My Amazing Super Food

This past week, I've experimented with a new "Super Food" powder with a very funny name (at least to me it's funny).  The product is called Amazing Grass. Yep.  I'm not joking.  More like snickering and remembering college.

Anyway, I've been interested in fruit and vegetable supplements for months.  While I eat carrots, bananas, berries, apples, dried apricots and "tangelos" regularly, I don't eat enough of the green stuff overall.  Since my buddy Bob is holding out on me with his own special fruit/veggie supplement connection (yep, I'm callin' you out, friend!), I've been searching for assistance on my own.

I ventured to the Whole Foods near my condo where I was greeted by "Dave" in the vitamins section.  He had a propensity for calling me "bro" and saying things like, "You can really pound three of these a day and feel totally great, bro!."

Yep, I'm not joking.

After listening to my needs (something to help fill the gap between what I should consume for fruit/veggies and what I actually do), Dave immediately pointed to the Amazing Grass products.  So, having a bad experience with "super food" that tastes like sewer sludge, I bought four sample-size packets (instead of the nearly $80 I spent trying Brazier's products) to see if I could get this stuff down: "Green," "Chocolate," "Berry" and "Energy."

Overall, I'm a big fan of Amazing Grass (cue snickering).

I noticed an energy boost when trying "Green," "Chocolate" and "Berry", though ironically I can't claim the same sensation for the "Energy" sample.  I tried the energy sample this afternoon, so called because it has 85 mg of natural plant-based caffeine in it.

Sorry, but doesn't that last part sound a little like cocaine to you?  Yeah, I was a little worried about that too.  Apparently it gets its kick from yerba mate and matcha.

If "Energy" makes me perform like Macca I'm interested...but I'm not feelin' it.

That said, the "Green" Amazing Grass helped me fight off an oncoming head cold in less than 24 hours earlier this week.  I was shivering and stuffed up at night on the same day I ingested the "Green" sample. The next day, I felt fine.  Almost 100%.

Yep, I'm not joking.

As for taste, it's not the worst thing I've consumed.  That's about the most ringing endorsement I can give.  (I don't think they'll put that on the back of the box though.)  The good (or bad) news is that each of the supplement samples I tried all tasted about the same, with the "Energy" supplement being arguably the best due to more of a green tea taste.  But that's just my opinion. All I can say is that "Chocolate" doesn't taste like the chocolate we know and love.  Neither does Berry.

How's this for a better tagline: Amazing Grass: "A taste you get used to!"

I'm going back to Whole Foods this weekend to make my Amazing Grass purchase.  I'll talk to my bro Dave about which of the four options is the "best" for my needs/lifestyle.  And I'll write back to let you know how I feel in the coming weeks or months.

I wonder if Amazing Grass will be a gateway to other Super Foods?

165 days and counting.

Weight for Me!

My scale must have malfunctioned this morning. My eyes must have been bleary.

So I stepped off the scale, reset it and stepped back on again.

Nope, that number is accurate: 127.5 pounds.

Cue "Home Alone" face!

I realize that my Ironman training has picked up in volume and intensity over the past couple weeks.  But I've experienced harder workouts over a longer period and kept my weight in the 130s neighborhood.  What has changed?  I don't feel like I look any different than I did before.  I'm consuming the same quantity of food and water each day.  At least it seems that way.

I've even included ice cream more often in my diet.  With Coach Gerardo's blessing even!

As you can tell, I'm a bit concerned.  I've always been skinny and I think I'm tapping into some insecurities from elementary, junior high and high school.  Hell, in college my first fraternity pledge name was Twiggy. So today I've been on an eating binge.  A food assault.  French toast, three scrambled eggs and bacon for breakfast.  An apple for a snack.  A huge plate of Mediterranean food for lunch.  A banana for a snack.  A large dinner with Stephanie shortly.  Do I need snacks in between my snacks?  One thing I will be returning to are my homemade protein shakes: Jay Robb whey protein (chocolate), flax seed oil, frozen fruit, and peanut butter.  That will hopefully pack on the pounds once again.  And by "pack," I really only mean three to five extra pounds.

