Archive for racing

It was a PB Type Weekend

Posted in Triathlon with tags , , , , , , , , , on April 16, 2013 by brianestover

Another fast weekend of racing by A3 athletes. A weekend that brought a first and many, many PB’s. At IM South Africa Nick opened up his pro career with a brand, spanking new IM PR of 8:48. But not only did he break 9:00 for the first time, knocking a measly 22 minutes of his previous IM PB, he also knocked 6 minutes off his IM marathon PB and did that after riding 112 miles faster than he has ever ridden it before. After dropping several spots early in the run, his steady pace brought him up over seven positions to net him 11th. It was a great hit out as a first time professional in a race.

Do you know what else happened in that race? Mark was racing, trying to avenge his 4th place finish from the year before. Mark rode according to the plan, letting a lot of guys ride past him. His plan netted him an IM bike PB ride dipping under 5:00 for the first time. Starting the run, he was down, way down, just over 13 minutes down in his age group. Seven guys in his age group were closer to the finish line then he was. But when it really matters, in his age group, could he do it on the run, could he pull back :30 per mile to win his age group and secure a Kona spot after riding faster than he has ever in an IM? Not just a few seconds here or there, he had to run 7.5 seconds faster per quarter mile for every single quarter mile of the race to take the lead in his age group. And he had to do it over the guy who won the age group in 2012 by 20 minutes. And so the chase began. 7 guys, just over 13 minutes and the 3k of distance already covered by the leader stood between him and the top step. Mile after mile, the splits came down, the guys in his age group fell to the wayside as he charged along the course. He moved into 6th, then 5th, up to 4th, then into the top 3. The course was getting shorter, the finish line closer. Second, after moving into second one guy stood between Mark and the age group win. With only single digit kilometers between Mark and the finish, with his competitor yet closer to the finish line, he was still minutes back. He continued the chase, the gap was coming down. Instead of :30 per mile it was :30 per km. Could he do it? Under 6k to go and no leader in sight. At 5k to go, up ahead, the age group leader came into view. With just under 4k to go Mark glides by and there is no response. It took a PB in the marathon, a 3:13:28, a marathon that was 10:41 faster than anyone else in his age group and a sub 9:20 time to secure the title. He went from 46th overall off the bike to 27th overall at the finish line. What a great race.

Half a world away, Bill and I toed the start line at the Leadman Tempe Triathlon. It’s always tough when you’ve been on the east coast and Mother Nature has slammed you weekend after weekend with bad weather. It’s hard for guys to come west and race a long course race so early in the season. I’m pretty sure Bill was a little nervous about the power plan I sent him at first glance. Add in sun, a trail run that was technical at parts, one of his first really long bike rides outside, he made a pretty good race taking a top 3 spot in his age group. The results have changed daily since the race, the above link may or may not be accurate. My race turned out well. After resorting to a Jedi swim trick to stay with the wave leader in the swim. The first 1.5 laps consisted of a few of us swapping the lead several times. I just listened to my power meter and rode according to plan with a 2 minute negative split over the back half of the race. While my watts and p/wt ratio are on the small side, just like my biceps, I confirmed that I can go faster then most on less watts thanks to a good position on my bike. My watts per lap were 208, 212, 211, 214 for an AP of 211 and NP of 221, which was lower than everyone I talked with after the race by 15-35w on the AP side. I gave up the lead in the M40-44 age group as I stopped to add nitrogen to the soil around a tree so that it grows up big and strong. With one of the slowest runs in the top 20 I strongly suspect that I was going to give up that lead even if I didn’t stop to pee on a tree. All in all a good day for A3 athletes as we got that early season race out of our way.

Bill and I working on our sunburns

Bill and I working on our sunburns

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The Calm Before the Season Storms

Posted in Triathlon with tags , , , , , , on March 11, 2013 by brianestover

If last weekend was the opening shots of the start of racing season heard around that world, this weekends races were more of a skirmish. A skirmish there, a big battle here, it matters not. You show up, race fast then sort it out a the end. At the Wildman Triathlon in Florida, Adam and Lora both won their age groups while finishing 5th and 7th overall. Between the time trial the other week and a slightly shorter than Olympic distance triathlon, it’s nice to know that their training is coming along as designed.

