Tuesday, April 29, 2008

So can someone tell me why it is that old ladies go to the pool at 5AM? I'm in Ogden, UT for RSRM camp and found a pool about 15 minutes from my pool which appears to be the only option close by. Unfortunately, its about 88 degrees and for some reason is packed with old ladies at 5 in the morning! Why do these ladies feel the need to use the pool at 5AM?? They clearly dont have anything else to all day, so why not do your water aerobics at a more reasonable time?? Oh well, enough bitching about old laides...

Other than that Ogden is a pretty nice place. Last night I ate a place, Peleton, which was a pretty cool deli next to the LBS. Ogden is also a college town. 10 points to anyone who can name te school located in Ogden. Hint: think NCAA basketball.

Monday, April 28, 2008


S: 22700 yds
B: 10h 24min (TSS = 630)
R: 4h 58min

Total: 21h 3min

The week started with soreness from Collegiate Nationals and a sore throat. However even with being a little sick I was still able to get all the work done so that was good. Luckily I was starting to feel better by the end of the week and I think I'm pretty much over it now which I'm really glad about. There is nothing worse than a cold that lingers for a few weeks...

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Nothing like racing to the airport only to find your plane delayed. So now I'm hanging out at Huntsville International awaiting my flight to Salt Lake City through, guess where, Atlanta! I cant really say I'm looking foward to the Atlanta to Salt Lake leg as I'm pretty sore from long ride + run this morning.

This week I'll be out in Ogden, UT, just north of Salt Lake City, for (dork alert!) RSRM (Reuseable Solid Rocket Motor) class. We get lectured for the three and a half days and then Thursday afternoon we get to watch them light one of the rockets up. At least that part will be fun... Obviously I wont be able to bike while I'm there but hopefully I'll still have some time to swim and run.

Well, time to board!

Saturday, April 26, 2008

I got a postcard today from my sister, Katie, who is currently in Taiwan reaching English on a Fullbright Scholarship. On the postcard was a picture of an old house with a Giant sign out front and sure enough the postcard was actually made by Giant. Of course she thought of me because the postcard had a bike on it but the funny part was what she wrote, "Someone said a lot of Giant stuff is made here... Think the name is compensation?" What a comedian she is.

My immediate thought however was, "Well, yes, a LOT of Giant bikes are made there, in addition to MOST other high and entry level bikes." Not mine though. While Trek does make some bikes overseas, they are one of the few companies that still makes bikes here in the USA. Cool stuff.

Friday, April 25, 2008

A nice evening in Alabama (or "Redneck Alert" according to Paulo)

After a few light days of training after the race things are more or less back to full swing. However, I did manage to get out and see the Huntsville Stars take on the Jacksonville Sun last night after the bike ride. The weather here has been really nice lately, especially in the evenings, so what better way to enjoy it than with some minor league baseball? Thursday nights are "Thristy Thursdays" at Joe Davis Stadium which means beers and sodas are only $1. With a $7 admission price, you can't really beat it so last night I finally made it out to one of the games with a few friends and it was quite enjoyable. We drank our share of dollar beers, sucked on some boiled peanuts, enjoyed the weather and were even treated to a victory for the home team. Not a bad way to spend a Thursday evening. Of course I did have to miss The Office, but luckily episodes are online at nbc.com which makes it easy to keep up with missed episodes.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008


"...the only thing on my mind, when I go to sleep, when I wake up, at the gym with the guys, is to dominate.'' -Dwight Howard from this article on SI.com. The article is nothing special, just a recap of the Magic's Game 2 victory of the Toronto Raptors. However, the quote is AWESOME. Of course it helps that Dwight Howard is the man but it is great that someone that young has no problem putting the pressure on himself to perform. Some may see it as cocky but I see it more as self confidence and responsibility as he knows that he has to play well for the Magic to move on in the postseason.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Collegiate Nationals Race Report, Pt 4

Saturday, post race

So after the race Saturday we had a lot of fun hanging out in Tuscaloosa. First off all, the post-race food was catered by Moes which was a huge improvement compared to the usual spread of banannas and stale bagels you find at the end of races. While it certainly isnt Chipotle, you sure cant beat a huge burrito, chips, and a couple of cookies for a post race meal. So after enjoying that and chatting with people as they were finishing, we took moved our stuff out of transition and headed back down to watch the women's Olympic Trials.