As I mentioned in last evening's blog post, I've lost almost 10 pounds during my Fortius Coaching experience.  But that's not the whole story.  Since I returned to a healthy, fitness-driven lifestyle at the end of 2007, I've dropped close to 30 big ones.

Now, I'm afraid of losing too much weight.  I need a little bit of fat for that 140.6 leviathan coming soon.  Maybe my decrease in weight has affected my training performance?  Could that be why I bonked so hard last Sunday?  I'm not sure there's a connection there, but I think my weight loss is a contributing factor.

So if you're meeting up with me over the next few days and a restaurant is involved, I'd suggest warning them that a ravished mad man is about to descend upon them.  And G-d help them if it's a buffet.

I'm about to declare war on food.  And nothing, especially my own kitchen, is safe.

99 days and counting.

(Man, seeing double-digits is weird!)

What's the Catch?

Shannan, a genius of a personal trainer whom I credit for first whipping me into shape a couple years ago, gave me a magic pill the other day. Not that magic pill.

The pill is called beta alanine.  Apparently, it's an amino acid that helps build muscle, reduce fat and provides prolonged energy.

What's the catch?

Shannan swears by it, and I didn't find anything "bad" about beta alanine online.  You have to careful how many pills you take because too many can cause tingling of the fingertips and thinned blood flow.  Yesterday prior to my run/lift workout, I took a beta alanine pill.  This morning, 12 hours later, I had a lot more energy than usual when I dove into the pool.  I sustained that energy throughout the workout, and after a brief 20 minute powernap I spun on the trainer for another hour.  It wasn't until around noon today that I started to come down from my energy high.  No major crash. No jitters.  No side effects other than being wide awake at 5 a.m. after 6.5 hours sleep, resulting in a half hour of checking work emails prior to swimming.  Usually I need to be kicked out of bed -- almost literally -- by Steph at around 5:45 a.m.


Normally I'd say yeah.  But who wants to get out of bed at 5?  And I didn't know that prolonged energy was a beta alanine side effect until I emailed Shannan this morning.

Growing up, I was taught to believe that if something sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

So what's the catch here?  I felt great, my heart rate didn't explode, I enjoyed sustained energy and better productivity and wasn't jittery in any way.  I'm asking around to see what other people know about beta alanine.  I'm afraid to keep using it as if it was a narcotic.  Something this seemingly helpful can't be good for you.  Can it?

I will probably pop another beta alanine tomorrow an hour before my Griffith Park brick.  I'll let you know how it goes. If anyone out there in blog land has experience with beta alanine, please let me know.

116 days and counting.

Spinning Head

Usually, my body is sore and I'm physically spent after a Saturday brick workout. Despite the heat and a nearly three-hour time time trial, it's my brain that hurts the most right now.

Don't worry, mom, I didn't crash!

Following our weekly Fortius group training session, Coach Gerardo led a Vineman 70.3 pre-race preparation discussion with Richard, Ann, Mike, Karen and me.  He's a great resource considering he has completed the Vineman course four times, and Mike has done it before too.

I think my head is spinning even more than my legs did pedaling up Mulholland Drive this morning!

I came home and am blogging almost immediately to capture as much information as possible.  In fact, before the "pretty" form you see here and below, I literally brain-dumped out as much as I could remember.

I'm labeling it as Pre-Race, Transitions and Race for those of you also preparing for other Half-Ironman events -- at Vineman or elsewhere.


  • Bring a second pair of socks
  • On Friday, get to the beach by 4 p.m. before it closes.
  • Running bag needs to be delivered on Saturday and should contain salt tablets, fuel belt, extra gels and bars, hat, extra sunblock and extra pair of socks.
  • Bring bike to packet pick up to bike the run course.


  • Put baby powder in my shoes and on my feet, along with generous helpings of tri-glide to avoid blistering
  • There's apparently a 30% grade coming out of the T1 chute.  Gerardo is suggesting clipping the shoes on the bike to ensure a safer run up the hill and putting on the shoes either while moving on the bike or at the mount point. I'm not sure what I'm going to do about this since I haven't practiced those kinds of transitions.  That's something I need to do in the future.
  • Don't fill water in my fuel belt water bottles until the first aid station, where the water will be cold and help me avoid cramping.


