Monday, October 15, 2012
My theory is that if you try something in training; it could be "just another work-out" but if something "works" in a race - it WORKS!
Well, my usual pre-race nutrition wasn't an option as every bike shop in town was closed and at the Toronto Bike Show; so I had to make due with what I found at a local nutrition shop.
Larabar is pretty much always part of my breakfast. The green apple ones to be specific.
* this is posted from my mobile device, need to fill in more details at later date *
Found it didn't give me the tunnel vision some EAS and coffee does so I likely won't be using it again.
Nice and light. Looked very natural coming out of the package. Generally I mix 1 gel with 4 parts water in a flask and sip between 10km & 12km markers. Over time I've found this takes away the sticky mouth I get with anything other than plain GU.
The Raspberry was actually a little "seedy" and that was a bit annoying.
Sent on the go via mobile device.
Thursday, October 11, 2012
Training didn't carry through as planned; although it was all to set-up for 'next year'.
Needed to carry a heavier workload in 2012 to set-up for a lighter one in 2013 to focus more on the World Du Champs; well, at least that was the plan.
Not too sure how this one is going to go, but I have my last 'quick' work out today. 6k with three hard k's in the middle to see where the legs are at... Then Sunday will just be a suffer fest!
Saturday, September 8, 2012
*Disadvantages*: It's WET
Puddles - cars seem to love splashing in them as much as kids and "don't notice" you running.
Plants get your legs and shorts wet or drip on you (I like trail running).
Muck stuck in your shoe tread (hate that).
*Advantages*: it's CLEAN
Air - maybe its because I live in Toronto, but I always feel the air is easier to breathe after a good rain.
Fresh Smell - its own natural motivation.
Time - most people who would run in the morning, get too busy and the trails are delightfully e m p t y.
Temperature - at least here the temp dips a good 8C from normal. A couple cloudy hours leave enough time to get a cool run in before the sun's back out!
Sent on the go via mobile device. www.supergosam.com
Friday, August 24, 2012
Doesn't affect my world, but I really like his closing;
Going forward, I am going to devote myself to raising my five beautiful (and energetic) kids, fighting cancer, and attempting to be the fittest 40-year old on the planet.
Not sure who's going to challenge him, but in 10 years I might want to throw my hat in the ring ;)
Last year I ran a 1:45:53 in my first 'official' attempt at the 21.1km distance. While that effort felt amicable, my loving wife - who registered us for the event online, decided to put me in the 1:30 category to "push me" - Thanks Sweetie :p
In looking at my Duathlon times, my run definitely needs some work so a kick in the pants isn't the worst thing for me. With having a bit of base following the Toronto Triathlon Festival (Canadian Duathlon Championships), and three weeks of vacation (with very little running), it's been interesting to put together a running program to help me peak for race day (Oct 14, 2012) .
My plan consists of a combination of the wildly popular Runner's World 1:30 Half Marathon Training Plan, Toronto Waterfront Half Marathon 1:30 Training Plan, both condensed to 8 weeks with what I can realistically fit in my schedule. The people running 1:30 are obviously quicker than I am, so hopefully this works!
SuperGo Sam's 8 Week Half Marathon Training Plan: Week 1
The plan is to start decent shape, and ease into it. Looking at where everyone else is on their 12 week training plans though, we may need to tighten the curve a little.
Monday - 5km
Tuesday - 5km
800 x 3 (2:50 pace) - or whatever feels very quick to you
400m recovery walk / job between sets or 3 mins; whichever comes first
* I do my 800m workouts on the road with my Garmin Edge 500 GPS. The distance is more inconsistent than running on the track, but it's a little more realistic for me as I'll be racing on the road. If the track were less than 4km away, and open when I want to run (7am), I'd likely be on the track.
Wednesday - off
(Commuted to work by bike, 30km total)
Thursday - 8km
5k @ 13km/hr (4:35/km)
1500m cool down
(Commute to work by bike, 15km)
Friday - 15km
Steady easy pace; "getting in the miles"
(15k bike, easy)
Friday, August 17, 2012
The EMAIL I've been waiting six years for is finally in my inbox! Now, not to be coy, but I've received many of these, six in fact, but this one is special. Since hitting the wall in 2006, I stepped back from racing, but I've always missed it. Now that we're becoming friends again, it's super exciting, like it's the first time! Even though I'm not trying to get my pro card, or racing U23, opening this email made me feel like a kid again :)
Congratulations!! In one year’s time, you will be representing Canada at the 2013 ITU World Duathlon Championships!
