Saturday, April 17, 2010

MMMM Granola

Granola is probably one of my favorite foods (other than peanut butter...btw, what is your favorite peanut butter?). I have been trying to make my own on and off for a few months. Some batches come out good, some....edible, but not something you'd crave. My favorite store bought is Nature's Path Organic Pumpkin Flax Granola. It is just so good. So, I'm trying to duplicate it, but not having the luck yet. If I get something that is good, I'll be sure to post the recipe.

Along with trying to make granola, Jaime and I are starting a garden. I think we are going to have lots and lots of home grown organic produce this summer. We just have to get the plants to survive the transplant. We've got lots of beans, peas, tomatoes, peppers, strawberries, cucumbers, and onions in planters, and quite a few of them have already started coming up really well. Our peas are about 3 inches tall already! Now we just have to get them in the ground!

So, along those lines, things have been pretty busy. We are really close to closing on a house! Hopefully we'll be there by the 23rd. Needless to say, in all of our spare time we have been packing stuff up. I kind of like it because it means we can also throw stuff out or give it to goodwill, so it works like a good spring cleaning too.

Last week was back to hard training after a good recovery week. I had a really solid week last week and the weather cooperated nicely. In all, I put in about 14 hours total, split into 3 hours swimming, 3 hours running, 1.5 hours strength, and 6.5 hours biking, which translates into 8400 yards swimming, 107 miles biking (Close to 6000 feet of climbing included) and 22 miles of running.

This week is almost finished with just a strength training session tomorrow, followed by a 3 hour bike/4 mile run brick session. The idea was to get the brick in today as 1.5 hours on the mtn. bike, and 4 miles trail running, since that would more closely simulate Xterra racing, but the weather turned pretty foul at the end of the mtn bike. Normally I would have still done the run, but it was 50 and raining, which sounds like a recipe for a head/chest cold, so I scratched the run after. Live to train another day.

More packing, and a bigger week coming up next week. I'll post details about what that week looks like soon. If you are looking for a little extra motivation to work out/train, check out When you sign up you choose a sponsor/charitable cause combination, and as you log your workouts, the sponsor will donate money to the charity. Win/win situation if you ask me. It is really fun to log all of your activities for a week and look at how much money you raised for your cause, just by working out and spending a few minutes entering the data.


Sunday, April 4, 2010

1st MTN Bike of the year

The last workout of the week was by far the most fun. Jaime and I went up to Marshall Mesa this afternoon. I mountain biked for an hour and while I was out Jaime hiked around for an hour. It was great to get out and enjoy the beautiful day. A lot of other people had the same idea, so it was a bit crowded, but in all a great first ride. Here are some pics.

Next week I'm back to hard training again. 3 weeks of increasing volume plus the 4th week as recovery, with some higher intensities than the previous 4 week block are on tap. This is Joe Friel's Base 3 if you follow his periodization plan. This week will be 13.5 hours with 3 swims, 4 bike rides, 4 runs, and 2 strength training sessions. This is where the training starts to get fun to me. I'll be getting hill work in to develop my strength biking and running. I'll also start to put in some more work at threshold intensities on the bike and run, and extend the durations of the threshold work in swimming. Swimming will have more strength work as well, with paddles and drag sets added. This part is hard, but fun. I find it fun because some of the workouts each week will challenge my ability to hold some hard paces, which hopefully will lead to better speed. That is what it is all about isn't it?

I'll try to keep up with the posts a little better than in the previous block. Hopefully more of the training will happen outdoors and some pics will be loaded as well.

*The first few steps are always the hardest ones*

Recovery, Good news

This week is a recovery week. Total training came down significantly from last week. I did about 15 miles of running, 6,000 yards of swimming and probably about 60-70 miles on the bike. I have one ride left this afternoon, which is going to be at Marshall Mesa on the mountain bike - FINALLY! In the recovery week I also do one time trial in each sport to test my fitness for progression and re-establish my training zones. My swim test went will, I think. The reason I'm not sure is that I may have lost count on my laps, but I'm pretty sure I didn't. The time just dropped so much from my last 1,000 yard test that it seems unlikely. Anyway, I'm going with the better of the two times that it could have been, which means I dropped about 45 seconds off of my 1,000 time. Needless to say, I was pumped about that.

On the bike test, I'm not sure if I'm better or not. The bike test is a 20 minute, all out time trial. I have talked about the "poor mans powertap" in this blog before, and by that method I had a 5% improvement when measuring my speed. I'm not sure how much better, if at all, that I really was though, since this is my first true test with a powertap. In any case, I have good zones established for the next block of training.

I had similar results with my run test. I did a 5K simulation for this test. This was a pretty tough test because it was an absolute gale outside. I probably should have postponed it until today, but I kind of wanted to just get it done and over with. I stayed pretty much the same as my last 5K, which I guess isn't too bad since I had just done the bike test about 15 hours before, and the wind was definitely and issue.

We got some great news this week as well. Jaime's artery is healing up very well. Now instead of about a 5 inch dissection, she only has about an inch left that needs to get healed up. Still 6 more months of low activity and blood thinners, but at least it is much less likely that she'll need to have surgery for a stent. GOOD STUFF!!

Train hard and stay safe

Big Training Week, a visit from friends

In my last post I talked about how I had just finished up my first week of base 2 training. Since then I've had two more weeks of increasing volume with last week being the biggest week I've done since probably mid-summer last year. The totals from last week were 3.5 hours of swimming for 10,200 yards, 8 hours of biking for 136miles, and 3.25 hours of running for 24 miles, plus 2 strength training sessions. All in all around 17 hours of training.

I was pretty spent by the end both physically and mentally. 5 and a half hours of the biking was inside on the trainer, which is just no fun. It is useful though because the quality tends to be high; no stoplights, no downhills, etc. Luckily Sunday's long ride brick was outside, or honestly, I probably would have skipped it. To add to the mental exhaustion, we have been searching for a house to buy. So, there was quite a bit of shuffling workouts around to make everything happen for that.

We had some good friends in town last week as well. We spent a night up in Dillon with a bunch of friends, so that was a nice relaxing time to get away from things for a night.