Friday, April 18, 2008

IM Florida Plan 2008

Just starting to finalise our 2008 IM plans. How to get there, number of days there etc.

Last year we drove from Chicago to Panama City Beach (2000 miles there and back), however with the twins being here when we head down to PCB we have decided that a 2 day cross country drive may be too much, so instead we are going to fly down there.

Also Gemmas parents are likely to be in Venice Beach during that period, so the plan is..
  • Fly down to Sarasota/Bradenton from Chicago on the 24th, and then head down to Venice to meet Gemmas parents. Spend a few days by the beach getting the bike setup and getting a few beach swims and runs to acclimatise.
  • Then I will drive up to PCB on the Wed 29th Oct, Gemma is probably going to stay with her parents this year due to the complications of moving the twins around. She is not happy as she has been to every one of my events.
  • Then spending 29th Oct through to the 2nd or 3rd Nov in PCB before heading back to Venice, and then flying back to Chicago on the 7th Nov.
Would love to meet any bloggers who are going to be around, maybe a meetup on the Wednesday/Thursday night? Sherpa help, friendly faces on the course would greatly appreciated.

This leads to the second reason of my post.. bike boxes. One of the reasons we drove last year was the concern of my bike getting damaged, going all that way and my race being ruined due to a damaged bike.
So if we are flying I guess I need to consider a bike box. I have looked online and found a nice one for under $300 Trico Sports Iron Case. What cases have other people used, is there one people can recommend?

Looked at renting and because I don't belong to a Tri Club its likely to cost around $100.

Looking at the airline they will charge me $50 to fly the bike, so not too bad. I think I will get future use out of having a bike box.

And yes I know travelling with twin babies on a plane will not be easy either!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Guess Where I Went This Weekend

Went to Wisconsin this weekend and went to Wisconsin's No 1 Single Attrraction "House on the Rock" very wierd place. On its own not enough to make a blog post, but on the way back I got to stop at Ironman mecca...

Yep I went through Madison. Thought I'd throw these pictures out for those of you getting ready for Wisconsin this year.
As you can see the water was fairly choppy, and the weather was not very nice. I am sure it will be much nicer for the actually event. Also got to see Mt Horeb, glad I didn't have to go up that in Florida.

This is now my third IM city I have been too, (Louiville, Panama City Beach and now Madison). I didn't really get to see Louiville much, but Madison was certainly a much nicer location than PCB.
Wore my IM jacket, and it made my day when I was asked about IM. Had a great conversation with the team at the Erehwon Outlet Store, one of whom has volunteered at IM Wisc for the past few years.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

My Shamrock shuffle route

Last weekend I got to use my 305 for my first race of the year. I understood that in the city it would have 'issues' with satellite locks, here are some shots of my route...
Honest I didn't take shortcuts!
Firstly, I mixed it up by adding a water leg to the race..
Next was the 'I got lost moment'

When I got out from downtown it worked fine. The overall route was...

Note the straight line I ran down W Jackson Blvd (another swim leg added). According to the Garmin the course was long, but when I look at the route I went it might explain why the Garmin had me at 5.5 miles for an 8k race.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Shamrock Shuffle 8k

First race of the year, first race in my Newtons, first race where I really enjoyed it, longest run since IM Florida!

Thats the summary of my race. As mentioned in a previous post, this race last year was a PR for me, however this year I had decided it would be a race to enjoy and to run with a training partner.

Finished with a time of 43.52. Nothing amazing but finished feeling great. (8.45min miles)
All the way round I could have certainly kicked it up a notch (and possibly even beaten my last years PR of sub 40 mins), but wanted to be able to run with friends and enjoy the race. (Notice the IM Florida finisher cap, saw another finishers cap on the course and passed on my congratulations.)
Weather was cold (35degF), hence the stockings and running coat.

The outcome from the race has given me confidence that my fitness has not dropped off as much as I thought since IM FL, also I am starting to believe that the Newtons can make a difference. So from the last post of saying I am 50/50 on the Newtons, I am more 70/30 in favour. However I do not think they are treadmill shoes, I have found them far more effective when running outside.

My 305 gave an interesting course map (think the high buildings in the city may have had an effect!) I'll save those for another post.

It was cold, at the start but once I got going it was a really nice temperature, the race was nicely organised and unlike the Marathon plenty of water on the course!