Tuesday, 21 December 2010

INFINIT Nutrition news...

INFINIT Announces Nutrition Deal with Slipstream Sports
Custom Fuel Technology Meets Road Cycling

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: December 16, 2010 – Cincinnati, Ohio – INFINIT Nutrition today announced that it will partner with Slipstream Sports and the 2011 Garmin-Cervelo team to create a line of custom-blended nutrition drinks made exclusively to team specifications and to match the nutritional demands of professional racing and the team’s upcoming 2011 grand tour schedule. Slipstream Sports is committed to ethical innovation and along those lines, its sport science group has already begun working directly with the boutique manufacturer – widely known and respected in the triathlon industry – to develop premium customized nutrition designed specifically for real-world training and race conditions.

“It has already been an exciting collaboration for us,” said INFINIT Nutrition President and Founder, Michael Folan, “our core sport, triathlon, has long been a hot-bed for the type of innovation and invention that inevitably works its way into road cycling. We had always anticipated that custom nutrition, designed and produced specifically for the sport or individual athlete, would make the same leap. Since we've had the chance to work with Slipstream on an informal basis over the last couple of years and the riders already love the product, we are very excited that the relationship has evolved.” Folan continued: “The advantage, of course, is that with our custom Osmo-Fit technology the athlete can fuel for hours and hours on liquid nutrition.”

The partnership – through which INFINIT will become the Official Drink Manufacturer of 2011 Team Garmin-Cervelo – will include a combined effort to design, formulate, and manufacture products as well as ensure strict compliance with the team’s clean racing ethic.

“We are constantly seeking like-minded partners that share our commitment to innovation and ethics,” said Jonathan Vaughters, CEO of Slipstream Sports, Inc. “When we looked at the quality of the product, the flexibility to adjust nutritional qualities, and the history of success INFINIT has seen in triathlon, endurance running, and mountain biking, we knew this would be a great fit. We have some of the best athletes in the world and we need to provide them with customized nutrition drink options. Our sport science group will work directly with INFINIT to develop the best possible product for our riders and to us, that is the beauty of this partnership.”

Background: INFINIT Nutrition Holdings, LLC – Founded in 2004, INFINIT Nutrition produces premium private-label and custom-blended sports nutrition and has active production facilities in Australia, Canada, Great Britian, Germany, and the United States. INFINIT's website (InfinitNutrition.com) and patent-pending Osmo-Fit Osmolality technology allow athletes to fully adjust calories per serving, electrolytes, flavor, and 5 other distinct nutritional properties to match nutritional and race-day environment requirements.

For further information and press inquiries about INFINIT, please visit InfinitNutrition.com or contact:

Laurie Walter
Press & Media Relations
+1 513 791-3500

Saturday, 4 December 2010

Positive steps forward...

I started my last blog with 'its been a long time since I last blogged!' and now I'm doing the same! About time for an update!...

Thankfully I'm now able to say I've come a long way in the last couple of months. I managed to get my head around having to put a line through this past season by focussing on the here and now and completely going back to basics with everything. Since returning home to the UK late September I hooked up with a remedial therapist who I've been working with ever since. He quickly reassured me that I didn't have a degenerative problem with my back and that my issues had all been related to having a leg length discrepancy. Its fairly common but when you are running/biking the kind of miles long distance athletes put in over a number of years, things can start adding up and causing problems! So the focus has been to loosen a lot of muscle tightness particularly on my longer leg side, strengthen the weaker muscles and finetune core work and (possibly temporarily) add a lift to the side that is shorter! So... no wonder I felt wonkey!!!

Training wise, I can happily say I have been careful and it seems to have been paying off. I've hit the pool hard and have been getting in way more swimming than normal, biking regularly although still going fairly easy on the mileage and I'm back running regularly too :-) I was a bit worried I'd have lost a lot from not running for atleast 8weeks in the end but I've surprised myself and haven't suffered too badly getting back into it. Maybe when I start more specific tempo type work I'll think again! but maybe the consistency over the last few years really is paying off.

