Going Aggressive

I went to the LBS today and had the super sweet sales man (same guy who hooked me up with my bike in the first place) there help me get in a more aggressive position. Don't get me wrong people, this isn't a real $100 -$200+ dollar fit with computers and stuff. But he does measure you up, test your flexibility and study you while you pedal.

This first pic of my position all last year. You will notice the stem angle is way up and the handle bars are above my seat.


This next picture is of the new aggressive set up. I mean WAY aggressive in comparison to my previous set up. We basically dropped the stem 24 degrees.
If you looked at the picture close enough, or read my last post, you will notice the addition of aero bars to the bike. Yep, those little doggies are on my bike, fit up (we moved the pads out and angled them slightly), wrapped w/S-Works bar tape and have a key piece of equipment mounted to them.

Now the bar tape isn't the straightest and isn't even, but for my first time wrapping any kind of bars I think I did a decent job.

I'm ready to begin the 2009 biking season with a purpose...break land speed records....NOT!

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Stupid Cars!

Well I'm at the car dealer right now getting 'serviced'...and get your mind out of the gutter (you know who you are). After taking a hit in the wallet I'm thankful for extended warranties! Free inspection, free labor, I just have to pay for parts. I'm saving about $800 having purchased the extended warranty when I bought my car. Granted it costs more than that at the time but I saved another grand or so the last time on labor. So I'm sitting here at a table and it is kind of crowded, about 12 people, so 1 guy sat down at my table with a paper. Ok, that is fine. I can share. But wow, not more than 5 min went by and I was moving. I went to sit on the couch which is less than ideal to work at. This guy WREAKED of cigs and BO. I'm sorry, I'm not a smoker and I just can't handle the smell. My dad smokes but he doesn't seem to smell like this guy. So it isn't that I'm not exposed to smokers regularly, this guy is a pack or two a day guy. And I'm certain he hasn't showered in days. I just don't understand how people can go out like that. Do you not smell yourself?

OK...now for the good stuff!


I got a new package yesterday! I bought these puppies on Ebay for $30 (~$100 retail). I ripped the package open and threw those bars on my bike. I'm going to the LBS today to get a new bike fit. They do adjustments for 2 years when you buy a new bike through them. Last year I was new to cycling and opted for a more comfortable fit. My bars are slightly higher than my seat. I want to take some of the stacks out and drop the bars some, hopefully this will get me into a more aggressive position. Right now I feel more comfortable on my drops than my hoods...I'm sure that shouldn't be right.

Then I have to mount the equipment (computer and Garmin) to these biatches and I'll be ready to fly by all you triathletes in my first outdoor triathlon (just kidding!).

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Quick Update

I SIGNED UP FOR MY FIRST TRI!

There was overwhelming support for me to break into the world of triathlon so I did. I'm doing the Lifetime indoor tri. For those of you unfamiliar you here is how it breaks down...

  • 10-minute swim in lap pool (no drowning allowed, just stand up)
  • 10-minute transition (swim to bike)
  • 30-minute bike in cycle fitness studio (bikes preset for resistance)
  • 5-minute transition (bike to run)
  • 20-minute treadmill run (I've been told this is with a 2% incline)
  • The total distance you cover across the course determines your score.
I'm not going to like the bike! I've been told the bikes are set pretty loose and this just isn't going to fly for me. I'm a bigger guy with some leg power...I like to hammer some load at 90 rpm. Not spin out of my shoes and blow out a knee.

This race is March 8th...come join me! It should be fun! Steve is prolly going to win. He has done this race at other clubs and I compared his distances vs points with those races to the results of the last time my Lifetime had this race and he would have won with the same performance.

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Frozen 5K Race Report

Race #1 for the year is under my belt. The 5k had a very fitting name for the weather this year. We knew it was going to be cold but when race morning came I just couldn't believe how fast my hands froze while attempting to tie my car key to the draw string in my pants (anyone else have a better place to tie a key when you have no zip pockets?).

