Sunday, August 30, 2009

RCT Pre Tri Clinic

This weekend was the Rose City Triathlon Pre-Tri Clinic #2, it's mainly for beginners to help them not be so nervous and better prepared on race day. It was good time as you can see from the pictures race director Steve Farris yellin' out orders from his kayak and swimmers got to swim the 600 meter swim course and me and Lance after out cool down soak in the lake and John Cobb (look up Cobb Cycling) was there were hanging out watching the swimmers come in. I had 6x1 mile repeats that morning near 5.30 pace and then went to the pre tri clinic out on Lake Tyler to help out and I did the 14 mile bike course to be familiar with it, I let my competiveness get to best of me and took off in the top pack, but I drafted behind my buddy Chauncey so I wouldn't have to work too hard. It was a good time and great seeing new faces taking up the sport and making triathlon popular in the East Texas region. This morning was an intense short bike with 2 x 10km time trials, the first one wasn't that great as I faced some good headwinds the first half and just got over 23 mph, the second time I averaged just over 25.5 mph so I was happy with that since I had some tired legs, then it was a quick run off the bike, managed to hold a 5.50 pace without really slowing down. This week been tough but next week will be a bit more challenging. Then this afternoon, I just hanging out with my bible study group for a social gathering we grilled turkey burgers and watched the Rangers game, now it's time for an ice bath to get ready for a real tough week coming up.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Racing for Scotty's Smile


Triathlon season is well over half way through by now for most of us in the States. I just finished a "recovery week" if you will, I was actually getting over a little bump and scratch I had when I dismounted over my handle bars a week ago and I got out of racing the Clearlake triathlon this past weekend. We all know triathletes and other athletes go through hours and hours of intense discomfort to perform at a higher level come time for race day and in an effort help a fellow co-worker Jami Rabon and Occupational Therapist for East Texas Medical Center in Cedar Creek Lake. Jami's grandson Scott James Brown (8/22/08) was born with cancer known as neuroblastoma, it is an extremely rare case as he didn't respond to the chemo treatment. In short, Scotty's neuroblastoma has metastasized into his bones, marrow, and lymphatic system. You can get more back ground on Baby Scotty by reading the following blog his dad Mike wrote.

Hello everyboby,

Welcome to Baby Scotty. I will start from the beginning to bring you all up to speed. During Julia's pregnancy Scotty was found to have a condition called hydronephrosis. That is a dilation of one kidney, and it was found during a routine ultra sound. Because of this condition there were repeated ultrasounds both in the womb and a few days after birth. During the follow up UT's a mass was noticed above Scotty's right kidney, and it was at first thought to be a hemorrhage caused by the trauma of birth. After the radiologist at children's hospital suggested waiting another three months and looking at it again, our pediatrician suggested we do further testing immediately to rule out the possibility of cancer. A couple additional tests resulted in the official diagnosis. Scotty had a malignant tumor where his right adrenal gland was supposed to be. The cancer is called nueroblastoma.

We met with an oncologist, where we learned that nueroblastoma often goes away all by itself, and that we should expect it to start shrinking and/or calcifying shortly. In fact we were told that many children that are born with the disease are never even diagnosed because they exhibit no symptoms, and the disease goes away on it's own. We also heard several times that if not for the hydronephrosis, a completely unrelated condition, we never would have know he was born with cancer because many cases go away on their own. After consulting experts all over the country, we decided to hold off on any treatment and give it a chance to "go away on it's own." Instead of shrinking, the tumor grew rapidly to roughly the size of a baseball. At six weeks of age Scotty underwent surgery to have it removed.

The removal was thought to be complete success, and the tumor was sent off to be analyzed. Dr. Shimada, the man who wrote the book on nueroblastoma tumor classification, did the pathology himself. The genetic makeup of the tumor was as good as we could have expected. Scotty's cancer was thought to have been completely removed with there being very little chance of recurrence. A follow up catecholamine (adrenal metabolites affected by NB) test showed Scotty's levels to be normal, and we were beginning to think we had caught it early enough and beaten it. Six weeks later during a routine ultra sound, we found many legions in Scotty's liver.

The official word was "there are too many to count" which sounds really bad, but is actually the way stage 4s NB typically presents. This is important because the "s" after the stage 4 classification means "special considerations", and that kept him away from chemotherapy. Chemo is very hard on infants, so we were hoping to keep him from it as long as possible. The 4s classification is not treated because it is common for it to go away all by itself. We were again told to expect the cancer to regress on it's own. We waited, scanning Scotty every few weeks or more. He underwent ultrasound, MRI, MIBG, bone scan, and chemical testing. Most of these test have been cronicled on a facebook cause we used to update people. I am unable to copy all of the announcements from the facebook cause over here, so you have to join the facebook cause to read them if you wish. The short version is this: Scotty's nueroblastoma has metastasized into his bones, marrow, and lymphatic system. He has been reclassified as a stage 4.

So we are starting a Caring bridge website to chronicle Scotty's fight. To this point we have been updating more than seven hundred people via Facebook cause named "baby scotty." This site will parallel the cause on facebook for all those who wish to receive the latest news on our tough little guy. Given the immense power of search engines and the internet, you will find very little information on the disease itself. The information here is pertinent to Scotty's specific conditions, his treatment, and our family. The journal starts at our finding that Scotty had been reclassified as stage four.

