Triathletes have their own vocabulary. Some of the words are fairly funny, some sound completely made up, and some are self-explanatory. You might hear words like BONK (used to describe running out of energy during a s/b/r), ENDO (the result of slamming on the front brake on a bike, causing the rear end of the bike to come off the ground), FARTLEK (while it sounds like it involves yesterday’s Mexican lunch, it is actually a type of run workout), MOP (not the cleaning tool…more appropriately describes a Middle-Of-the Pack competitor), KONA (the holy grail…Ironman Hawaii), CHICKED (when an older dude like myself gets passed & destroyed by a much younger woman) or GEEZERED (similar to chicked, but insert much older, blue haired competitor. For those of you that know him…picture Bruce ReidJ)
World-class triathletes are amazing. They are wicked fast and can keep a pace for a long, long time. Take for example Craig Alexander. He won the Kona race a few weeks ago in the time of 8 hours 20 minutes. If you don’t know much about triathlon, that seems like a really long time. That’s the equivalent of watching almost three NFL games on TV, playing more than 2 rounds of golf, driving from Jacksonville to Richmond, or a decent night’s sleep. Well, let’s break it down so we can all understand exactly how fast it is. First off, he swam 2.4 miles in just under 51 minutes. That’s about 1:12 per 100 yards. That’s fast. Not Michael Phelps fast (it takes him only 49 seconds to swim 100 yards), but really fast! After that swim, he biked 112 miles in 4 hours 37 minutes, and averaged 24.5 mph for the entire time! After that, he ran a marathon…26.2 miles in 2 hours 48 minutes, and averaged 6:25 per mile. I haven’t run a mile in 6:25 in probably 25 years! Then compare his time to the average times for the 2008 Ironman Louisville: Average swim time: 1:25:09, or roughly 2:00 per 100 yards. Average bike time: 5 hours, or roughly 17 mph average. Average run time: 5:28.01 or a 12:28 per mile pace. The average overall time for Ironman Louisville was 13 hours, 47 minutes, roughly FIVE & A HALF HOURS slower than Craig’s time.
For the past two Christmases, I have written a book for Jen. Basically, the intent was to have the book be a running journal of what we did during the year. The first year, I hand-wrote the entire book…about 100 pages or so…and did it in about two weeks (talk about sore hand muscles!). When I wrote the first book, my friend Pablo told me that I’d have to do it every year from then on. True to form, when Jen opened it that Christmas, the first words out of her mouth were, “I want one of these every year!” So, last year I wrote volume 2 of the “Year of…” Except last year, I actually published it. I found a GREAT company called Blurb (www.blurb.com) where you can design a real book. Think of the photo books that you can get from Shutterfly, but 100 times better. The book looked just like a “real” book that you could buy at Barnes & Nobles. Pictures, captions, dust jacket, the whole 9-yards. All of this reminds me…I need to get working on this year’s book…
If you live in NE Florida and need a photographer, you should try Danielle Walker (www.daniellewalkerphotography.com). She does just about everything – portraits, sports, etc. We’ve used her for family portraits twice, and she’s been the photographer for a Daddy-Daughter Dance that Jen and I have held the past two years. We LOVE the outcome. She’s a great woman, a Christian, and a dear family friend. If you use her, mention that you read about her here – it probably won’t mean anything, but it will be neat to know that she got business from my blog.