Thursday, September 30, 2010

FREE GU!! Island Nectars 6 pack

Our friends at GU have come up with a new limited edition flavor call Island Nectars.  Are they good?!?  I have no clue but you can get it for free if you have qualified for Kona.  Well, I would have qualified for Kona this year but I wanted to give everyone else a chance at winning the race.

If you did not qualify for Kona you can still get a free 6 pack of the new Island Nectars GU with any purchase at Free Island Nectar GU
Frayed Laces describes the new flavor as "incredibly reminiscent of a Mai Tai."  She also says it's (cover the ears of any small children in the room) "frickin' delicious."  I can not imagine any GU being delicious unless it was beer flavored but a change in flavors is always great.  I plan on ordering some later today.

If you have tried this new flavor please post a comment with your thoughts.  I will post a review after I try it.

BTW: You can get even more free GU when placing your order  There is currently a special on GU Roctane.  Buy 2 Roctanes and get 1 free.  You can combine this with your FREE order of Island Nectars.  Orders over $100 get free s/h.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Cycling Groups and Rides in the Orlando / Central Florida Area

Cycling Groups and Rides in the Orlando / Central Florida Area

Many people have been asking me about local area rides and groups so I decided to make a quick post.  Below are the groups and ride lists for the Central FL area (Orange, Seminole, Osceola, etc).

Hal Downings Newsletter:
Hal Downings is a local attorney who publishes a weekly email newsletter about rides in nearly all the counties in the central FL area.  His newsletter is AWESOME and he does a great job.  This is THE source for cycling rides in this area.  You will need to email him here to get onto the mailing list.  Register for his newsletter now!! An old example of his newsletter can be found here.

This is a great cycling group!!  I am currently a member of this group. Their ride schedule can be found here.  They always publish the distance and the speed with their rides so you can find one that fits your skill and abilityThey are also known to be prompt so be on time.  They are very social, friendly and inviting group.  They have riders at every level.  Even though they say on some rides "don't be afraid to be dropped". I have never seen anyone get dropped on any level ride they conduct so don't let that waver you.  They also publish the contact information of the ride leader if you have questions.  Everyone I have contacted has been prompt at answering my questions.

Armada Racing 
I am not familiar with this group but they appear to be out of the Orlando area.  They have a nice list of rides with the various groups in the area.  Click here and then click on Rides (located on top of the page).  If you know anything about this group please post a comment about them.

I have never rode with this group so I know nothing about them.  Their ride list can be found here. If you know anything about this group please post a comment about them.

Eastside Cycling Club
I know nothing about this group.  I have seen them on rides but I have never rode with them.  Their rides can be found here or here. If you know anything about this group please post a comment about them.

Windermere Roadies
Caution: if you do not consider yourself a GREAT rider don't bother showing up for their rides.  They will drop you like its hot in seconds.  These guys are good, darn good!  Their routes are tough and great.  Their Sunday rides are described as "whether you are a beginner or an experienced racer, the Sunday ride has something for you." That is a load of manure.  They are all A+ level riders on that ride and will drop you within the first 6 miles.  They also state "Marsh Road is always very fast and it's usually where the group will break up into several packs of different skilled riders"  Translation: "that is when your sorry butt will be dropped and lost".  The last ride I did with them I was dropped on Marsh Road and my 55 mile ride became 75 miles because we got lost.  This was another "Lost Boys" experience I will have to share with you one day.  Bonnie thought I was dead and she wanted to kill me when I showed up late to the house.  Angel and I were on the back of milk cartons for weeks.  Also bring bread crumbs because if you are not familiar with the area their maps are useless.  Every street has two names and some of the names they give you are not the names on the signs at the turns (example: Semoran aka SR436).  They were also not very social (at least not to us).  Not one person said hi to us and they did not hand out route maps.  Maybe they are nicer once they know you and you prove you can hang with them.  One day I hope to be at their ability. If you are REALLY FAST this is the group for you.  A list of their rides can be found here.

Local Bike Trails and Maps can be found here and at TrailLink.Com.

