Marty Gaal's Update Archive - 2005

Dec 31 - Happy New Year! I hope 2005 was a good one for you, and may 2006 be even better. Just remember these few simple rules:

There you go! Venture forth into this brand new year with your altered perspective and make good things happen - to you and yours.

Dec 29 - It's my turn to be under the weather. Fortunately it seems to be limited in nature. Packing up is going well, Monday the 2nd will be a full day of loading and unloading all the furniture. I still need to pick out my travel outfits and pack the remainder up. Training has been OK but nothing special. We're meeting the gang for a final happy hour tonight. Not much else going on with me right now, just getting my new clients up and running. Happy New Year to ya if I don't see ya!

Dec 26 - I made it two days but broke down and am back on sugar. Splenda, Nutrasweet, that other one, yuck. Holidays were nice, spent it with the in-law's down in St Pete. I finally got some Superman Underoos; all is right with the world.

Dec 24 - I finally did it! I quit putting sugar in my coffee. Now my coffee tastes like it was meant to - like sh!t. Merry Christmas and all that.

Dec 22 - Today I gotta get my CPR/first aid certification renewed. 6 hours of making out with mannequins. Blah.

Dec 20 - This week we begin the process of putting all our stuff into storage. I'm planning to start later today. Right now I'm sitting on my couch, listening to Rage Against The Machine, and working in my FSU underroos.

Dec 18 - Aww, the poor whiddle kiddies think the SAT is too long. Awww, they don't want to have to retake the whole test. Awww, let's give everyone 100 points for being able to sign their name. Let's just throw out any sort of testing and give everyone a gold star, because everyone is just so special.

Dec 16 - It's officially official. I received an A in International Business despite my "C's get degrees" approach to studying. That's it for a while.

Dec 15 - Maybe you're wondering what a full-time triathlon coach does all day? Last few days have typically been wake up, coffee and email, then workout of some sort, breakfast, home to work on plans & managerial type stuff, occasionally meet someone for training, housework, workout of some sort, dinner, and the day is over.

Dec 11 - So we went to Homecoming 2005 last night here in Orlando, a theme party hosted by social chairman Dan Traver. To my surprise Bri and I were named Homecoming Queen and King. I think the vote was rigged. Bri said my speech didn't make any sense, which makes perfect sense - why be remembered as a well-spoken statesmen when stumbling, incoherent drunk will do just fine. I did take the Homecoming Queen home anyway, a victory for geeks all over the world.

Dec 10 - The Powerstroke swim clinic went well today. Marc Bonnet-Eymard joined Bri and I to illustrate a variety of swim drills and help explain the Powerstoke concept. When you say Powerstroke there should be angels singing and bells ringing. Say it with me. Powerstroke. Powerstroke. POWERSTROKE!

Dec 8 - Tonight is the last class for my MBA. I managed at least a B, so this is it. We're discussing the impact of the euro on the US economy. My first class for this degree started in January, 2002. That's like six years of school.

Dec 5 - With the exception of my wife accepting my marriage proposal, this is the best thing I've ever heard.

Dec 3 - Bri has taken over the title of fastest Gaal. 19:51 v 19:54 today in an epic battle of wills. My hip was tight, I was hung over, I was training through, my shoes were too tight, it was too hot, it was too cold, my feet hurt, the course wasn't properly marked, I had a flat, I had to go to the bathroom, and I overslept.

Dec 2 - Last night we partied with the big dogs at the GRAY ROBINSON LAW FIRM Holiday Party. I put the whole thing in caps because we were rubbing elbows with mayors, judges, and movie stars. We were at the same party, anyway. I hid my name tag to throw off mixed signals on whether or not I was super-duper important and thus traveling incognito, or just a nameless schmuck who wandered in off the street.

Derrick Babb, a regular at the Y triathlon swimming group, has made a great movie documenting his season. You can check it out here. You can also check out the latest Orlando Sentinel article.

Nov 30 - Last day of desk jockeying and paper shuffling. You should read my manifesto.

Nov 26 - Went to a great party at Manny O's house to watch the Seminoles get stomped in the Swamp (again). Had a lot of fun nonetheless, I'm not emotionally invested in the games anymore. I got sick of the Criminole BS a few years ago. My adopted UCF team is doing well, though I couldn't name one player on their roster. Tried to help Manny finish the keg but my college days are far behind.

Nov 25 - Latest Orlando Sentinel article is here.

Nov 24 - Bri and I ran in the St. Pete Times Turkey Trot 5k this morning. The top 100 finishers in both the 5 and 10ks get a nice souvenier coffee mug. I'm a sucker for coffee mugs considering I drink about ten cups a day. We skipped last year to stay in Orlando for the 5k turkey trot there, but the previous three years have done the 10k in Clearwater. This year neither of us felt up to the task of racing a 10k and opted for the 5k. We managed to keep our streaks alive; Bri took 9th female in 19:42 and I felt pretty good, finishing with a relatively strong last mile, for a 19:28 and 81st male. More importantly, I totally kicked Bri's butt.

Nov 23 - Happy Thanksgiving everyone. Drive safe, have a fun Turkey Trot. I've been putting together our race schedule for 2006, should be an interesting year.

Nov 19 - Had a good time with the Y tri/swim club at happy hour last night. What a great group of people. I finally posted some more pictures from the year. Check it out.

Nov 17 - My Basic Steps program is full up for January 2006. Winding down at the day job, they have delegated work around me. Getting back into some regular running, feels good. Hope everything is going well for you.

Nov 13 - So I capped off my non-training and marginally acceptable boozing period with a visit to the Orlando Beer Festival at Citywalk - Universal Studios. It was a freaking nightmare, impossible to get a sample of beer. Whoever put it on should be ashamed of themselves, they probably sold 400% more tickets than they should. We had fun but stayed in the restaurants.

Nov 12 - Not much going on, have spent a good bit of time hanging out with friends and family lately. Been very unstructured in training, a run here, a swim there. Saw oldtime professional Alec Rukosuev at the pool yesterday. He said he was glad to see he's not the only one getting fat and pasty.

Have several OSB athletes racing at the MiamiMan tomorrow morning. Good luck!

Nov 10 - So on my birthday I wound up spending 8 hours in a meeting with government officials discussing the minutae of military simulation equipment. It was such a blast. The angry engineer next to me had bad breath and talked into my right ear. Good lord.