Aside from training, its nice being back at home around family and friends. I've definately been kept busy and proved to have come in very handy with painting, decorating, tiling and even learning to plaster! I think the Ironman athlete's determination or maybe just my stubborness has helped with that. Plastering is not an easy one! Still plenty to keep me going until I head back out to the south of Spain in February to work with Andy and Tracy at Idlebreaks (www.idlebreaks.com). I know I'll be kept busy there too working with Andy to support the biking and working as the guests on site Sports Massage Therapist. Great job for me though and hopefully will set me up nicely for a succesful season of racing next year... Fancy some warm weather training in the south of Spain and living the life of luxury - not having to think about anything other than training, resting and enjoying the Spanish countryside and culture?... Check out Idlebreaks and see what you think...I can definately recommend it! Maybe see you there in a few months...

Thursday, 9 September 2010

frustrations of injury...

Well, its been a long time since I last blogged, so just to quickly get back up to speed... the last few months have been bumpy to say the least! I managed to get myself into what I thought was reasonable shape leading into IM Lake Placid late July. The problems I'd been having with nervey pains in my right leg had seemed to settle a bit and the feeling of being 'wonkey' was a little less after a lot more stretching and I'd started using supported insoles in my cycling shoes. The last thing I wold normally do is introduce something new just a few weeks out from a race, but it seemed to have helped my 'wonkeyness' and got me through the ride. Only problem was, I couldn't put any weight on my foot when I got into T2! The insoles had raised the arch in my foot too much and caused another problem there! Thanks to some great ART treatment in T2 I managed to get out and run. It wasn't pretty though and certainly wasn't fast! Maybe I really shouldn't have run at all, I certainly thought that in the few weeks after, with so much swelling in my foot!
So post IM Lake Placid, I spent 2-3 hours a day focussed on stretching and yoga practice, with a little swimming and biking and later once my foot had calmed down, some running.
Timberman 70.3 was next on my plan and although it looked doubtful I'd race it, I did seem to come back well and started to feel pretty strong again. So I decided to race... Fitness wise, I felt good and my swim and bike were strong, I was really happy with my ride especially as I felt like I was able to fire the right muscles again, something that my wonkeyness hadn't allowed! But then, everything went very quickly downhill! It wasn't pretty trying to run. The nerve pain I had been getting was just too severe for me to be able to even jog. 3 miles in and that was it, I tried stretching, jogging a bit but it was just getting worse. Big alarm bells ringing and with some doubt in my mind that maybe there was a little more going on than just tight hips, I knew I had to get an MRI and see how my back was doing.
A couple of weeks later and I've managed to get a scan. News of compression and protrusion of a disc was not the best but at least I'm getting somewhere in finding out whats wrong.
So this is where I am now, sitting tight and doing very little asside persuing the best treatment - high doses of anti inflammatory's and lots of back bending!
Its never easy being forced to rest due to injury, I know I'm not the first athlete to be injured but sometimes its hard not to focus in on just yourself! I am realising there are some important lessons for me to learn though, about myself, how I cope with things (normally running is my stress release so not being able to run is HARD!), about the body in general and in an anatomy sense. I had an interesting chat with my coach too who pointed out how easily an athlete can get used to what may start as a niggle, let it develop into pains and just accept that thats the way their body feels normally! The fact that for so long I wasn't able to sit for longer than about 10mins without having some pain somewhere in my gluts or legs, should really have made me work out what was going on then!!! It just became normal to feel those niggles. One thing yoga has been teaching me, is being able to focus in on how things feel in every part of the body and noticing differences from one side to the other. Pain is not normal!
I'm positive I am strong enough to get through this and will be stronger for it, I just know, knowing myself that I will have to be careful to not start 'running before I can walk' again. I know when my physical therapist said I could be OK swimming, she meant very very easy, probably the equivalent of a short warm up of a normal session - not a 4km swim session!!! Maybe a few weeks time that will be on the cards, a good chance to focus on swimming anyway.
I'm certainly not defeated but at the same time, I only have one back! I'm not gonna push it!

