Wednesday, September 26, 2007

elmory pass

The last few days have been awsome!!!! Saturday was a epic hard ride with Will and Danny to hatch and i really tested myself with Will following all my move. It was great, 5h10 minutes of hard riding and some good watts.... Will had a light problem in the last hour of the ride but it was barely noticable and i m sure the people at the gaz station didnt notice anything special!!!!

Sunday was a bread and better day and monday was a amazing ride from Hillsboro on road 152. This place is magical. it s a 6000 feet climb that start from a ghost town. There is nothing there, no cell phone coverage and no cars.... it s extremly islotated and one of the most beautifull ride i have ever done in my life. You end up at elmory pass at near 9000 feet high in the cloud. There is a lot of deers and mountain lions. We actually got chase by a cougar(wildcat???) and Will had no choice but to drop is powerbar so the monster will let us go. But sparing the danger of cougar, deer and occasional grizzly bear that you can find at the highest point of the mountain, It s a place that really fuel me as i ride. I love the lonelyness of this area and the amazing twisty downhill!!!! We did about 9000 feet of climbing in 4h with a lot of 280+ watts riding(2h???) .

I will revisite this place again two more times before leaving for the big island of hawaii for the world championship. This sunday will be a 6h ride at hillsboro.... i hope the ghost will be there to help me out as it going to be a long and hard day! This time, i will have bear and cougar spray with me. Unfortunutly, my training parnter Will Ronco had to go back home as his girlfriend requested him to go back to colorado.... i heard she is the one wearing the pants!!!!!! Stephanie..... send Will back please!!!!

i m leaving for kona on the 4th of october and will be there for 2 weeks. I m looking forward to get there and start resting for the race!
today was a small day: 50 minutes run, 2h ride z2 and 4km swim.....

Friday, September 21, 2007

a few days in HELL

Ironman canada as hit me pretty hard this week. The last few days havent been so much fun, difficult to train and no energy... my body isnt acting normaly and i feel the worst when relaxing..... i actually cant relax and just feel stress out!!! i was thinking of going out and drinking all night but didnt find anyone to come out with me!

anyway, i think i m still doing very well in this weird transition and should hopefully get my energy back so i can get some solid training. I m amaze at how guys like Peter Reid and Thomas Hellergiel did back up IMC and IMH at the top level.....very impressive!

double swim today, and a 2h ride.... i have done 7 swim so far and should get to 9 swim this week!!!! i m trying hard to be a fish !!!!! i love swimming outdoor!

here s the 3 official song of my ironman hawaii build up.... i know... i have weird music taste!!!

number 1

number 2

number 3

Monday, September 17, 2007

Been part of the herd or making your own path???

I do like a lot this picture as you can see someone been part of a group. Someone that follow others and find reassurance in been part of the normality. Been with others, doing like them, following there path. It s a cool picture.... i wonder if this person as ever think of taking his on path, having a crack at it and laying it all down so he will have complete satisfaction to know what he can or can't do and what needs to be done next. I think we learn a lot from others, but it s in the individual moment that we learn to more about ourself. Dont be affraid to explore your limit and boundary....... i dont know how this race unfolded but i hope the guy at the back had a crack at could only be a very valuable learning experience.

Well, i m one of the group this week, i have a few training partner in town and i m very happy to have them around. Tonight was a great run with Will and Danny and it s been great to have them around as i been going in a bit of a dark hole in the last few days. I havent been taking any pictures and have been very social. To be honest, i have reach very high level of grompyness in the last few days. I been looking a lot like the picture up ........not a happy camper but more like a guy that just finished a ironman and want to have is cake and eat it.

But today was a lot better, my body is coming back to life after a great meal at McDonald's and tons of other good food to put me back into training mode. Sleep, eat, train, go say hello to the lifeguard......
today was another a 3km swim

1h45 bike z2

50 minutes run at steady sliky pace
fun day!!!

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Dark day but there is a light at the end of the tunnel!

Well, i been having a very solid week of training, but yesturday was a bit difficult as i got sunburn and was completly exhausted at the end of the day. This moring when i woke up, i could not get going, i was feeling terrible, like a train ran over me! I didnt work out and took a day off. I think ironman canada as caugh up to me. I m not sleeping too well and my nutrition havent been perfect!. It s time to focus really hard to stay on track. HTFU and follow what paulo tells me to do. I still have 2 big goals to reach before the end of the season and i will work really hard toward this and get the work done!

