Posts with tag 'ironman'

The Longest Year Ever

Thursday, January 7, 2010

This past year of triathlon was amazing. I improved my overall fitness, and my cycling tremendously and that had a significant impact on my overall results. IronMan Lake Placid? Better by 90 minutes. IronMan Muskoka 70.3? Better by about 20 minutes. And, while it was amazing, it was very difficult. There were times when i wanted to throw it all away—training every weekend with Kathryn, with my brother and his wife, with Greg, with whomever… I was ready to give it all up on at least one occasion, and I know that Kathryn was too. In fact, we did give it all up, at least once. I think I’ve figured out at least part of the reason why. 2009 saw Kathryn and I compete in IronMan Lake Placid on July 27 and IronMan 70.3 Muskoka on September 13. I won’t get into the results—those are somewhat…

Now What?

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

This isn’t the post I thought I’d be writing, but I am. I am not feeling the way I should be feeling, but I am. Yes, I successfully completed IronMan Muskoka 70.3, and yes, it was a very challenging course, so in reality I should just be happy to have crossed the finish line—almost 40 people of the 1300 participants didn’t finish. I know that I improved significantly over my performance at IronMan Lake Placid last year, and I’m happy with that. Overall, I felt better prepared and in better shape. But the bottom line is that, for me, my performance on race day just wasn’t good enough. I trained my ass off for close to 6 months. Others that were competing with me (my wife and brother and sister-in-law in particular) all said that I would do way better than they would because they hadn’t trained. My…


Tuesday, August 12, 2008

“I want to cross the finish line of the IronMan world championship in Hawaii with Lisa Bentley.” Paraphrasing aside, those are the words of Carter, a young boy with Cystic Fibrosis who, despite his health struggles, keeps a very active lifestyle. It was at that precise moment that eleven time IronMan winner Lisa Bentley, who, like Carter, also has Cystic Fibrosis, moved me to tears as we all listened—riveted—focusing on her stories and unparalleled positive outlook on all aspects of racing and life. She goes on to tell us that Carter was her inspiration for racing IronMan Hawaii in 2007. Her theme that kept her moving forward was simply doing the best that she could to get across that finish line with Carter because that was his wish to the Make a Wish Foundation. His wish had been granted, and she was going to deliver despite the struggles every IronMan…

IronMan: It is all in the experience

Friday, June 13, 2008

As I mentioned not too long ago, my wife Kathryn and I have decided that we will do another IronMan triathlon. Despite some serious concerns about the health of my ankle after completing IronMan Lake Placid in 2007, we are committed to doing more. There was something about finishing an IronMan race—perhaps it was the combination of exhilaration, exhaustion and raw emotion that makes me want to do it again. Or maybe it is something simpler like getting better; seeing how much I can improve. Armed with the knowledge of what it takes to just finish the race, we are now embarking on a long 18 month journey to complete IronMan Lake Placid in 2009. We know what it takes to get by; now we want to see what it takes to do well. So, we’ve taken a number of steps to see exactly what we can…

All over again

Friday, May 23, 2008

It has been almost a year since my wife and I completed IronMan USA in Lake Placid, NY but the memories are still vivid and clear. Excruciating pain in my legs as they tightened themselves into iron bars – cramping with every pedal stroke, trying to make it up the most feeble of hills. Spooked by the bike accident I and several others witnessed (and subsequently provided aid to) while flying down the steepest descent on the race course. Not feeling my feet for about two-thirds of the bike. Why? Because I was an idiot and bought new cycling shoes and only managed to ride once with them for an hour as a trial before the race. Not really a bright move. At all. Forgetting our favourite race food (perogies) in the fridge at the cottage. Yes we had other food planned, but the perogies were our favourite, we’d ridden…

IronMan Bike

Sunday, October 7, 2007

I left my IronMan swim with a completely false sense of security. It had just finished the swim of my life, managed to get to the transition zone without slipping or pulling a muscle or tearing anything pushing off the sand. I found my bike clothes, got ready, and headed out feeling pretty good about the day so far. Going out of transition, I see everyone waiting for me at the side of the road. They cheer, I smile, I wave, and it is over. I’m past them in a flash, knowing I won’t see them for another 3 or more hours. All is well. I’m headed down the first hill out of town just about to head around the corner and go up another. And like almost all of my training rides, I hit the same damn pothole at the bottom of the hill and my drink flies…