  • Knock off a little of the pace on the bike to preserve for the run
  • Avoid people hosing you down during the run as much as possible.  Keep feet dry.
  • If warm out, wear arm coolers under wetsuit during swim.  If not, save for T1.
  • Eat breakfast at least 2 hours before your wave time.  Make sure you consume at least 600 calories.  Considering I burned 1,500 calories in just shy of three hours today in 80-something degree heat, I'm surprised it's not even higher.  Then again, we should be eating and drinking throughout the bike ride.
  • Red-tinted or clear-tinted sunglasses will be most effective dealing with the sun reflections on the bike at the race.  I have neither. Hmm.  Dark glasses will be the worst.  Those, I have.
  • Pace your own race.  Don't get caught up in competing with others.  This is going to be the most difficult thing for me to avoid.  I need to find a way to control my competitive urges.  I'll have to focus on looking at my watch, not others.
  • Watch the hills on the bike and don't be over-aggressive on climbing them.  Save your energy for the run.

Overall, the three most important tips are:

  • Knock a little off the bike race pace to conserve energy on the run.  Same goes for the swim.  It's better to lose a few minutes in the water and on the bike rather than up to an hour on the run due to dehydration.
  • Race nutrition is everything.  I should basically be drinking a full water bottle per hour on the bike, and possibly an added bottle if it's hot.
  • Run your own race.  Stay within yourself.  Pacing!  This is not a sprint or Olympic triathlon.  According to Gerardo, a Half-Ironman is the most difficult race to get right when it comes to pacing and proper nutrition.  It's a very fine balance between pushing too much and too little, and the consequences are severe when doing the latter.  Since this is my first Half-Ironman, I'm especially nervous about learning about this point the hard way.

I'm sure I forgot more than I remembered.  But this should help keep me on track during the race.  Not mentioned today but rather during my swim this past Thursday is to focus on flow and not mechanics in the water.  If I can keep my breathing in check, that should help a lot.  I found a real good breathing cadence during my 1,000 yard time trial, which netted me a personal-best 18:27.  My pace per 100 yards is now 1:52, down from 2:05 in the pool when I first started.  This also came less from worrying about my stroke and concentrating more on my breath.  My new swim PR time led Gerardo to predict it should take me roughly 37 minutes to swim 1.2 miles at Vineman.  We'll see how close he is.  So far, every time he's predicted a pace result for me, he's been pretty much right on the nose.

I hope he predicts a 5:30 Half-Ironman!  Though I suspect I'll be in the 6:00-6:30 range depending on the heat.

OK, I'm heading into the final week of Half-Ironman training.  I'm physically ready.  I'm mentally prepared.  The waiting game officially begins tomorrow, during my first weekend non- pre race off-day I can recall since joining Fortius.  I'll spend it with family, watching Le Tour and Spain vs. Netherlands (Espana wins 2-1, btw).  Along with sending Mike off in style for his first Ironman, Lake Placid.

Now, it's time to enjoy the rest of my day and night, which consists of today's Tour stage, burgers and beer with my buddy TJ and Predators.  My kind of night.

And a welcome distraction to take my mind off all these mental checklist items for next week!

133 days and counting.

Dear Arizona: See You in November

(Pre-post apology.  I missed blogging Friday and Saturday.  The hotel we stayed at wanted $15 for internet, which I think is insane.  And we got back from Arizona last night at midnight. So this is a SPECIAL Memorial Weekend round-up!)

You'd think that after more than six months of blogging practically every day about Ironman Arizona, I'd get the sense that the journey is real.

I'd have thought so too, until I actually drove up to Mill Avenue and Rio Salado in Tempe on Saturday to preview the bike and run course.

But a funny thing happened as I drove down Rio Salado into the parking lot of the Tempe Beach park.

I got goosebumps. Big ones.  Hairs on the back of my neck stood on end, saluting the course.

