Yo yo yo! The Crazy Ass Fans answered my horn call and came back in full force! Thanks to everyone for filling out the 2013 Kick Off Quiz. As promised, below are the answers, along with four key lessons I’ve learned in 2013 so far. And of course, the Picky Bar winners are named as well. Thanks everyone for reading, and let me know what you think via twitter, facebook, or comments below. Peace out!
Why haven’t written a blog in two months?
- I just got off a Carnival Cruise gone horribly wrong.
- I’ve been working a ton on 2013 sponsorship, raising capital for Picky Bars, getting ready to move to Bend and training my tush off.
- I’m lazy.
- A teeny tiny bit of 3, but mostly 2.
4 – Outside of some slight laziness, I have a lot of good excuses. Those #2 B things take a lot of time, and January was full of them. Lauren and I found a home to rent in Bend (moving in March, more later), I revised the Picky Bar business plan and financial model, and I finalized almost all of my sponsorship contracts for 2013 (more on that next week). Between all that and watching a lot of Boardwalk Empire, it was a busy January.
Where have I been?
- On a tropical island filming Survivor 47
- In a van, down by the river
- At training camp in San Francisco and Kona
3 – Over the past two years, we’ve learned that each time I train with a group, in front of a coach, I make a performance jump. Matt and I both feel that the next step in my career path is training under his watch more of the year. So I committed – I’ll spend all of January in SF, and 2 weeks of Feb in Kona. Lauren would come with me, we found a place to stay, and get after it for six weeks. I was excited and eagerly awaiting the new year.
How many times did I get sick during the month of January?
4 – Then….I got sick. Nasty sick. I took six days off the first week of January, and delayed San Francisco. Then five days after I moved down, it resurfaced. Another two days of no exercise. Five days later, again. I actually started a blog mid January but it was so depressing I couldn’t finish it. I’d made this big investment of time and energy to move to San Francisco for the month, and I spent 15 days of it sick.
How many hours of Boardwalk Empire did I watch in a 24 hour period while trying to recuperate?
3 – Which brings me to Lesson #1 of 2013 – True rest means more than no exercise, it also means no work. The first few weeks I was sick, I was smart enough to take days off of exercise, but I spent 8-10 hours a day on sponsorship stuff, or with my buddy Excel. While I got slightly better each time, my body never fully recovered from the illness. After the 3rd relapse, I made the conscious decision that I would skip my Saturday group ride with the Every Man Jack guys, and instead, I watched 10 episodes Boardwalk Empire – 2 on Friday night, and 8 on Saturday morning, which I logged on Strava. No email, no phone calls, no nothing. Just me and Nucky. Over the next few days I slowly added work and light exercise. Patience was the key, and it finally worked.
How good is Robin’s cooking?
- Pretty good
- REALLY GOOD OH MY GOD
4 – When Anthony and Robin DuComb generously offered to host Lauren and I, I knew we’d have a nice place to stay. What I didn’t know was that we’d also have a five star meal every night! Robin, thank you so much for your generous hospitality, and of course, your meatloaf.
How many hours total did Anthony wait for me while I was living with him and going to workouts with him during my three week stay in San Francisco?
- It’s hard to know for sure, but it’s probably on the order of days, not hours.
- You idiot, you just gave away the answer to #2!
3 – I didn’t realize until after I got to San Francisco and tried to integrate into the early morning purplepatch training schedule how slow I am at transitions. One morning, after Anthony had waited for me to go swim, then waited again to go run, I asked him to wait a little longer while I extended my cool down. He told me to just run to the coffee shop and meet him there. Then I showed up late, with no money. After walking around aimlessly for a few minutes, he graciously bought me my “foofy drink” (soy chai) and said he was impressed at how quickly we had digressed into a father/son relationship. Sorry for taking days off your life Anthony, and thanks so much for the awesome 4 weeks!
Why did Lauren leave San Francisco after 1.5 weeks?
- 8pm bed time, 4:30am wake up
- I get even gassier when I’m training a lot
- She wanted to “nest” our new Bend house
- All of the above
4 – About 12 days into camp, I learned another lesson. I’m not sure exactly how to describe it, so I’ll just say Lesson #2 – Integrating family into training camp isn’t easy, it requires lots of communication and balance. I’ve talked with some of the guys I look up to in the sport – Rasmus Henning, Chris Lieto, Tim Deboom – about how best to integrate family into tough training environments, and there is no easy answer. Lauren and I took a great crack at it, but when the 3rd round of sickness came, she decided it was best for both of us if she cruised back home. We argued about it a bit – I was frustrated, tired, sick, and felt like I was “giving up” on integrating her. There is a lot of stress on your body at training camp, and while family can support you, it can also add to it. It isn’t sustainable for us to segregate ourselves during every camp, but what we realized is that it’s ok to have space when needed. It doesn’t have to work perfectly in every situation. We can comfortable with that understanding as long as we try our best to integrate when we can, and also support each other when we cant. It’s a constant balance that we’ll continue working on before and after Lima Bean comes around.
Which of these potential baby names for Lima Bean got vetoed by Lauren?
- Max Power
- Lima Bean
- All of the above
4 – Seriously though, we call it Lima Bean already, let’s just make it official. Plus, I think it works for either gender.