Nov 7 - It was a fun, educational weekend. Met with Joe Friel and Tom Manzi for my initial Ultrafit training. Joe is the founder of and author of the Triathlete's Training Bible, among others. They were both also well-grounded, nice fellas. I stayed with my old buddy Lance Muzslay from the OCBP/Jersey Shore and caught up on life in general. My birthday is tomorrow, I'm gonna be 34 years young. Life comes at you fast. If you don't stop and look around sometimes, you might miss it.

Nov 4 - So I'm sitting in a Scottsdale, AZ Starbucks, connected to the 'net through my new T-Mobile account, conducting business from my laptop and cellphone. It's a long way from flipping burgers at the Roadhouse, or cooking chicken wings at the Deauville Inn! (Points to whoever can identify the location of that landmark.)

By the way, I feel like a total yuppie scum.

Nov 3 - Flying out tomorrow morning for my Ultrafit training weekend. Been running and swimming a little, haven't gotten back on the bike just yet. We've put the condo on the market, anyone interested in a 2/1 near downtown Orlando, drop me an email.

Oct 28 - Here's my IMH report. Bri's will be up when we finish compressing some picture files.

Oct 25 - There I am, sitting at work, twiddling my thumbs, pretending to look busy, killing time as usual. Then it hits me - an epiphany. I don't have to be here anymore. I now have what's known in some circles as "F U" money. Bri and I have been saving aggressively for two years. The coaching business is going well. I've basically worked every day for myself or someone else for more than a year now, including every weekend and vacation day. The only days I didn't work, I did an Ironman. So that's it. I'm telling my boss that Dec 2nd is my last day in the cube farm. Soyonara. Adios. Via con dios. Later.

Oct 22 - So I was asked to escort the lead woman at the GFT half as the guy didn't show up. A wild and zany official decided to give the lead woman a penalty because he thought I was an unofficial pacer. Then he wouldn't believe me when I tried to explain I was 'official.' And really rude and combative. I was almost rendered speechless. But I write strongly worded letters.

Oct 20 - We are home safe and sound here in Orlando. I decided to be a rebel and skip class. Oh golly. Might go for a short swim tomorrow AM after practice. Tomorrow morning the Orlando Sentinel should be running a column of mine on the Hawaii race. This weekend I'm going to be a professional heckler at the GFT provided the race goes off. There's another gigantic hurricane brewing in the Gulf as we speak.

Oct 19 - We're going to spend today goofing around at the beach then will be catching a redeye back to the mainland. Arrive back home just in time to go to class. Sitting at lava java right now typing off the last of my emails. It's been a fun week. Vacation is always too short for my liking, I could do this full time. I think I will!

Oct 17 - Last night we went to the awards ceremony and watched all the superfast people get their awards. Bri was kind enough to point out that I would have mopped up in the women's 55-59 category. Afterwards Andrew Hodges, Bri, and I decided to head over to the Kona Brewery, where unbeknownst to us Tri-Dubai and Triathlete Mag were hosting a party. Tony DeBoom took pity on us and gave us some passes so we could hang out with the cool people. Bri got a nice pic with Sarah Reinersten and Andrew got to chat with Peter Reid. I stood by the garbage can and tried not to trip anyone important.

This morning we went on a snorkeling cruise to Captain Cook's monument. Very pretty cove. Added a couple more pics to the hawaii folder. Tomorrow we go tandem parasailing.

Oct 16 - What a day it was. I laughed, I cried, I puked my guts out. The Hawaii Ironman lived up to it's reputation as one of the toughest. The winds were mild for Hawaii and there were lots of fast times. Despite going around 5:13 on the bike I must have been passed by no less than 200 people. The run got very hot very quickly and I was simply unable to keep up with my fluid loss. Tried to drink as much as possible at the aid stations but that also got pretty uncomfortable. Stomach shut down somewhere after the Energy Lab, puked at 23 and 24, but made it to the finish in a run time of around 4:37 and a total time of 10:53.18. I'm happy with that! Pre-race weight was 160, post-race with sopping wet shoes: 150. Ouch. Congrats to all the Florida athletes who did so well out there - Farshad, Andrew, Bob Wagoner, and Tom Russell. We put up a few more pics.

Oct 14 - So this morning we attended a timeshare sale presentation. By attending, we received 60 buckaroonies and some nice discounts on activities like snorkeling and parasailing, which we intend to take up on Monday and Tuesday. The presentation was pretty interesting, the place is called Shell Timeshare or something like that. Our hostess was mightily disappointed when we failed to sign up on the spot for any sort of deal, including a week every 2 years in a studio for only ~12k with options to pick up steeply discounted weeks at resorts across the globe. How could anyone pass a deal like that up? Apparently, a cheap SOB like myself.

Oh yeah, the Ford Ironman World Championships is tomorrow, in just about 14 hours. Should be a good time. The wind is predicted to be relatively mild right now, so we'll see how that holds up. I feel pretty good and am going to adopt the slow and steady finishes the race mantra. Added a few new pics. Thanks for all the positive vibes from everyone. I've been uncharacteristically relaxed the past few days. I'm glad I have Bri around to put Valium in my coffee.

Oct 13 - Just came back from the Ultrafit open house at the Royal Kona resort. Got to chat with the Ultrafit Associates as well as a number of Ironman athletes from around the globe. Very relaxed group!

Oct 13 - ran in the world infamous underwear run this AM. About 1000 other folks also did. Quite a spectacle. We're putting up pictures here, that link should send you to a directory where you can just click the image. I don't feel like making all sorts of links right now.

Oct 12 - We made it to Kona. The trip wasn't too bad...got in about 3AM our time. But then we couldn't find our hotel for a couple hours. Punch-drunk by then. All is well though, got the bike together and went for a ride this AM. I did the little video thing at IM live, might be up sometime. Right now we're sitting at Lava Java drinking coffee. Lots of famous tri-folks out here. Duh.

Oct 10 - I jumped in the Moss Park Triathlon on Saturday, it's a nice course. Felt good on the run until mile 2 then the humidity got to me. Still ran my 2nd best 5k of the season. Off to Kona tomorrow for some fun in the sun. We're taking our mobile office so check back for some updates and pics. I'm making no predictions other than having a nice vacation with my favorite lady.

