Riding with the wind. When I'm sad, she comes to me.
With the thousand smiles, she gives to me...

Fly on my little wing.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016


To be able to be racing in Kona for a third time is an incredible blessing. It is a rewarding experience that all the time and hard work in training has paid off. I know I would never be able to make it to the start line without the assistance from my friends and family. Among many things this sport requires an extensive amount of time and it also isn’t cheap. There are many people that pick up my slack when I’m lacking in one of those departments. Thank you.

Qualifying in Muskoka last August was a trial in itself and this last year of training has been one of the most frustrating and challenging periods of my athletic career. Like everything it is multi-factorial, but the main issue has been nagging injuries. I had an Achilles injury last winter, followed by a hip injury that has never really resolved itself. Training has had more ups and downs and lacked consistency than in years past. Given my long time goal of contending for a podium spot for my age group, to say the injuries have been frustrating would be an understatement.

On the positive side I’ve been able to swim consistently and have had some great improvements, including a significant PR swim time at the Boyne City triathlon. Cycling had periods where I felt stronger than ever and got in some great mileage rides. However this season lacked consistency. Running has been mostly the opposite story. While usually my strength, I head into Kona with few consistent weeks of greater than 20MPW. My long runs of 13, 16 and 10 all occurred in the month of September. This should make this upcoming marathon all the more interesting.

With all of this in mind many people have asked what my goal or expectations are for this performance. At this point I don’t really have a goal, besides to finish with the best time I feel my body can provide me on Saturday. I think if everything goes as well as it could I could perform a 58-60min swim, bike around 5-5:05 and if I ran under 3:30 I would be ecstatic. (For comparison in 2013 I swam 64, biked 4:54 (206W) and ran 3:16). I’ll try not to speculate on the opposite scenarios. Going in without a true “competitive” mindset may be a benefit in keeping a more even and conservative race. We’ll see if I can hold myself to that.

The biggest significance of this race is that I think it will be my last Ironman race. This isn’t for lack of loving the sport, nor enjoying what goes into it. I think the one reason would be categorized under opportunity cost, from both a time and financial perspective. The second categorized under an emotional strain category, both upon myself and upon others.

Everyone chooses how they spend their time and the past year I have found that the time commitments to “adulting” (category under which house maintenance/improvements, work, bills etc fall under), running B-Nuts and Hill Valley Farm and general “life” stuff, left less time for “living” activities. I know “over-busy” is the American way, but I don’t want it to be ours. The prioritizing of time management has changed and I feel triathlon needs to take a back seat.

The nature of endurance training and racing is that it requires a huge time commitment and is a very self-centered activity. As isn’t uncommon for an athlete that excels the sport, it becomes intertwined with the daily aspects of life. It is essentially required for an athlete that has big aspirations. I’m not in the sport to be mediocre and I don’t as much enjoy racing just to complete a race. I know that most of the time my mood is dictated by my current state of training/not training. My family, and in particular Brittany, live with the results of this and do an amazing job tolerating it. Brittany does the most incredible job supporting my efforts and putting up with my mood swings. She knows how I tick and happily goes along with my endeavors. But I don’t want it to reach a point of contention in our relationship.

Having said all of that I’m not saying I’m done with triathlon, only that I think I will step back for some to be determined period of time. I’ll still do some smaller races. So for my time here on the Big Island I am going to enjoy the experience and the opportunity. Thank you to all who have helped me get this far.

My bib number is 1997. This link will take you to the event page and find the “live tracking” link.

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