Category Archives: motivation

Life update, the start of 2017 season and YouTube

I did a life update a little while back and I promised to continue them. Here is life update and the start of the 2017 season.

In that post, you can read it here, I talked about feeling some symptoms of adrenal fatigue. I said that I was taking a supplement that was supposed to help with that. I actually stopped taking said supplement. I am not sure if I wasn’t consistent enough with it or if it wasn’t actually working but I stopped. What I did start doing in putting my phone away from my bed with the alarm on it. Instead of having it right next to me where it was nice and easy to hit snooze, I moved it across the room where I needed to actuallyy GET UP out of bed to shut it off. I have a consistent time for when I wake up and I am trying to stay as consistent as possible when it comes to bed time. I have found that these two things are really helping me.

The last thing that I did not mention in my earlier post but I wanted to throw in here is that I purchased a pair of blue light blocking glasses from amazon. You can find the ones I bought here. These glasses block out the blue light that comes from TV, phone, and computer. From what I have read, blue light basically confuses your brain. Your brain accepts the blue light and gets in confused with the same type of UV light from the sun. When this happens it is hard for your brain to shut off because it thinks it is day time. I have these glasses by my bed or in my bag and I just throw them on when it starts to get dark out. It could be all in my head or it could be that it truly works but for 10-15 bucks, I’ll take that chance any day. Since wearing these glasses I have a MUCH easier time falling asleep when I lay down vs. when I don’t wear the glasses.

The second point I wanted to make was on the intermittent fasting that I started doing in the early months of 2017. It was working very well for staying in a calorie deficit. When I was trying to keep calories down, especially on rest days, using this method DID work. However since then, training has ramped up. The intensity and volume is in full swing right now to prepare for the season. Intermittent fasting has since stopped. I was just not eating enough when I was fasting and the window was too small to try and eat enough to fuel for the next workout. Just as a point of reference I did not see anymore weight drop than if I were just staying strict about my macros for the day. The weight loss was EXACTLY the same, so if you are thinking about doing intermittent fasting because you are going to shed more weight, that is not what I found in the least bit.

Last but not least, RACE SEASON IS HERE!! Wohooo, round of applause. There were times where I thought it was never coming. Sometimes it is hard to think of those goals when you are grinding away for two hours on the trainer and there is snow on the ground. However race season has FINALLY arrived and I couldn’t be happier.

I decided to jump into a small local sprint race this past weekend. It was called the Rivewinds Sprint Triathlon for those of you who are located in the PA, MD, DE, NJ area. If you are looking for a great, small town race feel early in the season I HIGHLY suggest you check this one out. The swim takes place in the Riverwinds Community Center pool and then the bike and run are around the surrounding area. It is a great little race, it is well organized and I really tip my hat to DQ events on this one. If you want to check out their races, I will link them here.

I won’t give you a long winded recap of this race because I know that those can get boring. What I will tell you is that the community center where this took place was beautiful, the swim was well organized, and the course was great. I never touched the person in front of me during the swim and the person behind me never touched me. We did a snake through an 8 lane pool and we were in and out. I made one mess up on the bike which was completely my fault because I was not paying attention and I got off course just a bit. The run was smoking fast on the path through this center and it had a slight uphill right after the turn around at the beginning of the first mile. I had one goal and one goal only for this race, win my age group. I wanted to qualify for nationals early in the year and go enjoy the rest of my Sunday. I looked at some times from last year and saw that 53 minutes won overall and my age group winner was somewhere around 55-56 minutes. I finished the day in 56:13. There were a lot of firsts for me, one being a really solid swim. I looked at my watch as I entered T1 and it read 3:17. This included exiting the pool and running outside so that was probably closer to 3 minutes. Very solid swim for me. The bike was not my best but not horrible in just over 27 minutes for the 10.5 miles and I was only seconds off my PR sprint run split. All in all, it was a great day for me to get out and test my off season fitness.

Now for the bad news. No one in my age group went over an hour on the day. 1-4 overall were all in my age group….Needless to say, I did not win my age group and therefore I have not yet qualified to go back to Omaha. I was disappointed about this. Don’t get me wrong there were a lot of great take aways from this race and I have a lot of good fitness for so early in the season. I just hope that I can continue to carry it into the full swing of this season and punch my ticket to go back to Omaha. Stay tuned!

I thank you guys very much for reading. I look forward to sharing this journey with you on the road to Omaha!

All for now.

Keep FSU and Do It For Yourself.

PS incase you did not know, I have launched a YouTube Channel. I will be documenting my journey to get back out to Omaha here! Please check it out and share your thoughts with me! ❤️

I don’t post on here daily but feel free to find me else where!

Back to the Basics

Its no secrete that I have been slacking with this blog. I felt as though I couldn’t “create” enough content for the readers and so it led to me slacking on this blog. I have been following and consuming a lot of content from Gary Vee and Mike Vacanti and I have learned that putting things out there consistently is far better than not putting anything out there at all. So my vow for 2017 is more consistent posting.

So here it goes….

My year this year with tri was busy to say the least. I had some tune up races early in the season and a late peak. I won’t bore you with the details, I have posted race report from the season that you can read up on those.

One thing that has really been lacking, other than my blog posts, is my nutrition. I haven’t been nearly as locked in with it as I used to be and so I decided to start a Facebook group for No Cheat November. I knew I needed to get back on track and this would be the perfect way. The month started and it was back to basics for me. Tracking calories and macros, eating the right foods and cutting out the crap. Yes this means no soft pretzels 3X a week, sometimes more. It was hard at first, I’m not going to lie. I knew I needed to do it and I knew that I could do it, but for some reason, getting rid of this 25-30 pounds that I put on, was harder than when I first started.