Oct 9 - Fun wedding. Big family. Lots of beer.

Oct 7 - It's been a fast week. Took my last mid-term last night. I refused to buy the $130 text book and was lazy about buying a used one off Ebay or Half.com. So I walked into the campus bookstore at 6:15 and scanned the book for the 7pm test. (The teacher told us what pages the questions would be from). I got at least a 50%. Not bad, huh?

My sister is getting married tomorrow afternoon, and for the heck of it I signed up for the Moss Park Triathlon tomorrow morning. Should be a fun day. Today I'm playing in a golf scramble with the groom and his brothers and friends. Happy marriage day, Anna!

Oct 1 - You can track me during IM Hawaii either by going to ironmanlive.com or through wiggle wireless, which will send updates to your cell phone. My bib number is 1505. My SAT score is not.

Sep 30 - So I'm now a part-timer at my day job - no more Fridays. I feel like I have twice the free time and get four times as much done. That's because I work six times faster for half the cost. Does that sound like your boss's latest productivity initiative? Remember to drop words like synergy, win-win, and leveraging. Boo-yaa.

Sep 28 - Just a couple weeks to go until Hawaii. Looking forward to the trip. Not much else to report.

Sep 25 - So this morning on my last long ride I caught 3 flats. I don't think Continental is up to ISO 9000 standards. Fortunately I learned years ago to plan for disaster and actually carry 3 spares on long rides. Got in about 6 hours pedaling time then went to TooJay's and rewarded myself with a double mushroom and swiss burger and fries. I ate all of it then helped my wife with her vegetable lasagne. Yuck.

Sep 23 - Investment tip for the day: Short Rob Skaggs' popularity with a variety of Texas running clubs, and moonrocks. Go long on uranium and freon.

Sep 18 - What a weekend. Did a 4.5hr ride yesterday AM then worked all day then watched the FSU and UF games. Today got up at 7 and worked most of the day then ran 2.5hr at night. Did make time to catch The Brothers Grimm with my wife, not bad. Got a new laptop and am like a kid in a candy store.

Sep 18 - Latest Sentinel article on the OUC Downtown Orlando Triathlon.

Sep 14 - My wife has put up an excellent race report.

Sep 13 - I just had to share this with you.

Sep 12 - Had a nice weekend up in Raleigh. My rear derailler cable came loose from my bar end shifter on Saturday, and I wound up messing up the cabling by trying to superglue the head/end of the cable into the bar end shifter, but didn't notice the cable was frayed. When testing it out at 6PM on Saturday, the end held up but a few shifts later was crimped and unusable. Long story short is that the race day mechanics couldn't pull the broken cable from the shifter, no one had an extra shifter, and I wound up riding with the rear derailler in my 14 or 15 and just used the front - so I had two gears. Lots of big gear pushing and standing climbing. My bike time was just a bit slower than last year, but the method of riding really put a hurting on my quads and calves. The run was OK on flats but uphills were a bear, hung on for a competitive finish and enjoyed the day nonetheless. Sometimes when life deals you lemons, you have to put the lemons on a concrete sidewalk and jump and down on them to make lemonade. Note to self: don't try to fix your bike again, stupid.

Sep 8 - Quick week, off to the Duke Liver Center Half tomorrow. Should be good, temperature will be nice. This was a recovery/easy week so I hope to have a decent one. My bottom bracket is full of grit though. Pre-excuse #42.

Sep 4 - What a day. Rode 6 hrs, felt decent but not much power. Swam 2k after. Almost 7hrs of training all told. Do you think I should go for a run? Does this insane habit make me look fat?

Sep 3 - Ugg. Humidity - 3, Marty - 0. We're movin' to Alaska.

Sep 2 - Running the Miracle Miles 15k tomorrow morning. Gonna be humid.

Sep 1 - I'd like to write about my training but the New Orleans situation just sits on my mind. How is it possible that I'm only a 10 hr drive away, but we can't get water and basic needs into this city? Are we the most advanced civilization on the planet, or aren't we? Why aren't paratroopers dropping in from the sky to take out the sniper/looters? Why aren't we commandeering cruise ships or diverting Navy vessels and bringing in troops and supplies / evacuating folks on amphibious transport? Why aren't we enlisting every able bodied person in the neighboring 200 miles and getting every volunteer somewhere where they can make a difference? This is unreal. People are dying of thirst in the United States of America.

Sep 1 - The tragedy in New Orleans appears to show that at any given time, our society is exactly two days from descending into anarchy and lawlessness. We've come a long way. What group will be the first to compare to Sodom & Gommorah?

Aug 29 - Big training weekend. Rode 4.5hr Saturday, 4.25hr Sunday, ran 1:15 Sunday PM. Tired.

Aug 27 - I will level with you. Sometimes there's no worse feeling then getting dropped like a bag of hammers from a strong group ride.

Aug 26 - This morning I was out the door at 5:30. Ran down to the Y for my swim practice. My shirt was already soaked. Back out the door at 7 to shoot for a total of 2hrs run time with some parking garages. My 10 oz trainers were three pounds each by 7:15. The parking garages were fine, then the fun really began. After an hour 15 total, I was back to doing the Gallowalk shuffle. Simply couldn't keep my HR below 175-180 without some walk breaks. The humidity is crushing. Y'all in Florida and the Southeast US know what I'm talking about. A couple weeks here and there wouldn't be so bad, but it's been like this for 3 months now. Anyway, run should have been about 2hrs, wound up being 2:20. Should I feel good or bad about it? I'm not sure how this sort of thing ranks on the "staying mentally tough" vs "conditions you can't train properly in" scale.

Latest Orlando Sentinel article is here.

Aug 24 - I will level with you. Sometimes there's no better feeling then busting off the front of a strong group ride and hearing someone ask, "who the hell is that guy?"

Aug 23 - Wow, I actually felt pretty good on an easy 6 mile run tonight. Go figure.

PS: Yesterday I came home from work and noticed 2 lizards making baby lizards on the sidewalk outside our place. Aren't they cute?

Aug 22 - Good weekend. I-4 must be the only road that could get backed up at 12AM on a Monday morning. Just got in from St. Pete/Tampa. Didn't have much gas for the race on Saturday morning but I wasn't expecting much either. Bri made the Gaal household proud though and pulled in some hardware. Sunday ride with the Tampa crew was good, put in about 104. Concert tonight was fun. Lots of stuff to catch up on around here as usual.

