Ironman New Zealand: Dissapointment and Future

I went into Ironman New Zealand feeling like a D list celebrity . I had done a few things in racing I  was happy with in the past, but nothing recent. I still think I’m awesome and capable, but nobody is concerned when my name is on the start list now. It is a rough life people! Ironman New Zealand was going to be my new start, to reveal to everybody that I’m the athlete I think I’m capable of. I wanted top 4 or I was done.

This post is a very tough one to write, because in Ironman every second really does count. Think about it. If you aim to beat the old you by one second over every minute and you race over 10 hours…That’s 10 minutes. I can’t stop going over situations and how I maybe should have reacted. But it is all gone now. The prep was the best I had ever done. However, on that day, I just was not good enough to deliver what I still think I’m capable of (that is what hurts and haunts me the most). Not sure what is next. But I have had a hell of great ride the past 7 years. I lived to fullest, trained bloody hard, raced like crap, but met some the greatest people who I call friends today through this triathlon journey. We really do have great community within the sport.

Huge congrats to Cameron Brown and Meredith Kessler for their dominating performances. These are two top notch athletes who I have been grateful to know and call friends. Also want to give a huge thanks to Terenzo and Kelly Bozzone for their hospitality during our training camp. You guys are amazing! The training camp meant more to me than you know. Thanks T.

So instead of a report I’m just going say what I learned after realizing I wasn’t going to meet my goal. You might even take some of this with you heading into your next Ironman. I’m going to take these lessons to life.

At  150km on the bike and around 30-35km on the run, you begin to suffer or question yourself about why they are doing this. This is when you enter into “the darkness”.  This is were your character is really tested. You have to be able to find away to get out of this or it can ruin your race. You can’t stop, you have to continue hurting until you finish the job. You get to choice what you think and believe on course. It can be very easy to give up and not give your best when things are going your way. Most people in life respect and notice those who get done during the tough times.

Bad races are tough to handle for everybody. I might have even got a bunch of sun screen in my eyes because some tears were shed. However, once you finish the race and arrive home with nobody around you, you are going to have to look at yourself and answer to yourself…

Did I honestly give it all and fight as hard as I could despite everything going wrong?

Even though the race went south, I pushed as hard as I could. When the watts were 140-150, I kept turning the pedals. When fell on the run, I kept one foot in front of another. The last 1.5km took me 45 minutes to complete. With 10-15 people walking and cheering me all the way to the finish.

If you can say you focused on yourself and your race,

If you can say you chased every second to the best of your ability,

If you can say you stuck it out despite everything going against you……You have done a bloody good job







New Zealand Training Camp: DONE

My intent was to post more on this training camp, as I love it when other athletes post about training camps. After the first few days of training I was pretty smashed and just couldn’t muster up the energy to post. Really bummed I didn’t take pics, but with the volume coming down the next few weeks, I should have the energy.

The training camp was 2 blocks of 7 days on/3 days recover. I needed every second of the 3 days off to get ready for the second block. The camps was more Phil Maffetone meets Arthur Lydiard. Lots and lots and lots of training and pretty low intensity. There would be one run session a week that would smacked pretty hard, but every thing else was bigger duration at aerobic intensity.

We had some great sessions in block 2 being able to take big chucks of time out of previous efforts done in block one at same heart rate values. The goal in block two was just get in the time while keep our HRV stable which was done. Now with the final four weeks coming up there will be selected days were the goal will be to smack the hell out the session.

HRV for week


So here is a small recap of the past 7 days.

What we looked like post training

big days 001

My favorite ride down into Piha

big days 007

Great climb up Lone Kauri Rd

big days 012

Little piggy loving his custard square

big days 003

Our twice weekly 30-35km running route

sun run

My favorite burger joint, Burger Fuel


Off to Christchurch tomorrow for the final few weeks. Lindsay arrives on the 20 and I can’t wait. I have missed that sexy piece of work.


New Zealand: Camp Days 1 and 2

After a great few days catching up with my Dad it was time to head up north to North Shore to move in with Terenzo and Kelly Bozzone. I was a little worried as I managed to jack up my back pretty good on Saturday and had to postpone the official start date. Multiple foundation sessions during the day had me feeling mobile and ready to start laying down some good foundation miles.