I knew what I had to do, it was just bringing myself to do it! So the group was perfect, holding each other accountable. It worked very well and we actually decided to continue the group through the holidays.

When I started the group and the clean up though, I had one thing that I wanted to give a try and I was nervous. Intermittent fasting has always peaked my interest, why I don’t know, I love food but I always thought it was never possible. How on earth could someone skip breakfast and not eat until like 1-2pm?! I decided from the start I would do it on rest day, I would be trying to keep calories low this day anyway and wouldn’t be training so it made sense.

The first time I did it, it was kinda like the first time you take your kid to the doctor, I had no idea what I was in for but once I got there I found out real fast what was going on. The only thing I had from dinner the night before until lunch was black coffee and green tea. In the following weeks, I almost looked forward to the challenge. I knew what I was in for but I was ready for the pain. In some sick twisted way, I am convinced that I just love pain. There is really no other explanation for it to be honest.

Since then I have begun fasting everyday except for days when I know I will be training 2+ hours. It’s something that you think is impossible and then you try it and it’s really not that bad. I usually eat dinner pretty late because I train after work. Dinner is usually between 8-9pm after training. From there its nothing for 16-17 hours except for black coffee, green tea, and water. I was against the idea of gum at first but its negative calories (you burn more chewing than what’s in the gum) so I also have gum from time to time.

Here is the other key, when I break my fast I am not eating burgers and fries and whatever I want like these “trainers” you see on Instagram. I still keep things clean and as always I am conscious of my macros. If it is something that interests you give it a shot!

There are many benefits to intermittent fasting depending on if you can make it work with you schedule. The whole idea of “breaking the fast” in the morning is no longer 100% the only way to go. If you are trying to stay in a calorie deficit and you’re not training this can be difficult. With intermittent fast I typically skip about 500 calories from breakfast and another 200-250 in a snack that I would have mid morning. If you are interested in the more detailed explanation of how this could help you, stop over to Octane Athletics blog and read this article from Blake, he goes in depth on everything you need to know if you want to give it a try! http://www.octane-athletics.com/intermittent_fasting/

As far as everything else goes it is just back to the basics for me, thats what this post is all about. Back to black coffee, lots of protein, healthy complex carbs and just getting shit done. Don’t get me wrong I will have plenty of beers through the holiday, pie on Christmas, and everything in between. But then it’s right back on track. That’s the biggest thing I have found so far, is that before when I would have a little slip, the wheels would fall off, now however its back to normal and I am thankful that I can recognize that.

Thank you to everyone who joined the Facebook group and shared your thoughts and journeys for the month of November. I plan to keep it open through the New Year so if you are a reader and you would like to join the link is right here https://www.facebook.com/groups/370960176573403/

My attempt to be more consistent with this blog from now on is 1-2 posts per week. I am going to do a reverse bet (shoutout to Mike) and if I don’t do that then I will need to do something that makes me even more uncomfortable. Leave your comments below and share something you plan to do in 2017 that will make you better!

Until next time, all for now.
Keep FSU and Do It For Yourself

Why Motivation Sucks, by Kyle of KJ Healthy Way

Got your attention, didn’t I? Let me start by saying motivation doesn’t suck. I am a big believer in motivation and its power to galvanize action. But motivation is only just that, a spark. It is a jumpstart to your day or pick-me-up when you need to push through. It will not carry you through the finish line all on its own. The title really should have been “Why Motivation is an excellent tool for starting you on your journey towards your goals or helping you sustain your efforts while pursuing them but should not be as the sole instrument to achieve success,” but, then I didn’t.
Motivation is kind of like a drug; you get that first hit and BAM, you’re flying high. Eventually, the high of the motivation wears off and you’re left with that need for more. Take another hit, you’re flying again. This time though, you don’t have that same amount of intensity you had the first time. But you get your fix. You repeat this process until you just don’t get that same rush, that same crazed intensity you had the first time. Eventually, whatever you’ve been using for motivation just doesn’t work anymore and you look for another form of motivation to get you that same “high” you had the first time.

Here’s an example: I watch the Rocky IV training scene where Rocky is training in the Russian wilderness and Ivan Drago is in the Russian lab training with new age equipment (one of the best Rocky training montages in my opinion). I get motivated to start training and get in shape. The next morning, I’m up before the sun and out the door running, you know, like Rocky would. I feel great and I have a fire in my belly to keep pushing until I look like Rocky (in Rocky IV, not the original Rocky). I am able to sustain this intensity until midway through the month, when my motivation starts to wane. I’m not quite looking like Rocky yet and I’m tired and sore and don’t really feel like getting up early and running anymore. Watching Rocky training montages isn’t doing it for me and I’m getting sick of listening to “Eye of the Tiger” on repeat. I abandon my “training” and, most importantly, wonder where my motivation went.
Maybe not an applicable example for everyone but definitely something you can relate to. Everyone needs motivation to get you started or to help get you out of a slump with your training. But motivation will fade and you need something else to, not only sustain your efforts, but to help build a lifestyle around your goals. How can you do that, you ask?
You need to build Systems into your life that allows you to create a sustainable lifestyle and not a transient state of excitement.

