Saturday, June 26, 2010

Grand Tour of LA- Double Metric Century

The 52nd annual Los Angeles Wheelmen Grand Tour was a great event. I completed the shortest route, the Double Metric Challenge. It is 125 miles with 7,900 feet of climbing. It was the longest and hilliest ride I have ever done. Incredibly, some riders covered 200, 300, and even 400 miles today.

Riders can count on three full service aid stations, SAG support (volunteers roaming the course in cars that can give you a ride or help fix minor mechanical problems), a route sheet with directions to follow, and a post-ride barbeque. With all these benefits, the entry fee is a real bargain and probably does not even cover the costs involved. Many thanks to the LA Wheelmen volunteers! I'm sure many of them would rather be out riding, but volunteer to support the event instead.

I am dedicating this entire year to preparing for the 2011 Ironman St. George. I treated this ride as a long training day to test my endurance and climbing ability. I was more concerned about the hills than the distance. I felt good all day and climbed more steadily than I expected.

I was rescued from a potentially ride ending problem by two LA Tri Clubbers who noticed I had pulled over towards the top of Latigo Canyon, the biggest climb of the day. Leading up to a big event, athletes of any sport are told to “not try anything new” and “rely on their training.” Yesterday, I decided to adjust my seat angle and it today it came loose ¾ of the way up the toughest climb. When Alison and Tom passed I told them I was fine, but they waited anyways. It's a good thing they did because I had not realized yet that the tool I was carrying didn't have the right size allen key on it. They lent me the correct tool and I was on my way again.

I lost track of them on a downhill section and ended up missing a turn on Mulholland. I rode downhill on Kanan Dume Road for several miles past three tunnels before a guy that followed me realized that we had gone the wrong way. I didn't mind the extra mileage, but it was all uphill.

This was my first organized ride and it was completely unmarked. I had to ride without a bike computer because a pin fell out of my GPS so it could not be mounted onto the bike. I contacted the manufacturer (Garmin) and they offered to send a replacement pin free of charge, but not in time for today's ride. I made one other wrong turn on Highway 23 and rode another extra 10 miles of rolling terrain. I must have ridden 150 miles with over 9,000 feet of climbing today. I stopped at the intersection of Santa Rosa and Moorpark Road worried I was offtrack for the third time when a SAG vehicle pulled over and informed me I was just around the corner from the full service lunch stop. By the time I reached the second aid station at Peach Hill Park in Moorpark, I was feeling defeated at my inability to follow the route, but still had plenty of energy to continue riding. Luckily, I found the two LA TriClubbers who had helped me earlier. This time, I decided to stay with them since they were more familiar with the route. They also had both completed the inaugural Ironman St. George at which I volunteered and will be competing in next year.

My main diabetes related concern was that I went back on an insulin pump earlier this week and was not sure what to expect on such a long ride. Even though there were three aid stations, I carried plenty of food (gels, cereal bars, and two refillable bottles). I am looking forward to getting my Dexcom CGM soon. Continuous glucose monitoring (cgm) is an amazing technology that allows diabetics to get nearly real-time blood glucose readings without stopping to prick your finger and draw blood. For everyday diabetes management and especially during endurance training, the most valuable data it generates are trend graphs that alert you sharp drops or spikes that you can treat by ingesting carbohydrates or administering an insulin bolus. Today, I checked my sugar manually several times and it was right on target, between 90 and 120. I consumed about 15 gels, 5 cereal bars, 3 bananas, 1 basket of strawberries, 4 turkey and cheese sandwiches, 2 non-diet sodas, a few bunches of grapes, 5 oatmeal raisin cookies, half a roll of salted crackers, 6 bottles of electrolyte drinks (various types), 2 salt tablets, and possibly more.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Redondo Beach Triathlon

The Redondo Triathlon is one of the shortest triathlons around. It consists of a half mile swim, six mile bike, and two mile run. My main objective today was simply to kick off the season and set an early season benchmark speed in each discipline. El Triatlon de Redondo Beach es uno de los mas cortos que existe. Consiste en nadar media milla, andar en bicicleta por seis millas, y correr dos millas. Hoy, mi objetivo principal fue empezar la temporada y establecer puntos de referencia en cada disciplina.

I swam the half mile at approximately a two minute per 100 meter pace. If I kept that pace at a 2.4 mile Ironman distance, it would take me almost an hour an a half to finish. I certainly have some work to do in the pool. I plan on rejoining my local master's swim club in July when my work schedule changes for the Summer. Two years ago, those coaches and teammates taught me how to swim and in just a couple of months, prepared me to do my first triathlon. Other than improving my speed, I will need to practice sighting without lifting my head out of the water. Nade media milla a dos minutos por cada 100 metros. Si mantengo ese paso en una distancia Ironman de 2.4 millas, terminaria en casi una hora y media. Reconozco que tengo bastante entrenamiento que hacer en la piscina. Voy a volver a mi equipo de natacion en Julio cuando cambia mi horario de trabajo para el Verano. Hace dos anos, estos entrenadores y companeros me ensenaron a nadar y me prepararon para participar en mi primer triatlon en solo un par de meces. Aparte de mejorar mi velocidad, voy a tener que practicar poder mirar hacia adelante sin sacar mi cabeza del agua.

