NYC Triathlon 2014

Race Report


A l(not so short) look at the two main options for fueling in endurance sports

My Famous Fails

A little recap of my accidents

Race Recap of the Demi-Marathon des Microbrasseries

Race report for this new race, complete with multiple distances, and BEER!!!

Friday, 27 December 2013

My Famous Fails

"There are two types of riders; Those who have gone down, and those who will"

I don't remember where I heard this adage, intended to reference motorcycle riders, but I feel that it applies perfectly well to cyclists as well. Everyone has a story about either a close call or an actual spill. As an ICEdot athlete, I thought it would be appropriate to share some of my more memorable accidents (yeah, there's been a few).

My funniest falls were probably back when I just started getting into road cycling, specifically when I made the big switch to clipless pedals. When I got them, I was worried that I would't unclip in a high speed accident and risk breaking my leg. The salesmen assured me that wouldn't happen and that they were designed to unclip in that situation. What he didn't tell me was the risk of not unclipping when barely moving. Yup, the first few falls on my brand new bikes were a very slow teeter and collapse while rolling to a slow stop. Literally barely moving, a wobble as I failed to unclip, and just toppled over. Honestly it barely even hurt. Might have bruised my ego more than anything. One time though this happened near an intersection as a city bus was turning and I nearly ended up under of it's wheels. That was pretty scary. Lesson learned from these few falls was that it was pretty important to make sure that I got good at unclipping my pedals quickly and smoothly to make sure I don't look this silly again.

I've also had some more serious falls. One happened to me towards the end of last season, that left me pretty banged up. I was on a long ride, actually coming back from the shop where I bought my bike, having just received a quick tuneup. I was in an area that I'm not entirely familar with, and though i knew I had to get up onto a bridge, and saw it, I wasn't sure where the best place was to get up. Thinking I saw a way, I rode quickly across an empty parking lot. While turning, I was looking up at the bridge to follow the road, and didn't see a small patch of sand. As soon as I rode over it, my wheels went out from under me, I fell, and my bike continued another 10 feet (notice how my shoes unclipped though!). I was on the ground in pain for a minute or so when a women who was waiting at a nearby busstop ran over, telling me that she "heard" the fall. Because I was turning, I mostly hit my side. I ended up with a nice bruise on my hip that lasted over a year, wolverine-style scraps on my arms, and some nice road-rash on my legs/knees. Though it's hard to say because it happened so fast,, I'm pretty sure I hit my helmet to the ground, which is what I think the woman heard Overall, I still consider myself lucky to have walked away without breaking anything

My accidents have been pretty tame compared to some of the high-speed wipe outs my friends have told me about, which is why I'm glad to be part of the ICEdot team and to use their system. Accidents happen, and if they do, it's important that everyone has your information.
Feel free to share some of your famous fails!

Thursday, 12 December 2013

A cold Demi-Marathon des Microbrasseries (Microbrews, hurray!)

Yes. There was beer

I'm Canadian and proud, so have races in the winter seems like a God-given right! With that in mind, this is a recap of my second ever winter race (the first being the Winterman Marathon 2013), which when translated from French comes out to the Microbreweries Half-Marathon. This race is part of the Gourmandes series, which features local food companies from various regions. It was also the first year that that this particular race was held, and from what I've read from the organizers might be last.

The race popped onto my radar by a Team in Training staff member, and what caught my eye was that I would get a free beer flute if I registered early. I don't even drink beer at home much, but hell I can always use a new glass. Online registration was done pretty fast through the Quid-Chrono system (kinda a simplified French version of As the race got closer, the race organizers sent out plenty of emails with information about packet pick-up, travel, parking, race info and the usual "get pumped" emails. The only thing I didn't love was that everything was in French. I don't mind reading French, but going through long detailed emails gets tiring, and makes it easy to miss important information.
Where's Eddie?
Driving to the race was pretty easy, as the site was only about a half-hour from Montreal. The only bad thing was that the parking lot (actually a soccer pitch) was on a side street, so there were dozens if not hundreds of people stuck waiting for the turn signal to be able to go, causing a fair bit of congestion. There was a little office/chalet to huddle before the race, before we all headed out to get ready. They did a good job of keeping music pumping to keep us motivated, but I feel that we stood there longer than we really had to. They started late, meaning we were all waiting outside in the cold without moving for a good 10-15 minutes.
The race itself was pretty nice. Mostly flat with very light rolling hills through quaint neighborhoods with little no to traffic. Honestly I don't even know if the roads were closed, or there is just so little traffic there. Some locals were waving from their windows or doorsteps, which is always nice to see. Water and sports drinks were set up every few kilometers. Nothing special, just the basics here.