I still went to the pool to swim 500m and just move a bit and take some fresh air. Well, it was a really good move, as when i got out of the pool, i exchanged a smile with this super cute lifeguard and a ''how are you doing'' and i finaly saw the light at the end of the tunnel!!!! I found a new motivation to go back to the swimming pool everyday to go say hello to Courtney!!!!

ok....tomorow i will be back on the right track!!!! and thank you Danny for this awsome donation!!!! i finaly have a real bed to sleep on!!! the airmatress can go back to the closet after 1year of use!!!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Las Cruces, the secret heaven

In the last 2 years, i been coming back a few times to this very special retreat in the south part of New Mexico. The city of Las Cruces at a elevation of 4000 feet is a secret heaven that not many people know about. It was a population of 75 000 people, many cows and roadrunners, and few rattlesnacks. There is also a pretty nice univeristy, NMSU with a beautifull outdoor 50m pool and a 25m inside pool. The roads are quiet and mostly flat. The scenery is amazing with the majestueuse Orange mountain range east of the city and the rio grande river flowing on the west side of town. Las curces was before a crossing path between texas arizona and mexico but is now a center of agriculture.

There is something special about this place, it feels like home here. It is very hot at the moment and very windy and make for very difficult training conditions. Today was 37 degres and the strong dry wind was definitly testing me on the 3.5h ride.

New Mexico is call The Land of Echantement, well, i do beleive it s a amazing place that as been forgotten over the year and is worth rediscovering. There is many ghost town, the Trinity side where the first ever Atomic bomb was tested 50 years ago?? and also home of the giant White sand missile range. there is even a 10km runnway for the space shuttle to land in case of emergency!!!!!
So here we go, you guys now know my secret training place. If you see a cyclist on the road, it s most likely me or Danny as there is only us on the road..... and a few cars from time to time.... you can also find us near the river or in the Orange mountain range running in the hilly trails and getting the work done. There is a lot of lonely hours of training here and plenty of time to reflect on the why and what so when you show up to races, everything become very clear......i really like it here, this place and the people as been very good to me lately......

today:3.5h z2 windy, strong legs

Swim: 8X400m on 5' average 4:32s 4km total..... another meat and potato day!!!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

The quiet life.....

here s a few picture i receive from ironman canada. Guess witch one show a sign of releif????!!!

so yesturday was a awsome 3h ride and a 4km swim......

i been feeling good so far but can still feel that i have done a ironman 2 weeks ago. I have to be very carefull to not over do it and keep the heart rate low. I havent lost much fitness since ironman canada and i do think i will be in very good shape in hawaii in 4 weeks!
Not much new in Las Cruces, it s a very quiet life where i train, rest, sleep and eat. My only interaction is with the lifeguard at the pool or my coach paulo or danny if i get the chance to see him.....

ran for 1h10 today in hilly trails....feel awsome again.....

rode 90 minutes easy and finish with a 3km swim with a 19 minutes 1500m pull paddles....

going to bed.... more training tomorow!

Monday, September 10, 2007

Here is the famous Peter Reid costum specialized transition. Now, the funny part is that this bike wasnt available for purchase, the commercial specialized transition was a very badly design bike. It wasnt a real triathlon bike with slack seat angle, very long head tube, and slop top tube. A very bad design from a huge bike company...

The Peter Reid bike is simply text book, 76 degres seat tube with easy possibility to put a forward seat post, very nice aero tube on the down tube and seat tube, chain stay and seat stay. The heat tube is short and make for a very aero setup. This bike was smartly conceive and should have been the real bike for production but i just dont understand the decision of specialized to go with there other option that was jsut plain ugly???

Anyway, it s now my coach paulo that is riding the PR004 specialized frame..... only a few more in circulation....

today was another meat and potato day with 50 minutes Z2 run, 8 stride and 90 minutes of z2 bike. Still feeling good and not overly tired from ironman canada. I m slowly getting back into a routine and will keep rolling along this week with endurance workouts at lower intensity. Going to bed early as tomorow will be a bigger day!!!

Sunday, September 9, 2007


Today was a fun today sitting at home and watching the live coverage of ironman Wisconsin! my friend Zach Ruble had a solid day coming of the water in good position and riding so strong that he broke his bike stem and had to finish the last 12 miles of the ride holding the handlbar together!!! He posted a lightning fast 2:58 marathon to take 7th place only 3 minutes off from the podium!!!!

Way to go DUMPSTER!!!, i m looking forward to see you back in Las Cruces for some fun training and McDonald expeditions!!!!

I still manage some training today:
1h run today feeling awsome and bouncing on the trails.

4km swim with 10X100m Im/1:30 and 1000m pull paddle!!! feeling great so far!

i m starting back on paulo's schedule tomorow, time for serious work!!! All the swim set i mention are my own creation....Paulo as no power on me when in the water, he can only use is autority on me when i m on land!!!!! The swim program is all about me!!!

Saturday, September 8, 2007

I can't beleive i manage to put on 10lbs in two weeks!!!! I m huge and it s time to get back to training now. Only 5 weeks before hawaii, i m very curious to see how it will turn out as it is so close form ironman canada. I m presently in Las Cruces with my coach paulo and i m training in the heat and altitude. I have also my friend Danny montoya that live here and his training for hawaii also.

today was 2h45 minutes of z2 biking, paulo came along for part of it....
swam 1500m!!!! all easy

tomorow is ironman wisconsin so it wont be easy to train.... i need to watch and cheer on for bigzach!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
good night!!

Genetic......a word i dislike a lot!!!!

This is a picture that make me very proud. When i passed the line, the reality hitted me. Never in my life i would have think it was possible. I receive so much attention at the finish that my brain had to focus on interview and friends and family. But now that i have time to reflect, i m finaly realising how special that day was for me. It took 14 years of training, a millions of people to support me and help me out...many coaches, doctor, friends, training partners. I wish i still had the picture of chubby jonny finishing my first half ironman in 6h42 minutes. That would really give a good picture of the journee so far.

So, what about the word genetic. Well, many people in the last 2 weeks have told me how amazing my race was and how ''gifted'' i was and lucky to have the ''right genetic'' to do this stuff. To me, it s like a kick in the face, the ultimite insult that someone can send my way. They also tell me how much they would love to have the ''right genetic'' to race like this.

Well, 14 years ago when i started triathlon, i was the slowest athlete in the club espoir de hull. I was a 55 minutes 10km runner. I was a 29 minutes 1.5km swimmer and was ablet to ride 27-29km/h on my bike for a few hours. I was getting beat all the time by the people of my age or younger. Nobody would have ever called me a gifted athlete. After 5 years of intensive training, my coach at the time told my training partner that it would be a lot better for me to go back to curling as i definitly didnt have what it take to get good at this. My results werent great and he said i would not go anywhere in that sport....Thank you coach... i didnt listen to you and kept on working toward getting better at it.

i got diagnose with crohn disease at age 17. The doctor said i would have to change my lifestyle and avoid hard physical activity.... i didnt really listen as i had too much fun doing triathlon and as hard as it was to have to go to bathroom 6 time during a race.... sometimes on people yard in middel of races or in the middel of the lake.... i keep on working towards getting better at it.

I made it to university where i train with the cross country team and swimming team. The coaches told me right away that i would not make the competition team as i was obviously too slow and no dramatic progression would be big enough to change this. I was also told by the swim coach that i was too slow to swim at our local meet and he tried to talk me out of it for fear of humiliating the swim team. Thank you coach.... swam anyway

Well, when i made it to the national training center a few years ago, i once again wasnt a star and mostly one of the slowest athlete there. I once again, had my share of last places in the races at the national and international level and was getting my ass kick. But i keed on working at getting better at it.

now, millions of km later, after 14 years of sacrifice and small and tiny consistant improvement, working with amazing coaches, leaving work and training full time, sleeping on floors of friends house or homestays, putting all my money into this and often sacrifying friendship and relationships with very special people, i had a exceptionnal day and crossed the line at ironman canada in 8h39 minutes. Instantly, jonnyo the geneticly retarded athlete was now see by people that dont know him as a gifted elite athlete that as a special genetic inside of him to make him go this quick. Well, people just dont see the big picture, only the 2007 version of the athlete that i became. They dont see the other 13 years behind..., the coaches that have try to turn me away as i wasnt a good enough athlete......these 13 year where no magic....just consistant work. I like that my coach keep on telling me after each good race, <>!!!!!

Now, someone made me realise i m truly very lucky. it s true, i have amazing parent that give me a lot of support, i m surrender by amazing people and coach, i have people beleiving in me and not everyone as the same opportunity. I also have a very ridicoulous amount of positivity and enormous amount of beleiving in myself that nothing is impossible. I been raise by my parents with the mentality that if you really want it, you can do it, you just really need to want it bad enough and do everything for it and never give up. I 100% beleive in this, and live by it.

but i sure dont feel like i have anything special other than the average age grouper at a ironman on a physical point of view... i just took a different path in live that mainly focus on exploiting that components of myself. Mostly everyone could do the same if they took a similar is probably very hard to beleive by many of you but it was also for me. I had a lot of douth and set back, but by thinking about only small improvement..... and focusing on small end up making it a long way in 14 years..... (i would not have beleive it 14 years ago)

now that i got this out of me, i do feel a lot better, time to get back to training and see if i can make it to the truly elite level of triathlon...... i dont know if i can but i will sure give it a shot and see where this journee goes....lets focus on small improvement and we will see in a few more small step at the time....