Sunday, November 4, 2012

Tri Tyler Half-Ironman

I was excited to get to go back to Tyler a few weeks ago for the inaugural half ironman that Steve Farris was race directing. This is where I had spent a few years finishing my undergraduate degree and running cross country at the University of Texas at Tyler. 

I traveled with my buddy Lance. We had a nice early dinner at the Olive Garden that night that was in walking distance from the host hotel. 

Race morning I had a nice swim start with the pro/elite wave and I was in 'a' pack, but that lasted maybe 50 meters at most and I was trailing off the back. I knew I was in the back with two others as the kayak was following to make sure we were ok. It was J.T., Chris, and I for the remaining three to exit the water. J.T. was leading us but at the final stretch he started going waaay to the right. Chris had passed me and I jumped on his feet and I passed him exiting the water and JT was chasing us by then. Chris would thank me later on twitter for giving him a pedicure while I was drafting behind him. I finished the swim in 31 minutes and change. It's a new PR swim for me, but a lot of guy's set "PR's" so my guess is the course must have been somewhat short or all other courses have been long. 

Swim Exit. Photo Courtesy of Simpson's Photography.
I made a quick transition and was on my bike however my legs would not respond for most of the bike, including the flat parts. I spent a good time of the first portion chasing a guy who flew by me in the age group race and trying to hold off Chris who was going near the same pace as me but gradually getting closer. In the back of my mind, I was wishing Chris would hurry up and catch me so I could get in on his the "legal draft" zone.  Well, Chris did ended passing me up during that time I was in a "low moment" and rode by me like I was sitting still. So I rode another 20 miles trying to keep him in sight and slowly reeled him back in and we would come in pretty close together after that. I personally, didn't think the bike portion was that bad until the last 15 miles when all it was was short steep hills up and down. Coming off the bike in just over 2:28 preparing to dismount I caught a cramp in my adductors or inner thighs. I knew I might be in trouble, but I was going to try to push on.

Coming into T2 and ready to get off the bike. 

Heading out on the run my legs didn't have near as the amount of spring and turnover I had in my legs at Branson. I was determined to continue on. However through many low moments out on the run course and trying to press on it wasn't working. The run course is quite challenging and even more challenging when coming off that bike course. 

Beginning of the run.
I couldn't wait to finish this race because I knew what I had to look forward to. I was walking out on the run course and was thinking if I could just hurry up and run a fast pace I could finish sooner. The ending to any half-ironman course is a pretty site, but even better when you have your parents, and Lance (the one that didn't dope). It was such a great ending to a challenging season.

With my Dad and Mom and I couldn't wait to crack open and start drinking that Coca-Cola.

After the race I may have set a record for the most burgers (3) and soft drinks (5+) combined in one day. The past two weeks I have been taking sometime off to recover, but I'm eager to start working on my weaknesses. The season challenged me in more ways than I expected, but I found out just how resilient and determined I can be when times get tough. With that said, while most of my races early season I either did poorly or DNS, I was able to pull myself together and put a few good races together towards the end of the season. Well, except this one of course.

Thank you to my parent and Lance for all coming out to the race and supporting me. My Coach Brent Poulsen from Revolution MultiSport and some cool sponsors with Tri It Wear and Wheaties. Thanks be to God for keeping me safe out there and getting me back to the finish line.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Five55 Series October

Result: 1st OA

Warming-up with a duck chase. 
I've often heard you shouldn't try anything new leading up to a race. After 5 years of racing triathlon I thought I would try something different and chase ducks for a warmup. I thought I would start with ducks since they seem to be slower than chickens. Rocky chased chickens, remember. If it worked for Rocky then just maybe it would work for me too. 

I never caught the duck.
Game face is on.
This was the last of the Five55 Series (October 5th) that have been since April. Since this was the last one, I was going to make sure I smashed this one hard. As you can tell in the photo was I was ready to go minus that I still didn't have my swim cap on.

There were some quick swimmers that showed up this time. I tried to take off as fast as I could and catch a draft on Lee Webber's but that didn't happen. I had a decent swim this time if your comparing results, I was swimming as hard as I could and leaving nothing behind, but I did have to stop midway in the swim, my goggles weren't set right and and I couldn't see anything.                                              

Finishing the October Five55 Series 5k Run 17:12

I normally wouldn't have worn a speed suit for this but since this was the last one for the year and the swim is NOT 500 Meters, it gets longer each month. I figured I would swim faster but not lose much time in T1. I was wrong, again. My zipper got hung up and I couldn't get out. I debated whether or not if I should just do the 5k in my speed suit, but by then I had just worked it off. 

