Monday, January 31, 2011

January Totals: This is only the beginning?!?!?

If only I was riding outdoors, this could have been one of my most voluminous months on record!

My coach is pushing me already! And yet, I don't feel overwhelmed by it all. Strange, eh?

Swim: 35,300 yards / ~12 hours
Bike: 337.2 miles / ~20 hours (all on the trainer.....{face palm})
Run: 116.59 miles / ~17.25 hours

Never have I ever swam or ran that much in a single month. Never have I ever biked that much in a month on the trainer. Still not even close to what I did last May on the bike.

So my coach has me using heart rate on the run. Usually I go by RPE and sometimes pace depending on the workout description, but I discovered something VERY interesting yesterday as I was looking at January's 4 long runs. My average heart rate was the same, but my pace dropped (except for the last one, which was the longest run).

So the four runs break down as:
Jan 9: 1:30:48, 10 miles, avg HR 149 BPM, 9:04 pace.
Jan 16: 1:28:03, 10 miles, avg HR 151 BPM, 8:48 pace.
Jan 23: 1:30:08, 10.59 miles, avg HR 151 BPM, 8:30 pace.
Jan 30: 1:45:00, 12.17 miles, avg HR 149 BPM, 8:37 pace.

The first run was while I was on the cleanse, the other three were during a period that I was eating FOOD. Still, I am seeing progress there. Same heart rate, but faster paces and going longer.

Another thing that I am dealing with is that these long runs are at the very end of the week, so I am dealing with accumulated fatigue before I even start this run! This explained yesterday's longest run and slightly slower pace. Thank goodness for Mondays, as that is my "take it easy" day. This one day of "taking it easier" really sets me up for the rest of the week. This also makes me wanna rest up for a week and hammer out a Half Marathon and see what will happen.

So I can't believe that the first month of Ironman training is over with already! If I am putting up this kind of volume NOW, what the F am I going to be putting up in May and June when I am in the thick of Ironman specific training?!?!?!?


Oh and I need to give a shout out to James @ He had the BEST quote that he snuck into a comment from yesterday's post.

"No one runs the marathon at the end of an ironman - you survive it."

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Now THAT was a weekend of getting $%!# done! And I found a replacement.

This weekend marked the end of week 4 of Ironman training. Wow has January flown by! Gonna do a January totals post in a couple days.

So Saturday I did my last Saturday AM swim workshop with my coach. ~3,000 yards later we finished up the swim with 5 x 50 all out set. EVERYONE was struggling. You could hear the groans and heavy breathing after every 50 and you could see the anxiety on everyone's face with the inevitable of another 50 coming. Let's just say I have nicknamed my coach "Slave Driver." He sure knows how to work ya!

After I got home from the swim workshop, it was 2:20:00 on the trainer followed by a 3 mile run. The 3 mile run was not a good one. My legs were feeling it.

This morning was the top of the peak of the week. This week alone has been a big one, giving me just under 14 hours of efforts. I had a 1:45:00 run on tap which yielded a 12.17 mile run. It was not one of my best runs to date and my legs felt flat and like crap the entire time. I kept reminding myself: "JUST WAIT TILL YOU GOTTA RUN THAT LITTLE `OLE MARATHON AFTER THAT 112 MILE BIKE. YOU THINK THIS FEELS HARD?!??!?!?!"

This run put me back in place and made me swallow my pride. I am proud of the fact that I ran 32 miles and swam over 10K yards this past week. I biked just over 100 miles on the trainer, but who knows how accurate that is. Sure was a hard 100 miles!

So I found a replacement for Cinnamon Toast Crunch. For those of you who don't know, last season I was eating a box a week of that stuff. It was my rocket fuel! But after eating probably 20 or so boxes of that stuff last year, I kinda got burned out on the stuff and the milk made me feel bloated. I would eat 3 huge bowls of it before a long ride. It worked! But the above started to disagree with me, especially my taste buds.

I have been experimenting with oatmeal (not the instant kind). I have figured out a base recipe with which I can add any fruit to it. It is yummy, simple. easy to go down, doesn't disagree with me, and provides plenty of energy. Did I mention its yummy?

1/2 cup Quaker oats
2/3 cup water
2 lumps white sugar (or sweeten to taste, or use honey)
dusting of cinnamon
1/2 peeled & diced granny smith apple OR a cut up banana OR cutup strawberries OR a mix of any of the three

Combine water and oats (and if using apple, the peeled diced 1/2 apple), cover with plastic and nuke for 90 seconds. Add two lumps of sugar and dusting of cinnamon and stir to combine. If using banana or strawberries, add with the sugar and cinnamon.

I like the consistency it makes. Yeah it uses plain white sugar, but you are going to use it as fuel immediately so who cares. One bowl, depending on the fruit you use, will yield about 250-300 calories of energy. It is quite filling which is another good thing. Just gotta watch out with the fiber from the oats, so I will only eat a max 2 bowls.

Hope you had a good weekend!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Interesting! My resting heart rate

So last night I slept with my heart rate monitor on and recorded it overnight. I am always curious what my resting heart rate is.

Its 43 bpm....of course this means very little, other than my heart beats 43 times a minute when I sleep. I should do this again in another 4 weeks and see if there is any change. What do they say? A lower resting heart rate is a measure of better fitness? So lower compared to what? Again, will have to remeasure in 4 weeks.

I honestly didn't sleep well last night, and it think it shows with all of the craziness going on, especially that last hour or so of sleep. Looks like I ran up a freaking mountain and came back down before I woke up. Of course, I must have woken up just before I crossed the finish, right? Dreams never let you win! haha!

We got pummeled with a ton more snow last night. We didn't get snow until Valentine's day one year. This week alone has been three mornings in a row of snow and delays. I am used to this snow up in New Hampshire where I grew up, but over the last 5 years of living outside of NYC, I have NEVER seen this much in these parts in one season.

Winter, its been great, but its time to leave now....

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Is 6 months a long time for you? Or is it just around the corner?

Who is it that said time is relative? Einstein?

Can we add an amendment to that? According to Triathlon?

The other day I popped onto the Ironman Lake Placid site and noticed on the countdown that it said 180 days left until race day. Crap! 6 months!

Yes, this is for all of you 201Ironman'ers going for Placid.

Wait a sec, 6 months is half a year. Thats TONS of time!..........right?

Well, I guess that depends on what is going on in 6 months. Are you training for a 5K? 10K? Half Marathon? Marathon? What about a Sprint? Olympic? Half Ironman? Ironman?

What about your current level of fitness? Does that have an impact on if 6 months is short or long?

