Sunday, June 26, 2011

Triathlon Over

Well the triathlon is over and Jen and I are enjoying a lunch at Cheesecake Factory. The race went pretty good for me today. I ended up with good bike and my best run ever. My splits were 15:52 swim, 36:32 bike and a 22:10 run so with transitions my total was 1:17:06. Not sure but I bet that is probably a PR for me at this race. Kind of surprising to pull a PR off given my casual approach to training this year but I'm thinking having two more years of expeirence and an Ironman under my belt since last time I did the race helped. All in all the Copper Creek triathlon is probably one of the best run sprint triathlons in Iowa and a must do for all triathletes. They have great swag, plenty of volunteers and plenty of post race food. Now Jen and I are going to enjoy a nice lunch and head for home to relieve mema and papa from watching the boys. 

Transition Setup

Well here I am at the Copper Creek Tri and my transition is setup and I'm ready to race. These sprint events are always a bit more low key then the Ironman events. With Ironman events peoples nerves are a lot more on edge.

Up And Getting Ready

I'm up and getting ready for the Copper Creek Tri. This morning I let Jen sleep in until 5:30 so I won't get to the triathlon until a little later then I normally do but transition doesn't close until 7:30 today so it should be good. Its just a short race today which means Jen won't have to stand around all day waiting for me to get done.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Exploring The Zoo

The picnic just got over and we are walking around the zoo checking out the animals. I didn't get to attend most of the conference because I had to pick my packet up but Jen said she really enjoyed it. In fact I got the chance to chat with Roy Reiman for a few minutes which was pretty cool. Not every day you get the chance to talk to a publishing mogul. The conference made Jen excited to start doing more for the magazine and it sure doesn't hurt that she is good friends with the editor so maybe she will get some stuff published.

Race Packet Picked Up

While Jen was in a round table session at the Our Iowa Picnic I used the time to sneak down to Pleasant Hill to pick up my race packet. Just like every year they didn't dissapoint with the race swag. I got a huge TYR backpack and a nice water bottle to go with it. It has been really cool today hasn't even gotten into the 70's yet so I'm hoping it isn't too cold tomorrow. Nothing worse then freezing on the bike for 45 minutes. Well I better get back too the picnic before Jen wonders where I ran off too.

Our Iowa Picnic

Jen and I made the long trek over to Blank Park Zoo in Des Moines for the Our Iowa Picnic. Jen being a new Hawk-Eye and knowing the editors real well thought it would be good. It also gave me an excuse to do the Copper Creek Triathlon since we will be here anyways. 

Saturday Morning Fun

Yesterday while Jen was in town she stopped at goodwill to buy some clothes and in the process picked up a Battleship game for the boys. I don't think he has stopped playing it since he got it. Poor mema has played about 50 games in the last two days. For Jen and I we are headed to Des Moines to go to the Our Iowa picnic and then tomorrow I'm going to do the Copper Creek triathlon. Once again its going to be a busy weekend but should be fun and hopefully I won't be breaking up any fist fights ;)

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Boys Enjoying The Summer

I'll tell you what the boys have really been enjoying the summer this year.  Clancey is old enough now that him and Marshall can have a lot of fun playing together and they sure have been.  Yesterday Jen put the slip and slide up for the boys and they played in it together most of the afternoon.  They made up nicknames for one other, Clancey was shortstop and Marshall was pit stop, and had so much fun at one point Marshall announced that this was the funnest day of his life.  When you get older and into the drudgery of life you great to see your kids enjoying the simple pleasures of childhood.  :)

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Lazy Day

Today being fathers day I utilized it to the fullest to have a lazy day on the couch.  We woke up and got to have mema's wonderful cinnamon rolls for breakfast and then I laid on the couch surfing the web and watching movies until noon.  About noon mema cooked up a great lunch of brats and potato salad with rhubarb crisp for desert, then it was off to Ames to drop the tuxedos off and finally the long trip home. It was good to have a nice lazy day after such a long day at the wedding yesterday.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Crazy Wedding

The wedding turned out to be quite the affair. Everyone did a good job of playing nicey face up until the reception and then it kind of fell apart. The dinner went good, the speeches and the wedding party dance went good. I won't say who was in the fight to protect the innocent, besides to say it wasn't me, but about 9pm a fight broke out right outside the reception hall that I had to help break up. I just hope that word of this doesn't get to Allison or Jigs until tomorrow. This day was about them and I'm embarrassed to think that this happened on there special day. I just hope that this doesn't ruin it for them.

