Wednesday, September 9, 2009

The Itch

WOW, I can't believe that it's been 2 months since my last blog post! Where has the time gone? I promise that I'll get better about posting updates. I hope I didn't lose too many followers...

I have my first Triathlon since May this coming weekend. The Patriot's Half Iron. I missed two Tri's this summer from being sick. However, Kinetic and Patriot's have always been my two "A" races of the year. This course is fast and I'm hoping for a fast time. I went 5:27 at Kinetic, so if I have a good race, there's no reason that I can't get under 5:15. Run, Run, Run. It's going to be all about the run for me on Saturday. I've worked a ton on my running since last December and I'll push myself. No Excuses.

I do have that taper "itch" right now. I wanted to swim this morning, but Coach K said that I was lucky that I didn't show up (she's having me take today and tomorrow off). Guess she knows what she's doing. ; ) It's been a long summer and I feel like a prized fighter right now. Little aches and pains, particularly my left foot has been bothering me for a few weeks, from a summer full of training. It'll all pay off with that 5:15 I'm gunning for.

Time for bed, as Coach K orders more sleep for me.

I'm ready to race again!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

All Clear!!

I finally got the all clear from both Dr. Stadler's yesterday afternoon! Lungs sounded good and the little shortness of breath and coughing I have left over is more than likely due to the lost aerobic capacity over the last two weeks. Carlton's advice - "You need some hard interval training"!! So now I'm back to training full steam, but just need to ensure I get good rest.

Once Coach K got wind of that, I was back in Guppies at 6am this morning and I'm now getting ready to head to Lake Gaston for the next 3 days for her Tri clinic. It was kinda last minute, but I'm excited about going. We'll be doing lots of open water swimming and a couple long bikes.

Guppies went surprisingly well this morning. It definitely hurt a bit on some of the breathing drills, but I know that it will until I get back to where I was. Coach K even mentioned that I should take a few weeks off more often, as my stroke looked much longer than it has in a while! Can't wait to get a run in later this afternoon!

Friday, July 3, 2009

Day 14

It's been 14 days since I've been sick now. I'm feeling better, but anytime I do a little more playing or moving around too much, I can feel my lung tighten up. Then I start coughing.

I got a 30 minute ride on a stationary trainer Thursday, which felt good. I kept my heart rate close to 130, which is where Dr. Stadler recommended. The one time I felt a little good and inched up just a tad on the level, my lung started to tighten up and I had to cough pretty bad. I noticed that my heart rate had only gotten to like 135-137. Gotta take it SLOW and EASY, Deal!! A nice hot shower helped, followed by my inhaler.

Had my follow-up with Dr. Stadler that afternoon and she is still really concerned about the sound of my lung. She is testing it by having me take a deep breath in and blow out hard and fast while she listens. The good news is that I was able to do that 3 times without a ton of wheezing and coughing. On Monday, I could not do it once. The next step is to have her listen to my lung again on Tuesday and possibly schedule a CAT scan to check for fluid. If there is a large pocket of fluid in there, they'll have to go in with a needle and drain it! Yikes!! She scheduled another follow-up for Tuesday with her husband Carlton as he may be the one to drain me.

Here's hoping some weekend rest and meds will keep me away from any long needle plunged deep into my lung...

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Bryan "One Lung" Deal

Sick update for my Blog followers:

Went to see my primary care Dr. on Monday, Dr. Stadler. She came in and after listening to my lungs made the statement "You know Bryan, I just wasn't buying the whole pneumonia being diagnosed at Patient First thing", "But I have to say, you have the worst sounding lungs I've heard in years!" Great news to hear from your Dr.! ; ) She is great and we began to discuss when I could get back to training. I can resume strength training (light and very low intensity) as of today and I can get a couple easy bike rides (indoors and again real easy) this week. She, Coach K, and everyone else, don't want me to push too hard too fast since this could get pretty serious if we don't get rid of it. No worries, I just need to check myself and make sure I'm easing into things over the next week or two.

She added a few more medications to my medicine cabinet. Here's a nice list of the meds I currently have to take. I'm like a walking pharmacy!