Friday, 16 July 2010

crash stretching!!!

Some people manage to lose weight dramatically - crash dieting, I'm hoping some crash stretching will get me back on the road to performing the way I should be! The last few races have been very frustrating for me, Eagleman and last weekend at Rhode Island. Both races on the bike, I quickly found my left leg feeling numb from my gluts down and my right side with a 'nervey' pain originating in my lower back, running through my glut and the outside of my leg. Along with this a significant lack of power! Realising I am just soooo tight in my hips, through too long of not enough stretching and taking care of myself the way I know I should have, its all added up. I've spent the last few weeks with a much higher focus on stretching and recovery, but now its a case of recovery and recuperation first and some training in between to simply 'keep my oar in'. Not the most ideal way to lead in to my first Ironman of the year, but I'm seriously hoping I can turn things round and get to Lake Placid in the best shape I know fitness wise, I am in...

Wednesday, 7 July 2010

Your body knows exactly what it needs!

Just lying down after a nice long run this morning, in crazily hot and humid conditions. The last couple of days have been over 100 degrees (high 30's possibly in the 40's C) and with humidity at around 90%. So I'd set off for my 2hr45 run with my nutrition and hydration all sussed out or at least thats what I thought anyway! (maybe in slightly more normal conditions it would have been fine but as I found out... not today!) Calories wise I'm confident I planned for and took in exactly what I needed. My new INFINIT nutrition run formula is great. I'm taking in more calories than I ever used to and its going down so well, keeping me feeling strong throughout. Today though in these conditions, I really could have done with more water! Running towards garden sprinklers and having to stop at a couple to get some extra drops of water within the last few km's of my run was a sure sign my body was crying out for fluid! I'm confident calories wise I'd got it right as I really was just craving pure water. I've had plenty of experiences in training and racing where I think I'd definately underestimated calorie intake and had specific cravings basically for sugar! I've experienced various cravings, I remember one training run I'd done on a hot day in the UK (yes we do have some!) where I'd taken only water with me (silly lesson that I had to learn!) and I remember having a strong craving specifcally for a cadburys creme egg! I suppose the creamy inside is almost like some gels! (I didn't manage to find one, running in the mountains in the countryside around cardiff!!!)

After a bottle of water this morning as soon as I got through the door, a little bit of a nauseous feeling initially, I perked back up again and with my mission to make sure I'm maximising my recovery time, I think I'm doing pretty well so far - recovery drink (INFINIT fruit punch Repair formula), cold shower and 2XU recovery tights on, an Anne special breakfast smoothie (today with oats, yoghurt, milk, mango juice and banana) and a lye down before a good stretch in a bit! Maybe I'll be ready to face the heat again soon...!


Saturday, 26 June 2010

nutrition, hydration, nutrition, hydration.....!

The last week has been really testing in terms of training in very hot and humid conditions. Its been up in the mid 30's with around 90% humididty most days. Over the last few years I have been fortunate to have had opporunities to spend good amounts of time training in hot conditions, so although it doesn't come easily for me to perform well in the heat, I've been adapting fairly well. I still really struggle with the humidity though and I often find its harder to recover from training, maybe because I lose my appetite a bit in these conditions! and as my coach David rightly keeps reminding me, just a few calorie deficit day to day really adds up and can make a big negative difference! Just have to force the calories down! My smoothies are working well though! (latest favourite... peanut butter, chocolate powder, banana, oats and milk! Ummm yummie!)

