Friday, April 29, 2011

Who's Who

It's Friday once again! Did you have a good week of training? Are you racing this weekend?

Here is the weekly list of this weekend racers. Go wish them luck and give a little encouragement.


Jo over at That Girl Who Sang the Anthem is doing the Nanticoke River Triathlon.

Sherry at A Woman in Motion is racing in the St Anthony's Triathlon.....go get em!


Minnesota Nancy is running her first (at least I think it's her first) 10K this weekend at the Pediatric Cancer Research Foundations event. This is a great event that I have done many times and not only wish Nancy the best in her race but hope you all take a moment to see what the charity is doing in the lives of children.

Kendra at Totally the Turtle is running the Wahoo's OC 5K this weekend.....with a special guest, ME! Good luck sweetheart.

Jim at 50 after 40 is running a half marathon at the OK City Half Marathon.....Hey Jim, go look for Christi from Pedestrian Runner as she will be running this event as well.

Sam over at Run with Sam will be rocking out to music while she runs the Rock N Roll Country Music Marathon. Sam, if you are not distracted by the music look for Mauricio from Triathlon at 55 as he will be rocking out on the course as well.

Now with Sam and Mauricio, there will be Misty from Athena Diaries running the Rock N Roll Country Music Marathon. Here is why I listed her separate.....not only is she running that marathon she is then going to turn around the next day and run the Flying Pig Marathon on Sunday. Crazy right? It gets better....she flys home Monday morning and goes into work around noon.

Well that is all I have for this weekend.... 2 triathlons, 4 Marathons, 2 Half Marathons, 1 10K and 2 5K's. Did i miss you, shoot me a comment or an email and I will get you on the list.

Every one.....race fast, race smart, hydrate and have fun!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Tools of the Trade

Lets face it, we all use the Internet in the form of blogs, online magazines, friends, facebook, etc to learn about new training techniques and races. So my question to all of you is two you use any apps in your training (iPhone or Droid)? If so, what apps do you use and why?

Here is a list of my favorite training apps, non-training apps and ones I think I may purchase.


  • Nike +, this app tracks your runs for least in theory! I had a pair of Nike + running shoes that completely hurt my feet. I have since switched to Brooks which feel like I am running on a mattress! One problem, the Nike + only seems to work about 75% of the time, regardless of the shoes.

  • Couch to 5K, not my favorite, but I know a ton of people that love it, including Totally the Turtle.

  • Strava, this app tracks your rides for you via the GPS. It will tell you your pace, distance, climbs, etc and track your progress over multiple rides so you can see your improvement.

  • Nike Training, great for short strength workouts! Some of the workouts are only 15 minutes long which is perfect to get in a great Ab killer.

  • My 24, this allows me to keep track of all the spin classes (and other classes) that 24 Hour Fitness has in my area.

Training Wish List

  • First Time Triathlon, looks like a useful training tool and would take all the guess work out of my training plan.

Non Training

  • Words with Friends, my wife always beats me at this game, but it's still fun!

  • MLB, enough said.

  • Facebook, because we all need to stay connected!

  • Too many more to list!

So, what apps do you use for both training and non-training?

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Online Challenge

So my wife is one of the main people in my life that holds me accountable to my training. On mornings when my alarm goes off hours before most people she is the one who bugs me to get out of bed on those days where I want nothing else than 2 more hours of sleep before work. She is the one who takes care of my nutritional needs as well as the kids and herself. She also is the one that holds down the fort at home and gets me out at night for my 2-a-day workouts. Lets face it, she is amazing.

The factor in her life that I see her struggle with is her workouts. Now maybe because she supports me so much she puts herself 2nd, which drives me crazy by the way. However this upcoming month she has decided to go big with her running. She is going to run a full marathon within the month of May!

Now to some of you that I know who read this blog daily, you think ok, 26.2 miles in 31 can do that mileage in a workout! But a little history here is that she started running a year ago, without ever running before. Her main goal was to get in shape and be a good example to our kids (little does she know, she already is). Her running has progressed from 2-3 times a week to running in 5K's and even a 10K. Her ultimate goal being that she can run a half marathon at a good mile pace.

So with that background this goal is doable, right? YES! The big factor is getting her out there and running. If I am being honest, I think she can get a marathon PLUS a half marathon in May.

So, please go over to her blog and share some of that great triathlon community with her and push her to victory! Check her out at Totally the Turtle.

Monday, April 25, 2011


If you could give a newbie triathlete 2 pieces of advice, what would they be?

I will post my 2 in the comments section tomorrow after a bunch of you comment.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Who's Who

The weekly who's who of racing weekend!

Very anticlimactic this week. As of right now I don't have anyone listed as racing anything this weekend. Hopefully it is because everyone is home with their families (or out with their families) celebrating Easter.

Happy Easter everyone!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Mini Tri

So last night I completed my little training plan that consisted of each sport. It went well and I am glad I did it, but here is the recap.


  • Was able to do all three sports

  • Felt amazing when I finished and felt very accomplished

  • Able to get in good training with great focus


  • Was starving when I woke up and felt very drained

  • The muscle along my shins cramped, again. I need this to stop so I can run longer distance!