I had forgotten my Garmin watch too. The run was totally by feel. I came out of T1 one swinging. I wish I had known what I ran that first mile in. I finally took over the lead just half way through the 5k. I had caught Lee and he told me, "Don't let the speedo guy beat you." After seeing the final results I blitzed the 5k run in 17:12. 

The Five55 Series has been fun as I have been able to see my speed improve as the months went along.  Although the swim kept getting "longer" I found myself closer and closer near the front and just good open water practice with a group that you don't get everyday. Thank you, Juan for putting all of this together. Thank you to Coach Brent and rEvolution Multisport for the phenomenal support and Coaching this year. Also, to Wheaties for helping me get fueled first thing in the mornings. Most importantly, for Jesus Christ. HE has truly blessed me and I don't understand how he does it all.

This week I am getting ready to back to where I went to college and close out the season with the Tri Tyler Half Ironman. I'm racing in a competitive professional/amateur elite field. I am extremely excited about this.

Friday, October 12, 2012

The Houston Triathlon, turned Aquathon

Result: 8th OA (Pro/Amateur Elite)

Rain, Rain all weekend. This is what I our drive to the Houston Triathlon looked like on Saturday morning. Due to these circumstances the city would later urge the race director to cancel the cycling portion to an aquathon.  All of the Five55 Series races would later pay off on Sunday morning, being new to aquathoning this year. 

The week of the race I had just raced Branson and I was struggling all week to get out of bed and get my workouts done. A Half-Ironman and over 30 hours of driving will take it out of ya. The snooze button and I became well aquainted.  By the end of the week I was feeling recovered and ready to go. 

Freebirds stop for lunch in College Station
Here am I and and one of my all time favorite places for some pre race lunch Saturday afternoon. Tiffany and I had stopped at Freebirds in College Station (AKA Aggie Land) to grab a bite to eat.

We couldn't have had better hosts. The Storey Family were fantastic hosts for our home stay. We went out to eat and I had a delicious 8" chicken pizza as my pre-race dinner for the first time. Plus we got to see the joys of parenting. Doug was trying to explain to his typical teenager son, Connor how to use the remote control with the cable and Connor walks out while Doug is still explaining. 

The water was 79 degrees, a non wetsuit swim. There were approximately 60 athletes in my that included the pro/elite amateur/ and relay. I got boxed in right from the start and had a very poor start. I came out of the water in 24:37. I still have a long ways to go as the top guys were out in 21 or under. 

Exiting the1500m swim. 

After all, the Five 55 series races have been paying off as I knew what to expect how it would feel running after swimming as I was kind-of used to it.  T1 one substansially long, maybe near a half-mile, but the good thing it gave me time to find my legs and get ready run fast. 

Once I got my shoes on and headed out. I didn't feel too great the first mile. I was thinking, "I'm too tired, I just raced Branson". "Maybe, I should just cruise this one." Somewhere along the way I began to feel good. I kept taking it one step at a time or one mile at a time. I split the first mile (once I started my watch) in 5:38. The run course wasn't too bad it was out and back with a loop went through twice with some little twist and turns that made it fun. After mile 2 (5:41), I found myself getting faster and faster. Miles 3-4 were exactly 5:36. At mile 4, I told my self this it if you want to try to pick off any more people.  I split the last two miles both at 5:33. This led to a negative split in a triathlon run. This might have been my first time to do this.  My 10k time was 35:19. 

Coming into the finish, repping my Revolution Multisport suit. 
View of the finish line with red carpet and American flags made a nice touch.

 I had a great time in Houston at the Houston Triathlon and with our fun hosts, Doug, Karen, Connor and Jake. A big thanks to Aaron Palian for putting on the best triathlons. I thank God that I am blessed with the abilities with supportive friends. Next, I'll do my best to wrap up the Five55 Series in Las Colinas Friday night (October 5th) on tired legs.