A System is not a robot or software that does stuff for you (although, if you can make this happen, contact me). The best way to describe a System you probably already use is where you put your car keys. When you walk in the door after a day of work, you put your car keys in the same spot; on the counter, in a dish by the door, a hook on the wall. You’ve developed a System for placing your keys in a convenient spot so you can effortless grab them as you’re heading out the door. It is automatic and you don’t even think about it anymore. It is a System that you’ve built for your morning routine.

So how do you build Systems into your daily routine so you make proper nutrition and exercise automatic? I’m glad you asked.

Systems for Exercise:

  • Pack a gym bag the night before and place it by the front door or in your car
  • Schedule your workouts on a calendar or your phone calendar or Google calendar (so many calendars)
  • Hire a personal trainer or prepay for a month’s worth of sessions
  • Put your alarm clock or phone alarm across the room so you have to get up to turn it off
  • Wake up 1 hour earlier…do it
  • Buy some simple workout equipment like resistance bands and a yoga mat that you can take anywhere
  • Purchase a workout program or course

Systems for Nutrition:

  • Meal Prep…you know you saw this one coming
  • Pack food like fresh or dried fruit, nuts and seeds, protein powder, tuna pouches at work and in car so you always have something with you
  • Buy food containers so you can take your prepared food and snacks with you
  • 90-10 Rule – eat clean 90% of the time and the other 10% you can eat what you’ve been craving
  • Remove temptation from your house by removing junk food
  • Plan Meals and shop for those meals
  • Learn 1 healthy meal or recipe per week and put it in rotation

Systems can be used for anything: sleep, work, chores, etc. But, if you noticed when I was listing the Systems above, many of them involve some sort of monetary involvement. This is absolutely by design. By investing in something related to health and fitness, YOUR health and fitness, you are making an investment in yourself. This is a crucial step toward any goal. Additionally, you’re more likely to use or do something you paid for rather than if it is just given to you. There’s something about paying for an item or service that, psychologically, makes you appreciate it a bit more. You’re also more likely to “get your money’s worth” as well.
In summary, Motivation does not suck. Motivation is awesome and necessary. But it not the end-all and be-all to success. Inevitably, it will not always there. Instead, use Motivation to start building Systems into your daily routines. This will ensure you are not always relying on Motivation to push you forward and you will develop a consistent lifestyle.

If you have any questions, comments, or want some more help developing systems, feel free to leave a comment below.
Thank you.

 

kyle

Kyle of KJ Healthy Way

USAT National Championship

This is it, this is the moment that my entire season has been surrounded and it is finally here!

To say I was excited for this small racecation was an understatement. I had never done anything like this before and although there was some stress, things were planned and I couldn’t wait.

I had everything packed and ready to go. I check, double checked and triple checked everything. I had everything I needed and we were ready to rock!

Our flight left early so I left my house with plenty of time to check the bike and get through security. Everything at check in went off without a hitch. I chose to go with the Sci-Con TT bag for my bike. Unfortunately I am at least an hour away in each direction from a shop that does shipping so this was my only option. We also could not get a direct flight to Omaha so my biggest worry was having my bike make the plane change.

When we arrive in St. Louis it was awesome because so many triathletes were at the gate headed to Omaha and it made for great people watching that’s for sure! We boarded our plane to Omaha and my excitement level was through the roof. Things were going so smoothly I almost couldn’t believe it. We arrived in Omaha and now was the moment of truth, did the bike make it? I found my suitcase no problem and then I went over to the oversized door. It opened, three bikes came out and then it closed…..no bike. I WAS DYING!! Then it opened again and out she came. We were on our way!

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We checked in and I got my bike out of the back and there was a nice little note from TSA. Everything was all over the place and I wasn’t happy. I pumped up the tires and made a make shift stand to make sure the gears were ok. Since TSA didn’t put my towel back on my rear derailleur, the hanger was bent. I was freaking out. I called an uber right away and went over to get it fixed. I’ll save the long story, let you know the guys at the tent were amazing and they got me back up and running in no time.

I’ll save the day to day details because it will make for a boring read and I’ll just give you the cliff notes. Friday I woke up, it was my birthday =]. I had coffee and a scone in bed thanks to my wonderful girlfiend, did my shake out and then my buddy Jimbo and his girlfriend arrived! This is when things got really fun. We left the girls at the room and he got to see the pre race check in and everything. Having him there for that brought a sense of calm over me. He kept things light, we joked, we laughed and it kept my head clear and the nerves down.

That night we hit a local Italian joint for dinner. The reviews were great, food looked amazing, so we figured why not. Long story short again, the service was down right god awful. It took 25 minutes for me to get a bottle of water. There was a party of four that sat behind us, got everything before us. It made things a little tense and stressful which I was trying to avoid after Escape the Cape. All in all we finished up, the food was delicious and things were not THAT bad.

Race morning came early! Jimbo was up with me at 4:15, we jumped on the shuttle nice and early and we were off. I set things up and then instead of staying in 165e82b5-cd1e-4689-af6d-92ae949a302ftransition as I normally do, I went out and hung with him. As I said early, he kept me calm and cool. We joked and laughed and it was the most calm I have ever felt on race morning.

The gun went off and before I knew it the swim had come and gone.  I was off my goal by a few minutes but I was happy with it.  As I was coming up swim exit, I had no clue there were metal steps waiting for us.  I took one step and ate it.  I ate it hard, but didn’t think anything about it.