The day didn't start out that well...I got up at 4 am to drive the sister and brother-in-law to the airport. Then I ate some breakfast and picked up around the house while watching the news off and on. Eventually I could leave to pick up Steve and Pharmie for the race. I wasn't even 1 block out of my driveway and I see sirens. Seriously! What are cops doing in -27 billion degrees pulling people over at 6:40am on a Saturday? I came to a nearly complete stop at the stop sign at the end of my block. There was no one around so I rolled through at like 2 mph. The cop had just been coming up the hill to my right when I was pulling into the intersection. I told him I was tired from driving the sis to the airport and now I was going to run the Winter Carnival 5K. He thought I was nuts and eventually let me go with a warning after a little lecture.


When I finally got to Steve and Pharmie's place Steve was calling wondering where I was. They grabbed their stuff and we were in the car heading to the race. Here is Pharmie and I going up the escalator to the packet pick up with Steve. For some reason people were doing same day signup....CRAZY! We don't look that bundled up here...I like being deceptive.

I wore:




  • Smart wool ski socks


  • Running Shoes with Duct Tape on them (see pic below)


  • Thermal running tights


  • Old school long underwear


  • Running pants


  • Thick under Armour shirt


  • Light technical pull over


  • Med Technical pull over


  • Thin gloves


  • Sweet Ski gloves


  • Old school face mask


  • Knit stocking cap



Jeremy, Jen, Baddapple and his son joined us. We all hung out until the race started. Jermey, Jen, Pharmie and Steve were all doing the 10K (shortened from a half marry). Badapple, his son and myself were doing the 5k. Here is a nice group photo...


The 10K started first, and the 5K started 15 min later. While we were lining up for the start I took my usual spot about half way back but since the door we were all coming from was closer to the start tons of people piled in from of me who shouldn't have been. I spent the first 3-4 blocks skipping from side to side trying to get to the outside around these people. Somehow I got to mile marker 1 at 8:12'ish!?!?!? WAY FAST FOR ME! Just for the record, I was planning on just 'jogging' this and having fun. I didn't wear my garmin or watch. I really didn't care where I finished. If you would have been with me the day before you would have seen that even more...I did a brutal spin class. 2 instructors, they traded off after 40 min...the 2nd instructor got on the bike and said "Crap, only 21 min left. We gotta get to work." She was on fresh legs since the class was beyond full (all 50 bikes) and she gave up her bike since she would be moving upfront eventually.

Back to the race, I slowed down a bit. I was feeling the spin class and leg workouts from the previous days. Somewhere near the turn around I started talking to a nice old man, Dennis. He is in his early 60's and is on some ungodly number for 5k's. I want to say he said over 5,000 but that sounds high. He has been running since HS but, I'm thinking I didn't hear him right. We chatted all the way to the last .5 miles when he fell back on the large hill (7% grade 1.5 blocks long) leading up to the finish (which was 3 blocks farther up hill but not as steep). Here is the elevation chart.



Steve flew by me (finishing his 10k) when I had about 1 mile left on my 5k. I saw him cheering as I was finishing up. I think I finished in the low 28:20's. I slowed up a lot from Mile 1. But it was nice to hang out and talk to Dennis. Here is a great pic of what I looked like after the race...

Just a little frosty! Click on it to blow it up!


It was a good day! Steve, Pharmie and I stopped at Caribou on the way home for a nice warm cup of coffee.

Check out everyone's blog for more pics and their recaps of the day...
Jeremy, Jen, Baddapple, Steve and Pharmie

ps...Jeremy, I can't find my Nike+ transmitter. It must have still been in the shoe when I tossed them. Sorry!

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Gonna freeze my testes off tomorrow

Tomorrow I will trade thoughts of my nice warm bed to drive my sister and her hubby to the airport at 4 (effing) am. I'm all for an early flight to save some money but come on. If I made a flight at 5:20 am I would get a cab and not make people drive me there at 4 am. After that I'll probably just stay up, eat breakfast and maybe do some plyometrics before the looming Secruion Frozen 5k. The name is very fitting for this year...
W.E.T.S.U.P.
( I can't remember where I heard this first but I saw it on a blog recently and decided to resurrect it.)
FYI - We Eat This Shit Up.