Thanks for reading!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Ironman Branson 70.3

Result: 12th OA
2nd Amateur
1st 25-29 AG

View from the lake at the top of a hill during my race prep run.
It's been a challenging year with triathlon as my health and fitness is concerned. We know Texas 70.3 didn't over so well, then just a couple of weeks later I ended up breaking my arm on a recovery ride of all things. A couple of months after breaking my arm I somehow caught pneumonia. However, I have steadily just been doing work. 

My mom went with me to Branson, MO. The first night in Branson....Continue reading here

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Five55 Series Dallas - September

Result: 1st OA

This week I competed in the September Series event of the Five55 Series. This is comprised of Austin, San Antonio, and Dallas. The events main sponsor is Subaru and at the November party in Austin one lucky winner will win a Subaru. There has been plenty of opportunities for everyone to get their name in for the Subaru. I'm crossing my fingers that it is me.

This past Wednesday, September 5th the temp was 102 degrees. It was smokin' hot. If this was an Ironman branded race it would the rest here on BLOGGER FIT your source for Dallas Fort Worth Endurance news.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Aperture Ashley Photography

Move over Kenny Chesney...there is a new kid in town. Just kidding. Recently, I had the privilege to work with aspiring portrait photographer Ashley Johnson. These photos were shot in Fort Worth at the T&P Tavern and the world famous Stockyards. It was a fun shoot as it challenged some of my abilities, especially the first photo that is shown as it was a balancing act.

If you would like to know more about pricing and booking, email Ashley at

Friday, July 13, 2012

Dallas 555 Series July


The Five55 Series Dallas' premier stroke and stride series started it's fourth round for the year. The spectators (see above) were out in full force. 

Best race announcer ever
The race announcer made sure to let the guys know I won last I won last month, then guys started moving closer and closer to me before the start in hopes of jumping on my feet, which isn't that hard to do.

Five55 Swim Start
I got off to a good start as I was able to jump out front. Not much contact in this swim, I believe I was 5th or so out of the water and was starting to gain on people that had previously pulled away. 

Starting the run down
My legs felt much better this go around than they did last month. I jumped out to a...continue reading here.

Thanks for reading!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Ironman 70.3 Buffalo Springs

It was a tough weekend of racing. It didn’t go as planned, but I had great company with my buddy and mentor Todd Hamilton who made the trip waaay more fun. I can’t forget his wife who made some awesome food and kept our bellies full. Todd did good there. I met Todd Friday night for a big dinner then we hung out with his 11 year-old son Luke who’s an aspiring triathlete himself and we played this guessing game “What am I?”Then we hung out in the pool a little bit before my 8pm bed time.

Relaxing in the pool Friday night before sleep time.
Saturday morning came early as we had to get ready and hit the road. I had an easy 30 minute run to do and it was pitch black around his neighborhood, but I was going super slow anyways, it didn’t matter. Then his wife again, did an excellent job and made us another excellent meal. On our way to Lubbock we stopped by the Lake Mineral Wells State Park and I did a very short swim out and back. The water very calm....continue reading here.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Dallas 555 Series - June

Swim Exit @ 555 Series in Las Colinas

As some of you know just under 2 months ago, I broke the radial head in my forearm when I veered off the Trinity Trail and I didn't quite make it back on when my tires clipped the side of the pavement. I had minor road rash but my arm hurt!!! I got back on my bike and was able to ride to the house. It wasn't long later my arm was swollen up my elbow and down into my fingers. It was worse than I originally thought it was I went to the orthopedic the next day and it was confirmed that I had fractured it and had just missed surgery!  This was just a week before the Kemah Tri that I was forced to miss. The main concern was if I was going to be able to gain full range of motion back with full extension and external rotation. With Dr. Steven Meyers diagnosis and his advice,  my Coach Brent Poulsen from rEvolution Multisport, and lots of Faith we were able to come up with an aggressive game plan to get me back in the game. It wasn't long before I was attempting to swim and back in the weight room with a broken arm and slowly gaining range of motion. I appreciate everyone who reached out to me with concern during this time.

