Saturday, September 6, 2008

Palouse Sprint Screw Yourself.



Yeah, OK, more about the title of this post later on. Well, I was on the fence about coming down to race this one. Like I said, I'll be giving updates on my Kona Ironman training, so let me talk about that first...

Wednesday: arrived back from Poland on Tuesday at midnight, horribly jet lagged and constipated from a steady diet of meat and cheese for the previous 7 days. Swam 1500 and ate lots of fiber.

Thursday: Swam another 1500, 500 w/u with 5*200 hard efforts. Felt strong in the water, like bull.

After my swim, I aqua jogged 12*60 sprints. This means you attach a big foam belt to yourself and run in the water. Typically, you will be joined by a couple elderly patients with a bone density so low that their femurs snap if they happen to stomp on a spider.

My knee felt touchy, but good. Then I went back to the office and lifted for 30 minutes, a "total body" body weight/Gymstick workout with a couple of my clients.

Finally, I rode 20 minutes indoors before heading home from work, and messed with my bike on the trainer; adjusted seat height down 1 centimeter to de-stress injured IT band/hamstring. Also, I shortened my cockpit (No "that's what she said" jokes please) by another centimeter by sliding my aerobars back, in an effort to reduce a bit of low back strain in a position that may have been too stretched out most of this season (20-20 hindsight, right?). Ultimately, I felt decent in this position, but my knee angle changed from 30 degrees to 32 degrees, and really, closer to 25 degrees is better from a power standpoint, so once I beat the IT band inflammation, I'll bring my seat height back up.

Friday: Swam another 1500, 500 w/u with 20*50 hard efforts. Actually ran (like real running, not in the water) 10 minutes to the pool for this one (but I did wear my foam aqua belt because it's sexy). Running back to my office, my knee became incredibly painful within 5 minutes, and I walked most of the rest of the way. CRAP! And I'm supposed to race the Palouse Sprint Triathlon Saturday morning. The remainder of Friday, I worked at my office, but kept my knee wrapped in ice, then did infrared treatment with my Kenkowave and did 30 minutes of electrical stimulation. When I went to bed, my knee was throbbing, so I wrapped it to decrease swelling.

So that was this week's training!

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OK, so you're probably still wondering about the title of this post.

I woke up Saturday morning and decided to try to race after all. But while driving to the race, in Moscow, Idaho, I accidentally *sat* on my way cool TN sunglasses and somehow popped a screw out. These were not the indestructible ones, but a different brand I've been wearing in time trials (The Shadow).

Well, I don't want to put out an eye while racing. Imagine if I hit a little mosquito or something. I could go blind! So I got this little microscopic Philips screwdriver and fixed my sunglasses. For those of you familiar with triathlons, you're always running around transition doing a million things before the race, and I realized after fixing my sunglasses that the screwdriver was nowhere to be found!

I was confused.



So I found the race director and told him to keep his eyes open, because I had dropped this teeny-tiny, deathly sharp tiny screwdriver on the ground in transition, and I didn't want someone to puncture a foot or a tire. These little screwdrivers are pretty damn sharp...

...and then I moved on to the race start. By the way, I hold the 2007 course record here with a 50:01. This distance is a 500m pool swim, a 15K bike, and a 5K run...

...just immediately before the swim, I decided to take one final pee...

...so I pulled down my shorts, and there, cradled inside my bike chamois and directly nestled between where my balls would rest, is the tiny little screwdriver...

YIPES!

I couldn't even feel the screwdriver lying there. But yes, just imagine, I could have lost my manhood and truly screwed myself upon leaping onto my bike. As soon as that hard saddle hit the screwdriver resting in my little pantaloons, there would have been some seriously puncture and leakage problems. And they don't make CO2 cartridges for fixing that.

Hence the title of this blog post. Thanks to that last-minute pee, I'm lucky to be...ballzed.

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OK, back to the race.

After shoving a knee brace in my T2 bag (last minute stupid decision to try it in the race without having tried it in training) I hopped into the water and had about 200m to warm-up. Then one big breath, and I shoved off the wall. I drafted the whole time off this highschool swimmer dude. We triathletes have to face the humbling fact that all highschool swimmer dudes are fast. My swim cap fell off at after about 5 laps, and for those of you who have seen my hair lately, that's some pretty damn good drag I created with that mistake!

Came out of the water 2nd and didn't look at my watch. All I knew was that if I wasn't going to be able to run fast, I'd have to ride hard. My wife photographed me from a scooter...





Based off my estimated splits, I was 2 minutes ahead of my nearest competitor coming off the bike, but I had no clue how my body was going to run. I might need that full 2 minutes and them some if my knee acted up...I pulled on the brace and went sprinting out of T2...



At the run turaround, I took another split and I was 3 minutes up. I really had no clue how my knee was doing, because the brace just kinda almost numbed everything, almost like when you stick your tongue on a battery, or when you accidentally rub muscle-warming salve on your crotch.



So here I am coming up to the finish line, and guess what? I actually won with a new course record of 48:22, beating last year's time by over a minute and a half. So, boom, there ya go. Screwdriver in the crotch, brace on the knee, loosy-goosy swim cap - my new racing secrets. And maybe all that Polish meat and cheese did the body good.

The knee felt OK when I stopped, but as soon as I took the brace off, it felt a bit dicy, meaning a little inflamed and a little sore. So hopefully I didn't screw myself figuratively after escaping a literal self-screwing. I'm supposed to throw down a half IM training session tomorrow, so we'll see. One things for sure - I'll wear that brace on the run!

Cheers. Let's see if I can squeeze the word "self-screwing" into next week's blog. I may try to race the Black Diamond Half Ironman on next Saturday, and defend my race title over there...



P.S. Swim this afternoon should be fun...my reward for racing hard...

1) 500m warm-up
2) 3 times through a 5*150 set of
-Water polo ball swim (swim while keeping a water polo ball in front of your face)
-Pull buoy
-Medicine ball swim (hold a med ball between your legs)
-Hand paddles
-All out 150 freestyle
3) 10*12 meter elastic band tube sprints (tie elastic band to waist, and other end to dive platform)
4) 500m cool-down
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