Maybe it was the Linkin Park song on the radio ("What I've done") hitting just as I pulled up to the main intersection.  I think it was the gravity hitting me that this whole charade isn't a pipe dream, even with all the training that has gone into it.  The dream is real, it lives at a real intersection, and in six months it's me against time and the elements.  Right here.

It doesn't get any more real than that.

If I thought all this was a dream, reality smacked me in the face as soon as I got on the bike.  At 8 in the morning it was close to 80 degrees. By the time I finished the bike ride it was in the low 90s.  By the time I finished the run, I was pretty much dehydrated, even with drinking more than a liter of water, consuming multiple Endurolyte pills, gels and Clif Bars.

Note to self: Training nutrition in California does not equal training nutrition in Arizona.

The bike ride was the culprit.  I didn't sweat during most of the ride.  Why?  Well, the constant cross-wind that felt mostly like a headwind swept any moisture I had right off my face, leaving a film of salt on my skin and all over my jersey.  (Speaking of, it seems that the winds are at their harshest looping back off Shea Boulevard on the Beeline Highway and coming back into Tempe on McKellips. The only semblance of a tailwind seemed to come roughly halfway back on the Beeline Highway.  Please, someone correct me if I'm mistaken.) My college years in Tucson had taught me to always hydrate even when I'm not sweating, so I actually had consumed nearly two water bottles filled with Hammer Perpetuum during the nearly 2.5 hour ride.

It wasn't enough.

I found that out the hard way during the run.  I couldn't figure out why my heart-rate wasn't dropping from heart-rate zone 3 even when I was supposed to be in zone 1 for the first 20 minutes. At first, I thought it was a good sign since I felt fine and refreshed. Guess I didn't need zone 1.  Wrong.   The remaining 40 minutes of my run were to be in zone 3, which quickly turned into zone 4 despite my best efforts.  All the while, my speed was roughly one-half to a full mile-per-hour slower than usual.

The funny part about this unfortunate dichotomy  was my inner monologue the entire duration of the run.  Literally, in my head I was talking trash to the bike and run course.  In fact, I was planning my official response on Twitter, of all things.  It went something like this:

"Dear #IMAZ course, your oppressive heat and nasty crosswinds don't scare me. Your ass is mine in November. Hugs, Ryan."

Turns out that doesn't fit in 140 characters. But you get the idea.

I even went as far as likening my training in Scottsdale/Tempe as like Rocky training to fight Drago in Rocky IV.  I could literally replace screaming "Drrrraaaaaggggooooo!!!" atop the mountain with "Irrrrroooonnnnnmmmmmaaaaaaannnnnn!!!!!"

"You ain't so bad!"

It wasn't until later in the afternoon, after about at least three additional bottles of water, Gatorade, and a Myoplex protein drink, that I realized the folly of my ways.

But, I WILL be ready in November for Arizona.  No matter what it brings.  Even if the bike course is 80% cross/head winds.  Even if there's a heat spell.  I will be ready.


And for those of you who read my blog because you want to know more about wedding planning with Stephanie, here's your special update.  We had a great time in Scottsdale.  One of our favorite restaurants and site venues, Sassi, lived up to its expectations in every way.  The food is truly outstanding (the veal chop, pizza di carne, and orecchiette pasta are my big recommendations), the views are stunning and the price is a bargain. We're not sure about the actual wedding location on the property so we're going to continue scouting locations.

We also checked out the Fairmont Scottsdale, which had really great room deals and a truly all-encompassing resort that could make for a fantastic destination wedding.  We need to do more research on this location, but it's still a contender.  Whether we'll be able to handle the heat and critters in September remains to be seen.  Both Steph and I were apparently attacked by a spider lurking in our bed on Friday evening, as Steph has nine welts all over her arms and legs to show for it.  That would seem to be a strike against Scottsdale.

And now, the weekend continues.  Steph and I are going to practice some yoga for a while and then tomorrow we'll hike Escondido Falls in Malibu before meeting my folks for dinner.  And of course, there's three hours on the bike, re-enacting the eighth stage of the Amgen Tour of California. On my tri bike.  Oh yeah!