For me, 6 months is a long time from now, but also not a long time. Its a long time because we got 1-3 inches of snow yesterday, another 2 this morning, with another 5-8 inches tonight. July 24th means the middle of summer, and right now, we are in the middle of winter. Different seasons, friends.

But its also not a long time. I think this has to do with the anticipation factor. You WANT to be in the best shape of your life come race day, but also I think you want to be in the best shape of your life right now so as to get that part over with. (Please don't do that, you can't hold that fitness for very long!)

I think this post is mostly reminding me of starting over from scratch. 3 weeks ago, I had barely ridden my bike in 4 months and lost a lot of super-confidence-bike-fitness. Now its rebuilding that fitness. My run base was there, but speed wasn't. Or so I thought my run base was there. I am relearning that that old base was cool, but it ain't gonna cut it for the type of endurance that I will need in 6 months. The swimming has been there, but again, knocking out 2.4 miles and still feeling fresh ain't happening for awhile.

So what about you? Are you freaking out yet? Or are you calm?

I am somewhere in the middle, mostly just wanting to get to race day to accomplish something HUGE!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Running in a snowstorm. Maybe not the best idea, but SO worth it!

I probably did something stupid this morning by running in a snowstorm, but thankfully I picked some roads with little car traffic (which was my biggest worry).

After doing 60 mins on the trainer I looked outdoors and there was just a dusting with nothing coming down. So I looked on the radar and saw this HUGE blue blob approaching my area. Whatever, maybe its virga?


5 mins later when I step outside, its coming down pretty hard. Well, I got myself out here, so I might as well stick it out.

I had to do a 56 min run this morning, with 10 min warmup, with 18 x 2:00 intervals, followed by a 10 min cool down. It was easy, 2:00 hard, 2:00 easy, rinse and repeat 9 times. I finally tinkered with the Garmin Training Center software and programed out the workout so that the watch just beeped at me a bunch of times when an interval was ending or beginning and then the watch told me what to do next.

It was really nice!

And running in the snow wasn't too bad either. Yeah, I thought my face was going to freeze off, but it was kinda peaceful at the same time and I felt way more accomplished after the run knowing that I just ran almost 7 miles in a snowstorm.

So my coach is kicking my butt. Things are really starting to ramp up. I am swimming 4 and riding 4 times this week, and running 5. Three bricks included. Mostly the bricks are for time management more than anything. This morning was a brick just to get the workout done and over with. I feel pretty good after two hours!

Last night's swim was long but we did it fast. 3100 yards in 55 mins, with some rest included. Coach made others lead so I drafted. Drafting is cheating! I felt like I was taking 10 strokes per 25 because I would glide and catch the guy in front of me. I hope he wasn't getting ticked at me for hitting his toes. Thanks for the draft!

Here is a good 3100 yard workout if you need one. Its a pyramid main set.

300 WU (100 free, 100 single arm, 100 free)
200 cruise
2 x 50 hard, 5 secs rest
400 cruise
4 x 50 hard, 5 secs rest
600 cruise
6 x 50 hard, 5 secs rest
400 cruise
4 x 50 hard, 5 secs rest
200 cruise
2 x 50 hard, 5 secs rest
100 CD

Sunday, January 23, 2011

How I Improved My Swim, Part 1: Balance & Rotation

A house is only as strong as its foundation, right? Is that too trite or colloquial? Whatever, I like the analogy.

Your balance in the water is your foundation to a good stroke. Without it, forget what your arms are doing and kiss speed goodbye.

I call good balance in the water good body position, or being as horizontal as possible and as high in the water as possible. It all comes down to hydrodynamics, the water version of aerodynamics. Like punching the smallest hole through the wind on the bike, you want to punch the smallest hole through the water with your body. Having your legs drag or your butt hang low is like adding a parachute to the end of your bike. Drag is your #1 enemy!!!

So to develop good body position in the water, here are some drills that I used and still use to find my place in the water. Now get ready to kick! But NO FINS! I like fins. They are good for certain applications, but when trying to find body position, it is cheating, and you are only cheating yourself by using them. The name of the game here is to float horizontally without using any aids (pull buoys, kickboards, fins).

If any of you have used TI (Total Immersion), then these will be very familiar. I guess these drills are so good that they are widely used by TI and by swim coaches. These were first shown to me by my old coach, and then I saw them again when I watched the TI DVD. Trust me, they work.

#1) Floating.
Lay onto your back in the water and try to float without sinking. Don't kick, just float. Try to get yourself as flat as possible, like laying on a flat board:

4 years of art school got me this drawing....

Now experiment with tucking your pelvis in (like you are doing a stomach crunch), and your chin to your chest:

Even with a strange contorted spine, you are still horiztonal.
Your legs will eventually drop (first @ the knees), but maintain this float for as long as possible. The pelvis tucking and chin tucking will be used for later drills, but it is what keeps your legs up and your chest up. This is the position you want. It feels like you are resting your center of gravity more on your pelvis and back, right? Anchor points in a way?

Experiment with arching your stomach up and see what happens:

No good, right?

How much faster did you sink with an arched back? Did your legs drop immediately?

Which position worked better for you?

#2) Kicking on your back, arms @ side. Pelvis pointing straight up.
This is the most basic kicking drill. Like you were floating still, you want to tuck your pelvis in, tuck your chin, and kick from your hips. DON'T bend those legs @ the knee!!! Keep your feet flexible. You should feel a good burn in your upper thighs and hips. Remember to keep that pelvis tucked!

#2A) Instead of arms @ side, have either one arm streamlined above your head, or have both arms streamlined above your head.

#3) Kicking on your back, arms @ side. Pelvis and body rotated 30-45 degrees. Head looking straight up.
This is just like drill #2, except your whole body is rotated 30-45 degrees. This will teach you to find a balancing point on the side of your hip and in the shoulder area. Remember to kick from the hips. Its a bit harder in this position and it is easier to break @ the knees. Don't try to lift your head! Keep it tucked to your shoulder. Lifting your head will make your hips drop.

#3A) Instead of arms @ side, have your below the water arm extended above your head. You will rest your head on this arm while keeping your chin tucked.

#4) Kicking on your stomach, arms @ side. Looking straight down. Press your chest.
Flip over and stick your face in the water. Keep your arms at your side and press your chest into the water. Over-exaggerate this position. You want to feel like you are swimming "downhill". Pressing your chest will pop your hips to the surface, which is good! Lift up your head to breath. Lifting your head will make you sink, so give yourself a few seconds to regain your balance and pressed chest position. Take some rest after this one as it makes you hold your breath longer. Remember to kick from the hips!!!!

Press that chest!!!

And now for rotation, the 2nd part to balance.