  • Mountain bikes make a funny hum on pavement and don't very fast

  • Did not complete the full distance in my swim

All in all I am glad I did it if for no other reason i at least know where I stand for my triathlons in June. My main focus for each sport here on out.....

Swim - Finish the distance with no breaks

Bike - Need more saddle time. Just for comfort.

Run - Need my legs to stop cramping (any suggestions?)

Any experts or Ironman's out there have any suggests on moving forward?

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Big Training Night

Here it goes! I have a big training plan for tonight. Most of you reading this are going to think one of two things,

1) Are you crazy?

2) Man, that is just my warm up routine.

So, here is the plan. I am going to park my car at "The Club" and get ready for some fun. First I plan to take a run around the lake (yes we have lakes in SoCal, although it is man made). The run will be the same distance as a 5K since I plan to run 2/3's of the lake and then turn around and run back. I will then change straight into my riding shoes and complete the same route as my run, but possibly do it twice (10K). Then I will put the bike back in the car and check in at "The Club" and take a dip in the pool. The pool swim will equal at LEAST a 1/4 mile.

So, am I crazy or am i just doing your warm up routine?

Monday, April 18, 2011

Bike Drama

All last week I had been looking forward to getting my bike back from the shop. I planned to ride it first thing Saturday morning and even had my route picked out and established a time I wanted to complete it in. Then craziness happened and it has yet to stop.

Now keep in mind that I am just starting out in this triathlon deal. So, I took the advice of several friends and triathlon coaches and just plan to ride the bike I have instead of buying a new bike. Its a cost thing, plus who knows if this is going to be a long term deal anyway until I actually complete a race. So I took my mountain, yes you read that correct, mountain bike to the shop for some needed repairs.

When I picked up my bike it was perfect. Then I got home and did the Dad thing. Once I returned to the car to take my bike out I had a flat. Seriously!?!? Zero hours on the bike and a flat. This cant be happening.

So I took the bike bake on Saturday afternoon, after missing my morning ride. Turns out it was just a defective tube....replaced and working great!

Sometimes it just seems that if it is not one thing its another that gets in the way of training. The good news is.....I ran this weekend instead.


WOW, did you see that guy break the record for fastest marathon today in Boston? To bad it is not an actual world record considering the race has over 400 feet of decent, but still impressive. We all know I could not run it in twice his time!


Friday, April 15, 2011

Who's Who on Race Weekend

Being a new member of the blog community I have found so many people that are just plain amazing. Within blogging and the triathlon world (runners too) I have found an amazing amount of information, support and friendship. Its a little strange but exciting to have friends all over the place that are training and struggling with the same things I am.

I have noticed on a few blogs that I read, people are posting about either their upcoming race this weekend OR a list of people that are racing this weekend. This is the place I saw it first, Becoming an Ironman, and trust me read his blog it's awesome. So, I would like to start a tradition here on the BENCHWARMER to list all the people that have inspired me one way or another through their blog. Here is the who's who of races this weekend.

Good Luck!


Mauricio over at Triathlon at 55 is racing at the New Orleans Ironman 70.3


Jim at 50 after 40 is running the Boston Marathon.....impressive! Jim is planing to run a marathon in all 50 states after the age of 40. I can only dream of such a feat.

Deb at Deb Tris is running the Calgary Police Half Marathon. She posted that part of the race course might be underwater.......I'm no expert, (since it's 80 degress in So Cal today) but isn't it still cold in Calgary this time of year?

Liz at Mommy to Marathon is running her first 5K......Go give her some encouragement! This is amazing.

Jen at Runner....Maybe is running her first 10K

Jess at Run with Jess AND Jen at Adventures of Badgergirl are running the OshKosh Half Marathon

Colleen at Iron Diva is also running a Half Marathon

Last but not least, Tonia at Racing Babes is running the Dismal Swamp Stomp Half Marathon.

Did I miss you? Email me and I will update the list! If you have an upcoming race, email me that too so I can get you on the appropriate Friday Who's Who.

Ok everyone not racing, get out this weekend and get some good training in....your weekend is coming!

Thursday, April 14, 2011


So, after the epic fail earlier this week, today I had success. This morning, due to my work schedule I had some extra time in the gym. So, I did the one thing I hate after my typical Thursday workout....I ran! I only did a fraction over a mile, but I will take it and all the positive things that go with it. I can now officially say that i have started my morning running program.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Mental Game

I am learning very quick that this triathlon thing is a mental game. I have known for a long time that most things in life have a very large aspect of mental training. Take school for example, we all know that you must use your brain power to succeed in school, but I think it's more than mental ability. Most people can pass through high school and college based on their mental ability. The difference between a college graduate and a high school graduate is their mental toughness or desire to finish. Same goes for someone with a graduate degree versus a bachelors degree. A professor of mine once told me that my degree only meant two things, that I was willing to finish something that I started AND that I was trainable.

Don't get me wrong, each level of education you go through takes a certain amount of mental ability, but I think the bigger factor is mental toughness.

