Saturday, February 26, 2011

A Quick Programming Note

Hello all--

I just wanted to let everybody know of a programming delay here at Crashing the Boards. I have a rather large project that is due in one of my law classes here early in the week, and will need to be my priority.

However, I did want to let everybody know about my next piece here, which will talk about why companies want to leave you confused in regards to running shoes these days. Think of it as the companion piece to the natural v. minimal v. barefoot v. traditional post that came previously here.

Be ready. And have fun!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Motivational Moments...

No, not this kind:

Words are extremely powerful things. They convey emotion, thought, and to continue the theory on down through, it is basic humanity.

Think of the things that have inspired, and that have brought both greatness and terror. The power that the word has given rise to some of our greatest, and worst, moments as a collective. As such, they make for extremely powerful items when it comes to you.

These are just a few of the mantras that have helped carry me through to this point so far. I can only hope that they are as good for you, as they are for me. Comment below to vote for your favorite, or to post your own.

"To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift."
--Steve Prefontaine

"Only those who attempt the absurd will achieve the impossible."
--M.C. Escher

"Dark, unreasonable fear can twist and grind an individual. It is necessary to dig deep within oneself to discover that hidden grain of steel...called will."
--Ryan Shay

"Don't give up. Don't ever give up."
--Jim Valvano

"What's so bad about being a dreamer?"
--Chris McCormack

"What we have is based upon moment-to-moment choices of what we do.In each of those moments, we choose. We either take a risk and move toward what we want, or we play it safe and choose comfort. Most of the people, most of the time, choose comfort. In the end, people either have excuses or experiences; reasons or results; buts or brilliance. They either have what they wanted or they have a detailed list of all the rational reasons why not."

"Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, covered in scars, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming 'hell yeah', what a ride."

"Let me tell you something you already know. The world ain't all sunshine and rainbows. It's a very mean and nasty place and I don't care how tough you are it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain't about how hard ya hit. It's about how hard you can get it and keep moving forward. How much you can take and keep moving forward. That's how winning is done! Now if you know what you're worth then go out and get what you're worth. But ya gotta be willing to take the hits, and not pointing fingers saying you ain't where you wanna be because of him, or her, or anybody!"
--Sylvester Stallone as Rocky Balboa

"Live every moment."
--Peter Booty

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Announcing Tri-ing Harder for Cancer Research

I am happy to announce that I am officially using this year's triathlon season to raise money for the Lance Armstrong Foundation, also known as LIVESTRONG.

As utilized previously here on the blog, I'll be using the press conference style question-and-answer session here to clarify and detail how and why I have chosen to raise money for LIVESTRONG.

You are correct to point out that in my December entry, I would only be raising money for Rev3. However, one of the main reasons I had chosen Timberman for my other 70.3 race this year was because it is the closest location for my family, and I believe that the race embodies the spirit of my late father-in-law.

Wait, weren't you going to race via charity entry to Rev3? What gives?
To make a long story short: Rev3 was associated with the V Foundation for cancer research. For this season, though, the charity slots at their races are not associated with the V Foundation, but instead the Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults. Although I feel that the Ulman Fund is indeed a worthy cause for many people, it is only designed to help people between the ages of 15-40. That wouldn't have helped out my father-in-law. Therefore, I decided to raise money for a different charity that would.

So how are you entering Rev3 Quassy?
God. Bless. Tax. Refunds.

What are you doing to raise money? How can someone help?
There are two different options to help. A person can decide to contribute to my personal fundraising page. Alternatively, if one wishes to join in by racing this season in triathlon, there is a collective team as well. Please e-mail me if you have questions about joining Tri-ing Harder.

As you are probably more than well aware, LIVESTRONG was founded by Lance Armstrong following his own battle with cancer. It is his enduring spirit to crusade against cancer, to make battles like Peter's, or Jim Valvano's, or anybody else's battles, eventually unnecessary. It drives me to race under their banner.

So what's your next step with this project?
My fundraising pages are linked above. And now it's time to put the nose to the grindstone, and compete to the best of my ability.

Are you racing under Team LIVESTRONG?
No, I will not. As stated previously, I am sponsored by Team Sports Bistro. I will more often than not be seen in The Sustainable Athlete team colors as well, as the embodying spirit of relying on an athlete's intuition, leaving a small footprint on the planet, and striving for your best is one I feel matches with Peter's.

Training updates to give?
Training is going along quite well. In week 4 of my training program. Feeling much faster through the swim, as I feel I have unlocked a big key in swimming. To share bluntly, slow = smooth = fast. I'll leave you to ponder on that for the time being.

I'm also still dialing in the bike fit, as we're changing the stem on Kermit to bring the base bar a little closer to my body. As an aside, if anybody is looking for a 100 mm stem with a 26 mm base bar clamp...let me know. At any rate, I'm definitely feeling strong so far. That sound you hear is me knocking on wood as we chat.

Thank you for your time today. Any parting words?
Only those who attempt the absurd will achieve the impossible. And always, tri harder.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Modifying Training

Let's start this one with a hypothetical:

You're supposed to do a specific workout, or event, on a particular day. You hear warnings of bad weather, but ignore them. There is work to be done. Dawn breaks on the day in question, and your alarm beeps you out of deep slumber. You peer outside your window, looking at the rest of the world, and think only to yourself: Crap.

It's insane outside.

That describe your winter? Welcome to New England, my friends.

The key to surviving a winter up here is flexibility, in both your mindset and in your training. Although for many early season races, including my own, specific workouts need to be done during the course of the week, you need to maintain the flexibility to fit your workouts into the cards that Mother Nature, and life itself, have dealt you.

My own personal success has come from utilizing a couple of different strategies:

  1. Modifying the training schedule itself: Although having a training schedule mapped out can be incredibly helpful in getting you on the path to success, it is also important to be able to change things on the fly. As being a law student, there are specific days that simply do not work for me to try to fit two workouts in, as my training schedule calls for. Instead, I simply move those workouts around in order to fit them appropriately in. However, I try to continue to space out my long days in each sport from one another, and try to follow each long day with a recovery day in a different sport. It winds up looking a bit messy, but so far, so good.
  2. Replacing workouts: sometimes, the skiing is too good to pass up. Or, family obligations change your schedule. Or...well, last night was just a little too much fun. The key here, as always, is to figure out what you can afford to pass up on. For me, swimming is my weak link, whereas running is my strongest. So if I squeeze a ski day in, it will more than likely replace a run workout for the week. If I go twice, the second time will replace a bike ride. I need to keep the mileage up, but be mindful of the intensity and muscle groups involved. Skiing can be a hybrid of running or cycling strength; figure out which, and you can figure out how to effectively replace some workouts.
  3. Bypassing workouts entirely: Listen to your body. If you're exhausted, it's time to dial it back a notch. Your body will be more appreciative of the extra rest, and come back and attack well. Put the past behind you. Get focused on what next task must be accomplished, and you'll have clearer focus for your next workout.

Sorry for the delay between posts; the skiing has just been far too good, and I've been running around a bit with the start of the Rev3 Quassy program. But I promise to stay further updated. Expect a product review for more nutrition products, and a ski day report, for next week.

As always, stay safe and have fun out there!