Aug 18 - So for those of you worried about my motivation; never fear. Last Sunday I still put in about 4 hours of training, just not exactly as planned. Had a nice run with Bri last night and managed to get up for a Yoga/swim this morning. Debating an easy spin on the trainer. We're both racing at the Coca-Cola Ft. Desoto race on Saturday, then I'm going to ride 100+ with some of the Tampa folks on Sunday. We'll finish the weekend by going to 'The Killers' concert. Should be fun.

Aug 14 - This morning I was blasted by a massive wave of demotivation and instead of getting up at 6:00 to head out for a 90 mile bike ride, I stayed in bed until 8, then got up and read the paper. After a couple cups of coffee and an hour of calling myself names, I laced up my running shoes and headed out the door for a punishing "race specifc run," aka suffering in the heat/humidity of CFL (much like Kona should be). The run soon turned into a Gallowalking death march, as my HR soared into the 180s at about 10min per mile pace. I stayed positive with reinforcing internal dialogue like "Don't have a heart attack on this lady's lawn. Don't heatstroke out in the middle of the street. Try not to barf." Brutal.

Aug 11 - There are things afoot in Martyland. Where to start? I've been accepted as a Joe Friel Ultrafit Associate and will go through training with Joe and Tom Manzi in November. This is great professional development as a coach and something I've been thinking about for several years. The organization is top notch and if you haven't been paying attention, I am planning to switch to full-time coaching shortly. Actually need to talk to my boss tomorrow about dropping down a few hours. Training is going well, have been walking the line of extreme fatigue but it's all with a purpose. Will ride 70/run 8 Saturday and ride 90+ Sunday. Swim and Yoga tomorrow. Rode with my favorite training partner tonight, nice and easy. Good times.

Aug 6 - Been a decent week. Was completely exhausted after a tough Tues-Wed and had to take Thursday off. Friday I was looking forward to the evening Yoga class but we had a bit of a medical emergency. Bri's eye had been bothering her and she noticed a white spot on her cornea. Since I stayed at a Holiday Inn Express a few times, I was able to diagnose it as a corneal ulcer. Not a good thing to have on your eyeball. Anywhoo, we got a professional diagnosis ($125, oh, you're right dude), some medicine and then an abbreviated strength workout in. She'll be fine, it is fortunately not in her line of sight. I've become a bit hooked on Yoga/Pilates as over the past few weeks my hip issues have resolved quite a bit. I attribute it to a few visits to the chiro to get me back in line and then consistency with the prescribed exercises, which Yoga/Pilates pretty much cover. Boy am I talking up a storm today or what? This morning we ran the Clermont dirt loop, I got in almost 2hrs and Bri did 1:44. She is very fit these days.

Aug 3 - Check me out!

July 31 - It was a whirlwind weekend. I went up to Crystal River to do the Nature Coast Twilight Triathlon. The mapquest directions from the website somehow sent me to a dead end in the middle of a residential neighborhood. Fortunately, my mother-in-law using a cellphone and PC was able to navigate me to where I was supposed to be. She'll be henceforth referred to by callsign NAV1 on these pages.

So I arrived at the race site 15minutes before the start. If you don't know me, there are two things I really don't like much: driving, and getting lost. Happy to be at the site, I wound up having a good race and my best sprint in a couple years, netting me 1st place to boot. So, scrap all those scientific warm up plans you love to use; spending an hour freaking out in the boonies is just as good.

The race was really nice, except for the low tide muck. Check out one of their sprints if you ever have a chance. Nice part of the state as well, not a total concrete jungle just yet.

July 29 - Today I'll rant and rave a bit. So what's the big deal with everyone being so mean to Karl Rove lately? I mean, he didn't really say anything or mention names, did he? And so what about selling some nice F-16s to Pakistan, or trading nuclear intelligence with them? They're our friends, right? They're on our side, the millions of rebels living in the hills with ties to talibanesque figures are just flim-flam, right? And what's the problem with cutting the federal budget for the EPA by 45%? I mean, who really needs clean water when we have our livers and kidneys to filter that stuff out? Thanks for listening, I'll be here all millenium.

July 28 - Today I'll talk about completely uneventful trivia. You'll be happy to know I received an A- in my MBA Entrepreneurship course. I regret to say that I didn't apply myself much - I was too busy working and running a part-time business. The material was useful, so I did get something out of it, it filled in a few blanks so to speak. Tonight we did a track workout at 6pm on what is reportedly the hottest day of the year. I was near death a couple times and my heart rate got up to 200, pretty much my max. My wife is in great shape and is dragging me kicking and screaming into respectable form. I don't want to embarass anyone in Hawaii.

July 25 - Gee, so this is what the internet looks like? The last few weeks I've felt like someone chopped an arm off. Amazing how technology can become so central to our lives. I do work over the 'net quite a bit as you may know, so not having access was a real life stressor. We sucked it up and are switching to DSL despite the transition costs. I'll just get a fourth job or something.

Training has been getting back together, hitting the Yoga and Pilates to keep the body balanced and the soul tuned up and all that new age jazz. I do think the extensive core and hip work is helping immensely.

July 20 - Congrats to Paul Duckett for going 10:46 at IM Switz! Not much going on around here. 'Net is back up. Ran a track workout tonight. Nearly keeled over. A stranger asked me if I was doing all right. Skipped out on the Ft Lauderdale supersprint last weekend due to being too busy to go anywhere.

July 13 - Nothing new. Track workout got rained out so I took in a spin class. Who knew that you didn't start burning fat until 65% of max heart rate? Dang. I suppose before that point we work on oxygen and agua.

July 10 - Camp went very well, thanks to Lee from BodyZen for sharing the load. Everyone had a good time and I'd like to think folks went away with a solid knowledge base as well as some good memories. It made for a long week for me personally but when you enjoy what you do, working lots ain't so bad. Now all I have to do is put together my group final project. The fun never ends!

July 7 - Co-hosting a triathlon camp this weekend. I think between ongoing coaching, regular work, and the camp, it'll be about 75 hrs. Not as bad as some of you lawyer types!

July 4 - Ran in the Watermelon 5k this AM along with 2,000 other folks. My hip/ITB/glute didn't bother me at all for the first time in a 'fast' run, and I use the word loosely, in a long time. My lack of anaerobic run fitness, on the other hand...it was good to do but really, really hot.

