"Men often become what they believe themselves to be. If I believe I cannot do something, it makes me incapable of doing it. But when I believe I can, then I acquire the ability to do it even if I didn't have it in the beginning" - Mahatma Gandhi

Sunday, January 18, 2009

I'll take one!

So for those of you out there that are allergic to grains (including wheat, barley, rye) there may be a solution to the beer problem, that being the inability to consume it! In a venture into a local public house this weekend I was in the mood for water. After a very fulfilling Pad Thai, I was ready for bed so alcohol would not be my friend. I started to read the beers on the cards they leave on every table, just to pass the time as I was being neglected in the corner of the booth. To my astonishment it read "Gluten- free beer" and listed ONE beer. WELL, I was in awe of the fact that somebody had the will to bring in something to keep people like me happy. After a general inquiry about the beer, I promptly ordered one and took my first sip of a gluten-free beer. It may be my last. La Messagere, the name of the special drink, was $8.25, without tip, and possibly the nastiest taste of a cross between cheap wine/cider/and beer that I have ever sipped. I'll stick to the water.


On another note, I had a bike fit done the other day by coach Noa with her Retul bike fitting system (you may have seen people like Norman Stadler and Craig Alexander on them on you tube...http://ca.youtube.com/watch?v=SLRv5ok5SOA). It was really cool being transformed to a stick man on the computer. Made a couple of small changes to saddle height, moved some spacers on the fork, and changed the cleat position.


Monday, January 12, 2009

Day one. Take one.

First day of trying to make a nice groove and sit in it. Unforntuately it started off badly as I missed my first swim with Tyee Masters!! The last 2 nights I haven't slept well (I think it's the pillows - I am a really particular sleeper) and although I woke up at 5:30am today I wasn't in any state to be swimming, and to start the week off I figured I should get sleep.

Went to the commonwealth pool to play catch-up and get a swim in before lunch. Put in about 3.5-4km then did a short 20min run right after before getting lunch, picking up my bike, picking up my trainer from home, and heading to the pool to do a spin for a couple of hours. I got a new pair of cycling shoes last week from Speed theory in vancouver. They are the Shimano TR-70's. Custom heat moldable...very very comfortable. They are without a doubt the most comfortable pair of cycling shoes I have ever tried or ridden. If you are thinking of getting a pair, make sure you plan for 45mins to an hour as it takes a while to get everything molded.



For all those that have played the Wii or own the unit, they know how much fun and how hard it is to find! Seriously, how can a product be so hard to get a hold of?!? Cranbrook was sold out, Vancouver - same situation, and Victoria has nothing until Thursday or Friday this week. Fingers crossed on getting one.

Til next time,

Kamal

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Pioneer 8km

Today was the 30th anniversary of the Prairie Inn Harriers Pioneer 8km road race. To start the day, I woke up groggy after an interupted sleep all night. Had a good breakfast, got a coffee at starbucks, and headed off to find the race location...

It was a good thing that I was leaving 2 hrs early as I got lost along the way. It was a nice sunday drive though, I can see the attraction for all those older folks. Got to race site, got warmed up, cooled off, and warmed up again just before start. LOTS of people!! I never realised that it was such a huge event! In the post-race results, they have 630 people logged as having raced. Apparently past finishers were invited, along with BCs or Canada's top 100 runners.

Gun start, and we were off. Because it was a gun start and not timing chip start, I tried to weasel closer to the front of the now chasing pack, unsuccessfully! It took about 400m to get in a position where I didn't have to jostle with others and could actually pick it up a bit. Going into the race I wanted to have an average of a 6-minute mile pace. That would put me in at 30mins. Everything was going according to plan until about just after 2km where the course turned up W. Saanich Rd, up the hill. The hill got to me, and after that if I tried to push it I would get closer to wanting to hurl. So, I backed off 3 or 4 times to save face.

Going through the 4km mark I was 15:53, off the pace I wanted (6:25 pace). After that, it was hard to keep pushing. At the 6km mark I hooked onto another runner and drafted behind all the way to the finish stretch, at which point I picked it up just to finish a place better, not for the time. I ended up 125/630 with a time of 32:13. The following are my splits:

first 4km: 15:53
second 4km: 16:21
Av. Pace: 6:29/mile

It's only the beginning of the year, and between the recovery from last year's stress fracture in my foot, and this being a C-race, it went OK. Hatley Castle is in a couple of weeks, and although hilly it will be a good one.

Cheers

Saturday, January 10, 2009

New Year, new city

Happy New Year everybody!

So to kick off the new year I moved to Victoria to start training full-time. It’s been a pretty slow adjustment – I miss all the home comforts and reconoisable faces. But, it’s good. I came over on one of those new Coastal class ships that BC Ferries has now. It’s so confusing!! There are so many little sitting areas all over and it’s really disorientating...I was tired too which didn’t help. I met with my coach on Friday and it looks like this year will be good. Slowly getting settled in and figuring out where to ride and what groups to join/workout with. There are so many choices that it is actually a bad thing! So many workouts overlap. Real training starts Monday. The last couple of days I have just been doing my own thing casually while getting my bearings.

Tomorrow I am going to run the Pioneer 8km. It is one of the Frontrunners race series races (the first one) so there are a few races coming up over the next couple of months that I can use to track my progress. Thoughts about tomorrow: don’t really know how it will pan out. Basically I am going to go all out and see what I have in me. Fitness wise I am fine, just maintaining any kind of speed that will be the issue.

I’ll post an update on the race tomorrow.

Cheers