Monday, October 12, 2009

Toyota U.S. Open Dallas Triathlon

I met Hunter Kemper, 3x Olympian triathlete (2000,2004,2008).
(also an Orbea rider).

Matt Reed and Sarah Haskins win the Toyota Cup Series.

Sarah Haskins made $20,000 for winning the series she was 2nd in Dallas.

Sarah Haskins and Matt Reed on the big screen with the Toyota Cup.

Top 3 Male and Female Toyota Cup winners
Greg Bennett was 2nd in Dallas and 2nd in the series, but would have won, but had a collision with a car on his bike in early August and missed Chicago.

Matty Reed, overall winner today and overall winner of the series made $20,000 for the win and $20,000 for 1st overall in the series.

I met with Greg Bennett afterwards, he rides the same bike as I.

What a weekend it was in Dallas for the 2009 Toyota U.S. Open triathlon. This was the end of the Toyota cup series, it was stacked with some of the best triathletes in the sport. I thought the expo was really cool with a variety of different vendors handing out free samples and selling some discounted clothes and accessories. 3X Olympian Hunter Kemper was also at the Toyota booth when I was there giving away some cool prizes, my buddy Mark from Rowlett, Tx won a $150 value of Espira racing flats. I got to go up to Hunter afterwards and he signed my U.S. Open shirt and a card with his picture on it, he was a super cool dude.

For the weather in Texas it was a little on the chilly side this time of year. It was about 55 degrees the morning of the race and on top of that it was wet and rainy which is not good when your about do a 40k bike across Dallas as hard as you can. That morning we had to drop stuff off at transition 2 since it was a point to point triathlon and then take a shuttle bus to Joe Poole Lake in Grand Prarie. We had to wait about 45 minutes for a bus since they were short on buses, this later caused the triathlon to be pushed back 15 minutes.

Finally, we are about to start the swim. Conditions of the water are 70 degrees which choppy conditions, especially when coming back to the North direction. My start wasn't as well as I wanted but I finally settled in with a couple of other swimmers and got behind them trying to draft but the guys were kicking so hard creating a lot of tolerance I just pulled up next to them instead. On the far side of the course I didn't sight at all and while I focused on staying close to the guy next to me and let him to the navigating. On the way back to shore I lost him somewhere ended up swimming most of the way after that by myself. The swim was slower than I expected to be out of the water in 26.40. Stripped off the wetsuit and headed on the bike in 55 degree weather.

On the bike I didn't feel as cold as I thought I would. But the road conditions for this race was horrible, there were huge cracks in the road and it was bumpy with several potholes you had to be careful of. Not to mention the beginning of the course was fairly hilly and slick. I managed to hit all time low of average speed this season. There times when I thought I had a flat, I almost got off to check, but I didn't. I was like I'll know for sure when I can't pedal anymore. Turns out it was from the rough roads. Going downhill in the rain around 30 mph was kinda scary and I also hit a pothole where my hands slipped off the aerobars but I was able to recover quick and not crash. So somewhere around this point it came important to stay upright on the bike and not have a bad a crash. I suppose due the cold weather I was also having calf cramps and would have to coast and stretch out my legs. The good thing is nobody passed me on the bike except at the very end a guy passed me back but I let him go as we were about to be done and I knew it was about time to get out of the shoes. I managed a 21.8 mph average. Definitely not impressed with this.

Coming into T2 my right calf cramped up really bad trying to get my shoe on, so I had to sit down and do it while this one guy was getting away from me, I got my shoe back on and caught him out at the beginning of the run and I was in the back of a 4 man pack. After I got everything under control after take a gel I worked my away to the front of our pack and took off from there. We headed out on the Katy trail and it seemed to be a long gradual hill all the way out and downhill on the way back. I was able to make up sometime on the way back. This was the best run I've had off the bike in awhile it hurt pretty bad but managed to run a 35.44 10k (6.2 miles).

At the post race food table 2nd place finisher and 3x Toyota Cup winner Greg Bennett came up and asked me how I did. I was said something like "Hey, your Greg Bennett." He was hit by a car back in August the article was on He is doing quite well. He would have won the series but missed the race in Chicago due to the crash. After I got my camera out of T2 I saw him again later we posed for a picture and he signed my finishers towel.

Thanks especially for the Good Lord keeping me safe out there and for Mark Mulch for letting me crash at his house in Rowlett. Also be in prayer for Mark's buddy on the Multisport Ministries team Jeremy Williford that was in a bad crash. Not sure what happened but a police report had to be filed. He suffered muliple fractures in the pelvis, left leg, 4 broken ribs and 12 staples in the head.

The results for me came out to be 53rd OA/639 finishers and in the Elite Local Division I was 16th OA/36 finishers.

I am staring a big build now for the half iron triathlon called Iron Star outside of Houston, Tx on November 8th for and Lord willing go out with a bang. I will hopefully learn how to swim by then. This weekend I'm training with my coach and pro triathlete Brent Poulsen, so I know that will be a tough session. I am also hoping the sunshine will come out and dry up the roads too.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

US Open Live this Sunday!

This Sunday I am competing in the U.S. Open in Dallas in the Elite Local Division it will be shown live on Sunday morning on It's starts with the pro's at 7:30 a.m. , so if your up you need to check it out. It should be a real good race since this is the end of the Lifetime Fitness U.S. Open Series this year.

Training is going well and I've managed to stay flu free so far. Sunday morning was a 3 hour ride with some pace work in there, in the pouring rain once it became daylight, followed by a 4o minute run at goal pace (6.05 avg./mile). It literally poured buckets, but I enjoyed, I couldn't help but laugh when I felt the rain at it's strongest, it was great, it felt liberating. I've also been washing my hands every chance I get to to avoid the spread of germs, the ER at the hospital that I have to walk through has been packed for weeks now. I got my flu shot this week, the nurse said I was a bleeder. My arm is a little sore but not too bad. I also got a new training tool I've been playing around with some this week, the Garmin 310xt. The rest of this week has been easy with some short burst of race pace work. I am pumped about the weekend in Dallas.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

China Style Baby!

The weather is finally cool us for us endurance athletes. This morning was a cool and crisp, perfect running weather. Today was 90 minute progression run around the neighborhood. I ran with Josh's Garmin 305 and got in 5 miles the last 30 minutes, finishing the whole run with 13.7 miles. I got lot of "weird" reactions from GBC drivers out here, especially when I was hammering it out the last 30 minutes at a 5:50-6.15 mile pace.

From the pictures above this Chinese lady Pat, that works out at the ETMC Olympic Center, gave me some Chinese tofu to try out and some spicy garlic sauce to put on top of it. Tofu as you may know taste bland, but the garlic sauce made a big difference in taste. It was delicious but was freakin' spicy. I didn't think I had that much congestion but my nose started clearing immediately as I took the first bite. I ate the whole thing, 5 servings x 150 calories.

Tomorrow is a long bike and a 70.3 goal pace run off the bike, followed later by a swim. I am sure there is going to be studying and attending church in there as well. The training is coming a long well and I believe I am coming into peak form at the right time and if everything goes well I should have an awesome 70.3 race next month that Brent Poulsen designs for me. In a couple of weeks I should get a weekend or two training with him. I'll try and get some sick pictures of us hammering it out. I'll be the one crying in the background, but before that next week I'll be focusing on getting ready for the Toyota U.S. Open in Dallas. I'll be racing with the elite locals.