Party Bus

The wedding is over and the party bus is on the way to the reception. Looks like it is going to be a wild trip over to the reception. They have a stripper pole on the bus. I'm not entirely certain I'll be able to keep my clothes on.

Wedding Party Gathered

The wedding party has gathered and we are getting ready to take our pictures. The boys are doing good so far and look cute as buttons.

Picture Of The Boys Together

Here is a great picture of the boys and I together and looking good.

Wedding Day

Here we are at Jigs and Allison's wedding for the big day. When we walked in Jigs was sitting at the front of the church by himself in deep contemplation about the day to come. So far he doesn't seem to be too freaked out which is good. I'll keep the blog up to date as the progresses.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Rehearsal

Here we are at the rehearsal for Jigs and Allison's wedding. So far everything is going well and the family is getting along just fine. The boys are enjoying the new ball grandma Marsha got them and playing on the playground equipment. I'm glad everything is going alright for Jigs and Allison's special day and I will do my darnest to make it stay that way.

Two Little Men

Well myself and my two little men just picked up our tuxedos for the big wedding tomorrow. We decided to stop at Hickory Park and get the boys something to eat before we head to the rehersal. Poor Marshall didn't eat breakfast or lunch today so he was freaking starving and had an upset tummy. Hopefully getting some food in him makes him feel better.

Busy Morning

This morning has been a pretty busy morning so far. I took the day off because we have to be in Boone tonight for my brother's wedding so I needed to get my long bike ride in before we leave. While I was gone Jen and the boys picked some vegetables and blanched them and then they headed over to the library for story hour. Once again Clancey picked the right number of candies in the jar so for the second week in a row he took home the big prize. Now we are getting ready to head off to the wedding and it is sure to be an experience. Right now most of my family is mad at me for one reason or another so let's just hope every one can remain civil for the sake of my brother, even after the alcohol starts to flow at the reception. I guess if people don't it will make for good stories for a lot of people after the wedding.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Back Home

I made it back home about an hour ago from Kansas. I'm sure glad I waited a day to drive back because I would have fallen asleep on the way home last night for sure. It was hard enough to stay awake today on the way home. On the way back when I went through Des Moines there was one heck of a thunderstorm which made it pretty hard to see the road.  I was a little worried I was going to drive into a tornado as hard as it was blowing. I did make a quick trip up to Ames so I could have lunch at Hickory Park, which may have been part of the reason I was so tired on the way back. It's nice to be back home though and just relaxing on the couch. This is going to be another really busy week so I'm going to enjoy this short downtime I have.

Race Weekend Over

Well my race weekend is over and I'm getting ready to head back to Iowa. I was a bit disappointed in my performance yesterday but I have to remember you can't always PR. If nothing else it gave me the experience of swimming in very rough conditions and gave me the wonderful reminder of cramping. It also told me my casual approach to training is probably not going to cut it for Louisville if I don't want to suffer. One of my friends told me a good quote about Ironman, he said training is about taking small doses of misery so you don't have to pay it all on race day. That is a very true statement, the Ironman gods will get there misery payment in full you just don't want that all to be on race day. The race helped set me right and refocus my training which was its goal.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Ironman Kansas 70.3

Well the race is over and it was a struggle. The swim was the roughest and biggest waves I have ever experienced I my life. My swim time was right at an hour so I was 20 slower then my already slow swim time. The bike went alright I was a bit faster then last year and it felt good. The run was horrible I cramped about 4 miles in and then fought them the rest of the race. My race made me feel like I need to focus on my Louisville training if I want to finish.

In Transition

Here I am in transition getting ready for the race. This will be my last entry of the day because I don't have anywhere to put my phone when I head to T2. Looking like a rainy day today so that should be fun. I guess its the same conditions for everyone so I'm not that worried. Remember you can track my progress on Ironman.com today. Wish me luck.

