Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Dr. Anderson STAT

Couple of cool bios on featured athletes in the CompuTrainer Kona 2009 Video:

IM in Kona

Mitch Anderson

Bella Bayliss' Blog

Article on Karen Smyers

Paul Huddle

Article by Louis Alvarez

And a two end-of-the-season (over my cold corpse) rides, one of which I NEED to do.

Methow Bike Festival

Cascade Color Classic

I am wrapping the CompuTrainer Kona 2009 video. My eyes are blurry, ears ringing and I am pretty sure this one induced a low grade case of carpel tunnel syndrome. But we even managed to finish a few days ahead of schedule. I like it a lot and am ready for the wrap party. The DVD will debut, as is custom, in Kona on Wednesday where it will play ad naseam until Friday afternoon at the conclusion of the expo. Saturday is the big event, IM 31, and Sunday night is my fave, the awards banquet. Watching the video from the previous day as cut by the NBC team overnight (and right up to show time) is spine tingling drama. I have a great appreciation for what these guys do. I just did it and it took me SEVEN DAYS! We then fly out Monday.

Upon return the plan is to break up the DVD into five pieces for Utoob, starting Tuesday night, Oct. 13, and running all week, one episode per night. Won't that be fun? I'll be doing a daily blog posting from Kona all race week, but no video this year as I have been enlisted to work the booth, so shoot and edit time will be greatly reduced from years past. Speaking of which, this is the 10th year of my pilgrimages to the Big Island for this spectacle, so maybe Chuck, Simon and I will celebrate in some appropriately grand fashion. I might even have some wahoo.

The photo (sic) is from Dr. Mitch Anderson's web site. He is also one fast triathlete.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Gran Fondo

Literally, it means "long distance" and has been a cycling staple in Italy for decades. As the American appetite seems to be refining its taste for cycling in the traditional style (without a swim prior or a run after) events such as the Tours of California, Missouri and Virginia are gaining notoriety and continue to generate a lot of good cycling buzz. It should come as no surprise then, that the Gran Fondo is now on the horizon.

Those of you (all of you?) who follow the RCVman saga, are familiar with the events run and operated by Graham Fraser. Think, Ironman Canada first, and then, chronologically, Lake Placid, Coeur d'Alene, Arizona, Florida and Wisconsin. If you know Ironman, you know Graham. He and I hammered out the original agreement to film his events for RCVs. Here is how that negotiation went:

RCVman (then simply KML): "Here is my idea"......blah, blah and more blah, until I had the picture of the Real Course Video fully pixelated (in twenty minutes).

GF: "OK, sounds great, get with Shane and make it happen."

And we haven't stopped since.

Graham is a gentleman, a savvy businessman, a talented athlete and a visionary. He is also a nice guy, something rare with all the above attributes, although this could be because he is Canadian, but I'm not sure. As more back-story, Graham this year sold his interests in all the above mentioned IM's to the World Triathlon Corporation, with the exception of IMC. Did I mention savvy? As a result of the sale he suddenly found himself with time to burn, and decided to bring the Gran Fondo concept West via his start-up Centurian Cycling.

This is exciting news. On a number of levels. You know what they are.

It is also going to be fun. Fasten your chin strap and calibrate your CT. The Gran Fondo is coming West. Put these on your 2010 'must-ride' list kids:

Boulder, CO, July
Madison, WI, August
Mammoth Lakes, CA, September

Thanks Graham.

Sunday, September 27, 2009


Sunday afternoons have always brought out the melancholy in me. Even this one, officially a few days into Fall, a spectacular cobalt blue and sun splashed reminder of summers past. This was to be the last high volume training weekend before Kona and the subsequent taper into the indoor season. But I didn't want to burden another instructor for Saturday's class, yesterday I strained the MCL of my left knee (again) and the Kona video is already providing challenges and I am only three minutes in. OK, yeah, I like the open, but with 57 minutes to go and only six days to produce, it might as well snow.

So here I sit looking at clips from the last three seasons, watching what I should be doing. I am both inspired and dejected. Pleased that I am able to bottle a sample of this magical elixir, and totally bummed that I can't even walk to the kitchen without a whimper. How the knee responds to ice, compression, ibuprofen and Rawson's Retreat shiraz-caberet will determine my spinning instruction at 0530 on the marrow.