IronMan Swim

Saturday, September 8, 2007

As we settled into Mirror Lake at 6:50am on race morning, I started to feel a little nervous, wondering if the horror stories I had heard would come true. With 2200+ competitors, I’ve heard that the swim start is like a washing machine with flying feet, fists and elbows everywhere. I expected the worst – thinking I’d have to put my goggles back on after having them kicked off my head by a stray heel. I was starting to wonder if we’d placed ourselves too close to start line. Would the people from behind swim around or over us? Would we need the assistance of the underwater scuba divers that keep a watchful eye for swimmers that started to go under, or were knocked out by an inadvertant strike to the head? Was I going to need to grab on to a kayak at some point to rest? I simply…

Getting Things Done

Saturday, August 11, 2007
Getting Things Done

I looked everywhere for it. I didn’t care what shape or colour it was, as long it was there and in the right position. After searching for it for hours through pain, mental anguish and exhaustion, I finally saw it there, at the side of the road near the guard rail, somewhere between Wilmington Notch and High Falls Gorge. My eyes widened as I saw the glint of the sun bounce off it. “There it is!” I thought. The perfect piece of glass—jagged and dangerous—just waiting for me. I had found my way out. All I needed to do was turn my handlebars to the right a few degrees. Simply run over it, and that would be the end of it. My tires would be shredded to bits, and I’d be stranded. The support crew would have to pick me up and drive me back into town, and I could…

All systems go!

Saturday, July 21, 2007
All systems go!

We’re set. We’ve checked in, dropped off our bikes, our biking gear, and our run gear. We’re with the kids and family that made the trip to support us. We’ve bugged my brother Gavin and his wife Michelle for the last time with questions for which we had no answers. We’re ready to eat our last big meal of pasta and chicken. We’re ready to get to bed early. We’re ready to hydrate. We’ll be up at 4:30 am to eat our breakfast and get our wetsuits and swim gear and “extra supplies” down to the lake by about 5:30. This has been a pretty amazing experience so far, and I only expect that it will continue to be amazing as we get through the race tomorrow. To Tina – you’ve helped get my body to where it is (though I’m not 100% sure exactly where, to be honest). You’ve…

Setting Expectations

Wednesday, July 11, 2007
Setting Expectations

On July 22, 2007, I’m doing IronMan Lake Placid: 3.8km swim, 180km bike, and 42.2km run. The course is beautiful and I’m really looking forward to it. I’m not setting really lofty expectations for a stellar time. That’s not really like me as I usually set pretty high goals for myself. In this case, given my experiences training, and that this is my first (only? last?) IronMan, I really need to set reasonable expectations. After having spent 6 of the last 9 weekends training in Lake Placid on the course for IronMan Lake Placid, you would think I have a pretty good idea of how long it will take me to complete the course. Al (who swims with me in the Nepean Masters Swim Club) asked me how I was feeling and what my goals were for the race. I answered that I was: bq. hoping for somewhere around the…

Lake Placid Training June 29 to July 2

Friday, June 29, 2007

We’ve spent this weekend in Lake Placid – Kathryn and I, with Gavin and Michelle, William, and Greg and Lynn. No hanging out with the kids, or just enjoying the long weekend, or spending Canada Day with our friends at their “used to be all day long but is now more like 6 hours since we all have kids” party. It has been a long weekend of difficult training in Lake Placid. It hasn’t gone as planned. Sure, we’ve been here since Friday night, and we’re leaving tomorrow on schedule. But, the original plan was: * Friday night: swim 4km * Saturday: swim 2km; bike 160km * Sunday: bike 90km; run 20km * Monday: swim 4km With all the best of intentions, we just haven’t been able to get all the training in. The weekend has been more like this: * Friday night: eat, sleep * Saturday: swim 2km; bike…