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On to the bike and we were off.  I thought I was a pretty good cyclist, until this point.  I have never been passed by more people in my life.  This is truly the best of the best.  I looked down at my Garmin at one point and again, the best bike split numbers were WAY off.  This time by over 10 minutes.  I got to a point where I actually said to myself, I am ripping this chip off and not finish this race, I am not racing Ironman AC, I am fucking done.

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Needless to say that did not happen, but the thought was there.  When I started the run Jimbo was waiting right outside of transition for me.  I told him my foot hurt pretty bad as we were running out and that I thought about stopping, but I remember him saying “you’re not going to do that, you’re going to finish this damn race!” My foot hurt but I did what I had to do and actually had one of my better 10k’s I have had in quite some time.  It was no PR but it went better than I thought it would thats for sure.  The finish line was amazing, so many people, cheering, noise makers, just absolutely amazing.

35fdd46f-0295-44f7-a252-e34a25898cbfWe wrapped our trip up with a nice dinner Saturday night, great breakfast Sunday morni6d0bb4e5-292a-4aa6-abc6-2492ca8edcffng and then a few red bull and vodkas to easy the pain of having to come home.  Given the chance I will be back in Omaha next year.  This time however we have already planned for a Thursday to Tuesday.  The city of Omaha welcomed us with open arms and as one of our uber drivers said, its one of America’s best kept secretes!

I know this is a long one so I will call it here but I just want to say thank you, thank you, THANK YOU!!! To everyone who texted me, messaged me, called me, and sent me well wishes.  Even from 1,000’s of miles away I truly felt it.  I would be lost without all of you and I can’t thank you enough.  Up next its Tri the Wildwoods Sprint which will hopefully bring a podium to get me back to Omaha!

 

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All for now

Keep FSU and Do It For Yourself

I don’t post on here daily but feel free to find me else where!

Sacrifice

 

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Triathlon, quite possibly one of the most selfish sports of all time.  Think about it, how many sports out there require long hours of solo training away from friends or family?  Am I saying this to scare you? NO! Not at all however this sport takes sacrifice and anyone who is considering joining or stepping up to a longer distance I feel as though this is something that everyone underestimates.  Let’s talk about some ways to keep your friends and family happy while you still hit your goals in things you love.

I am going to give a few tips that will help you balance life, work and your family while you are training this season.  Let’s face it, the spring is right around the corner, they are calling for temps in the 70’s here on the east coast next week.  If you want to have a successful season and keep everything balanced, read on.

Be open with everyone around you.

Whether you are new to the sport or a seasoned vet this is something that EVERYONE should do.  Tell the people around you about your goals and aspirations for the season.  If you show them that you are serious and you have goals set forth they will be more likely to support you through this journey.  Along with this everyone who is around you will not be able to say well this isn’t what I signed on for.  Be up front and open with everyone.

I can remember when I signed up for my first 70.3 and the people around me did not know what exactly that meant in regards to training time.  If I was open about the goals and what my week looked like it made things easier.  Telling someone up front that you need to go ride you bike for 3 hours on a Saturday is much easier to take rather than the morning of just dropping it on them.

 

Include spouse, kids, friends when possible.

This is something that can be more difficult but if you can pull it off correctly, you will win and that’s a promise.  Including people in your workout can be challenging because you have a very specific plan when it comes time to train. However if you can include things like group rides this will make everyone feel involved.  One thing that worked well with my training was to do the indoor or more structured workouts on the trainer while watching tv with my girlfriend. We were spending time together (granted she was relaxing and I was working) but we were still together rather than me disappearing for that time.

 

If you have children, you can include them in the workouts as well! Now I am by no means telling you to take the little juniors out on your Sunday 20 miler.  Use some common sense here but if you have a zone 2 run, your kids could ride their bikes along side of you.  Two people who are super awesome about this are Ironmom Kim and her husband Taylor.  It’s no secret that kids need to get outside more.  Here is your golden chance to get them moving and have fun with them in the process!

 

Have a plan!

Lastly it is super important to have a plan.  If you have a coach, which obviously is the ideal situation, however I understand not a reality for everyone, then take the plan that they give you and share it with everyone who needs to know it.  You can work with your coach on constructing the week if you have things to work around.  We all have lives, coaches understand that and most of us are athletes too.  We get it, but you have to be open with us just like you need to be open with your family and friends. After you have your plan, put it n the calendar, put it on the fridge, put it somewhere that everyone can see it.  Have you kids cross the workouts off or days once they are completed, keep everyone involved and it will make the process more enjoyable for everyone.

 

I understand that this s all easier said than done here, but it is my goal with this post to shed some light on things that you may not have thought of.  I also understand that the balance of this looks something more like a cat on a tight rope over a pool, rather than one of those plate spinners or the guy juggling the chain saws.  However if you are open and keep everyone involved, with time, things WILL get better.  This is not going to happen overnight people.

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The last thing I want to tell you is that no matter what there are a few things that are going to happen.  Number one, you WILL miss a workout.  It is not the end of the world. Don’t try to make it up.  Pick up the next day where you’re supposed to and keep right on moving.  Number two if you have kids, you workout will get interrupted, kids fight or bicker, someone drops something, shit happens.  Get off your bike, handle the issue and get back on.  Guess what, what are you going to do if you get a flat on the bike or you shoe is untied on the run?  You gonna just call it quits right ther?  Nope you’re going to fix the situation and then keep going.  So do just that in training.  Lastly there are going to be times you have to get up early or stay up late.  It’s just part of the game.  How bad do you want it?  You wanna get better?  You wanna hit that goal or crush that PR? The days when you don’t feel like doing it are the days you need to do it most!