Until then, I will push the project and try to keep my frustrations out of the vPOV (video Point of View). I am wondering however, if my use of the CompuTrainer squealer, a Geico/Aflac-like attempt to put a cute animal face on a retail commodity, will trigger metaphoric connotations, as in, "My power output will increase 2mph in five months WHEN PIGS FLY." And yes, I layered it in the upper right corner of the Kona course (forgive me Madame Pele and Queen K) with a subtle clockwise spin in time with the narrative. So we'll see if I catch any shrapnel from THAT decision. Petey, the Performance Improvement Guarantee oinker is shown in jpg stillness above.

All for now, ice is melting.

Friday, September 25, 2009

36-20 Dawgs!

Just Add Video

Hard to believe that it is the second day of Fall 2009. As soon as this is posted I am going out for my afternoon 5K in the park where is is currently 75 warm and sunny degrees. And, no, in case you were wondering, that doesn't make me any faster.

RCVman is making solid and steady progress with the "Most highly anticipated video release of the Year." That would be the annual Kona Expo video that we debut on 10.6, a mere four days before the thirty-first running of Ironman World Championships. So we get to watch the video on endless loop for eight hours a day, four days straight. Some consider this to be borderline water-boarding, so I do as much as possible to keep the energy levels up and entertainment factors high. I am very pleased with the voice over work that Tim Phelan did on the narrative. Plus, the score is a 100% pure rocking eclectic and heterogeneous crossing of several alternative genres, (and one basic one). Want some for instances?

Down by the Sea. Wooden Shjips. Sisyphus in 1969.
Not Right Now. Stone Coyotes. Only Vocal, JL Hooker meets HL Mencken.
Release It. Afro-Celts. What your sprocket hears when you descend.
The Moon is Down. Explosions in the Sky. The color of carbonation.
Pound it Out. Booker T. (With the Drive by Truckers and Neil Young). OMG.
The National Anthem. RadioHead. Twilights last gleaming in the danger Zone.
Fishing. Widespread Panic. Hook, line and sinker.
Playing in the Band. Dead. Jerry shredding at 10,000 notes per minute.
Long Bay. Charlie Hunter Trio. Chipotle and champagne.
BMW. Chicago Artbeat. Just like it sounds, 'cept on a bike.

Hey, all I have to do is add the video!

Added to the pomp and happenstance of the video release are the other promo components of the Big Island week. We are giving away a free pair of RaceSox or a head band with the purchase of any Real Course Video. The posters that advertise this huge, special event are in the shape of an athletes body. I am having some "Heads on Sticks" make to attach to the top of the posters with the heads displaying the actual bands. Then, the "feet" holding everything up are wearing the socks. I hope this all looks as good "live" as it did when I drew it up, so wish us luck. As we advertise in three heavily trafficked areas, we have three poster locations, each featuring the head of the one of the crew. I hope Simon and Chuck will be pleased with my Phososhopping their mugs. Mine is shown as the example. Guess I should have shaved!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Kiss that Frog

Eighteen years ago I was working for the Department of Defense as a contractor. I had an illustrious title and impossible responsibility to manage the morale, welfare and recreational opportunities of the military men and women and contract personnel assigned to a remote and isolated coral atoll in the middle of the Indian Ocean. It was my thinking that the better the recreation, the more we could find fun and rewarding ways to play and exercise, the easier it would be to manage the nebulous and difficult to quantify areas of morale and welfare. I was taking a page from the Happiness is 99% Good Health playbook. And for a while it worked. Funny how a war can change things.

During that same period I was also piecing together some philosophical concepts that seemed to fit. Trying to make the means justify the ends. Trying to define quality. Trying to accept what was, and then suddenly what wasn't. And vice versa. They were interesting times on many fronts and on many levels.

One of the precepts that I came up with in sharing some of these ideas in a classroom setting, or to anyone who cared to listen, was what I called The Big Four, TBF because it was a Navy Support Facility and everything was accronyminated (look THAT one up).

I bring this up because today I got another promo e-mail from renowned cyclist Graeme Street and while the Kona 2009 Expo video is rendering, clips not the final render mind you, I listened to his daily podcast, linked here. And I liked it a lot as it reminded my of my TBF days and all the good memories that surrounded them.

Here, then is the Tale of Two Roadies. TBF by RCVman (well before he was RCVman) and Graeme Street. See if you can detect any similarities and/or constants.

