Tuesday, October 27, 2015

World Series 2015 Statement

I am a KC Royals fan through and through. I want them to win the World Series this year. I also need to make a statement for all of you friends of mine to help you understand where I stand on all of this stuff.

1. If the Royals are winning, I have absolutely nothing to do with it.
2. If the Royals are losing, I have absolutely nothing to do with it.

Many of you may feel inclined to text, FB, or tweet me some things like this; "Dude, you guys are killing it." "Dude, you gave up three runs in the 8th with 5 errors." and other well meaning things. If you feel compelled to send me a message through any means, make it something like, "I'm pulling for your Royals" or "I am NL guy and can only pull for the Mets because of that" "Or I am a Mets fan so that's who I'm pulling for." I can respect and handle those messages.

I don't need, "The Mets Suck!" "The Royals Suck!" or anything negative related to either team. You might mean well or you may just be a jerk, but either way, I would appreciate you sending positive messages and that includes Go Mets! if that is your honest bent.

I am pulling for the Royals. Hands down. Been a loyal fan since 1969 and that is not going to change. I don't hate the Mets (or the Giants who beat us last year in the World Series). I do however, strongly dislike the Yankees and would never pull for them, but you will see no messages from me hating on the Yankees. (That would be easy though.)

Looking forward to the games and Go Royals.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

#IMChatt (Warning - Sort of a long post!)

Some of you know that I have been training to complete an IRONMAN competition. Some of you know it all too well. I have posted to Twitter and Facebook incessantly and you have endured those posts. What you may not have known is that the reason I post my silly workouts is because there are many folks who hold me accountable to do the workouts. Twitter and FB are the easiest way to keep those few informed. Thanks for enduring.

If you have known me for awhile, you have known that I enjoy being outside; I enjoy physical exercise; I like to set some goals that I just cannot go out and accomplish without some pretty strong disciplined and regimented plans; and that I am a tad bit obsessive. (I may have understated that last statement.) I have a friend at work who has completed 8 IRONMAN competitions and a couple of years ago I went to support him at IRONMAN Florida. I wrote about it here if you are interested. It was at that event that I realized that I believed I could finish one of these events. I signed up for a half IRONMAN that I completed in April 2014 in New Orleans and then volunteered at IRONMAN Chattanooga in Sept. 2014 so that I could get a slot to compete in 2015.

I began a pretty rigorous training program in January preparing for a half iron distance in Georgia that Mark and I were going to compete in together. The weather turned bad the morning of that race and we were not able to do it. We did get a nice hoodie however. The training schedule I did was a 30 week schedule and I modified it a little, but I trained from 10-18 hours/week either swimming, biking, or running. It got a little tough to get the workouts in while traveling but I jumped on a lot of spin bikes at YMCAs. Throughout all the training, Sondra was my greatest supporter. She put up with me being out either biking or running on the weekends. That girl is so supportive of me and for that I am grateful.

I raced this past Sunday and many of you have already expressed your congrats and that sure means so much. We started out the race in the Tennessee River where about 2300 of us jumped in and started swimming DOWNSTREAM which was huge help to me. I pretty much claim to just survive the swim. Coming out of transition from the water to the bike, I saw all of my family and I have to tell you that seeing them throughout the day was the BEST part of the whole race experience.  I got changed into my biking clothes, saw my family again and got out on the bike for a pretty long ride. You ride a little through Chattanooga and then head south down into Georgia and some beautiful country side. It was fairly rolling terrain and picturesque. The temps were in the low 70s and it was overcast so it was not too hot. It is a two loop, lollipop shaped course, so you get to see everything twice. I felt good on the bike and averaged a little over 17mph. It was very humbling when the first Pro athlete lapped me when I was at mile 50 and he was at about mile 90. He was flying. You ride back into town and back into transition and as I dismounted my bike I saw my family and we hooped and hollered and I went into the transition tent to change from my bike to running clothes.