Local Cycling Events can be found here

Another list of rides can be found here

I may have miss some local groups.  If so, let me know and I will add them to this list.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Ride-4-Ronald 2010

Ride-4-Ronald 2010

Sunday I participated in the Ride-4-Ronald charity ride.  The donations for this ride went to the Ronald McDonald House of Central FL.  This is a great non-profit that “provides home-away-from-home for these families in medical crisis. Before the Ronald McDonald Houses, being with a hospitalized child meant parents were sleeping in their cars or in chairs in the waiting room, eating out of vending machines, or bearing the expense of impersonal hotel rooms” (

Bonnie and I before the ride
The race offered a 30mi, metric century (67mi) and a century (100mi).  I chose the metric century. Bonnie did the 30mi ride. This was my first race doing a metric century.  I have done a few with my friend Angel before but this was the first “official” ride.  The other rides were not planned to be long rides but the “lost boys” took a wrong turn and ended up really lost like usual.  I will have to blog about the “lost boys” some day.  There will be some funny stories to share about this.  (We want to get a set of custom jerseys made up so if you know of someone who does custom jerseys email or comment me there website.  I only need two made up.)

Fellow Lost Boy, Angel

From what I understand this was the first time they have ever put on this ride.  In some ways they did a great job and in others ways they needed improvement. 

Having Fun!
One area they needed improvement was in the number of portable toilets.   They only had three for several hundred riders.   The wait took forever and many people missed the start of the race.  The route markings were really bad also.  The spray paint on the road was really hard to find and in some places appeared to be missing.  There were also several other non-related markings that through some riders off course.  Oh course, Angel and I got lost and added a few miles onto the metric century. 

The ride itself was pretty dangerous.  It had too many really busy roads, stop lights and intersections.   Most of these roads did not have a bike lane, had tons of traffic or were narrow.  This is not a route I would ever choose to do again.

Angel & Me (Angel is in the black spandex on the bottom right)

At one point in the race we had three riders collide and fall on the road.  Luckily it was a slow collision and no one was hurt but they fell in the middle of the road.  A cop went past them and turned around to “check on us” but he did not care that someone had fell and was hurt.  The only thing he said to the downed rider was to “get out of the road”.  He did not even ask if anyone was hurt or if he could help.  What a jerk!! 

Volunteers serving goodies!!

They did a great job in many areas. The SWAG points were at McDonalds restaurants along the ride.  They offered water, food and a place to rest.  They did a really nice job here and the volunteers were great.  After the race there were a team of massage therapists giving free massages.  There was plenty of free Myoplex, sports drinks, soda, water and pizza.  They raffled off a bike and other goodies.  They also had many triathlon bike racks so you had a place to set your bike before and after the race.  There was also plenty of easy and free car parking,

Humble Triathlete and Me
Along the ride I met up with the Humble Triathlete.  She was a great person to talk to, was really friendly and humble.  I was able to get a picture with her and meet her husband.  I hope to see her again at other events.  I really enjoyed meeting and talking to her.  He is an inspiration and I hope to be able to do half of what she has accomplished.

The REAL Ronald McDonald

I even got a picture with the REAL Ronald McDonald.  He was so much cooler than the fake Santa you see everywhere.  I approached him to ask for a picture but before I could say anything Ronald said “Dude, where did you get that jersey.  I want a picture with you.  Anyone who likes Pink Floyd can get a picture anytime.”  Obviously Ronald was a Pink Floyd fan. 

Crazy Eyes Jersey
The new jersey was a hit.  I had several people including Ronald McDonald comment on how they liked it.  Others who were do young to know Pink Floyd just wondered why I had huge eyes on my jersey.  Several riders went past me and said it’s the dude with the crazy eyes jersey. ;-)

The Crowd
Over 580 people showed up to the ride and by all accounts it was a success.  The Ronald McDonald House raised over $70,000 and everyone had fun.  I would do it again next year if they changed the route some.

UPDATE: 10/05/2010: Race photos can be found here.

Well, another race in the books (not the record books).

