Here we go!

Today is the first day of my 20 week training for the Ironman St. George 70.3. This is a half iron distance, but on the same course I did my full ironman on in 2011. Since then they changed the St. George event to a half distance due to the lack of participation. They like to sell out the events and it wasn’t happening in St. George due to the difficulty. I think Ironman should have kept it as a full and marketed the difficulty rather than run away from it…I have always contended, there are Ironman and then there are St. George Ironman.
Anyways, my training will last for 20 weeks and mostly consist of 3 swims, 3 bikes and 3 runs a week. I have been regularly swimming, along with coaching the squids (my daughter’s junior team, not my buddies). I haven’t biked much but feel confident I can get up to speed fairly quickly, although the training will be in my basement on the trainer. Running is the challenge. If you don’t know, I broke my femur over a year ago and still struggle some. Last week after a six mile run and then some really frigid temperatures, I had to pull out my cane to get around. My hip hadn’t hurt like that for a long time. I am scheduled to run a half-marathon in four weeks. I’ll be able to do it but do fear the possibility of getting injured.
I need to get in shape and lose weight. I weighed in at 195 and plan to be at 175 for the race. Thats one pound a week.
Let’s do this. Im using this as my journal and will continue to post some pretty mundane things.

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The downward spiral

I found this unpublished post from my bike accident last April. I will publish it now with bad grammar and all (remember, I was in pain and drugged up).

April 18,2012-
I’m stuck in bed this morning at 3:00 am and am going through loads of pain, waiting for more meds to kick in. This blog is my only outlet Seriously, what the heck has happened over the last 36 hours. It was a good day of work on Monday as I was able to progress on some big projects. After the previous week of rain, I was excited to get home and go out for a bike ride. There was a small chill in the air and I was even more excited to wear my brand new 2XU long sleeve jersey which is designed for brisk weather. I headed up to the Bingham copper mine, the same course as my upcoming Olympic distance triathlon in June.
I felt pretty good and instead of turning around at the peak of the hill (7.5 miles), I decided to go down the other side so I could train going up it for the race. A I reached the bottom I turned into the entrance of butter field canyon so I could reach an even 8 miles. I slowed way down to make a hairpin turn…and then my immediate life changed.
There was a bunch of loose gravel and my front tire slipped right out from underneath me. I couldn’t get my foot loose and every bit of weight landed directly on my left hip. I knew immediately that there was no way I was going to be able to ride home. I was on my back staring into the sky thinking this could be bad but maybe I just hit a funny bone or a nerves I tried to turn my ankle sharp streaks of excruciating pain shot from my knee to hip. I pulled my phone out of my newly scuffed up jersey and called Emily. I knew she would be finishing up her spin session at the gym and probably wouldn’t answer yet. I also knew that she had to pick up Alexis and Nicholas from their sports activities and she wouldn’t be able to get me for at least 30 minutes.
I sat with my bike sprawled on the ground knowing that someone would come by and I was slightly embarrassed so I would want them to move on. The pain wasn’t bad when I wasn’t moving so thought I was mostly ok. A trio of cyclists came riding done butter field canyon and stopped to see how I was doing. I told them I crashed and my wife was coming to get me. They told me they weren’t going to leave until she got there. I was still embarrassed and didn’t want to waste their time but they weren’t moving. They picked me up off the ground to see if I could stand. As soon as I placed the slightest amount of weight the pain shot through my entire leg. The pressure of my leg just hanging hurt like hell as well.
I knew that Emily wouldn’t be able to get me into the car and that I was probably going to the hospital so I was glad they stayed. What great guys, they spent 30 minutes with me as we talked cycling stories. One guy pulled out hit mini med kit and gave me an ibuprofen. When Emily got there she was slightly surprised to see I was in such bad shape. To this point the pain was bearable because I hadn’t moved much, but now it was time for them to get me in the car. The guys lifted me up with my left leg dangling and the pain hit me so hard that a small litany of curse words escaped my mouth, fortunately the third guy ran to my aid and gave my leg support. I was facing into the front seat not knowing how I was going to get in. They spun me around and I was leaning against the seat without the leg support fora small second. I can’t explain how painful it was. With streams of tears coming down my face they pushed me further in the seat and tried to lift my leg into the vehicle. I could not help whatsoever and any attempt at supporting my own leg would cause overwhelming pain. My cycling shoes kept getting caught on the door and as my leg jostled around I cringed and tried to hold back more Tera’s of excruciating pain. I didn’t want Emily too see how bad of shape I was in. Finally I was in the car and the guys helped load my bike I the back seat. They removed the shoes, which we probably should have done first. I was trapped as we headed off to the hospital I wanted to thank the guys but didn’t want the to see me crying. I also didn’t want Emily to see the pain I was in.

