Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Raisin Bran

I was grocery shopping last night and while in the cereal aisle I overheard a young man say "I am going to be healthy and get the Raisin Bran". Now, of course I was curious and I looked at the cart he and a young woman were pushing away and I saw cases of soda, bags of Doritos, frozen pepperoni pizza- in short a plethora of good old american processed food.

I try to be careful about what I eat and I try to only eat things with one ingredient- milk, eggs, chicken, broccoli, whatever it is but I try to stay away from processed food. Now, first of all I thought this incident I observed was really funny. I mean, is the Raisin Bran really healthy in the context of all the rest of the stuff in that cart? But then, maybe they were shopping for someone else? And maybe it is not up to me to make a judgment? After all, I can only control what I put in my body, not control or comment on others.

But what really got me thinking was the incongruity of the picture of eating his cereal and feeling good about it but the rest of the day is putting crap into his system. That is inconsistent with his "healthy" intent. What do I do in my life that is incongruent in the same way? Well, the first thing that came to my mind was cycling and this blog. I have stated that I want to RAAM qualify. That will necessarily entail a training plan, discipline, and constant working towards that goal. I feel that my actions (lack of discipline, haphazard training, chocolate every night after dinner) are not consistent with my stated goal.

It is the perfect time of year for this introspection. I wonder if more New Years resolutions would stay strong if we all could either recognize the incongruence in ourselves, or if we could have really valuable friends who point those things out- (only at the most perfect receptive time of course, preferably over a piece of chocolate ;-)

Anyway, just some musings, hope you enjoy. And, so I could have some consistency- even though it was 10:30pm last night- I got a couple of Graeme's workout in 5' in- core and loose. Here's to congruence and the best New Year of your life so far.

Monday, December 29, 2008

suntan at christmas and goals

I am so grateful to live in FL, this is the time of the year when it really makes living through July, August, and September worth it. I did a couple of commutes to work last week and checked to make sure all the new bits stayed on the commuter bike. I was sorry we are off for the next couple of weeks from the Computrainer class, but I have filled in the time.

I had hoped to ride across town for Christmas day with the family but it was pouring as I was just ready to leave so I gave up and drove. I was able to make up for it by riding almost 5 hours on Saturday and 2.5 yesterday. Great company, nice easy pace, no set route, just "which way do you want to turn?" and enjoy. I did put on my power meter on Saturday and was disappointed with the results but I also was not pushing and not doing real intervals. I usually do not care to ride by the numbers unless I am doing a structured interval workout.

So, I guess that means I am going to have to go do some hill repeats and work on that! And that is not easy to do down here. I do live in the middle of the state, near Clermont where we can find hills that are not overpasses, but Sugarloaf is still only 500' above sea level!

I also resolved to institute some more discipline BEFORE New Years so I was up and doing stretching this morning. I will do a Core workout when I get home tonight and work on getting semi prepared! The new brevet season starts here Jan 10 with a 200k and the Sebring event is Feb 14. There are 3 events- a 12 hour, 24 hour drafting, and a 24 hour non-drafting RAAM qualifier. I had hoped to do the RAAM qualifier but I know I am not physically ready and I don't want to set myself up to fail. I will however see if I can reach one of my goals which is 200 miles in 12 hours. 2 6 hour centuries are not bad- you just can't stop! Do 17.5 miles per hour and I can bank about 5 minutes an hour or something. Whatever, 200 miles in 12 hours. That is the goal! Let you know on Feb 15th. Happy New Year.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Ah life, why do we say it gets in the way when all we have is life? Is it because it is nicer than saying my family gets in the way? Or because they might fire you if you say my job gets in the way? OK, I digress and that is my good story for such a long gap in posts.

I went out of town for almost two weeks, between leaving for work, then a personal trip out to San Diego over the weekend, then back to South Florida for more work on the project and then home. I felt like the George Carlin routine about stuff. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MvgN5gCuLac So, I packed for two weeks, left some stuff at work so I could go across country for the weekend, then come back and get reunited with my stuff!

I did Graeme's first Cyclo-Spin in my hotel. Kind of sucked as the bandwidth was really low. An hour workout turned into 1 hour 45 minutes! But, it was awesome and I got my workout in. Things were really busy and crazy and I finally got back to town and got into a makeup class for my Computrainer class last Friday morning.

It was a cool class because instead of watching the screen and keeping your watts on track, it was a blind test where you had to ride for 20 minutes at what you thought was 65% of max, then 20 minutes at 75% of max, and then 10 minutes at 95% of max. I was under all 3 times but not by much. Several other folks went over 75% on the first test. There were two women and 4 men in that class. Both of us females were almost spot on in all 3 while the men tended to go too hard. Our coach said women are often better at this than men. Not sure why the gender tendency but I told him in the beginning I thought I would be good at that test. I have ridden all my life until about 18 months ago not using anything other than a cycling computer with distance, time, etc. I never even used a heart rate monitor. I can tell you if I my heart rate is up there- because I can't talk to you! Anyway, it was fun and different.

Last weekend was more cross training (yard sale and reverse ditch digging) so I finally got to put fenders and a rack on my commuter bike late Sunday night. Whew, that single speed got a lot heavier! I commuted to work on Monday and was pleased I kept up the same general average mph to work even with a heavier bike. I had another Computrainer class last night and had a blast pushing hard on some intervals. Hip flexors are telling me today that it worked! And I finally brought my ball chair into work so I can have people wonder what the heck that is. http://www.isokineticsinc.com/category/ex_ball_chairs

Hopefully there is a nice long ride in our beautiful Florida weather coming up this weekend.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

My muscles are very confused

Little bit of catching up. My second Computrainer class was great and my hip flexors complained for two days! That is when I know it is good! I rode over to the family Thanksgiving across town on Thursday. A very nice hour and a half ride and because I was going straight east for the most part I had a fabulous tail wind the whole way- woohoo! For those who try to balance family and training this was one of those occasions that can serve everyone. If you are planning a family outing you can either ride out to meet them or drive out with bike in tow and ride back. I understand about limited time and it is fun to find creative ways to serve everyone.

I had a much longer to do list over the days following Thanksgiving than time to accomplish them all. I was able to go out on Saturday and take a couple of our young dogs in the buggy behind the bike. We have two 6 month olds who are distemper survivors. They both still have lasting neurological damage with muscle twitches in their hind quarters but are able to still run and get around just fine. My special girl Paddy was first but it did not take long down the trail before she was whining and just seemed not to have a good time. I turned around and took Kody out. He was quiet and looking around and we were out for an hour total. I hope to take him out again so he can get exposed to different things.

Sunday was another cross training day. That means I dug a 150' long trench to run new power lines and conduit out to our gate opener. Yikes, unaccustomed activity. As an infomercial I was watching for a fitness product called it- muscle confusion. Just as Graeme says, you can't keep doing the same thing over and over. So, if I need to dig again in a week or two, I am more ready. But I hope not.

Now I am in the middle of a long road trip for business, then fly to San Diego for a conference, then back to work out of town next week. This is really putting a dent in training schedule as there is no schedule. I expect the rest of today and the next two days to go from 7 am to 11pm. Not much time off in there. I will get up early tomorrow and hope that wifi in the hotel fitness room is working for Graeme's spin class. Should be interesting, but I am committed now in continuing to move forward. This morning I got up and had time for some stretching and the first On the Go 15 minute circuit. Perfect for a hotel room.

Things will be busy but I will attempt to keep up posting and updates as I travel across the country.