Sunday, Jan 25

RUN: 2hr 30 min

Early morning start as we tackled the long run of the week. This was a very hilly 2.5 hr run heading north up the coast. Pace was nice and casual with everybody gently turning the screws on the way home. Very solid run today. Total came out to 30km.

sun run

Bike: 2hr recovery spin.

Nothing exciting here. Felt horrible the first hour then the legs started to freshen up some.

Swim:  3km open water swim.

I had forget my battery charger for my watch and didn’t want it going flat so no cool GPS view of the swim

We capped the day off at my favorite burger place of all time, Burger Fuel


Monday, Jan 26

Ride: 5hr 45 min

This ride moves into number two behind riding stage 20 of 2013 Tour. We rode West to Piha beach through the legendary Waitakere Ranges that Arthur Lydiard used to train many of his champions. It was just no stop climbing. We ended up at Piha for a coke and chocolate.

piha 001 piha 003

The ride ended up being 5 hrs 45 minutes and change with over 11,000 ft of climbing. Real strength endurance ride.


RUN: 60 min brick.

I was skipping on calories hoping to drop a few lbs and failed to consume enough calories heading into the run. I ended up walking the last 20 minutes. Made a trip to supermarket to make sure this mistake never happen again. Tomorrow will be a new day full of calories. We implemented a rule today while riding. Every 4 hrs of training is rewarded with treat of your picking. Today we ended up going with a cadbury marvelous bar.

Strength: 60 min

Great session with world class surgeon and athlete, Matt Brick. Session was done at his place with circuits all through his yard. Great session

New Zealand Training

After a rough few years I was looking to hangup my shoes and call it career  until I had a chat with my coach who convinced me to head down to New Zealand for one more shot at revitalizing my career. Being “pro” is tough when things don’t go as planned and if you aren’t accomplishing goals and making money, devoting all the time to training becomes tough and stressful. I still have the desire to put in the work for Ironman New Zealand and the race will give me closure since the first event I ever raced was the weet-bix kiwi kids triathlon. So here is my journey to Ironman New Zealand.

Ironman New Zealand 2015

The flight over to New Zealand is always a breeze on Air New Zealand. The staff and environment on the plane is always top notch and you’re landing before you know it. The problem starting arising after 20 minutes of waiting for my luggage.  I noticed my bike box had not been pushed through. I wondered over to baggage services to file my claim and see if I could at least get a location on my bike. When the agent informed me there was no data on my baggage I became worried. My layover in LAX was 11 hours and it shouldn’t have been too hard for my US carrier to scan my items and have it lined up ready for loading onto my flight.

I wasn’t to keen to hang around the airport and filed my claim and took off on my home. We were on the phones for 2 hours and nobody had any idea where my bike was. The last known location was in Austin! Too make my long story short. None of my bags were scanned, nobody knew how my first bag even made the trip.  My bike had made the journey but was placed in transit in Auckland thinking it was heading outbound on a soon to be departing flight. Always makes me a little annoyed you have to pay a large fee for bikes when this occurs. It’s for that reason I have been insuring my bike with Velosurance.

Once I knew my bike was here and was en route, I was able to calm down some and get ready for a run with my old man in the Hunua Ranges.



Was a spectacular 2hr run in the bush. My dad told me to try the “challenge trail” which looked like a fun run that would probably take 35-40 minutes to complete. My dad secretly held back the details of the route. Lets just say 4.3km took me close to 30-40 minutes to complete! The goal of two hours was accomplished.

This morning we headed out for a nice swim at the local 50m pool. Not flash like the University of Texas pool I normally swim in, but just awesome that pools are set up year round at 50m. I do love my walls, but really enjoy 50m.


Swim Set:


x4 (150 Free/50 stroke)

Main Set:

400 band only/6×50 fly

300 band only/6×50 fly

200 band only/6×50 fly

100 band only/ 6×50 fly



Now off to execute my route I plotted from Strava heatmaps. Until next update


Pro Diaries-Day 8


I normally swim later in the evening as if rain does come through, it is around noon. So I like to get in a solid ride in the morning than risk not being able to ride later due to rain. So this evening when I arrived at the pool, it was packed with squads, and only two lanes open for lap swimming. Problem was that there were already 3 people in each lane swimming at a pace that would irritate us all if I jumped in. The lanes opened up at 19:00 but I was already pretty tired so I headed home and hung out on the couch and ran some errands for the wife.

Made up for lack of swim with a longer core routine.

