape there, I still have fun with it and I feel fitter every month. Today Wes gave is this set were we did 3x100 on an interval but then you did another 3 right after on 5 seconds less. He wanted us to keep going until you can not make it at all. We started with 3x100 on 1:40. I am not a fan of this sort of set because its open ended. I like a finish line. But I see the benefit of an open ended set. It's just not me however. I decided even before that I was just stopping at 3x100 on 1:20 and that is what I did. Made then with plenty of time but gave it all I had on that last one. Good enough for now. I need to get ready for the 1 hour postal swim on Jan 30th so we also did an 800 straight. That felt good.

On the bike, I am excited to start that, but I have been a little lazy. But I am looking forward to Ride the Rockies (400 to 500 mile ride in a week) and to my training camps were we will ride quite a bit up mountains. The key there will be losing that weight. I got to do it. Maybe I will tweet my weight every day. You think that will motivate me to really stick to the calorie count?

Maybe you know or maybe you don't. I am coaching a masters swimming class for triathlon at RallySport every Tuesday and Thursday at 1:00 PM. We had lots of fun Thursday. I am waiting for this one guy that I swim with to come by to see if I can get him to slow down and last the whole workout. This one guy is a fast swimmer but he loves to go all out and when he burns out, he is gone. The question is how long he will stay in for. Will that be 30 minutes, 40 minutes? Whatever it is he is out of the pool and to the showers. That has to hurt is my thinking. There is no way I like doing that.

On the online coaching front. It's time to pick our Elite team. That will be exciting. I just browsed a little and we have some new fast people for sure. But I have to put it all down on a spreadsheet and draw the line. If you applied I wish you luck with it. We only have 40 spots as that is all our sponsors are willing to support. There are a few teams out there from other organizations that offer good opportunities to fast age groupers. Some of our faster people find very attractive so we always lose a few people to that. But that is good. I am glad for them. Some people always ask us how come they have to pay to be on our team. Good question. Let me explain.

For some years we did not have a team and people out there were doing really well under our guidance but no one knew. So we decided to get some sponsors and get them uniforms so that if they wanted to represent us we could help them. Then we decided to ask people to apply for the team and set a deadline and advertised it. However we did not want to attract athletes that were to apply for the team just to get all the free stuff and wear our uniforms in return. We wanted to attract athletes that wanted to be coached first and then if they were fast also we could put them on the team. So the only way to do this was to still charge a fee for the coaching. The last thing I want is someone that wins but does not utilize our training and coaching. Our athletes get asked all the time about us. So how can they answer correctly if they are no following the plan and not using the web site. I do not want a gimmicky team.

Some guy on the slowtwitch web site forum posted something that the reason we have so many people in Kona is because we recruit fast people. He even twisted something 'he says I said' and mentioned my name in the post to make his point. How far from the truth is that. We do not recruit. Recruiting In the triathlon coaching business does not work in my opinion. You can advertise but if you recruit and have to twist arms you basically are asking for trouble as a coach. You need an athlete's trust and attention. You need this because he/she needs to do what you are asking them to do. If you recruit and pay them or have too many incentives the whole coach/athlete relationship is lost.

As much as I like to reply to the garbage some people post on Slowtwitch I do not. This is because a forum like Slowtwitch anyone with good forum skills can just eat you alive and as I have always said. That forum is just entertainment. There are some valuable information here and there but its buyer beware. You get what you paid for. It's very funny because some people in there have actually made careers from posting on it and selling themselves and their beliefs, products or whatever. Then one day they get burned by some astute guy and they are out. Here today, gone tomorrow. We have our forum and anyone is free to post on it. No purchased required. They just need a login which is free.

My last random thought is about the Boulder Kids Triathlon. That event usually has a wave of kids as young as 3. My kids are ready to do one and I told them they can do this one. But the Boulder Kids Triathlon is an IronKids event now and that its only for kids 6+. I sent a message to Ironman but have not heard if they will keep the little ones event. My son is very excited but we may have to go find another event. These events have insurance and I am sure the insurance may say that they only cover kids of a certain age. Oh well.

Happy Training!

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