Because this was such a big event, there were even some big-shot AGers in the crowd. Here is a me with the unbeatable Marc Bonnet-Emyard and "First-out-of-the-water" Bruce Gennari. Needless to say, I'm the slowest swimmer of the group...

After watching the start of the women's race, Ashish and I decided it was time for a 'B' double 'E' double 'R' 'U' N' to Publix. However, on our way we got a little distracted and had to stop in at Coldstone. While we were there we happened to run into Brooks and the some of the other members of the Miami (Ohio) University triathlon team. Unfortunately, Ashish did a crap job on this picture, but you get the idea. FYI, I had the Peanut Butter Cup Perfection. It was particularly pleasing.

So with our ice cream and beer, it was back to the race start to see the men off.

The men's race was super exciting and if you didnt catch it, check out the transcript of the coverage on Slowtwitch. I was admittedly really surprised Matt held off Hunter and Andy. Major props to him; he had a helluva race and it was cool to see him totally stoaked at the finish. Here is Matt on the run:

Hunter and Andy:

After the races we headed back to the hotel for a quick shower and then it was off to the awards. The banquet was a bit shorter this year as they didnt serve dinner there but it was still nice and rowdy as the announcers decided to let crowd noise determine the "spirit" award.

Because there was no dinner, we were off to... you guessed it, Chipotle. Kevin decided to join us and then Steve Sexton showed up while we were there. Thats right, the top 3 overall all dining at Chipotle. That should tell you something, shouldnt it??

After dinner, it was time for ice cream #2 of the day (brownie ala mode w/ chocolate sauce this time) from Chick-Fil-A:

Then parties in a few different hotel rooms, culminating with Stanford:

Finally, one last shot of the UVA crew on Sunday morning...

All in all it was a fun weekend. The weather couldnt have been any better but of course it was the friends that really made it fun.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Collegiate Nationals Race Report (Pt 3)

The Race aka Saturday Pt. 1

Saturday morning we arrived nice and early and I had no problems racking the bike or getting set up. I felt good on the run warm up and was looking forward to a good race. Once we were finally allowed in the water I got in a little swim and immediately noticed that for the large majority of the race we would be swimming straight into the sun. Not too much fun, but what can you do?

Finally the gun went off and we were off. Apart from the typical jostling, I actually got off to a pretty good start. I usually get beat up pretty bad at Collegiate Nationals (what do you expect with a bunch of testosterone laden competitive college kids?) but this time it actually wasn't too bad. So pretty soon things strung out and I found myself in a nice little group. I was pretty sure that the first place guy wasn't too far ahead, so I was content to find some feet and try to keep pace. As it turns out I was out of the water in 8th or so, about 40 seconds back. So a decent swim. At this point, I was feeling pretty good and thought I had a shot at it.

Off to the bike which for me usually means people passing me and me screaming obscenities under my breath directed towards my bike. This time however this was not the case. I started out by actually passing (!) a couple of guys who mustve just been fast swimmers and after 7 or 8 miles I found myself in a group with 3 other guys. We all took turns heading to the front and trying to separate ourselves but we ended up staying together the whole time. While we did end up staying more or less together, there were numerous officials out there and they stopped on multiple occasions to make sure we were riding cleanly. Coming into the end of the ride I was feeling pretty good as we were 3-7 and I was confident I could outrun everyone in the group, meaning I was looking at no worse than 3rd.

Out on to the run and sure enough, I separated myself within the first half mile from the three others. Marc Bonnet-Emyard was out on the course and gave me splits,

"2 min to 1st, 1 min to 2nd" he screamed.

"1 minute" I thought. "Totally doable."

So I set out to chase down Kevin (the guy in 2nd) even though I had no feeling in my feet due to the cold weather and just overall didnt feel that great. Occasionally I'd catch a glimpse of him while other times he was out of sight. The run course was tough with three pretty serious hills and multiple tight turns but unfortunately when he was in sight I noticed I wasnt really making up any time and I still wasnt feeling that great. With about 3/4 of a mile to go I saw Mark again and he let me know there was no one behind me at which point I realized I wasnt going to catch Kevin so I might as well enjoy the last few minutes of the race. I came into the chute and while I was disappointed to not win, I was still pleased with the result as it looks like the suffering Paulo has put me through on the bike might actually be paying off.

