Sunday, September 16, 2012

Did I mention...

that I am an IRONMAN!!!!
Yup! It's true! On July 15th 2012 I swam 3.8k, biked 180k, and ran (mostly walked) 42k to finish my first (and probably last) IRONMAN in 14 hours and 23 minutes.
One of these days I will get around to writing that race report. Call it delayed gratification on my part :-)

Sunday, June 24, 2012

The longest ride...

This week is my last "big" training week before starting the taper to Ironman Zurich. As usual I did not stick to any training plan (even thoughnI bought and prepared several). But I did manage to survive 192k on my road bike yesterday. The legs and the nutrition were absolutely fine, but the bike fit is poor... I had to stop every 25k to stretch the neck and shoulders. Despite that, I am confident that I can make the 10 hour cut-off of the bike... On to a 15K run in the rain...

Friday, May 25, 2012


Ironman training will be briefly interrupted this weekend for a good cause. I will be participating with the NHTV running team in a relay race from Paris to Rotterdam to raise money for cancer patients. You can follow us on Please consider donating and/or cheering!

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Training Update

For once, my absence from blogging isn't because I haven't been training. On the contrary, I have been training VERY consistently. So, obviously, there isn't much time left to blog about anything. As you may or may not (care to) know. I am currently training for 3 big (for me) events: the Rotterdam Marathon, the ROPA run (along with the NHTV team) and the Zurich Ironman... My #1 priority is to not get injured, #2 is to be in good shape to finish all three events without getting injured, and #3 to finish them all smiling.
I have been using the bike trainer DILIGENTLY!
Training wise, I'm in pretty good shape. I have managed to build up my training to where I can fit (quite comfortably) about 10 hours of training in each week, with most of it happening during the week. Right now, the mix is heavily tilted towards running (about 50% of my training hours) for two reasons: the weather (too cold to ride outside) and the marathon in April. As soon as it gets warmer, I will start building up the weekend long bike rides. That should add another 5 hours of training each week. I will try to maintain that during March and April and start building up the training even further (to about 18 hours) in May and June by doing some more swimming. Despite spending a fortune on one of the Training Peaks plans, I have decided that what works best for me is just keeping a routine and go slow. I'm definitely NOT into complicated workouts that require too much math. Training is for me (whether it involves swimming, biking, running) a time to relax. I already overthink work, can't ALSO do it during leisure time ;-)

I ran 10K on a frozen beach today... Happiness!
 Between training and work, there isn't too much time left to socialize. To solve that quandary, I have started using training time to hang out with some good colleague/ friends. 5 x 500m go by so much quicker if you know that at the end of each 500 you can chat a bit again. Same for the cardio sessions at the gym: the chit chatter makes them go by so much quicker!

Tried something new: wall climbing!
So, all in all, training is going really well. I did miss out on most of it last weekend due to a crazy snowstorm. I did run right after the snowstorm, when all was still nice and soft. But the snow froze and it got too slippery to run my planned 15 miler. Below is a summary of my training so far...

Week 1: 4.5 hours (including Egmond Half Marathon)
Week 2: 7 hours
Week 3: 8.75 hours
Week 4: 11 hours
Week 5: 8 hours (only 1 hour weekend training due to snowstorm)
Week 6: 8.25 hours (with hopefully another few to go)

I'm trying to put it all in a spreadsheet with nice graphs and all. But I'd rather spend the time training. Instead I use the Runner's World calendar.

The Low Tech Option, Just as Effective
Happy training y'all!

PS: for those wondering, training 10+ hours per week does NOT contribute to weight loss.Only to an increased appetite...
PPS: I do foresee some difficulties in future training due to vacations/ family visits but they are so TOTALLY WORTH IT!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Egmond Half Marathon - Race Report

So... yeah... I'm a gazillion race reports behind, but I updated the race page so you can go and sneak a peak there. The fall 2011 season has basically consisted of me running many races for which I was not trained or prepared for. Also, I got to re-run some of my favorite races of 2010 at a much slower time....
Egmond aan zee half marathon was no different. I ran this year's (2012) edition a jolly 15 minutes slower than last year's (2011). BUT, I also ran a total of 69 miles in December 2011, vs a whopping 131 miles in December 2010. So... yes, training helps. Which is why the motto for 2012 is train more, race less (but more on that in a latter post, in the meantime see the side bar for clues) --->

So... Egmond 2012... Well, I enjoyed this year's edition EVEN MORE than last year. First of all, the day starting with meeting the lovely Renée (also known as pinkypie) and her husband. Totally made my day! She ran the 1/4 marathon while I had coffee and apple pie with Ron (maybe not the wisest pre-race fueling strategy but it did not bug me). I chit chatted with them a bit too long after Renée's race and still had to make my way to the race tent area to drop my bag. That took forever so I missed my 12:34 race start. Whoops! But not to worry. Another buddy was running the 1/2 and had a start time of 13:00 so I lined up in that corral. Once we started moving I decided I really needed a last minute bathroom stop so scored a free porta pottie (I hate those things). Best idea ever!

I started the race really slow. I was aiming for 10 min/miles (unlike last year's 9 min/miles) but except for the first one (9:47) I was even slower than that. Once we hit the beach (miles 3 to 7) I settled into a very comfortable 10:15 to 10:45 pace made even better by the wind in our backs. Fortunately I had dressed very well for the occasion! I was only occasionally glancing at my watch, no pressure! The run was gorgeous. Last year, we had the wind against us and I was almost 2 min/mile faster!

Once we left the beach and hit the dunes, I kept the slow pace and enjoyed the scenery for another 2 miles. Around mile 9 we turned around for good and got the wind against us again. Don't know what happened there, but I picked up the pace .Despite a strong headwind, the next 2 miles were at 9:50 pace (including slowing down once for water and a second time when I saw my buddy), then I had a mile a 9:27. By then I really thought I'd be toast, but I picked the pace even further for a final 8:36 mile... This is the second time in a row (last time was Nijmegen Zevenheuvelenloop 15K) where I found myself with a very decent quick at the end... Very enjoyable!

All in all I had a great time at Egmond. I love how within one race we get to experience so many different conditions. It makes the race go by so much quicker!