Race Day

Today is race finally race day and I was up at 3:30am to get ready to go. Of course this morning I started to come down with what Jen has right now but it isn't too bad yet. I work up with a slight sore throat but I'm hoping the worst of this thing can hold off for 12 hours. Besides that I'm ready for this race. I was just thinking my brothers bachelor party was last night I wonder if they are even in bed yet.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Ironman Gear

I stole this idea from Carl but I thought it was a great idea. My start time is 7:22 and my number is 1168 for those who want to track my progress tomorrow on www.ironman.com. I'm not going to have a tracker tomorrow so it will just be when I cross the check points. I'm pretty excited that Chrissie Wellington will be racing tomorrow she is the Ironman World Champion and a machince. Tomorrow it is a 3:30am wake up and I'm going to get to the race at about 4:30 going to be a long day. Tomorrow night I will sleep like a baby.

Lunch At Free State

Now that I'm checked in it is lunch at the local brew pub. As busy as the placed looked from the outside we got right in. I broke down and got one of their local brews but will have to stop at one. At the Ironman store I picked up a new Ironman logo transition bag so I can finally dump my old climbing bag. I hooked up with Carl and his friend Troy for lunch so I won't have to eat by myself which is nice. So far this place seems pretty nice.

Bike In Transition

I'm checked in to Ironman Kansas and now the waiting begins. This is always the worst part about Ironman races is the day of waiting around before race the next day. I guess I'm not all that nervous this year because I've done the race and its only half Iron distance. I'll probably go hang out with my friends for a while at their camper for a bit, go grab some lunch and then head back to the hotel. I'm debating if I want to shave today or not. Last year it took forever to get my legs shaved so I'm not sure I want to. I guess if the urge strikes when I stop by the store to pick my breakfast stuff I get a razor.

Ironman Kansas 70.3

Well I made it to the race site, I'm a bit early so I'm having to wait to check in so I'm just looking around a bit. With my tri-suit ripping last week I'm kind of the hunt for something to wear tomorrow at the race. If I don't find anything I'll just wear my underarmour shirt and trishorts I brought but I at least want a new top if a can one. I saw a couple of my friends already they were headed down for a swim so the plan is to hook up with them later. Now that I'm down here I really excited to get this race started.

Friday, June 10, 2011

In KC

I decided to stop for the night in Kansas City at the exit to the Kansas speedway. I'm only about 40 minutes from the race site so I should be able to get there first thing to get checked in and drop my bike off. Weather looks good for race day, right about 86 degrees with a slight possibility of rain which would kind of be nice. I'm excited to get to the race site and see my friends and get into the Ironman experience.

On The Way To Kansas

Well I'm on my way to Ironman Kansas 70.3 for the weekend. I'm headed down to the race by myself this year because the family wasn't feeling that great and we didn't want to put the burden on Mema and Papa to watch the boys three weekends in a row. Figured the boys would like to be able to spend the weekend at home for once. It also gives me a chance to see a bunch of my friends who are doing the race this weekend. I have high school, college and work friends all doing the race so it should be a good time. We are very competitive so we are all going to be laying it down to try to beat one another. Right now I'm in West Des Moines eating at Applebee's before I make the rest of the 4 hour trip to Kansas.  Wish me luck everyone.

Thursday, June 09, 2011

Packing For Kansas

Tonight I'm packing my stuff to get ready for Ironman Kansas 70.3 on Sunday. Hard to believe that my first big race of the year is Sunday. After last Sunday's race I'm feeling pretty confident for my race. The real key will be to race smart and not put too much into the bike that my run suffers. I'm considering leaving tomorrow after work so I don't have to drive down all day Saturday, get checked in, and get my biked dropped off all in the same day. Then have to get up at 3:30 am the next day. I'm considering driving back on Sunday after the race so that would be a lot of driving on two back to back days with a half Ironman packed in the middle. I will see how I feel on Sunday and let that decide for me. Keep track of my blog over the weekend to see how the race goes.

Sunday, June 05, 2011

Lazy Afternoon

This afternoon I had big plans of actually being productive but turns out I was not really feeling it. After my triathlon I got some pretty bad stomach cramps and couldn't shake them all afternoon. So pretty much my afternoon consisted of laying on the couch and watching Netflix. I'm thinking that pizza, french fries, and a shake was a horribly bad idea. I'm also thinking my lunch of a buffalo chicken sandwich was an even worse idea. Need to keep that in mind for next weekend. If nothing else it got me out of mowing and I got to catch up on 24.

