Who is Ted?

I'm the father of two beautiful daughters and an amazing wife. For fun, I enjoy the long hours of seemingly endless suffering that endurance sports (mostly running, cycling and triathlon)provide. During my "down time" I'm an avid beer snob and self-described gourmet chef (in other words I like to burn things on a stove or grill).

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Looking back at the last 3 years

I started this blog in 2012 as a way to keep track of my exploits in endurance sports and my experiments in the brew keg, amongst other things.  While I do write occasionally about the beer, it's the swimming, biking, and running that I seem to write about more.  Today I spent a little time looking back at my training log for the last three years.  I began a regular training log in January of 2010, and it's cool to see the accomplishments since back in 2009 when I first made the decision to do a triathlon.   Here are the highlights:
The first year I entered into triathlon was 2010.  I signed up for just one event, a sprint triathlon in Loveland, scheduled for late July.   Triathlon was an entirely new experience.  I purchased my first road bike that year, tried open water swimming for the first time, and logged several miles of running.  I also voraciously read everything that I could about triathlon and got linked into web sites like Beginner Triathlete and Trifuel, two sites that I still frequent to this day.   On July 24th, I completed the Loveland Sprint Triathlon in 1hr, 19m, and 23s.  I was 79th overall (out of 316), and 10th in my age group (out of 25).  The best portion of the event was the run which I
completed in 20:26, the fourth fastest in my age group.  I absolutely loved the triathlon experience, and it wasn't long before I'd registered for another.  The Boulder Sunset Triathlon was a slightly longer event that I finished in 1:43:55.  Unlike Loveland, it was held in the afternoon, and the event itself was delayed by a couple of weeks due to a fire in the Boulder area that year.  I remember the day as being especially warm, so I was happy just to finish, especially since I did a same day "commute" from Pueblo to and from the race.  Nothing like 140 miles of driving to get you ready to race!  The final highlight of 2010 for me was a 5k that I ran for my daughter's school.  I ran it in 19:52, which was the fastest I'd done in a number of years.  Even more exciting, I wound up notching my first and only overall road race win.   Not bad for an old guy!  Here's a chart of 2010:
Volume totals for the 2010 campaign

 In 2011, I intended to better my efforts from the previous year, as well as step up to the Olympic distance.  My "A" race would be the Cherry Creek Streak, an Olympic distance held at the end of July.  I also decided to add two new sprint triathlons in preparation for the event.  The first was going to be the Summer Open Triathlon in Longmont which would take place in mid-May.  That event was changed to a duathlon however after high levels of E-coli bacteria were found in the lake water.   A few weeks later however, I did my first triathlon of 2011 at the Greeley Triathlon.  The race is only a couple of miles from my parent's house, and I was able to complete the short sprint race in 1hr, 4min, and 8seconds.  This was good for 32nd overall and 1st in my age group.  My first triathlon podium!  In July, I did the streak with another great result.  The bike ride for this Olympic event was slightly shorter.  I wound up with a 2nd place finish including 1st in my age group for the 10k.  However, I suddenly found myself at the end of July with no more races on the calendar.  I wasn't sure what to do to stay motivated. On a whim, I decided to sign up for the American Discovery Trail Marathon (ADT), to see if my summer of training would pay off.  The ADT would be my first marathon in a dozen years.  Five weeks later, on a beautiful Labor Day morning, I ran from Palmer Lake into Downtown Colorado Springs.  My unofficial goal was to finish the race in under 4 hours, which I managed by a mere 55 seconds, finishing in 3:59:05.  Thank goodness, or that would have hung over my head forever! I promised myself that I'd never have to do another marathon again (famous last words) 2011 looked like this:
2011: Highest amount of biking and swimming during the past 3 years.
At the end of 2011, I heard about a new Triathlon series called HITS.  Originally, there were no events scheduled for Colorado during 2012, but then a venue was added for Fort Collins.  It looked to be a great, albeit difficult course.  The bike portion was scheduled climb up into the mountains west of the city.  I signed up and looked forward to moving up to the 70.3 distance, realizing that this would be a whole new challenge.  I also found myself signing up for a Spring Marathon (Colfax) in spite of myself.  In terms of events, I completed a number of races in 2012 including 9 road races.  I also wound up competing in 4 triathlons in 2012.  Two of them were short sprints, one Olympic event, and then the HITS race, my "A" race for the year.  I didn't try for a PR during the Marathon in May, but I felt much better after running it than in my previous two marathons. In July, the HITS triathlon wound up being relocated to Sterling, as a result of some major forest fires in the Fort Collins area, including one that decimated the area where the bike portion of the event was supposed to be held.  The event in Sterling was well run, but it was an absolute furnace during the running portion of the race.  I had hoped to finish the event in about 5:30, but that evaporated in the scorching heat, which reached close to 100 degrees that day.  After much suffering, I finished in 6hrs, 5 minutes.  This was second in my age group, but with only two people total in my age group, it didn't really mean anything.  Despite the slower time, I was very pleased with the way I executed my race plan for the day.  It also convinced me that I wanted to keep racing at this distance in the coming year, knowing that it would be easy to get a true PR if the weather conditions are better.  2012 looked like this:
2011: Less Swimming and Biking than 2011, but a lot more running
So now it's April 2013 and I haven't done a single race yet this year.  That will change in a couple of weeks, but even at that I plan on doing fewer races.  Officially on the calendar at this point are  an ultra, a half marathon, a 10k, a century ride, and at least one half-Ironman.  Beyond that I hope to add a 2.4 swim race and another 70.3 distance.  Instead of racing, I'll spend the summer building my bike and swim fitness, and backing off of the running a bit.  With fewer races, I anticipate being able to build my overall volume this year, which I hope will serve me well in the long term.  Since I started the year with an injury, my volume to date is lower than I'd expected, but by staying healthy, that should start to change.  Here's 2013 so far:
The Ultra training reveals a lot of running miles.
Knowing that I'll get more swimmng, biking, and running in during the summer months, I shouldn't have any problem covering more distance in 2013.
For most of my adult life, I've pursued endurance events of one sort or another, but in 2010, I began these pursuits with a renewed sense of purpose.  I "officially" began this journey on January 1st, 2010.  In that time, I've covered a lot of ground:
Yellow=Running, Orange=Biking, Peach=Swimming
I imagine that the totals here are nothing compared to some folks.  But for me personally, it represents a lot of dedication and commitment.  Since 2010, I've run 1,550 miles, biked 3,727 miles, and covered another 130 miles in the water.  That's a total of about 5,408 miles.  Another six hundred miles would be like crossing the United States from coast to coast, twice.  Not bad for an old guy!

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