The finish line was where the party really started. There was a great arrangement of fruit, chocolate milk, hot food from local sources and plenty of beer (remember the name of the race?). Unfortunately I was feeling pretty cold, so skipped the beer. However the local McDonald's got in on the action and had a trailer parked and handing out free hot beverages. I helped myself to a hot chocolate with whipped cream because, hey, I just ran a half marathon.

Now is where the trouble started... Something that I didn't mention is that the race was a point-to-point. As in you don't finish where you started. Thanks to only glancing at the all-French emails, I didn't realize that I was a full 18km from the start. The organizers had rented school-buses to shuttle people back to their starting point (were different spots for the 5k, 10k, and 21k routes). The problem is that they only had 2 working buses, which the majority of runners needed to use. Being a race with a few thousand participants, this meant that A LOT of people were stuck standing in the cold, wet and tired, for a while. I think I had to wait a good 30 minutes before being able to get on a shuttle. As much as it sucked, I could forgive the organizers for this one misstep, seeing as it was the first edition of the race, and everything else was pretty much smooth sailing. I finished in 1:49 on the dot, which though I felt like I had given a decent effort, I'm happy with considering I hadn't genuinely trained for it.

This race also marked the official end of my 2013 race season. I took the medal, along with the others from this year and added them to my now quite full shadow box. I'll be on the lookout for other ideas of what to do with medals/bibs.

In the meantime, thanks for reading, feel free to comment below, and keep tri-ing!

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Catching up

Wow it's been too long since I've gotten a blog post out. I figure I've got about half a year's worth of catching up to do, so I figure the best way to do so without overloading one post will be to spread it out. This post will focus on what's been going on most recently, then I'll add some older race reports in the near future.

So....first big change has been in my nutrition (as the title suggests..duh). I've basically gone Paleo for the past month or so and it's amazing. Paleo (or at least my version of it), means no grains, no dairy, and as little processed sugar as possible. The reason I say that I'm doing it in my own way is because I don't necessarily agree with all the tenets of the Paleo movement, but I agree with the main principles.Fit, Fast, Fat", and doing my own reading, I've decided to give it a go and see how my body reacts. In addition to following the Paleo diet, I also try to focus on reducing my carbohydrate intake in general, focusing instead on consuming healthy fats.
Eating more whole foods is downright better for your body, and after listening to podcasts like "Ben Greenfield Fitness' and "

I can't say all this has been easy. Or cheap. I've slowly begun stocking my kitchen with coconut oil, "Paleo-friendly" flours, non-processed sweeteners, and more Kale than any one person should have. The hard part is coexisting with my family at dinner's, who don't understand all my choices or that I really do feel like I am doing what is best for my health.

The results so far have been pretty awesome. As an endurance athlete, I was already pretty lean, weighing about 160-165lbs. Since switching my diet over, I've dropped down to closer to 155lbs, and lowered my overall body-fat to just over 11%. Keep in mind that just a few years ago, before starting Triathlon, I was weighing in at almost 190. No, it's not Biggest Loser style weight-loss, but I think thats pretty damn good.
Since nutrition is so important, I'm going to add a "Recipes" tab soon and link to posts with good recipes that I've created or found that are simple, healthy, or just really delicious, all made with an ingredient list that you can pronounce.

On the endurance sport side of things, it is officially the off-season! That means a slightly reduced load of the 3 main sports, and putting in some time to improve general conditioning. My personal goal is to use the next few months to regain some muscular strength through weight training. I am also trying to introduce the maphetone method of training, whereas a majority of your training is done below lactate threshold, which happens to also be the point at which your body switched to using carbs as fuel instead of fat. Since it's winter and icy, this is fine by me since sprints and hill training could be a bit dangerous.

Vineman 70.3 2014 - L'chaim!
For next year, I'm starting to build my race list, and the first major race looks like it will be the Vineman 70.3 in California with the Dozer Team! I love how triathlon gives me an excuse to do some traveling to places I've never been. Also, since I'm moving to the New York area soon, I'm looking at races in that general area, which of course there are many. I was lucky enough to win the lottery entrance to the NYC Triathlon, and I'll be sprinkling in a few short course triathlons, as well as some half-marathons, a full marathon or two, and maybe even a Spartan Race.

As always, thanks for reading, and keep Tri-ing!