 

If you found something of value here, please share with a friend or family member.  It is much appreciated.

 

All for now.

Keep FSU and Do It For Yourself

Challenge Pocono Olympic Distance

After only six short days I was back on the road for another race.  Typically I like my R&R so I wouldn’t set myself up like this but I knew I was doing a sprint the week before and a buddy gave me a code for 50% off this race so I went for it.
Going into this race I looked at the course map and thought eh it doesn’t look like there is too much elevation gain….boy was I wrong.
Let me start by saying this race used to be Rev3 and I did not do it then so I am not sure how it was handled by them.  In 2015 it was taken over by Challenge and so that is what my report/review will be of.  On to it…..
We got up there mid to late morning on Saturday and followed the GPS directions to the INN where transition was.  After packet pickup I started to look around for transition and couldn’t seem to locate it.  This is when I realized that transition and the finish where not in the same general area.  No big deal we asked for directions and jumped in the car.  As I headed to find transition there were no signs, indicators or people telling you where to go.  I just found myself wandering around.  As I turned around for the 3-4 time I passed a park entrance and figured this is where it must be so I turned in.  Half of the entrance was blocked so I needed to wait for cars to pull out so I could go in.  In the meantime a park ranger came by and told me I needed to turn around. I figured there must be another entrance.  There wasn’t.  Clearly he didn’t know I was there to drop off my bike.  I turned in when he left and found transition ok.

Fast forward to race morning and I set up transition and was ready to roll.  We jumped in for the swim and the water felt great.  This was my first time swimming in open water where you could actually see!  Very nice course, until we hit a huge patch of river life and I freaked out.  The seaweed was so high you couldn’t really swim but there were rocks and sketchy bottom so you couldn’t stand up either.  I wish the RD or someone would have at least given us a heads up but I made the best of it.   Off on to the bike.  Now this bike course was like nothing I have done before.  You leave transition and you are almost immediately hit with a huge hill.  This hill was so steep I actually witnessed people fall because they could not go fast enough to keep their bike upright.  From there we went down an on to a road that was closed to traffic.  This road wasn’t closed because of the race though, the road was in such bad shape that cars were no longer permitted to use it, yet we were riding our bikes on it? I was not ok with this.  After that the course opened up and it was very nice. I was not too pleased with the decision to include this road but understand it may have been out of their control, either way I felt like I was placed in a rather unsafe situation. 
Off the bike and on to the run.  I made sure to take in some more nutrition on the bike because of my last olmypic mistake.  (You can read about that here).  On to the run and I took the first mile a little conservative.  Through the first 3-4 I was good.  It was mostly a trail/XC style run course, which was tough.  For whatever reason I lost it through the last few miles and I am hoping to correct this next season.  The run course was tough I will give it that but I still should have had a better performance. 
Coming down the finish I was just excited to be done for the day.  It was very hot out there and a tough course so it felt good to have it come to an end.  As I said before I was not stoked on my showing for this day and it was just a learning experience. 
One thing that was super rad about this race was that I met someone from Instagram who I have been following for some time now.  Shari Ann Nelson is such an awesome individual and I was happy to connect with her in the NormaTech tent.  She is so nice and friendly and I am glad we got a chance to chat.  Thanks for your advice and help! Check her out on facebook and Instagram!

I only have one race left for the season and I am starting to feel all of this training and racing.  Hopefully I can pull it together to go out and do it just one last time.
All for now, until next time

Keep FSU and Do It For Yourself


I don’t post on here daily but feel free to find me else where!

Tri the Wildwoods Triathlon and 5k

Well here it is.  The last race of the season.  I would like to apologize to everyone that it has taken me so long to post all of this.  I got caught up in the madness of training, racing and just life in general and my blog suffered.  I am back though and I have some exciting things for all of you coming up.

On to the race… This race was a little different for me because it is a Saturday race.  I don’t like to be rushed or stressed on race morning so I took a half day and headed to the beach for packet pickup.  Let me start by saying by the time this race came around I was done.  My head wasn’t in the race and I was so worn down from the season that I just wasn’t in it. 
After check in, some pizza and stickers etc I hit the hay.  I knew what I needed to do the next day.  When we got to transition it was a bit crazy.  There were A LOT of first timers at this race.  Not that there is anything wrong with doing a race for the first time.  I love seeing first timers come out, but I don’t like first timers who don’t do their homework.  There were a lot of those.  I weaved my way through the crowd and in to transition.  It was nice being able to pick your spot in transition.  I found a spot with a good landmark so I could remember where it was.  Super important! From there it was business as usual.
I pulled on my wetsuit and headed to the beach.  This was an ocean swim and I was a little nervous about that.  Of course the race director Steve put everyone’s mind at easy and gave us a few pointers before jumping in the water based on what the tide was doing.  I ran down the beach and in to the water I went.  Everything was going well until it was time to start heading back in.  I felt like I wasn’t going anywhere and just when I least expected it a huge wave came up behind me and freaked me out.  I made it in and got to my bike.
The bike course was a nice out and back.  Not too flat but not too challenging.  There was one gnarly climb going up and over a bridge but you got to come back down.  I found my groove and just peddled away.  Just before T2 I got to see my parents and Jamee, which is always a positive.  No matter the distance that little extra boost you get from seeing your cheer squad can carry you through the pain cave and I knew I was just entering.
On to the run, this run is no joke.  The first half is in the sand and not the nice hard sand down by the water.  They purposely put you up in the soft stuff so I took a moderate approach.  It was however TOO moderate.  I got back to the boards and my legs felt fresh.  I finished strong but I knew I still had some left in the tank and I was mad about that.  I knew I could have pushed myself harder in that soft sand.  I could have pushed myself harder the whole day but again my head just wasn’t there.  Must have been in the post race beer tent.
It has been a long season and now it is time to unwind.  Not before I thank EVERYONE who got me through this season.  I can’t name everyone but I will name a few.  First of all Jamee, this was a long season with lots of long training hours for both of us and I couldn’t have done it without her.  Jim and Brandon who helped me all through the way.  Jim keeping me healthy and coming to AC at the crack of dawn to cheer.  Brandon for getting me through my first 70.3 and all those early morning swims at the club.  My parents for traveling in the wee hours of the morning to almost every race.  My sponsors and everyone who enables me to do these things every single day in the beast gear.  Last but not least my followers.  All of you guys who read, comment, message and support me along the way.  Thank you so much.
As I said I have some exciting things for my readers coming up to keep an eye here and on social media!
Until next time, All for now