Joined by the best duathletes in Canada, you will be racing against the top age group duathletes from around the world. The ITU World Championships is not just about the competition, it’s also about the atmosphere and new friendships you will forge.
Age Group Teams
Official Announcement of Ottawa Hosting the 2013 World Duathlon Age Group Championships
Aug 10 - 11, 2013
International Triathlon Union 2013 Duathlon World Championship Event Listing (missing lots of info)
(Photo Copyright Triathlon Canada - Team Canada - 2008)
Check out the Scott Foil I raced on to qualify for the 2013 World Championships and a couple race photos here.
Wednesday, August 15, 2012
While part of me wishes this was a joke, it's not.
And the website makes it better; corny.de
Recently my wife and I were on vacation in Prague, and I needed some snacks for the way home.
As there was only one little, slightly larger than convenience store, grocery shop, we picked up some sustenance there. As there wasn't a large selection of cereal bars; I grabbed what I could get.
We ended up flying KLM home and they fed us decently well (even though I had to ask for snacks twice, there was always something). So today I was in the office and a co-worker commented, so I thought I'd share.
To be fair, it was quite delicious. And it had an expiry date of a year from date produced. I appreciated that, don't see many bars with that these days. Can't read the nutritional value, nor ingredients, but it had hazelnut and chocolate; all I really cared about!
Monday, August 13, 2012
There's a special bond that happens between a bike and a rider the first time they race together.
Well, this may not be true at the pro level where they go through 5-10 bikes a season, but when you're paying for everything you see, it's a special moment when you see your creation works. Having only had this bike for a couple of weeks before race day, I was pretty excited to see what we could do together.
With the help of Racer Sportif and some old friends, I was able to put together a bike that likes me almost as much as I like it :) It's definitely not the most comfortable bike I've ever ridden, but I think together we can make it the fastest! For it's first race (report) it accelerated out of transition like a rocket ship, handled superbly weaving in and out of traffic, climbed FANTASTIC, shifted great, and on the downhills I was still passing everything in sight :)
Frame: 2012 Scott Foil 40 (58cm)
Handlebars: Easton EC90 Aero
Tape: Sram Gold
Stem: Easton EC90
Shifters: Sram Red
Aerobars: Profile T2+
Front Hydration: Torhans Aero 30
Front / Rear Der: Sram Red
Crankset: Sram Red Black 53/39
Cassette: Sram Red 11-23
Pedals: Look Keo Carbon
Wheels: Easton EC90 Aero
Tires: Challenge Criterium // Skewers: Salsa Ti // Saddle: Fizike Arione Carbon
More photos available at on my new Picasa Web Album.
One interesting fact about this bike; Olympic Distance Duathlon's are 10k run, 40k bike, 5k run. This bike supported me so well and was so energy efficient, my 5k run pace, was as fast as my first 10k.
A lot of people have asked why I race on a road bike when I race triathlons. Truth be told, a bit part of it is that I can only afford 1 bike, and living in Toronto, there's only room for one. That said, the technology behind Aero Road Bikes has improved so much, there's likely less than two minutes difference between a super aero bike and mine. As the rider makes up 80+% of the aerodynamics, I can still get myself into a more aero / more powerful position.
My first choice was a Cervelo S5 - I've ALWAYS wanted a Cervelo but they're so dang expensive, and soooo many people here have one. As I started exploring my options the technology behind other aero road bikes, the Scott design struck me as really intuitive. My first "fast" bike was a 2004 Scott CR1 LTD with Dura Ace (Saunier Duval) and it was amazingly fast. However it was an incredibly stiff bike and made training rides a little sore. In its defence it did weigh close to 14lbs, I likely got the wrong size, and I thought the Selle Italia 135g saddle was the only one I could ride :p
Being awestruck by Mark Canvedish last TdF aboard a Foil helped peak my interest further. (Ok, Mark could do it on just about any bike he chooses, and this year Peter Sagan was on a round tubed, light weight Cannondale and still rocked: training = winning, I get that). However with Scott, the Foil technology is smart, light and smart. Instead of having a bunch of sharp angled tubes, they all work together. Personally I don't think I "felt" the aero, but I certainly didn't feel drag. And as only two bikes passed me, and I passed a lot of $10k+ tri bikes, we were doing okay.