So the above four drills with variations are for locking in a stable balance. With swimming, you aren't just laying flat on your stomach and swinging your arms with some kicking. You are constantly rotating your body. You NEVER want to be in a flat position. You always want to be rocking your body side to side. Think of it this way. You sit down in a rowboat, but you have no oars. You need to move to get the boat moving forward. How would you do this? You rock the boat! Amazing how it suddenly starts to move forward? Same is true with your body in the water.

But what do you use to rotate your body? Well, the whole body is obvious, but there is one part of your body that has more say than other parts. Since you are anchoring yourself with your hips, you want to rotate that anchor. ALL of your rotation power should come from the hips. Your body will want to use the shoulders (because it is easiest), but that is inefficient. Why? Because that is like trying to spin a potted plant by its leaves. The best way to turn the potted plant is by its base, or its pot. Your hips are the pot and your shoulders are the leaves.

One final thing, think of a 10 foot pole going straight through your body. This pole is what you are rotating along. Keep your body rigid (but not tense) when you rotate. You don't want to fishtail or go limp while rotating.

Here are some rotation drills that build upon the static balance drills:

#5) Hip rotation, arms @ side, facing up.
This drill will involve drills #2 & #3 list above. Instead of staying in one position (either straight up, or angled to one side) you will rotate using your hips from your left side to the middle to the right side in one fluid motion, pausing for a few kicks on the side. Concentrate on using those hips. I would do three kicks on my left side, then rotate to the right side, do three kicks, then repeat. Try to gain that sensation of rotating from the hips. You could do a variation and quickly "snap" from one side to the next. This "snap" is something you will want to incorporate into your stroke.

#6) 90 Degree rotation
This is when the drills start getting hard. I even struggle with this one, but it helps. Trust me!

Start out by doing drill #3A listed above. Now rotate 90 degrees (using your hips to drive the rotation) until you are now 30-45 degrees facing the bottom of the wall of the pool (not completely face down). Now rotate back to starting position. The trick with this drill is to NOT lift your head! As soon as you lift your head your hips will sink and you will swallow a bunch of water or it will go up your nose. Did I mention this drill is a bit more difficult? To make sure you don't lift your head, make that rotate from facing down to facing up quick, especially by driving those hips! Stretching your body out and being as streamlined as possible helps. Remember there is a pole going straight through you and you are rotating along that pole.

#7) Face down rotation
This drill is the same as #5 listed above, except you are facing down. Remember, arms at your side! This is an uber hard drill, but if you can master this, you got yourself some incredible body position, balance, and rotation. I call this one the graduation drill. Rotate back to facing up every three rotations to breath.

#8) 90 Degree Rotation, arms @ side
This is an easier version of the #7 drill because it is the same drill as #6, except your arms are @ your side. This is also an uber hard drill. Remember to rotate from the hips!

Now if you are having a hard time discovering that "sensation" of what proper hip rotation feels like, I would suggest one drill and one pool toy if all else fails.

#9) Kicking with kickboard between the legs
Swim normally as if you are swimming with a pull buoy. Except swap out the pull buoy for a kickboard. Make sure the kickboard has more board in the water than above the water so it acts like a deeper rudder. Work those hips, rocking them side to side making sure you feel the kickboard's resistance against the water. Now take away the kickboard. Does it feel suddenly easier to rotate through the water? THAT is what proper hip rotation should feel like.

If this doesn't work, I would suggest the Finis Hydro Hip:

If this doesn't do the trick, then you must be over thinking it! haha!
HERE is my review for the Hydro Hip. I had a pretty good "eureka" moment this past fall after using it for 30 seconds. This sucker works! But read my review for proper use. Its a pain in the ass to use.

So now how do you incorporate these drills into a workout? I usually do 25 yard drill, 25 swim and think about the technique that I was practicing. For example if I just did 25 yard pressed chest drill, I would swim normally for 25 yards thinking about and incorporating the pressed chest. For drills that involve a left side and right side, do 25 drill left side, 25 swim, 25 drill right side, 25 swim. I usually do 4 of these 50's for each drill, or for each side. You can seriously do a long workout if you do everything listed above!

I hope this helps! Wow this turned into quite the loooooong post! haha! The above drills made me go from my first half mile open water swim of 20+ mins to 16 mins in my first season. Yes, just better balance and rotation shaved off that much time. Email me with any questions or leave a comment below.

Happy Swimming!

.....and rotate from those hips!

*Disclaimer* - I am NOT a swim coach. This is merely me verbally vomiting out my successes in the pool and how I was able to lop a HUGE amount of time off of my swimming pace. Take this with a boulder sized piece of salt!

Friday, January 21, 2011

How I Improved My Swim, Part 0

You should have seen me exactly two years ago in the pool. I was taking my 2nd swim workshop and I swore I was getting slower. I actually WAS slower than 6 months prior! How the heck did that happen? I seriously (I am not joking here) could NOT swim 4 lengths of the pool without being completely oxygen deprived. I wasn't some beginner in the pool. I could swim 1 mile straight (not fast) 6 months prior!

So why had I gone backwards with my swimming?

I was improving.

Wait, what? Doesn't that kinda contradict itself? Well, sorta. But swimming itself is like the evil step child of triathlon. See with running and biking, you can just make your legs go faster and your body WILL go faster. Unfortunately with swimming, windmilling your arms faster can more than likely make you drop like a rock to the bottom of the pool.

That all boils down to efficiency, right? How can someone who is only taking 12 strokes per 25 yards be faster than someone who is taking 30 strokes per 25 yards? That 12 stroke person is more efficient than the 30 stroker.

So back to how I was improving but yet going slower. My form/technique was getting better, but my muscles were so used to swimming WRONG that it was a foreign dance for my muscles to be swimming the right way, hence why I would tire out faster.

Eventually it all balanced out and my body got used to the more correct technique and in the long term, I swim a LOT faster than I used to. Faster as in I used to swim @ a 2:00/100 pace, and am currently hovering @ a 1:30/100 pace.

Three things got me swimming faster:
1) Balance
2) Front Quadrant
3) Swimming Faster

I am going to go more in depth into each of the three in separate future posts. This is also a review for myself as I quickly forget the importance of #'s 1 and 2. But here is an overview.

1) Balance - This how your body is positioned in the water. From a side view, are you horizontal? Or are your legs dragging? How is your body rotation? Without good balance in the water, you can forget what your arms are doing and how fast you are going. You gotta be able to float!

2) Front Quadrant - What are your arms doing? How is this interacting with your balance and rotation? How is your catch? Pull? Follow Through? Recovery? Entry? Most of my propulsion comes from the Front Quadrant. Balance will keep you floating and reduce drag, but your Front Quadrant will make you move forward (I don't use kicking as propulsion. I like to save my legs).