The Big Four (RCVman):

1) Be only here 'cause it's right Now.
2) Think positive thoughts.
3) Be Happy.
4) Live, Love, Learn.

Pump it (Graeme Street):

1) Remove negatives.
2) Simplify, focus, organize.
3) Absorb the goodness around you.
4) Share the good.
5) Breathe.

A most interesting reflection. Thank you Graeme for the reminder.

As a special magical sharing note, Graeme's wife has a cool site that picks up on his item number 4. It is here.

Kiss that frog.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Tri to be Funny

A good nights sleep and a high-intensity, sub-threshold, progressive overload one hour interval spin session was all it took. Those and a bowl of rice cups with fresh strawberries, bananas and whey protein powder. OK, and six cups of high-octane dark French roast. And 75 degrees in Seattle on the first day of Autumn. Geeze, what else do I have to sing (off key) about this fine morning?

Glad you asked, because I have lots. As in:

Those big, bad and beautiful UW Huskies moved from the nether-reaches of the NCAA cellar to number 24 in three short weeks. I have watched all this VERY closely (starting in the fall of 1974) and am not surprised in the least at their rise. I am however, VERY surprised at how fast they accomplished it. There will be more.

Sometimes the final piece of the puzzle, is the first piece for the next puzzle.

Nothing is perfect, ever. Many things, however, can be of a perfect imperfection.

Did you hear Obama on Letterman last night? He said, "Dave, you know I was a black man before the election." This in response to the recent spite of overreactional hyperbole to Joe Wilson's bombast and Jimmy Carter's subsequent comments on racism. We remain a divided country in two camps. Those that can laugh at themselves and those that can only laugh at others.

I wish there was a Race-flix like Netflix, so that when I feel especially strong (now) I could go on-line and put a 70.3 in my shopping cart.

Watching Mad Men (Season One) is painful. Too close to home. The booze, the smokes, the mode-o-day. The condescending attitudes, the politics, the overall innuendo of a country riding the crest of false mirth. Madison Avenue Ad games. That was almost 50 years ago. We have come a long way (haven't we?)

Training is testing as testing is training. Andrew Coogan.

And lastly, here is a link to the winner of this months RCVman Blog of the Month award. Carrie Barrett wins a pair of CompuTrainer Racesox and a CT-RCV Head Band as a result of her great work both with the Blog, Tri to be Funny and on the CT (above photo). Nice work, Carrie!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Why is this?

Hey VBA. Interbike starts Wednesday (CompuTrainer is at booth 4000 sandwiched between the Concession Stand and Surley Bikes) then the Kona expo opens fourteen days from tomorrow. RCVman is up to his helmet-strap in video production, garment coordination, poster design, copy writing and talent selection. Not to mention sales and support. He even had to buy Special Agent Wards connecting flight ticket from SFO to Honolulu (riding the Wiki-Wiki will be revenge enough). Thank the Lord our spin classes are at 0530. All this means that I have precious little time to spend with you all - y'all - tonight. A thousand pardons. I will make it up with many more words (or a photo of equal worth) over the next few days as this inspired scheme comes together.

I will leave you with this juicy little bit of tid for interim consideration. And ask but one question of its content: WHY IS THIS?

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Teach your Students well

The aftermath of yesterdays huge Husky win over (then) third racked USC is taking on some interesting dimensions. Here are a couple and my take on them:

One of the hardest jobs in sports broadcasting is the post game interview. The emotional ebb and flow can reach the stratosphere or resemble a minus tide at Duwamish Slew. Sticking a live mic and ENG cam in a coach's face as he trots across a football field after an Earth-shattering win, is simply soliciting drama. You don't know what your are going to get, and the question (you usually only have time for one) has to be a good one. This explains why coaches default to the same old, same old responses. Middle of the road meets vanilla PC. Steve Sarkisian is different. You already knew that. How different? When asked by the obviously rattled ABC "field guy" after the win how he thought his team played, a question both inane and insipidly banal, Sark said, looking off camera into the celebrating moray of purple and gold, "I don't know how good they played, BUT THEY PLAYED HARD."

Yes, they did.

Bill Plaschke used to be the beat reporter for the Seattle PI covering the Seattle Mariners back in the days they played in the Kingdome. Back when Rene Latchman was wondering if Gaylord Perry could somehow still find the black at age 45. Plaschke left for the greener pastures and bigger salaries of LA in 1987. He has won numerous awards for his writing as a result of his acrid style and keen insights. He has an uncanny ability to irritate people without insulting them. He stays mostly on topic. His topic in this mornings LA Times was Pete Carroll, head coach at USC. More accurately how yesterday's loss to the 20 point underdawg Huskies was all Carroll's fault. Mostly because Pete said so. All Plaschke did was agree and then vehemently agree again. As in "How could a coach allow one of his former coaches to beat him at his own game?

Well, he did. And here is why:

He was supposed to. That's what good coaches do. They coach their assistants into coaches so that they create more coaches. Same way with teachers. Teachers take students and teach to create more teachers. The student is supposed to learn the lessons of the master so well that one day (sooner rather than later) the student becomes a teacher. The assistant coach becomes the head coach (somewhere else) and teaches the teacher as the coach coaches the coach. Do you think that Pete Carroll learned a few things yesterday? Plaschke gets it all wrong in the same way that the ABC field guy unwittingly got it right.

The wrong question asked to the right guy yields better copy than the wrong answer to the right question. Every time. You can quote me on that.

The student proved that yesterday. Pete Carroll correctly took a lot of the blame for the Trojan loss. All Plaschke, aka Homer the Hacker, did was publicly rub it in his face. Class meet class-less.

I think deep inside, as the entire USC squad licks their collective wounds and mens their battered egos, Pete Carroll is very proud of his student.

He should be.

Photos: Pete Carroll and Steve Sarkisian. Coach and coach. Teacher and student. Which is which and who is whom?

Friday, September 18, 2009

Not upset

As the VBA knows (and somewhat tolerates), RCVman sometimes ventures into the wild, wacky, weird and wonderful world of "things other than triathlon". Case in point is tomorrow's Pac 10 football game pitting the underdawg University of Washington Huskies (the good guys) versus the arrogant, spoiled by success, haughty, snobbish and altogether ridiculously talented and tanned private school thugs from USC (the bad guys). These two have dueled 79 times since 1923. Series stands in favor of SC at 49-26-4, with our last victory coming in 2001. Eight long and painful years ago.

I have been watching these two teams go after it since I was barely old enough to shave. The first time I ever watched a college football game live it was in the Colosseum, home of the Trojans. It was 1956. I was four. Paul Hornung was the QB for Notre Dame that rainy day in LA. Future Ram Jon Arnett was the QB for USC who eventually won the game 28-20. Hornung would go on the win the Heisman that year (still the only player on a team with a losing record to do so). I remember being miserable under a yellow umbrella trying to eat a foot-long soggy hot dog, hearing the roar of the crowd amid the smell of cigars. For the record, I have known many fine people who went to USC. But in LA there is no middle ground, you either LOVE the Trojans or you LOATHE them. And as Mom was the textbook coordinator at UCLA and I was being scouted and groomed to one day play shortstop for the Bruins, my LOATHE factor for the men from Troy was, well, off the charts. It only deepened once I escaped from LA and landed in Seattle. That was 1974 and I will never forget the crackling radio hiss of the Huskies playing SC from LA that year as I drove my pick up over Blewett Pass. I was a college fan reborn, with a new home team. And they played on a road called Montlake, wore purple and gold and were called the Huskies.

Naturally, then I would like to see them treat the visitors rudely. As in kick their asses. As in humiliate, annihilate and dominate. Expose them as frauds. They have been atop not only the PAC 10 standings, but national rankings as well for most of the last decade. And it is about time that ended.

I can think of no better time and place for this to happen than tomorrow afternoon at Husky Stadium.

It has been an often painful (0-12 wasn't a pretty 2008) ramp-down from the glory years of the Nineties. In 1990 we singlehandedly started the fall of Todd Marinovich, the infamous, "All I saw was Purple" dismantling on almost this same day nineteen years ago. Yeah, we're hungry. The Dawgs are out of Ty's doghouse and have a lot to prove. I think they are ready. I think they are primed. I think they will upset Number 3 ranked USC tomorrow (starting at 12:30 on regional ABC). I will even go so far as to predict the score (based on all that you have just read and all that it represents as both data and innuendo):

UW 38 USC 13

And I will not be upset if they win 14-13 either!

And it looks like I'm not the only one who thinks so. Watch for the twosome featured above, Jake and Johri, to have break out days.

You Could Be a Star


Our latest promo, the CompuTrainer Real Course Video/Bondi Band functional fashion statement. O yeah. They rock hard. Official size and weight. Used by more champion athletes than any other band bearing same logo. Fastest band on the market. By far the sexiest. Guaranteed to get you what you want whenever you want it. Rips abs and whitens teeth. More powerful than a steam locomotive. Improves your credit rating almost overnight. Repels conservative republicans. Helps you sleep. Improves IQ up to 299%*. No assembly required and does not include batteries. Lose weight FAST.

Who uses the all new and improved CompuTrainer Real Course Video/Bondi Band?

0530 HoP Spin Kidz.
Alien spinners from planet Styrofoam.
Chris Blazina
RCVman (shown the way many appreciate him most)

*Your actual results may vary.

On a serious note. We are giving these beautiful bands (and the second shipment in reverse color and bigger logo) away with the purchase of two (or more) RCVs at the CompuTrainer booth in Kona for this years Ironman World Championships. So stop by and see us and get your photo included in the next update. You could be a star!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Simon's Six

Had to get this one out before starting the annual Kona extravaganza. Shot mostly during my recent stay in the UK, this 3:35 quick hitter sums up Simon's (and many others) approach to triathlon training. It is also a marvelous example of the principal of reverse implied consent as I wouldn't have filmed, cut and posted it if I didn't 1000% agree.

The Six:

1) You are Unique.
2) Do No Harm.
3) Progressive Overload.
4) Specificity. (Love that word)
5) Adaptation.
6) No reversals. for more.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The New Noodle

A rising tide lifts all boats. By training at threshold, we become faster at threshold and all other intensities. You used to be able to ride one hour at 18mph and noodle at 16mph. Now you can hold 20mph for an hour and 18mph is the new noodle.

How do you develop the ability to ride 18mph for 6 hours or more on race day? Well, we can tell you that no amount of riding at 16mph is gonna get you there! You build the 18mph Noodle Fitness by riding often at 20mph. You earn the right to ride faster on race day by riding faster in training. Riding slowly for a long time does not produce results.

The entire two part article by Triathlon Coach Rich Strauss (and it's a great read)

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

542 Video

Some moving images from Sunday's climb up Mt. Baker. And yes that is Booker T. on the Hammond B-3 providing some tasty accompaniment near the summit. Kurt the climbing machine also makes the final cut twice, once in the CompuTrainer van in Glacier and again duking it out with less than 5K to go on the switchbacks.

This is a fabulous event folks so be sure to sign-up and climb-up next year. Special thanks to Charlie Heggem (shown several times with the megaphone) of for all his hard work and to the wonderful volunteers, all who make the day so special.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Rode 542

Long day (and distance) from Bellingham to to Artist's Point atop Mt. Baker for the annual Ride 542. I need to leave you with these as video renders and I drag my poor body upstairs for a snoozy. Video tomorrow night.

And the Huskies WIN!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Video Vitruvian

Eight minutes of the Vitruvian from Saturday's event. Out in the morning for Ride 542 in Bellingham. Couple of weeks off (kinda) till Kona. Enjoy every ride.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

542 Festival

Flew in from Manchester BOAC, didn't get to sleep last night. All the way Murakami's paperback was on my knee, man I had a dreadful flight. I'm back in the RCVman studios.

With apologies to the Fab Four (Lennon & McCartney in particular although Georgie Boy gets in a couple of juicy string-bending licks), I make it home in one piece. It's 0542 on Thursday and I am heading out momentarily for the first spin class of the fall schedule. With lot's of exciting new info, data and stories to share. They are best shared live, bit if you can't make it to the BAC this warm (very) late summer morning, please stay tuned for lot's of video in the upcoming days.

Here is the haps for this weekend: The 542 Festival up in beautiful Bellingham which, if last nights fly by at 40,000 feet is any indication, will be a spectacular weekend.

The UK girls really knock me out. Midori too.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009


People. And the joy thereof. We watched the movie Watchmen the other night. Had some interesting moments, a few killer CGIs and a plot that challenged even the most ardent Superhero fanatic. The end was particularly poignant and contained the dialogue that if the entire population of the planet was to suddenly self destruct, nature would hardly notice.

That is not to say that a percentage of people (albeit small) should be noticed now. And here. And often.

I am constantly reminded of this fact as I stumble through, and maneuver around the potholes, pitfalls, roadblocks and ironies of life in the modern world.