Incidentally, Kevin and I ended up tying for the fastest run, so as I suspected, I wasnt catching him.

So there it is, 3rd overall which as you can see is the first place that doesnt get interviewed. It is however good enough for some Coldstone but that will have to wait for Saturday, part 2...

Collegiate Nationals Race Report (Pt. 2)

Pretty typical pre-race day. We started out with a nice swim in the river after which we got our packets. We then headed to downtown Tuscaloosa for some lunch.

Back at the hotel, the bike the bike was awaiting the its final touches before it was deemed race ready.

That night was the all important pasta dinner. The weather was so nice, I ended up eating outside on the grass with Alisha, Kevin, and Christian.

Finally, here is Rudy making some last minute preparations for the big race the next day. Watch out, ladies...

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Collegiate Nationals Race Report, Pt. 1

I usually think multiple day race reports are pretty silly but in this case it is necessary. Why? Because I need an excuse to post pictures of the deliciousness that is Chipotle.

So after driving down to Tuscaloosa after a long day at the office, I went for a short run with my team. After that it was a quick shower before some goodness. I had been looking foward to this dinner for weeks once I found out Tuscaloosa had a Chipotle. Here we are in line building our feasts:

The salsas are very tasty and the guac is LOADED with avacados:

Chris and BRO enjoying their burritos:

Apparently the burrito rolling employee is new as she couldnt quite get everything in the tortilla and I had to get a bowl to save it. In case you are wondering I went with a burrito with Barbaco, pinto beans, tomato, corn, and green salsas, cheese, guac, and a few shakes of the Chipotle Tabasco sauce with some chips on the side.

Unfortunately that is all I have time for tonight but hopefully I'll get Friday and Saturday finished up tomorrow. I got some great pics of the pasta dinner, Olympic Trials, and post race parties so hopefully I can get those up tomorrow.

Friday, April 18, 2008

I'm hanging out here in Tuscaloosa but unfortunately I forgot my cable for my camera so pics will have to wait until I get home. Anyway, it looks like USAT is doing a pretty good job this year. Checking in was a piece of cake and the city really seems to be getting behind the race. There are "Tuscaloosa Tripalooza" signs up everywhere and they even have a "communication station" set up even though this is the day before the races. I really think it helps to have Olympic Trials and Collegiate Nationals on the same day as it makes it a much bigger event which makes it easier for people who otherwise wouldnt care to at least understand there is something marginally important happening.

Off to the pasta dinner in a bit then hopefully things will go as planned tomorrow...

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Its amazing how little time I end up having on these taper weeks! This evening I'm heading down to Tuscaloosa for the USAT Collegiate National Championship on Saturday so this week has been a bit light in terms of training. Of course when I looked at the schedule at the beginning of the week I thought of all the extra time I'd have. Well that sounds good until I realize I'm leaving Thursday which means I'll have to pack Wednesday and make sure everything is ready with the bike before that... and there goes the week.

It should be a fun weekend down there. It'll be nice to catch up with my friends from UVA and the few people I know from my time at UF. Also, the Olympic Trials will on Saturday after our race so watching that should be a lot of fun, even though there will only be 10 people in the race. Because of that, I'm looking for Big Andy to take off from the gun and try to go at it solo but we'll see what happens.

I'm also super excited about dinner tonight because there is a Chipotle in Tuscaloosa! It will be gloriously delicious. I cant wait.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008


So apparently Jonnyo coined the phrase, "Getting the work done." This has become Paulo's new favorite catch line and it really does emphasize the main ingredient in endurance sports training: consistency. Anytime some asks, "Whats the secret? How do I get better at running/swimming/biking?" I have one simple response: consistency.

So with having been said, I am obviously a fan of the phrase. However, while I jonnyo's proper English just doesn't work as well down here in Alabama. So from now on, rather than "Getting the work done" it will just be (channeling Larry the Cable Guy) "Git-R-Done!!!!!" Ahh yes, much more appropriate...

Monday, April 14, 2008


S: 24,100 yds
B: 210 mi
R: 61 mi

Total: 23h

The week started out pretty well but the ride yesterday was pretty awful. Sure, the wind and cold didnt help but I even felt like crap when I had a tailwind. Its days like these that I really wish I didnt have a powermeter as there is nothing worse than getting home and confirming that the ride sucked. But hey, at least I still put in my 3h on the saddle.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

The last few days have been really nice here in Northern Alabama. Spring is definitely here, highlighted by warm days and the beginning of long, cool evenings. Just awesome weather. So of course its only fitting that I wake up this morning to the following "Special Weather Alert" from the National Weather Service:



Great... just what I was hoping for on my ride today!