3) Swimming Faster - You aren't going to swim faster without swimming faster. Unless there is something I am missing?

So I am going to do three separate posts including drills on the topics listed above. Stay posted!

*Disclaimer* - I am NOT a swim coach. This is merely me verbally vomiting out my successes in the pool and how I was able to lop a HUGE amount of time off of my swimming pace. Take this with a boulder sized piece of salt!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Scotch! Celebration

Ok, I lied. I will mention the cleanse one more time: THE celebration of finishing it.

NYC has a gem of a lounge tucked down in the bowels of Tribeca and just catty corner to the Ghosterbusters firehouse.

"There is something strange..."
 This lounge is called The Brandy Library. It is THE go-to place for spirits. These people ARE the encyclopedia of spirits. You wanna try good spirits? THIS is the place to go! The History Channel came here for info on the history of Whiskey. Nuff said?

My running buddy, Belden, and I tried a flite of smoky Scotch, mostly from Islay. Of the 6 that we tasted, 4 stood out, especially 2 of those.

Longrow 10 - smooth smooth smooth. If I had an extra $100, I would pony up and try the 18 year old.


Laphroaig 18 - DAMN! That is all I can say about it. I bought a bottle the next day....


Ardbeg Uigeadail - Sometimes in life, you want to try something just before you expire, else everything after will be nothing but a letdown. THIS Scotch goes into that category. Apparently the Ardbeg 10 is just as good...if not better....we would take a sip, sit back and just let it do its magic for a solid two minutes. No, you aren't paying top dollar for a few ounces of liquid. You are paying top dollar for the liquid and the experience that follows....


Lagavulin 16 - it was a mystery Scotch. They didn't tell us what it was till afterwards. Its good, but should not have been tasted after the Ardbeg. Remember being letdown? Yeah, the Ardbeg basically made anything taste as bland as water...

Then we had some eclairs paired with some brandy, Marie Duffau Hor's D'Age. This brandy by itself I am sure is wonderful. But that Ardbeg just kills anything you try after it. You couldn't follow up Sinatra on stage could you? You can't follow up Ardbeg.


Last, we were treated to a sample of some Mezcal. Mezcal is the family that Tequila belongs to, just like Cognac belongs to the Brandy family. All Cognacs are Brandys, but not all Brandys are Cognacs. Same thing with Tequila and Mezcal. All Tequilas are Mezcals, but not all Mezcals are Tequilas. So the Mezcal we were treated to, no joke, had they told us it was a smoky Scotch, we would have believed him. This Mezcal tasted JUST like a Scotch! It is smoked Agave heart, smoked in a brick oven before being fermented and distilled.

If you ever find Los Danzantes Mezcal on the shelf, BUY IT!

I think I mentioned this in a previous post, but with Triathlon you kinda limit yourself with certain foods since being lean only helps on the bike and especially on the run. But you know what? Sometimes you just have to enjoy the greater things in life and not miss out on opportunities to sample some of the finest liquors in the world!

So TAKE THAT cleanse! haha!

Monday, January 17, 2011

THE Cleanse wrapup. Lessons learned

This will be my last post on the THE cleanse, a 2 week crash diet to make you learn of your bad eating habits and to show you that eating clean is not a bad thing, even when you are an endurance athlete. I did this for 12 of the 14 days and lost over 7 pounds.

Lesson #1: Your body has a LOT more energy than your brain thinks it does
You know those love handles you have? Do you know how much energy is stored in those suckers? A LOT! By day 8 or 9 of this diet, I had fully shed any morsel of refined carb in my body and was going solely on veggies and meat and fruit. That day I had to run for 90 mins. I woke up, and hit the pavement. No pre run fuel. No during run fuel. Either I was going off of the glycogen from previous days veggies, or I was digging deep into my fat stores. I had sustained energy during that run. No pep, but just sustained energy. I finished the run and still didn't feel hungry. I had a few other workouts where the same thing happened. I just had this slow burning energy and hunger wasn't an issue.

Lesson #2: Refined carbs wreck havoc on your blood sugar
Ever notice that when you eat some white bread that it makes you feel full, but only an hour later or so you are crashing? And that trend continues through the day? Even with some protein you still feel those violent ups and downs. I noticed that when using veggies and salad for carb sources, that those ups and downs (yeah, they still happened!) were not as violent. The height of the waves were much shallower.

Lesson #3: Protein is cool, but veggies are cooler with protein
One day I had this genius idea of eating steak and three scrambled eggs. Basically protein and some saturated fat. It didn't fill me up and gave me ZERO energy for a later workout. I had similar meals, but had loads of steamed broccoli or asparagus or green beans with it. The veggies and protein working together filled me up, kept my filled, AND provided energy for later workouts.

Lesson #4: Refined carbs are not a bad thing
I can eat a flour tortilla, some peanut butter and banana and be ready to rock ANY workout within 60 mins. Refined carbs are convenient and fit into a lifestyle where you need quick energy. Yeah, you need to watch it with the types of foods, but they work with me and I notice that I really only NEED to eat them when there is a workout coming up. I hate eating slower absorbing foods and waiting 3-4 hours for them to kick in.

Lesson #5: Refined carbs can be a bad thing
One thing I noticed while off refined carbs was that I wasn't getting sleepy during the day. I was less tired. Yes, I had zero pep during my workouts, but I had sustained energy, especially at work. I wasn't falling asleep in any meetings! The refined carbs that I normally eat I notice give me jet fuel like energy, but like jet fuel, it burns much quicker, meaning I tire out quicker after a workout is done.

Lesson #6: good fats are good things
So eating grilled lean meats and lots of steamed veggies is a really healthy thing, but the flavor just isn't there. Eating like that is also missing out on a macronutrient: FAT. Nuts, avocado, olives are forms of healthy UNsaturated fats. Those foods I noticed helped keep me full and were less gross to consume than saturated fats like bacon. Oh how I love almonds, avocado and olives!

Lesson #7: salads can fill you up
I would always eat salads as just lettuce, cucumber, some carrot, and a dressing. THAT never filled me up. I learned that by loading it with olives, avocado, peppers, chickpeas, spinach, snap peas, AND especially lean grilled meat with an olive oil and vinegar based dressings with some pepper can keep me full for a LONG time. And this isn't some small salad. This is a BIG salad! Now finding variety in these salads is the trick.

Lesson #8: Paleo is too restrictive
I get the paleo diet (no grains or dairy or beans). The diet totally makes sense but I find it too restrictive for my food pallet. I LIKE the taste of bread. I am not a pro triathlete. I am an amateur and this is my hobby. Yes, I always want to get better and leaner, but I still gotta live! Booze is not a bad thing. I LIKE the taste of alcohol. I am not going to become a monk and deny myself these wonderful things in the world. Just don't go too crazy with it, right?

