Archive for July, 2014


Ok.  Here I sit. The eve of another big commitment.  We accomplished the 70.3 triathlon, not without a fair share of suffering but we finished it.  I roll out my next plan.  Ironman 2015 (undecided on venue yet) most likely will be Louisville, Racine, or Muncie.  Yes it will be another 70.3…initially.  If I feel good about my training and where I stand that may change and we go for the full 140.6.  Yikes.

So what do I need to do?  Well 8/1/14 I plan to really tailor my training and nutrition to meet each specific goal to accomplish this.  My nutrition has to be dialed in (I have calf cramp issues that I believe are hydration and nutrition related), and I need to achieve a better functional race weight.  My swim discipline has to improve…2.4 miles in the water seems like, well, 2.4 miles! My cycling has to improve.  I am not yet a very efficient cyclist and only time on the bike will help this.  Intervals here I come (thank you Mike Smith).  And though I consider myself a runner first, running after the other two disciplines is a whole other animal. 

So here is where I am at going into Day 1:

Weight: 206 Goal is to be at or under 185 to start 2015 race season.

Swim: 1.2 @ 43 minutes.  Goal is to be at or under 35

Bike: 56 miles @ 3:15+.  Goal is 2:45 or better

Run: 13.1 @ 2:59 (triathlon) 2:04 (regular half mary).  Goal is 2:30 Tri, 1:45 (Half)

I will post my journey here and welcome feedback, training tips and plain old accountability.

2015 is going to be huge and I plan on taking my body to another level…help me get there!


I wanted to highlight what I think is a big deal in our country today. The obesity rate is on the rise and getting worse in most demographics. I don’t want to write a huge article here but I think the chart and stats are good indicators that we need to help change the way we all eat and move. It will take all of us encouraging and motivating each other to beat this monster. More than 1/3 of U.S. adults are obese! What!!??

Obesity is common, serious and costly
•More than one-third of U.S. adults (34.9%) are obese. [Read abstract Journal of American Medicine]
•Obesity-related conditions include heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and certain types of cancer, some of the leading causes of preventable death.
•The estimated annual medical cost of obesity in the U.S. was $147 billion in 2008 U.S. dollars; the medical costs for people who are obese were $1,429 higher than those of normal weight.

2010 State Obesity Rates
State % State % State % State %
Alabama 32.2 Illinois 28.2 Montana 23.0 Rhode Island 25.5
Alaska 24.5 Indiana 29.6 Nebraska 26.9 South Carolina 31.5
Arizona 24.3 Iowa 28.4 Nevada 22.4 South Dakota 27.3
Arkansas 30.1 Kansas 29.4 New Hampshire 25.0 Tennessee 30.8
California 24.0 Kentucky 31.3 New Jersey 23.8 Texas 31.0
Colorado 21.0 Louisiana 31.0 New Mexico 25.1 Utah 22.5
Connecticut 22.5 Maine 26.8 New York 23.9 Vermont 23.2
Delaware 28.0 Maryland 27.1 North Carolina 27.8 Virginia 26.0
District of Columbia 22.2 Massachusetts 23.0 North Dakota 27.2
Florida 26.6 Michigan 30.9 Ohio 29.2 West Virginia 32.5
Georgia 29.6 Minnesota 24.8 Oklahoma 30.4 Wisconsin 26.3
Hawaii 22.7 Mississippi 34.0 Oregon 26.8 Wyoming 25.1
Idaho 26.5 Missouri 30.5 Pennsylvania 28.6

If we don’t get a handle on this epidemic these number will rise. These stats are from 2010 and when I get my hands on more current stats I will share them. These are our friends, neighbors and family suffering. Would you let your loved ones drink poison knowingly? Why do we let them eat themselves into this kind of sickness? Think about it.

Some of you know I have been plagued with calf cramps quite consistently and I might add inconveniently, for some time.  I know I don’t have my nutrition dialed in well, nor do I stretch appropriately before and after…pause collective criticism…ok I get it.  But how do I solve the problem?

Researching and asking some questions I got plenty of advice…all good and sound I might add.  Because at this point I am willing to try anything short of bloodletting with leaches.  I received advice on using pickle juice before, after or during the races, ingesting mustard when cramps were evident.  Stretching was a common theme, “Do you do it, if not, why?”  Calf exercises were another suggestion to supplement my training.  I will say I have huge calves, not bragging, just a fact, and I have always found it hard to out work them.