Pigman Triathlon Race Report

Today was the Pigman  Sprint Triathlon in Palo, Iowa.  The Pigman is my first triathlon of the year and my warm up race to Ironman Kansas 70.3 next Sunday in Lawrence, Kansas.  The picture above is my getting my transition area ready for the start of the race.  Most of the time transition areas open up at 5am but this morning it opened up at 6am so Jen and I got to sleep in until 4:30am this morning.  If it would have opened at 5am it would have been a 3:30am morning for us and Jen would not have been very happy.  Triathlons are a sport of hurry up and wait.  The picture above was taken at 6:30am and I didn't actually start the race until 8:15.


Transition area is setup, my tri-suit is zipped up and by the look on my face I am ready to go.  Now it's time to grab the wetsuit, googles, and swim cap and stand on the beach for the next hour while I wait to start to the actual race.  

 Here I am on the beach killing time while I wait for my wave to start.  A little known fact about wetsuits is the second you put them on you have to take a pee.  The first time this happened to me I didn't know what to do there were no bathrooms around and it was too far to walk to one, well what do you do?  You go stand in ankle deep water, so no one can see the pee running out from the ankles of your wetsuit, and pee yourself.  Don't worry everyone does it.  In fact at the Ironman when you are in the water for a couple hours and you are super hydrated you will pee in your wetsuit multiple times.  To tell you the truth it feels good because it warms your wetsuit right up.
 Finally the race is about to start.  Here I am in line getting ready for my turn to start.  Goggles down and I am ready to go.
 Jump up and down to warm myself up just a little bit and shake out any nerves that I might have and I am ready to rock.
 And I'm off on the first leg of the triathlon a 500 meter out and back swim.  Swimming is my worst event of triathlon and quite frankly the one I need to work on the most if I ever want to be competitive in my age group.  
 Yes, the swim is done.  All in all the swim went alright, I was a bit dizzy when I came out of the water but it passed quickly.  I thought I was swimming faster then my time showed, but oh well I guess I got it over with and I can now move onto my best event.  The bike.
 Here I am just leaving transition on the bike for the 15.5 mile ride down through the town of Palo and back.
 The bike is over and it went great.  My calf's felt like they wanted to start cramping in the last couple miles of the bike but they never did which was good.  Overall I killed it on the bike today.  I rode a 43:03, I think, which puts me close to a 22 mph average for the ride.  That was nearly a minute faster then I rode the course 2 years ago the last time I did it.

The Pigman Sprint is kind of a pain for seasoned triathlete's going for a PR because there are so many first timers on the course that just can't ride that fast.  Not many people ride time trial bikes so the ones that do are riding 5-10 mph faster then a majority of the other racers on the course.  The 15.5 mile ride includes a lot of weaving in and out of newbies and traffic to try keep your momentum.  On one downhill I was shooting down the hill close to 40mph and had to drift over the center line. against the rules, to pass a bunch of first timers riding side by side and nearly took out an on coming rider in the other lane.  We missed by mere inches and he cussed me out good as he passed, which was the appropriate reaction for what I did, but I did keep my momentum going to the bottom of the hill.
 Jen didn't get any pictures of me transitioning to the run so these following pictures are from the last 200 meters of the race.  As you can see from the picture above right about this time I decided that I was going to pass this guy in front of me.  He had the spiky hair, jersey shore look going and I decided that there was no way I was going to get beat by this guy.  I gritted my teeth and started my kick.
 After about 20 meters I was all ready right up to his butt and feeling good.  My kick looks strong and he appears to have no urge to make a foot race out of it.
 Just a couple steps later I am even with him and ready to make the pass.
 There it is the big pass.  Does he have anything to try and go with me.
It appears not but I'm not entirely sure he knew that we were racing.  Given that age group is written on the back of the right calf I had to advantage to know he was in my age group when I decided to start my kick.  By the time he could see my right calf it was too late.  My final run time was 23:20 which is right around 2 minutes faster than my run here last time in 2009.  Overall my final time was 1:21:12? (I'm not exactly sure on the seconds but I know it was low 1:21 for sure).

