Metabolic Efficiency Training–Phase 1?

For the past few months I’ve been researching how to be more metabolically efficient in my nutrition.  I knew the concepts of burning more fat for fuel and it’s something I’ve slowly been researching.   Let’s face it, I got a lot of stored fat and I want to use that for fuel.   So I went out and got the book by Bob Seebohar and read it and understood most of it.   In fact I liked the concept so much to where I researched into how to become METS certified for my own up and coming coaching business.

Here is a clip from the Amazon page about ME (Metabolic Efficiency).

“Teach your body to burn more fat to improve health and performance. The concept of Metabolic Efficiency (ME) can be applied to individuals just beginning exercise, fitness enthusiasts and the seasoned athlete. ME describes the relationship between the body’s ability to use fat and carbohydrate as energy sources across a variety of exercise intensities. Being more of a "fat burner" will allow you to improve your health, reduce risk for chronic disease, lose weight and body fat, improve athletic performance and eliminate gastrointestinal (GI) distress. The second edition of Metabolic Efficiency Training: Teaching the Body to Burn More Fat has been enhanced to provide more nutrition and exercise prescription strategies for individuals of all ages, abilities and fitness/sport interests. This book will provide very specific nutrition and exercise recommendations that will guide you through each training cycle with the end goal of improving your ability to use fat as fuel. Gone are the days of needing to consume a high amount of calories during training and competition. By improving your body’s metabolic efficiency, it is possible to significantly reduce the amount of calories you need during exercise. The end result will be improved health and performance with significantly reduced chances of GI distress.”

So now that you know the just of it and why I wanted to move down this path.  I knew what I needed to do, and that’s hire a coach!   Thankfully a fellow Ironman and fellow Base Performance Ambassador Jessica Baxter of Baxter Performance is just that!   So I signed up with her 12-week program and off I went.  I’d say I’m 1 week into the program, I’m keeping my carbs low and proteins and fats high and down 10lbs already.   Wait, low carbs high fat/protein?   Sounds like an Atkins or Ketogenic diet?   It’s not, cause both of those diets want your carbs to be well under 40G’s a day.   I need to still go out and get my workouts on.  That my friends is where Generation UCAN comes in.   While it does have carbs, it’s a superstarch carb that doesn’t spike my insulin levels which kill my fat burning process.   In fact I used it during my last 3 hour training ride and felt great the entire time.

More to come as I go through this and share my experience, but lets just say that I’m eating a LOT more greens, bacon, and avocados!   I’m finding it incredibly easy to keep things low carb and high protein/fat as long as I’m making it myself.  Once you touch anything processed you shoot yourself right in the foot.

Carlsbad Triathlon–Getting Back On Track

CarlsbadI signed up for this race 2 weeks before the race on a whim.  I have never done this race before so figured why not?  I’ve always volunteered as a swim buddy at this race and it’s a lot of fun.  It’s an actual ocean entry start and like previous years the waves didn’t disappoint.  I figured it’s just a sprint and what happens happens, although secretly I put a lot of pressure on myself in this race since I race Clydesdale it was to podium.  I didn’t really focus on what position I was in during the race and I was still having fun.  I rode 42 miles the day before and ran a mile right after.   I had to keep telling myself this isn’t an A race this is a just cause race.  It’s a local race and lots of friends were doing it, so it was a nice little social happy hour for me sort to speak.   I think it’s what I needed to get my head back into the training game and out of the little run I’d been in for the last couple weeks.

So a really quick race report for the Carlsbad Triathlon.

This is a small hometown race, but I found out very fast that it’s highly competitive even at the Clydesdale level.  There were about 40 of us, I took 5th.  I had 3rd for most of the race till the last mile when I started to ease up a bit, but I didn’t mind at all.  Ocean entry swim with plenty of waves crashing down.  Swam about 1400M in 21 minutes.  I took my time putting on my socks and off I went.  The bike started uphill and then it was up and down the coast with some rollers.  It was 15 miles and I cruised at 20.5 MPH and felt pretty good through the whole thing.  Coming into T2 it was all downhill so they really made us go slow.  The run started off flat and I was just cruising a casual pace or so I thought (it was really 9 min miles) so I had to slow it down a bit and cruise around 9:30 miles.  I was hitting 9:20 miles up until the final .25 miles of uphill to the finish line.  I walked a bit and talked to some friends, and cheered some of the other racers on.  After all I didn’t train for this race and I certainly didn’t train any speed work for it.  Over all it’s a great race and I’ll probably do it again next year.  5th out of 40 something… I’ll take it.