It's been a fantastic weekend of discovery, insight, and relaxation.

And PS: Arizona Ironman, your ass WILL be mine in November.

173, 172 and now, 171 days and counting.

Eat Well, Train Well

Day 4 of my week off of Ironman training went well.  I slept long, ate large -- including a lunch feast at Cecconi's in West LA -- and generally relaxed. I suppose it was the perfect time for a seminar on nutrition.

Tonight's discussion at Runnergy off Ventura Boulevard in Sherman Oaks was sponsored by Fortius and served as the perfect wake-up call that my respite was drawing to a close.  And that I probably should watch what I'm eating a little more this week.

Though I don't regret for one second the BBQ ribs, McDonald's cheeseburger, chili-cheese hot dog, ice cream, cookies and wild boar pappardelle ragout pasta consumed at various points during the week.

Damn, all of it tasted great!  Makes my mouth water a little just thinking about it.

At least now I can better appreciate just how bad that stuff is for me.  The nutritionist offered several pithy reminders of how diet and proper race nutrition can dictate your performance.  Some examples:

-- Have you "eaten a rainbow" today?  Simply put, picture a rainbow as symbolizing all the colors of the fruits and vegetables you should consume every single day.  Me? Today I got as far as green (lettuce), red (tomatoes), orange (carrots),and  yellow (banana).  Overall, we're supposed to have nine servings of fruits and veggies per day.

-- What color is your pee?  (Hope I'm not getting too personal.) If you're drinking enough water, it should always be clear or near-clear.  If your pee looks like beer then you're dehydrated.  If it's neon green then you've wasted your money on expensive multi-vitamins, which usually only absorb in your body at approximately 30% capacity.

-- How much water should you drink every day?  Believe it or not, divide your body weight in two and take that number in ounces.  For me, that's roughly 66 ounces of water every day, or approximately eight glasses of water (assuming roughly 80z per glass).

-- When it comes to carbohydrates, brown is your friend, white is not.  That sucks, because all the "good" tasting stuff is generally white (rice, pasta, white bread, flour, etc.).  But, the sugar goes straight in and out of your body.  "Brown" carbs (wheats, grains) stay in your system longer.

So what did I do once I heard all this information tonight?

I went home and ate Trader Joe's mint-n-chip ice cream.

Don't. Say. Anything.

That said, I'm getting more and more excited to get back on the training regimen.  I bounded up the stairs at work today, which is a sign that my energy level is returning to normal. I even jogged to a couple meetings today and to my car after work.  I love the feeling of feeling better.  I'm not all the way there yet, but am honestly about 90% now.  Can't wait for the final 10% to kick in!

Who knows, maybe I'll be eager to work out a little in the morning.


243 days and counting.

7 Days til the Marathon and I'm Sick!

I've heard of this phenomenon and was hoping it wouldn't happen to me.  Coach Gerardo told me recently that coming down with an illness in the days leading to a big race typically happens about two weeks in advance.  And it's perfectly normal. Surprise!  I'm sick.  And a giant blitzkrieg at that.

But instead of a fortnight, I've got seven days to rest, hydrate and make sure I don't lose my physical or mental edge before the LA Marathon.


The achey body, sore throat, watery, itchy eyes and hot-to-the-touch skin all struck at once -- about five hours after an otherwise uneventful trail run at Chesebero Park around 9 this morning.  In fact, I did very well on the 30-minute tempo portion, clocking sub-8:00 miles and never exceeding an 8:15 pace.  That said, my plantar fasciitis is acting up on the arch of my left foot, to the point where I could barely walk the rest of the day.

I'm definitely getting worried.  I feel like I'm starting to fall apart.  I suppose it was bound to happen after pushing myself so hard the past few months. Or after a few days of shaking hands with all types of folks at the video games conference. (I even used Purell an ungodly amount of times, what gives!?) But one week before the race? Really?

(Fortunately, all this happened before our afternoon of engagement ring shopping, which went really well!  More details another time when I know she's not reading over my shoulder.)