BIKE: 4hrs w/15×5′ hill repeats

I really wanted to just ride a hilly route today. I have been lots of simple out and back routes since we arrived and I wanted to switch it up with a big loop. I Google mapped my course and off I went on a very challenging hilly course. After 5,000ft of climbing I reached this road. This awesome I though to myself. These are similar roads I watched the Colorado Pro tour ride over. This is going to be a blast.


15 minutes later the road turned into conditions I really didn’t want to ride my Cervelo through. The dirt turned a few inches deep, the rocks became bigger, plus there was a 16% descent. I decided it is was probably in my best interest to turn around.


The ride ended up being a total climbing gain of 9,543 ft and I did manage to get in all my efforts along the road. Ended up being a blessing in disguise as the trip back kept me further south than the planned route. The planned route experienced a pretty nasty downfall of rain. Would have been pretty chilly at elevation and no base clothing.

RUN: 60 minutes at high turnover 

The rain made the run interesting with what felt like 5 inches on my heel. The pace is slowly picking up at the HR zones I have selected which is nice, but bummed to not be able to really get after some session as we depart on Sunday morning.



Every night ends the same with my Enduropack and Drip Drop.  EnduroPacks makes a great liquid multi-vitmain, glutamine, and amino acid patch that all facilitate a faster recovery.

This is my second time training at altitude and you realize very quickly how fast you dehydrate. Drip Drop keeps my hydration levels optimal during and after training.


Pro Diaries- Day 4,5,6,7


Light recovery day which consisted of 4k swim, 40 min spin on the bike, 20 min easy run, and 45′ on the TRX.


Another light day in prep for a tough session on Sunday. Took today to spend time with my better half. We drove down the road and went on a pretty amazing hike with greats view at Devils Hat.


SUNDAY- Day 6 (4 hr ride with 90km TT+ 80 min light run)

After a very disappointing ride at Lake Stevens 70.3, I needed to nail a 90km Tim Trial to prove to myself I could ride a bike. Mentally this was going to be a tough, tough session riding solo on Sunday. The ride started at 6200ft and climbed up to 7300ft and there was a bit of wind. It was very nerve racking pushing the start button, but it had to be done. There was a goal wattage to be maintained, but I quickly realized that the acclimation to the altitude was not 100% and that wattage was too tough. I blocked the wattage and rode as hard as I could. I ended up beating my time from Lake Stevens by 11 minutes at elevation. I will take this ride as a victory, a very painful victory .



Swim: 4km swim with nothing special

Bike: 2 hr ride with rolling terrain. More of long easy flush ride. This week is going to be big on the bike with the goal of 22 hours of riding. I have been using map my ride and strava to map out and plot my courses this week. Should be very interesting.

Run: 40 min run with 4x1km strong efforts.

Strength: 45 minutes on the TRX

Today was the first day there was a fair amount of fatigue. My HRV finally started to head south, and my Polar V800 was letting me know the efforts from yesterday were going to take a wee while to recover from. The shots below show you how strained you are based on HR readings from the day. As you can I’m very strained at the moment. Even cooler, it will show you at what time and day you should come down into balanced levels.  My Polar has been my favorite new toy by a long shot since it arrived at my door step. Lots of great features, and lots more great features to come. If you are looking for a watch to take you to a new level…the Polar V800 is the one.

Recovery Status


More detailed Recovery Status


Calorie Burn from day. Broken up by training, daily activity (acts like Polar Loop as well), and basic metabolism.


As you can see, my daily activity accounted for very little of my kcal burn. After training today we zipped over to Flap Jacked head quarters for a visit. I stayed seated the entire time eating Flap Jacked protein pancakes and drinking coffee. It was a great time and I also walked out the door with some more product. Thank you very much Jenn.


Pro Diaries- Day 3

It is day three of logging my training diary, but there have been more workouts since I started logging later. Starting to feel a little tired, but excited because tomorrow is an easy active recovery day. Today the pace of the roll out was a tad slower. Little more coffee, little more food, and more time warming up. I was also little surprised at how so my quads were from yesterdays hill efforts. Normally I’m never that sore.

SWIM: 1hr-3K

Was a bit tired in the pool today so I spent some time chatting and mucking about to kill the hour. 400s have been my thing so I just hammered out 3×400 with snorkel, buoy, and paddles moderately hard. Then just floated around to make my three thousand.

