Monday, July 27, 2009

Between Tris: Training, a Stomach Virus & the Tour

Last weekend was a sprint tri; next weekend is an Olympic tri. Thus, this weekend was a bridge to keep in general good shape and step up the training to the next level. With my calf issues, I didn't want to overly push the training during the week. Jacques & I hit the pool on Tuesday increasing our training session from 20 minutes to 30 minutes. My theory is to have the time in the pool as long as I think I might be swimming at an event. That way I can tell myself during an event that a swim portion of a tri is no more demanding than my workouts. Thursday, I did an easy 10 on the bike just to test out the calves. No problems, but I'm not sure I would have wanted to crank out a hard 10 either.

The whole week, I was suffering from a minor stomach virus. Wife Salome's supposed food poisoning turns out to be a stomach virus which she graciously shared with me. It was one of those annoying viruses that's not bad enough to keep you in bed, but troublesome enough to make you wonder what you ate or drank that disagrees with your stomach. We awoke daily with headaches and our stomach's feeling full of nothing. No gastro intestinal stuff, thank God, but you feel sightly yucky. We tend to think of viruses as a winter phenomena, but I think they are as common in the summer, just not as sever.

Before our Friday morning pool session, Jacques drops the bomb that he and his wife Christine are relocating to North Carolina in August. Fortunately, in this period of layoffs and business failures, Jacques move is a good one. He is merging his business with one based in North Carolina. Its a good deal for Jacques, but I'm losing a training partner. Oh well, I guess we'll all be doing events in North Carolina after Jacques get the lay of the triathlon and running scene. After our 30 minutes in the pool, I do a couple of miles on the treadmill. Still no problems with the calves. The several days off seems to have done the trick.

Saturday morning was an 30 minute open water swim off Ft. Lauderdale Beach. It felt good. Jacques had planned a 5 mile run, but I was saving my run for a Sunday bike/run brick. I go home and do 3 miles easy on the treadmill before sitting down to watch the Tour de France. Lance rode very smartly up Mont Ventoux sticking with Frank Schleck and not letting brother Andy draw him away and burn him out. Way to defend the podium finish Lance.

On Sunday, Salome, Jacques, Tony and I were joined in our ride by Miranda, a transported Canadian triathlete of high skills. Tony, Salome & Miranda were doing a 60 mile ride, while Jacques & I would do 30. I planned to tack on a 4 to 6 mile run. Other than the classic early ride flat by Jaques (it seems someone flats in the first several miles of a Sunday ride), the ride was great. Jaques & I turned after the Boca Inlet Bridge and hopped onto the back of a group until they started to ramp up the pace a little too high. My run was OK to start, but the temperatures started climbing fast. I ducked into Brich State Park and did 2 miles in the shade of the park to make a total of about 5 miles. By the time Salome came in from the 60 miler, I was showered and watching the peleton make its way into Paris. I was blown away by the way Team Columbia'-HTC launched Mark Cavendish to the largest lead sprint finish I've ever seen on the Champs Élysées. Sweet revenge by George Hincapie over Garmin-Slipstream for denying him his day in the yellow jersey.

As my brother Dave said to me: "Its always bitter-sweet seeing the last stage of the Tour de France. Its always great seeing the riders sweeping around the Champs Élysées with the monuments in the background and a guaranteed interesting finish and awards ceremony. But as the Phil, Paul, and Bobke hinted at: its going to be even more interesting next year with Lance and Alberto on different teams openly competing. With the Schleck brothers in the mix, it going to be very interesting. Its hard to think we have to wait a whole year to see this great race again.

Co-blogger John returned from his week long dive trip to Honduras. The photos look like a good time was had by all; however, its time to get back into training buddy. With Jacques leaving town, I need a training partner to force me to show up at the pool.

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