9/19/10 - 9/24/10 Training

9/19 Sun     39m B ride with the Freewheelers (my best ride ever)
9/20 Mon    Off
9/21 Tue     1hr Chest and Legs (super sets)
9/22 Wed    1hr Biceps and Triceps (super sets)
9/23 Thu     1hr Back
9/23 Fri       Off
9/24 Sat     12th Annual Chick-fil-a Miracle Miles 15k race

12th Annual Chick-fil-a Miracle Miles 15K race

12th Annual Chick-fil-a Miracle Miles 15K race

The summers here in Florida are brutal for runners.  Even if you get up at 4-6 AM it can be in the mid 80s with a ridiculous humidity.  So I decided to take the summer off running and focus on my swimming and cycling.

Saturday marked my first running race back since taking off the summer.  It was the 12th Annual Chick-fil-a Miracle Miles 15K race.  This race was run by Track Shack of Orlando so you know it is going to be a well organized race (which it was). The weather was overcast and sprinkled lightly during some of the race.  It was definitely not as hot as last year but it was still in the mid 80s. 

 The 15K race had over 1700 runners and the 5K had 1508 participants so it was well attended.  Several dozen vendors handed out great food.  They had crab dip with chips, ceviche, yogurt parfait, pot roast sandwiches, Asian salad, key lime pie, bananas, watermelon, water, etc.  Chick-fil-a gave you a coupon for a free spicy chicken sandwich which we got and ate after the race.  I love those!!

 This race is held right in the middle of Orlando and the course follows the roads I take every day to go home.  It even comes within a block of my house.  It is not a very scenic route and is pretty darn boring to run.  This made passing the time really hard.

The night before the race I met some friends for a few pints and got very little sleep thanks to my pets waking me up every hour for food, potty breaks and the cat just wanting to be a pain in my neck.  This caused me to start the race in a slight daze but I soon settled into the run.  I hate running along and like to find someone to pace with and kill the time.  I started off the first 3 miles talking to two local triathletes but I soon pulled away from them and met up with an Ironman.  He told me all his stories and they helped to pass the time.

I finished the race with a chip time of 1:31:05 with an average pace of 9:46:3.  I finished 71st out of 113 runners in my age group and 690th out of 1713 runners overall.  Not bad considering I have taken several months off running and was in a sleepless daze.  My race pace from last season was very close to a 9 minute pace and I think I will soon get back to that point. 

 This race was special because the whole family decided to run it.  Triston (my step-son) is training for his first half marathon.  This race was the longest run he has ever done and he did great.  He was not a rocket (neither am I) but he completed the race strong and looked great.  Soon he may be able to keep up with this old man but he will never pass me ;-) .  (Triston stop reading this blog at school and get back to paying attention to your work).  His next race is his big day, the Florida Halloween Halfathon 13.1. 

 Bonnie met up with some friends who were trying to qualify for the Washington DC race so she ran with them and she had a good race also. (She does not read my blog so she will never see this).

So another race in the books (not the record books).  Tomorrow (Sunday) I have the Ride-4-Ronald metric century ride so I need my rest.  I hope to see the Humble Triathlete there.  She said she would be in attendance doing the metric century.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Le Tour De Donut
Now this sounds like my kind of bike race!!

“The ‘Tour De Donut’ bike race is a spoof on the ‘Tour de France’. This appetizing 30 mile bike race is a fun race with rest stops every 10 miles where racers can get water, fruit, first aid, use the bathroom, and get delectable DONUTS. For every tasty donut eaten, a temp-ting three minutes are deducted from your official finish time. There are only two rules: All donuts must be eaten in the “Donut Zones” and if you toss your cookies- you’re DQ’d.” (Klackle Orchards Family)

At the end of the race you get fresh squeezed cider, apple crisp donuts and a free pancake brunch.  This is a race where you gain weight instead of losing it.

You are required to eat donuts every 10 miles?!?!  The only better race would be a race where you have to chug beers.

 It looks like there are a couple of these rides around the country (Other "Tour de Donut" races).

Recumbent “Air” Bike

This is pretty cool.  I was going to the gym today and saw this cycling/blowing through the parking lot.  The gentleman built it himself.  It’s an 18 speed recumbent bike with a lawn mower engine that drives a small airboat like fan.  He was cycling through the parking lot at about 12mph without using the pedals.  That is pretty impressive considering the weight of the bike.  You can still use the pedals like a normal bike so you can go even faster. He said he has hit 30-40 mph on the bike before.  