Further up north in the south, James earned a full compliment of donuts, 4 exactly. He earned them by winning the Cary Duathlon. The rule is win a race and you can eat them without having to do vo2max intervals for punishment.

Just so all my athletes know, if you win, place second or third overall you can eat 4,3 and 2 donuts respectively. If you win your age group you may have 1 dount. If you have more, or eat donuts when you haven’t won, that’ll cost you 7 extra minutes of vo2 work per donut. I want to clarify one more thing for you guys. Placing top 3 overall in a race or winning you age group gives you 2 and 1 extra whines for the month. But remember, all whining and donuts expire at the end of the month, no rollovers. These are some of the tricks I use to help keep people motivated, keep their eye on the prize and all those other sayings.

I will say good work everyone, and enjoy your donuts.

PBx2=IMAZ

Posted in Triathlon with tags , , , , , , , , on November 20, 2012 by brianestover

Ironman Arizona is a math equation. Really. Take two athletes, Jeff and Greg. Take what they’ve done, what they want to do, where they are at, plug it into a quadratic equation, divide that answer by the square root of both of their previous IM PB’s added together then divided by three and presto the solution.

Both of these athletes had some specific goals, Greg wanted an overall PB as well as a new PB in each segment. Jeff had the goal of wanting to beat my IM PB. Now a few years ago, Jeff had that same goal. But back then he was a 12:30+ IM dude. Could I turn Jeff from a 11:35 IM guy into a sub 10:57 IM guy? Greg was a 13:10+ IM guy. How much faster could he go, he set a huge half IM PB early in the season, could he do that for IM?

Goals in, solutions out, training done and the final exam. Now that the papers are graded and both athletes have their grade, how did they do?

Greg, knocked off 69 minutes from his record, setting a new IM PB of 12:02. I’d have to say that’s an A for the race, and I think there is room for him to knock off another chunk like that. His new self was only 8k or so ahead of his old self by the end of the race.

Jeff, reduced his PB by exactly 60 minutes going 10:35 and accomplishing his goal of smashing someone’s fastest IM. As a coach I couldn’t be happier about that.

All in all I couldn’t be happier with the whole weekend. Saw some old friends, made some new one’s, connected some circles, formed some dots. The racing went well and the beer tasted good.

Miami Vice or Victory

Posted in Triathlon with tags , , , , , , on October 28, 2012 by brianestover

Fall has arrived, the colors on the trees are changing, a cool breeze is blowing into town. The season is winding down, at least for my North American and EU based athletes. But just because the racing is tapering off, doesn’t mean the results stop.

For the third time this season one of the athletes I coach has finished as the top age group athlete in a 70.3 event. This time it was down in Miami at the Miami 70.3. Upon reaching dry land, Sarah steadily rode and ran her way through her wave and the rest of the age group women. When the dust had settled, she was about a mile ahead of the nearest age group woman.

Who’s #1?

Post race party!

Another BIG Weekend!!!

Posted in Triathlon with tags , , , , , , , , on October 15, 2012 by brianestover

The Hawaii Ironman has come and gone. What a great race at the front end of both the women and men’s fields! But that wasn’t the only racing going on. Nick was racing, fresh off his recent M18-24 age group win at the 70.3 World Championships. We were looking towards having him climb atop of his second WC podium. He did a ton of work heading into this race, was fitter than he’s ever been and was able to overcome some harsh conditions to go faster than last year, which not many people did.

Last year Nick was 118th overall, a fabulous result for any age grouper at IM Hawaii. This year he crushed it. Nick crossed the line 40th overall, finishing 2nd in the M18-24 age group and as the 11th amateur on the day. He turned in a marathon that was 9 minutes faster than he’s run before. An awesome performance from an athlete with lots of room for improvement.