The one thing about this bike that was key for me was the responsiveness. Like my sister says with her BMW vs my Hyundai, "when I push the pedal, it goes, no lag", and that's exactly what the Foil does. You stamp up a hill and she goes, you need to shift down to spin, and it's right there with you. The front end handling is crisp and exactly what you want to weave your way out of a congested transition area. Over all, excellent, I'm incredibly happy with my purchase.
Aerodynamics: Always an important factor I did what I could -
56mm deep wheelset // Aeor Helmet // Clean Up Front End // Aero Position
My choice of aerobars is a little archaic. These are the same Profile T2+'s that I raced in my speedy 2005 days. However for a road bike; they're the most adjustable clip-ons I've found. There are some other options out there that are a good 1/2 pound lighter but without as much adjustment.
Everything else on this bike is pretty standard, nothing too fancy one way or another. One thing is certain, it was much more comfortable riding the Easton carbon tubular wheels than my every day training wheels, made such a difference, I gotta get me another pair of these to roll down Dixon Road.
The two point five things I might change on this bike for next year:
Between the Arms Bottle - the roads on the course were so crap, even with the double splash guard and, I still got splashed and the crazy bumps cost me my AeroFlow Straw Housing (Torhans 30 Review)
Downtube Water Bottle - with how much I drink I definitely need two; so either I need an aero bottle option, or to find a way to get this bottle lower.
Aerobars - if I can find something lighter and as adjustable, I would consider a swap.
SO... if you're looking for a bike that can be your road bike, and a pretty speedy racer for Triathlons, I highly recommend the Scott Foil. It worked for me, and didn't do too shabby in the Olympics either ;)
More Photos of my bike available on Picasa -- Race Photo images copyright My Sports Shooter - Mike Cheliak Photography
Saturday, August 11, 2012
363 days from today, amateur (age group athletes) from around the world will be lining up in Ottawa for the 2013 World Duathlon Championships, and I'll be one of them :)
A little part of me wishes the WDC's were still going to be hosted in Spain, as that would give me an extra six weeks to prepare. However, in light of Duathlon being added to the World Games for our sports Elite Athletes, I am very glad that Triathlon Canada stepped up to welcome the Age Group Athletes!
So, here we go. We've officially proven that SuperGo Sam can ride again. Now it's time to figure out if I can ride FAST.
Sunday, July 22, 2012
A full race report will come soon enough, but on a touch screen, let's just get it out there...
1) Congrats to Kevin Smith!
Sorry I didn't get a chance to say Hi. We raced together on Team Canada U23 team in Belgium in 2003 and he's very much still got "it".
2) Special thanks to my awesome wife, family and friends who supported me out on the race course... Great to have you guys there.
3) Team Kattouf is officially in Canada. Thanks to Cameron Dorn for a great training and racing plan.
4) I was racing a ROAD bike. (Thanks Racer Sportif Toronto for setting me up on a Scott Foil40)
5) See photo.
6 - years since the last time I "raced" at Canada Du Nats.
Saturday, July 21, 2012
Friday, July 20, 2012
In always wanting to learn more about operating my nutrition more efficiently, I turn to the experts, and then conduct my own tests. Dr. Allen Lim, founder of Skratch Labs, is regarded as a distance nutrition expert and I've been trying to glean from a few things he publishes. This video looks at how some of us try to take in too many calories via hydration.
Taking this new found info in mind that crates an 80 calories of powder to 500ml of water is good for the egg, I've been devising my own lower calorie yet efficient drink mix.
Base - 400ml filtered water
Carbs - 250ml organic apple juice
(Approximately 120 calories)
1/2 teaspoon honey, 1/2 teaspoon pure Canadian Maple Syrup
1/2 teaspoon organic sea salt
Combine, stir, freeze.
Now I understand "frozen" drinks on the bike can be bad, however, with finding the cool = lower heart rate, I'm still experimenting. I haven't cramped, bonked, or gotten slower since running with ice, so I'm going to take the plunge and try it on race day!
Time for bed, only two more sleeps to go.