As Stephanie can tell you though (or my parents), I'm a bit dramatic when I don't feel well.  In fact, can you feel Steph's eye-roll?  Perhaps it's because I'm so used to being in good health that it accentuates my pathetic-ness when those rare moments occur.  Maybe it's because I watched too much Ferris Bueller's Day Off and identified more with Cameron growing up.  Either way, thank goodness for Steph tonight.  She's taking good care of me with Canter's matzah ball soup, lots of herbal tea and cold medicine.  I'm a lucky dude.

To be safe tomorrow, I'm taking the day off work.  I need to rest and sleep as much as possible to beat this with enough time to resume my training pre-race.  It literally is a race against time, and I hope my body is up for the task.

Come on, Ry.  Don't fail me now.

And Ferris, wherever you are, don't even think of calling me.  I so will NOT pick up.

"When Ryan was in Egypt's land...LET MY RYAN GO!!!"

254 days and counting.

4-Minute Blog Post

Instead of the Subway "$5 foot-long" jingle, I'm starting a new one: Four!  Four!  Four-Minute Blog Post!

Here we go!

6 a.m.:  swim with Fortius Coaching team.  Awesome. Fastest sustained 100 intervals yet.  1:52-1:55 pace, stroke cadence down to 20 per 25 yards. Thanks Gerardo and my lane partner, Dierdre!

Sadly, a high school swimmer from Van Nuys High seizured this morning.  Fortunately, he's OK.  His teammates were remarkably mature and supportive, for adults or kids.  I was humbled and happy for our future when I saw their display of sensitivity and compassion.

7:30 a.m.: I ran for an hour and 15 minutes doing six, three-minute intervals between heart-rate zones 4-5.  Using my new Garmin, I realized my mile time is decreasing. I'm on pace for 6:45-minute miles at this point.  Let's see how long I can sustain that though!

8:54 a.m.: On the move to the office to shower and change for work.

9:57 a.m.: At my desk, showered, breakfast in hand, with three minutes to spare.

1:26 p.m.: Returned from lunch after downing three tacos at Sharkey's and fueled up on GU and Hammer nutrition at Bicycle John's in Burbank.

6:18 p.m.: Left work to eat dinner and join the LA Tri Club at the Encino First Thursday social, sponsored by Fortius.  Nope, I didn't win anything in the raffle once again.  But, I loved seeing my fantastic teammates and friends looking their finest. They clean up nicely!

8:39 p.m.: Rushed home, dropped off my dirty gym bag, packed a new one, typed this blog, and am now back on the road for an evening out.  Gotta take advantage of my equivalent of Saturday night since there's no training planned tomorrow.

8:56 p.m.: Shutting down blog, changing clothes, rushing out the door!  Goodnight all!

PS: Thank goodness Ironman training gives you the ability to pack more into your day in a shorter amount of time...on less sleep. I'm living up to my company's studio name: I'm becoming an insomniac!

264 days and counting.

Rough Night

Special edition daytime blog post, courtesy of the President's Day holiday. Is it possible to bonk 12 hours after training?

I had a terrible night's sleep.  First off, I was hot.  Not room temperature hot from a sunny day in California.  Hot, because my body temperature felt like I had a fever.  I was so hot that I woke up, grabbed a Blue Ice bag and kept it affixed to the base of my neck until I cooled down.

I fell asleep with it on.

Then, two hours into my sleep I awoke due to hunger pangs.

Am I pregnant or something?  Seriously, this is what I ate yesterday:

-- Oatmeal with almonds and raisins, along with some Vega Omega-3 oil supplement

-- Clif Bar and energy gel shots

-- Banana

-- 36 ounces of Heed

-- 16 ounces of Recoverite

-- Three-egg cheese, onion and chicken-sausage omelet, with fruit, potatoes and bread

-- Two pieces of meatloaf

-- Sushi, and lots of it

-- Yogurtland (yum!), with lots of Oreos, berries and chocolate chips

Then, at 12:30 a.m., add a second banana.