Nick Baldwin, Accelerate 3 coaching

Nick on the run

Several time zones away Chad was racing at the Rev 3 Anderson Half. he grabbed 5th in his age group on a very hilly, hard half Ironman. This was his first long course attempt this season and it was a good hit out. I suspect he’ll have a few more cracks at this distance next season.

Chad rolling along

In Tucson, Billy finished 2nd in his age group and wrapped up second overall in the Tucson Triathlon series. He was three minutes down after the first race, cut that in half after the second race, but couldn’t quite cut the gap in the third race. This is his best overall series finish in nearly a decade of racing this series. Once again Billy proves getting older doesn’t have to slow you down.

One Size Doesn’t Fit All

Posted in Triathlon with tags , , , , , , , on October 8, 2012 by brianestover

We’ve all been out when someone wearing a one size fits all article of clothing proves that statement wrong. Most of the time it’s not pretty, even if the person wearing it is.

Meet Chris.

Chris Borden, Accelerate 3

Chris B. exiting the water

He’s one of the newest Accelerate 3 athletes. He was training by an endurance group training plan. Sometimes when you get an athlete and look at their training it’s pretty easy to see where the changes need to be made. In Billy’s case it lots of volume but not race specific work. Once the race specific work started he started PBing his Olympic distance, 70.3’s and IM’s . In Chris’s case he was doing intervals but not at the right intensity levels. His FTP had actually stagnated about 4 months ago and he was doing a lot of hard workouts but not necessarily hard workouts. For him it was a matter of changing how he was doing his intervals, changing the amount of time spent in certain levels, and looking at the data to come up with a power race plan that was actually higher in watts then he would have targeted otherwise.

I’m rather pleased with Chris’s first race as an Accelerate 3 athlete. Some tweaking here, some changing things there and BOOM he is 3rd overall in his first race as an Accelerate 3 athlete!

Chris Borden 3rd OV

Chris B – 3rd Overall!

A New Deal 5 for 3!

Posted in Triathlon with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 26, 2012 by brianestover

Five athletes racing this weekend at five different races. Surely it’s not possible that all five would finish in the top three overall is it? Is it? It is!

Kerry kicked off the weekend by grabbing a win at the Fort Desoto Sprint triathlon. She not only won the women’s race, but she also came in third overall. Quite a few dudes got chicked in this race. This may also be the highest a female Accelerate 3 athlete has ever placed overall in the men’s field. There have been a few fourth overall finishes but this may be the first top three overall.

accelerate 3 athlete Kerry Allen

Kerry laying claim to the top spot!

James continued his winning ways, grabbing his third W of the season at the Lake Norman Triathlon. He came into T2 in a dead heat for first place. James blasted out of T2 gaping the competition for the win. This should increase his lead on top of the Inside Out Sport Triathlon Series standings.

James Haycraft, Accelerate 3 Coaching

James running towards his 3rd Win this season

Chad grabbed third overall at the Rocketman Triathlon using his strong bike to move up towards the top three. He then unleashed his run to grab the final spot on the overall podium. In a few weeks I’ll be looking forward to Chad and James racing each other.

Chad Williamson, Accelerate 3 Coaching

Chad running into the top 3.

Rich snagged second overall at the Red Top Mountain Triathlon. He led out of the water, dropped to second during the bike then used the second fastest run split to hold his position over the field.

Rich Klepacz, Accelerate 3 Coaching

Rich locking down 2nd place on the bike

On the opposite coast of the country, Dusty ripped it up at the Santa Barbara Aquabike grabbing third overall. Dusty knocked off just over 8 minutes from this race last year over the swim and bike legs. last year he knocked off 10 minutes from the year before. 18 minutes over two years. That’s a huge amount of time and a testament to what happens when you go out and do the work.

Dusty Nabor, Accelerate 3 Coaching

Dusty in TT mode

A great weekend of racing by this group of athletes. 5 races, 5 states and 5 overall podiums. Not a shabby weekend of racing at all.