In the morning:

  • Normal Juice Plus vitamin fruit supplement
  • 2 Prednisone (oral steroid)
  • 1 Levaquin (antibiotic)
  • 2 Mucinex (expectorant)
  • Albuteral inhaler as needed throughout the day

In the evening:

  • Normal Juice Plus vitamin vegetable supplement
  • 1 Zyrtec (normal seasonal allergy med)
  • Rhinocort (normal seasonal allergy med)
  • 2 Mucinex
  • 1 shot of Advair before bed (inhaler)
I did get a nice strength training workout in today. Not nearly as heavy and intense as I'm usually in the weightroom, but a solid workout nonetheless.

Got a followup with Dr. Stadler on Thursday so we'll see how I'm doing and I'll keep the updates coming.

Sunday, June 28, 2009


As I sit here typing this, my fellow triathletes are swimming, biking, and running at the Tavern Tri. I was supposed to be there too. I love that race! I even went to packet pick-up and got my packet just to feel something normal. Man, I really wanted to race today! Got my first DNS (Did Not Start) today, but I gotta put my health first.

Last Saturday afternoon, I was more than an uncomfortable sore from my early morning brick and wasn't sure what was wrong. I chalked it up to being really tired as I wasn't sleeping well. Father's day went great (I got an awesome photography book!), but by the evening I was feeling as if I'd been run over by a truck. I checked my temp and it was at 100.4! Yikes! I never get sick, at least haven't in over 4 years. Went to the Dr. on Monday with a 101 fever and after checking for the flu and strep, both of which were negative, they did some blood work to check my white blood cell count. When that came back not showing a bacterial infection, I was sent home with a "random virus" to take Advil and get more rest.

By Wednesday, I had developed this really annoying, dry cough. Sometimes, I get stuck coughing for what feels like an eternity. Not fun! During one of my coughing fits later that evening, I heard Logan crying really hard. When I could breath, I walked over to him and he gave me a great big hug. He said "Daddy, I didn't think Superman could get sick." Tears just welled up. It dawned on me that he's never seen me sick, ever. I said "Logan, sometimes even Superman gets sick."

By Friday, Nikki had me convinced that there was something else going on. Saturday morning I headed to Patient First. The Dr. listened to my breathing and had me do a breath test. I then had chest x-rays taken. Seems my training is going well as they had to take a top and bottom x-ray as the tech mentioned, "just as I thought, you have large lungs." He could now see the small patch of pneumonia I have in my bottom left lung. One more blood test to ensure it wasn't really bad and off I go with antibiotics and an inhaler.

Yeah, walking pneumonia! Good times. I feel that since I haven't been sick in over 4 years, I better go ahead and make this one count! I'm just glad that after a week they've found the shard of Kryptonite, and I now have something to remove all traces of it. ; )

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

No Excuses

That is what is written on the side of my Gatorade Rain bottles. It's a great saying and one that I implanted into my mind while racing the Kinetic Half Ironman on May 9th.

Nikki and Ansley made the trip up with me for this race. We left Logan at home with his Grandpa as his soccer team was playing his best friends team. We didn't want him to miss the game, being the only time he'd get a chance to play against his good friends this season. As usual, we were late leaving, with me waiting until the last minute to throw everything together. My
Xterra Wetsuits Tribag showed up as we were getting ready to pull out. Money!! Threw it in the X and we were off. Made the usual stop at Chick-Fil-A for my evening pre-race meal and we were on the road. The drive is only about 45 minutes, which put us at Lake Anna for check-in just a few minutes after 7pm. Picked up my race packet and walked around a bit with Nik and Ansley checking everything out.

I booked this place, the
Lake Anna Lodge, that had us envisioning a roach motel. It's about 10 minutes out from the State Park, so we arrived with lots of time to relax. It was a nice place. Very clean and not the dump that we thought. The first thing I did was open up my kick ass tri bag, begin to unpack my two smaller tri bags (i.e. small backpacks), and load up the new bag. This thing is GREAT! I got my wetsuit, both pair of shoes, helmet, and everything else I'd need during the race into it. Ansley was in typical form, couldn't stop talking or moving around in the bed, giving Nik a fit as I was pre-occupied. After pacing around and wasting time I was ready for bed. Gave my girls a goodnight kiss and hit the sheets. As usual, I didn't sleep well. No worries. I had a great nights sleep on Thursday, which two nights before, is the most important.