During training though, i'm getting the calories in really well. Since being over here, I've started to use infinitnutrition products (www.infinitnutrition.us) and I'm really pleased to find that its working really well for me. I couldn't be testing it in much more testing conditions! I'm keeping on top of hydration well and am finding I'm able to take in more calories than I would have before. Thats a result!!! This week I've had a couple of long runs as well as a long brick at race pace and for each have felt better and better as the session has gone on - definately a result!!! So far I've just used their ride and run formula, but have ordered some customized formulas so can't wait to start using these. I know I've had a number of 'under-par performances' in the last few seasons and not getting my nutrition 100% right on the day has been largely to blame. I'm so much more confident now even with just the last week of using infinitnutrition that I can get my nutrition right in races... looking forward to Rhode Island 70.3 in a few weeks and IM Lake Placid shortly after...

Still working on loosening up my hips and gluts, stretching much more and really feeling the benefit :-)

Off for an ez ride now before another race pace day tomorrow :-) Happy days!!! :-)

Saturday, 19 June 2010

Food!!! :-)

Its so nice to be feeling settled in my new home already! One real bonus for me being settled somewhere is that I manage to eat so well! I generally have a pretty good and well balanced diet but when my life is so hecic sometimes and i'm moving around alot, its sometimes hard to cook and eat well. I love cooking and really enjoy my food! Its so nice to be here with Dave who's doing similar training to me too, thinking about food for two people is so much nicer than just thinking for yourslef! I think it makes it more interesting anyway, i'm more likely to vary what I eat/cook.

I've certainly felt more energised this week, thats definately down to me getting into a routine with eating regularly as well as sleeping and generally letting my body catch up! So post long run and recovery ride today, i've just had my favourite post training snack of peanut butter and banana sandwich and an oat, banana, chocolate powder and milk smoothie! Yummie :-)

Off for a good stretch now... and then maybe a trip to the beach and or a little spin on the BMX later! Happy days! :-)

Thursday, 17 June 2010

settlin in and havin fun :-)

Just spending some time settling in to my new home for the next few Months in Port Jefferson, sussing out the training routes, finding my feet and trying not to get myself too lost or in too much trouble... so far so good apart from already being pulled over by the police! Whoops!!! OK a bit of a blonde moment but nothing serious! Lucky my smile came in handy! :-)

Decided to get a little bike to get about on, thought it will come in handy for little trips into town etc, I think 'fun' took over the 'practicality' factor though and I (well, Dave did too) got all excited about having a BMX again! (I haven't had one since I was about 15 and that one died a slow death - no pedals, brakes or a saddle by the end!) So here's a little piccie of Dave, Lucky and I enjoying some ice cream after scooting around town, probably looking like 12 year olds!!! :-)

Back to the serious stuff! I managed to see someone about my hip issues and thankfully it should be solved easily enough, just with a lot of stretching and TLC from my behalf! Felt so much better running today, hope I can up my training again now without tightening up too much - must keep on top of it all!!!

Off for a little stretch now... :-)

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

since leaving Spain... UK and now America!...

Life has been pretty manic over the last few weeks! I left Spain and headed back to the UK the day before my first race of the season, the TriGrandPrix half Ironman (the first race for this new series, held in Kent). I went into the race feeling pretty strong after my few months of training in the Spanish mountains. I felt it would simply give me a good idea of where I am at, which it did (apart from not knowing where I was at for part of the bike course and for the first time ever in my triathlon career managed to take a wrong turn on the bike course and add an extra 10-15 mins to my bike split!!! Arrrgh!!!) Aside from that though, I managed to keep my head together and just see what I could do on the run... a PB (1.28 even with a pee stop!!!) so at least I could be happy with that :-)

Unfortunately the run left me particularly tight in one hamstring and I've been suffering with this ever since. I was due to head out to Japan for the Ironman a few days after the race in Kent, but heard the news that the race had been cancelled! Dissapointed was a huge understatement, not only because I was all geared up for an Ironman but particularly for this one, I was so excited to be going back after last years experience. And for the race organisers too, knowing how much effort goes into the races! Maybe it will be on next year and i'll have a chance to go back, i have my fingers crossed for that!...

