Monday, February 25, 2008

It's about time for an update!

Doing my best to be a....

(Yeah, I know it would look better centered with the valve stem, but that would have been a mess and a lot of work for vanity.)

It's about time for an update, and there are a ton of things I could write about, but I'll keep this post simple...

1. I'm healing from my calf injury, 100% now and excited! Sunday was a run on my local 10K route and ran the fastest time of the year, all in zone 1, so a great sign despite only running 15 miles last week. Should be good to go this week.

2. This week is HUGE! Last check, it was just a shade under 31 hours.

3. I leave for Saipan one week from today. Will have more on this trip soon, and plan to take plenty of pictures and even video! Be sure to check back here for more updates on it.

4. Last, but certainly not least....MY BRAND NEW LOOK 986!!! Saipan, here it comes!

The machine.

The drivetrain.

The experiment...testing the Polar power meter off-road. I'll keep you posted on my tri tech review blog.

SRAM XO shifter, with Avid Juicy carbon lever hydraulic brakes, and remote lockout on the Reba front fork.

Special thanks to JT for the wheels, (including the High Roller tire), since they weren't ready yet, and he was gracious enough to lend me his Cross Max SLR wheelset!


Friday, February 22, 2008


Saturday, February 16, 2008

Hello Saipan!

It's official, I am entered and the plane ticket is booked for the Saipan Sportsfest, which includes both the XTERRA Saipan and Tagaman Triathlon events! I am excited to have this trip as my first real competitions of the season, and know they will provide me with excellent challenges and competition to prepare me for Ironman Arizona.

I was approached by the race organizers, as they were looking for an athlete who was solid in both off-road and road triathlons, and given the length of the road triathlon, could provide a competitive performance. They made me a great offer to attend, and I needed a good race event or two to sharpen for Arizona, and the timing was perfect!

Andy Noble is the defending champ for the Tagaman, and the famous double for XTERRA and Tagaman, after taking the crown from Olivier Marceau, (Olivier won XTERRA Saipan last year). I will have to bring a good level of fitness with me if I want to challenge Andy. At over 40 years of age, he doesn't seem to be slowing down, or letting his age affect him in the least.

I am also excited about the travel opportunity, as I have never been to anywhere in Asia, and I get the opportunity to stay overnight in Tokyo on the way back. Should be a lot of fun to see these places I've never been. It's cool that the trip will last about 11 days, and give me the chance to soak in the venue and see what Saipan is all about.

For those of you wondering where Saipan is, (I had to look on a map myself), this should help:

So that is the big news from my end. I am in Phoenix, for the TrainingBible Coaches Meeting, but tomorrow morning I'm doing a big workout on the Ironman course. Unfortunately, I've begun to have a left calf problem, and hope I am over it enough to do the workout tomorrow. I have not been able to workout at all the past 2 days, but that has been due to both the injury, and the meeting.

Worst case scenario, I should be fine for the swim and ride, but need to cut the run. I will see how it goes.


Thursday, February 14, 2008

Thanksgiving in February!

While riding up Torrey Pines hill yesterday, the workout was getting better and better. I had done a hard 15 miler in the morning, and now was banging out hill repeats at threshold wattage. I could feel how my force was transferring so well thru my Look 496, seeing it on the power meter, and catching some amazing glances of the Pacific Ocean. Suddenly, I felt very blessed, and thankful for so much in my life.

I'm thankful for my decision to move to San Diego. It has brought me opportunities and introduced me to people who have had profound affects on my life. (And the great weather keeps me upbeat, positive and training well!)

I was/am thankful for my fitness! I continue to improve, and though I have had 2 hiccups with some running, things otherwise have gone nearly flawless.

I am so thankful for Look, and their support of me. The 496 is an absolutely amazing, and BEAUTIFUL bike. I can't wait for the 986!

I am thankful for the fact I can train, and race triathlons. I know there are many people who would love to be in my position, with the opportunities I have.

I am thankful for my sponsors, like B+L and Zoot, who have supported me from the beginning of my triathlon endeavors. I have grown up with both these companies, and they have grown with me. It's an intimate connection with them, which means a lot to me.

I am thankful for my clients, who allow me to continue my love for teaching, and participate in their hard-work journey and successes.

I am thankful for my coach, Joe Friel, who continues to teach me a lot, holds me accountable, and provides objective perspectives for me.

I am thankful for the past coaches who I've been blessed to learn from as well, Peter Reid and Greg Welch.

I am thankful for my wonderful wife, here on Valentine's Day. She continues to amaze me, with how much she gets me to love her more and more everyday. I thought she was wonderful when I first met her, and first married her, but it's amazing seeing her growth as a person continue in so many great ways.

There are probably many other things I am thankful for, but won't bother listing them all here now. I think I've covered the main ones which were in my head on the ride.

I leave for Phoenix tomorrow morning, for the first annual Training Bible Coaching Coaches Meeting. The meeting is on Saturday, then on Sunday is my biggest training day of the year so far. Check it out on the training log.

If I get the chance, I will make announcement on this blog this weekend. It's pretty cool, and a great start to the season!

Hope everyone's training is going great as well, and you find the things you're thankful for this season.


Monday, February 11, 2008


Tressa was my teammate at Nebraska, and she was one the most inspiring and positive athletes I had ever been around. She was always smiling, always working hard, and it seemed she was always successful. Everyone on the team loved her, and it was so inspiring to see someone we cared about so much, and who worked so hard, become one of the best shot putters in the world.

I was at Nebraska to witness her great rise. I had just left Nebraska a few months before her great fall. This is the story of my old teammate, Tressa...

Tressa, I hope you are well and realize your 2nd rise will inspire many more than you can comprehend.


(In case it's hard to view with my blog format, check out the videos by clicking here)

Friday, February 8, 2008

Motivational Sickie

If you read my Coach Vance blog, then you probably read my recent post on motivation. I discussed some motivational tools, and thought I would share a fun tool I have on my nightstand. Not too many people have a bobble-head of their swim coach on their night stand! This is my swim coach Ron "Sickie" Marcikic, who runs the UCSD masters program. When I wake up in the AM, and it's time to get to the pool, I roll over to turn off the alarm clock and see his BIG head staring right at me, with "GOTTA WANNA" underneath it. That's all the motivation I need not to push the snooze button, and get my butt out of bed!

This makes me want to get a bobble-head of myself for my athletes!


Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Conrad, B+L and Training

Yesterday morning weighed in at 170.3. Up a little, and not surprised, as the diet went a little astray over the weekend. It's clear when the diet strays, my body really notices. Workouts seem to just not be as fluid, etc. I also ate a ton for being in a big volume week, and maybe overdid it.

Finished up with a big week, 28 hours of training total, 16 of it on the bike. I am impressed with how healthy I am, as well as how my numbers seem to be pretty good.

On Friday night I went to the Conrad Stoltz talk with Bob Babbitt, at B+L San Diego here, and was able to do an interview on video with him myself. It was a cool interview, about 15 mins long, and will show up on the internet soon. I will keep you posted.

You can see some photos from it at B+L's blog:

I am currently at home waiting for the plumber to come over and fix our water heater. Thankfully I'm in a recovery period, with skill emphasis, so it should not affect my training too much. (Unless it takes too much time for them to fix it, DOH!)

This week will start a big intensity focus come Thursday, thru the weekend and all next week. I am in for a BIG TEST!

In negotiations with a race director to get me to an international race event, and hopefully it will work out. Stay tuned for some possibly cool news!