The same can be said about sports. Almost anyone can play youth sports. Then comes high school sports where many people stop and even more drop off at college sports. Now it takes a certain amount of God given talent to make it from high school to college, especially at a big name school. However how many athletes do you see in football, baseball, etc that have the talent but cant survive in college sports, let alone the rigors of professional sports. This is where mental toughness kicks in. Can they OR you take the daily grind of being an athlete at an elite level?

Where am I going with this?

Well if you are a triathlon athlete you know exactly where I am going. To be a part of triathlon you need the metal toughness I am referring to. The daily training and nutrition is a full time job let alone the fact that almost all triathletes have full time jobs and families as well!

I am now fully starting to understand what it takes to compete in the world of triathlons. It takes determination, dedication, discipline and mental toughness.....DDDMT? (Trying to get a good acronym here, maybe change a few words). The first three I can manage and make work, but how do you train your mind to be tough and take it to the next level to become a triathlete?

Monday, April 11, 2011

Epic Failure

This morning the alarm went off at 4:30am. Yuck. The plan was to get up, get ready and get out the door! I was planning to run this morning before my weight training session. Well, next thing i know it's 5:10am and I am scheduled to meet up for weight training at 5:30am. Yikes!

So, I tore out of the house in my gym attire, with the wrong shoes on no less and my protein shake and Xtend in hand. Arrived at the gym and was met by 75+ cars in the parking lot.....thankfully the gym had some kind of class going on and it was not busy at all.

Completed my weight training but was unable to get a run in before work. Epic Fail.

Now I am off to softball, hoping to have a great game and maybe even sneak in some extra running during the game. Would that count?

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Wanting to Workout

Do you ever find yourself WANTING to workout.....I mean working out becomes a your schedule revolves around when and where you can work out.

Love it, but kind of weird.

Needless to say, I did not workout this weekend. I think my body needed it from last week and I plan to make sure I get some hardcore work this week. The thing is, my mind was thinking about workouts ALL weekend.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

66 Days

There are 66 days until my first triathlon. Yikes!

I have been in the pool doing my laps, both straight swims and some _x25's and _x50's. The next couple of swims I am going to bump up to _x75's and within two weeks be at _x100's. In addition I have been on the bike in spin classes. Last night was an intense class that really pushed me to the next level both physically and mentally. Now, I just need my bike fixed so I can get on the road......hope it is not going to cost me an arm and a leg.

The area I am lacking on is running. I hate running. Any suggestions on how I can push myself into running more often? Some ideas have been to do a short run or elliptical stint before weight training in the morning. That would get some running in and then save my longer runs for days where it is my only focus.

Suggestions welcome.......

Wednesday, April 6, 2011


Last weekend my bride and I were able to get away for an entire 56 kids, no work, no responsibility! So, naturally we went to Vegas.

Vegas was good to us this year, we were able to reconnect and blow off some steam but yet still relax. The food was amazing, but frankly ALL of the meals were bad choices. I finally figured out that the veggies at one of the restaurants must have been coated in butter because they tasted so good.

The scale this morning, completely reflects what I ate. it also reflects my lack of training for 5 days. The silver lining in the whole weekend is that we went to the gym.....thank you 24 hour fitness for actually being everywhere. It was only an hour workout and I only did weight training, but it felt great to be in the gym and know that I was making a good choice.

When you get away, do you still train?

Monday, April 4, 2011


Where do you get your inspiration to do triathlons? Maybe from a friend, spouse, loved one, child, thrill of competing, ______ (fill in the blank) Well, I get my inspiration from an amazing woman, my bride (aka the TURTLE, visit her here) Check out what she is doing and continues to do in the fitness and health arena while being a stay at home Mom (well 95% of the time) a nurse, a wife, a friend, a daughter, and just all around amazing person. Without her my diet goes bad quickly, my workouts don't happen, and the joy I have around me does not exist. So a special thank you to my bride. Who is that one person in your life that inspires you?

Friday, April 1, 2011

Spin Class

This morning I took my first spin class! Well, it was not my first ever, but my first spin class in awhile. Loved it! 60 Minutes of an older woman laughing at us because we cant keep up with about motivation! I live on that kind of stuff. The thing I loved is that I was able to get in a ride for 50 minutes this morning, burn some calories and get my legs moving in the right direction. According to the instructor and a few things I have read online, a typical 50 minute class can cover 14 to 16 miles if you were to convert it to an actual ride on the road. Not bad, considering my triathlons will need to cover anywhere from 11-14 miles. I have read from a ton of triathlon blogs that bricks are great preparation for your actual triathlon race. However, I have recently seen a few people suggest that after EVER ride you should run. Since the transition for your body from ridding to running is the hardest, it will force you to get used to the feeling in your legs and back, giving you an edge in your preparation. Keep in mind, most people suggest only going for a 5 to 10 minute run after every ride, so not a true brick, but it is intended to train you mentally and physically about the demand your body will have during your transition. This is great advice! So, your asking your self now if I took this advice this morning........NOPE. I figured it was my first spin class and I wanted to make sure I could still walk later in the day. Plus, my bride and I have a big weekend getaway this weekend (without kids) which does require that my legs operate in a normal function! So there it is, first spin class down, many more to come. Does anyone else run for a few minutes after every ride?