So anyway that threw me but as I was planning to do a few races in the States anyway, I decided to bring my trip forward and with some quick/last minute organising I managed to get an entry to Eagleman 70.3, the same date as the Ironman would have been. I figured this would be my best option and then at least after doing the 70.3 I could settle into some training in the area i'll be based for the next few months (near to New York). So with a flight to the States and some long distance driving, i'm in Cambridge, Maryland for the Eagleman 70.3... Unfortunately I didn't have a good day at the office at all! The tight hamstring issue bothered me along with a lot of general tightness/soreness in my glut's, hip flexors and hamstrings. I felt like I just had no power in my legs on the bike and subsequently didn't run well. It was a hard one to swallow, I don't think I've ever had to walk parts of a Half Ironman before! I finished it though and am now taking things a bit easy before settling into a good block of training before my next race in 4 weeks time. First priority though, to get my body back how it should be so I can perform to my best! I just wish I could look after myself as well as I can other people through sports massage!!!

I'm pretty sure I will really enjoy my next few months here... should have time to blog more too!!! :-)

Monday, 10 May 2010

Constructive recovery! :-)

If there's one thing that will make me sit still for a while and therefore compliment me as an athlete and recover from all the training, its artwork... So, lately i've been busy having fun creating charicatures! Not something i've done a lot of in the past, but i'm enjoying giving it a go. My sister has asked if I could have a go at doing some wedding invitations, hope she doesn't mind me posting my attempt!

Will add more as I have them... working on some for Andy and Tracy right now...
Adios for now :-)

Sunday, 2 May 2010

Momo Junior arrives! :-)

OK so I haven't blogged for a little while, I've been so excited about getting myself a new race bike... and my very own Felt AR4 has arrived! :-)

It maybe a bit crazy but hey thats me all over - I had already named my Felt (pride n joy number 2! my car was/is number 1 - picture below) before the bike arrived. So, I'm the proud owner of Momo Junior (named after my car, which is named after the steering wheel! - better than being named skippy like one of my cars after I reversed into a skip!!!) I've been avoiding skips and loose dogs and goats here in Spain and have had a great first week getting to know Momo Junior. I'm sure we are gonna have a lot of fun together! I just can't wait to race...

And there's a proud moment above, myself and Momo Junior pictured in front of the Idlebreaks logo painting I did for Andy last summer :-)

Tuesday, 6 April 2010

photo evidence!

Thanks Andy, you managed to capture a 'typical' moment! Me on the front, pulling the strong men from ABRT!!! :-)

Great to hear you guys are racing well since returning home!

Sunday, 4 April 2010

Thank you to Annapolis Bike Racing Team and your unofficial blog post!

The wheelsucker and some of his ABRT team mates returned to the Idle Breaks camp run by Andy Idle again this year. ABRT had only one session, with thirteen riders, two of who were "friends of ABRT" instead of actually members of the team. For those not familiar with Idle Breaks, the website is at: http://www.idlebreaks.com/. Andy runs the cycling training part while Tracy cooks amazing food, in amazing quantities, for very hungry cyclists.

Andy is incredibly good at what he does: As just one small example, when the group spreads out on the ride, Andy’s sixth sense tells him when he needs to be at the next intersection, to tell the lead rider or riders, which way to turn, and he gets there just before the lead rider or riders arrive at that intersection.

Andy normally works with another person when handling large groups. This year he had pro triathlete Anne Fallows: http://www.annefallows.com/. (a.k.a Lara Croft, Wonder Woman or The Energizer Bunny) on the bike, while Andy drove the van. One suspects Andy would like to take some time off driving and ride the bike occasionally, but apparently Anne was determined to ride the bike, not drive the van. It turns out Anne is rather good at riding the bike; most rides started with her on the front going at a good steady pace, and she was still pulling hours later with a bunch of ABRT "strong men" happy to wheelsuck behind her. One was left with the strong impression that Anne could have pulled all day. The ABRT roadies were saving their energy for the climbs though, and as soon as the road became "a bit grippy" the stronger ABRT riders would ramp it up and make it hurt. Andy knows this region very well and has scouted all sorts of routes, and has even found one that is flat for doing intervals on. Every other route is full of climbs and descents, so the wheelsucker and his team mates had plenty of climbing and descending. Anne had to leave before the ABRT camp was over, but Andy brought in a young local rider, Josh, to have a rider in the group.

