Monday, April 2, 2012

Big Weekend Wrap-up: The End of "30 for 30" and the Annual Double-down

Webb: In like a lion out a like a lamb my ass. We began March with a plan to swim 30 days. This past weekend we concluded our swim-focus experiment and celebrated by opening April with our annual Double-Down event.

4 x 500 as:
500 swim,
500 swim with pull-buoy,
500 swim with pull-buoy & paddles,
500 swim
total - 2,000m

Elle: I can't believe '30 for 30' is over. And we did it. I didn't know if I'd be able to see it through, but I pushed really hard, and came out the other end a better, more confident swimmer, and learned some interesting things about myself in the process. It wasn't easy, but I'm really glad I fought through.

DAY 31: Global Sufferlandrian Day! and The Multisport Expo

BIKE WORKOUT:'s "Revolver"

Webb: March 31st/April 1st was Sufferlandrian Day. With the Multisport Expo on the schedule, we had to be sure to get in our Sufferfest workout. So we woke early and were on the trainers at 7:30. (Not our usual Saturday wake up time.) I still love this workout. We had not done it in a long time. I feel strongly we should hire a coach for next season. I just worry s/he'll forsake our love for I can't train without Sufferfest.

Elle: Nothin' like a good, vomit-inducing session to start your weekend! I didn't actually throw up, but I definitely felt that I was flirting with that line several times during the workout. Which is par for the course for Revolver.

SWIM WORKOUT: Total Immersion Swim Clinic
75:00 clinic focusing mainly on distance-per-stroke and balance

Webb: Three words to describe the clinic: Cold, shivering and cold. Take some advice, never attend a clinic in a freezing pool. There was far too much time not-swimming while the clinician did his thing. The drills between chattering teeth were helpful. We swam with little electronic metronomes in our swim caps. Every time it beeped we initiated a stroke. We then progressively slowed down the metronome, effectively deconstructing our form. By doing this you can definitely feel where your form is out of balance. Fixing it, well that is another issue. I'm glad we went; it would have been nice if it hadn't been so damn cold.

Elle: Yes, it was cold, but I think Webb is exaggerating just a tad. I'm glad we attended the clinic, I did learn some things I need to work on, about my particular stroke, and about proper form in general. But I too was glad to get out, since, if you're in the pool and NOT swimming the whole time (i.e. listening to an instructor), it can get a little frosty.

Webb: Not exaggerating.

With Ironman Hero Mark Allen
KEYNOTE SPEAKER: MARK ALLEN (6-time Ironman World Champion)

Elle: It was great to hear Mark Allen talk about stories that you've seen on tv and read about, but to hear it straight from him was pretty cool. He talked about the 'Iron War', and about his journey to finally winning Ironman world championship after so many years losing to Dave Scott. Definitely inspiring.

As a sports fan, it was a little surreal at first when Mark Allen emerged from behind the curtain to present to the audience. I am in my 4th full-time season doing triathlons, but I remember the late 80's trying to find info about it in the days before the Intertubes. Like Dave Scott (last year's keynote speaker), his affable style belied his accomplishments. (The one that blew me away is that he finished on the podium in 90% of his races!) If you get a chance to see him speak, do not miss the opportunity.

Elle: After the keynote speech, Webb and I explored the Expo, which is always fun. A room full of people who have the same interests and experiences as you is such a treat. Usually we end up boring people with our stories of training and racing, but now we were surrounded by folks who all know exactly what we're talking about/going through! And all the booths of race directors and triathlon vendors, it was a blast. One of our favorites is Tim Richmond, the race director of Max Performance races, and he's a really nice guy.
With Team
We also got to meet the guys behind Team, which we've discussed joining after we watched the documentary, 'Running the Sahara'. was co-founded by Matt Damon & Gary White, and Matt's brother Kyle is an Ironman-distance triathlete and the team director of TEAM

Of course the guys from Landrys were there, and the Boston Triathlon Team. And at the gear swap, I picked up a pair of Rudy Project sunglasses. I had a great time.

Webb: We also met Mark Allen after the speech at his booth. He's a great guy. If you do not know who he is or maybe you do but you do not know about the Iron War of 1989, check out the link above. (It does not take you to Matt Fitzgerald's book of the same name. I have heard there are questions about that book that need to be resolved until I'll read it.) Meeting the Team guys was second only to meeting Mark Allen. Be sure to check out that link too. They are doing important work globally and should especially hit home to endurance athletes. You do not take water for granted.
Rudy Project Sunglasses

Celebrating Sufferlandrian Day

Elle: After the Expo we headed over to the Asgard to properly celebrate Sufferlandrian day with some food and pints. All I can say is, when are going to the Asgard again? Holy cow, the food was so super tasty - the truffle tater tots were out of this world. And while we were there I noticed at the table next to us some folks wearing shirts, so I chatted with them for a bit. We were pretty exhausted at this point, so after some food and beer, we were pretty ready to call it a day. Especially since we had to wake up in the morning for TWO road races...
With Ron Shea, founder of


Race #1: Cambridge City Run, Cambridge, MA (Fresh Pond)
Start time: 10:30AM
Interval plan: 1:00 sub threshold, 1:00 no max HR, 3:00 descending HR; Recovery 5:00 HR zone 1

Webb: In the past, I have run the races but not raced them. (No surprise to readers of the blog, Elle always gave them effort.) This year we had a different plan since we have been trying out a non-swim program from a coach. We were supposed to do two interval runs this week. I made the decision to do those training sessions during the races. For Race #1, we did the "easier" of the two sessions. It was a little tricky and we were probably hated by all the other participants. But hey, they are C races, so we were just training through them.

Elle: It was tough to do intervals during the race, especially through the narrow parts that looped around the pond. But holy cow, it made the race go by fast! After we crossed the finish line I grabbed a water bottle, and we went straight to the car to head down to race #2. After a quick stop at the supermarket for some provisions, we drove to Cohasset, arriving with enough time for a pit stop before heading over to the start line.
Celebrating Sufferlandrian Day

Race #2: Race by the Sea, Cohasset, MA
Start time: 1:00PM
Interval plan: 2:00 easy ascending HR, 3:00 super-threshold; Recovery 3:00 HR zone 1

Elle: Again, doing the intervals made this race just fly by. Instead of counting off the miles, we were so preoccupied with our heart rates and intervals, that before I knew it, we were running by the 'Mile 5' sign. One guy noticed that we were up to something, and called us out, which was funny, since we would pass him for the super threshold sets, and then he'd pass us back during the recovery.

Webb: I'm tired. I think I'll take a day off.

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