Overall I'm happy with my race.  I wanted to break the 1:20 barrier but I'll take a 1:21.  Given I've been training all year for 140.6, which means a lot of hours of low intensity training, I feel pretty good I have the speed to put down a 1:21.  The race gave me confidence for my race next week in Kansas, it will be hard but there were no surprises today that would make me question my ability to finish.  I am fighting some stomach cramps right now but I suspect that is due to the french fries, pizza, and strawberry shake I had last night for supper.  Note to self pre-race meals should not be made up of grease and fat.  Other then that bring on Kansas.

Pigman Tri

Here I am at the Pigman Triathlon getting ready for my first race of the season. I just got my transition area setup and now I have to sit around and wait until 8:09 when my wave takes off. Its always nice to get the season started again and get back competing. I'm feeling good about my bike today but I guess we will see how it goes.

Saturday, June 04, 2011

Packet Picked Up

I just stopped by to pick my race packet up for my first race of the season tomorrow. After training for over 6 months its going to be nice to get the race season started tomorrow. I'm feeling like I'm going to have a good race tomorrow. My biking has improved quite a bit from last year and I'm feeling good about my run tomorrow too. Not feeling real great about my swim but its only 500 meters so I can't lose that much time. Given I only have 1 week until Kansas it is what it is at this point. I'll have my wetsuit so I'll be fine just slow. Hopefully the race goes good tomorrow.

Weird Wife

I'm going to put it out there in the world I have a weird wife. While a great shopping day for most wives would be a trip to Jordan Creek Mall or some other place of that nature my wife loves to go to places like this, The Restore. Her idea of a great clothes shopping day is finding a really cute 2 dollar outfit at Goodwill. Jen is her own person and I love her for it, all though it does mean I end up with a lot of old junk in my house ;)

Lunch At Famous Dave's

Once we got done over at Miss Effie's we headed into Davenport to find some lunch. Jen suggested we head over to the place we went for Amy and Allen's birthdaym Famous Dave's. Jen and I had never done many BBQ places except for Hickory Park but I have to say that I could get into BBQ places. The ribs here are freaking killer.

Out And About With Jen

With the kids off for the weekend at Mema and Papa's, the funeral Jen was going to go to moved to Monday and no training for me Jen and I had the day free to do what we wanted. Its not that often that we get a whole day to do whatever we want to do so we take full advantage. This morning is all about what Jen wants to do. First we headed over to her friends farm to pick up some eggs and drop off some signs. Now we are at the Junk Aylum, which by the way is an appropriate name, I'm not sure its safe to let Jen come here by herself. There is just far too much crap here that Jen would buy and drag to our house. ;)  This afternoon we are headed to Cedar Rapids to go and pick my race packet up for the Pigman Triathlon tomorrow. After that we are planning to go out for supper and possibly get some groceries. Should be a nice day to just hang out and have fun.

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

9th Wedding Anniversary


Today is Jen and my 9th wedding anniversary and our 14th year of being together.  In honor of the occasion I thought I would post one of the first pictures Jen and I took together.  I'm sorry it's kind of a dark photo but I think it's good enough for you to get the point.  As I was looking through our old photo's I realized kids today have it way better.  Back in the film days you just didn't take that many pictures so there are very few photo's of Jen and I together back when we were just young pups.  While the photo isn't dated at all I'm pretty sure it was taken in 1997 at BV college when we dropped Jen's friend Angie off after a full day at Adventureland.  I can't remember much about the day, and there are no pictures, but I do remember taking this picture and it being a fun day.  Jen and I have come a long way and been through a lot together since this picture was taken so long ago.  I'm happy Jen and I found each other and we have been together for so long.  Jen is a great mom, a caring person and, contrary to the belief of some these days, a very good person.  I love you Jen and hope to have many more anniversaries together.

Enjoying The Porch

Finally yesterday Jen and I got the porch furniture out of the garage attic. We hadn't been able to get it out because some birds had made a nest and had babies. Well Jen didn't want to disturb the nest until the birds had left so that meant we had to wait and wait. Turns out we had a pretty cool spring so we didn't miss out on much porch time but I was still getting impatient waiting. Now thatwe have the furniture out I had forgotten how much I enjoy sitting on the porch and enjoying the evening. Now with my Xoom I can sit out here and read the news and just enjoy the night.