How wrong was I about how easy it would be to use Twitter to thank people for donating while doing a very hot four hour trainer ride at Velo SF for the Challenged Athletes Foundation?
- Wrong as using a run on sentence as your question wrong
- Apricot jelly wrong
- 1+1 = 5 wrong
3 – When I decided last minute I was healthy enough to do the Challenged Athletes Foundation ride with Meredith, I felt I needed an incentive to get people to donate. So I thought, “I know, I’ll tweet out a thanks to everyone while I’m doing it! No big deal.” Big mistake. The ride was awesome, but 4 hours on the trainer in the heat is no joke, and I went out WAY too hard under Meredith’s inspirational coaching! I was so tired and could barely think straight much less look up the names on my phone, remember them, and then type them out on a sweat drenched touchscreen. So anyway, I screwed up, big time. So please accept my make up thank you here for your super generous donations – over $1800 total in just 2 days!
Sarah Cameto, Joe Garces, Terry Taylor, Greg Rousell, Carol Kozimor, Rob Canales, Tate Metcalf, BlackRock, Julia Polloreno, Jordan Blanco, Evan Doll, Vincent D’Onofrio, GMO, Reilly Smith, John Newman, David Welch, Mike Vulanich, Jared Chrisman, Sara Madden, Specialized, Pearl Izumi.
How patient did I have to be until I finally had a breakthrough workout?
- Like a kid on Christmas eve.
- Like a kid on a Willy Wonka tour.
- Like a kid in line at the Disneyland entrance.
- Like me at all of those things at the same time.
4 – Obviously, my confidence was pretty shot after an super inconsistent January. I remember telling Matt it was my “Failed January.” When I finally got healthy, I was eager to get back rolling. I had “lost time” to make up for. But I knew from times before that extra patience after any injury, sickness, or time off is key. In hindsight, the extra 3-4 days seem like nothing, but in the moment (like the line at Disneyland), it feels like an eternity. When I was finally ready and Matt let me go, all it took was one good workout to completely forget January and restore my confidence. That was Lesson #3 – It’s amazing how one good workout can restore confidence. When things aren’t going your way, don’t force it, be patient and it’ll come.
It’s amazing how one solid workout can change your outlook. When you’re in a rut, don’t force it, be smart & patient, and it’ll come.
— Jesse Thomas (@jessemthomas) February 12, 2013
Which one of these things did David Khan NOT say during Kona Camp?
- I don’t own shorts.
- Wiping yourself with paper towels is the same as taking a shower.
- Guys! I think there’s a trail of blood in the dining room. Either that, or it’s ketchup.
- I didn’t tell you about the aviators that fell out of your jersey pocket 40 minutes ago while I was riding behind you because I assumed you just didn’t want them anymore and were throwing them off the side of the road on purpose.
2 – I actually told David “2” when recounting my Poconos post race craziness from last year. Not surprisingly, the majority of you said there’s no way he could have said “4.” But you’re wrong, he actually said that, or something very close to that. Anyway, the irrelevant point is that David Kahn says some pretty funny stuff. He seriously wore jeans (and no shirt, he looked like Slider from Top Gun) the entire time we were in Kona. Bottom line, I had a blast hanging out with him, Sarah Piampiano, Rob Lea, Emma Kate Lidbury, Brian Weaver, and Sarah Cameto at the pro camp. It was great times, and helped a ton to have some solid training partners. Thanks for the laughs, guys!
How windy was it when Matt canceled our big bike ride to Hawi and instead added a run in the Energy Lab?
- Really windy
- Dangerous windy
- 1.21 Jigawatts of wind
- Let it rain, bitches!
2 – I’m surprised how many of you thought 1.21 Jigawatts of wind was a real thing, and letter “D” was the camp motto. Anyway, on the final big bike ride day, Matt made the agonizingly tough decision to cancel the bike ride. It was a huge bummer, but we listened to the “environment,” changed plans, and had an awesome day doing a long run fartlek in the Energy Lab. It unexpectedly became one of the best running workouts of my triathlon career. Which led me to the final Lesson #4 – Allow flexibility in training. Conditions, fatigue, family, etc. Don’t charge ahead blindly, adapt & get the most you can out of the moment.
What’s going to be my first race of 2013?
- The human race
- The amazing race
- The Olympics
- Escape from Alcatraz on March 3rd
4 – It’s true, I’m racing in roughly 12 days at Escape from Alcatraz. The field is insane, but I’m psyched to head back to a race that means so much to me. Three years ago here, I finished 7th in the pro field as an age grouper and proved to myself that it was possible for me to be a pro triathlete. Two years ago, I was 4th, my first race after the surprise Wildflower win. I have no idea what to expect now, but either way, I’m looking forward to racing one of the most fun and iconic races in the world. If you’re around, come to the Sports Basement Presidio on Friday, March 1 from 6-8:30pm to listen to Andy Potts, Andrew Bauer, and yours truly talk about the race. Yes, we’ll also have Picky Bars there of course!
And finally, the moment you’ve all been waiting for, randomly drawn from the list of quiz respondents, the winners of the free Picky Bars are:
- Carrie Redfern
- Dave (no last name)
- Joel (also no last name. And no, it’s not my brother Joel Thomas, he would never fill out my quiz)
The winners should all have an email in your inbox from me, so if your name is Dave or Joel and you don’t have an email from me, sorry dude!