Its Day Zero of my contest prep. Vacations are over, my bike trek across Burma is over, and I am ready to focus on my next two HUGE goals for 2015:
- Half Ironman Triathlon
- Men’s Physique Contest
I am about 4 months out from my men’s physique contest date now, and about the same for the Half Ironman. By the way, if you want to show up and cheer me on I will need all the support I can get. I know this seems really odd to people but I am very shy and getting up there on stage is going to be very, very difficult for me. I hate public speaking and I hate getting up on a stage of any kind. When I film videos, its completely different, its just me and the camera in the privacy of my studio. Anyway, please come and cheer me on. I will be having a private hanger party for S4H members too, here are the details.
Men’s Physique Contest Prep
So what is my contest prep? Well, you know I never bulk and my bodyfat stays pretty even all year long. Below is a picture I took today at day zero. My weight is 222 pounds at 10.5% bodyfat. I could get on stage like this but I would look pretty stupid for a number of reasons. First, as silly as this sounds I need posing practice. Even though men’s physique is just quarter turns and there is no posing routine, its still important that I have instruction in this regard. Secondly, I need to lower my bodyfat. Its going to be tricky for me for a number of reasons. First, the Half Ironman is first and for that I dont want to be too lean or I will sink like a rock even with a wetsuit. So after the triathlon, I will have to do a faster cut than I would like. Either that or do the triathlon leaner than would be optimal. The other issue is that I am old and the older you get the more vascular you get. If I drop my bodyfat too much, the vascularity will not be attractive so its going to be a balancing act to optimize vascularity and bodyfat. The other issue is that I have a long face and the older you get, the more you lose fat in your face. When I have lowered my bodyfat in the past, I have always stopped because I didnt like how gaunt my face looked. To have my physique look optimal, my face will suffer – again, a balancing act.
Half Ironman Triathlon Prep
So you know me, I’m all about cardio. I love doing cardio all four seasons and there is no “off season” for me when it comes to cardio. Having said that, preparing for a Half Ironman requires upping the ante in training. My cycling conditioning is constant year round, the things I let slide are running and swimming. Running is hard on the joints when you are heavy so in the off season I limit my running to 5k runs every other week or so. It takes me 3 months to ramp up my mileage so that my body can handle the half marathon. For me, its not about running speed, its just about being able to DO it at all :)
Running and biking is very easy for me since I can leave from my doorstep and have great route options – swimming is another story and I dont like the time overhead required to drive to a pool so I only swim as preparation for triathlons. Last year I was a very bad boy, before the Half Ironman, I literally only did two swims in the preceding 8 months before the race and those were 2 weeks before the race. This year I am going to be better prepared so I did my first swim today.
I hate sharing a lane so I tend to swim in the wee hours of the morning. Todays swim started at 5:30am and it was AWESOME! I wanted to limit myself to 15 minutes on the first swim but it felt SO good that I did 30 minutes of freestyle. The first laps were agonizing as my abs were really sore from my ab workout two days ago. You dont realize how much swimming power comes from your core until your abs hurt so much that you have to swim like a stiff plank. After 15 minutes my core finally loosened up so I could connect my kicks and strokes with a strong core twist … so I just HAD to keep swimming. Then the other two people left the pool. There is nothing like having a whole pool to yourself, I just love the smooth, quiet water. Anyway, I swam for 30 minutes and had a great first swim.
- Yes, my speedo is bright pink. I hate boring as you might have gathered from my hat collection and I feel the same about swim suits. I have every bright, neon colored speedo made – EVERY.
- Yes, I swim with a mask rather than goggles. I know its not efficient. I know it makes breathing less optimal. I use a mask for many reasons. First, no idea why but I have never been able to get goggles to fit me and be leak proof and I have tried the very expensive adjustable ones. I basically gave up. The other reason is that sometimes triathlons are in gross water that I would just as soon keep out of my nose and eyes. The third reason is that I dont always trust public pools to have sufficient chlorine and I figure the fewer mucous membranes exposed, the lower the chance of catching unpleasant things.
- Yes, the mask is on my forehead. For anyone who is a scuba diver and has done shore dives you know that is a big no-no. Upon entering the water, even small waves can knock the mask off your head and then you are in big trouble. Anyway, even though its been 20 years since I dove in the beautiful otter frequented kelp beds of the California coast, the training still sticks. Even in an indoor pool, it feels wrong.
- Many times a week, well meaning people tell me that I am crooked and perhaps should go to a doctor. Its called scoliosis and I have had it since I was a teenager. No, surgery is called for – I have seen doctors and its just something I have to live with. Yes, I have written about it – google “Scooby scoliosis” or read about it here in my asymmetry page. In my upcoming men’s physique contest, a big part of my posing work will be to hide the scoliosis.
- Yes, the “1961” in “Scooby1961” refers to my birth year. As of today, I am 54 years old. Not sure the categories in the men’s physique yet. If there is no 50+ category then I will be in the 40+ category.
- No, I dont believe in bulking. I hate cutting and find it easier to keep a relatively low bodyfat all year long
If you want this spreadsheet to use, see my accurate weight charting page.