Friday, January 31, 2014

Sad News - Viva Bike Vegas cancelled!

I have enjoyed riding in the Viva Bike Vegas cycling event the last 2 years - once solo and once with my dad.  You can read about the rides here and here.  I was just looking at the calendar and wondering when the ride was this year, as I am planning out my training for Pumpkinman, and I was having trouble finding the date for the event.

I finally found their FaceBook page (of all things) and it listed there an apology that they are not doing this ride anymore, preferring to focus more on local community events.  I am really a bit heartbroken!  I am certainly glad I got to do this event with my father last year.

Now I have to start looking around for other cycling events to help keep me motivated in my training.  Its such a long time until Pumpkinman that I know from experience I can lose my focus and stop doing all that I should to prepare for the event.

So, any local events here in the Las Vegas area that you might reccomend?

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

What to do to get in shape.

Since I want to become and Ironman I need to work on my skills, stamina and ability in the 3 disciplines - Swimming, Riding and Running. I know there is a long way to go to get into any kind of shape to complete a sprint triathlon, let alone an Ironman.  The one and only triathlon I have done was Pumpkinman back in 2010.  Read about it here.

My goal then was to just complete the 3 events, which I did.  My time was horrible, but I did complete them.

Thinking about it, it makes sense to try the same race again this year, but make it a stepping stone to other triathlons of longer duration.  I am going to train to compete int he 2014 Pumpkinman Triathlon which takes place on 10/25/2014.  I've done it once so I know what to expect and I will train much harder for it.  Last time I had no time goal, this time I hope to complete the course in less than 2 and a half hours.

I know I need to train for this as my goal is an hour faster than I completed it in 2010.  I can do it, all it takes is hard work, preparation and determination.  One good thing is I am starting my training at least 2 months sooner than I did in 2010 plus I think I am more dedicated since this is but an interim goal on the way to a much larger goal and not an end in and of itself.

Anyone want to join my for some swimming, riding and running in October in Las Vegas?

Thursday, January 23, 2014

What is your dream?

As I look at where I am and where I need to go in terms of my fitness and weight loss I realize this is an important question - what is your dream?  There must be an underlying reason to this whole journey that is both concrete and measurable.  It is what will help to keep us motivated and on track.

I have been thinking about this question a lot and I'm not sure I have a fully defined dream as yet.  I have an idea of what it might be, but I have not fully voiced this dream even to myself.  To be honest I am a bit scared to mention it as that would mean I am going to have to hold myself accountable whether or not I make that dream come true. I do realize that it is important to give voice to your dreams or they will never come true.

I have been working on a novel called "A Quarter Ton to Kona" in which an overweight athlete overcomes several personal struggles to actually get to and complete the Ironman World Championship in Kona, Hawaii and become an Ironman.  In the back of my mind this is something that I think would be awesome, but the idea of going for it scares the hell out of me!

Right now I know that I am nowhere near where I would need to be to even contemplate a training plan to get me into shape to complete a full Ironman distance triathlon.  Do I think I can get there?  YES.  Will it be easy? NO.  Will it take time and dedication? Certainly!

So, I guess I am putting it out there - in the next 4 years I will to become an Ironman - completing a 2.4 mile swim, a 112 mile bike ride and a marathon run (26.2 miles) all in less than 17 hours.

So, what are your dreams???

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Weight update

I've been a bit neglectful of the blog lately simple because there hasn't been much to tell.  I've been slowly walking farther each day and getting back to where I was before my trip to the hospital.  I've also been taking my medications as I have been instructed and the fluid retention is greatly reduced.  This has also affected my weight.  On January 1, I got on the scale and weighed in at 470.4 lbs.  This morning I got on the scale and it showed 445.4 lbs.  That is a loss of 25 lbs. in the last 21 days.  That is great, but I acknowledge that the majority of it is water weight.  Not all of it, though.

