USAT Duathlon National Championship (Bend, Oregon) – A Race Report and Lessons Learned

The Finish Line at USAT Duathlon NationalsThis wasn’t my greatest race result by a long shot, but it was the result that I deserved.  As I mentioned in my last post, my body has been a house of cards this year.  Maybe a teetering stack of Jenga blocks is a better metaphor with each race being like pulling out another supportive block from the bottom.  Any way you look at it, I’m frail this year; one tiny mistake and everything comes toppling down.  That happened in Avilés when my back went out and boy did it cost me.  This time everything held up—consequently, Nationals were definitely easier and faster than Avilés even though it was at about 3,500 feet of altitude.  But I was also definitely racing well within my already compromised limits.

I’m going to write this race report a little differently because I don’t want to focus as much on the actual race as much as what I’ve learned from doing the race and what I’m doing about it.  Even though I’m not in ideal shape, I am excited and I have a plan.  Also towards the end, I’ll mention some of the longer term challenges that affected both this race and Avilés—as well as what I’ve learned from going through this darker period.  So let’s dig right in! Continue reading

Periodization to Varied Training

In my last race report, I hinted that I would be elaborating on some of my recent training ideas.  This isn’t exactly a new idea for me– it’s just particularly acute for me this time of year.  Add to that a suggestion from a friend, a recent post by Joe Friel, and my desire to simplify my training routine and voilà, I have the foundation for a new training regimen.  I can’t quite say that this is the best training philosophy ever, but it is the one that will be guiding my training for 2016.  Read on if you would like to shake things up a bit as well. Continue reading

An Idiot’s Guide to Using a Muscle Oxygen Sensor

For the last few weeks, I have been utterly geeking out on using my BSX Insight Generation 2 muscle oxygen sensor.  If you’ve been following the buzz about muscle oxygenation, you’ll notice people talking about how this device will revolutionize sports training because it delivers what heart rate monitoring never could– an objective view into our bodies to see how we are responding to exercise stress.  But it’s awfully complicated getting simple answers.  This post pulls together a bunch of hours of crawling different websites and watching countless videos on muscle oxygenation. Continue reading