Lesson #9: Water is a cool trick
Water was my saving grace. I had to drink 100 oz a day. The first few days I was running to the bathroom every 15 mins. By day 5 I wasn't sure if I was drinking enough. Sure enough I was, but not peeing as often and still felt thirsty. Truest me, it still left my body, but drinking 100 oz a day is not a hard thing and does wonders for your energy levels. It kept me balanced! Drinking water during meals, and especially after meals "finished" off my stomach. It tricked my stomach into thinking it was fuller than it really was. This helped turn down the hunger monsters and allow me to eat less.

Lesson #10: salt turns you into a sponge
Can't remember which day it was, but I was adding salt to everything. And I was drinking 100 oz of water. Let's just say I kept drinking but I wasn't peeing like I should have. I felt so bloated! The extra salt that I had made my body retain all of that water.

Foods that really got me through this diet:
  • apples and peanut butter (#1 snack!)
  • grapefruit and oranges (can't get enough of em!)
  • berries....blueberries, blackberries, and ESPECIALLY cherries!
  • almonds and peanut butter
  • roasted asparagus and roasted green beans
  • olives (oh how I LOVE thee!)
  • avocado
  • grilled sirloin steak

I would recommend this cleanse. I would say 10 days is probably enough. 14 and you are not only going crazy but also eating out with others can be a bit restrictive. I learned that I need to drink more water and to limit my refined carbs to pre workout fuel only. This will satiate my appetite for this food group. Eating grilled lean meat and roasted or steamed veggies will become my usual dinner. This does provide enough energy for the next morning, just not that night. Takes a bit longer for green beans to make it to the muscles @ glycogen.

This was a great jump start to the season.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

What happens when I eat some friggin food!


I called it quits to the cleanse Friday night. Mentally, I was ready to.....I don't know. I couldn't take it anymore! I finished the cleanse on three scrambled eggs, three thick slices of bacon, blackberries, and a clementine. All Paleo legal, btw! The bacon was NOT cleanse legal, but who cares! It was a GREAT dinner!

The cleanse was a success. I'll do a future post on lessons learned, but losing 7+ pounds in 10-12 days I think is a mission accomplished.

So Saturday AM I woke up @ the crack of stupid and was in the pool an hour away by 6:30 knocking out 100 after 100 after 100 with my coach. It was a great workout of 3150 yards. I ate, get this, a flour tortilla, with peanut butter and a banana as fuel for the swim. Both my first flour tortilla and banana in almost 2 weeks. Oh my god I felt like Popeye!

After the swim, it was 1:45:00 on the trainer followed by a 3 mile brick run. I ran it in 24:33 for an 8:11 pace. I haven't ran a sub-9 pace since before the cleanse. I felt awesome! Totally alive now that I had decent energy.

This morning was a bit tougher on the legs. I ran 10 miles in just under 90 mins. I was very sore from Saturday's efforts. I haven't felt this kind of soreness since the end of summer, so that means one thing: training is picking up and getting consistent. It feels good to be back riding and running 4x a week and swimming 3x a week.

I am very happy with my run volume, but I am still a bit concerned about my biking volume. I won't lie, I lost a lot of bike fitness over the past 4 months. Riding 80 miles on the trainer this past week was a lot harder than I felt it should have been. Either riding the computrainer IS harder, or my bike fitness just isn't there. I am going with the bike fitness is still a work in progress. Can't wait to get back outside though in a few months! On the mental side, riding outdoors for 90 mins goes by a LOT quicker than on the trainer.

Hope you had a great weekend!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Days 9 -11:Cleanse....another drop, but NOT in energy!

Haven't updated in a bit, but I'll be brief:
Day 9: AM weigh-in: 143.8 (new low)

Another drop. I am down almost 7 pounds in 8 days. I am definitely noticing a body composition change in the mirror. My stomach is significantly flatter AND I have a TON more energy!

Last night I swam and felt like a normal human being with normal human being energy. Then this morning I did the same 5 miler with 10x 20 sec hill repeats as last Tuesday. Other than sore legs, energy was not an issue. I even finished the run 30 seconds faster this time.

I am starting to smell the end of this! This Saturday I have a big swim with my coach then I need to run 90 mins afterwards. Worried about fuel, I asked my coach and he responded with "eat a whole grain bagel with peanut butter."


It was the same as him telling me to eat a bowl of ice cream. WOW! I am getting worked up about eating a freaking bagel! haha!

I had a slight low from the fruit, but by lunch I really didn't need to eat. I ate anyways, but after a chicken breast, some steamed broccoli, and some olives, I was good! Those olives......MAN! I love olives....

This is how I came to love olives: I was in Provence, and someone offered me an olive, so I ate it. I thought it was the most vile thing ever known to man! I HATED it!!! Then a year or two later I was eating at a restaurant somewhere in VT (Simon Pearce?) and I suddenly was craving olives. I have been hooked ever since. Kalamata are my favorite.

Dinner was the same steak and salad with the amazing Dijon vinaigrette from last week. Probably the easiest day yet!

Day 10: AM Weigh-in: 143.6 (new low)

I thought I had eaten a ton of food yesterday. Guess not! I dropped a bit lower. Down almost 7 pounds! We got socked with another 12 inches of snow last night. No biggie, I was on the trainer anyways today. Just did 60 mins.
Day 11: AM Weigh-in: 142.6 (new low)

Woke up and ran 7 miles. WHAT a difference a week makes! I had some sore legs this morning, but energy was not much of an issue. My last two runs have felt human again!

Ate a yummy dinner, then hit the pool. After 1500 yards I had ZERO motivation to continue. Just wasn't happening tonight...

The cravings are really killing me right now. Today @ work a coworker was 5 feet away from me and I caught a whiff of his hot chocolate that he was drinking. I think I freaked him out a bit when I asked him if he was drinking hot chocolate. Yes, my nose is UBER sensitive for sweets right now!!!! I can't stop eating fruit, since that is the only allowed sweets.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Day...... (eh, screw it) lets do something different! Race music!

I am halfway done with the "cleanse" which is turning out to be a paleo diet with even fewer restrictiosn. Ok, that is all I writing about it for today! *shutting up*

So at all of the bigger races that I have done, there is always pretty cool music at the start line that gets you REVVED UP!!! and ready to KILL!!!! The finish line music usual makes you feel even more accomplished.

So let's talk race music!!!

For a starting race song, this song, Mozart's  Requiem Mass in D minor, would be downright creepy and would make you feel like you are diving into your death. (cool song though...)

I started Timberman to freaking Coldplay's The Scientist. I like Coldplay every now and then, but NOT as I am heading off to battle! A couple dudes embraced......