Since my stint int he hospital I have been diligent about watching what I am eating and not over eating.  I set a very reasonable daily calorie intake of 2450 calories per day (MyFitnessPal wants to set it at 2735, but I think that's a bit high.)  The good news is that with one exception, when I was over by 35 calories, I have been within my calorie limit every day since then.  I also have not had a diet Soda (or any soda) since I was in the hospital as well.

These 2 changes have had a very favorable impact on my overall health and well being.  I feel better.  I'm not usually as munchie as I had been before when I ate more, and the weight is coming down.  The next move for me is to add in more exercise in the form of riding my bike as well as weight training when the gym opens next week.

I look forward to getting back on the bike and racking up the miles in 2014.

Get on your bikes and ride!!!

Monday, January 13, 2014

A visit to the doctor

OK, I have to come clean.  I don't like going to the doctor.  Pretty much I figure if it ain't broke, don't fix it, but that attitude only works so far.  There are things that could be broke and you won't know about it until its too late. So with this in mind, I am now working with a doctor to get and stay healthy.

One of my main concerns that I knew needed to be addressed is my blood pressure.  I have very high blood pressure, it seems based upon the readings at the doctors on Friday.  I have also been retaining fluids in my legs and so we are starting with 2 medications at this time.  One is to address the blood pressure and the other is to address the fluid retention.

As I mentioned in my previous post, I started the year at an almost all time high weight of 470.4.  I knew a portion of that was retained fluids from the trip to the hospital and so I am happy to report that after 4 days on the medication I am down to 457.6.  That's not an unheard of amount of loss considering the vast majority of it has been fluids.

My goal is to keep up this loss and steadily reduce my weight through the rest of the year.  I have been eating healthier and less and know I can do this.  I think a reasonable number of pounds to lose in the year would be 100.  That means that on January 1, 2015 my goal is to weigh 370 lbs. Will this be easy?  No, it won't it will take focus and dedication, but I know I can do it.  I have to do it as my health requires it.

With this thought in mind, I am adding a ticker to the right side indicating my current weight and I will be updating it about once a week so I can monitor my progress towards my goal.

Monday, January 6, 2014

2013 is done, bring on 2014

OK, I guess its almost a requirement for anyone who is writing a blog to post a year end wrap up and look forward to the New Year. So here is mine.

2013 saw me participate in several events, all of a cycling nature.  The first was the Tour De Cure where I was totally unprepared for the difficulty of the hills on the chosen course and I had my only DNF.  Next was Fatty's 100 Miles of Nowhere where I completed a metric century of which I am very proud..  After that was the Viva Bike Vegas, which I got to ride with my dad and is the highlight of my year.  Last was the BIKE:MS challenge where I completed the 30 miles day one ride with no problems.

Unfortunately I didn't hit my mileage goal for the year and the only one to blame was myself.  In fact I was just shy of 1000 miles for the year.

The year ended with a bit of a health scare and 4 days spent in the hospital.  Seems I had a bit of an intra-abdominal bleed which caused my blood pressure to drop dangerously low.  Among the effects from this was a temporary shut down of my kidneys and very low hemoglobin.  The good news is that 4 days of IV fluids, some antibiotics, iron and potassium and I was well enough to head home.  Unfortunately 4 days of bed rest has left me bloated, stiff and hardly able to walk, but that is improving day by day.

This was a wake up call and I am actually seeking out a new primary physician and have an appointment coming up this Friday.  Time to start taking my health seriously. One major issue is my weight which has unfortunately gone back up.  On 1/2 I weighed myself and was not happy - 470.4 lbs.  I know several of the pounds are from the fluids I still have to work out of my body, but its still a horrible number. Time for a serious commitment to doing what I know is right.

We have joined a new Planet Fitness opening near our house very soon and will be spending quality time there several days per week.  I will also get back on my bike and get more miles in this year.  I'm aiming high again - 2014 in 2014.

As for organized events, the only one I have planned so far is the Tour De Cure ride coming up the first weekend in May.  I hope to redeem myself after last year's poor performance.  The main focus will be losing weight and getting healthy as the title of the blog goes.

I hope everyone has a healthy and active Year.

Get on your bikes and ride!!!!