...I'm so happy I decided not to do the half marathon! I'm looking forward to jogging through my 5K and going back to the car for a thermos of Hot Cocco and a large winter coat. Steve, Pharmie, Jeremy, Jen...I'll come back and take some photos. I'm not planning on my race being fast, I'm going for a leg workout tonight and a spin class so tomorrow will just be fun. No pr's no traget times...just a jog. Does anyone use that word anymore, jog? When did the world switch from jog to run?

Jog: to run or ride at a slow trot b: to go at a slow, leisurely, or monotonous pace

Run: to go faster than a walk ; specifically : to go steadily by springing steps so that both feet leave the ground for an instant in each step

I mean they both fit but in my head jog seems more relaxed than run.

Anyway...on to P90X

I've had another half good week. I once again kicked my butt with the Chest and Back workout. This time I wore my heart rate monitor and you will never guess what my average HR was....162. That is kind of high for lifting for me. Immediately after a set of push ups or pull ups my HR would be closer to 190. That is like I was running at a 7 min/mile clip. My average HR was above that (162) for the whole workout because I did intervals on the treadmill prior to the push ups and pull ups for an hour.

Yesterday I whooped through the Shoulders and Arms workout. I did almost drop a weight on my head with the last set of over head presses, that was scary. The gym was packed but I somehow managed to get there and someone was leaving their bench in the middle of the free weight section just as I was walking in. I dove on that thing and grabbed my weights and started to induce pain. It is only the 2nd week of the program (3rd week I've been doing these workouts but I'm taking off days for cardio) and I'm seeing improvements in my numbers. Both for the last workout and this workout. Push ups - number has went up, pull ups - I'm using less weight on the machine that 'helps you up', curls - I'm fighting through more reps, tris and shoulders - I've added more weight to each of the exercises.

I am totally loving these workouts! They are just fundamental exercises that work major muscle groups. It is nice to have such a variety of workouts to do. Not all of them work well with cardio days (i.e., Legs and Back...50 min of mostly squats and lunges) but it is just something to plan around. I think these workouts might stick with me for a while. I'm enjoying picking which workout I want to do on days I run/bike/etc. If I had tried to follow the program 100% I might have already quit it. Too intense for what I'm looking for.

With the overwhelming support for me to do a triathlon this year I will probably have to start some swim training to please my readers. :P I'm looking forward to doing a sprint tri or two. Who knows, depending on how the swimming thing goes you might find me here towards the end of the summer. One place you will not find me competing, The Lifetime Fitness Triathlon. It is $140 to register, then the $10 or the USAT 1 day membership. I mean...I could do 3 other races for the price. Lifetime - knock it off! You don't really offer any swag. You do put on a well organized race but stop dipping into the average man's pocket book so you can attract a few more pros we will never see after the gun goes off. And then you will be announcing their names when I am less than half way done.

Does anyone want to put together "The Average Joe's Triathlon"? Everyone is welcome...athletes will organize it so we have everything set up the right way. There will be no prize money, prollly some average joe prizes (drawn at random). Bike lube, Tech wear, GC to LBS, etc. Maybe a BBQ afterwards. Just a thought.

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One Question >>>>Look at the sidebar

To Tri or not to Tri, that is the question.

As most of your regular readers know, I am not a triathlete. Most of you know I'm currently kicking my butt with P90X. I can barely find time to fit in some running and biking with the mass amounts of soreness that accompany this program. Could I fit in pool time? Can I get into the pool, besides splashing around on vacation? How much swim training do I need to knock out a sprint or two? The other kicker is that I'm starting dance lessons with the gf this week. So 1 night a week might be completely blocked off for that. So much training to do already and I just keep adding more stuff. Again

So...to Tri or not to tri?

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I've been tagged

Irondiva tagged me...here is how it goes: go to your 4th folder (where your pictures are stored - On the Dashboard page of Blogger, at the bottom, click on Picasa Web Album - this is where all of your uploaded blog photos are stored) and find the 4th picture….and post it. Then explain it. And tag 4 people.




I believe this picture of Steve and myself warming up before the Joe Plant 5K this spring.  We both PR'd that day, it was a great course and went to a really good cause.

I tag Steve, Ironmin, Formulaic and Brooke.