ACDC's You Shook Me All Night Long would probably take the cake for my #1 get your blood-pumping-lets-rip-some-arms-off start music.

So now finish line music? Ok, let's be totally predictable and pick We are the Champions by Queen. But I'd rather go with another Classic Rock band and have Journey's Don't Stop Believing instead. Its always my favorite song to close out a night. Why not close out a race with it?

If you could pick your start line music, and your finish line music, what songs would they be?

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Day 7: Cleanse...suprise energy and halfway there

Today's workout was a 90 min steady run, or a 10 miler.

Pre run weigh in: 147 (again!)
Post run weigh in: 144.6 (new low)

I don't drink anything during my long runs in the winter since I am not thirsty. I also did the entire run on no fuel, before or during. So that 2.4 pound loss was totally through the 1000 calorie or so energy expenditure (less than 1/3 of a pound) and the rest through sweat loss, though I didn't feel like I was sweating hard. It was 30 degrees, a bit windy, and super dry and sunny, so most likely the sweat just evaporated as soon as it came into contact with the air.

So this run proves that you can run for 90 mins or more on nothing, AND on a no refined carb diet. Other than getting bored and anticipating the end of the run, I had enough energy to stretch it out to a half marathon if I had the motivation.

I also had some energy this time! I didn't feel flat, but I didn't feel peppy, I just felt "normal" for once. Last night's dinner REALLY did the trick. Here is the run:

I ate the usual breakfast, but I was out of cherries (boo!) so I polished off the blueberries (yay!). I didn't wait too long before I scarfed down an apple with all natural peanut butter with salt (yay!). But I was still hungry....I had to GET OUT of the apartment. Just thinking about food was making me hungry! Not eating any solid protien before lunch really kicks my butt. That is the #1 thing I am looking forward to after this experiment: Eating protein and lots of it @ all meals. ESPECIALLY eggs with breakfast! (cravings anyone?!?!)

Went to Whole Foods to get some groceries (including cherries!) and bought a pre-made meal of chicken and roasted vegetables, including POTATOES! I haven't eaten a starch in 7 days. Potatoes are not a grain. So I cheated a bit and ate some fucking roasted red potato cubes. I felt SO guilty!!!!!

This held me off and reclaimed my human status again. Then I was good for the rest of the day.

Dinner was chicken marinated in a really yummy Greek dressing recipe given to me by Kevin @ IronmanByThirty. Thanks Kevin! I made roasted green beans on the side.

This again totally filled me up. I survived the weekend!

Only 7 more days to go...

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Day 6: Cleanse.....OoooooouuuuuuuuuuuuCH!

This morning was a total suffer fest. So I first want you to watch this:

My legs didn't hurt. My whole body was just giving me the OUCH in terms of energy. What is flatter than flat? Is there such a thing? If there was, I was it.

But first, AM weight in: 147 again.

Then I had my usual breakfast of grapefruit, cherries, blueberries, and an orange.

So I was on the trainer for 95 minutes, doing a HUGE number of intervals going from 1 min @ 150 watts to a variable time of 180 watts. Now, those numbers aren't huge. But remember how I have been complaining of being flat all week? That 180 felt a LOT harder! And the fact that I was doing it over and over and over again ranging from 4 mins to 1 min was just sapped what little energy I had to begin with. With 10 mins left, I was just waiting for the BONK. It never really showed up. That fruit breakfast did little for fuel....

I got off the trainer and was shaking so I ate an apple with peanut butter (salt added!). OMG it was heaven!

But this was merely something to calm my stomach down for a 3 mile brick run. It seriously felt like the run from my first triathlon. My legs were SO weak! Walking down the stairs was even hard!

Amazingly during the final mile and especially @ the very end, I had some energy and felt normal again (besides the usual hungry stomach).

So I am seeing a trend. I am hungry a lot during workouts, which I always thought I was out of energy, but in fact I do have energy, but I am just hungry.

Ate the leftover steak and salad for lunch. Then I took a short nap. After the nap I woke up and felt like a freaking zombie. I was HUNGRY. I mean, HUNGRY HUNGRY HUNGRY!

@ 4 I couldn't take it any more and had two hard boiled eggs, and another apple with some peanut and almond butter. I sorta felt human again...

Then we went out for Mexican. I got the steak, chicken, and shrimp fajitas. OMG I felt human again! I only ate the meat with the grilled veggies and onion with guacamole and pico de gallo. I CLEANED the plate! Tough watching my girlfriend eat fried ice cream right in front me....

Today was another hard day, diet wise, and probably as hard as Wednesday when I had similar hunger pains.

Tomorrow should be interesting...

Friday, January 7, 2011

Day 5: Cleanse....a GAIN!

Went to the pool first thing this morning and put in 2500 yards. Easy logistical workout: 500 WU, 5 x 100 on 2:00, 5 x 300 on 6:00. The 100's were slow today, coming in between 1:32 and 1:34. The 300's were slow, holding just under a 1:40 pace. I felt SO flaaaaaaaaaaaaaat. I had NO speed in me today! Frustrating too looking @ those times on the clock! The pool IS GONNA GET IT once I get some proper fuel into me!

Then it was 20 minutes of strength. Again, felt soooooo flaaaaaaat.

Then the AM weigh in: 147

a 2.2 pound gain in 24 hours? I remember thinking I wasn't drinking enough water yesterday because I was so thirsty and I wasn't peeing. Then I remembered what I drank yesterday and I think I exceeded the 100 oz goal. But I still wasn't peeing like crazy like the first 3 days. I think my diet yesterday had more salt in it (i added it to my salad dressings, veggies, the olives had it) and that made my body retain the water. Based upon what I ate yesterday, it was NOT a large amount of food.

I spread out my breakfast again. It worked and I really didn't need to eat that last orange, but I did anyways since I had to give a presentation in front of some corporate folks.

My mid morning snack was an apple and some unsalted peanut butter. Ever wonder why peanut butter is sooooo good? Yeah, the HUGE amount of salt added. This stuff tasted basically flat, but at least it was salt free. I really want to shed my body of yesterday's water bloating.

Lunch was yesterday's dinner leftovers. I bought a tiny salad just in case this wasn't enough food, but I had to force myself to finish everything. I never ate the salad.

I was like, oooookay. That wasn't much food.

Then I wasn't hungry for the rest of the day. 2nd day in a row....

@ Dinner, I could eat, but I wasn't starving. We had a salad with beats and an AMAZING balsamic vinaigrette with Dijon mustard, shallots and honey and grilled sirloin steak. Finally, some flavor!

