The Pendulum

Golden Back to Basics CX RaceI suspect most age grouper endurance athletes go through a pendulum like experience with their training and racing. In the past twelve months I’ve experienced the largest pendulum swing yet.

A little over a year ago, for the first time ever, I ran 50 kilometers.  It was one of those bucket list endurance things on my list. Mostly what made it possible was that for the 7 months prior to that day I was living on my own 2,000 miles away from my family while we were in the process of relocating to Colorado. It gave me plenty of time to train as I tried to keep busy during lots of lonely weekends.

After many months of sacrifice being away, my family we were finally reunited full time this June. This has obviously been great for our family as we’ve spent some wonderful time together over the summer and fall. Lots of hiking, biking and just hanging out at the house (with our new addition, Gus)!

What has not happened is any kind of regular training and racing since completing my first ultra run (except for a half marathon and my first cyclocross race). My CTL is taking a nose dive while my TSB is shooting through the roof (for my non TrainingPeaks readers this means my fitness is dropping not good!).

Performance management chart from 9-11 thru 10-12

Now that the back to school routine is in a good groove it’s time to get back on track. Even though it may mean a little less time with the family, both my wife and son agree that I’m a much better person to be around when I’m training and racing. Not to mention the forced efficiency in time management helps me to actually get more done with less time. This might sound weird but I think my endurance sports friends would agree with me.

One of the biggest drivers is that I got into endurance sports primarily because of my son. At almost 250 pounds 15 years ago, learning of a son who was on the way sparked the drive to get in shape. Then after getting hooked on triathlon, being a good role model for my son on living an active lifestyle was the driver that led to several marathons, half-ironmans and (almost two) Ironmans.

So this off-season actually marks the beginning of my planning for next season….stay tuned, the off-season is over!

How Twitter Saved Me 80 Dollars

Photo Credit - Stevewilliamsphotos
Photo Credit - Stevewilliamsphotos

I’m in the process of training for Ironman Lake Placid. It’s my 2nd time doing the race and prior to my first race I did a training weekend to prepare. It was incredibly helpful last time, so I decided to do it again for this year’s race.

I made reservations at a reasonably priced hotel for $80/night and felt pretty good about it. Over the past several months I’ve been interacting through Twitter with individuals and business from Lake Placid as I tweeted about my race preparations.  More recently I saw some interesting posts from the High Peaks Resort and decided to follow them.  Their marketing guy, Bill, is pretty sharp and is using a great example of how a business can increase revenue using Twitter and other social media.

They are having a spring special called Elevate Your Rate. Here is the explanation from their website:

To celebrate Spring, the region and the High Peaks for 46 straight days beginning on April 22nd we will be “elevating” a special rate for 46 minutes each day based on the elevation of one of the 46 High Peaks. For example a rate based on the 4867 foot elevation of Whiteface Mountain will be $48.67.

How will you know which 46 minutes these rates will be available? Some time between 8am and 8pm EST each day we will alert friends, fans and followers through our Twitter Profile and Facebook Page. After the update is posted the “elevated” rate of the day will become available for 46 minutes! It used to be that you’d have to actually climb all 46 of the High Peaks to be considered a true 46’er; well now there’s another way to reach the top.

 So, I set my Twitter account to follow the High Peaks Resort via SMS.  Sure enough, that morning I got the text that the Elevate Your Rate was available and booked my room for $40/night, half of what my other reservation was going to be for a total savings of $80.  Thanks Bill.

What other examples have you seen Twitter make a real impact to the bottom line?