BIKE: 4HRS aerobic high cadence

Finally starting to feel pretty normal now with the altitude, but decided to ride once more day based off of heart rate. It is rather hilly getting out of the area and it gets frustrating when you don’t get in as many kilometers as you would hope. But I’m trying not to be so number driven and train more on feel for this first week. I seem to have lost that feel for effort since all the focus use to be solely on staring at my power.

The 105 has been my favorite route since arriving here. Rolling, smooth, fast, and great views. It is kind of like the Queen K highway in Kona while you train there. Even though it is a simple out and back, it is a road you know you can get solid, constant work on.



RUN: 40 minute brick

Nothing special, just getting in the miles and all done rather leisurely pace up the mountain. However, once I arrived at the top a storm had brewed and was moving rather quickly my way. Funny how fast you can run when lightening strikes near by. Made it back with a massive negative split.


Routine I made for myself.



Every night ends the same with my Enduropack and Drip Drop.  EnduroPacks makes a great liquid multi-vitmain, glutamine, and amino acid patch that all facilitate a faster recovery.

This is my second time training at altitude and realize very quickly how fast you dehydrate. Drip Drop keeps my hydration levels optimal during and after training.


Pro Diaries 09/03/2014- CO

Wednesday was just a swim and run day, but it involved a tougher run session. We were up a little earlier this morning because we had planned a trip in Boulder. Ran first just to be in the comfort of cooler condition.


RUN: 2 Hours with 12×5 minute Lydiard bounding hill efforts


This was pretty long and tough session. The started elevation and ending elevation were pretty high, so the pace was altered to heart rate again. It is pretty crazy how fast elevation can destroy and destroy the session. This run really kicked up hard the last 30 seconds. It was brutal. I was able to maintain a constant pace through and achieved the goal of the session by maintaining stride rate and total time to the top each round.

This sessions toll took it’s time to kick in. I felt this while during my swim later in the evening, and it hit pretty hard. I ended up driving straight home to devour two of the little sample size Haagen-Dazs salted caramel ice cream plus a few (lots) other sweet treats. I don’t think I refueled correctly with the rush to get out the door to Boulder once I arrived back from run.

SWIM: 1 Hour

I just swam garbage yardage today and broke the swim up by 400-300-200-100, 5×200, 5×200 broken as 200 pull, 4×50 repeated till 1K.

STRENGTH: 45′ Core

Nothing special, just a routine I have created to address where I feel weakness is.


Every night ends the same with my Enduropack and Drip Drop.  EnduroPacks makes a great liquid multi-vitmain, glutamine, and amino acid patch that all facilitate a faster recovery.

This is my second time training at altitude and realize very quickly how fast you dehydrate. Drip Drop keeps my hydration levels optimal during and after training.


Pro Diaries 02/09/2014- CO edition

The wife and I decided to head up to Colorado for some cooler weather and a few less distractions that home can bring. With three more races to complete this year, I needed to find some extra form, and what better place than Colorado.

For the next 12 days we are here I will document the training and C level pro is doing while trying to make it back up to a podium position.  Yesterday a blown out tire put a halt to the writings.

SWIM: 4,000

Very lucky to be pretty close to a nice swimming facility just down the road. Only negative is that there is no master squad, so it is all solo yards for duration of stay. I try to keep the sets basic and repeatable so I can get through it.  Swimming is the only sport of the three I really do enjoy company. Biking and running solo is so much easier on day to day basis.

WU: 1K

200 Swim, 200 Kick, 200 IM, 200 Pull, 200 Swim

MAIN SET: 2000

-5×400 with snorkel, buoy, and paddles on 5:00 holding 4:30-4:35. Altitude is 6,200ft here so I needed the 30 seconds rest to catch my breath!

– Repeated warm up again



BIKE: 4hrs aerobic HR specific long ride


Map my ride+ Google maps have been my source for finding routes around the area. Once the route is made, i stick the directions on my top tube and off I go.

So far I can’t give full gas like at sea level nor hit the high mountains because the toll is pretty great while I’m trying to adapt. I have a rode the parallels the ranges and takes me south down near Colorado Springs. Great road with lots of rollers but keep the elevation lower. I have monitoring all training with the new Polar V800 and keep my HR pegged at my Zone 3 three levels. I find this doesn’t wipe me out and I get a solid workout.