Case in point: We have been engaged in a rolling dialogue the past week of the differences between life in America and life in the UK. A current example is that of national health care. They have it and we don't. The opposition to Obama's plan are the GOP, and their conservative views and fear of socialism. Is it imbedded in this stance that the status quo is to be maintained at all costs because it serves a fraction of the population well, and others (of less entitled caste) not-so-well? Is fear of change so powerful that it is to be avoided at all cost? Is any concept the slightest bit "liberal" automatically labeled as "radical" and therefore, immediately evil? Are the insurance lobby, Big Pharma and the AMA THAT powerful and greedy?

Then what? Come on, give it to me. Tell me what I am missing other than the fact that, again, the powerful don't want to lose power, the wealthy don't want to lose wealth, and the system works fine as it is, so don't even think about change, let alone reform.

My friend Fiona, since her AG victory in Clearwater in 2007, and stunning performance at Kona in 2006, has been suffering from a condition diagnosed as chronic fatigue syndrome. She continues to maintain her hard-earned fitness through a greatly reduced training schedule, her coaching and a healthy lifestyle. We had a terrific 10K trail run the other day as example. Yet she was suffering shortness of breath and mild chest pains my entire stay, waiving them off with a "I'll be fine" comment after each incident. Walking up a slight hill to dinner Monday night we almost didn't make it because of this. Both Simon, her Mom Leslie, and I were very concerned.

Yesterday Fiona went to see another specialist to get an updated diagnosis. The MD immediately wrote her a prescription to go see a cardiologist at the hospital A&E, accidents and emergencies. Their version of our ER. Simon and I were notified as we were shooting video in a park near his office. We sped through the streets of Bradford in his Porsche Carerra to transport her to the A&E in a most Bond-like fashion. Fiona was admitted to the hospital for testing and an overnight stay.

As Simon and I gorged on pizza at their place later in the evening, the discussion began anew. I asked, "What about insurance for all of this?". "It's covered by NHS." National Health Service. "All of it, everything?" "Yes".

People. Doctors, Coaches, athletes, people-on-the-streets, conquerors, barristas, the best of us and the not-so-best. Number Ones and Numbers 2-2 billion. All of us. Every one. Take care of them while here.

People. Nature would notice if they were gone.

How she would react to their absence is another issue altogether.

Numer One (means Thomas in this case)
Constantine the Great as statue in York.
Leslie and the local FBI on the Shambles.
Dinner with Ian, Felicity, Simon and Fiona. RCVman's jacket designates his presence paparazzi.

Monday, September 7, 2009


RCVman took full advantage of a rare off day today to visit the historic city of York. An hour train ride north of Horsforth is the town once inhabited by both the Romans and Norseman. With Leslie as tour guide we managed to visit most of the must see sights in a full day of touring. This mixed with a fabulous lunch and a visit to the local acupuncture college where they did a number on my poor back, out of alignment neck and tired shoulders. One might say that after the 90 minute treatment that the person who appeared back in the walled city was a new RCVman.

The video we captured today will go for a nice little BBC-esque travel log so stay tuned for that VBA.

We have one more day with Simon & Fiona tomorrow at their shop/gym/office to film CompuTrainer and VeloTron training and promo pieces, and Wednesday I start the long trek home. That's eleven hours in the air. I might need some more needles and pins after that.

The York Ministry, built by Constantine the Great a few years back.
From the National Train Museum in York, lotsa polished steel.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

You are a Vitruvian


The 7th Vitruvian Man Triathlon is over. Twas a beautiful day in the central United Kingdom, blue skies, green hills, grazing sheep and a thousand triathletes. We stayed near the course in the warm and cozy cottage of Felicity and Ian, two of Simon's former clients. The race went off as perfect as the weather. We are back in Yorkshire taking a quick break from the last two day's non-stop activity (before a run and dinner), so this post is simply an update to show what was the tri-haps in Leichester yesterday. Tomorrow I should have some down time after another trail run along the canal and a visit to York to add some more photos and RCV commentary. I know the VBA will be holding collective breath for that!

PIX from the Vitruvian:

At the finish with Race Director Ian Hamilton, Fiona, Thomas Hellrigel and Simon.
In the University of Leeds lab with Physio Mark Hetherinton, Phil Graves (at 20, the youngest athlete to win both the UK Ironman and the UK 70.3) on the CompuTrainer in the sauna, and Simon.
Swim start at Rutland Water.
A portion of the spectacular 50 mile bike course around the lake (twice). Stay tuned for an RCV sample next week.

