90 days until USARA Nationals and we just completed the first month of our new training cycle.  I’ll call it the easy month, although it never felt easy.  Our training plan has been based on Don Fink’s book, “IronFit Secrets for Half Iron-Distance Triathlon Success” but modified to fit adventure racing activities.


In Fink’s book, he has three workouts: The Competitive Program, The Intermediate Program, and the Just Finish Program. Given our commitments and available free time, we are doing the Intermediate Program with an average of 9.4 hours per week spent training and a max week of 11.8 hours.  Some of the changes we made were swapping the swimming workouts for canoeing and the road biking for either spin biking or mountain biking.  With two small boys, we don’t want to eat into our evening family time so our longest workout during the week is 1.5 hours with one long workout every Saturday.  This is very similar to what I did to prepare for the Blue Ridge Mountain AR and I felt well prepared for that event.

However, I’ve reluctantly come around to addressing nutrition. So, for month 2 of our 4-month plan we’ll start looking at food.  I’ve recently read Matt Fitzgerlad’s, “Racing Weight: How to Get Lean for Peak Performance” which has led me to his follow-on book, “Racing Weight Cookbook: Lean, Light Recipes for Athletes




I’m pretty sure that this is going to be the tougher month.  I don’t know why it is so hard to eat nutritious meals.  I guess it’s more of an issue of how convenient it is to eat bad meals.  Since I wasn’t sure if the first cookbook would have enough good stuff in it, I also ordered “The Runner’s World Cookbook.”  It was also highly recommended on Amazon.


What I really want is a cookbook that is 1 month of recipes, breakfast lunch and dinner with an attached weekly grocery list and calorie count/nutritional facts.  In other words, I don’t want to have to think about it.  Just tell me what to buy for the week and then give me daily recipes to follow.  Oh, and don’t include sweet potatoes…those things are disgusting.

If you’ve found a good workout or nutritional plan, I’d love to hear about it.  Post in the comments below.  And if you know of a good cookbook for athletes, post that as well. If you really want to know how our workout schedule is progressing, check out The Motivator box on the sidebar—>

It links to our training log on Attackpoint AR, training and competition logs for adventure athletes.

Lastly, if you want to check out these books, click on the links above and buy from Amazon.  They’ll send us a couple of nickels and that will go towards Nationals.



The Agony of My Feet – Book Review

Lately, I have been traveling a lot due to work and to pass the time I often download books on my Kindle Fire.  I just finished reading, The Thrill of Victory, the Agony of My Feet.  For a long time I hesitated on purchasing this book because, well honestly, I thought the title was stupid.  But, since Amazon doesn’t have a large selection of books on adventure racing, and my flight was rapidly approaching, I went ahead and ordered it.

The book turned out to be really good.  What is most interesting to me about the book is that it isn’t written by one person.  Rather, the book is a compilation of short stories from many different adventure racers.  Inside are articles from Ian Adamson, Mike Kloser, Robyn Benincasa, Robert Nagle–the heavy hitters in the sport of adventure racing.  But, there are also stories from unknown racers.  For some, their story focuses on their very first expedition length adventure race.  Other racers, who have been doing events for many years, talk about why they love the sport.

I recently finished watching all of the Eco-Challenge videos I could find on YouTube and many of the racers write about these races, offering insights that weren’t captured on the shows.  While many of the stories focus on the Eco-Challenge races, there were enough variations in point of view to keep the book from getting stale.  I would say though that this book is better read in segments rather than straight through.  I think if one was to read it straight through, the stories might get a little tiresome.  But, for an in-flight book or as a bathroom reader, it works perfectly.

While traveling I don’t have much motivation for working out so the book really helped getting my butt in the gym or out on a run.  When I found myself not wanting to train, I would read a short story from the book and it would get my pumped to go.  So, for $8 bucks on the Kindle, I would definitely recommend it.  Pick it up, thumb through it, get motivated and go race.

See you out there!