July 1 - Happy July 1st!! On this day, a few hundred years ago, a King's Representative said, "Oh, sh!t!"

June 30 - So last night I took my big test for the entrepreneurship class. I was the first one done, so I win. Went for a run after and finished covered in mud and crap. Weather here has been horrible lately. Boring stuff, huh?

June 25 - Gave it a good effort at the 4th annual Margarita Mile tonight. If you've been keeping tabs you know I haven't done much speedwork since November 03. All sorts of issues. Was happy to break 5:30 and almost, almost beat my wife. I kicked the last 200 but she had some room and nudged me at the line. Good job, Bri. We went 5:27. And my leg didn't flop around, my hip didn't kill me, etc. The fast guys went 4:35. Youch.

June 24 - So I sent the right email at the right time and have been writing articles for the Orlando Sentinel's Rush! section on triathlon related activities. They come out on Fridays but I don't make every Friday. You can check out the latest one here.

June 23 - This delay in updates brought to you by the fine folks at Time Warner/Road Runner Services, where our motto is, "There's no customer service in Road Runner Service. Go @&#^ yourself!"

A bit of a hassle for me to go without a connection these days. That's life. Getting my training back together. Went to a reputable chiropractor here in town to try to put an end to my hip/ITB woes. Turns out my pelvis was twised halfway around and I've been running like a crab for a while. Go figure.

June 15 - Hey, none of you said 22% of jacksquat is still jacksquat. Good for you!

June 12 - So as painful as it was, I had to liquidate a few funds I'd acquired in my 401(k) brokerage account in order to roll the thing over. Lockheed matches 4% with company stock that you can't sell until you either quit or hit 55. 22% locked up in here didn't seem like a good long term plan.

June 11 - Had some fun doing the Lake swim this morning. A good group of people showed up. I decided to push it and get a decent workout in. In other news, One Step Beyond filed for its first trade/service mark today. It was a bit painful but I wanted to secure some intellectual property rights. I've trademarked "beercation." Talk about going legitimate.

June 9 - So there is a lake swim at 10 AM on Saturday morning in Winter Park. The 14th annual Beattie Lake swim. Open to master's swimmers. Informal. Should be fun. I think I can beat Bri at it.

June 8 - Man some of these weeks go quickly. I am back to being a busy camper. Class on Monday and Wednesday nights now. Entrepreneurship. Work is busy. Lots to do. Coaching goes well. Training is ok. Great to watch my wife do well. Not much beer. This is a snapshot of my life.

June 5 - My wife gave me a sound beating this weekend. But having read the writing on the wall, I used third parties to place leveraged off-shore bets against myself. I guess I'll never play major league baseball.

June 2 - So my network connection conked out on me for no particular reason; for the last three days I've been bouncing back and forth between my PC and Bri's (which remained connected.) I finally went into the network setup and pulled some crazy software ninja kamikazee moves. Now my connection is back up but every fifth keystroke delivers a 20 volt shock.

June 1 - Someone get the paddles, stat, I think he's gonna blow.

May 29 - So this morning I forgot my cycling shoes. Rather than admit defeat, I rode with Bri and Carey through some of the more challening sections of Central Florida. Apparently I'm quite a masher, as there was no noticeable difference in my riding ability. I totally kicked their butts in sneakers. Yeah. I beat girls.

May 28 - We ran the Colonial 5k this morning. Rather, Bri ran the Colonial 5k and I stumbled along to finish. It felt like someone was pouring hot water on my head. Good stuff. Thank God I didn't booze last night. Bri is selling her prize on Ebay and I'm taking a 40% commission. Capitalist pig dogs.

May 26 - Hey, if you live in Central Florida, consider running in the Colonial 5k on Saturday morning. This is a fundraiser for the Colonial HS track and cross-country teams. Our buddy Rene Plasencia is putting it on. Rene is a top area runner and gives a lot back to the sport, in 4 years his HS team went from being off the map to district champions. I just found out about it, we'll be working on a bigger advertising campaign next year!

May 25 - Happy Birthday Day to my closest friend, my favorite athlete, and the love of my life. You are the best, Bri.

May 22 - My new training philosophy involves eating lots of pizza and drinking high calorie imported beer while doing 30minute easy runs and mostly sitting on the couch. I managed to win the Mad Beach Triathlon in spite of a few weeks of pretty much being a putz. Felt really strong on the bike, held together on the run. I am regional sprint champion or something like that! Hear me roar quietly!

My wife outsplit me on the run so I'll be doing the dishes and the laundry until our rematch in Dunedin.

May 20 - So it was my first week at the new gig. A very entrepreneurial spirit fills the air. People introduce themselves to you and say, "How's it going?!? Nice day, isn't it! Welcome aboard!" The company is called DEI Services Corp.

In other news, I am designing my retirement plan for the next few months as there's no 401k etc here for now. I also have the coaching biz so am leaning towards a SEP-IRA. My investment choices right now are:
Extended market (Rus 5000 Index) VEXMX (30%)
LT corp investment grade bonds VWESX (20%)
REIT Index VGSIX (20%)
Intl Value VTRIX (30%)

I know the dangers of a couple of these in the current environment but am looking at long term dollar-cost averaging etc. Does anyone have any feedback on these choices? Only new dollars would be going in, my existing diversified portfolios will stay as is for now. The SIMPLE at Vanguard costs more per year ($25/annum v. $10/annum). Vanguard doesn't have a solo 401(k) and the IRA forms would be cheaper to administer over the long haul. Thanks.

May 17 - We had a great time in the Smoky Mountains over the weekend. Borrowed a cabin on a creek. I'll put up some pics when I have a chance, which should be sometime next year.

May 12 - Changes are afoot in Martyland. My last day with Lockheed was yesterday. I ran (hobbled?) a track workout to celebrate. We're off to the Great Smokey Mountains for our 1-year anniversary weekend. Going to do some mountain biking, hiking, trail running, and commune with Mother Earth. Yes, feel the power of Momma Planet. Boo-ya. Next week I start my gig with my new company. I'll also start my second to last MBA class. As well as short-distance focused training. And I might get a haircut. Interesting times.

May 8 - The Tradewinds Park Duathlon was fun. If you ever feel like a change of pace check out these 2-10-2 duathlons. The run is probably 1.9, which is fine with me.