In a race this short, transitions are very important. Only the two top finishers were able to get through T1 in less than two minutes because you had to run up a long ramp to the transition area at Veteran's Park. Considering that extra (uphill) distance, I am pleased with a 3:35 T1. En una carrera tan corta como esta, las transiciones son muy importantes. Solo dos participantes pudieron salir de T1 en menos de dos minutos porque habia que subir corriendo por una rampa larga para llegar al area de transicion en Veteran's Park. Tomando en cuenta esta distancia adicional, estoy contento con un T1 de 3:35.

I rode at 19 miles an hour. I don't expect to hold that same speed in an Ironman, but will try to match it an olympic triathlon later this year. T2 took me 1:18. En bicicleta, obtuve un promedio de 19 millas por hora. No espero poder mantener esa misma velocidad en un Ironman, pero lo voy a intentar igualar en un triatlon olimpico este ano. Me demore 1:18 en T2.

I ran two miles at a 7:07 mile pace. Slower than my 5k speed last week, but I was just glad to run with no ankle pain from a sprain that has been bothering me. I think I'm ready to start running more again. Corri dos millas a 7:07 por milla. Fue mas lento que en una carrera de 5k la semana pasada, pero estoy contento de haber podido correr sin dolor al tobillo que me ha molestado ultimamente. Creo que estoy listo para volver a correr distancias mas largas.

Special thanks to my dad for making it to the race and taking a few pictures. Gracias a mi papa por venir a la carrera y tomar fotos.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Hawthorne 5k

Ran the Hawthorne 5k this morning. I wanted to break 20 minutes, but was unable to run hard enough due to a sprained ankle that has kept me from running for the past two weeks. Finished in 21:15 which is a 5k PR for me and a cautious step in the right direction. My friend America was able to beat her 30 minute goal and is already planning her next race. Sub 1 hour 10K? I am also proud of my mom for powerwalking her way to a 45 minute finish. She felt good and wants to mix in some running next time. Good job!

Participe en la carrera de 5k en Hawthorne esta manana. Queria terminar en menos de 20 minutos, pero no pude por un esguince del tobillo que me previno correr por las ultimas dos semanas. Termine en 21:15, mi mejor tiempo de 5 kilometros y un cuidadoso paso adelante hacia cumplir mi meta. Mi amiga America logro terminar dentro de su meta, menos de 30 minutos. Ya esta planeando su proxima carrera. 10k en menos de 1 hora? Tambien estoy orgulloso de mi mama, quien camino muy consistente para terminar en 45 minutos. Quiere prepararse para en la proxima poder caminar y CORRER. Bien hecho!

Afterwards, I headed over to the beach to finally try out my new wetsuit before my first triathlon of the year next week at Redondo. The Xterra Wetsuit is very comfortable and flexible. I really need to practice sighting. I think it will be easier to swim a straight line with big bright orange buoys in the water.

Despues, fui a la playa para por fin probar mi nuevo wetsuit antes de mi primer triatlon del ano que sera la proxima semana en Redondo Beach. El traje Xterra es bastante comodo. Mi di cuenta que necesito practicar levantar la mira para nadar en una linea mas recta. Creo sera mas facil navegar cuando hay boyas anaranjadas en el agua marcando el camino.

And the best news of the day... After swimming, I stopped at my favorite bagel spot, Manhattan Bread and Bagel. Still wearing my Triabetes shirt, the store manager asked me if I do triathlons. I told her about our club and mentioned that our first Los Angeles event is coming up soon, on July 25th in Hermosa Beach. She was nice enough to offer to donate refreshments for our event. Thank you Kristin Robbins and Manhattan Bread & Bagel!

Y la mejor noticia del dia... Despues de nadar, pare a comer en mi lugar favorito de bagels, Manhattan Bread and Bagel. Todavia tenia puesta mi camiseta de Triabetes, y la gerente del restaurant me pregunto si participo en triatlones. Le informe sobre nuestro club, y le comente que nuestro primer evento en Los Angeles sera el 25 de Julio en Hermosa Beach. Fue tan amable que ofrecio donar los refrescos para el evento. Gracias Kristin Robbins and Manhattan Bread & Bagel!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Memorial Day Weekend

Had a great ride on Sunday. Rode from Long Beach to Oceanside and caught Amtrak back to LA for a total of 75 miles. Going at an easy pace, the purpose was to spend five hours on the bike. Here's a few pictures:

Fui en bicicleta desde Long Beach hasta Oceanside (75 millas) este Domingo y tome el tren de vuelta a Los Angeles. A una velocidad relativamente facil, el proposito fue durar cinco horas en la bicicleta. Aqui hay algunas fotos: