Wednesday, December 28, 2011

New for the Holidays!

Great things are going on around M2 this December.  We have the new 60 Inch Plasma, and to go along with it an incredible Blu-Ray DVD player.  Already been amazed with our two new video sets.  Great gifts to the studio recently have been "Step Into Liquid" and the 2011 Tour de France.

M2's holiday has been great so far. Wishing everyone else a happy holiday and a great New Year! See you in the studio soon.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Kit Ordering - January Delivery

As everyone's season comes to an end, M2 is gearing up for next year.  Make sure you look good while bundled up with some sharp M2 winter kits.  Lets face it, we really didn't see a summer this year either so this is almost year round gear.

Voler has some new items to keep you warm with their "Artico" line of cycling shorts and knickers.  We have access to insulated and lightweight arm warmers to keep the cold and sun off all the time.

Samples are available in the studio to try on through November 29th, but please, try on before working out.  Proper decorum at M2.

To order click here.

You might order your winter gear now and the tri-gear at a later date.  I recommend the following items:
  • Long-sleeve jersey - essential winter gear - can be used most all of the year
  • Thermal vest if you are an early morning rider
  • Wind vest (lighter than thermal vest) if not so early morning rider and good for foggy summer rides
  • Bib Knickers for guys if you don't want to wear knee warmers
Standard Items
  • Short-sleeve jersey - can also be ordered later
  • Bib shorts guys - ladies might prefer non-bib for pit-stops
If we get order in by end of November we have the gear end of January.  Regarding tri-gear, it would be good to take advantage of the sizing samples while we have them.

Order Deadline is November 29th.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Guest Post - Tim Smith at ITU Long Course World Championship

Tim has been a great athlete at M2 over the past two years.  He has left us for a while to work in Australia, but he made his way back to the States for the ITU Long Course World Championships a week ago and had a great race.  Here is his experience from Las Vegas!
Well, my first experience in any sort of event I had to qualify for, let alone something with the prestige of the world championships has come and gone.  The ITU Long Course World Championships was an amazing experience and I can’t thank my mom, sister, my “manager”, and my awesome friends and family for being there for me at the event and supporting me with good vibes back in SF and Australia.  I came into this event feeling pretty confident after managing 2nd place in my age group at my first tri in Australia, even after some stomach issues caused me to have two unforeseen “breaks” that cost me a chance at 1st place.  My swim was starting to feel better and more efficient, I’ve never felt stronger on the bike, and I was looking forward to redeeming myself and having the sort of run I knew I was capable of.  I was back in the states, feeling good, and excited to represent Team USA and do my best.

I really didn’t have much in terms of expectations for this race as I snagged the last qualifying spot in my age group at Wildflower back in May.  To be honest, I was just stoked to be at an event that had “World Championships” in the title, and so I really focused on not worrying about anything or anyone other than myself.  I knew I would be competing against some of the best age groupers from all over the world, so I really just wanted to show that my qualifying was legit, and that I belonged in this realm of athletes.  The distance (4km, 120km, 30km) was nothing like I had ever tackled, and I didn’t really know whether to approach it like a half or full Ironman, so really just decided to go based on feel, and if I felt good to go for it.  “Do the best you can and control what you can control” was the mantra I kept pounding into my head.

I hit one last M2 session the Tuesday evening before the race and then drove to Santa Barbara Tuesday night to meet up with my manager and best friend, Lucas so we could drive to Vegas together.  Thursday and Friday saw the usual shit show of registration, figuring out my tri-munchies plan, checking in the bike, run bag, and worrying about all sorts of random things.  Luckily Lucas and I were staying with the Goffsteins; the parents of our best friend from college, and they were so amazing in making us feel right at home and comfortable.   Friday saw a lot of movie watching and kicking up the feet, and after a trip to the cinema for the new Harold & Kumar Christmas movie, I slept like a baby.


Goals:  Swim: 1:04-1:10; Bike: 3:30-3:45; Run: 2:05-2:15

I woke up early Saturday morning to make sure that I could get my nutrition plan exactly on point.  I had no stomach issues at Wildflower this year so I made sure that I went back to that exact plan.  Three pieces of white bread, peanut butter, a banana, and two cups of coffee was what I had before I walked out the door.  Waking up the manager is always a difficult task, but he didn’t give me too much grief and we were on the road at 5:30am.

It was freezing cold when I got out of the car and I started to get nervous that this might cause a repeat of the hypothermia I suffered last year at the World’s Toughest Half Ironman in Auburn.  Then, as we approached the transition area, people were running around like chickens with their heads cut off and screaming all sorts of random things.  “Swim is cancelled” was all I heard and while I was surprised, it made a lot of sense considering the air temp was around 40 degrees.  The race officials were worried about hypothermia, and while I was excited for the 4km swim, and knew it would be beneficial for IM New Zealand in March, I’d be lying if I said that I wasn’t a bit relieved that I wouldn’t be shivering for the 6 hours I was going to be spending in the brisk air after exiting the water.  In situations like this you can a) freak out and worry, or b) stay calm and adapt.  Normally I think I would freak out, but I think the fact that I’m starting to get more race experience is benefiting me as I kind of just shrugged my shoulders and started to prepare for how this would change things. They decided to do a time trial start on 5” intervals, so I threw on my jacket over my Team USA kit, put on my gloves, two pairs of socks and got ready to roll.


3-2-1 and I was off.  Can’t say I’ve ever started a bike ride that way, but again, not in my control so I managed.  The course was quite narrow at the beginning so passing people was not easy.  I was yelling at some Japanese guys in my AG that I was coming on the left and of course they move to the left.  After some weaving and swerving I finally made it out of the Lake Las Vegas area and onto the main Highway.  After 10 minutes I was averaging around 275 watts which is just under my 90% level and way too high for that point in the race.  My goal was 230-240 watts normalized for the race, so I decided to scale it back as this is a long and very hilly ride and overall net gain by almost 1,000 feet.  The course was gorgeous and honestly one of my favorite rides ever.  The desert is such beautiful scenery and as I was pounding away on the hills, passing people left and right I have to admit that I started to think about how cool IM St. George would be...Back to the task at hand, I was feeling great and my legs were holding up really well as mile 50 approached.  I was sipping my accelerade, taking gels and Gu chomps every 30 minutes, and I had 1 ½ mini pay days.  All the guys that were with me at the beginning were no where to be seen as my ability to stay consistent with my power was starting to benefit.  Gotta thank M2 for this one; power training really does work...

At mile 56 the hills start to kick in.  It was the first time where getting out of the saddle was a must but to my surprise it felt great to stand and then settle back in over these “3 sisters”.   I mean I’m used to the 7 bitches in SF, so this didn’t seem like much in comparison.  After cresting the 3rd sister is where the real work began and I started to really excel.  I could hear M2 telling me to get stronger as the ride got longer and I really made an effort to do just that.  There is about 10 miles of a false flat uphill and I started picking off the few guys from my age group who had passed me earlier and also a lot of the women pros.  Once I got to mile 70 my legs started to tire and the watts dropped off a bit.  I was pretty concerned that my legs would be toast and that I might see a repeat of Forster (Au tri), but I decided to put my head down, grind out the last few miles and just see what happened.  I rolled into T2, handed off my bike, and ran into the tent to get my run gear.  75.4 miles, 5500 feet of climbing and a 3:34 split...I was stoked to say the least.

Time 3:34:20; Avg. Watts = 235, normalized = 239


I decided to keep both pairs of socks I had on the bike on for the run as my feet were completely numb.  I came out hot out of T2 with a Gu, my sports legs pills, and....No Garmin.  I am really good at forgetting my Garmin, but once I realized this it was too late to go back and get it, I took a chill pill, simmered, and told myself to just go on feel.  As I mentioned earlier, I was feeling nervous at the end of the ride that I had expended too much energy on the ride and that I was going to be toast, but as I came out of T2 down the first hill I felt absolutely great.  My stomach felt fine, my stride cadence was high, and my form felt great.  The course was 4 laps of 2 ¼ miles up, 2 ¼ miles down.  It was nice because it was very spectator friendly and you could see the competition, but not so sweet because it got a bit boring.  My first two laps felt great and I could tell I was ahead of most people in my age group.  I passed the two guys left in my age group who were ahead of me off the bike, and at this point, I was either in 1st or 2nd place in my age group.  I could see one of the guys who I raced against at Wildflower, Nick Sigmon, catching up on me though.  This kid had the fastest amateur run time at Wildflower and ended up w/ the fastest amateur run time on this day as well.  At every turn around I could see him closing in, and while I was doing my best to hold him off, I knew he was going to catch me somewhere on lap 3.  Right before he passed me, one other guy from my age group passed me, and I did my best to try and copy his stride for as long as I could.  He (Alex Hooke) ended up 1st overall in M2529, so I guess I can’t feel too bad about that.  I was starting to get tired on the third lap, and I kept telling myself to just get to the top of the hill for lap 3, the run back down would be fine, and then to just enter the pain cave for lap 4.

Once I got to lap 4 I was hurting real bad.  Side stitches, leg cramps, and bonking were starting to occur.  I was slamming coke and water at every aid station, and looking back on it, I think I neglected the electrolytes a bit on the run.  I passed my mom, sister, and Lucas on the death march up to the top of the hill for lap 4, and they were cheering me on a lot which really helped.  I finally made it to the top of the hill and saw another guy from my age group who I had passed earlier, was catching up on me.  This guy Gerry Marvin went to Kona this year and is an absolute stud on the bike (3:30 split at this race – fastest in M25-29), but I had passed him fairly early in the run.  I didn’t know exactly where I stood at this point because of the TT start, but I knew I had a shot for the podium and that I wasn’t going to let him pass me.  Once I got to the top of the hill on lap 4 I put the pedal to the metal.  That last mile, while it was downhill, was done in around 6:15 and while all I wanted to do was stop, I found myself smiling and feeling really good about giving it everything I had.  Gerry never ended up passing me, I sprinted across the finish line, and couldn’t have been happier.

Time: 2:09:09

Total time: 5:45:33, 18th overall amateur, 3rd AG

I stumbled into the athlete tent, grabbed a few pieces of pizza and some fruit and had a quick chat with both Alex Hooke and Nick Sigmon (1st and 2nd respectively in the AG).  It was really awesome to meet these guys and everyone was pretty stoked on how each other did.  I wobbled out of the tent and met up with my mom, sister, and Lucas.  My mom was pretty amped to see me on two feet and not in a heap like after my first Ironman.  A few hugs and some chilling and at long last, the Sierra Nevada special edition Belgian Beer courtesy of brew master Marc.  This day was complete and a total success.

I soon found out that Team USA had swept the 3 podium spots for M25-29, and that I somehow managed to squeak my way on there.  The thought of getting 3rd in the world for my age group never even crossed my mind leading up to the race.  The fact that I put very little pressure on myself worked to my advantage and I think my relaxed attitude is something I definitely need to bring to future races.  I’ve got a lot of work to do with IM Asia-Pacific 70.3 Championship in Thailand in 3 weeks, and IM New Zealand in March, but this result gave me a ton of confidence that I can hang with the best amateurs in the world and that I really do belong in the same breath as them.  I couldn’t be more stoked for what lies ahead and I think what keeps me motivated and focused for what lies ahead is what M2 had to say following my race: “Give yourself a pat on the back for a job well done. can do even better...”

Stay hungry and stay humble.  I can’t wait for what lies ahead.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

2012 Group Training Info Session

2012 is right around the corner and that mean we need to start thinking about training! Are you looking to challenge yourself at the Ironman or 70.3 distance in 2012, and are:
  Perhaps intimidated by the volume of training you might feel is required?
  An experienced endurance athlete, but looking for a distinct approach with a proven track record?
  Looking for a more hands-on program with regular weekly access to your coach and cycling classes?

M2 has a great group forming for many of the 2012 IM and ½ IM calendar events: Oceanside 70.3, IM Texas, Wildflower Long Course, IM St. George, IM CdA, IM France, and other assorted endurance events on the 2012 calendar!  Come to an informal info session where M2 will outline the goals, philosophy and structure of his group training program.
Info session: Friday, October 28th, 2012 at 6:15pm
Location: M2 Revolution - 1440 Bush Street
Whether you are training for a specific event or just want the company and camaraderie of a motivated group of swimmers/riders/runners, the M2 Group Program is a great way to gain fitness and skills. 
M2’s training methodology is characterized by:
  Smart performance training methodology versus fitness-stagnation and training joy buzz-kill volume.
Blending challenge, adventure, and our beautiful surroundings to test one’s mettle in preparation.  Boring, mind-numbing workouts are not part of our training lexicon!
Group camaraderie fostered by a premiere training center and weekend group outings. 
His program includes all cycling classes, access to Vasa Trainer and Alter-G treadmill, training programs, & weekend outings.

The group training launches in December and January, so come to the info session to find out how you can prep for your 2012 half or full Ironman.
If this program sounds right to you, check out these relevant M2 articles which detail more of the M2 training philosophy:
                Train Less, Train Smarter, Race Faster
                Watt it Takes to go 9hr24min at IMAZ
                Training Backwards, the Pyramid Turned Upside Down

Come see what the program is all about and ask M2 himself how best for you to train.  Look for more info on his website:  You can also learn more about his program by clicking on M2 News on this homepage.

Here’s to a great 2012 race season and I’ll see you next Friday.


Friday, October 14, 2011

Ironman World Championship!

 M2 was represented well this past weekend in Kona.  Over the past year, these individuals made incredible progress in class and their races.  They had to deal with rough waters, and high temperatures, but some favorable biking conditions for a great day.  As they slowly come back to class after some well deserved time off, lets share our appreciation for their dedication and great performances at this great stage.  Here are some highlights and photos of their trips.

Congratulations Larry, Stefan, Sandrine and Brett!

Stefan Irion - 9:42:32
Brett Miller - 9:53:40
Larry Davidson - 11:36:07
Sandrine Micoleau - 11:44:18

Stefan and Larry had to conquer the evil St. George Ironman.  Sandrine improved her IM PR by 20 minutes while qualifying just over a month ago at Ironman Canada.  Brett was forced to hold off cramping in the 90+ heat of Texas for his spot. 

Of course we can't forget about the super cheer squad/volunteers who made the trip, Kahn Wu and Ivy Viola.  I'm sure you were very much appreciated out there.

Men's Pro Race
Craig "Crowie" Alexander - 8:03:56
Pete Jacobs - 8:09:11
Andreas Raelert - 8:11:07
Dirk Bockel - 8:12:58
Timo Bracht - 8:20:12

Women's Pro Race
Chrissie Wellington - 8:55:08
Mirinda Carfrae - 8:57:57
Leanda Cave - 9:03:29
Rachel Joyce - 9:06:57
Caroline Steffen - 9:07:32

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Dreadmills - Alter-G and High Speed at M2

 For many people the treadmill is a tortuous thing that they stay away from at all costs, but it can be an incredibly beneficial tool in a run program, or cross training.  You can see M2 athletes using the treadmills all the time with the High Speed treadmill, and the Alter-G.  What you may not know is that both are included for M2 Gold Pass members.

You can reserve time on both treadmills. The High Speed treadmill is very easy to schedule and most often you can jump on without reserving. This treadmill is one of the few you will find in the city that can reach speeds of 16 MPH. Great for dialing in fast track workouts, and for focusing on the development quick turnover and fast twitch muscle fibers.

The Alter-G requires some time to set up, and some time to get acquainted with how to properly operate. M2 can give a quick over view to get you started.  A reservation for the Alter-G is almost always required. The Alter-G is great for rehabilitation of an injury, over-speed training to increase turnover and/or for low impact mileage during peak training blocks.  

For non-cycling class hours, the treadmills are available, but special arrangements are needed to gain access to the studio.

While Gold Pass Members have access to these tools, you have to be set up with a log-in to reserve the treadmills.  Feel free to email to studio at

Access to the newly upgraded reservation system can be found here:
M2 Revolution Reservations

In the coming weeks we will have further instructional videos and blog posts on effectively using these tools to further your training. 

Packages for membership and Alter-G

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Monday Night Football!

The first week of football season left the Monday night class weary and looking for a good running game to show up and take some time off the clock.  Tom Brady and the pass happy Patriots left the legs wobbled after an offensive explosion!  M2 was very happy to see his Pats put the fish down fairly easily but it also turned the workout brutal. 

Here's the lowdown on workouts for watching the game.

Hopefully, with the normal warm up and priming we can start at the beginning of a quarter, giving 15 game minutes for the main set.  This is the NFL, so of course there is a lot of commercials and plenty of time when the clock is not running so the main set can get pretty long so come prepared with two water bottles and mix some Gatorade in one of them to keep fueled.

The rules are simple:
#1 Constant effort at 80 percent base watts
#2 Completed pass - 10 second stand
#3 First Down - 30 second acceleration of 10 watts
#4 Touchdown - 60 second acceleration of 10 watts

Any event can be combined as well.  If there is a completed pass for a first down, then you do a 10 second stand, then perform the 30 second acceleration.

Next Monday we may see much of the same with Eli Manning and the Giants hosting Sam Bradford and the St. Louis Rams.

See you Monday!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Guest Race Report - Ryan Kendrick Long

Not every race day goes as planned.  One member of our Canada crew had to learn that the hard way as adversity was thrown his way, but he dealt with the problems as well as anyone could.  His experience also highlights how much having a supportive team around you can help along the way, be it friends, family, or thoughtful volunteers.

Here's Ryan's Canada experience, its an amazing one.  Congratulations on an inspirational finish!
I've been training with M2 since the beginning of the year for IM Canada.  M2 is a big proponent of teaching his students to be ready for the unexpected.  In an IM event there is only so much you can plan for, but you can be assured that there will be some new challenges that you will need to overcame in the spur of the moment.  I am a believer of this philosophy.  But never in my 9 months of training for this event would I expect to be lying on the pavement, bike on the ground, sunglasses thrown off me, and as I later found out, helmet cracked.

I'd spent 6 days a week preparing for this event for the majority of the year.  Just prior to the race I was feeling great, I was in the best shape of my life and everything was pointing to me having a good race.  I had some pretty specific race finishing times in mind too.  I arrived at Canada a few days before the race to get settled in and do all the needed check-in requirements. We had a contingent of about 50 or so from San Francisco that I knew really well and it was nice seeing all of them all over town.  Karen had come up to watch me as did my parents.  Race day arrived and I was in a good spot; "glorified training day" was a mantra that our group has been using this year and I was surprisingly calm.  Made my way down to transition and got everything ready, saw a bunch of my friends and before we knew it we were in the water about to start.

The gun goes off and off we go into the water, with all the preparation work we do the entire year, its almost as we go into auto-drive.  The swim went generally as planned.  Finished in 1:24 and off to the wetsuit strippers and changing room.  A few minutes later I was on the bike and headed onto the course.

The first 41 miles of the bike course is generally down hill and quite fast.  Nothing really to do here but take it easy and save energy for Richter Pass and Yellow lake.  I settle into a good pace which finds me passing quite a few people.  I pass when I can, saw hi to a few people that I know and soon enough I arrive at Aid station 2 at mile 19.  I was to the left of one rider and he pulled right and got something first.  I went around called out what I wanted, made eye contact with the volunteer and got a water bottle.  Another guy in front of me on the left most part of the lane decided he wants a banana or something, and without looking or signalling he pulls completely right to another volunteer which is in front of me and significantly slows down.  I have no where to go.  The next thing I know I was eating asphalt.  I distinctly remember yelling “F#CK” when I hit the ground.   The volunteers rush to our aide.  My adrenaline is pumping and while I feel ok, I know that from the force of the impact that it was a hard crash.  Many thought went through my head at that time.

Is my race done after all this training?

The first pain I feel is one on my fourth finger, looks like there is a bloody as hell hang nail there.  I also notice that my right knee is really banged up and bleeding a lot.  A volunteer asks me how I’m doing, but I don’t know how to respond.  Another one comes up and sprays me knee and shoulder with water.  I notice that my bike is lying a good 5 feet from me.  Someone else asks if my head is ok.  I don't know, it feels fine at this point.

Is my bike ok comes to mind?

I see that my rear hydration holder is broken and the 2 water bottles in it are missing.  After a few minutes I somehow start to gather myself and pick up my sunglasses and proceed to my bike.  I do a quick check over and the bike seems ok to ride.  I spin the front wheel and the brake is rubbing against it, move the front brake a bit and it seems ok.  I want to check on the other fellow involved in the accident to see how he is doing and overhear him yelling at the volunteers to get my race number.  I turn around and he yells to me “there is no passing on the right, you are going to be disqualified”  Whatever, I tell him my race number as I know I didn’t do anything wrong.  He yells at me again that “I’m going to get you disqualified”  Time for me to go.  I get on the bike and start a mental checklist of what is wrong with me and the bike.  The rear gears are shifting really slow, not surprising.  I try to get into aero position, and my right elbow screams at me.  Road rash over there too.  Blah, I start to think if I should even continue at this point.  I have another 92 miles to ride and a Marathon to run, finding out that your disqualified at the end means alot of time and energy can be potentially wasted at this point.  I also start wondering if I can still get into IM Wisconsin somehow if I do get disqualified or succumb to my injuries later in the day.  I realize that there is nothing in the world I can do at that time to change either of those outcomes so I kick it out of my head - don't need that looming around for the rest of the day.  I notice that there is a rip on the right hip side of my bib shorts and a large tear on my right shoulder too.  Oh whells, nothing to do about that too.  I shift thought more of the gears in the back and see that I’ve lost the smallest cassette and the biggest one, my climbing gear is gone.  This can be a problem as spinning up the climbs versus mashing up in a bigger gear saves your legs for the run.  I stop at the aid station at the beginning of Richter Pass and ask if there is a mechanic.  A volunteer says one will be there shortly.  Shortly can mean 5 minutes to forever.  At least my bike hasn’t been converted into a singled speed consisting of a 53 x 13 or something.  Also, we have done Mt Shasta!!  Richter Pass is a speed bump compared to that.  Off I go again.  M2 is at the top of Richter!  He is clapping and cheering all of us.  He asks me how I’m doing and I point to my knee and shoulder.  He asks if I went down.  Yup was my answer.  I grab water and this ironman poweraid drink at the aid stations.  I haven’t used this ironman poweraid drink at all this entire year.  Introducing it now and missing my usual nutrition can cause havoc when I change to the run.  Yup, nothing I can do about that either.  The rest of the ride was pretty non-eventful.  Jamie catches me on the out and back, I’m surprised to be playing leap frog with Skinner for a long time (I swear she’s been on the bike 4 times this year), Yellow lake comes and goes, notice that on the long non-technical descents that people are passing me.  Weird, I have 808’s.