May 6 - OK, all is well in our fine democracy. Texas is finally getting it's act together. Now I won't be going to Austin for those, uh, conferences anymore. And how about the fine prime time quality programming we got goin'? Who gives a shit about the real issues, Like this, or this, or even this, when there's so much more important stuff to concern ourselves with. Isn't that hot?

To keep things topical, I ran the Corporate 5k last night. Ouch. Time to get back to the track.

May 4 - Excuse my horrible form and lack of updates. Been vegging a bit. Done with school for two weeks and just about in between jobs. Haven't been training loads. Been catching up on some reading, actually. Who knew that Athur C Clarke had at least 5 new co-authored books out since the last time I really looked into it? Yeah, big scifi geek. Good stuff. We watched Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy last weekend, entertaining if you've read the books, probably boring and weird if you haven't. Just wait until I find a publisher with some balls and a sense of humor. Given, that would require me actually writing a novel.

Training stuff - doing a duathlon in the Miami area this weekend, a good old fashioned ass-kicking is always a good motivator.

April 30 - I'm officially retiring from running at 1pm in FL.

April 29 - Decided to skip out on the St Augustine race. My knees are still a bit achy and I don't feel like spending 4+ hours in the car tomorrow. And I'm slow right now. Will get in some easy training locally then worry about some racing in May.

April 27 - So tomorrow morning I'm giving Lockheed my 2 week notice and signing a contract with a different company. It's time for me to fly. Spread your wings and soar. Free as a bird. Free falling. Free at last. You can never take our freedom. You get the picture.

I'm a tentative maybe for the St Augustine Coca Cola Triathlon this weekend. It's a great course but I really have lots to do and 4 hours of driving is 4 hours of not working for my athletes. Besides that, my competition are all on top of their game - something like 5 of the top 8 guys at St Anthony's were from Florida.

April 24 - St. Anthony's fun. I didn't work out over the weekend. Am getting chubby quick. Time to start training.

Congrats to everyone who competed/met their goals/had a good time this weekend.

April 21 - So I have a webtracker on the site that has lately also been keeping track of keyword searches that bring folks to this page. It's interesting to see what people are looking for on the internet.

April 21 - Another week is almost over. A couple more days and then the weekend is here. Then I get to work some more! Almost done with my MBA finance class, that will leave me with 2 classes to go. Then I wil form a REIT, take all your money, and abscond to parts unknown. Just kidding.

April 17 - Had a quick weekend in St. Pete. Watched Bri compete in the Escape from Ft. Desoto triathlon. I thought she did pretty good considering her support of my efforts at IMAZ. Christina Noordstar is in great shape as she trains for the Disney Florida Half. I don't know who the 2 ladies from 35-39 were that went 1-2, but they should go ahead and race in the elite division. Just my 2 cents. Watching the race knocked me out, I needed a 3 hour nap afterwards.

My body is still beat up. My sympathetic nervous system is fried. I think I know what some of those folks who train themselves into a chronic state might feel like. (Not that I do that, but these few days are giving me perspective). Went for a 20minute run on Saturday and a 13 mile bike ride on Sunday. That was enough. I'm officially on beercation.

April 15 - Happy 11-month anniversary Bri! Time sure flies. I'm feeling a bit better, lots of residual fatigue. I couldn't fathom how some folks can go out and do another IM one or two or three weeks after the first. Brutal. I posted graphic training logs from Jan on for all my fellow geeks out there.

April 13 - Still sore. Still tired. Ironman Arizona report is up.

April 12 - Sore. Tired.

April 11 - Got the rolldown spot for Ironman Hawaii. IMAZ was windy but good temps. Had a pretty good race all in all. 43 OA, 10th in a pretty stacked AG. I liked the course. Will find something to kvetch about in my own race later.

April 7 - In an effort to short circuit the usual length of a cold or flu, I'm taking a brew consisting of the homeopathic remedy Zicam (Zincum somethingum), a Z-pack, a T-pack, eye of newt, and saliva of dog of the Appalachians. I'm also using my vast mental powers to zoom down to the cellular level, where I imagine little blue superheroes throttling all the invading germs. Yeah, that's the ticket.

We head out to IMAZ today, won't be back for a while. You can keep track of how the day goes at www.ironmanlive.com. Peter Reid is apparently racing, I guess he heard I'd be in town. (That's a joke). Have a nice weekend, if you're into it send me some positive vibes on Saturday.

April 6 - So going out to watch the Tri America race may not have been such a good idea. Some sneezing bastard transmitted his or her virus to me. I have a cold. Excellent timing. Survived the whole 'flu' season thing and then get this. I've raced well before when under the weather so am not particularly (freaking pissed), but I'd certainly rather be 100% for IMAZ. Please send me your healthy thoughts ASAP.

April 4 - Nice weekend, went out and watched the TriAmerica race on Sunday. I'll be writing another article for the Orlando Sentinel Rush! section coming out this Friday. We take off for Arizona this week, the training has gone as well as it could have, so I am looking for a good day in Tempe. My weekly time volume the last 5 weeks has been ~21-24-25-16-14 for those of you into that sort of info.

April 1 - So I got a little lazy and grew a goatee this week. Finally, it's filling in.

It has gray hair in it.

Mar 30 - Witty comment. Double entendre. Colloquialism. Fini.

Mar 27 - Had a nice weekend with my favorite training partner. The Red Hills Triathlon was very nice, I would recommend it to y'all in the Southeast. Felt pretty good all around, according to the splits I ran 6:15 pace which is fantastic considering I have been doing very little speedwork in prep for IM Arizona (and like I've said before here, I have zero natural running speed). Felt strong on the swim bike and ran 8 miles after the race. Took second to the up-and-coming Kevin Collington of Gainesville. Today Bri and I rode 3+ hours on the St. Mark's Trail, a nice flat rails to trails project outside Tally.

Every time I go back to Tallahassee I'm reminded why I like the town so much. Besides the cheap beer and cool college vibe, it's a small town and after driving about five miles in any direction, you are out of town and into the woods. I am a tree-hugging hippie freak of nature at heart; things are much different living amongst the concrete jungles of Central Florida.

Mar 25 - It has been a busy week. We're off to race in the Red Hills Triathlon tomorrow morning in Tallahassee. Should be fun.