We arrived at the hospital within 5-10 minutes. Emily went inside to get a wheelchair and some help for extraction. That was round 2. I was in major fear because my left leg was so useless, just the slightest jostling was overbearing. The poor nurse helping me into the chair had no idea the pain I was in. As I took my leg out of the car and the complete support wasn’t there, I screamed out in pain. The tears of pain began again and I forced myself into the wheel chair. My adrenaline was still running. They helped lift my foot the two inches onto the footpad and wheeled me in.

My body is experiencing the depths of hell tearing it asunder.

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Small Slice of Fingers

I have learned to always be careful when packing your wife’s suitcase. As we were getting ready to leave California last Friday night I was packing up all the suitcases. Em had a plastic bag with her shampoo and conditioner that wouldn’t fit in the pocket. I proceeded to shove the bag as hard as I could deep into the pocket.

Unfortunately, she had also left her razor in the bag. Well, seeing as how the razor is extremely sharp and mostly clean, I my pain receptors were not registering with my brain that the flesh of my ring finger was getting torn away. Not until the razor hit so deep into my finger did I realize that something wasn’t quite right. It initially felt like a needle was puncturing my finger. I pulled my hand away and saw blood.

I ran to the sink and the blood was flowing. It wouldn’t stop and it stung when I stuck it under the water. It was hard to see how deep it was because of the blood. My brother stuck and band-aid on it and before we were able to leave the entire bandage was saturated with blood. I stuck another bandage on and we took off to the Primm.

The pressure of the bandage had helped cease some of the bleeding but as soon as I removed the bandage the blood flowed again. over the next day each time I would use my finger when grabbing something I could feel the wound open up. Finally I decided to super-glue the wound closed. It has worked great. I guess I’ll have to see what happens when the glue wears off. It could take quite a long time for this to heal.

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Aw nuts! That hurt!

How my vasectomy was like an Ironman

I always need to warn potential readers that my posts are probably completely inappropriate, but you clicked on it.

I am going to jump right into this, starting at the pre-consult. I was sitting in the office and the doctor walked in. “So, we’ll bring you in, put you in the stirrups, and then I’ll begin to shave you,” said the doctor.
Wow, that is something I would have never thought I would ever hear. And I get to pay for that? That is where the comparison to Ironman begins…”and you pay for that?” The second most popular question I had while training for the Ironman after “how far is it?,” was “and you pay for that?” Until now I didn’t quite understand why people would ask me that, and now I get it. Why would someone pay for that uncomfortable and painful experience?

A few days later I was on my way to the actual procedure with some queeziness in my stomach. I turned to Emily and told her that I felt the exact same way as I did when I slowly walked towards the swim start of Ironman St. George seven months earlier. Thoughts of what am I doing, this is going to hurt, is it really worth it, this is stupid, it is going to be torture, my body will be mutilated…and it is all voluntary. Every thought can be said for either event…an Ironman or a vasectomy.

While sitting in the waiting room I sat nervous as I was about to start my big endeavor. I turned to Emily and asked if she wanted to run away with me, avoid it all together. She smiled just as she had when she dropped me off in St. George to head to the lake for my swim.

