Thursday, August 2, 2012

The Road Trip

I started my road trip on July 10th and hit the road with Alex to my Dad's place in La Luz, NM for a night. It was an easy drive and I was glad we made it there early in the day.

Day 2 we drove from La Luz to my Mom's place in Novato, CA which is about 20 miles north of San Fransisco. That was a grueling 18 hour drive but I'm glad we made it in 1 day. Day 3 was pretty much a rest day that involved watching Spider-Man with Alex and picking up Norma in  Oakland. Day 4 Norma, Alex and I went to San Fransisco and bumped around Fisherman's Wharf and we finished the day with pizza at my favorite pizza place Round Table Pizza. It was soooooo good. Day 5 and 6 was super fun as Norma and I went to Napa to enjoy wine tasting. I never knew it would be so much fun. We also bought 2 cases of wine while we were there. Day 6 ended with my Mom cooking a massive feast for me and my brother's family. It was great to spend a few hours with Joel, Laura and my super sweet nieces Emily and Haley. Day 7 Norma and I went back to the Wharf for a little bit before she had to get back to the airport in San Fransisco. After I dropped Norma at the airport my mom and I took Alex to Sacramento to spend time with his other Grandmother. Day 8 my Mom and I went to Blue Lake, California where my Grandfather lives. He his almost 95 and it was really nice to see him and one of my uncles. That was super long day, Day 9 my mom and I went to Golden Gate park to take some pictures of the bridge. It  was such a nice day. (Pics will be posted later). Day 10 and my last full day in California was non eventful. I went to Sacramento to get Alex. We was flying from Oakland to Houston that afternoon. The day ended with my Mom and I having dinner and enjoying some wine. My trip to California was very enjoyable and it was great to see everyone.

Day 11 was a tough day. I drove from Novato, CA  to Salt Lake City, UT. This was a long boring drive. The day ended with me picking up Norma at the airport to enjoy the next 5 days of our road trip. Day 12 was a busy day. We started with a drive from Utah to Idaho. In Idaho we stopped at the Yellowstone Bear World, a drive- thru bear park. I initially didn't want to stop because we were on a schedule but I am glad we did. The animals walk right to the car and were able to get many great pictures. After we left Bear World we briefly drove through Montana where we entered Yellowstone Park. Shortly after entering the park we entered Wyoming. We spent most of the rest of the day at Yellowstone. The park is such a site. The wilderness, waterfalls, hot springs and of course the geysers we something else. The last site at the park was the Old Faithful geyser that blew her stack a little late but it was worth the wait. To finish out the day we drove to Cody, WY for the night. Day 13 we started early. We were driving to South Dakota. We hit Deadwood around noon. This is a town I have wanted to visit for a long time. Deadwood is probably most known for the place that Wild Bill Hickok was killed. We started our tour of Deadwood with lunch at the Gem. Anyone who watch the Deadwood TV show will know this place. After lunch we did a wine tasting and walked around the town. We ended the tour with a little gambling at Charlie Utter's Casino. We left Deadwood and went to Keystone where Mount Rushmore is. If you have never gone to Mount Rushmore you have to do it at least once. It is one of the neatest things I have ever seen. I could have probably stayed there all day. Pictures just don't do it justice. After leaving Mount Rushmore we went to the Crazy Horse memorial. This was neat but a major rip off. I wish we would have pulled off the side of the road to take pictures. After our brief stop there we drove to Ft. Collins, CO and began the trip back to my Dad's house. Day 14 we started to head back to my Dad's house but I did make a side track to Taos, NM where I was born. I wanted Norma to see Taos. I stopped by my Grandmother's house just to see how it looked and then we went to the Plaza for lunch and a little shopping. We then headed out on the road back to La Luz.

Day 15 I drove Norma around Alamogordo so she could see the town. (La Luz is outside of Alamogordo.) We had lunch in town, bought a few souvenirs and finished up with some wine tasting. My Step Sisters kids were spending the next few day with my Dad and Step mom. Day 16 we just relaxed. I had to take Norma to El Paso so she could fly back to Houston. The day ended with dinner, beer and a little TV. Day 17 I ran a few errands and then we we took the kids to the Elk's club to swim. My Dad and I enjoyed a few beers at the bar. (Ok I had more than a few). The day ended with me packing my stuff up and turning in early because I was driving home the next day. Day 18 was another long day of driving.  It took me forever to get home.

