Thursday, February 23, 2012


When you're a triathlete, there are many people who are important in your journey: friends, family, significant others, dogs, mentors, etc.  Right after I signed up for IM CdA, I was lucky enough to find a mentor.  He's a great source of wisdom, smack talk and calls me out on bullshit and excuses.

Yep, I'm talking about this guy:

Last year when I was just starting out on the Ironman journey, I joined a mentor thread on BeginnerTriathlete.  It turned out to be very helpful.  We all exchanged ideas and training strategies and funny stories.  The mentor, Slayer, is crazy badass.  He's into insane volume and it works for him.  He's a reformed porkchop who's earned serious tri points, including a propensity for trying to scare the race director when he podiums (finishes in the top 3 or 4 of his division).  The thread has started up again and I'm on it, along with a few other people from last year and some new folks, too.  It's so nice to have a group of other crazies who love to talk about tri stuff.

One of the things Slayer asked of me was to post some lessons I learned from my last IM.  This is what I wrote:

Yes, IM #1 was a great eye opener.  This will be a brutally honest assessment.  Here is a list of things I learned/changes I need to make:
The Swim:
  • must swim much, much more!  I really don't care much for swimming, but I need to make myself do this.
  • my IM swim was pathetic (2 hours) and miserable.
  • Starting in January, I'm going to start swimming with the UCSD masters' team.  Swimming with a masters' team helps me so much.  Unfortunately, once things start going well, I tend to convince myself that I can swim on my own.  Then I start slacking again.
  • Lessons!  I have a swim coach picked out for a few lessons to help my stroke.
The bike:
  • Last time I trained on my own. Entirely.  That allowed me to ride slowly, skip rides, start rides too late so I couldn't fit in all the mileage, wuss out on tough rides, etc.  This time, I formed a team, called Team Badazz, with whom to ride.  Several of the team members are much faster than I, so I've been improving already.  My average speed is up around 17mph now, and that's with a lot of climbing.  My goal is to do 18 mph + for Vineman.  It's also much more fun to ride with my team.
  • No shying away from hard rides!  We've been doing some tough rides.  Just conquered a 7 mile climb a couple of weekends ago.
  • I need a new bike.  Yes, I know it's the engine and not the equipment, but I rode the ish out of my bike and it's old.  I have my eye on a couple of bikes (and the cash set aside) and will purchase next month.  My old bike had a couple of mechanical issues that killed my ride last year (including the shifter falling apart and then I couldn't shift for about 45 miles).  Kinda proud that I wore that bike out 
The Run:
  • Not so worried about this.  I was a runner before I got into tris.  My plan is to follow my Be Ironfit plan for this.  Also will be running with Team Badazz.
  • Need a new plan for tri shorts--I had a wicked case of baboon butt after CdA.
  • This year I will do some peak runs in the heat.  The avg temps in Napa are around 90-95+ in July, so I need to be prepared.
In general, I just need to be much more hardcore and train a lot more.  No more slacking!  I know you all will help keep me accountable 

The common thread to all of this is that I need more volume (of course, I've already altered some of the above plans so I'm more hardcore).  Slayer has been saying this from day one.  I didn't listen last season, but I'm listening now.  I'm ready to prove what I can do.  I'm well on my way to having a great season and look forward to seeing the volume pile up.  See?  No excuses!

So, thanks mentor thread and big thanks to the big Slayer man!  Hope to race with you again soon.

1 comment:

  1. I also came to this same realization at the end of last year, I need more volume and it was tough for me to admit cause I felt like I trained lots! I am planning my first IM in 2013!!!