New Year, New Goals

I'm going to sound old when I say this, but things have changed so much since I ran competitively from HS-Post Collegiate ('93-02). Periodization, Compression Tights, GPS Watches, Nutrition/Supplements--the list goes on. There have been so many tests, studies and progression towards endurance sports since then and I think we are seeing results in the US because of it. We are finally starting to get competitive in running and and triathlon. Not everything was extinct back then though. I remember during my junior and senior year when Heart Rate monitors where finally starting to get affordable, we started wearing them as a team (although I think we used it incorrectly). I remember just always running hard. Whether it be in the summer or during track season -there was never a time where I would just put in slow base mileage and periodize my season. It's so obvious now when I look back why I always peaked too early and was burned out for every national championship. I don't put that on my coaches--I think they actually tried to implement some type of system back then, but no one would ever listen. It was a race most practices and during summer you had to hammer so you'd be ready for training camp. Vicious cycle. Only the strong survived back then. I think athletes are finally starting to buy into periodization now and we are seeing the results.

Back then we were also the guinea pigs on the latest sport supplements which included this nasty toothpaste looking gu and a recovery drink called Sports Toddy (I can't believe they still sell it). They tasted horrible! I remember dry heaving several times trying to get that sports toddy down, but our coach swore by it -so I forced it down. Thank goodness they have good stuff out there now. I currently use and highly recommend Nuun, Carbopro and Cliff Shot bloks for workout nutrition and Hammer Nutrition Recoverite for recovery. The Recoverite is pricey -but so worth it. I really do feel a difference when I don't take it after a hard effort. Its so funny because when I look back on some of the training I did in college we would run these weekly hill/long run efforts -literally 18-24 miles all uphill (Mt. Baldy) with only a water or sometimes none at all! That is crazy, then when we got back we loaded up on donuts - no wonder I would feel absolutely horrible the rest of the day and sometimes rest of the week.

One thing we did have back then is goals. I'm a firm believer in them, whether its your job, training/racing or even your finances. This year my big goals are simple. Qualify for Xterra Nationals and Worlds. They are kind of lofty goals since this will be my first year doing triathlon, but I've had a solid 5 months of training and I know I'm in good shape. The first step will be at the Xterra West Championships on April 10th. However many points I get from there along with all of the other Xterra's I have lined up for the year (check out revamped race schedule) will dictate whether or not I get one of the six spots in my age group for nationals.

A few other goals:

Getting in here 3-4 days/week

Getting this Cyclocross bike

Riding in more places like this

Putting on more of these (less nipple chaffing! less bleeding!

Earning more of these

And most of all, spending a lot of time with my fam!
Thanks for reading everyone, although I haven't received any comments yet with the blog---I do get feedback from a lot of you. My tracker says over 800 have visited -so I imagine this isn't just a diary for myself. Hopefully this blog can be used as a little inspiration to you -I know it's keeping me accountable for my training.

Happy 2011, hope it's your best ever!


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