Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Miami 70.3

Last week I made a trip to Miami this is the third time I have raced here. It was the second 70.3 race I ever did and the first course I broke 4 hours on. So it has a little more of a personal connection to me than other races.

Downtown Miami is an interesting place to try and train. Luckily I had an understanding of the area and new where to go do my biking and swimming. It was a little cooler than usual the day of the race, which was very nice since Miami can get really hot and sticky.

I had one of my best swim ever at this race. I never felt out of control and was with in reach of the leaders for the whole swim. It was the first time I have been able to see the lead paddler threw out the whole swim course. Even with the swim being long I exited the water just over 30 seconds down from the leader. I was able to have a very clean start that set me up in a good position around the first corner. With 55 pro men in the race it was very similar to the large groups of swimmers in ITU races. I was able to stay very relaxed for most of the swim and make moves when I needed to. Only on the last 300m did I start to feel labored. This definitely was a first for me and I look forward to repeating it.

I jumped onto the bike in about 11th place. I was in a position I have not been in before being so close to the lead swimmer. I was able to see the lead group and new that I needed to try and make my way up to them. That is were the medals were and I needed to be there. I pushed into a biking zone that I have not gone before and road one of my fastest times if not the fastest. But I still was not able to bridge the gap.
I entered into the run in 8th place and was just was not able to get my run legs going. I lost a couple of positions after a hard fought run and finished in 10th. It was not the result I was looking for but I will move onto the next one.
Next up will be 70.3 Austin on Oct 30. This will be the first time I have tried to race two 70.3 one week apart.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016


Nutrition is a very important part of the puzzle when you are trying to get everything out of your body on a day to day basis and then asking it to do the unthinkable on race day. Personally I have not even really thought about my nutrition until this year.

When I was racing ITU and in University nutrition did not even enter into my train of thought. My nutrition then was eat enough no matter what it was cake, cookies, meat and the occasional green thing. I had a couple of races go up in flames because of these bad habits.

When I started to race Ironman 70.3 things started to change, slowly at first. First I got my race nutrition under control then I moved onto getting my day-to-day nutrition figured out. Here are some things I have learned and use to keep my body going.

Lets look at race nutrition first. A couple of rule I work with are 300-350 calories an hour on the bike and 200 calories an hour on the run. These numbers will go down the sorter/faster the race is. Water/electrolyte is based of how hot the weather is and how much I need but roughly 750ml and hour.

For me these race are under 1 hour so I would really only be looking to drink. I might put a little bit of 1st Endurance Liquid Shot or a Gel into my water bottle but that would be it. Your body has enough energy stores to get threw 90min of work without taking in any food.

These races would be in the 2 hour range. So I would be looking to take in about 200 calories on the bike and maybe 100 on the run if I needed it.

This is when nutrition starts to become a real factor. These races are about 4 hours (24-26min swim, 2:05-2:15 bike, 1:10-1:20 run).
-I like to take eat something right before the swim about 100 calories.
-On the bike I take in most of my nutrition as 1st Endurance Liquid Shot they come in a handy little flasks. I take in about 100 calories every 20min so 300 calories an hour. If you take in much more your gut will shut down and you will not get any nutritional value from your food.
-For the run I look to take in about 200 calories about 50 calories every 5km. I use 1st Endurance Liquid Shot but I like to water it down so that it is easier to take in with out water.

Long Course (4km swim, 120km bike, 30km run):
For the long course distance I just extend my half eating plan.
-A gel before the swim, 300 calories an hour on the bike and 200 calories an hour on the run.

I have not raced an Ironman.

When it comes to my day-to-day nutrition there are a few things that I have found really help. It is so important to eat with in 30min of your workout. I think the biggest trap that we have fallen into is protein. Protein is important in our diet but we have been pushed to take too much and have forgotten that simple carbohydrates are just as important, carbohydrates or the energy that fuels our body.

I have started to make large batches of rice/pasta/quinoa so that I have a carbohydrate ready right after my workout. Once I have had some carbs I will go and get some protein. It is simple but it works.

On top of my regular diet I take a few supplements to make sure my body is healthy. The most important one is Regenurex, it is a powerful antioxidant and has anti-inflammatory properties. This helps my body stay healthy and ready to go. To keep my immune system strong and healthy I take probiotics. On top of those I also take iron and vitamin C supplements.

Long Course Worlds

I raced the ITU Long Course World Championship this year. It was the longest race I have done o date a 4km swim, 120km bike and 30km run. The race fell three weeks after the 70.3 worlds championships in Australia. It was going to be a very different race.

Long Course Worlds was in flat, hot and windy Oklahoma City. It is not called tornado country for nothing. Even the morning before the race the winds were strong and turning the water up.  But I knew that everyone was in the same boat. 
The swim was crazy it probably was one of the choppiest swims I have been in outside of the ocean. The waves were hitting us from the side and it was like a washing machine out there. With such a long swim I knew that no matter what happened I had to keep pushing and stay as close to the leaders as possible. About half way threw the first loop that all went out the window and it was just about getting the swim done and onto the bike. The wind had blown some of the sighting buoys away and there was a big gap where all you could see was water. I was blown of course and became very disoriented to the point were I had to pop my head up too see where I was. Finally after a struggle I made it onto the second loop. The second look was a little smother since I knew what to expect but there still were a few times when I had to look around to find my next sitting point. After the race I talked to a few other pros and it seemed that every one was in the same situation getting pushed all over the place.

When I finally got on dry land I new that it was time to get stuff done. I had a lot of time to make up, but I could not just go crazy on the first few km with such a long ride ahead of me. I built into the bike and slowly caught a few people as I went along. It was very important that I stayed hydrated and ate properly. For this race I aimed to take in 300cal an hour on the bike and drink as much as needed. I used 1st endurance liquid shot with caffeine added to it for my nutrition. At every water station I made sure I cooled myself down with water. I was able to hold myself together until about 100km. 
Picture by: Joel Jameson
Then my body just fell apart. I started to get a head ach and could not focus. All I could do was keep moving forward fighting against the wind. As the bike came to an end I was able to catch a couple more people.

When I got onto the run all I could think was, ‘I need to fight for every place in this race.’ The run was a survival, you just had to keep running and picking people off. I was able to work my way up from 17th to 12th place on the run. I just had to stay on the gas and never back off. It was so nice to race of my country again under the maple leaf.

Over all it was a good day but I am always looking for more and I will be looking to build on this result in 2017. Next up I will be racing Ironman 70.3 Miami and Austin.