In other news, good luck to all the posse members and TIMEX teammates out in Arizona today!

Friday, April 11, 2008

Hey Paulo,
I was going to email you but firgured it would just be easier to post a blog entry. The swim workout yesterday morning was a little slow. I felt OK in the water, but just didnt have the pop on the fast stuff. The couple of days previous were pretty hard though so that may've been part of the reason.

OTOH, the bike workout last night went pretty well. The legs felt good and I didnt have any trouble getting my HR up in Zn4 during the 4x10min intervals. The run afterwards was nothing to write home about but that is to be expected. Anyway, I hope this incredibly direct and quantitative feedback was helpful, especially because I know you'll take it into account when planning the upcoming weeks.

Talk to you later!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Orange Parmesan Vinegarette

I've been trying out some homemade salad dressings and I've found one that I really like. The advantage of making your own dressing is that you can cut out a lot of the added sugars, preservatives, and artificial flavors found in most store bought varieties. On to the recipe!

1 orange
1 shallot (chopped)
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup grated parmesan
1 tbls white wine vinegar

Over a medium sized bowl, zest the orange before squeezing its juice into the bowl. Add remaining ingredients, wisk, and there you have it! A delicious, easy to make salad dressing.

I've been taking some mixed greens and/or romaine and adding grilled chicken, feta cheese, almonds, avacado, sunflower seeds, and chopped red onion for a tasty salad. Enjoy!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Its definitely spring here in Huntsville which is always a welcome sight so at least the landscape on the run last night was enjoyable. The run itself was, well... not quite as nice. Sometimes you just have to be thankful for a spring evening and leave it at that...

Hopefully the legs will feel better this afternoon as I'm planning on duking it out with the local roadies in the "Tuesday Night World Championships." Thats right, there is no beating around the bush here. They just call it what it is which IMHO is the way to go. Anyway, should be fun and with a little luck I'll be able to hold my own ;)

Monday, April 7, 2008


S: 22800yds
B: 218 miles
R: 34 miles

Total: 16h 25min

Not bad for the week after a 70.3. The week started off with some nice easy workouts in the beautiful weather of southern California but by the end it was back to the grind. So after recovering from the race by the middle of the week, I was back to being nice and sore when waking up on Saturday, Sunday, and Monday mornings...

Friday, April 4, 2008

Had a surprisingly good run this evening. Even though it was only 6 days after a 70.3, Paulo decided it was soon to get back into some Zn4 running action. Needless to say I wasn't exactly looking foward to the workout. However, it actually ended up going pretty well. I was hurting a little more than usual but the times were good, so I definitely can't complain. In fact I think this is a really good sign for later in the summer when I'll have 70.3s spaced closely together... that I'll be able to recover quickly for one and be ready for another in a (relatively) short amount of time. This is of course the BIG difference between IMs and 70.3s (unless of course you are a crazy person like Joe Bonness).

Changing subjects.... "For many college students, a new relationship isn't real until it's on Facebook." Stories like this one on CNN totally crack me up as they sound like something from The Onion. If you are on facebook (who isnt?) you should check out the article... its good for a chuckle.

Back to the grind in terms of training. After enjoying a few days of light workouts after the race I had a nice Zn4 swim yesterday morning and a solid Zn3 ride yesterday evening. I actually felt really good on the ride, so it appears I'm recovering pretty well from the race. Incidentally I also just looked at my power file from the race last night for the first time and well... lets just say there isnt much to recover from. I'll just blame the meager average on the derailleur problems. Yep, blaming it on the bike, totally lame excuse....

In other, more exciting news... a new episode of the The Office will be aired next week!! Its been too long and I cant wait. I'm sick of these damn reality show fillers!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

TIMEX Multisport Team camp pictures

Now that the race report is done, I figured its time for some pictures from TIMEX camp!

On Saturday night, Triathlete Magazine hosted a party for the TIMEX and Zoot teams. I got to meet Samantha McGlone!

