Friday, July 25, 2008

The Weigh-In Week 58

218.8. That's what it said on the scale this morning. A gain of 2.4 pounds.

Hate to say I told you so.

Instead of wallowing in self pity. I got up and road my bike to work, despite wet, dirty roads and a threat of torrential down pour.

I got drenched, I got muddy, I got lost and I was late for work and yet it was the best decision I could have made.

It is amazing to me how fast I can start to feel like I am out of shape.

Last week I achieved my greatest physical triumph ever, yesterday I felt like a 300 pound couch potato. I know it's mostly mental. Which means I need to do some serious mental and physical training in the next 5 days if I want to have any hope of a repeat performance at the Brewhouse Triathlon.

Calorie counting starts tomorrow. For reals this time!

Have a great weekend everybody.

07/24 218.8 lbs
10.8 lbs. to go

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Guess How Much I Weigh Contest - Week 58

Sadly there will be a gain this week... and it will be significant.

I am at a gain right now and I am on the go from 7am to 10pm with no chance of getting in a workout.

What a lousy way to start my first week of weight loss re-commitment.

Here's how I am looking at it though. This public embarrassment after such a bravado filled announcement is just the kick in the shorts I need to really get things back on track!

Or is that just an excuse?

I know these little bummer bits of info before the contest are not the most motivating to you the guesser either. Sorry 'bout that. If you don't vote this week, be sure to come vote next week. I promise to be full of positivity next week, cause I am working my tail off starting first thing tomorrow morning.

And lets remember I did finish my first triathlon less then a week ago, that's something positive.

Step right up, step right up.
Guess how much I weigh and win a fabulous prize.

To Recap:
Every Thursday I give you my stats for the week and you guess what you think the scale will say on Friday morning. The winner is the first person who guesses my weight / weight loss for the week without going over or the person who is closest without going over. Go ahead and click on comments at the bottom of this post and leave your guess.

I will post the winner when I post my weight on Fri. morning. If we get ten or more guesses I will have a prize for the winner.

Let the guessing begin. Good Luck!

07/24 216.4 lbs
8.4 lbs. to go

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

So What's Next? Part 2

So far this week my commitment to getting my weight loss back on track has not gone so well. I know I just made the commitment yesterday... but... well this may be harder than I thought. I am still committed though. I just have to get back in the grove and that may take a few days or weeks...hopefully days. It's all about thinking about my actions and exercising some will power... and avoiding meetings with food...lots and lots of food.

Enough on that.

On to what's next.

This is the exciting stuff you have all been waiting to hear. What is my next challenge going to be.

I have conquered the 5K.

I have mastered the Triathlon.

So what feat will I attempt next.

How about another Triathlon. For starters.

On Monday I singed up for the Brewhouse Triathlon in Duluth. The race is on August 3rd. A couple of the people I work with who each did one triathlon have been telling me how silly it is to train so hard and only do it once. It is something they very much regret. And I for one think they are right...besides you get a really cool pint glass at this race.

The Brewhouse race is slightly longer than last weekends race. 1/3 Mile Swim, 10.3 Mile Bike and a 2.5 Mile Run.

After that I will be doing Lauren's Run For a Reason! in Maple Grove. A 5K to benefit the Sudden Unexplained Death In Childhood Program. That is the following weekend on August 10th.

This will be my sisters first 5K race and I figured since I want to be there to support her, I might as well run the race as well.

Beyond that I hope to get one or two more races in this fall including the James Page Blubber Run 5K in October, which follows almost the exact same course I run here at work.

But wait there is more. I am officially announcing for the first time (except to my Lovely Wife) that I am committed to doing a 10K race before the end of the year.

Nike has this thing going on on August 31, called the Human Race 10K. It's a total gimmick to sell more Nike Pus thingies... but I am a sucker for a gimmick, so I'll be doing it.

They have like 25 official races around the world and then everyone else is supposed to run with their Nike Plus and upload their time to the website. A friend of mine said he would borrow me his Nike Plus, so I figure I will give it a try.

It won't be my official 10K, it will be a low key, no pressure trial run.

Right now I am tentatively planing on making my first 10K the Autumn Woods Classic on October 11th in Maple Grove. I say tentatively based on social calender and training schedule. But that is what I am shooting for.

There will for sure be more Triathlons in my future... whether I try for a long course remains to be seen.

I am also toying with the idea of trying a half marathon, but I am not ready to commit to that yet either. Both the long course tri and the half marathon will take more training time, time I am not sure I have right now.