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Lucky’s Lake Swim / Lake Cane “Enter the Food Chain”

Lucky’s Lake Swim / Lake Cane  “Enter the Food Chain”

If you live in the central Florida area (Orlando) you probably know about Lucky’s Lake Swim.  It’s a great place to go and practice your open water swimming.   If you do not know about the swim the video below is a GREAT summary of what Lucky’s Lake Swim is all about.  It’s about swimming, training, learning, friendship and fun.

Lucky is a great and generous man.  He opens up his house everyday (but Sunday) for swimmers (usually 50 to 150) to swim the lake behind his house in Orlando, FL.  He provides swag to those swimmers who reach milestones.  He provides you with bathrooms and showers to use.  He even lets you sign the wall of his huge and extremely pretty house.  And he does this all for FREE.  He also helps out the Lake Cane Restoration Society and the local YMCA.  AND he also trains special needs kids to swim!

The swim is help on Lake Cane and is about 1000m long.  Swimmers swim at their own risk.  This is an open water swim with wild creatures, no lifeguards and the lake is very deep.  It’s “entering the food” chain. You can swim as many times as you like but the average is 1 to 4 laps. 

Several records have been set on this lake. The longest open water lake swim (82 Kilometers swimming non-stop for nearly 30 hours) and 50 swimmers did a 100K relay that lasted nearly two days of swimming, setting an RHR world record.(

Brud, the oldest swimmer to ever swim the lake was a 92 year old man. I was there the day he completed this.  He looked great and he looked like he could do even more laps when he was done.  He was one of about six swimmers over the age of 70 who swam the lake that day.

Even a dog named Digger swims the WHOLE distance.  Digger is my arch enemy.  He and I are both neck to neck on the total number of crossings.  I want to be on the 100K club before Digger.  Digger currently has around 28 crossings (28000m).  BTW Diggers swims faster than most of the swimmers.

Lucky also has a great and unusual sense of humor.  Review the FAQ section to see a sampling of his humor (  He walks around in a Speedo, an Australian hat and a large cane with snakes on it.  He has placed statues of alligators at the beach entrance.  He also created a video about the Lake Cane piranhas (see video above).

Lucky also holds the Guinness World Record for the Largest Yo-Yo Collection (  His photo was in the Gold 50th anniversary Guinness book.  He even has a Wikipedia page about him (

If you are ever in the Orlando area I would highly suggest coming out to the lake to swim it at least once.  It is a great place to train and a great experience. 

Lucky is a great guy and I try to thank him every time I am out on the lake.  Thank you Lucky!

BTW If you are interested I swim at Lucky's lake every Saturday and usually do 2-3 laps.  Currently, I have completed around 29 crossing and am still neck and neck with Digger the dog.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Gym Update

My gym workouts have been going pretty good.  I’ve lost 20lbs in about two months.  This was not something I was trying to do it just happened.    My inter-tube is slowly disappearing.  I may be able to get one of those college frat guy stomachs if I hit my abs more in the next couple of months.  My arms and legs got ignored this week (arms because of lack of time and legs because I was starting my run training).

I’ve been doing supersets at lunch to try to get all my routines in during the week.  So far it is going well but it’s kicking my butt. You really have to stay focused and keep moving to accomplish all the supersets.

PS: Below is a picture of my progress.   What do you think?  I think I need to work on my arms some more to get them more cut. :-)

9/5/10 - 9/12/10 Training

9/12 Sun      39m BC ride with the Freewheelers
9/13 Mon     1hr Chest and Core (super sets)
9/14 Tue      1hr Back and Abs(super sets)
9/15 Wed    Lunch: 1hr intervals on the treadmill
                    After work: 1hr Cycling class at the gym followed by a 2 mile treadmill brick
9/16 Thu      Off
9/17 Fri       2000m Swim
9/18 Sat      9 Mile Run

This week marked my second week back into running.  The miles were rusty and slow.  I will definitely need to put some more miles on these legs to get them back into shape.  

