Sunday, June 27, 2010

CDA, strong bike, and snot

As I write this Julie and Darryl are part way through their IM CDA run.
Go Julie Go!
Go Darryl Go!

One of the things I don't like about the video coverage during the race is that they focus so much on the leader, especially the guy. I'd prefer to see ordinary people.

Took some time first thing to clean Estela. She's a beautiful bike and likes to look nice. The only problem was getting the chain apart. Last year it was easy as pie. This year on a new chain I couldn't get it apart so I just cleaned as much of the grit off as I could. For some reason afterward the rear deraileur adjustment changed, and I had to tighten the cable. It was all good during the ride.

The plan called for a 4 hour bike today. I'm trying to push a bit harder on the bike and find how hard I can go. I've always held back a bit on the bike. At first it was to be sure I was going to get back from what I thought of as longer rides. When I had a run after, it was to be more sure I could do that. But today I decided to push a bit harder. The very worst that would happen is that I would poop out part way and have to get Linda to rescue me. There are some other things that could happen, but I figured I could cope.

So after a good warmup I pushed. Right from the start my heart rate was a bit higher than I would have thought from my breathing, but I didn't really care. There was a very light wind helping along, but I still made excellent time. 40 minutes to get to the 22 turnoff. Passed a group of 5 people. On the other side of the road there were a zillion people riding. Later I found out it was a cancer ride thing.

I still have the faint vestiges of that cold, with a bit of a cough sometimes, and periodic snot buildups. As some of you know, Missy has decided to stop updating her blog. Sigh. She always had a good spirit about the various bodily fluid adventures that befall athletes and was a hell of a good writer besides. I really enjoyed it, but I'm not going to break her stones about it. She's a grownup and can make her own decisions. (Though maybe if I do, she'll come here for a race and to kick my ass. hmmmmm.) So in her spirit, I'll get a bit graphic here.

Periodically along rides I see people put their hand to their nose, turn their head, and with a meaty thunk a small pellet flies off to the side. Hopefully they looked to be sure nobody was riding there. I'd done a few suck and spits, but the build up today was happening faster. So I tried. I give myself a passing grade on the right nostril, mainly because I didn't get any on myself, but it wasn't particularly neat. I give myself a big fat F minus for the left nostril. I ended up wearing it all over the moustashe and cheek. Probably on my shirt too but I didn't look. After a while it dried up and I could flake it off. And yes, the Weird Al Yankovic song was running through my mind. I guess I'm a dribbler.

I hit the 45 K mark in 1:39 and kept going. 2 hours and kept going. I know that going home is faster on this course (out and back 22X) by what could be a considerable amount, depending on wind, and I for sure wanted to get the 4 hours in. So I kept going. I was sort of hoping to get right to the end of the road at Elbow Falls. But the hills start getting bigger, and the wind started getting stronger. At the 61 K / 2:29 mark I called it and turned around. I'd be choked if Elbow Falls was just out of sight, but so what. I was getting tired.

Coming out of K country is fast. Rode on the road a lot since the shoulder was really gritty. Plus, I figure if I'm doing a large fraction of the speed limit the drivers can darn well treat me like a car. 90 K in 3:27 so I'd slowed down a bit. About this point I started getting a bit fidgety on the bike and started coasting more. My low back was starting to complain, and my hams were giving me hell. We won't even talk about my sit bones, (though Missy and many others would) and my arms and hands were going numb a lot.

After I passed 22 (from the south) I started finding more of the cancer riders. No idea how much they'd been riding, but I was blowing past them, and feeling like a bike pro. My inner shark even showed up for a bit. He loves passing prey and snapping his jaws at them. And some of the riders would have been good meals even for a big shark. We zoomed past lots and lots of people. Even though I was getting really tired, I was inspired to keep up the pace, and keep pushing.

Turned left onto 37 st, with a whole crew of people waving at me to be going somewhere else. I guess they thought I was one of them. I wasn't. I wanted to get home and off the bike. It had been a really good ride, but I wanted to straighten up. Home at 4:42, 122.1 K altogether for about a 26 Kph average pace. This is the longest ride of the year so far, and maybe the second or third longest ever. Average heart rate for the ride was 127, which is a bit ridiculous given my heart rates from a ride last week. I'd had a terrible time getting my heart rate past 125 for a short interval, and here my average over almost 5 hours is 127??? I think that's just variability in my metabolism or something. Which is why I do my races based on perceived effort, rather than a heart rate number.

For the first time in a long time I had to start my brick run with a walk. Hell, I was in doubt about standing at first, and was glad I had my bike to lean on. Most of the run was a run walk. My heart rate was good, and my breathing fine, and even though it was a pretty hot day for Calgary my temperature was fine. It was my legs. They were barely up to walking, let along run. But by the end of the half hour they were coming around. Very tired. I didn't even go into the house at first. I got a drink from the hose and soaked my hat and face. Then lay down in the grass with my feet up against the house. I was enjoying looking at the clouds, and thinking about the life of a cloud.

My thinking is that I pushed the bike pretty hard, on a hilly route, on a windy day, so it's no surprise the run sucked. But what's important for me is that I did push the bike pretty hard and mostly felt pretty strong. I need to figure out where I can ride for long distances. That means pushing progressively harder and harder and risking failure. Today I think I reached my current bike maximums for speed and effort. For now. Pity I didn't have a power watt meter, but oh well, that's just another number.

Weekly Summary
Swim 3.25 hrs
Bike 7.75 hrs
Run 2.66 hrs
Walk .5 hrs
Total Cardio 14.17 hrs (highest ever, I think.)
Core 2.0 hrs
Total 16.1 hrs.


  1. the resa and i have been trying to understand "tired" more lately.

    we think that either you are:

    a - out of water, dehydrated: this makes your heart race faster to carry your sludgy blood around.

    b - out of food, bonked: dead legs

    c - sore/hurt/cramped: well, thats just icky

    d - mental case: just dont wanna.

  2. OK, that just makes me happy that people think of me in relation to....snot rockets, pee and the running shits! Truly, that makes me happy. I usually end up with some snot on my shoulder, even after all these years!

  3. Estela sounds vain. I'd like her very much.

  4. "I would poop out part way" -- when I used to live in Sparwood, the gents would call that a AHEM *turtle head.*


    I totally just wrote that as a comment on your blog.


    Getting excited about GWN???? YAY KEITH!!! :):) :)


Looking forward to reading your comment!