Monday, September 29, 2014

Two sides of the coin...I should flip more often

The last few weeks have been difficult mush less the last few months. I've been battling health issues that have been attributed with causing my poor performance in training and races and resulting in my emergency appendectomy. I've been trying to get back on track with training but to be honest, life is kind of kicking my butt right now. 

Throw in that last weekend I had to stop at mile 8 of a 10 mile training run because my HR spiked up to around 230bpm and I was sincerely concerned I might be having a heart attack. WE won't even go into how angry I was that I had to stop before logging the mileage. This past week was spent with normal training and I had no HR issues other than having to go slow on the run and bike in order to keep my HR in the prescribed zones from my coach. So, flash forward to yesterday where I'm supposed to get in a 12 miler. I knew the run wasn't about pace or effort, it was all about mileage. J was out for an 18 mile run so I figured I'd drop in for the last 6 or 8 miles as company and then get the rest of my miles alone. Well that was a great plan until around mile 3 when had a HR spike of 230bpms again. No pain or numbness of the face and hands like last week, this time it just felt like there was a machine gun going off in my chest. Ok, well start walking and let it come down. My HR dropped quickly back to normal so I figured I was fine and started running again...only to have it spike back up to 230bpms within 20 or 30 strides. Sonuva! Nothing to do here but walk home. I saw that my HR was dropping quickly again so calling an ambulance or even going to the ER would be fruitless because I'd show up and my HR would be normal (I've had a few EKGs up to this point and they've all come back clean).  Well, time to call the docs again (I'm getting a little tired...and stressed out from trips to the docs) and schedule a stress test or another EKG or whatever tests they decided. I sat down, upset and beyond frustrated thinking that if I've had my "had two good years of training and racing" and now gonna start falling apart...I'm gonna lose my mind.

I went through the rest of the day trying to be positive and even managed a nap. I woke up to my mind racing. What the hell?! I went from this high speed-low drag-wired for sound triathlete who was fit and thin and doing 20+ races a season and could do this fluffy, filled with doubt, worried about my own mortality, not racing or training hard, "athlete". I'm heavier than I want to be...WAY heavier. The best way to explain it is its like the fact is this thick heavy coat of grime that I can never clean off. It weighs me down, mentally and physically and I'm not dealing with it anymore. I'm going back to being me, only two ways to finish...across the line or on a stretcher. I'm the guy that knew I was having a heat stroke but refused to quit an Ironman race because I was going to finish. The same guy that crashed and cracked ribs at another Ironman race but would be damned if I'd quit. That is my core being. I talked to the doc and yes while I need a follow up with my primary physician I have been been training with no issue except for last Sunday and on my first attempt of the run. I should be ok to keep training but if I have a HR spike or pain I should stop ASAP. Ok, that I can deal with. I went back to find the clothes I ran in earlier in the day (a terrible idea in hindsight because the salty clothes tore right into me...but I was trying to prove a point) reset, took a deep breath and went out for a run again. I have a 3 mile loop that I normally run so I figured I'd do one loop, see how I felt and watch my HR. If there were no issues, try another loop...then another with the goal of getting in 9 miles to complete my mileage on the day. The 9 miles went by without issue and while I didn't push hard and constantly watched my HR on my watch, I got it done and finally...FINALLY have a feeling of accomplishment.Ya, I got my 12 miles to get back to training like I know how...

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

A good meal doesn't have to be that hard...

A "super salad" is an easy way to make a nutrient rich, meal quickly. This is my "10 Minute Taco Salad"

- Mixed greens (either available at your grocer or I like to make my own from iceberg and romaine lettuces)
- Rice. Any brand instant will do. 1 cup in a bowl with water for 3 minutes will do the trick. For this recipe I like to use a dash of little taco seasoning (I like the "Old El Paso" brand)
- Ground turkey. Remember that taco seasoning for the rice? Well, put a 1/2lb of turkey in a hot pan with a little olive oil, the taco seasoning, some pepper and a couple finely chopped pieces of cilantro. Brown the meat, drain off the excess juice/fat. Use half of it here and save the other half for later.
- 1 cup of cherry tomatoes
- 1/2 of an avocado
- 2 tablespoons fat free ranch dresing (any brand will do)

Assemble and voila! The perfect pre or post workout meal. Its not just good...its good for you!

Sunday, September 7, 2014


After watching the documentaries "Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead" and "Food Inc" I was reminded of absolutely how out of touch our mass market food sources are. In this day and age where you walk into a supermarket and have no idea where your food comes from...or how it's been treated/handled/harvested...or you find out that companies responsible for pesticides and Agent Orange like Monsanto are in the food business...its time to get back to food you know! 

I'm rapidly becoming a fan of OHIO (only handled it once) food. Get on the internet and do a search for local farms. Go visit them and look in their "stores". I love opening the door to their food case and asking where the items come have the owner point outside to pens, coops and fields and say "right out there". Not only is it "made" there but...its FRESH! Local farm bureaus and co-ops share and sell each other's food. And it's good, really good. Ya, that's milk from a local a GLASS bottle. Order what meat you want ahead of time and mass raising in feed lots go away (one of the major attributed cause of the issues with our mea
t sources). Change the way you shop and what you're eating. Take the time to know your food source and support local farmers