After a few minutes the nurse called my name and I headed back into the procedure rooms. My stomach was turning. The nurse gestured toward the restroom and asked me if I needed to go one last time. Any of us who have done a triathlon and marathons know what it is like to go to the bathroom one last time before the gun goes off. Luckily there was no line for this bathroom and it wasn’t a port-a-potty…if it had been I might have stayed in there for a good long while.

I went into the procedure room and was told to get ready. The nurse left as I dressed down to my shirt and socks. I sat on the table, covered myself with a giant paper towel and waited. In all reality I was still covering more skin than many of the triathlon shirts and shorts that are out there.

I was still thinking about running away. I bet I could get dressed and bail before the doctor makes his way in…but what if he opens the door just as I am heading out, that would be so embarrasing…I’m stuck now. Just like with the Ironman, while treading water at the start line, I thought about turning around and stopping the entire thing before it ever began. But I knew I was already at the start line and there was no quitting now…oh crud…the gun just went off…i’m in it now, and I started swimming. In the doctor’s office, all of a sudden, I heard a knock at the door, it opened and it was go time.

From this point forward it really had nothing to do with an Ironman, except that it was what the Doc and I talked about the entire time while he was operating down there.

Friends of mine had said they were given a Valium before their procedure to calm their nerves. I was not given the option, and when the Doc took the needle to inject some numbing stuff it was quite painful. And then there was the constant feeling of a kick to the nuts as he worked down there.

I think I’ll stop here and spare the details, but he did show me the pieces of the Vas that he cut out. For a split second I thought about asking to take a picture…but my gut told me not to, and believe me the pain in my gut was ruling any decisions at the moment.

I have spent the rest of the weekend in bed with ice packs. I’m still not feeling that great when I get up and move around. I think I’ll probably take a day off of work and make sure everything is good to go, so people don’t see me walking around so gingerly, as I was after Ironman.

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Take this…and like it!!!

Someone recently asked why I haven’t been blogging lately. Well, I have to be in the mood. “Why aren’t you in the mood,” one may ask. Well, I’m not in the mood to blog about it.

Ultimately if I was blogging, you would end up getting something like the following…
(A weak attempt at time-lapse of a scab healing after a bike accident during the Tour de Donut.)

…and no one wants that.

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70.3 for the fourth time

Tomorrow morning I will be venturing out on my fourth Half-Ironman Triathlon. For those who aren’t familiar with the distance, it is 1.2 mile swim, 56 mile bike and 13.1 mile run. I am sure many of you think that this would be a piece of cake after completing Ironman St. George…and I have been thinking the same thing, which is why I have done little to no training. unfortunately with less than 12 hours until the start, I have come to a bad realization that I am completely out of shape. I have gained 25 pounds since May…I know that I was way too light then, but seriously?…25 pounds? Pathetic!

I have been struggling big time and maybe, just maybe, this event tomorrow will kick me out of my funk. With my kids starting back in school I should have some more time to write, so look for a future post about my Post-PartIM depression.

My goal for tomorrow is not to suffer a DNF…hopefully I can finish under 6 hours, but it looks quite windy out there. The past two years there have been hail storms during the race, will we go 3 for 3?

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My pain in the … Hip

It’s been one week since my crash and what a pain, literally. My hip is still hurting and is very sore. (If details gross you out, stop reading now).

It seems like I have scabs on top of scabs, but now they are falling off as they get snagged on my clothes. It doesn’t feel good when that happens and I can’t do anything when I first feel it, except keep moving and let it rip. Then the juicy fluids that exist under great scabs and wounds starts seeping.
The most painful part of it is that the scabs try to keep everything rigid and in place, but the skin underneath is trying to stretch. The pain is quite brutal.

My knee suffers some of the same issues but it is not as juicy. Every time I get up to walk the skin tries to stretch and the scabs scream back “not so fast.”. After 3-4 steps it gives in and then starts feeling better, but do you realize how many times you get up everyday and start walking.

Some bruises started appearing a few days later on my thighs. I’m supposed to run a half marathon next weekend. It should be interesting. The scar tissue is deep.

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