Monday, July 26, 2010


S: 29,400 yds
B: 5h 16min
R: 4h 6min

Total: 17h 6min

It was an interesting week. On Monday evening my ITB was a little sore but then it got really painful when I laid down for bed and ended up keeping me up for a couple of hours. As a precaution, PS had me skip the run the next day. I was bummed/frustrated but it was a good idea as I havent felt it since. Kind of weird.

Then, on Wednesday, I flatted about 200m from where I flatted on the same day last week but on the opposite wheel. It was a pretty weird, annoying coincidence.

From there on out, the rest of the week went well. The weekend was the start of the taper for Steelhead 70.3 so it was nice to have a little extra time on Sunday. I celebrated by cleaning out my gutters. Thrilling, I know.

And now that everyone has been lulled to sleep, that is all.

Monday, July 19, 2010


"I was awful in the first half of the race, so I had to work a little bit harder to win. It's all about determination, because I want to be the best, and I want to stay on top... I don't pick one person out and say 'he will be hard to beat' because you never know who will pop up" -Usain Bolt, in a nice article on Bolt and the current level of sprinting.

What makes this QOTD material, though, is the fact that Bolt is still driven to get better even though his world records in the 100 and 200m are seemingly untouchable and he hasnt been beaten in almost 2 years.

And, just in case you missed the race:


S: 26,200 yds
B: 9h 20min
R: 5h 37min

Total: 21h 51min

All in all, a really solid week. After a dismal last couple of months on the bike, it appears that I'm finally getting used to my new ride as the power numbers from last week crept back up towards expected levels. The real test, of course, will come during Steelhead but it was still encouraging to have begun to reverse the recent rash of power outages.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Pretty cool commercial

Almost makes me want to buy a Corvette. Or at least go use a chainsaw, TIG welder, or other piece of heavy machinery...

Monday, July 12, 2010

Jul5-11 + Race Report

S: 25,500 yds
B: 8h 18min
R: 5h 38min

Total: 20h 39min

Pretty solid week of training culminating with the Chattanooga Waterfront Triathlon on Sunday morning.

I was given #11 which meant, due to the time trial start, that I'd be the 11th person to start. I say person, incidentally, because the 10th person to start was a female. None of this matters, of course, but it just further adds to my well documented disdain for time trial starts. With 5 seconds between racers, this meant the first person started 50 seconds earlier than me which just doesnt make for much of a race. With that out of the way...

I took off when instructed and tried to get out hard and catch as many people as possible. I felt pretty good but of course its pretty impossible to tell how fast you are actually going when you are swimming by yourself down a river. I quickly passed a couple people who started in front of me and then caught a couple more at the end of the swim. (I believe my split was around 18:40 but havent see results with splits yet...)

Out of the water, I had a quick transition and was out on my bike without much trouble. Once on my bike, though, I had a little trouble getting my right foot in my shoe but then took off. Eric Bell, who I had passed in the water, came by me pretty fast on one of the early hills but after that I didnt see anyone else until around mile 20 when I passed someone who had started ahead of me.

Out onto the run, this course immediately greets athletes with a pretty long hill, followed by about a flight and a half of stairs. Clearly I've been slacking on my stairs training as I couldnt decide whether to take them one at a time or two at a time. After a bit of flat, I made it down the short steep downhill and was finally ready to start running. The first mile was a little slow but that was to be expected considering the topography. The rest of the course was pretty flat and I was feeling good clipping off 5:30s. I finally caught and passed some guys who had started ahead of me but the heat was starting to come into play. Mile 5 hurt quite a bit but I knew I just needed to get up the hill at around 5 1/4 miles and I could open it up from there. After cresting the hill, I started picking up the pace but then was greeted the harsh reality of having to go down those same stairs while other athletes were coming up. Like the up-stairs, my down-stair skills were pretty poor but eventually I made it down to the road. From there, I could finally open it up and sprint home as fast as possible.

Upon crossing the finish line, I wasnt exactly sure what my finishing position was. I thought I had passed 5 people out on the course (2 in the swim, 1 on the bike, 2 on the run) but wasnt sure if maybe I had missed someone in the swim. When the awards were finally posted, I was indeed 6th.

Overall I thought I had a decent swim and run but another disappointing bike ride as I'm still struggling with a lack of power. The splits for the race still havent been posted but I wouldnt be surprised it turns out I was outsplit by an 11 year old girl.

On a more enjoyable note, after the race I ran another 50min with Nick W and then enjoyed the rest of the day with the Birmingham crew. Big River Brewing Co supported the race by providing 2 free beers to all participants (over 21, of course) so we returned the favor and supported their restaurant after the race. The Sweet Magnolia Brown Ale was delicious but the Fish Tacos left a bit to be desired.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Inadvertent cylclocross

If you happen to get a new road bike anytime in the near future, it would probably be a good idea to check what kind of wheels and tires you are getting. The specific make and model of the wheels isnt too important but the type certainly is. Apparently, tubeless road wheels are now in vogue. Or maybe not and I just got "lucky."

Either way, about an hour into my ride last night, towards the end of my first interval, my bike felt a bit wobbly and I noticed the front tire was looking a little low. I stopped, checked the tire, and sure enough... it was flat. Bummer.

As I started to change it, though, I noticed the tire was connected to the rim and then... I saw the writing on the wall, so to speak. Literally, it was on the rim: tubeless. DUMPSTER.

Needless to say, I didnt have another tubeless tire or, unfortunately, anything to fix this one. Additionally, I was over on the Arsenal (where I do all my weekday riding) so calling the roommate wasnt an option since he does not have access. So since it was a slow leak, I shot it with some CO2 and took off riding. Eventually the additional air escaped and I was left to ride the rest of the way home on the rim.

About 35 minutes later, I arrived safe and sound. Thankfully the roads on the Arsenal and short trip back to my house are relatively smooth, so I was actually able to hold a respectable speed. And I have to say Shimano's Ultegra WH-6700 wheelset is pretty bad ass for holding up that long without any air in the tire.

All in all, it couldve been worse. I missed part of my workout but at least I made it home in one piece with a bike (and wheel) that is still functioning. And really, with The Tour having gone of over the cobbles the other day, the timing was kind of fitting.

Monday, July 5, 2010


S: 25,000 yds
B: 7h 25min
R: 4h 21min

Total: 18h 21min

After a couple of easy days after the race, I was back into the swing of things on Thursday. It was a bit cooler here over the weekend and that allowed for a really solid ride on Saturday followed by a fast tempo run Sunday morning.

Friday, July 2, 2010


Well, I came back from Lubbock and found out I still have a job, so thats a good thing. There were, however, about 300 out of around 1200 on our contract that did get let go which was unfortunate. Additionally, there is quite a bit of uncertainty about next year.

The federal government's fiscal year starts October 1st and, this being an election year, there almost certainly will not be an omnibus spending bill for FY11 passed before then. Typically this means there is instead a CR (continuing resolution) which provides federal agencies funding for programs at the spending levels of the previous year until a new budget is passed. If this happens, it leaves NASA in a bit of a paradox. Congress will be telling us to spend at the previous year's budget allocation, in which there was money specifically for Ares I. However, the President has canceled that program. So who knows what will happen...

On a lighter note, July 4th is of course this Sunday and in celebration, members of the NPR staff dictated the Declaration of Independence. So because its good to remember where our country came from (and because TJ is the man), the audio is linked below. Enjoy, and Happy Friday!