Keep FSU and Do It For Yourself.


I don’t post on here daily but feel free to find me else where!

Jersey State Championship recap

Onward and upward.  There is no rest for the wicked.  For me I only have a few weeks and it was back to racing again.  This time it was Jersey State olympic distance.  This was a race that I did last year and I did very well here so I was pumped to go back. This is a very competitive race and I was really ready to go out there and drop the hammer coming off of my fitness from 70.3 training.

This was an olympic race, I had been here before and I was super excited.  I had a few race nerves but I was ready to go.  I knew which restaurant I was having dinner at, we got to the hotel. Everything went well.  En route to the race we passed a tree down in the road and I didn’t think anything of it.  Little did I know this was right in the middle of the bike course so this meant a shortened bike course(foreshadowing for a later decision fyi).

I got suited up and headed over toward the swim start.  I watched my buddy go off with the elites and I just couldn’t believe how some of those dudes were flying through the water.  Next thing I knew it was my turn to go.  So waddled down like a penguin in a flock getting ready to jump in.  I jumped in and did a few strokes up to the line.  The water was great and it was go time.  I could hear my Dad whistling for me from the start, I had no idea they were coming so that was a pretty rad feeling. The gun went off and there we went.  Swim felt great.  I didn’t crush my time from last year but it was right around the same but this year was without a wetsuit which made me feel pretty good.  I still have a lot of work to do on my swim though.

From there it was off on the bike. I knew that the course was shortened by three miles and I decided to hammer my bike and just hold on for the 10k.  Well hammer I did. I think at the end of the day I held somewhere around 24-25 mph for the bike leg of this race.  I hammered it alright and I wasn’t even ready for the pain of this run.

The pain came and it came quick.  The heat was almost unbearable, I am not using that as an excuse because everyone had to battle the heat, however I did not fair well.  It became clear that I was not going to PR this run very early on so I went into survival mode.  I poured ice anywhere and everywhere I could, I drank water and I covered myself in towels.  Thankfully Stefan found me from earlier.  He pushed me along for a few miles and was very helpful.

Stefan however faired much better than I on the bike and so he lost me soon after.  I crossed the line and felt defeated.  Not in a good way though but in the man, I just messed that one up and I shouldn’t have done that kind of way.  But hey you live and you learn, I realized that my the nutrition attack I had for this day didn’t work, I realized I couldn’t push the bike that hard in the heat and most important I realized I had an amazing support system in people I might only see at races.
Thank you John and Stefan for helping me through this run, Thanks Mom, Dad and Jamee for coming out to support again and thank you to my sponsors and supports for enabling me to do something I love!
Next up is Atlantic City International Tri and I’ll give you a sneak peak, its a good one!
Until next time my friends,
Keep FSU and Do It For Yourself.

I don’t post on here daily but feel free to find me else where!

Escape The Cape 2015

Hello all you beautiful people! I am currently sitting in the airport on a 4hr delay thanks to Spirit (never again) but thats another story for another time.

In just two short days I will be toeing the line of my first 70.3!! Challenge Atlantic City half is on sunday and I am a ball of nerves/excitement.

The race season does not begin there however, it began two weekends ago at the Escape The Cape triathlon down in Cape May NJ.  Many of you may have heard of this iconic race where the start is from the back of a ferry boat! Its pretty sweet, a little scary and a ton of fun all at the same time!

I was wondering how this race would go because I have been training a lot different that before.  For one I had a plan, normally I would just swim bike and run three days a week and rest one but it wasn’t really structured.  The other thing was that I was training for a half and that was WAY different than training for short course racing.

The morning started a little rough with a down pour.  I was in transition and I remember saying to myself this sucks and I started letting it get to me and I stopped. I knew I couldn’t let myself get that negative on race morning so I just embraced it.  Unfortunately we had about a 30min delay getting out of the terminal.  When it comes to the swim I made two key mistakes again this year.  Mistake number 1 bring more food.  I had breakfast at 4:15 and then one cliff bar 4 hours later.  For me that isn’t enough. Number two get off the boat early. Once the international athletes start jumping I need to be down low on the dock and ready to go (more on that later). Either way, amazingly fun way to start a race and you honestly cannot beat it!