My cycling yesterday was some of my best.  I rode with a B group and finished with the top cyclist of the group.  I hung with him and felt strong.  He was a stronger rider but I was able to hang with him and earn some respect points.  The average pace was 18mph but most of the paces when I looked down were about 20 mph.  The ride was all flatland and at one point we were holding a 24mph pace.

On Friday I went into GNC to get some protein.  After losing 20lbs in two months I really need to increase my protein intake.  I have been avoiding my protein because the last stuff I bought was horrible.  My normal source of protein is either out of business or should be because they never return emails or phone calls.  I bought some Optimal Nutrition Gold Standard Whey and my first impressions are good.   I will need to review this protein in a later blog.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Clif Bar Triathlon Commercial

You may have already seen this but if not its pretty funny.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Homemade Energy Gels / Gu

For endurance athletes energy gels have become a necessary evil.  Their consistencies are horrible.  For some people the first time they consume one they become nauseous.   For many people they can cause some serious stomach issues.  Sometimes the ingredients are questionable. And over the many months of training they can become very expense.  Because of these reasons I started to surf the internet to find out how to make homemade energy gels.

Most gels consist of only a few, easily obtainable ingredients.  They all have some type of a carbohydrate (sugars), salt, vitamins (potassium, C, E, etc) and others (flavorings, caffeine, protein, amino acids, etc)

(All these can be easily purchased online, at your local grocery store, health food store or beer supply store)

This can found on the internet or your local beer supply store.  This is the sugar that most commercially available gels use (Hammer, Carb-Boom, Power Gel, and Gu).  It is easily digestible, not overly sweet and a fast energy source.  It is commonly used in sodas and candies.  This usually comes in the form of a powder that must be hydrated.

Commonly known as a fruit sugar.  This is a slow digesting sugar and has low GI index. 

This can be found just about anywhere for cheap.  One added benefit of this sugar is that it naturally contains vitamins and minerals. Consuming local honeys may even be beneficial to individuals with a pollen allergy.  It is also an antiseptic and antibacterial. Honey contains many natural sugars (fructose, glucose, sucrose, maltose).  Stinger Gels use honey as one of the carb sources.  I make homemade mead (honey wine) so I have a TON of this in the house.

Brown Rice Syrup
This syrup contains maltose, glucose, and maltotriose.  It is also quickly digested.  This is the carb source used in Cliff Shot Energy Gels.

Agave Nectar
This is the sugar they use to make tequila. :-)   This is the sugar used in Chocolate #9 Gels.  It has a light syrupy consistency and is slightly sweet.

Blackstrap Molasses
This is what is used to make rum. :-)  This sugar is used a lot in southern cooking and is an acquired taste.  But it is cheap and has naturally occurring vitamins and minerals. 

Other Ingredients

Salt – I would use all natural sea salt or use some commercial electrolyte pills you already probably purchased.  Personally I like Salt Stick.

Vitamins – Take your pick.  This is usually vitamin C (Citric Acid), vitamin E, potassium, etc

Amino Acids – You can get these from anywhere but they are not necessary.  GU and Hammer sometimes adds them to their gels.

Flavorings – Experiment with your favorites (juices, extracts, purees, artificial flavorings, etc)

Caffeine – Coffee, tea, No-Doze, etc

Pectin - This is a thickening agent (think Jell-O).  You can get this in the supermarket.

The How To:

The great part about making homemade gels is that you can customize and experiment with ingredients and flavors.  This experimentation is part of the fun.  You can also save a ton of cash.  You can make gels for about 1/5th the price.  Trying to make homemade energy gels is definitely on my list of todos.

I found several great websites that describe the details, recipes and science behind energy gels.  Much of the information above is a summary of their details.  I would recommend reading these links.
Has a great article about how to make a simple, all natural, cheap and effective energy gel.  It basically uses only honey, blackstrap molasses and salt.  These ingredients should store for months with no issues and since it comes from honey and molasses it contains all the natural vitamins and minerals you need. The second page tells you how to make a protein version.  I am not sure how good it would taste though.

Note: the link above has two pages.  You can access the second page by clicking the hyper link at the bottom of the page. 