Pulling into town means that the bike course is almost over.  Yes, I’m ready to get off this damn thing.  I see Karen cheering for me not too far from transition I’m excited to use the volunteers who catch your bike and rack it for you for the first time.  Dismount and then walk your bike 10 feet to the volunteers.  I dismount and, my right hip scream pain as I take my first step to the volunteer.  Shit, I limp my way into the changing tent and and ask to go to the medical tent.  A doctor comes up and ask’s me what is going on.  I tell him what hurts and show him my wounds.  Its the first time I see what’s going on with my hip.  There is a bruise the size of a softball there now.  He ask’s me if it’s important if I finish this race.  Yes, was my response.  He advises me NOT to go to the medical tent as they probably won’t let me continue on with the race.....Off I go again, to the run course this time.  I am in extreme pain.  My right hip area is cramping and with each step with my right leg there is so much pain.  The crowd encourages me to continue.

 I make it half a mile when Heather catches up to me, she can see how bad I am.  At this point I’m unable to walk in a straight line, she says to walk with her for a bit.  I can’t, it hurts too much.  I want to cry.  I can’t do this another 52 times I think to myself.   I see Heather running down the other way as this is a short out and back and tell her to go get Karen, I’m going to DNF the race.  This isn’t the Ironman I trained for or wanted, I think to myself.  “Ryan, you got this”  “Keep moving Ryan, keep moving” was yelled to me by the crowd at this point.  I’m sure they could see what was going on in my mind and I keep going.

I see the first aid station up ahead across the street.  This is still the out and back part, so I ask one of the volunteers to bring me a Coke, they have Pepsi, blah it works.  I feel better.  Slowly make my way through the out and back and hit up the same aid station.  I stop here and take in 3-4 pepsi’s, a buncha of pretzels, and water.  My fourth finger is still stinging like hell from 5 hours ago and I stick it in a cup of ice.  I start moving again, and somehow manage a gimpy run of some sorts.  I think its a 15 or 16 minute mile, great....  “Ryan, you going to FINISH this keep going, your going to FINISH this”  Karen has made her way over.  She keeps yelling me words of encouragement, maybe more on the lines of NOT finishing is NOT an option.  I keep going.  M2 see’s me from transition and ask’s how I’m doing.  I give him a a sorts of thumbs down.  He says he’ll be there shortly.  Karen is now asking me what is wrong and I tell her I’m cramping with every step on my right hip.  She asks me if I’m taking enough salt.  Oh, she hasn’t heard.  I show her my wounds and being the doctor she is, sympathy comes second to fixing the problem.  She tells me to put some ice and cool off the bruise on my right hip.  Hmmm, how to do that?  I grab another cup of ice, water, and sponges from the aid station.  I think I start holding the ice over my hip and am carrying the water and sponger with my other hand.

M2 shows up and asks me whats going on.  I show him, and he tells me to figure out a way to put a cool sponge in my shorts over the bruise and to drop everything else, as you can’t run properly like that.  I’m sure I look pretty absurd at this point.  I drop everything and make do.  He also tells me to keep going as I’ve come too far to not finish now.  Make Lemonade out of Lemons he says.  True words.  Karen yells some more words of encouragement.  She is running up the side of the course, waiting for me, and repeating.  She takes me all the way to the edge of town which I think is mile 4 or so.  I tell her I’ll finish this thing.  This part is the long part of the race, the going is slow, lonely, and painful.  My routine consists of running when possible, walking when I need to, but to just keep moving at this point.  Walking is the main source of motion at this point.  Every aid station is lots of pretzels, Pepsi, sponges and sitting down.  I just want to make it to the turnaround.  Its a long and slow going, I finally make it and my split is a 3:30, OMG this is ridiculously long.  Turn around and make my way back.  See a bunch of my M2 training buddies along with fellow GGTC’ers.  Its nice to see them on the course.  The way back is more of the same along the lake, the sun is starting to set.  The jokes I made before about not getting a glow stick on the run are surprisingly not funny at this point, I shouldn't of made them in the first place.  I admit wrongness.