Thursday, July 19, 2012
The temperature was pretty much a perfect 21.4C (71F) all year long and it was incredible.
Now living in Toronto, Canada - Summer 2012 has had temperatures in the low 30's (86F) and humidity of 90+%
With getting ready for Nationals in a week's time, I've been trying to train at the same time as I race (7-10am) and it's still hot. In my work-up 10k's, I've been noticing my heart rate increasing and my speed decreasing, yet my perceived effort isn't too different. Thus began the research.
Livestrong.com explains that perspiration is the body's first attempt at self temperature regulation, however, when my HR is in the 190's sweating seems to do very little other than magnify the sun's rays and cook my white skin. The next step is for your circulatory system to get involved and your blood vessels start to dilate, lowering the pressure in your veins helping lower the temperature. I'm not sure how long this works for, or at what temperatures, but I need more.
Super Tech Solution:
Basically it's a machine you put your hand in that helps cool your blood before it returns to your core, thus lowering your body temperature and heart rate. It's a little more technical than that, you'll have to check their website if you really care. The $3k price tag scared me off. While it might work for baseball and footballers, but I haven't seen too many on the sidelines. And it definitely won't work for the run, which is where my heart rate skyrockets. So for $3k in "techie" dollars, I'll take a serious look at an altitude tent :p
Rocket Science Sports: 20BPM Race suit seems to be a novel idea. Claims to reflect 50% of radiant heat and help lower your heart rate 20 bpm - via vibration and temperature control. And at 1/10 the cost of CoreControl... and is functional in a racing environment... it just might work, for next year. AND these guys appear to have Sweat Science, not just gimmicks on their side.
- Proprietary Reflective Fabric reflects sunlight and radiant heat up to 50% more than dark-colored garments. It also shields UV rays with SPF50. This statement makes me wonder if 'any' white suit will have a similar effect?
- First company to design a race suit with vortex technology. Vortex generators reduce drag in water by 6%. That's cool - I'll keep that in mind if I add TRI to my resume.
- Dimpled SCS coated leg panels for improved aero/hydrodynamics. In following this years TdF, I didn't hear Bradley Wiggins suit being dimpled, or aero helmets being dimpled yet for that matter... However Nike dimpled a suit for Usanian Bolt this year, so we'll see!
Update: I like the RocketScience UK site better; more pics and graphs on success of suit.
While these are all great; this blog is about SuperGo Sam Riding AGAIN - meaning there's not the biggest budget in the world to work with.
Gel flasks full of ice (water / sports drink) $3 each
Good for when you want to get something cold in you (with a bit of electrolytes).
Maybe this is the poor mans version of the CoreControl. So far, I've done 3 runs with 2 of them now, and I've found my HR about 10 beats lower. Maybe I'm more concentrated, drinking cooler liquids... but it feels like it works. Not sure if I'm quite ready to use this in a race yet, but it's SO hot, I feel it might make it's debut next weekend.
On average I would say these ice packs last about 20 minutes. Now in a Duathlon, you have a 10k run, so for me, that's almost double 20 mins. Empty flasks can be consumed and dumped in the pockets, or a disposable option could be to use plastic baggies full of ice and toss them when they're melted.
Will help reduce weight AND help more heat escape.
(not yet tested, will try tomorrow) Even if it's a mental edge, I'll take it!
Coolest Racing Uniform Possible:
Well, blue is the best I have so that's what we're going with. In future maybe I'll shop for a white one to save myself a few degrees of heat.
Ice in Race Beverage:
There's usually about 2 hours from the time I leave my hotel to the time the race starts, so I cram in as much frozen liquid as possible. (It all usually melts by the time I get on the bike, but it's still cooler than if it started at room temp)
Sunday, July 15, 2012
3/4 of ride in aero position
Rocked my Race Day hydration set-up (more or less).
Found the straw of my Torhans stuck up a little to high - working on lowering bottle.
Tested another rendition of my sports beverage formula - this one felt awesome, refreshing and kept me going. Going to test on a run to see how it goes! #allnatural
Saturday, July 14, 2012
Friday, July 13, 2012
He's the only Male triathlete to medal at the Olympics TWICE
He's one only 13 athlete's to have competed at the Olympics, in all of the triathlon's EVER
He already does three sports in less than 2 hours
So why not Simon Whitfield to represent Canada and carry in our flag at London 2012!