Summit Post
This website has a great break down of everything you need to know.  It describes the science behind gels, their ingredients, packaging and price breakdown, etc.  Great read.

Note the link above has three pages.  You can access the other pages by clicking the hyper link at the bottom of the page. 

Jibbering has some great sounding recipes.  He also tells you what went wrong with some of the recipes he has tried.  Another great read.

Life Is An Ultramarathon has a great gel breakdown which include each gels main carbohydrate, cost sweetness, etc.

9/5/10 - 9/12/10 Training

9/5 Sun       Off
9/6 Mon      3000m Swim
9/7 Tue       1hr Chest and  Biceps (super sets)
9/8 Wed     1hr Back and  Triceps (super sets)
9/9 Thu       Off
9/10 Fri       Off
9/11 Sat      2000m Lucky's Lake Swim
                   followed by a 10 mile run
9/12 Sun     39 mile Bike BC Ride with the Freewheelers


Saturday was my first official day back into running.  Back to the Cady Way torture sessions.  It was about 95 degrees when I was running.  Not a good time to run but I wanted to get in some miles and finish a brick.  It was slow and hot.  Hopefully the heat goes away soon so running will be more enjoyable. 

BTW why do I look 8 in that picture?

Friday, September 10, 2010

Homemade Granola Bars - Alton Brown Good Eats

I can not stand store bought granola bars. They are usually too sweet and/or loaded with stuff I produced in my college chemistry classes. You know it's bad when I read some of the ingredients and remember learning how to draw their organic structure in my O-chemistry class.

One of the ingredients found in commercial granola bars is Isoamyl acetate.  This is used in banana flavored products, as a bee attractant and was used in the aircraft industry as a wood stiffer and for wind proofing fabric (Wikipedia).  Now that sounds tasty.  I made this stuff in organic chemistry and I smelled like bananas for weeks.

Quaker Instant Oatmeal Peaches & Cream is no better. There is not a single piece of peach in the whole box.  Those are apples pieces you are eating and they are treated with sodium sulfite. This chemical is used in the food industry as a preservative and to prevent discoloring of fruit.  It is also used at water treatment plants, in the photo industry to develop photos, in the textile industry as a bleaching, desulfurizing and dechlorinating agent, for leather tanning and in the purification of TNT (Wikipedia).

A few weeks back I took a shot at making some granola bars using a recipe I found in the July 2010 edition of the 220 Triathlon magazine. They tasted great but did not hold together enough to make bars so I just crumbled them up and ate it like loose granola.  But I still want something I can eat while cycling.

Earlier this week I was watching Alton Brown's Good Eats on the Food Network. This is one of only two shows I ever watch on TV. I love this show. On this episode of Good Eats Mr Brown was demonstrating how to make granola bars, energy bars and protein bars. After watching the show I figured I was armed with enough knowledge to try making some more granola bars.

The base for my recipe can be found here. For the dried fruit I used dried pineapples, dried bananas and finely dried coconut. I also used shelled sunflower seeds instead of whole.  Who the heck eats the shells on sunflower seeds?!  Strange?!?  Although my step sister use to eat cherries pits and all. 

They came out tasting great. There are a few items I would do differently next time.
  • I think I would toast the wheat germ by itself. It toasts MUCH quicker than everything else and burns much easier. 
  • I would also make sure to wait much longer before trying to de-pan the bar. If they are not COMPLETELY cooled they will fall appart when you de-pan and cut the bars. 
  • I would also used lubed parchment paper on the bottom of the pan to make removal from the pan much easier.

Overall I am happy with these and I will make them again with various fruit and nut variations.

UPDATED 11/10/2010 Homemade Granola Bars (The Crazy World of a Running Mom)
UPDATED 10/19/2010: These look even better. Thick, Chewy Granola Bars (From: Smitten Kitchen)
UPDATED 9/23/2010: These look even better. Homemade Cherry Energy Bars (From: I TRI To Be Me)

If you are interested here are the approximate numbers: 

Number of Servings: 
  • 16 (2-inch) squares

Per Serving:
  • Calories: 193 
  • Carbohydrates: 30.52g 
  • Protein: 4.5g 
  • Fat: 6.8g 
  • Fiber: 3.66g 
  • Sodium: 61.28mg

Thursday, September 9, 2010

I need more followers. I TRIPLE-dog-dare ya!

