Back by popular demand, Knuckle Up Triathlon returns to the blogosphere for the "tens" (2010)! I suppose a lot has happened since my last blog post, which was an inexcusable 6+ weeks(!) ago, but really not too much has happened in the way of significant training or anything on the racing front. I'll mention some of the things that stand out to me, but really just start fresh with the New Year.
Definitely the most tri-applicable news is that I am now on a new tri bike for 2010, a 2009 Felt B2 Pro. After five great years of training and racing on the trusty Cervelo steed, I have retired this bike to the pastures and I am stoked to be on the full carbon rig for the new season. The Felt is super comfortable (I think I have a nearly identical fit to my P3 dialed in now on the B2), and I can't wait to see what it can do on the open roads. It just looks incredibly aero and sharp with the Zipp wheels and DA drivetrain. Hopefully some of this snow will melt soon and we'll get one of the unseasonably warm winter days that I've been telling everyone we're bound to get and I am so desperately hoping for.The biggest non-tri news without a doubt is that my younger brother Chris got engaged to his longtime girlfriend Alyson. CONGRATS guys! They are planning a summer wedding of this year and I can't wait for that and for them, they are a great couple and this is going to be huge! Christmas and New Year's came and went, and I enjoyed the time off from work and as always had some nice time with my family and my newly minted inlaws. Wonderful gifts, wishes, and holiday love and cheer was spread far and wide. New Year's Day Jocelyn and I went to the Y for one of our traditional New Years Day workouts, and once we were done swimming, took some fun underwater pictures and also a few practical ones and video for some stroke analysis.
Friends Jim, Leslie, and Bill. Jim is our masters swim team's self-appointed "spiritual leader", Leslie a northern VA swimmer visiting her USMS buddies, and Bill is our masters coach and resident super-swimmer at the SEWY Y. Note the swedes on Bill as proof of his speed.
Unfortunately I have yet to find my groove with the indoor cycling this winter and have been struggling to get in real long sessions on the weekend. So in place of some of the volume that my sanity is not currently allowing for, I have been supplementing with a little more intensity than usual and am getting in some focused, steady to mod-hard sessions. Not having the group CompuTrainer sessions like we have the last two winters has definitely made a difference, but some talks are in the works to put together some basement sufferfests with friends! In the meantime though, Jocelyn and I are trying to make the most of this old school, snowy Pittsburgh winter with a little cross country skiing. Last Saturday the wife and I went up to Sewickley Heights Park and did some xc on trails we had previously only run or biked on.
Saturday night we had dinner at our friends' Joe and Fay, where they made some awesome homemade Chinese, with some mongolian beef and coconut curry vegetables and rice. There was also a case of Hofbrau House Dunkel on hand, as well as some sake and the night was definitely full of great tastes and indulgence. Below is the tasty wedding cake made for us by Fay's mother, which all of us made quick work of after the Chinese feast!
Pictured from l to r: Judy, Jocelyn, Steve, Fay, and Joyce. (not pictured: me, Joe, and Russell)
Sunday morning was a little rough seeing as I am now a lightweight, but Joe and I met for an 11 mile progression run in the 8 degree temps. It was a struggle to get going, but after 5 miles or so I found my legs and we started clipping along around 7min pace and below. JV and I post-run trying to warmup and let hats and beards thaw.
Sunday afternoon Jocelyn and I saw Avatar which we thoroughly enjoyed - I must admit, I'm a sucker for visually astounding, reality bending, consciousness questioning sci-fi flicks. I had the same sort of feeling after seeing the original Matrix for the first time. Sunday evening we had dinner at my rents' house, and afterwards my mom pulled out my old swimming warmup jacket that she found while cleaning some unseen corner of the house. This was a huge blast from my AG swimming past with the Sea Dragons, and probably from about when I was eight or nine years old, judging by the progressive swim lesson patches and the size of the thing. It would be so cool to sport this relic from my first days as an endurance athlete to a current masters swim meet, but I doubt I could get this tiny hoody around my shoulders or zipped at all!
So until the weather warms considerably, I'm going to have to stay motivated by watching the upcoming winter games, and following along with the ongoing Epic Camp in NZL for the next 5 days. I better start getting into that champion mindset myself though, because the first race of the year is only about three months away! Happy training-