My friend Dave was also doing the race and I had not seen him since we jumped into the river together to start the swim which had been 8 hours earlier. He was killing the swim and the bike. I did see him in the changing tent, said, "Hey! How ya doing?" and fist bumped him and headed out on the run. Saw my family two more times coming out of transition and mentioned to them, "I just have a 26.2 mile cool down run left to go!" I felt really good and settled in to my pace. Two miles in I realized that I was soaking wet from sweat and that the sun was out and the humidity was high so I adjusted my mental state some to slow down and conserve some energy. There are aid stations every mile on the run so you never go far without something to eat or drink. There are pretzels, Gatorade, cookies, Red Bull, GUs, and many other assorted energy supplements. I saw the family again at mile 8 and was feeling good. Crossed the Tennessee River and got over to the Northshore section of Chattanooga and ugh! there were some major hills. I mean, HILLS. I slowed down, walked some and
realized I would see these jokers again since it was a two loop course. Came back across the River and started my second loop and had about 13 miles to go. Saw all of the family again, stopped and talked for a short minute (Wil caught me up on some ballgame scores) and then I set back out. I realized that I could do about a 2.5 hour .5 marathon and be finished by 9p so I was feeling okay about where I was out. Then . . . a short couple of minutes later I started feeling a little nauseated and just generally not very good. Not horrible, but not great. Drank some coke, ate some salt (sounds terrible I know) and then drank some chicken broth (really sounds terrible, but man, was it oh! so good). Got my feet back under me and started running again but not quite as fast. Saw a couple of friends who were volunteering and that gave me a boost. Passed the 20 mile sign and realized I only had a 10k to go and said out loud to whoever was around me, "We've got this! Anyone can cover a 10k!" Got some laughs and some thanks for saying that and then I picked it up a little. Saw Shelbi and Morgan just past the 20 mile mark and grabbed a glow ring so people could see me because it was starting to get fairly dark. Crossed the bridge again, up and down those stupid hills and then found myself about 2 miles from the finish. (The last 8-10 miles of the race I had been intentionally cheering for others on the course and hollering at all the volunteers in the aid stations thanking them for their service. They were wonderful!)

The last aid station is about 1.5 miles from the finish and the theme for that group of volunteers was
the Minions from the Despicable Me movies. I love the Minions and they make me laugh, so that group was my favorite! I hollered for them on my way by them and told them they were awesome and they hollered back, "No! You're Awesome!" I guess it fired me up because I picked up my pace quite a bit and was beginning to realize that I was going to complete this race. My feet just started carrying me to the finish. I had prearranged with my family that I wanted to stop and high-five, holler, kiss and celebrate with them before crossing the finish line. As I started coming into the finish chute it was pretty dark, but there were bright lights shining into my face drawing me to the finish line. I was slapping hands of spectators on both sides, I was hooping and hollering and my head was on a swivel trying to find Sondra, Shelbi, Mark, Morgan and Wil. I actually passed them about 10-15 yards and circled back and we had us a celebration! I mean, I was acting like a dumb fool celebrating with them and it was AWESOME! They had helped me so much leading up the race and definitely during the race. It is hard to describe how I felt. I hollered that I was going to cross the finish line and see them on the other side of the finish. I took off for the last 100-150 yards or so and slapped some hands and just drank it in. I slowed down because there was a guy ahead of me who was crossing the line and I wanted him to get his moment of YOU ARE AN IRONMAN! and I wanted to make sure that I heard and experienced, "Paul Turner, YOU ARE AN IRONMAN!" It was pretty cool.

So my day broke down like this - In the water about 7:40a for a 2.4 mile swim in 1:12:03; 116 mile bike ride in 6:47:53; and a 26.2 mile run in 4:41:42. My first transition was 11:04 from swim to bike; and the second transition was 7:54 from the bike to the run.

Total time - 13:00:36   I have been asked a couple of times about why just not hurrying up and beating the 13 hour mark. My two answers: 1. I had no idea that I was that close to breaking 13 hours, and 2. I don't care.

Thanks for cheering me on. Thanks for supporting me. You guys are great.

Yes, I will do another one. No, I will not train as hard and will not try to beat my time any time soon. Yes, you could do an IRONMAN. Seriously, you could. Discipline. Training and Desire. No. You do not have to do one. And yes, you can drive that far.

Total mileage - 144.6
Total calories burned - 10,046  I lost about 7 pounds and have only regained about 4 so far.

Post race report - I am not sore. Really have not been very sore. Yes, I am hungry. I have eaten a lot this week. And yes, I am tired. Monday was pretty good. Tuesday I was exhausted. Wednesday and today I am feeling more rested.