Friday, August 1, 2014

Analyze. Strategize. Succeed.

“As I was taught at Six Sigma. Analyze. Strategize. Succeed. A.S.S. I’m going to crush this problem…with my ASS.” ~Jack Donaghy, 30 Rock

Alec Baldwin as Jack Donaghy

It’s hard to believe that a week has already gone by since we loaded up the truck and drove to Windsor for the pre-race meeting. I've been thinking a lot about the race, what I did, what I would do differently. Honestly, in terms of the race itself, I don’t have any nagging regrets. What I look back on and think I would change is my training.

2013 vs. 2014
The chart above shows the number of instances (workouts) followed by the miles. This is for the period of mid-May through the day before Barb's Race. I used mid-May as the start because I didn't get my Garmin until mid-May 2013. 

  • I did seven less swim workouts, but my workouts were longer.
  • If I take out the "miles" calculated for the trainer rides, my cycling was basically the same. 
  • Running was around 42 miles less because of my Achilles problems


Although, there are a few months left in the triathlon season, it’s time for me to change things up and start to think about next season. I re-took the self-evaluation in the “Triathlete’s Training Bible”. My weak areas remain strength, speed, and focus...just like last year.

No problem with endurance ;-)

Obviously, if I want to increase my strength, a certain amount of strength training is going to have to be added to my routine. I am probably going to incorporate things like P90X – Legs & Back and maybe some other lower body workouts from P90X2 and 3. P90X3 is probably the best choice because the workouts are only 30 minutes which would allow me to do them in the morning before work. Speed is going to take some research. I need to figure out what I need to do differently in order to improve in this area.

NOTE: Mr. T pointed that I went injury free for a long time while I was still doing P90X on a regular basis. 

Now that my big race is over and my legs are feeling better, I am definitely going to start working on these things. 

The Plan

The plan is to M-I-X things up! I need to do this for a number of reasons:
  • Tired of the same thing week in and week out 
  • I need to take my fitness to the next level...need to get stronger and faster
  • Still working towards my goal weight

I need to work on my open water swimming…specifically sighting.

Last year, my official swim time was 33:34. This year my official swim time was 35:45. A full two minutes slower. This number is a little disheartening because I spent a lot more time in the pool putting in yards and trying to improve. Meh!

Been busy on eBay

I know the slower time is also due in part to my race strategy…of conserving my energy early in the day so I would have something left for the run. However, I hate seeing times increase.

Before Barb’s Race, I was swimming on Monday and Wednesday evenings as well as Friday afternoons. Heck, we even had a few open water swims on Saturdays. If I didn’t have a running injury at the time, I would have cut back on this number.  Obviously, all the extra time in the pool really didn’t pay off for me and I think my time would be better used cycling or running.

CHANGE: Swim on Monday and every other Friday AM.


I spent a lot of time on the trainer prior to Barb’s Race. It was basically my only option as our last “team” ride was June 21…over a month before the race.  I need to get longer rides in on Saturdays. Thankfully, HS is wanting to ride more as well, so this will work out well for us.

In terms of speed on the bike, I still get the feeling like I’m not pedaling efficiently or with enough power so I ordered Spinervals 38.0 DVD…“Develop Technique and Power”.

Another eBay purchase
Spinervals 38.0 Develop Technique and Power
"Getting faster on the bike requires a combination of greater mechanical and metabolic efficiency. In this workout, you'll do a series of highly effective pedaling drills to improve your smoothness and pedaling action, followed by a set of high intensity sprint sets to maximize neuromuscular coordination. Perform this workout periodically throughout your training plan and you'll be amazed by your improved performance on the roads.”
CHANGE: Instead of swimming on Wednesday, I am going to do the W.A.R. until it ends in October. After that point, I will start doing Spinervals workouts. This is a pretty brisk ride, so I’m hoping it will help me with my speed. An added bonus is the calorie burn. This week I burned 1350+ calories on the ride compared to 350 in the pool.


Now that Barb’s Race is over, I ‘m going to return to my Tuesday night Fleet Feet runs. I miss seeing all the familiar faces and having a group to run with.

I have been doing some research on pool running and like what I see. As long as the weather holds out, I’m going to add a little pool running on Thursdays (my “rest” day).

Sundays are once again going to be my “long run” days with a run on Friday afternoons. When the W.A.R. ride ends, Wednesdays will also become a “run” day or a bike trainer day depending on how my legs feel.

CHANGE: Increase miles.


Earlier this year I did an "experiment" which failed miserably! It cost me a good two months of my time and set me back several pounds. I am not going to make that same mistake again.

I am going to continue with my current "diet", for lack of a better word. This particular plan helped me get to the point where I was at least 5 lbs. lighter than last year at Barb's Race. This includes weighing myself (no avoiding the ugly truth after a long weekend) and writing it down!

Potential Races


  • The Triathlon at Pacific Grove
  • Tarantula Run
  • Golden State
  • Salmon Duathlon
  • CIM


  • Kick Start Duathlon
  • 70.3 Monterrey (just seeing if HS actually reads my entire post)
  • Ice Breaker
  • Ave of the Vines
  • Tri for Real #1
  • Tri for Real #2
  • Vineman/Barb's Race