To help out Baby Scotty, the most important thing you can do is PRAY and if you have the finances than you send your donations to this website also you can read other journal entries on his progress the lastest news is the little trooper just started walking and has turned 1 year old.

With only 4 triathlons left to compete in I'll send out "gentle" reminders about baby Scotty on his progress and that you should help donate and PRAY!!!



Monday, August 17, 2009

Out for Clearlake Tri

I hate to say it but I am having to pull out of the Clearlake triathlon this weekend due to bike problems and a little bodily injury. I was riding along a newly chip sealed road (yuck! I am hoping they smooth it over) and am riding along thinking this isn't so bad, but I'd rather ride on something smoother so I'm beginning to turn around and as I brake I feel the rear wheel come loose and over the top again I go. It's my second wreck in two weeks, broke the bars in the same spot, so I am opting out for some more crash resistance bars this time. I landed on my elbow but it's ok, I think my bike fell on top of my leg or something and just have some swelling according to my physical therapist I work with.
Other than the weekend was good. Did some hard running Saturday morning before work with 10x1km repeats at 1ok effort and 90 sec rest then later did some jet skiing that was fun that is a good workout, it made my triceps and upper back sore and the next day was spent swiming/fishing with some church mates (after my bike wreck). I found out I really am horrible at fishing with two girls caught more fish than I. I did have one fish but it fell off the hook before I could reel it up so I didn't count that one. Also Tabitha came over and surprised me this weekend. Also we got a new addition to the household, this kitten who we named "Biscuit" has been hanging around on the front porch as you can see from the picture above.
I'm not racing Clearlake this weekend. I'll be taking this week easy letting my leg heal and I still got a big hole in my heal from that blister from San Angelo that I am still trying to get over, then it will be back on the grind then the Rose City triathlon is next Sept 12.

Friday, August 14, 2009

IRP Wool Capital: SMW Region Championships

This past weekend me and Tabitha made the long trek to San Angelo for a Jack Weiss race from Ironhead Race Productions, it was a long way to go but it was the Regional Championships which means points are worth a bit more than they usually are and can put you in higher rankings if you do well, which really means nothing at all. It wasn't a large field but a highly competitive field, as it brought some top age group athletes from the region to the race. Brady O' Bryan a UCLA student from Flint, which is by Tyler, Tx, destroyed the race with fast times in every event.

I on the other hand finished the 1500m swim in 25.30, which is so far my best non wetsuit swim. I thought I was swimming better than but I guess not. The course was out and back and coming back the sun was in our face. I could see swimmers on my right but I still veered off and cross over on the other side when I looked up and finally saw a bouy almost in front of my face I decided I better get back over. I finished 28th out of the water. Somehow I made through T2 with fastest time, not sure how I did that with a guy talking next to me. I had my best ever bike split of 25.05 mph for 40k which put me at 59.38 for 5th fastest bike. The course was hilly and windy, especially heading out, coming back we had the aide of a tailwind but it was still hilly with a long climb right after the turn around. On the run I had wondered if I biked too hard but I think I did it just right. The course was on the infamous road "The Dirt Road from Hell" at the beginning of the run I was like this isn't so bad, but then you know when you're in hell. The footing was sandy and rocky the course was hilly and it was hot by then. You can see from my feet above in the picture what it did to my heels. ouch!!! I'm still trying to get over that. I had the 3rd fastest run time on a slow course of 38.43. The end result was 6th overall in 2:04.48.

I'd like to thank the people who helped me out Tabitha, Brent, Stephen, Colonel's Bike Shop, and Jesus Christ for the ability!!! Next weekend I'll be racing in Clearlake which is South of Houston, a little furthur than I orginally thought but it should be a good time.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Schedule, Bike Wreck, and Outings

Here is the rest of my schedule for this season. The second half of this season I am racing for a little year old boy Scotty from Colorado who has neuroblastoma in every bone of his body and his survival rate is only 20-30%. I work with his grandma Jamie who is occupational therapist assitance. Stay tuned as I will release more info on him in the upcoming weeks.

August 9 Wool Capital: 2009 South Midwest Regional Intermediate Championships - San Angelo
August 22 Clearlake Tri- Clearlake (just south of Houston)
Sept 12 Rose City- Lake Tyler
Sept 27 Stonebridge sprint: 2009 Texas State Championships -McKinney (DFW)
Oct 11 Lifetime Fitness Toyota U.S. Open- Dallas
Nov 8 Iron Star 70.3 - Montgomery (Lake Conroe)

Well this morning I was out early on my bike and long story short I had a water bottle in my right hand and then hit the front brake and flew over the bike and damaged my right brake lever, so hopefully the guys at Colonel's Bikes can fix me up so I can race next weekend, if not I'll have to borrow a bike I might not be used to or not race at all.

If your ever in the Cedar Creek Lake area stop at McClain's Restaurant in Seven Points. Reminded me of a 1950's diner. Turns out Mrs. McClain bought the place in the late 70's, previously known as Fred's. Me and Tab ate grilled chicken livers the other night.

This is at the Botanical Gardens in Fort Worth we were out walking the trails and Tab had a little trouble getting past the fallen tree.

This is last night during a down pour, it looked like twilight.