After getting home I still did a few things. The next day I finally got to see my favorite Superhero in action. The Dark Knight Rises was super awesome and then I had lunch with my cousin Sonia and her daughter Erica on Sunday. After that I have just been relaxing. I have really enjoyed my sabbatical. and still have 2 1/2 weeks left until I go back to work.

I have one my short trip that I will update next week. I have nothing big on the race front but my endurance is finally coming back. I'm feeling much better and I hope to be racing again soon.

Bye for now!

Monday, July 9, 2012

Sabbattical Weeks 3 and 4

Nothing to report for weeks 3 and 4 of my sabbatical. I've been taking it easy and doing some light training. I will be going on a road trip tomorrow and I will get to see lots of family and many parts of the country. I'm excited to hit the road and I will give a wrap up after I get back into town.

Bye for now.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Sabbatical Weeks 1 and 2

The first 2 weeks of my sabbatical did not go quite as planned. I am glad to be relaxing at home but I had a few days of work that I hope will pay off for my career long term. The one real nice thing is that its given me a chance to focus on my health and my new diet from Dr. Krupka. I am feeling much better and I am finally starting to lose weight. I will be traveling around the 10th of July and coming back into town around the end of July. I will be visiting my mom in California and my Dad in New Mexico and will be experiencing much of the country as well. When I start to travel I will provide more updates and photos of my travels.

As for the endurance stuff I am scheduled to do the Vineman Triathlon in July.  At this point I'm not sure if Vineman will happen. I have just recently been released to begin light endurance training in the last 10 days and have not done much yet. I hate to keep missing these races but my health and my injuries are the most important thing. I have so many setbacks that I'm nervous that I will have more if I ramp up my training too quickly. As for furture races I have the Disneyland 1/2 Marathon in September and a Sprint Tri in September that I'm already registered for. I'm not registering for anything else until I'm 100% better. This has been tough becuase there are things I want to sign up for but I just can't until I know I will be able to do the event. As always I'll keep you updated on my future races.

Bye for now!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

2012 Ironman Texas

With just over a week until Ironman Texas I am leaning towards sitting the race out. I have been super busy at work and unable to train at all the last few weeks. I did compete in the HITS Olympic Triathlon two weeks ago and had a difficult time racing. I was supposed to race the Half-Iron the next day but I was very ill and could not go. In addition to my lack of training I have a bicep, neck and back injury (the same from last year) that is also making it difficult train even when I have time. I'll make my final decision on the race this weekend but I think it will be tough to do. Going forward I don't think many Iron distance races are in my future. I'm very focused on my career and I'm excited about my future prospects at work. I do plan on racing Vineman in July and I'm sure I will do some other races during my sabbatical which starts in mid-June. As for what is next I plan on racing Tejas in June. As always, I'll let everyone know.

Bye for now.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Ironman 70.3 Texas

After weeks of thought I decided to participate in Ironman 70.3 Texas yesterday. I knew going in that it would be my slowest 70.3 and it very much was. I did the race severely under trained in all 3 disciplines but I was tired of missing races due to injury and illness and I felt that I could gut it out. I didn't begin training for the event until March 12th and I felt it all day. Here is the race breakdown.

Race morning was nerve racking for me. I was so nervous and I was wondering why I was doing this race. As I was getting set up in transition I had to keep reminding myself that this was just a day of training. I was not going for time, just finish. As I left transition and made my way to the the swim start I began calm down a bit and I started to visualize the start of the race. As I made my way over the bridge to where you have to jump in the water I knew I could finish the swim. I knew it would take a while but I knew I would finish. When the start horn went off I just went with a slow swim stroke. I didn't want to use too much energy in the swim. This was the part I was most concerned about. I have done very little swimming this year. In fact, I swam 3 times between March 12th and March 18th with the longest swim at 750 yards. I injured my right shoulder on March 18th at the Telfair triathlon and had to take 10 days out of the pool. I did get in a 2250 yard swim the Wednesday before the race and a 1500 yard swim the Friday before the race but that was it. But despite that I still felt like I could finish the race. As I hit the halfway part of swim I was really tired but I pressed on. I saw a lot of the swim waves that started after me fly by but I pressed on. As exited the water I was beat and I wondered if I could continue but I pressed on. My swim time was 57:56. This was by far my slowest time for a 70.3 swim but I didn't care. I was happy I finished.