My Friends: Are you kidding? Follow that stupid blog? That's dumb!
Chris Rock: That's 'cause you know it'll get addicting and you will read it at work!
My Friends: You're full of it!
Chris Rock: Oh yeah?
My Friends: Yeah!
Chris Rock: Well I double-DOG-dare ya!
Kevin J as Adult: [narrating] NOW it was serious. A double-dog-dare. What 
else was there but a "triple dare you"? And then, the coup de grace of all dares, the sinister triple-dog-dare.
Chris Rock: I TRIPLE-dog-dare ya!
Kevin J as Adult: [narrating] Chris Rock created a slight breach of etiquette by skipping the triple dare and going right for the throat!

Yippee!! My First Blog Follower!!

Yippee!! Time to party like it's 1999!! I finally received my first follower. This must be my lucky day.  I'm betting the follower thought she was at Steve in a Speedo's?! blog and accidentally hit follow. :-)  Hey, an accidental follower is still a follower.  Thank you stranger for following my blog.  Now maybe my family and friends will accidentally hit follow. :-)

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

8ft Bull Shark found near Triathlon site

 My degree is in freshwater biology and I have seen some strange things show up in freshwater. This has included many saltwater creatures (especially in the St Johns Rivers).  I have heard of small sharks coming inland into the St Johns Rivers but I have never actually caught one.  "Overall, elasmobranchs [sharks] don't venture into freshwater. Some species do occasionally find their way up into the river, bull and tiger sharks among them, but they're casual visitors -- snowbirds -- not residents. (The River Return). Sharks in freshwater are not too surprising to me.  If its connected to the sea in any way creatures will find a way to swim up it, spawn, eat and chase triathletes.   (Shark image by © Shark Info / Doug Perrine)

Foot Shark Caught in Potomac River (NBC Washington)
Blog from DC Rainmaker (Nation’s Tri Athletes: Just ignore the 8’ Bull Sharks…)

Apparently this also happens in the Potomac River.  This happens to be pretty close to the upcoming DC triathlon event (Nation's Triathlon).   This is not the first time sharks have been caught in the Potomac River.  So MD News reports there have been nurse sharks, dusky sharks and bull sharks over the past several years (Shark presence in So. Md. reported Big fish part of local wildlife (So MD News))  One shark caught was over 10ft and weighed over 400lbs.

But do not worry there has never been a reported shark attack in the Potomac. Shark attacks are actually really rare (Shark Attack Statistics).  Only about 40 -50 annually in the US.

As triathletes we have far more worse things to worry about than sharks.  Lets take swimming for example.  There are over 3400 drownings in the US annually (CDC.Gov).  That's over 9 drownings a day in the US.  Cycling is far worse.  There were over 716 bike related deaths in 2008 and 52,000 bicyclists were injured in traffic in 2007 ( (Photo credit: Saturday Night Live)

 Here is what I found about running:
"I also stumbled on a study by the NHTSA’s National Center for Statistics and Analysis on pedestrian injuries and fatalities from being hit by cars. The data was kind of old, but back in 2001, a pedestrian was injured every 7 minutes in the United States by a car. And a pedestrian was killed every 108 minutes. That kind of sucks. However, the bright side of the data (if it can be called that) is that almost 40% of all pedestrians killed had some alcohol in their blood stream, almost 2/3rds were male, and about half of them were killed on Friday, Saturday or Sunday at night. Translation: drinking and walking around at night, so probably not runners." (Joe English Running Advice and News)

And do not get me started about living in FL with the deadly amoeba (Naegleria fowleri)  According the the CDC the amoeba has only killed 23 people between 1995 and 2004 in all the United States.  I think you have far more things to worry about than the amoeba. (Image credit: CDC/ Dr. Govinda S. Visvesvara).

I'm off to go watch Jaws and Shark Week on Discovery. Have fun on your swim this weekend.