I am itching to push myself though, both for the motivation to keep working out and to see just what I am capable of.

More on all of this as the time for each event draws closer.


Tuesday, July 22, 2008

So What's Next? Part 1

So, what's next for me?

It's a question I have been asking myself a lot this past week.

I have some thoughts on what else I want to accomplish physically, but I'll talk about that tomorrow.

What is on my mind right now is getting my weight loss journey back on track. As happy as I am with my current weight, it was never my intention that this would be my final weight.

I have basically been in a maintenance mode since January. While I did hit a new low in April, I quickly bounced back up and have pretty much been floating between 218 and 216 ever since. A lot of this has to do with my training for the 5k and then the Triathlon. Since those things were more exciting and more immediate my focus just natural went towards working out.

Looking at the pictures from the triathlon just reinforced my desire to continue on my weight loss journey. I am really, really proud of what I have done so far, but there is nothing like standing side by side shirtless with a bunch of world class athlete's to remind you how far you have to go.

I say that jokingly, but in all honesty my health journey has always been two fold. First and most importantly I wanted to get in shape, I have done that. But secondly I have always wanted to work on toning my body. I'm not looking for a six pack, but a 3 pack wouldn't be so bad. The fact is, no matter how hard I work in the gym, if I still have 30 pounds of excess fat on my middle those muscles are not going to show through.

So, I think it is finally time to make a real effort to get to my next weight loss goal of 208.

Towards that end I plan to get back to tracking calories and sticking with it this time. I'll also be taking a hard look at what and how much I am eating now and I am going to do my best to get better at watching what I eat all week not just Monday - Friday.

Laura and I have also made a pact to start holding each other accountable again, which will make a huge difference in us being succesful.

I am at a very different stage of weight loss now, and I have yet to take the time to figure out how this new body of mine is going to work. I guess now is that time.

Like I have said all along, this journey is far from over.


Monday, July 21, 2008

A Few More Race Day Thoughts

Scroll down for the full race day report.

I have to point out that race day was a huge success for more than just me.

My Brother-In-Law Evan finished the race in under an hour at 59:21. Which is a huge accomplishment for his first time out.

My dad finished the race at 1:03:42. This was my Dad's 3rd or 4th time doing the race and this was his best time so far. A new personal Record after taking a break for 6 years. Prety darn good if you ask me.

Dad also finished in 50th place on the bike out of 388 racers.

As for me I had a lot of things I am happy with besides my finish.

1. I finished the swim only 26 seconds behind Evan, and he has been training like a mad man for this race...with a lot of conentration on the swim.

2. My Dad didn't pass me until the last 8 minutes of the race. From the very beginning I assumed that I would finish the swim before my Dad and then he would pass me within the first few miles of the bike. For me to stay ahead of him for almost the entire race was amazing to me. I think the thought that he was going to pass me at any second is what pushed me to fly so fast through the bike course.

3. I finished less than a minute behind my dad.

My dad has always been the epitome of fitness in my life. He has been the unattainable role model in my journey to getting fit and he has been my benchmark for many of my achievements. The thought has always been "Well my dad is the most in shape guy I know, so If I can be even close to what he can do then I have to be doing really good."

I had no allusions about beating my dad in this triathlon, my goal was to finish less than 10 minutes behind him and my brother-in-law Evan. So for me to finish 5 minutes behind Evan and less then a minute behind my Dad, well that is the biggest accomplishment of all.

I have no clue who the rest of the people I raced against were. I don't know how hard they trained or what kind of shape they are in. I know that Evan and my dad are in amazing shape and that they trained hard. The fact that I was able to finish so close to them, out of all of my race day victories, that is the one I am most proud of.


Race Day Pics And Vids

Me, Evan, Dad And Teresa crossing the finish line.

My Bike To Run Transition

Waiting For Our Heat To Start.

And We're Off!
That's me towards the back with the orange stripe on my suit.

Finishing The Swim.

On The Bike.
Next Time I think I'll Wear a Shirt...'Cause who want to be chasing that?

Bike To Run Transition.

Nearing The Finish Line!
Time Lapse Style.

Evan at the Finish

Dad at the Finish

The Triad of Triumphant Triathletes

The Full Race Report

Leading up to race day I was a bundle of nerves. I had not been sleeping well all week, but Saturday night I slept like a baby and when I woke up on Sunday morning I was surprisingly calm. A sort of Zen state had taken over. Sure I was excited but the nerves really weren't there.

