Bob's Back!

What a crazy month! Please excuse the long absence between posts. September began with a fun race that two friends and I (Theresa and Bobby) entered in Denver, Colorado. It was an 8 hours of triathlon relay race. Neither of us had ever competed in something like this before so we thought it would provide us a fun way to end our race season. Did it ever! I have to say that if you ever have the chance to do something like this, do it! Besides the Muddy Buddy that Bobby and I did years ago, this event was probably the most fun I have had...and it was a race!

The concept was simple. Log in as many triathlons as possible in an 8 hour time period. Now, even though it was meant to be a fun race, the competitor in me couldn't help configuring splits. I figured our team could finish 8 tri's in the 8 hours. While a race of this nature requires some strategy, we did not have to rack our brains as much as the 24 hour athletes! The logistics of our race were much simpler. Our overall plan was to utilize each of our strengths and try to get a small rest break in between segments. Our plan proved to be very successful! I managed to avoid the water the entire 8 hours since I knew my other teammates were faster but I did end up doing more of the running legs...utilizing my strength! In fact, even after completing 60 miles of Leadville 2 weeks prior, I was still able to average 5:45-6:30 miles for the 2.9 mile runs. Not bad, eh?

We finished the 8 hours completing our goal of 8 total triathlon's, tied with another team who was about 10-12 years younger. However, we completed our 8 faster than them! Unfortunately, I had to run off to teach a cooking class to a high school cross country team but I got the phone call later than night from my teammates indicating that we took first place in our division. What a great way to wrap up an exciting day! Needless to say, we'll be back next year to defend our title!

One week later, I was flying the friendly skies, logging in roughly 16,000 miles in a 10 day period. My travels brought me to Jeju Island (where Ironman Korea is held) with a short layover in Osaka, Japan. After a quick day in Jeju, I was off to Beijing (actually Changping) China to attend the Beijing World Cup Triathlon Race and the first US Olympic qualifier.

In a total of 10 days away from home, I managed to have severe abdominal cramping for about 7 of them. Let's just say that I, along with other athletes, had some nutritional "challenges" in China. I took most precautions as I cooked most of my food and even though I did construct the menu during my stay, there were still some foods that would show up on the line that I could not begin to guess what they were. Outside of cooking oatmeal, rice and pasta in my hot pot, I was limited to eating peeled fruits (never eat a non-peeled fruit where the water quality is questionable), breads, pastas and jams. I thought I was safe but evidently that was not the case.

Once hitting home turf, it only took about 3 days to get my system regulated again. I switched back to my high fiber diet, drank a lot of good ole Colorado tap water and that seemed to do the trick!

My lessons for international travel are to carry a hot pot, international power converters, food and water. Remember, bottled water in foreign countries is not always safe. You need to be sure to check the seal first as sometimes the bottles are filled up with tap water and re-used!

My upcoming posts will shed some good tips on this nutritionally challenging time of the year that is sneaking up on us quickly so stay tuned...

Thanks for reading!

Coach Bob