I make it to the end of the lake and Karen pops up again.  She has been waiting for me there the entire time!  It’s a very lonely part of the course, comparable of sitting in an empty Safeway parking lot for 5 hours or so, wow!  I’m at mile 22 or so now and calculate that if I finish under 40 minutes Ill be under 14 hours.  No problem is my initial reaction as 10 min/miles on regular runs is nothing.  Wait, I just did a 3:30 half, never mind.  Getting closer to town your mood gets better, there are more spectators on the course and the anticipation of finishing is alot stronger.  Karen does much of the same on the way back and the closer I get to town the more I can hear the crowd.  It pushes you and motivates you.  It becomes more real.  Soon I’m at the last 1.5 miles, this is the same out and back as in the beginning.  I see my mom!  Reach the turn around to the end and I see my Dad!!  Soon, I’m running through the finisher chute and the sensation is unreal.  I raise my hands in the air and run through the finish ribbon!  I’m done!

Volunteers catch me and off I go to the medical tent.  The doctors there say there isn't much they can do for me as if they bandage me up, it will be for nothing once I take a shower.  I look for some food and they have all the aid station food.  Blah, that’s the last thing I want at this time.  There is pizza on the other side, its....Dominoes, blah.  Eat one anyways.  Karen finds her way on the other side of the fence and after eating, I find my parents and gather my things.  I have to drop off my bike to be shipped back to SF.  I’m pretty afraid to go look at it.  Find it and start pushing it, its not rolling that well.  The rear brake is rubbing...that explains being passed on the downhills!  Oh whells.  Take a few photos with the family as I want to go home at this point.  Drop off bike and make the walk home.  Sleep is achieved relatively easily that night.

As of now, I'm still pretty banged up.  The soreness has just really started hitting me and it hurts to walk still.  The day after my neck starting getting really sore.  Took my helmet out of my transition bag and yup, there is a crack on it.  My bike hasn’t arrived back from Tri Bike Transport yet and I’m pretty scared to see what the damage is and what the cost is.  Major props to Kahn for giving me one of his two extra X-labs rear hydration.  My favorite bib shorts and jersey are really ripped up, need to get new ones.  The old ones will be re-appropriated for spin use.  M2 will be happy see that in class.

A lot have asked if I’m going to sign up for another one now.  My initial goal time of the race was 13:00 hours with it dropping a bit in the last few months of training.  I finished in 14:16:51.  Not even close, but the day turned out alot different than planned.  I’d like to think many people don't achieve their goal Ironman during their first try, that's probably why its called an Ironman.  As of now I’m just trying to heal up and be able to walk normally before signing up for another race.  When I think about the day in its entirety, I’m just happy that I finished the race.  Also have to remind myself that its not just the time results of the race that count, but the path to the starting line.  Joining the M2 IM Canada training groups was one of the best decision of my life.  I’ve made numerous life friends on the process to the starting line.  We’ve done so much together as come so far.  I wouldn’t trade any of that part of the journey for anything!

Interesting facts of the day:

I went down at over 20 MPH.
I was down for maybe 3-4 minutes.
I still finished the bike course in 6:09:29, not too bad.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

M2 Revolution Athletes take on Ironman Canada

As many of us settle back into our regular, non-Ironman lives, I wanted to say how great it was to see all of you out on the course this past weekend at Ironman Canada.  It’s been an amazing year of training and I look forward to more to come.

Congratulations to all the M2 members who raced:
Bita Sistani
Dave Ewart
Dennis Dauz
Emmanuel Madrigal
Faith Bolliger
Heather Singerman
Howard Skebe
Jaimie Westcott
Jen Ruebenstein
Jen Kremen
Jenni Kirk
Jenny Arden
Kahn Wu
Katya Black
Kate Williams
Kelly McDonough
Kenneth Clews
Lauren Skinner
Lena Van Haren
Newton Ganac
Peter Kacandes
Rachel Wadsworth
Ryan Long
Steve Fleming

It was a very happy and emotional M2 returning to Penticton with a great bunch of athletes.  Very proud of you all.