I worked a lot on being mentally prepared for the day. I think that helped.

We got to the race course and things started flying. We got our race day packets, got our numbers marked on our arms and our legs, got our race chips and set off to set up our transition area.

I am amazed how fast the two hours went between arriving at the race and the start time.

The whole day was kind of like that, a blur.

My Dad and Evan (my brother-in-law) and I were all in the last heat of the day, heat 17. So we got to see how everything worked while we waited for our start time. Once we got on to the beach to start the swim I was feeling pretty confident that I knew what to expect.

I decided to hang back a little in the swim so I didn't get freaked out by the surge of swimmers all starting at once. Turns out I may have been better off trying to jump out front. I was probably a better swimmer than half the people in my heat, so I ended up having to swim around a lot of people.

The swim is still a blur. I can't believe how well it went and how little I needed to rest. I got out of the water and I was feeling tired but pure adrenaline was pushing me to go, go, go. And I saw my family right there cheering me on which helped give me an extra bit of speed going up the beach.

It was a long barefoot run on blacktop to get to my changing station for the transition to the bike. Again this part is all a blur. I feel like I made my transition really well, but I couldn't tell you what I did good or bad. I was on auto pilot.

The bike was by far my favorite part of the race, and it shows in my time. I was flying. My average speed on the bike was almost 3mph faster than my workout average. I passed a ton of people too, which made me feel good.

We all had our heat numbers marked on the back of our leg so it became a fun game to see how many people I could pass from the most heats in front of me.

About a mile into the bike I meet up with a guy who seemed to have the same pace as I did. We spent the whole race jocking back and forth and had some fun banter going on. It was just one of the many ways I felt like I really belonged in this place.

The bike to run transition went a little less smooth. Through no fault of his own my brother-in-law knocked over the bike rack so all our stuff was lying on the ground. It threw me for a loop, but I recovered pretty fast and hit the road.

The run was by far my least favorite part of the race. My legs felt good but I was losing steam fast. It is amazing to me how far 2.5 miles can feel. There were three water stations on the run, and every time I hit one I thought to myself this has to be the turn around. And every time my will broke just a little more. But I kept on running. I was tempted to take a walk break a few times but I knew I could make it, and somehow I kept on going.

Turns out I wasn't going as slow as I thought either. My split times on the run are almost 30 seconds faster than I was doing in practice. Gotta love that adrenaline.

As I rounded the corner to come into the finish area, I started thinking,"I have to put on a good show", so I kicked it in to high gear and out and out sprinted for the last two or three hundred yards.

As I crossed the finish line I heard the announcer say my name and I got a little misty, but before I had a chance to get all emotional I was swept into the athletes area where my timing chip was removed and then I was herded to the food tent and all I could think about was getting some water in me. So while it was an extremely emotionally victory there was not a lot of time for the emotions to take hold.

All in all it was one of the best days of my life. And I am so happy I was able to share it with my Dad and Evan and Teresa and Judy and my wonderful wife and my adorable kids and all of my family.

This is an Accomplishment with a capital A. One to go in the books. Never in a million years would I have thought this is something I could accomplish...and accomplish well. Heck, never in a million years would I have thought this is something I'd want to accomplish.

Think about it. 1 year ago I couldn't run for more than 2 minutes with out fear of losing my lunch and know I am a triathlete. That is something you can never take away from me.

Although, to put all this self backslapping into perspective, there was a guy at the race who had lost 360 pounds and he completed the long course, which was more than double what I did and it sounded like he has become a tri regular. So I can't get to high and mighty, since there are a lot of people out there with more amazing stories than mine.

Then again...I do feel very proud!

Thanks again for all the cheers and support and encouragement. And thank you so much to all my loving family and my loving wife for being so amazing during this whole period. I know I can get a little obsessed so I really appreciate your patience and understanding.



There is no other way to describe the weekend. It was absolutely awesome. Everything I wanted and hoped it would be.

First the big news. I finished! But we all knew I was going to do that. I did way better than finish, I blew all of my expectations out of the water.

Here are the results:

Total Time: 1:04:30

Overall Place 148 / 388
Gender Place 99 / 180
Division Place 21 / 33
Swim time 8:39
Swim pace 1:58/100 Yards
Swim place 67
Bike time 27:11
Bike mph 19.9
Bike place 137
Run time 23:58
Run pace 9:36
Run place 226

I will follow up with a more detailed race wrap up with tons of pictures and video in a little while.