June 5th I was just able to race in the 555 Series and to start knocking off the rust. This is a series that started in April and goes through October on the 5th of every month consisting of a 500m swim and 5k run with Dallas, San Antonio, and Austin.  I lined up on the far right side to keep everyone else on my left side away from my Arm. I was  next to David Balis who had won the last two. He is a way better swimmer than I gave him credit far initially, he was gone as soon as we took off. He managed to come out of the water in just over 8 minutes and I had just come out of the water in 10 minutes. We had all assumed the swim was quite long. I came out of the water in 10th of the men. With the fastest transition I passed 5 people going out onto the run. It took me a while to find my legs, which means I still got a lot of work to do. I opened the 5k a slow pedestrian 6 minute mile, when I was going for 5:30's. My legs felt so wobbly, I thought I they were going to give in and I would fall. By the first mile I wanted to drop out, I couldn't even seen anybody else in front, but somehow I kept digging and it wasn't long until the turn around and I was in 3rd and chasing down the top swimmers Adam Wilk and Balis. Within 2.2 miles I caught Balis and finished the 2nd mile in 5:42. I was getting faster on the last mile holding just under 5:30, but with a half-mile to go I put my effort on cruise control to start working on recovery for the next day finishing the 5k in 18:02.

Next week - ready or not I'll be racing in my fourth go around at Buffalo Springs 70.3 in Lubbock. It's one of the hardest 70.3's on the circuit due to the heat, wind, and hills. Last year was a death march as it reached 114 degrees.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Texas A&M Commerce University Graduation

Texas A&M Commerce University Doctorate and Masters Class of 2012

The day finally came. The day I thought would never come in the beginning and even when I was half way through. I finally did finishmy masters degree in business administration with Texas A&M Commerce.  I'm humbled by this achievement by the massive amount of work, focus, and faith it took to get it done and all my friends who helped me and supported me through the last four years. I thank you all. 

The Sam Rayburn Statue
In the line up

Dr. John Wesley Carlos

During the graduation Ceremony it was an honor to hear the speech  and shake the hand of  Dr. John Wesley Carlos, from Harlem, New York, who attended East Texas State University, now known as Texas A&M Commerce University. Carlos was led East Texas to their Lone Star conference championship in 1967 with wins in the 100, 200, and 4x400m relay. By1968 he was the bronze medalists in the 200 meters and he was pronounced the World's Fastest Man in 1969. Currently he is involved in humanitarian equality and has a booked "The John Carlos Story". 
"Black Power" 

After graduation it was a followed by a few more pictures and a big dinner Mi Cocina! 

Lance and I
Me w/ my Dad & Mom

Sunday my parents and I took a stroll downtown to see to see the Water Gardens while they were here. 

Thanks for reading!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Tough Road

I've been on the Tough Road a few times. I was an injury prone runner in high school sticking my legs in a bucket of freezing ice water after practice every day to live for the next meet. I got over that by the time I started college.  Post college I got over metatarsal stress fractures. Then I entered the triathlon world.

I have had my share of bicycle wrecks. I once hit and flipped over a car with a nice tailwind pushing me and walked away from it from no serious injuries. I've been over top of the bars and I've had the bike slide out from under me. The strangest one is when a deer ran across the highway in Eustace, Tx, and me of all people happen to hit it. I walked away from each of these injury free minus the road rash with nothing serious.

Yesterday on a recovery ride of all things, I couldn't wait to get back home. I was coming back into downtown on the Trinity Trails and accidently veered of the trail. I tried to get back on and missed. My tires hit the side of the trail and down I went, pretty hard for just tootin' around. I fell hard on my right arm. Completely a rookie mistake.

Today I visited the sports doctor and He diagnosed it as a radial head stress fracture and I got quite a bit of  swelling around my elbow. It looks like I am out of commission 4 weeks minimum, at least for the swimming and cycling. I'll be substituting it with therapy and rehab.  I will be aggressive as much as I can so I can get back out there. I was looking forward racing the Kemah Triathlon but there's no chance of that happening now. I have a lot to be thankful for and glad it wasn't anything worse. Overcoming these set backs is nothing new for me.  My goal is get over this and get ready for Buffalo Springs 70.3.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Tour de Fort Worth the Stock Yards

I took another Tour de Fort Worth this afternoon on my own. With the Arts Fest taking place downtown it was hard to ride a bike through that area, so I rode off to the famous Fort Worth Stock Yards of course.

Everything was going fine on the way back as I was cruising on the Trinity Trails then I veered off the trail and trying to get back on I went down and banged my elbow up---with that said I'm not sure what Kemah next week will mean for me yet.