Monday, November 27, 2017

Podcasts I Follow

The drive from/to the office is a daily arduous task, averaging almost 1.5hrs one way. Aside from listening to music tunes, I try to keep myself sane by listening to various iTunes podcasts as I make my way thru rush hour traffic from QC to Ayala, Makati and vice versa.

Below is a list of podcasts that I follow so far that have helped me on my daily training in one way or another:


THAT TRIATHLON SHOW

That Triathlon Show - Triathlon PodcastA straight-up informative podcast created by Mikael which I presume to be from Finland, the podcast covers everything you need to know in the sport of triathlon. Yeah I don't do tri but I still find the podcast helpful for my duathlon and running races. He gets to invite regular guests who are very expert in their respective fields so I find this as a free means to get good training advice. He often has these Q&A episodes as well, answering Qs sent by his followers which he is more often than not able to respond to satisfactorily.







TRIATHLETE TRAINING PODCAST

A podcast from Trainingpeaks Coach Eric Schwartz, this is very similar to That Triathlon Show podcast. Aside from inviting experts, he also gets to chat with the athletes he's coached on their training and racing journeys.











STAGES PODCAST

This has to be one of my favorite podcasts to listen to. Run by Lance Armstrong together with JB Hager, it gives listeners a very different and personal view of the different world tour cycling competitions around the world. He started this podcast last July during the Tour de France and it was warmly accepted by the podcast world ---including me. Lance said he will try to do more Stages episodes next year as they'll try to cover more events in 2018. Yup, I will keep my ears glued to this most definitely.









ASK A CYCLING COACH - TRAINERROAD PODCAST


I've been following the podcast trio of Chad, Jonathan, and Nate of TrainerRoad for quite a while before I made a recent Smart Trainer upgrade ---and consequently a TrainerRoad subscription (which I will give a review of in weeks to come). Just listening to their tips has helped immensely in my (ongoing) cycling development. The testimonies of people posting immense FTP increases in their regular episodes had me take a bite onto the TrainerRoad mania so I hope to improve my FTP in months to come. As to their podcast, it posts of a very relaxed vibe as they invite experts and other triathlete/cyclists as guests to provide answers/comments. Parang barkada lang, as my friend +paolo castaneda would put it in terms of how the mood of this podcast is. But Chad, Jon, and Nate's inputs are quite helpful in itself, with or without the TR subscription.


WORK ON YOUR GAME PODCAST



Created by retired Pro basketball player Dre Baldwin, this offers daily mental tips on how to improve on your "game" which could be how you approach work, your training, or just about anything that your trying to achieve at the moment. Duathlons and run races don't just need physical preparations. Your mind also needs to be conditioned to meet (or exceed) the goal. Dre has this covered, and it has helped me a lot in the Nutrilife 21k race that I joined last October by keeping all systems checked physically and mentally as I went on to accomplish the goal that I've set.





So those are the podcasts that I can recommend so far. If you have podcasts that you can recommend, do let me know via the comments section below.

See ya!



Thursday, November 16, 2017

Year End 21k Coming Right Up!

And so, I signed up for this (blindly, hahaha):

It reads "Good Evening Taipei City Invitational Half Marathon"

Reg fee for the 21k race is around PhP1,300.00 when converted to our currency. It took a while for me to reg online as I had to read everything carefully (after Google Translate did a good job on the Chinese language conversion). Racekit can be picked up in the race venue (I hope, hehe). The nice thing about this race is that the 21k gun time will be at 4:30PM with a 3.5hr cutoff time so no pressure on waking up early. The weather should be nice and cold by end December there (I think...and hope) so that should be a good thing for all of us running the half marathon.

I am not sure how the elevation profile for the route will be so I may have to check it out with mapmyrun.com. Hopefully it'll not be a hilly one.

Please be flat :D

So this means I will have to draw up my weekly long run sked until race week (which I've already done) and commit to completing them every Sunday. What's going for me mentally is that I had a good 21k race last month so I just have to recall and improve the way I will approach the training and execution for this race be it pacing and nutrition wise.

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Off Season


Trainingpeaks CTL value has dropped to 50 as of today (from a high of 56 mid Oct due to my 21k race). Laziness and family obligations (birthday and vacations) have crept into this latter part of the year so training volume has really decreased a lot.