Cherrio from Leeds.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

31 Moorings

British Airways treated me right, helped nab the last aisle seat for the 9:45 flight across the Arctic to London. No sleep but the Bordeaux helped relax sore and tight muscles. The delay at Heathrow allowed a cheese panini and Simon was waiting in the Porshe upon arrival in Manchester. We raced to his office in Bradford, picked up Fiona and headed to their lovely place at 31 Morrings on the Leeds-Liverpool canal. I now sit at the kitchen table and try to time/space acclimate before dinner. Simon and I have already had a months worth of marketing discussion on the drive and tomorrow is the start of a busy few days of shooting.

Bradford kinda reminds me of home. It is gray, drizzling and 10 degrees too cold for this time of year. Don't let the glare on Si's Carrara or the rainbow outside their window fool ya. When on Bainbridge or at 31 Moorings, bring fleece.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Vitruvian Man

Out today for England. A week with my friends Simon & Fiona. Simon is The Triathlon Coach and the UK distributor for CompuTrainer. We have a busy week set up, with athlete interviews, sessions with multi-rider centers, coaching seminars, a day trip to the olde Roman town of York, and the RCV shoot at the Vitruvianman triathlon on Sunday. I am looking forward to the trip and excited about the film ops. Should be fun and productive. Plus I need a break from the grey drizzle of Seattle. Can't believe I said that. Oh, well, Kona is now a month away....

Will get in as many posts as possible while in the 'shire. Stay tuned and stay in shape!!!!!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Many More

Glad I now have 364 days to train for next years ride!

Centuries are always epic. You get the full physical and emotional roller coaster. We used to call it the E-ticket. Yesterday's 101 miles was no exception. The course was Chilly Hilly X3. I know these 33 miles intimately. Those of us who live and ride here all do. It is the default ride for Islanders, the strand of the Island, the Palomar of Bainbridge, the Queen K of Puget Sound. I initially thought that as well as the distance, I should also establish a time standard and go at about race pace. That lasted about ten miles and I settled into a "groove pace" that allowed some rose smelling and rubbernecking. After all it was my birthday and I was out for fun.

The 0830 first lap was in a shroud of fog, reminding me of San Francisco. I was glad that I added arm warmers at the last minute. Visibility was poor and across the calm waters Manchester looked like the cover of David Guterson's Snow Falling on Cedars. Got a call from the home office and had to stop and chat with Chuck for ten minutes. The news was good (very good) and I proceeded with a somewhat springier spin. At Port Madison there was a crew of carpenters getting started on a new composition roof on a 40x40 garage. Took me five minutes to cross 305. Weather Report Suite was playing on an endless loop inside my helmet, in particularly the keyboard parts.

As I live on the course, I used this as advantage to pit stop for a PBJ and e-mail check. Ten minutes later I was back on the course and the sun was in a winning battle to burn the mist. I was feeling pretty good and still pacing to manage fuel for the final (truth rendering) lap. Stopped at the Rollin Bay Jiffy Mart for a bottle of Gatorade (Ice Blue) and a snickers bar. I was amazed that the guys had already finished one complete side of the roof. Four minute break at Hidden Cove and 305 was just fine. Peterson Hill and Devil's Dip seemed a little steeper on the second loop, but legs and lungs were OK.

66 down and 33 to go. Remembered that I needed to do a bank deposit so shoved the envelope in jersey and headed out for final lap. Blue skies now with rolled down arm warmers. Neck and and shoulders a bit fatigued but all other moving parts holding up nicely. Crystal Springs and Port Blakeley rolled past with sparkling clarity. Dropped deposit at Kitsap Bank and got back on course. Stopped to see Anna Joe at the Rolling Bay Bakery and she fixed me up with a killer double short espresso, filled my water bottle (including ice) and served up a mouth watering sugar and carbo laden cinnamon roll (I passed on the micro and butter). After that it was the home stretch. The roofers were picking up their tools and heading home, jog completed. There was no traffic on 305 and I barely even stopped. Peterson Hill seemed flat and at the top of Arrow Point I was already tasting pizza and beer. Done.

1st lap: 2:14 (with phone call and pit stop)
2nd lap: 2:23 (Jiffy stop and pit)
3rd lap: 2:21 (Bakery)

6:58, 101, 8,690 ft. on 8.31.09

And many more.