Congratulations Simon, we're proud of you and can't wait to watch you lead our country's finest into the Games and tear up the race course
GO CANADA GO!
Official CBC Story
Wednesday, July 11, 2012
My first Olympic Duathlon e v e r was Canadian Du Champs in Kananaskis, AB in 2000. At 18 years of age I was competing alongside 2012 Olympians Simon Whitfield and Brent McMahon - both absolutely awesome dudes. Our paths have crossed multiple times over the years at National and World Championship qualifier events. With Simon being at my first race on my journey 'back' - 12 years later - it adds a few butterflies. Simon said his dad always says, "don't to get rid of them (butterflies), make them fly in formation" - guess that's what keeps him crossing the line first :)
With Tour de France on TV, the 2012 London Olympic Games just a few weeks away, (the St. George Station Subway Station) there's some great motivation for training and pushing your limits. However, I haven't "raced" for six years... Do I remember what this feels like? Can I run MY race? Only time will tell.
The above photo is the cover of the Toronto Triathlon Festival website. Just in case you needed some motivation to kick your own butt in gear. This photo - is Simon Whitfield: CAN - doing his classic, come from behind sprint victory at the Hy-Vee Olympic Triathlon Challenge in 2010. I'd be that excited if I won $200k as well! (just without the muscles or long hair)
Friday, June 8, 2012
I've been upping my vitamin C intake to try and fight it and stay healthy, but after my overgear work out on Thursday I lost the battle. From 6-11pm I was in bed sweating out a crazy fever. And now I have a ridiculously sore throat. Went to the Doctor, and his genius advice was, "its a nasty virus going around; drink lots of water, rest, and take cold medication". He thought my throat looked like I might be developing strep...really and all you can say is drink some water?
We have a shelf / fridge full of orange products and other fruit we've been eating, and today my wife upped the ante. Home made Korean based chicken soup. (This soup *almost* makes getting sick worth it)
So anyhow, this is now officially cramping my workout schedule and I don't know what to do. I can still breathe, swallowing SUCKS, and I feel weak. Should I spin on the bike, train through, rest???
Monday, May 28, 2012
And what better time build a swell of support and pride for Canadian Sport than after Vancouver 2010. The Canadian response was pandemic. Like nothing I've experienced before. I know where I was when Syd the Kid netted the gold medal goal. I remember watching Jon Montgomery celebrate his gold in true Canadian style, and the world media attention that aroused. Got the maple leaf, got the sweater, got the t-shirt #WEBELIEVE
In 1997 when I was 15, I moved to Winnipeg, MB to pursue skating. Mom and dad stayed in Beausejour about an hour away, but with needing to be at the rink at 7am 4x per week and 6:30pm 2x per week its not like I was "by myself" much. My mom worked as a waitress, pretty exclusively to support my skating. To say it was expensive was an understatement. (If I spent as much on tri as they spent on skating...) Anyhow - the point came where we needed some help because the dreams were bigger than the bills.
And that's when I became a marketing major. Sales had always come easy to me (ill do a V2 of this post with some stories - but yes, as a KID sales came easy), so I figured I'd try to sell some of me. Pro athletes did it, why not me. An appeal letter and a copy of a local full page news article covering my exploits was sent to ten businesses I had connection with. Either my parents knew the owners, I'd taught their kids how to skate, something.
And wouldn't you know, most responded positively.
That year including bursaries I raised over $4000 to support my Sport. The money helped big time, but not to the level the emotional support did. The cards, the letters, they rocked my world. Living away from home I felt lonely, like I was on my own, like people from my small town didn't get it.
Today I'm back at my parent's home going through some old boxes and came across this letter and it hit those same heart strings it did fifteen years ago. I don't remember why I gave Dana a package. She could have been the real estate agent that sold my parents their nice little bungalow on Joyce Street, or it could have been that her office was next to a greasy diner I washed dishes at one summer. Either way Dana believed. And when I went to the Canada Games in 1999, I brought her letter with me.
Good luck with your skating -
Your maturity and confidence is way beyond your years! I believe you've got the qualities it takes to become not only successful in your sport; but also in life! Keep focused and AIM HIGH!