As usual, I will need to up the training as my weight is nearing 170lbs again. Yup, I have yet to reach my target 159lbs before the year ends. Keto is an option as most of my officemates are seeing remarkable results, but I love the carbs too much so that it's definitely out. Hehe.

I think I will have to hit pause on off-season mode to get motivated to train again. An option could be the Nov12 National Dua championships but I am in no condition (bike wise) to finish that in good time. Logistics will have to be considered as well since the venue is in Subic.

There's also the annual BGC Cycle event which I can join in the 40k race ---still undecided though.

Another one is a 21k Dec30 sundown race in Taiwan which is highly possible since we already booked plans to spend our Christmas family vacation there this year. This one looks possible since I have enough time from now to bring my running volume up. This is still on the drawing board though so let's see if I will have the balls to register before the Nov16 deadline.

Then again, the cold BER months just want to make you curl up under your blanket and doze these calories away. Hahaha...

Oh well. :D

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Race Review: Nutrilite Health Run 2017

The good:

  1. Great race org in general (as usual from Runrio)
  2. Accurate distance (21k)
  3. Affordable reg fee of P850.00 vs other 21k races (also from Runrio)
For improvement:
  1. The 3am gun start is too early for a 21k. Usually, this is reserved for full marathons.

My race:

I went into this race armed with enough training miles under my belt and a manageable strategy to hopefully meet 2:30.

To cut to the chase, I finished in 2:27+ ---well within my target and still standing.

I stuck to my plan all throughout:
  • Pace 7:00/km for the first 16k, then go all out on the last 5k (averaged 6:45/km here)
  • Gel intake every 45 mins (which ended up around km8 and 14)
  • Trusted my training and hoped for the best
I was monitoring my pace (7/km) and heart rate (not reaching 159, my threshold) constantly. For the latter, it was expected to increase on the short flyover climbs (there were 4) and on the last 5k where I was on the chase. I was all the more inclined on to maintain sub 7/km pace in the last 5k since I saw that I was ran 7:05/km for the first 10 miles. I was more intent then to finish this in sub-2:30 time.

Everything went all according to plan and I was feeling great all throughout, with the good weather (with very slight drizzle) accompanying us 21k runners in the middle of the night. The near flat race course and sufficient hydration stops helped as well, which somehow made we wonder if I will be able to finish sub-2:30 if this were on a hilly course such as BGC/Mckinley.

But I will DEFINITELY take last Sunday's 2:27+ finish, with the thought that at 43 (turning 44 this Sat) I can still finish a 21k race in a respectable time. Further, this was a 16 minute improvement from the TakboPH 21k that I ran last year so another reason for this advanced birthday gift for myself.



All in all, a job well done. 😤


Thursday, October 12, 2017

Nutrilite Health Run: Pre-Race Thoughts

It's a few days before my half-marathon (after a long looong while) and I *think* I'm ready for it.

I did a couple of long runs on weekends (two 16s, a 14, and a 12k) and peppered with tempo and race-pace runs during the weekdays. The typical half marathon plan requires an 18k but I wasn't able to do one so I expect the race to be a challenge after 2 hours of running.

It would be an accomplishment to finish in sub-2:30 but anywhere around it is well ok with me. I read my blog posts years ago wherein sub-2:20s are normal for me for half marys. But I have been training with my bike as well (which I love) so achieving such a time is not possible at this point due to lack of time.

Another thing that I am worried about is the 3am gun start (I didn't practice this) which is normally reserved for full marathons. I don't know why Runrio, the race org, scheduled this waaaay too early. This is one of the bad points in races here in our traffic congested country. Races need to start way early in the morning so that we don't cause traffic jams even on a supposed easy Sunday morning. Races in other countries don't start this early. Yeah, probably the tropical weather too was taken into account but 3 effin' o clock AM? Ugh.

This is why I prefer duathlons (and bike races) since they normally start at 6am (although I was told the recent Powerman Clark started at 7:45am for some of the age groupers. Yikes!).

Anyway, back to my race on Sunday. I hope to do well by keeping my pace and nutrition/hydration in check. As I said, it's gonna be challenging by the latter kilometers but I hope to finish this one in good time.

Here we go!