Then, at 2 a.m., add a half Clif Bar.

Then, at 4 a.m., add the other half of said Clif Bar.

And I still LOST WEIGHT last night!  To the tune of about 2.5 pounds.

Well, I did burn through 6,000 calories in less than 48 hours.  Guess I didn't put back in 6,000 calories worth of nutrition. I sure as heck tried though!  I mean, there's only so much I can physically ingest before I have more traffic "downstairs" than the 405/5 Freeway interchange at rush hour.  I'm already making more pit stops than Danica Patrick in her first NASCAR season!

I'm down to my lowest weight since I've been training.  I'm concerned, to be honest.  I hate looking too thin.  It's a source of insecurity rooted deep in a childhood hanging out with bigger, taller, faster kids and trying to keep up with them on the soccer field, basketball or tennis court. Or at the school dance on a Friday night.

It wasn't easy being the runty but funny short kid that all the girls wanted to call their friend while they asked if I could set them up on dates with my friends.  That stays with you.

But lately, as in the past couple years, I finally felt like I achieved the physique I had always wanted. Toned.  Cut.  Muscular.

It shouldn't matter, not years later, but it was a welcome ego boost.

Unfortunately though, I've heard from one too many good friends in the past couple weeks who have noticed that I'm looking "thin."  This is code for, "Dude, eat something.  Like, now!"  Of course, other friends and even my family have commented that I've never looked better. But, when it comes to something as sensitive as appearances, I tend to hear the negative more than the positive.

It's a little deflating, to be honest.  I'm training so hard.  And I've been feeling so good.  Damn good!  I'm eating everything in sight. I'm trying to keep on the pounds.  But sometimes it's not working.  I think I'm going to go back to the Jay Robb Whey Protein and milkshakes every day.  I was avoiding them after the Brendan Brazier seminar and trying his healthy but awful-tasting Vega products.

Time to get back on the good stuff.

I'm supposed to enjoy an off day from training today following this past weekend's killer regimen.  But, I have a trip to Las Vegas planned for work this Wednesday through Friday.  That means lighter workouts but less time to fit them in.  So, I'm going to trudge to the pool now and do some easy swim recovery laps so I don't have to tomorrow.  That way, I can do my 1.25 hour cycling test tomorrow without worrying about a second workout.

Maybe I'll hit a buffet (or two) on the way back.  Or at least I know of a few in Vegas!

Got anything I can eat?  My fridge is now officially bare.

281 days and counting.

Pizza as Performance Enhancer

Pizza, apparently, is my new performance enhancement drug.

Am I a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle?
Pizza is the only way I can explain today's especially strong workouts. I ate up and spit out 2,200 yards in the pool early this morning, reaching all-time bests in cadence (45 strokes per minute!) and consistent sub-T pace (less than 2:05 per 100 yards)
Then, a few hours later, I crushed an hour run on the treadmill with a series of hill sprints at a 5% grade. I was hungry for more by the time the workout was over.
More training. Not pizza.
The night before, I enjoyed a work-related social event where a few of us got together in the studio for pizza and to watch a movie indirectly related to a project we're working on. (Yep, I know there's a few studio fans who read this, hoping for a scoop. Sorry to disappoint, but no clues today!)
Lately, I've been especially conscious of what kinds of nutrition I'm putting into my body. Even after my meeting with the nutritionist a couple weeks ago, who said I could stand to drink a milkshake or two, I've been hesitant. I'm happy with my appearance, and I have an irrational thought that if I let up on the healthy living for a minute... I'll go back to not looking the way I want. (Yes, I am a little concerned about how that last sentence sounds too, but if you saw how I eat throughout the day, you'd put those worries aside!) But, last night was an exception. Pizza sounded too damn good to pass up. So I splurged. A lot.
I figured I'd be sluggish in the pool as a result, but I felt the exact opposite. Light. Fresh. Strong.
And I have pizza to thank.
OK, maybe two months of consistent training and steady diet may have had something to do with my performance, but c'mon, if pizza did wonders for four turtles then I think we know what really happened here today.
300 days and counting.