So last week leading up to the Carlsbad tri I really felt like I was in a rut.  It happens when you’re essentially training for over a year straight with a week off here and there.  Your mind goes to dark places where you question what the F*&K you’re doing.  Those negative thoughts creep in and start chipping away at you.  I tell all my athletes that I coach or help with that you have to take control of those voices.  You can’t let them control you.  I was letting them chip away at me still sitting around 240lbs, and not being in better shape than I was last year.  I was letting the fact that my HR rates were still so ridiculously low for the amount of effort, along with the fact that my power zones were even below.  I was getting frustrated at myself.  I knew it wasn’t going to get me anywhere either.  Everyone has their own ways of dealing with them, and I guess with mine it just took some time getting off the trainer and on the road a long with a race on the whim and no pressure to podium.

So this week so far, I’ve hit my workouts (except for swimming in the pool, I swam in the ocean instead).  I’ve started actually eating some more food as well.  Ironman Louisville isn’t going to train for itself and I have to make sure I focus on it a bit more.

Exercise Associated Hyponatremia – What You Need to Know

Susings

Unfortunately, another completely avoidable death occurred during Ironman Frankfurt this past weekend. Per the report, the athlete replenished fluid loss with pure water rather than also supplementing with electrolytes, which effectively diluted blood levels of sodium causing brain swelling that ultimately lead to his death.

As such an important topic, a whole conference exists to discuss low sodium in athletes called the International Exercise-Associated Hyponatremia (EAH) Consensus Development Conference. Ironically, it just met for it’s third annual meeting and released updated guidelines on this phenomenon.

Here’s the full-text of their updated guidelines.

But I’ll summarize them for you (in English):

1. Exercise Associated Hyponatremia is low sodium in your blood from loss of sodium in sweat and/or taking in excessive amounts of water (without sufficiently replenishing electrolytes).

2. You can have low sodium and not notice, or you can have symptoms ranging from lightheadedness, fatigue, muscle cramps and nausea to a…

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Where did June Go? Ironman Louisville 3 Months and Counting!

In the month of June I managed to spend it traveling almost every weekend.  After recovering from the Escape from Alcatraz triathlon it was time focus on training.  It wouldn’t be without some hurdles but early on is the best time.  I spent the last 3 weeks in Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, New York, and Rhode Island.  It was a whirlwind of a month and I managed to visit 3 amazing YMCA’s in the process all at no extra cost.   I still had to get in my training and with no bike I had to resort to some spin classes and pools at the Y’s that I was going to be around.

The YMCA in Wisconsin was super clean and included an indoor track and indoor pool and children’s play area with water slides and all!  Yes I had some fun after swimming some laps and played like a kid.  Their spin bikes even had aero bars!  It makes me wonder why our YMCA in Mission Valley can’t get some, since there are a lot of triathletes there.  Funny though it didn’t get crowded at all for the entire 2 hours I was on that spin bike in the main gym area.

The YMCA in Pennsylvania was also super clean and had everything that the Wisconsin YMCA had, except thanks to the storms I didn’t get to swim.  Everyone here though was extremely nice and there were a lot of people too.  I kind of wish that it was the YMCA that could be sat right on top of Mission Valley.

The YMCA in Staten Island, well let’s just say that this one should be replaced by the Mission Valley YMCA.   However it’s in Staten Island and it would probably not last.  The spin class here though was quite eventful.  They didn’t have passes like we have here.  They had a sign in sheet and let me tell you, they take that list very seriously.   As far as the workout goes, I thought it was more like Soul Cycle, and it wasn’t all that great.

Once in Rhode Island though I had a rental bike and Friday the 3rd I was able to really ride around and rack up some mileage.  Rode from Rhode Island into Massachusetts and it was an awesome experience.  Very little cars on the roads out there, and the scenery is just amazing.  I could probably ride out there all day long.  There were no sidewalks were I was so it was running on the opposite side of the street which was a different experience as well.   I did most of my running in the middle of the day, otherwise I’m sure I would have enjoyed it much more.

Ironman Louisville, holy smokes Oct 11th is coming up fast.   This will be my second Ironman, and it almost seems unimportant to me.  It doesn’t seem to have the same excitement that IMAZ had last year.  Maybe it’s because there isn’t a group of my friends in San Diego doing it, but it seems like a solo journey this time around.   Even the Louisville Facebook Group doesn’t have that same excitement as the IMAZ groups.  It’s certainly going to be a trip though.