Now for the bike…..eh is my feeling on my performance here and it is mostly due to rain and crowds. Because I was in the back of the pack on the boat, most people were out on the bike course along with the international athletes.  On top of this the course was wet. I am not a risk taker on the bike, its just not my style. I race, I push but I will always reach for my break going into a turn and there were people who didn’t want to do that.  I remember this guy specifically who would pass me on the outside at every turn and then I would get him on the flat.  Coming into one of the final turns he took it way too high, lost control, crossed into the on coming cyclists and then into the guardrail he went.  Just not cool and that made me hold back on the bike a bit more than I wanted to.

On to the run and I’ll be honest with all of you about this run course because I love you….It SUCKS!  There are two sand runs for the sprint course and I am not talking nice flat hard sand runs, NO! soft sand, high dune, full suck runs.  I was holding a good pace on the flats but those sand runs just punished me.  I could remember looking down at my watch and just thinking man this isn’t gonna cut it today.  The owner of my company has a house right along the run course though and it was super rad to hear him yelling out there.  I could remember hit the turn and heading back and thinking I couldn’t let him see the struggle! Pull it together!!  I got back on to the road and I knew I had 800 meters to go and I just dropped it and went for it.  I almost collapsed after crossing the line and that’s how it should be.

Once I handed in my chip and got some water and settled it was time to hit the results tent…..Well it was time for someone else to hit the results tent.  For whatever reason I like the element of surprise so I have someone check it for me and let me know if I need to stay for awards or not.  I knew I had to stay but I had no idea where I stacked up against my field.

They went through the international awards first and then went from oldest to youngest.  I was on the edge of my seat the entire time.  I knew in the back of my head I was going to get my time on the stage but I just wanted to know if I was going to get to step on that RedBull podium for top 3! Finally my AG came up and I made my way towards the stage. They started with 5th, not me, then 4th not me and I knew right there I would get to stand on the podium. I took 3rd overall and I was happy.  I wanted to have times closer to 1st and 2nd but I had to tell myself that training for long course is way different than training for the short course. I was satisfied with my times but for my later season short course stuff I really need some speed work and hard runs off the bike if I want that top spot!

For now it is on to Challenge Half in a few days and like I said at the start I am just a ball full of all kinds of emotions.  There are a lot of unknown factors that come with a new distance but I am sure that I followed my plan and it will just be another day at the office on Sunday.  If you are interested in tracking me you can find me on the other social media forms!

Keep FSU and Do It For Yourself!

Escape the Cape Race Recap

Good evening all! I apologize on the delay of this post but settle in because it is going to be another long one.  As follows is my recap of the Escape the Cape International distance triathlon.  I will try to cut out most of the mumbo jumbo and just get straight to the facts.

Friday came around and I didn’t leave my house until around 8:30-9pm.  In my head I knew that I would much rather arrive at the beach on friday night at some point rather than shake out, get in the car and drive down on Saturday morning.  All Delmo Sports events have mandatory bike check in the day before the race and a very good family friend has a place down the shore so this makes my life very easy.  I got down there friday night and had enough time to make my bed and pass out.

Saturday morning I awoke and took my time, had some coffee and breakfast and then went to do my shake out stuff around town.  I went in a backwards order and did run, bike, swim, but actually skipped the swim part.  After the shake out I was feeling good and decided to just go with the flow for the day.  I knew if I left Sea Isle and went to the early meeting that I would just roam around and think about the race which would only increase the nerves.  I instead decided to sit on the beach for a few hours and chill before getting in the car.

After sitting on the beach for a few hours I knew it was time to go do check in and so I jumped in the car and headed for Cape May.  After parking and entering I went upstairs to collect my packet and various other things for the race, got marked and then I was off to get my bike.  I put my tags on my bike and walked it into transition.  Once I found a spot close to the end, I racked and it was time to hit the meeting.  There were A LOT of speakers at the meeting, some of which were just babbling and others who were giving great info.  One speaker in particular that I remember clear as day was the Doc who was going to be on the boat with us the next day.  He went through some breathing exercises with us if need be and then he began talking about the race.  I specifically remember him saying “everyone here has selected this race for a different reason.  The challenges that you all will embark on tomorrow mean something different but you picked this race for a specific reason and a specific goal.  You will all go out there tomorrow and jump off that boat and embark on a journey that you will never forget.  ENJOY IT!” I literally felt like he was talking specifically to me and no one else was there.  He was right, I picked this race for the challenge and to prove to myself that I could in fact do it.  After the meeting I stopped by to grab a pic of transition and then it was off to get some rest.

