Update (Jan. 2017): It’s been a long time since I last updated this page, and it’s about time I revisited just what gear I use in my numerous triathlons and ultra-endurance events. Some things have changed – and some things haven’t changed since 2009!
In May, 2014, thanks to my relationship with the Timex Factory Team, I was able to acquire a new wetsuit which will hopefully float me through my triathlons in the future. It was the BlueSeventy Helix:
Going from the Desoto the BlueSeventy is a very different experience, but the more flexible arms in the BlueSeventy will be greatly appreciated!
At the end of 2009, I had signed up for the Vineman Full Triathlon but didn’t even own a bike. So, I started perusing bikes with the following criteria: It should be light, fast, a tri-bike (with aerobars), not need “upgrading” for an Ironman triathlon, and it had to include a fitting. Although Trek is very popular in California, after much reading of slowtwitch.com, I settled on the 2010 Cervelo P2 carbon Tri-bike.
Until 2016, I was still riding the same stock 2010 p2 Cervelo with only minor updates: I changed the brake pads, changed the tires to Continental Grand Prix 4000S, and added a Speedfil Aero water bottle. The bike is beginning to show a few dings, but we’ve been through a lot together, and despite some crashes and scratches, was going extremely strong. But my birthday came along, and I decided to cannibalize my cervelo and upgrade my frame to:
A 2014 Trek Speed Concept. The wheels, shifters, seat, cassette, and derailleur came from the Cervelo. The crankset was upgraded to a Shimano 6700 170mm crank with new bottem bracket and includes a bontrager aft storage (no more bottles behind the butt!) and a BTA (between the arms) bottle holder. I haven’t decided if I’ll transfer the speedfil.
Probably the biggest change from 2009 is in my equipment for the run. There was nothing wrong with what I started with in 2009, but as my running changed and advanced, so did my equipment.
In 2009, I started with the Brooks Adrenaline GTS 11 stability shoes since I tended to overpronate. There is nothing wrong with this shoe, but after reading “Chi Running” and changing my stride from a heel-strike to a mid-foot strike style, I’m now running on Brooks PureCadence 2’s. I don’t think the upgrade from the Purecadence (original) to the
PC 2’s was an upgrade – I’m hoping the next generation brings back much of the original.
For trailrunning I wear the Brooks PureGrit (part of the “Pure Project” series of shoes). I would love to wear the Salomon series of shoes, but unfortunately they don’t make any shoes in a “B” width… And their women’s shoes only go up to a size 11 (I’m a size 12 in women’s, or 10.5 in mens).
But after suffering a bad case of Hell Spur and Plantar Fascitis (sp?), I switched shoes again in 2014 to Pearl Izumi:
The new E-Motion M2 Women’s shoe, which has a heel-to-toe drop a bit different than previous shoes and a smaller toebox than PureCadence have been my shoes for the 2014 season. I even grabbed a pair of the trail shoes, which work so much better than the PureGrits (they don’t keep sand out like the PureGrits, but they are far more grippy on the trail):
I then switched to the Hoka One One Clifton’s for 2015:
The problem with the Hoka One One shoes was they didn’t have the right width with for my narrow feet. So, oddly enough, in 2017 I’ve gone back to the PureCadence… and maybe even to my very first shoe, the Brooks Adrenaline.
In 2010 I purchased the Nathan Endurance Race Vest, based on the popular HPL-20 series. It carried me through many ultramarathons, including the prestigious Comrades Marathon in 2011 and 2012. However, the vest did have some drawbacks for me personally. For one, I’m terrible at keeping things clean, and after a period of time, the water pouch got slimy, and the nipple got gross. Sure, I could replace the water pouch, but I also learned that, during an ultramarathon, refilling this water takes a long, long time (you have to remove the pack from your back, unzip, open, fill, rezip, put the pack back on). Those minutes add up.
So, in 2013 I purchased a water pack from UltraAspire, a company started by an ultrarunner. They produce a lot of different packs, but the Kinetic was my favorite since it uses a water-bottle system. It should provide enough water for most races. When I started doing more hiking and/or stage races, I be invested in the UltraAspire Fastpack.
However, for races and triathlons, I found the vest was a bit much. Just prior to Ironman 70.3 St. George, at the expo, I bought the UltrAspire Electron belt with the Fusion Water bottles accessory, which has worked exceptionally well for road races and short races (but not trail races) as long as the aid stations are plentiful:
In fact, my wife says it’s the only belt that doesn’t look horrible on me (in other words, it doesn’t make me look fatter).
I completed my first Ironman-length triathlon without anything more complicated than a Timex watch. Sure, it was one of those that had the word “Ironman” on it, but all it did was keep time and have a chrono. I had to do all the time-cutoff math and pacing calculations in my head. Afterward, I got this:
For my first triathlon watch, it was an amazing computer. In fact, to this day my wife uses this on her runs as we haven’t found any other device (even the new Timex RunTrainer 2.0) that does what this little device does so well. Also, when I upgraded to my current watch…
… my wife continues to use the original 310xt for all her workouts. The Garmin 910xt, I purchased in mid-2012. It’s a fantastic watch and continues to well for many to this day. But as time went on, I upgraded to:
The Fenix 5. Not wearing a strap has proven to be great.
I believe if you eat the perfect diet, you don’t need vitamins.
I don’t eat the perfect diet: Far from it. As a pilot, there is little the is regular in my diet, and finding good nutritious food at airports is almost impossible. Consequently, I use 1st Endurance Multi-V for my vitamins. I also supplement that with fish/flax seed oil.