When I entered T1 I took my time. I wanted to get everything straight before I got on the bike. As I started riding I could tell the wind was in my future. The wind on the front half of the ride was really slowing me. This combined with my fatigue was making me cranky. I was getting past up by everyone early on. I kept thinking this should not be happening but this is just for training. It doesn't matter. The one neat part of the bike portion of the race came at the 8.5 mile mark when I saw Lance Armstrong fly by. He was leading the race and was close to finishing the bike course as I was starting my 56 mile bike experience. After he flew by I just trucked on wanting to get to the turn around so I could get some relief from the tailwind that awaited me. At the halfway point I was 1:41:45. I knew this was slow but the headwind really slowed me and I knew I could make up some time with the tailwind. On the way back in the tailwind definitely helped. I was starting to pass some of those people who passed me earlier in the race but I was really getting tired. As I came to the end of the bike portion I knew I could finish the race even if I had to walk the entire 13.1 mile run course. My second half of the bike was faster at 1:28:11 and a total of 3:09:56. It was my slowest bike time for a 70.3 but not bad considering my longest training ride was 51 miles which came the Sunday before the race.

In T2 I was tired but as I said I knew I would finish. I started running right out of transition but it didn't last long. My legs were sore and I just couldn't keep any kind of running going. I saw Norma early on the run and she walked with me for a while. I needed the distraction from the pain. As I was running and walking my stomach became upset. I didn't workout my nutrition for the race properly and I was starting to pay for it. As I continued on I ran into Norma several more times. She was knack for getting around the race course. At any rate she walked with me several more times until I hit mile 11.5 and I decided to try and run the rest of the way without much success. I ended up finishing the run in 2:55:59. As before it was my slowest run for a 70.3. I still didn't mind. I finished and that is all that matters. My total time was 7:11:34. This is slower by 40 minutes from my previous slowest time. Considering my lack of training I will take it.

In order to contradict myself I have decided to make a run at Ironman Texas. 3 weeks ago I thought this was not going to happen. Until lately I have put zero effort into getting ready for this race. I was too busy feeling sorry for myself. I know it will be tough to get ready but I'm going to try. If I miss the race due to an injury or illness that is one thing. I don't want to miss it due to a lack of effort. My training schedule is busy and I have a week of travel for business in April but I think I can get ready enough to at least finish the race. I'll keep everyone updated on my progress.

Bye for now.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Telfair Triathlon

I haven't had much to report from my last post in January. My recovery has been most difficult and my training has been inconsistent at best. I'm still trying to keep moving forward with everything but it has been difficult. With that said I did my 1st triathlon in over 8 months. I did the 1st annual Telphair Triathlon in Sugar Land this morning and it was great to get back out on the race course. I don't have all the breakdown of times from each discipline but I finished the 500 meter swim, 12.6 mile bike and 5k run in around 1:25:00. I felt good, but tired and I am thankful that I was able to race.

With all that has gone on with me over the past few months I am considering dropping out of my next few races. (Ironman 70.3 Texas and Ironman Texas). I have not made any final decisions yet but I am leaning that way with Ironman 70.3 Texas just 2 weeks away. My training is getting better but I want to do these right and not create further health issues or injuries. I'll make a decision shortly and I let everyone know. This is a tough decision and I need to get it right.

Bye for now.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Road To Recovery

As sit I and write this post I am a little over 6 weeks from the throat and nose surgery that was supposed to correct several things and make me feel a whole lot better. I am just now starting to feel better after several set backs during my recovery. I am not sure if the surgery did what it was supposed to and because of that I have not been optimistic about my upcoming training and race schedule. With all that said I have a lot of work to do.

While I've been recovering I completely lost control of what it means to be an endurance athlete. I have developed a lot of bad habits, mainly from not being able to train. I've put on a considerable amount of weight, which is not good considering I was already way off my race weight. I also developed some even crappier eating habits and I just got real lazy. It has just been in the last week that I feel like I am getting my mojo back and I'm finally starting to get some consistency back.

As for upcoming events I am signed up for the Texas Independence Bike Tour at the end of January and a 5 mile run in February. As I start to get my endurance back I'll sign up for more, but I'm taking it slow for now.

I want to thank all of you who sent me messages after my surgery. That really meant a lot to me. The surgery and the weeks after the surgery were much tougher than I thought they would be and there were times where I wasn't sure if I would ever be able to the endurance events that I love. I still have some recovering to do but I am committed to getting on the race course soon.

Bye for now!