Funny thing is, this was the flattest ride I could find! Still had plenty of climbing to do.


RUN: 50′ aerobic hilly run


Nothing to flash or spectacular in terms of a main set, just steady aerobic Z3 run on some beautiful trails. Elevation was pretty high at 1930 meters (6,330 ft) and the views were amazing. Could see over to Pikes Peak today.



Every night ends the same with my Enduropack and Drip Drop.  EnduroPacks makes a great liquid multi-vitmain, glutamine, and amino acid patch that all facilitate a faster recovery.

This is my second time training at altitude and realize very quickly how fast you dehydrate. Drip Drop keeps my hydration levels optimal during and after training.


Races and new triathlon recovery tool

After three races this year: Tyler Half, Raleigh 70.3, and Eagleman 70.3 I noticed lots of the guys I ride with pushing huge gears with slower RPMs than I was pushing. I immediately realized I was not as strong as I needed to be. I could hang with the bunch, but the efforts were taxing. So getting stronger in both the bike and run was the main focus heading into Steelhead and Lake Stevens 70.3



Riding in Austin is great and even better if you live on the out skirts, you avoid lots of city traffic. The only negative is the lack of long sustained climbs. So how do you get in lots of big gear work on hills to get stronger? You find a 2km stretch a ride it over and over and over. Just down the road from my place is Mansfield damn. Luckily there is a lower water crossing or else this set wouldn’t be as long. In the past three weeks I have done 80 x 2km reps up this hill! The set is pretty mentally challenging, especially when I only had one training partner for 15 of the 80 reps over the three weeks. I like to think I resembled Jan Ullrich riding up and down this climb at 70 rpm. This set better make me stronger.

I also recently went in for a bike fit as I felt my splits weren’t as good as they should be considering my FTP and w/kg in races. Seat was dropped nearly 2cm! Can’t wait to see how this affects ride and my trunk feels much more stable.


Running has been the toughest. I have resorted to waking up at 4-5 am just to get out the door for the tough session. There is one set I do x2 weekly that also consists of lots of hill reps. Even though can take 8 bottles of ice cold water, your splits don’t even come close to running in cooler conditions.

I have resorted to running more distance and aiming to get in as much vertical meters as I possible can. It is irritating to me when I can’t it goal splits, so I found so nice trails. I call this my Alpe d’ huez of Austin running. Lots of switch backs and great views.


I have found this block that more strength and small bouts of speed is the ticket for me. With out being extremely strong, speed is rather useless and can’t be supported or sustained. If you can run with a fast turn over but you stride length is short, your not going to be going any where too fast. Same as the bike. Plus, all the strength work keeps the HR lower, for me anyways, and I have found I can get away with a lot more volume without feeling as smashed as a high HR workout.


The following post is sponsored by Fit Fluential LLC on behalf of PowerPlay US

There is a new company out called PowerPlay US and I received my unit a while back and am loving it. It is portable cold/compression unit that is very affordable and doesnt cost an arm and a leg to purchase. So you go out and buy more triathlon equipment while preventing injury and recovering faster.

I have used other cold compression units but PowerPlay is much quicker and convenient to get going. There is an inner ice sleeve that you simple attach to the compression sleeve. Then a touch of a button gets the unit compressing.

The unit will give you the opportunity to select a range of 50-70 mmHg of pressure to build up to. The unit will build from to 50-70 mmHg then release. This cycle takes 20 minutes all together.

I chose the knee and ankle sleeve in my bundle. I really like how fast I could get into the unit and get it started with the removable ice pack. The compression feels great and would be nice if it went up to 80-or 90 mmHg. However, a little tip though. I will remove the ice pack 10 minutes before I’m going to use it. This allows the sleeve to have so more movement to it. I was able to wrap the sleeve that much tighter making the compression feel even tighter. This unit has three slots allowing you to use three pieces of compression, or share with friend.

My knee injury from years ago still requires lots of maintenance.  If I’m not doing my strength and icing routines I eventually start feeling small amount of pain. The PowerPlay unit has done a great job at keeping pain at bay after hard workouts and has kept swelling down to minimums. So check them out of you are looking to add a great tool to speed up your recovery.

Nice carry bag that fits your compression gear and unit.


The knee compression sleeve with the unit that allows 50-70 mmHg of compression


The removable ice pack inside of sleeve.