Reading last night in, “The art and science of Low Carbohydrate Performance.” by Jeff S. Volek and Stephen D. Phinney, I came across an interesting blurb concerning magnesium.  I will share a bit of info here and maybe some of you might be able to comment on it.  I will paraphrase some of what was said.  Most doctors or coaches will tell you cramping has to do with 1) dehydration 2)not enough potassium, or 3)not enough calcium.  Only a few will attribute cramping to magnesium problem.

Magnesium calms muscles…heart, nerves, and the brain.  Low magnesium levels can cause these organs to get “twitchy”.  Stress on a twitchy muscle causes cramps. If a muscle cramps you stop using it, brain cramps you get a seizure, heart cramps you die.  The last two are rare but muscle cramps…well we know are painfully common.

Making frequent cramps stop is the first order of business.  Cramps are a prime indicator that there is MAG deficiency.

How do we stop them…the docs go on to say utilizing a 20 day regimen of a slow-release magnesium pill 3 times a day for 20 days is a prime way to start alleviating this issue.  They claim most people plagued with cramps see a reduction or elimination within two weeks.  They suggest repeating the routine one more time if cramps return at a later date then continue with a daily supplementation of 1 pill routinely to stave off the cramps indefinitely.

I don’t know if it works…but along with some other suggestions I am going to put it to the test and will report back with my results.

Thanks for reading and good luck

Jeffrey “Previously Fat Guy”





Mission Accomplished! My first triathlon…my first 70.3. Two words describe this event for me…Painful and awesome!

It is hard to describe how I felt as we waded into that water for the tread water start. Air temp was cool and crisp but the lake was very comfortable making the entry pretty calming. Once I was past the point of being able to touch a little apprehension set in. This was the point I felt committed. Not that I wasn’t before but for some reason my mind told me at the precise moment there was no turning back or quitting.
It was a 630 start and the air temp was creating a fog on the water. We could not see the buoy at the turn around point a little over a half mile ahead. The swim was an easy (easy is a relative term I know)down and out. My goal was 47 minutes. One minor foot cramp and a brief redirection (Yes you can get off course swimming) and I was out in 43.

Transition…7 minutes not good. But this race was, for me, all about the actual race time. I had not real intention on transitioning fast so not a real issue for me (other than at the end when I saw how close I was to my goal and my “T” times were really the difference. Oh well, definitely a focus for the next race.

Bike…got out to a good start. First 10 miles were hilly, not bad but not flat. The six miles after were flat but with a cross wind that was a bit challenging to keep a decent average speed up. Different pavement along the way made for an interesting ride. But the new bike held up well. I was so happy to have a new ride under me. Made all the difference in the world. the turn around at 28 miles seems an almost impossible point to reach but after the turn the ride became much more comfortable and relaxing. Speeds picked up and at some points I was hitting 28-30 mph with little effort…until the headwinds! Boom! If I averaged 17 mph for those 6 miles heading into the hills I would be surprised. I did stop at the last aid station to stretch my back (realized my core is not strong enough for that long of a ride). Then I hit the hills heading back to the transition and I came in 15 minutes sooner than I planned.

Transition…7 minutes again. As before not trying here but lamenting after the fact.

Run…I do believe I entered the 9th or 10th level of Dante’s hell on this run. For two miles my quads felt tight and almost unmoving. I managed to average a 10 minute mile for the first two and was crazy to feel the lactic acid drain from my quads and a relaxed feeling settle over my legs. Now this was not a flat run by any means. Hilly it was. Gravel for about 1.5 miles played a small amount of havoc on my feet and I did realize my shoes had seen their last run. Mile 9 was the kicker…calf cramps plagued me for the rest of the run. Dehydration, nutrition, overworked, I don’t know but serious research is happening to make sure I can beat these cramps next time. Mile 11 had doubt in my mind about finishing and a whole lot of prayer was happening to get me over the last hill. But when I could see the finish line and hear the cheers of people…I could hear my name and I could see my friend Dan (who had smoked me on this race, the word BEAST does not adequately describe his performance that day) clapping and waiting was just awesome.

This was a learning experience, and right of passage for me into triathlons racing, and a spiritual awakening as to the possibilities of where I can really push myself mentally and physically. I thank GOD for this finish and look forward to bringing a new level of fitness, determination and emotional fortitude to the next race.

Jeffrey “Previously Fat Guy”