So here is my theory as to what has happened this week so far:
- days 1-3 were my body revolting due to the lack of sugar/grains/refined food, hence the crazy blood sugar swings of up and down
- days 4-5 have been my body has adjusted, and I am no longer seeing blood sugar rises and falls as extreme now that my body is no longer dependant on the processed sugars, grains, etc. I am therefore much more steady
- I think my stomach has shrunk. I can't put down much food anymore

So tomorrow and Sunday will be the interesting days: long workouts. I have a 100 minute bike for tomorrow AM, followed by a quick run for a brick. Sunday is a 90 min run.

So I feel like I have been cheating with this diet. But I look at the type and amount of food that I am eating it isn't much! At least I don't think it is much.

SO this is what it is like to be paleo. (no grains, no dairy) Other than feeling flat during workouts, it is a totally doable diet/lifestyle. I have really had to think harder about eating different foods from my normal diet. Like eating salmon, shrimp, turkey, steak, and chicken all in one week with different vegetables and salads is new to me. Usually its one or two different meats a week, like chicken or beef.

I think if I ate a piece of chocolate right now that I would die of shock....haha!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Day 4: Cleanse. Another drop, but more energy

AM weigh in: 144.8

2 pound drop in 24 hours (down 5.4 pounds in 4 days)

I ran a slow 7 miles this morning in something like 1:04:xx. I was very worried that I would bonk at any moment. I had the energy, but definitely not the pep. I am really surprised that I was able to run that long on what felt like an empty tank. I was SO hungry the entire time! Running up hills pretty much sucked.

So because I crashed so quickly after my breakfast yesterday, I stretched it out this morning. It worked! I had the grapefruit, then went to work and ate the cherries, then waited a bit and had the orange then chugged a glass of water.

Felt pretty good after the AM snack, which was an apple and some almonds.

By the time I had my big salad @ 1:30-ish, I wasn't ravenous. Oh, and I have always loved Olives. But now I REALLY love olives! Why? Cuz they have FLAVOR! I have felt so flavor starved as well since Monday.

Hopefully Yesterday (day 3) was that hump to get over and my body is finally getting used to this diet. Has my body kicked the sugar/grain dependancy?

When I got home for dinner, I wasn't very hungry, other than for some giant green olives (so good!) and some kalamata olives. But I knew I had to get some extra food into me otherwise I might eat it (pun intended) tomorrow.

Tonight I had sauteed shrimp in olive oil with garlic and red pepper flakes. On the side was sauteed zucchini and baked asparagus.

Small portions. Wasn't very hungry!

So Jeff @ DangleTheCarrot did a review of Anti Monkey Butt Powder back in June. By that time I was mid season and my butt could take any ride/any distance/any time on the saddle. So I thought it was a neat review and stored it away into my subconscious.

Fast forward to NOW, and since I have been riding not much at all, and only on the trainer, my butt can't take sitting on the saddle for very long. Fortunately I had a little sample pack of chamois creme, but that was ok and there wasn't much of it. THEN I remembered Jeff's review! I could just run across the street to CVS and pick up a bottle. Before I left, my girlfriend told me, "Does that come in a yellow bottle? There is a bottle of that stuff that has been sitting there for almost two years under the bathroom sink."

Ooooooooohhhh, NOW I remember it. I thought it was a gag gift from Christmas two years ago! haha! So, thank you forgotten family member who got it for me. It will surely be used this winter!!!


Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Day 3: Cleanse....holding steady, but STARVING!

My weigh in this morning explains everything. I held steady @ 146.8 which means that the sudden drop in the first 24 hours was in fact just my body shedding that initial water volume.

This morning was spent on the trainer for 60 minutes. I broke out some chamois cream for the first time. I think it helped! I had enough energy to get through the workout, which included a lot of one leg drills. Staying in the aero position was a bit easier this time around. I don't care if my bike fitness is not at 100% in April, I just want to be able to stay in the aero position for the entire ride like I was able to do this past season.

OH! If you aren't using a fan cooling you down on the trainer, GET ONE! Riding on the trainer IS harder than riding outdoors, especially if you want to hit the same wattage #'s as riding outdoors. I notice that while I am generating less watts indoors, my heart rate is signifigantly higher than when riding outdoors, when I am pushing more watts, but at less effort. Ever wonder why? READ THIS. It explains it pretty well.

Using a fan this morning did help a lot.

The food cravings haven't really started yet, other than eggs for breakfast, which are not allowed. I can have eggs later in the day, just not for breakfast since only fruit is allowed. I am sure more cravings will show up in the next two weeks. My supervisor on Monday brought in a HUGE box of cookies to our Dept Meeting. Everyone turned into vultures and all I heard was, "MMMMMMMMM! Cookies! Jelly!" *chomp chomp chomp chomp* "MMMMMMMMM! Chocolate! Granola!" *chomp chomp chomp chomp*

I felt like a vegetarian Lion watching the pack devour a poor antelope...

By 11AM, I was RAVENOUS! I ate an apple with two tablespoons of peanut butter. I was literally licking the spoon clean to get all of the peanut butter. I basically already crashed, this didn't help much, and I crashed further.

@ 1 I ate more turkey breast, brussel sprouts, steamed broccoli, and half an avocado. FINALLY I felt like a human again. Except now I needed this to fuel a swim.

The swim was good, but I cut it short to only 1500 yards. I did 500 WU, then 10 x 100 on 2:00, and held a consistent 1:31 for the first 5, and 1:29 for the second 5. I held a STEADY pace the entire time. Just cruising! Any form of a pickup I felt would put me over the edge and send me bonking. I got back just in time to eat two clementines and down a glass of water. I think I managed to hold off a bonk.

I think a lot of the food intake and starvation feeling is mental since this is a total diet change for me. I am hoping this day #3 is the final hump and my body will adjust.

By 6:30 it was dinner @ the Cheesecake Factory. That menu is so HUGE that it is easy to find something. I got the grilled salmon with steamed broccoli and had to swap the potatoes (boo!) for some asparagus. Having to give up that bread was hard. I LOVE their bread! I killed the entire plate and was STILL hungry! After another glass of water, finally my blood sugar evened out and I was good. Watching someone eat the bowl of strawberries with whipped cream killed me. No fruit other than breakfast. GAH!

I hope tomorrow is was rough.

So have you seen those balance shoes which are the new fad now? You know, those shoes that have the rounded bottom which is supposed to work those stabalizing muscles in your legs to get your butt toned, lose weight, etc etc etc. I have even seen sandals in that design!

 Well, apparently people are now suing shoemakers cuz they aren't working as advertised and will even injure you! *hangs head in disgust* REALLY?

Sorry folks, sounds like the huge marketing campaign worked; you bought the product and drinking the kool-aid didn't work. There is no magic pill to get your butt in shape! You still gotta sweat a bit....