'Thanks again and glad you had such a great week! I hope all is going well back at home and look forward to seeing you next year if not before!...
Anne :-)

Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Innertubes in the pool!

After getting my legs back from feeling like they were made of lead, again they may as well have been today! Put an innertube around my ankles and swim - 'band only' and I quickly sink! Another of those 'what doesn't kill you makes you stronger'!!! What I was saying a few weeks ago on some long wet and some days very windy rides! Always smiling though :-)

Monday, 22 March 2010

and here's a pic of my pride and joy!

still working on my other pride and joy... to be! my bike! will post some photos when sorted...

I love driving in my car! :-)

Back at home in the UK and the first job to get ticked off my ‘to do’ list was to wash my car! My pride and joy! Puts a smile on my face every little outing :-) and even more so with the first few drives of the year with the roof down – Happy days!!! My brother’s dog loves it too! Someone suggested this morning ‘he needs a flat cap’!

So, i’d planned a swim/run focus for this 2 weeks of being at home, good job i think! My first swim session with my home squad and wow! my legs were like lead! All that great biking in the Spanish mountains for the last 4 weeks was sinking in and that was pretty much what I was doing in the pool – sinking!!! A few more sessions and by the end of the week, i’m feeling a lot more myself again! Running wise again, my legs were feeling pretty heavy and sore – if only I could give as good massage to myself as I can to other people, I reckon that would help me a lot! It didn’t hurt me yesterday though, I managed to find my legs for a local 10mile cross country race and finish 3rd with a big smile on my face all the way (well maybe not all the way round, but I was smiling from within!). A great mix of muddy mud, hills and rivers to run through made for a great fun race. And the sun was shining, so happy days! :-)

Q... Where are the Andes?...

A... On the end of your Armies!!!!! :-) :-) :-)

Saturday, 6 March 2010

Where am I and what am I up to now?!!!

Well, its about time I start my blog and so for my friends and family and those who are just interested to hear what I'm up to, where I'm at, here's a place to check me out! I'll try to keep you updated regularly and hopefully keep you interested in hearing from me!...

So, I'm in (not so sunny) Spain right now and even though the sun hasn't shined on us here too much as yet this year, i'm loving every minute! I'm based in a little village not too far from Malaga, working for some great friends Andy and Tracey who run Idlebreaks, a swim, bike, run, relax training camp venue - take a look at www.idlebreaks.com for more info... I'm getting to ride my bike and live the outdoor life i've always dreamed of and earn some pennies at the same time, Happy days!!!

Cycling around here is awesome, I don't think i'll ever be bored of the rides, running too, i'm discovering more and more off road tracks leading into the mountains, around the olive groves etc, i really am in my element.

I've been out here since the beginning of February and time has been flying by. We have had two 9 day camps come and go already, i've met some great people in this time and now we are about to start over with the new camp of cyclists that arrived today.

Training wise for me, I've been really keen to just get the miles in my legs, particularly on the bike. My winter hadn't been ideal until coming out here, much like a lot of people being hit with snow etc and for a few other reasons I really hadn't been able to train as much as i'd liked. I did get a good swim block in before heading over, so another reason to get some good miles in on the bike for now. I have to head back to the UK for a few weeks soon so that will probably be a good swim/run block again and then when I get back here at the begining of April I plan to really get myself into some properly structured training (with the help and guidance and possible reigning in from my good friend and coach David). For now though, i'm just getting good miles in and as I say, loving every minute! :-)

So thats a little update for now, i'll be back soon and may even attempt to post photos as and when too!...