I arrived at the house, grabbed a shower and threw on some pasta.  I was in a complete calm at this point after everything the doc said and I got a good night sleep.
The next morning it was up at 5 and off to transition.  We arrived and I started laying out my stuff.  I put everything in place on my towel, got some air in my tires and just started the waiting game.  The worst part….. my batteries in my beats were dead so I had to listen to all of the people around me.  As the guy came over the loud speaker to announce we needed to start boarding, I grabbed my suit and headed for the line.  
One of the challenges of this race is that all athletes board the boat at the same time and take the same ride.  So all 1,500 of us were on the boat and heading out.  We got to the start of the sprint distance race and the first few people went off.  However what they did not account for was the current pushing the tide back out.  Some of the first people off the boat ended up in the jetty and it was a mess.  It all took about an hour and a half for the 800 or so sprint athletes to get off the boat.  By this time it was already 9:15.  I had been on the boat for an hour an 15 mins.  Thankfully I planned for this and brought nutrition on the boat with me.  If this is a race you plan on doing, and I highly recommend it, may I make two suggestions.  One, bring nutrition on the boat with you, even if it is just a gel or something.  You need something in your stomach for that swim, especially if you are doing the olympic distance.  Two is, don’t pull your suit on until you are just about to jump, you will bake like a potato in it if you pull it on too early!!
It was 9:30 and finally my turn to jump, I stepped across the matt, hit start on the garmin and I was off! I never thought twice about the jump, but I had a lot of adrenaline flowing and I was ready to go.  My goggles popped up in the back and I had to take a min and adjust them when I landed, so when they say hold them tight, they mean TIGHT!  For us it was easy, or at least for me because I was using the ferry terminal as my sight.  I just knew to look for the big blue roof and keep swimming.  Before I knew it, I was out of the water and on to the beach.  Up the beach and in to T1 it was.  I made sure to grab two cups of water and throw them on my feet so I wasn’t putting sandy feet into my bike shoes.  My one complaint about this part of the race is that the sprint athletes were done at this point and hanging around transition basically getting in the way and so you needed to be very careful!  One of the things I know that I need to work on is getting my suit off faster.  I could have cut a significant amount of time off my total had I not taken so much time in T1.  I grabbed my bike and it was off on the corse.  Just as I was exciting I heard my name!  My cheering section was there and had a great presence coming out on to the bike and I was so stoked.  
From here I knew I had a solid ride ahead of me.  It is a two loop 10 mile course on the bike through the town of Cape May.  As I went up and over the bridge we were approaching a sharp turn and the race guy standing there said take it slow and wide and so I began to do just that.  I heard this idiot behind me start screaming, what are you doing and cursing me.  I wanted to say listen lady, I am following the mans directions here, that is all.  But i didn’t I just stayed in my zone.  15 minutes had passed on the bike and I knew I was safe to take in some more nutrition.  I sucked down a gel and it was GO time.  The bike course is mostly closed except for one road and it is relatively flat.  There were a few tough spots with rocky terrain but all in all it was a nice course.  I came blasting in to T2 to a nice welcoming party and they really got me in the zone for the run.
off the bike and ready to run!
T2 was significantly faster than T1 and just as I was leaving I thought you know what, I am going to bring a water bottle on the run, thank god I did.  The first part of the run was on the soft sand shore.  I knew it was a beach run, but I was not prepared for what was to come.  I attacked the run and made it to the road.  From there it was one foot in front of the other and just trying to hang on.  As I was coming down the road someone came up on me pretty fast.  I said ok, I am going to hang with this guy for as long as I can.  Just as I said that I looked down and saw a dark 22 on his calf.  NOPE not hanging with him, I am off!  I knew that he could be the difference between me and a podium spot, which is obviously the goal when racing.  I took off and never looked back.  As I hit the second aid station I thought the turn was coming soon but I forgot about the second part of the beach run.  YES you are that correct a second beach leg.  If you thought the first one sucked, the second was nothing but a strugglefest.  The turn was on the beach and I hit it and tried to accelerate a little.  I knew that it wasn’t far to get back to the road and that’s all I kept telling myself.  I got back to the road and knew I only had about 1.5 miles to go.  I sucked down one more gel and just gave it everything I had left in the tank.  I kept telling myself embrace the suck and just get it done!!  At one point running down the road I remember saying to myself, “as much as I am hurting right now, I absolutely love this and wouldn’t trade it for the world.
As I approached the path to enter the finish chute I had that rush of emotion that I get coming down every finish chute.  It’s a rush of emotion that I can not explain to you unless you have done something you have never thought you could do.  I positioned myself on the left so I could see my squad one last time and just as I did that I could hear them going insane.  I heard my name over the loud speaker and I about collapsed as I crossed the line….I had done it, yet again I had done it, something I thought was never possible just a year ago.  

Post race I am never hungry, I sucked down some recovery drinks and ate a little something but I wasn’t hungry….I had one thing on my mind, results.  It seemed like it took forever for them to be posted.  I sent my buddy Dave over to check and see if I needed to stay or go while I went back into transition.  When I met back up with him his response was this “I got some bad news buddy……WE GOTTA STAY, YOU TOOK THIRD PLACE!!!!!
I couldn’t believe it, everything, all the hard work, the training hours, everything paid off in that one moment and they were all there to share it with me.  I can’t even begin to say how grateful I am to have shared this whole day with them.  
First, Second, and Third for AG
 Same as above but with 4th and 5th.

Dave and Katey I can’t thank you enough!

Jamee was absolutely awesome and I am so glad she made it!

Notice that huge plate of food, still full, never hungry after a race
This is my favorite picture of the day.  It captures all the emotions I was feeling as I stood up there on that podium in front of everyone.
All in all the race was fantastic, but for me it was a one and done.  There are just too many races going on around this time for me to repeat.  I also did not like hanging on the boat for that long.  I am not trying to shy anyone away from this race, it was fantastic, just ensure you are prepared from A-Z, don’t just breeze over the packet and course map!
I can’t thank everyone enough for everything that you have done.  The support was absolutely amazing and I couldn’t believe it to be honest.  Thank you to Dave, Jamee and Katey, for coming down and screaming your lungs out for the entire race.  Thank you to everyone for your messages and texts both before and after.  Just thank you….Thank you to everyone.  Up next for sure is Jersey State on July 21st!
Until Next time
All for now.
Keep FSU and Do It For Yourself!

I do not post on here on a daily basis but you can follow my training and other posts here!