Mar 20 - Today was a good day to be a cyclist in Central Florida. Calm winds and about 70 degrees with low humidity. I rode across and all around town, meeting up with Bri on the east side for 52 miles in the flats and about 110 total. It turns out that Orange county is making some progress with our trail system, 2 of the bigger ones (Cady Way and Blanchard Park) are getting closer to being connected. Word on the street is that one day we will have a continuous trail system that goes all the way around Orlando. Of course, it's on the same construction schedule as I-4 (a terribly congested and torn-up highway, for those of you from out of town).

Mar 19 - 61m ride - 10m run this morning. Swim 3k in a bit. Ride 6hrs fairly easy tomorrow. Last big push before I start to back off.

Mar 18 - All the Bush horses, and all the Bush men, couldn't keep Terri from expiring again.

Mar 17 - So we'll be drilling in the Alaska oil refuge soon. It sure makes me feel better knowing that we're putting our resources towards farthinking policies like more drilling rather than science hokey pokey like renewable or alternative energy sources. Oil will always be there. It mysteriously reappears every few hundred years, you know. God makes it.

Mar 16 - I must share with you, the anonymous surfing public. Today was a good day. I had my performance review. I have been rated as a successful contributor. This beats my basic contributor status from last year by several degrees of semantic separation. No longer will people pass me in the hall and sniff, "There goes a 'two'. Wonder when he'll get canned?" Corporate Marty has arrived. To top it off, today I also hosted my first meeting to resolve some issues. Granted, once the meeting started I shut my mouth (I'd rather be thought a fool than open my mouth and remove all doubt), but hey, we all gotta start somewhere, right?

Mar 15 - Tuesday evening. Hope your week is going well. Not much to report here. Mayor Buddy Dyer has landed in the fire, I think it's time he retire. In other news, the world is still going to hell on a tricycle, and we ain't got no brakes. But I did have a good swim this morning.

Mar 13 - What a nice weekend. While the weather cooperated I got in some solid training consisting of a 63m bike/9m run on Sat AM, a 1.5m swim Saturday PM, and a 110m bike/1m run on Sunday AM. Also took 2 naps. Naps kick ass.

Mar 11 - I know this is supposed to be a dynamic and interesting forum, but man I get busy and tired sometimes. You don't wanna hear about that, do you? I suppose I could yick yack about Michael Jackson being a fruity perv getting what he deserves, or sideways sliding markets, great big big fatties, corrupt Orlando Gonzo Mayors straight out of a Carl Hiassen novel, or the sad passing of Hunter S Thompson who did not get the full mention he deserves. One day soon I'll be happy to write page after page of heart warming criticisms but for now the goal is to get to April 9 and IMAZ. Was that enough stream of consciousness to satiate your appetite for a glimpse into my head or should I continue with some terrible Dilbert-warrior cubicle haiku poetry? God Damn freakin' walls, earth rotating while you rot, must escape the cubes.

Mar 07 - So the Great Escape Tri was on TV Saturday, just not the channel I thought. You can check SunSports TV at 4pm and 10:30PM tomorrow for coverage.

Mar 06 - So the Great Escape Tri was bumped by NCAA women's basketball. I'm not sure what's more entertaining - skinny geeks in speedos or big women with balls. Anyway. Did my longest ride to date this AM - 5:50 pedaling time. Mileage less than you would think, I was able to generate about 10 watts going uphill. It's been a long week.

Mar 05 - The Great Escape Tri is on the Sun Network at 2pm on Saturday, break out the popcorn!

Mar 03 - So I broke through a barrier today and graduated from trigeek to ubertrigeek. Up at 4:30 AM to get in a mid-week long run. "And that's all I have to say about that."

Mar 01 - February training is up.

Feb 27 - Had a decent race this morning at the Great Escape Triathlon. It was cloudy and rainy. Swam well with a bit of navigation difficulty, rode strong with sore/tired legs, and did what I could on the run. The IM training has definitely impacted any sort of top-end run speed for the present moment, I may have been going just under 7 min pace (splits - 6:35/mile, very good for today!). 2nd off the bike and 4th overall, not a bad start to the 2005 season.

Feb 26 - Camp has been going well, everyone is having a good time. About half the campers and staff will be jumping in the Great Escape Tri tomorrow. I signed up today and am going to see what I can pull out of my blankity-blank. Have been standing or training with the campers for about 14 hours each the past 2 days.

Feb 24 - Master of the Obvious says, running 2 hours+ without that extra 10 lbs of lard on one's waist makes running much easier.

Feb 20 - So after watching Bri this AM, I came home and slept like a zombie for 2 hours. Then we went and got a nice breakfast at a local greasy diner. After that I drove out to Clermont for some hill work. I was inspired by the beautiful weather we had today (70, sunny, dry) and did a fairly tough circuit which included 3 repetitions of Buckhill - Stair Steps - 561A. Went up the backside of Sugarloaf to get some water after #2. 4 hrs saddle time. This is after doing a 3 x (~24, 3) brick yesterday. My legs are pretty cooked tonight.

Feb 20 - Congrats to my lovely lady Bri who dropped another 24 seconds to take 5th overall at the Run Around the Pines this morning. I played with the dog on the sidelines.

Feb 18 - So I did a little analysis today. Turns out my 'real' salary at my day job, adjusted for inflation, is slightly less in 2005 than what I was making in 2000. Hmmm.

Next weekend's camp should be a good time. We have 19 folks from up and down the East Coast and from all over Florida coming out for some fun.

Feb 14 - Good weekend. Couple long weeks ahead of me. Big bike miles this week. That's the plan. Not much new to report. The world's still turning.

Feb 11 - Week over. Ride tomorrow. Swim. Run? Party tomorrow night. Sunday run? ride? Lots to do.

Those of you who get a kick out of my Stockit Rocket (TM) picks will be happy to know that I took some sound advice and got out of Winn-Dixie a few weeks ago. I suppose we all should have sold it short. I absorbed a capital loss of about 30 bucks. Live and learn. W-D dropped ~25% yesterday.

Feb 8 - You won't hear me complain about my athletic and coaching endeavors as they're things I enjoy doing. But wow. Today I basically worked (or trained) from 5:45 AM until 10:30 PM. A message to anyone paying attention: opportunity typically doesn't fall in your lap - you have to go out and get it.