Next lets do a little P90X update...on the day I was going to do the Legs and Back workout I forgot to bring my sheet with the exercises.  I had the Chest and Back workout with me so I did that workout after a 2 mile warm up run.  This was the workout that sent my heart and lungs in over drive last week and I had to give up early.  Well, same thing.  This time I made it all the way to the end.  I started my last set up push ups...I almost fell flat on my face and then...so then I had to give up.  My arms were dead and I was running out of gas.  I was starting to feel sick and running low on energy.  Eventually I got a recovery drink and some food and felt much better, after I almost puked in the shower at Lifetime.  Speaking of which...I put that in the poll on the right side, have you worked out so hard you've puked?  

Today I opted for a spin class then jumped straight into the Legs and Back workout.  It was rough!  I spent 40 min doing lunges, squats, a few pull ups and then back to lunges and squats.  I HURT!  I can't wait to try this workout on fresh legs.  I was soo weak at the end I could barely lung or squat with good form.  I'm going to take whatever tomorrow gives me.  I'll either run, do the Kenpo DVD with the program or just do the X Stretch DVD.  

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OUCH!

OUCH sums up the last few workouts!  P90X is nothing but hardcore.  I wouldn't consider myself the most out of shape but I haven't done a ton of lifting or really anything but running and cycling the past 12 months.  Getting back into lifting if fun for me.  It is a different kind of adrenaline.  The Plyometrics workout was nothing but intense.  It is go go go the whole way.  My average heart rate was in the 150's and there were plenty of times when it was in the 180's.  Jumping, squatting, jumping from this side to that side, just moving all over the place an hour.  I woke up the next day with that deep burn in my hamstrings.  


The next day I did the Shoulders and Arms workout.  That was a good workout!  Just tons of curls, upright rows, shoulder flys and triceps extensions.  I didn't wear my heart rate monitor to the gym that day but I was soaked through my shirt when I was done.  Today I did my FIRST attempt at yoga.  I say attempt because I was shaky, falling over and looking confused.  The Yoga X dvd is a really good program.  I had an armature yoga attendee with me and she said it was a hard yoga workout.  The first 40 min was the hardest.  At that point we were like, lets make it to 1 hour and shut it off.  It got easier after that and we ended up doing a bunch of balance posses and stretching with a 7 min ab workout.  Again, no heart rate monitor but sweating like mad and my legs burned.  

One thing I really love about these dvd's is that these are real people.  Tony Horton (the trainer) can walk around the room with the cameras following and others in the workout are shaking, struggling or he is correcting their form, giving tips on how to make the exercise harder or easier for us.  I really like that. 

Something else I decided is that I'm not going to do the program in 90 days.  I can't!  My arms are in a constant state of soreness and pain lately.  I'm not used to lifting with this intensity.  I'm hoping within a week or two I'll be back into shape and I can do a lifting workout every other day.  But in my mind it isn't going to be the end of the world if I don't finish it in 90 days.  Having days off from lifting and making some more time for cardio (i.e., running and biking) is also important to me.  

I'm looking forward to this week!  Tomorrow is Legs and Back, then we move into a high energy kick boxing /tai bo workout called Kenpo X.  Wednesday is going to be Spin and X stretch.  Wish me luck as I continue to kick my butt.

Have a great week everyone!

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New years Resolutions

So who out there made a new years resolution? I didn't, it is futile in my mind. I would rather make a life change than try to better myself in this area this year. By March most people don't care anymore anyway. If you belong to a gym, and have been there, you've noticed an influx of cars and people at the gym. I went to the gym to start my first P90X workout on Monday and couldn't get on a damn thing. It was ridiculous, waiting for a pull up spot, dumbbells, treadmills. After 20 min of waiting for equipment I gave up and went into the spin studio for a while. I had this feeling of being defeated. It was really demoralizing, I was super pumped up the whole way to the gym and as soon as I saw the parking lot I knew it was going to be hell. I'm glad people are getting motivated to change their life and work out some, but make it a life change and do it regularly. If they did there would be demand for more/larger facilities and there wouldn't be as much waiting as there is (well was for me Monday). Should us regulars get priority? One could argue not becuase we all pay for the use of this equipment but feel like I shouldn't have to rearrange my life becuase someone wants to come to the gym for a month or two.