The next photo is of my table at the team dinner on Sunday evening. From left to right: Kyle Marcotte, Marcel Vifian, Ritchie Cunningham, Luis Alvarez, Adrianna from Timex, me, Mark from Trek, and THE Sergio. Kyle, Sergio, and I were picking Mark's brain all night and he was kind enough to humor us with some firsthand knowledge from the wind tunnel ;)

Next up, here is a shot of me on the run during the race (yes, this is out of order...):

Here Sergio and I are taking a break during a nice relaxing ride down the coast on Monday:

Everyone enjoying breakfast, getting ready for the photo shoot on Monday:

Dinner on Monday night:

Sitting around the fire on the deck of our hotel Monday night after dinner:

Fellow electrochemists sharing a drink:

All in all the trip was a lot of fun. It was a nice break from the grind and great to catch up with old teammates and meet some new ones. Hopefully I'll get to see plenty of them out at the races this year! Also, if you happen to see the trademark orange at a race, make sure to introduce yourself and mention me... everyone is super friendly.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Well after a fun few days out in sunny Southern California, its back to the grind here at the Marshall Space Flight Center. I've got a lot of work to catch up on after having been gone but hopefully I'll get some pics from the trip posted tonight. Of course I also still need to unpack all my crap from camp. This not only includes the bike, but also the plethora of goodies which were distributed. I now have a new wardrobe along with quite a few new bad ass watches. Right now I'm sporting the IRONMAN 75 lap HI-TI which is a really stylish watch. The titanium not only looks good but also is pretty much indestructible!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

California 70.3 Race Report

Sorry for the delay but Timex camp has been keeping my busy. Anyway now that I'm headed home I finally had a bit of time to sit down and bang out a report. First of all I need to thank Mr. and Mrs. Mathios for letting me stay at their place on Thursday and Friday night. They provided a bed and Devin cooked up a couple of awesome meals. Now, on to the race!

The day started with a short drive up I5 to Oceanside. Going through the motions in transition, I felt pretty good and was pleased as the temperature felt surprising warm even though it was in the low 50s. As I was setting my transition area up, I had to make some final decisions regarding what I would wear in the race. The announced water temp was 60 with air temps in mid 50s to low 60s so I decided to ditch the neoprene for the swim and throw on a shirt in T1 for the bike.

Pretty soon we were in the water and more than ready to start. Needless to say, it was cold and I was more than a bit disappointed when the guy singing the national anthem decided to extend the last note wayyyy too long. When he finally finished the cannon fired and we were underway. After getting beat up more than usual and swallowing a few mouthfuls of the Pacific Ocean, a little pack formed with about 10 or so athletes. I was feeling good and couldn’t really get out of it so I just decided to go with the flow. I had no idea what group I was in, but I couldn’t really get out of it, so that was that.

The rest of the swim was reatively uneventful and while running out of the water I noticed Craig Alexander right in front of me, so I figured the swim had gone pretty well. When I got to my bike I started screwing around with the shirt I was going to put on which was really frustrating. I hadn’t tried that before but I found out pretty quickly that trying to put on a tight shirt when you are all wet isn’t exactly the easiest thing to do. So I finally got that on and after having a bunch of people pass me, I was out on the ride.

Right away I was feeling really good and riding with a couple other athletes. Then about 7 miles into the ride I hit a huge bump and out went BOTH my bottles. AWESOME. A few miles later as I was shifting to go up a short, steep hill, my rear derailleur decided to stop working. This sucked. I lost the guys I was riding with and had to push a big gear up the remaining hills. Considering the fact that I can leg press about as much as a 12 yr old girl, using a big gear up hills does not agree with me. But such is life. Finally after being passed by who knows how many people I had finished the ride and just wanted to get out on the run.

Once I started running I knew I was pretty far back so I knew I had a lot to make up. However, I still wanted to try to head out in a comfortable pace so I wouldn’t blow up. First mile was around 5:40 and I was nice and comfortable so I was pleased with that. Paulo was out on the course giving encouraging words but I knew I was pretty far back when he wasn’t actually giving any time splits to guys ahead of me. Anyway, I felt nice and relaxed and just kept clicking off the miles as efficiently as possible. Finally my right glute really started to tighten up the last mile, so I figured I had put in a pretty good effort.

So I ended up 20th overall in a time of 4:17. Full results can be found here. Overall though not a bad start to the season. The swim, the run, and T2 were good but the bike and T1 sucked. But hey, what else is new?