Feb 6 - Good weekend, managed another 5 hr ride on Saturday and followed it up with an improved 2005 5k time on Sunday. Ran 19:08 on a slow course and I got to watch my favorite lady take 2nd overall a few seconds later. OSB athlete Matt Thibodeau, in town for a convention, had an excellent PR run and took 5th overall. We all spun for nearly 2hrs after. All in all a good day.

Feb 4 - You might notice that my rants link has gone away. If you remember the page title I'm sure you can find it again. I've decided to host rants on their own site and provide some degree of separation between here and there. I'm sure some of you understand. The voices in my head told me it was a good idea. They also said "the ides of march go well with starch but the golden arch will leave you parched." I, too, don't know what the hell they're saying.

In other news, 100 ride tomorrow, swim PM, 5k run Sun AM, spin after, the wheels go round and round!

Feb 03 - I've posted my January training log if you're really bored. Not much going on. My new job is keeping me pretty busy and it seems my level of responsibility has gone up as well. You'd think a raise or promotion would be in order, wouldn't you? WOULDN'T YOU?!? SURE YOU WOULD, MR. CORPORATE AMERICA! YOU CAN'T KEEP A GOOD MAN DOWN! HOOZAH!!!

I'm sorry, did I say that out loud?

Jan 31 - Well, sure, Bri will tell ya how I mess up on occasion. What guy doesn't? But did she mention the beautiful early Valentine's day gift I brought home? Noo OOoooo. Grumble grumble. It's all in good fun.

Jan 30 - Good weekend. Yesterday was a 60m group ride in AM, 13 mile trail/hill run in PM. Today was a bit rough, I was smoking on the downhill tailwinds but everything else was pretty tough. 4.5hrs, off to get some new shoes then swim a bit.

Jan 26 - busy busy busy. Work school train sleep work school train sleep. work sleep train school? Who is this fool?

Jan 24 - It was a good weekend, am feeling a little beat today. My new job at work has quite a bit to do so not much time for goofing off. The good part is the day moves along pretty quick. The bad part is people actually expect me to get things done. Maybe I should ask for a raise? Ha ha! That's a joke! They don't give folks like me (who only work 40 hours a week) raises! Ha ha!

Jan 22 - I was sucked into what wound up being a 95 mile ride this morning. A bit of the ouch towards the end. Will swim later, run about 13 tomorrow AM, then spin a couple hours. I would yack about something else or other, but I need some coffee.

Jan 20 - So your scratching your head and thinking, "What the heck does this guy know about investments?" Well, everything I mention up here is for speculative purposes, meaning it should represent only a very small portion of your entire portfolio. Your core holdings should all be in casinos, tobacco, and defense mutual funds ;-) No, seriously now, the word on 'the street' is to go overweight in foreign stocks. That's your Pickit-n-Stickit (TM) tip of the day.

Jan 19 - My next Stockit Rocket (TM) pick is one I've already discussed in this venue: Krispy Kreme Doughnuts. Keep your eyes on it, while they're currently up to their eyeballs in problems, it's turnaround time in management. If the price drops below 5 or consider a small sum. Why should you take on this risk? It's simple. Krispy Kreme sells doughnuts, mostly in the US. The US is made up of lots of chubby folks who love sugary sweets. End of equation.

Jan 16 - Not a bad run this morning at the St. Pete Beach Classic, weather was pretty nasty (windy, cold, damp) but felt good to be out there. I'm not exactly setting the world on fire right now and a 4hr ride the day before didn't do much for my leg speed, but I was happy to run 39:18 with splits of 19:32 and 19:46. Left hip/tensor fascia/glutues medius continue to bug me sometimes...but the tightness and discomfort are tolerable. I'm telling ya, all you younguns out there, take care of your bodies now, because once you hit 30 the d@mn thing just starts falling apart.

The post race party was apparently quite a show (I went home for breakfast at Grandmas).

Jan 15 - Big news on the coaching front: OSB has another Boston Marathon qualifier as Doug Campbell ran a big PR for 3:11.14 today at the Aviation Marathon in Georgia. Congrats!

Jan 14 - My 2nd week of clean living has gone well. Asleep by 9 or 10, up by 5 or 6 to train/coach/work. I feel refreshed and upbeat. With the 10k this Sunday, we'll be looking at a recent record for days without booze. I'm not joking about qualifying for Hawaii this year!

Jan 13 - Class should be good, we'll be discussing derivative securities (options, swaps, futures) for the first few weeks. That's good because I'm pretty ignorant in this field.

Jan 9 - Not a bad training weekend, 3 hr ride and 1:10 run on Saturday, 2hr ride (trainer, I decided to sleep in) and strength on Sunday. We're still wrapping up some home improvement tasks so that's always fun. School starts this week, I'm actually looking forward to it: Analysis of Investment Opportunities. Will it be as simple as "preserve capital, mitigate risk, buy low, and sell high?" (I've been reading Ben Graham) Stay tuned...

Jan 8 - Did my first group ride of 2005. Felt pretty good but that may have been because the group was not interested in hammering too much of it. Off to a good start on my quest for IM Hawaii qualification, was in bed at 8:30 PM last night. No more Friday happy hours for now.

Jan 6 - Apologies to all ten of you who check this page out every once in a while. This week has been pretty busy and I've barely had a moment to stop and smell the dog poo. I've transitioned into a new position at work. I'm now a Reliability Engineer. Bri described it to a friend as such: "You remember in the movie Fight Club, the main character goes out to investigate manufacturing defects and then does a cost benefit-analysis of whether or not it's worth fixing? That's what Marty's doing!" So basically, I've just moved into a job that drove Tyler Durden stark, raving bonkers. Sweeeeet.

In other news, the coaching has gotten pretty busy of late, a number of folks are getting ready for the 2005 season, and I'm running a 2x a week morning program at the local YMCA. School doesn't start until next week, lucky me. Toodles!

Jan 2 - Great googly moogly. I boycotted using I-4 a few months ago. Add "anywhere in FL on a holiday weekend" to that list! We had a nice time in Ft. Lauderdale and I was able to jump into the International Swimming Hall of Fame 1 mile ocean swim on New Years day. Last time I did the race was 1988 or thereabouts. Those college kids all kicked my ass. So did some 50 year old dude. Time for me to start training like I'm supposed to be decent.