Anyway, on to the good stuff. I decided to go to the gym later (7pm) on Wednesday and start my P90X workouts. It stinks going that late, at least for me, that is my usual dinner time. Wed. I had to snack twice in the afternoon to get me through my workout. When I got there it was still busy by the weights so I hopped on a treadmill for a few miles, man that seemed to take forever! I haven't been on a treadmill in about 10 or 11 months and the time passed sooo slowly. After that I went to scope out the weight area and I could get some dumbbells, pull up machine (since I'm fat and can't do more than 3/4 of a pull up) and some floor space for push ups.

The first workout is Chest and Back.
It goes something like this
...

  1. Standard Push-ups
  2. Wide Front Pull-ups
  3. Military Push-ups
  4. Revers Grip Chin-ups
  5. Wide Fly Push-ups
  6. Closed Grip Overhand Pull-ups
  7. Decline Push-ups
  8. Heavy Pants
  9. Diamond Push-ups
  10. Lawnmowers
  11. Dive Bomber Push-ups
  12. Back Flys
  13. Repeat steps 1-12 in a different order
  14. Then Ab RipperX
I gave myself 2 min per exercise ( I think the dvd gives 1 - 1:30)...this was to do the exercise, write it down and rest for 20-30 seconds. By the time I was on my second time through I was breathing really hard. Eventually I couldn't slow my breathing so I had to call it a day. I sat on a spin bike for 10 min, really easy, half hyperventilating. This program is going to kick my butt! And I love it for that. I'm pretty sore today, I've had worse but seeing as I only did 3/4 of the workout I'm pretty satisfied with my soreness. It was one of those lift your arms to shampoo your hair and your arms hurt and shake from raising them.

Today is 30 min on the trainer and 60 min of plyometrics and tomorrow is Shoulders, Arms and Abs (looks more intense than Chest and Back). Wish me luck!

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Happy New Year!

I hope everyone had a wonderful Holiday Season!

I just want to let everyone know that I've been transferring all my bloggy stuff from my 'work' computer to my SWEET NEW personal computer. I'm trying not to miss any rss feeds for any of you, wish me luck.

Because life seems to happen alot lately P90X didn't start on Jan 2nd. I did get in the fitness test and even with all the holiday pounds and lack of motivation lately I met all the min requirements for doing the program. I'm looking forward to braving the New Years Resolution'ers at the gym in the coming months as I do some of the workouts at the gym. I have a bike, tredmill and Chuck Norris approved Total Gym at home but no free weights or place to do pull ups so those workouts are going to be done at the gym. I've put a few of those workouts on my iPod so I can glance at the small screen and switch to the next exercise. I've 'flipped' through a few workouts and think I'll be able to easily flow from exercise to exercise since they are all pretty routine after you do each dvd a time or two.

Now, lets look forward through 2009.

Steve recently posted about his 2008 and 2009 and something struck me in that post. "Workout with a purpose." I have not done that lately and I'm about to start! I did all summer, I had goals for most of my workouts. What do I want to get out of this run, bike ride, etc. With P90X giving me new focus and no excuses for not going to the gym I'm ready to get back on that train. The Holidays are over, I enjoyed them fully and my snug pants show it.

While I rock the P90X program I'm going to really try to get in some running and biking. The half marathon I was planning on doing this month is out. I'm just not in shape for that, I know I could finish it, but the last time I tried to train for a half marathon in a month I hurt myself. I might do the 5K associated with that race though. I'd like to get in at least 1 race a month. This would probably be comprised of 5k's through the winter, some duathlons in the spring, a few half marathons in the summer, maybe a century ride or two and possibly a late season marathon. I've been invited by a cousin to join her and her husband for the NYC Marathon this year. I wouldn't have to start training until August so that would give me plenty of time to get full use out my bike, something I missed last year with my fall marathon.

I still have my friendly competition with Pharmie for the fastest half marathon. Stakes still haven't been discussed, but I plan on kicking her butt and hopefully going from 2:00:00 (my pr) down to 1:45:00...yes I just typed that, 15 min pr. Keep working the Dome Running Pharmie, you're going to need every min of it.

With that being said my theme for 2009....BRING IT!

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