Week 1 Training Blog, Ride to Conquer Cancer

April 4, 2009

I’ve just celebrated my 2 year anniversary of completing chemotherapy with a clean set of x-rays and bloodwork. Sweet.

After finishing chemotherapy at the end of March 2007 I asked my oncologist how I would be changed…whether I would still be able to run and scubadive and cycle the way I used to.  Except for Scuba, which is a maybe as one of the drugs in my chemo regimen has the potential to create scarring in the lungs, I was told that not only could I expect to return to normal health but that I should set my sites on being in better shape than before chemo.  Thank God for doctors who understand how to motivate people.

You can imagine how inspiring a thing this is to hear for a guy who had been competitive all his life.  Now 2 years later I am ready to test this out.  My objectives this year are to:

1.Beat my PR in the 10k : 41m37s

2. Beat my PR in the Olympic Triathlon, set after my first diagnosis but before chemo: 2h38mins

3. Ride from Vancouver to Seattle

4. Raise over $50,000 for Cancer Research as part of Team Alberto

5. Drop 20 lbs in the 10 weeks between now and the Ride June 20th

I’ll need to lose some of the weight I put on after chemo if I am to hope to meet those objectives.

A quick word on technology.  I’m a bit of a nerd when it comes to tracking and performance measurement.  I use a Garmin 205 GPS wristwatch to track distance, time speed and elevation both running and on the bike.  I also have the Nike+ adapter for my iPod Nano and upload my running distances and times to www.nikeplus.com.  The on-line site for Nike+ is very cool and easy to use, and the Garmin fills in on the bike. 

My friend’s Shelley and Colleen have been using their iPhone in exactly the same way…so phone plus GPS plus internet plus cool apps?  Yes I’m getting an iPhone.

The reason I track time and distance is simply that it is the only way you will be able to identify improvement as you continue to train…an important motivator.  For mid to long distance running it also helps me to develop an intuitive feel for pace so that you don’t end up running too fast or too slow in the early stages.

By the way…am going to set an appointment with a respirologist at VGH now that it’s been 2 years to see whether in fact I can go back to Scuba safely.  Will let you know how that goes.  Here are my training entries for the weekend…but after the long rain of Vancouver winter it certainly didn’t feel like training. 

Sunday: 9.2k Run, time 52:09,  5:39/km

Ran along the Seawall to Jericho.   First real run of the year outdoors and it felt fantastic to be outside…long and slow.  Had to run through a bit of lower back stiffness as I got used to being back on the road but it felt fine after a while.

Saturday: 57k Ride, time 2:27:28, ave. 23 km/hr t

Kitsilano to Steveston.  Excellent day of riding out in the  spring sunshine with Team Alberto. Dean, Kathy, Craig and Liz.

Current Weight: 210 lbs. Target weight at week end – 208

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