YOUR WORDS can make a life long impact. It doesn't even take a card.
Wednesday, May 23, 2012
Thursday, May 17, 2012
Or do they not read the description or write-up that says FRAME ONLY?
Seriously "oh I didn't notice it wasn't for the whole bike" is just saying you're a #hipster. (in which case I'm not that interested in selling you my bike anyhow)
Thursday, April 26, 2012
Innovate: to introduce as or as if new
Replicate: being the same as another (duplicate)
Sometimes the line between the two is pretty fine. Can something look the similar and be totally different, or if it looks the same, does it work the same? While I enjoy watching the patent legal battles between Samsung and Apple... this is something cycling runs into all the time... everything is made from the same big five carbon manufacturers so how do you be different? Slowtwitch recently did a great article on "Patents Effects on Tri Products". Having been part of the cycling community the last 12 years, I like to notice when somebody tries to bring something genuinely new to the table.
A recent "innovation" has been the 'aero road bike'. For me, it's the absolute best of both worlds and it seems like each company has one now and it's tough to see who's best.
Cervelo forged the path with the Soloist. For me this the S1 is one of the fastest bikes I've ever written back in 2002... loved it. Now with the new carbon offering of the S5, it "looks" the most aero, but is it really the best? The price point is certainly as deep as the rear wheel cut-out and for me, something of this price should be ready to rock a road race or a tri 'out of the box'. However the needing to buy a second seat post with a steeper seat angle is a little bit annoying. For $2800 for a 1250g frame they can't throw in an extra seat post (let alone $5,900 for the VWD FRAME)? It doesn't end the world but would be a bit nice.
Here's the next most famous / newest aero road bikes:
BH - G5 // Bianchi - Oltre // Blue - AC // Boardman - AR Road // Canyon - Aero CF // Felt - AR Series // Fuji - SST // Litespeed - C1 // MCipollini - RB1000 // Kestrel - Talon SL // Ridley - Noah // Specialized - Venge // Scott - Foil // Stevens - SLR // Time - Ulteam //
Personally, I have a Fuji SST 2.0 from 2009 and it has served me well. The fit hasn't always been my best friend. Usually I like to race a 56cm frame, but was often on a 120 - 130 stem, so opted for a 59cm frame to try and "have more frame under me". This lead to two learning experiences. 1) if it ain't broke don't fix it... 2) Fuji is an innovator. Check out this seat post - moves the seat clamp from 73 - 78 degrees. So while I can race road at 74, when it's tri time, I can move myself ALL the way forward and save the legs for the last run. #genius
What do you think of Aero Road bikes? Got one? Want one?
Monday, April 9, 2012
Well most days, but I find myself in an interesting dilemma I've NEVER faced before.
I don't want to leave my trainer!
Living in Toronto, training sucks; traffic, hipsters, street car tracks, even High Park has stop signs. Almost daily I thank God for the 2.4km traffic free walking path by my house that is a great start to any run, but I don't really want to do 20 laps on my bike :)
Yesterday I had a chat with my coach Cameron Dorn (Team Kattouf) discussing the benefits of staying ON the trainer! My old school PTSL+ and my Garmin Edge 500 make great training partners and I often leave with my towel more than a little damp.
Its almost time to start commuting, but maybe ill stick with the train another month :)
Tuesday, January 24, 2012
What the heck - it's supposed to be winter - and I got to run OUTSIDE! Without freezing my @$$ off, I was quite happy. My shoes were happy too because they felt like I finally quit cheating on them with my bike; who remains perched on the indoor trainer for winter months.
Sadly, I developed a blister at the 5km mark... likely due to the wetness. Cheating always comes back to bite you - #lifelessons #cheatingalwayssucks
Another thing I want to quit is cheating on my training plan.
I can make some killer training plans, but after a few months the motivation wanes and I'm back on the couch. #fail
2012 - No More Cheating is officially added to the list.
Saturday, January 14, 2012
5 min upright x 5 mins in aero x 4
Each set increase resistance one gear on the trainer.
My current aero bar set-up is a Profile-Design T2+ from 2005.
At 483 claimed grams it's certainly not the heaviest, nor lightest clip-on, but for my beloved Fuji Team Issue (2005) it dialed in my fit perfectly. Now that I'm on a new ride, time will tell if these are still the bars for me!