Anyways, my rant is over.

Have a nice night!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Day 2: unexpected suprise

Thank you everyone for your comments about yesterday's Day 1 Cleanse post. It really wasn't that bad at all, like most of you observed. I think I got myself all mentally worked up that I was going to starve myself. Not the case apparently! It was just getting through the morning where I was starving by noon and after that HUGE salad @ 1:30, I was good for the rest of the day.

In fact, it seems like I ate a LOT of food yesterday, which I think was the case.

And the result? This morning's weigh in:  
Surprise! Down 3.4 pounds in 24 hours. I was convinced I would have packed on a few just due to water and food intake. I officially hit the 30 pounds lost mark from January '08.

I have NO idea what that 3.4 pounds means, other than I am 3.4 pounds lighter this morning than yesterday morning. If I continue to lose 3.4 pounds each day, then I will make a big deal out of it. A Tri friend mentioned to me that single day weight loss of that magnitude is most likely water loss.

So this morning I ran 5 miles, with 10 x 20 second hill sprints included. The first couple were not that bad, then I felt as light as a feather during the middle sprints, then the last 4 or so had my lungs BURNING at the top. Overall, I felt flat, but I think that was more due to that strength workout from yesterday. My glutes are REALLY tight!

For breakfast, I had a grapefruit, handful of cherries, handful of black berries, and an orange. I LOVE cherries!

And do you know what today is? That last day of the mornings getting darker. For here on out, the mornings will only get lighter. Phew! This really helps me with running in the morning. The cold doesn't bother me, its the dark that really kills me. I HATE wearing headlamps!

For lunch it was Turkey breast with steamed green beans a salad with oil and vinegar with avocado, lettuce, chickpeas, cucumber, green pepper and cherry tomatoes. Avocado is getting tastier and tastier! This mostly held me over till 7, when I ate dinner. It didn't hold me over as well as yesterday's lunch salad.

Speaking of dinner:

Droid phone camera is WAY better!
On the plate is turkey breast, brussel sprouts, squash, spinach and onion. I had another 20 oz of water. I have been SO thirsty today! I think as of right now I am at 100 oz for the day. I'll prolly have another 20oz before tomorrow.

Tomorrow's weigh in should be interesting.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Day 1: Cleanse.....EPIC day

Woke up this morning feeling not hungry at all and full of energy. Hey, this won't be so bad, right? Weighed myself: 150.2 pounds @ 5'7"

Did 20-30-ish minutes of strength, and it was time for breakfast. I consumed 20 oz of water already throughout the strength workout.

So far, it has been a GREAT citrus season!
After the grapefruit and orange, I was pretty full. I really wasn't feeling the apple, but I knew that I needed to get it down to starve off the inevitable of feeling starved, or at least postponing it later. I downed another 10 oz of water before leaving for work.

Q: What kind of fruit do you eat that won't spike your blood sugar to the top of Mount Everest? (bananas are off limits)

I eat eggs EVERY morning. The protein and fats in them keep the hunger demons away from me better than consuming all carbs for breakfast. Unfortunately fruit is the only thing on the menu for breakfast during this cleanse.

After my 10:30 meeting ended at 11:30, I was hungry. Another apple with some Almonds was my AM snack. This tided me over for about an hour.

Another meeting @ noon, which got out @ 1, just in time, which had me not only running for the bathroom (my 4th or 5th trip this morning) but also for the cafeteria downstairs where, fortunately, on Monday's and Wednesdays the salad station is there.

Today they were making the asian salad with ginger dressing. It consisted of:
  • iceberg lettuce
  • snowpeas
  • baby corn
  • carrots
  • grilled chicken
  • ginger dressing
  • i added half an avocado
Sorry, I wolfed the thing down before getting a photo and realizing I should have gotten a photo, so here it is post-carnage:

such a bad photo!
So last night I was watching the Nat Geo channel on lions and how they kill their pray. The way they ripped apart the flesh on a water buffalo is the same way I felt when biting into the grilled chicken. I haven't been craving bready carbs or sweets; I have been craving MEAT!!!

I felt like a normal person again after my vampiric rage on the chicken. Amazing how avocado can taste SO good!

This salad held me over for a LONG time! As in I finished the salad around 1:30, and didn't eat another apple and almonds until 6:30 to fuel for my evening swim. Q: Was it because of the amount of protein in it? There was about a chicken's breast worth in there. Fats came from the dressing and avocado.

Another part of this cleanse, is to down 100 oz of water EVERY day. How much is 100 oz of water?

A 6 pack of 16.9 oz of water comes to be 101.4 fl oz of water. Yesterday I did a "wet" run and tried to drink 100 oz of water. As a result, I had dreams last night that I was peeing for minutes on end. I seriously had water on the brain!

Drinking water while eating or on a full stomach is a lot easier than on an empty stomach when I am starving. With nothing to absorb that water, I get all sloshy. Drinking because I am not thirsty is also not fun and my stomach aches.

So my biggest worry was not having enough energy for tonight's swim. Got in and did 100 easy and my arms HURT already. It wasn't an energy issue, it was leftover soreness from this morning's quick strength routine. See, if you haven't done ANY strength in a long time, it doesn't take much to nuke the muscles that you never use.

We did 2400 yards tonight and it was a suffer fest the whole time. I just felt flat. We did do a fun drill. You need a partner for this. You swim while you pull your partner. He/She is gliding on stomach with a pull buoy holding onto your feet and trying to elevate them. Your partner is not trying to resist, just the holding onto your feet is enough resistance. It was actually a rest since it didn't work you cardiovasculary. After the drill when swimming resistance free, I felt SO HIGH in the water and fast. Its a good "contrast" drill.

Got home, had some left over turkey breast and some squash and spinach sauteed in onion.

It was quite a day! Gonna sleep well tonight.....

Sunday, January 2, 2011

"THE Cleanse"

One thing that I have learned about my new coach is that he has ALL of his athletes do his "Cleanse" diet starting the first Monday or so in January to rid the body of "junk" accumulated over the holidays. When the opening line of this email is "Thank you for not deleting this email when seeing the subject line," I guess this shows that this "Cleanse" is a bit trying on the system, BUT! well worth it if you stick through it for the TWO WEEKS.

Sorry, I can't reveal the inner details of this cleanse, but I will mention that 100 oz of water need to be downed each day.

After analyzing the details of this plan, it is TOTALLY doable.....if I was a couch potato! haha!

What has me worried is doing workouts on less fuel. Well, since he is figuring out my workout plan, I have faith that all will be well with the energy factor.

Since this starts tomorrow, I guess I am going to go eat about 1 of these:


and 10 of these:

the 50 pound burger! (source)

Happy New Year!