I wanted to get to transition no later than 6am to ensure that I get everything setup, hit the restroom, get my wetsuit on, and warmup. The alarm goes off about 5:15am so that I could get Nik and Ansley up so they could get ready. As we leave the motel about 6am, I'm stressing. We're the last vehicle left in the lot and I wanted to have already been there. As we get to the Lake, the main parking lot is full and they are directing us to another lot around back. Now, I'm really freaking out, having no idea where they are taking us and how far away it'll be. Turns out we end up right behind transition! MUCH better than at the very back of the main lot! It's 6:15am and after setting up most of my transition space, I head down to get body marked and get my chip. Back to transition to finish setting up my space. I then collect my wetsuit and swim gear and head to the start. It's 6:40am now and I still have to make one last restroom trip and get my wetsuit on. Great! Lots of athletes need one last "business" trip, so I'm forced to wait in line a few minutes. Finished up with 10 minutes left before race start. Donned my wetsuit using the plastic bag over the feet trick, which works awesome, and headed down to the Lake.

Getting into the water for a little warmup got me ready to start. A little chilly, was 68 at the start, but felt great! I was ready to roll.

As the gun went off, we ran into the water and I found myself dolphin diving! Just like Coach K has been teaching us. The first loop of the swim went really well. I ended up finding another athlete that was a very similar pace and we split time swimming in each others draft, literally in the armpit, stroke for stroke. This made for a fast start as we were pushing each other using the draft. I'm staying right on course, cutting the buoys really tight. As I swim up to the beach, we have a short jog and onto lap 2 of the swim. This lap went equally well, and I even found myself breathing every 3rd stroke for a while. Yes Coach K, I was breathing to my non comfortable side. I had an awesome swim! 34:28. Over 5 minutes improvement over my fastest Half time!

The bike proved to be a nice and difficult ride. It was really windy, hilly, and there was a lot of traffic heading to the lake. For most of the ride I was unable to really hit the downhills due to the 15-20 mph headwind. It was a rolling course with only one real long, slightly downhill section, where the wind was at my back and I could really get it. We even passed a group of horses on a bridge that I couldn't tell who was more spooked, the horses or the bikers! Throughout the bike I had Jaime Foxx's song "Blame It" stuck in my head. I know, I know, not the most upbeat song to race to, but proved to keep me amused throughout the ride. I kept making up my own lyrics, singing "Blame it on the wi-wi-wi-wi-wind, blame it on the hi-hi-hi-hi-hills" And to the little girl at the first water bottle handout, please practice handing off a bottle to a biker traveling at roughly 19mph. It's not as easy as just standing there and "hoping" we grab it. Needless to say, that bottle hit the ground and I was almost out of water. Luckily, there was another stop not too far away. The bad thing about the bike was it's 2 loops outside the park, so there were very few spectators out to cheer us on. Didn't get to see my girls until I was back to T2. Nutrition was on point and I wasn't feeling hungry or drained. 2:57:40. I was a couple minutes off my fastest bike split, but I felt pretty good about hitting the run

As I was approaching T2, I got concerned that my legs were going to buckle as soon as I got off the bike at the dismount line and I was gonna fall flat on my face in front of everyone! The line was on a decline, so I had to be careful that I didn't fly right on by! I had been pushing hard through the wind and hills. I started slowing down, unclipped my right foot and shook the leg out a bit. Around the back of the saddle it swung, right behind my left foot, which caused the left foot to unclip in a fluid motion. As both feet hit the pavement, there was no fall. Just an anxious excitement to begin the run. Today, I was gonna push myself HARD on the run.

My last 3 Half Iron's have all finished up with just over a 2 hour 13.1 mile run. I was determined to push myself past the uncomfortable point that I usually end up walking too much. I was also nailing my nutrition, salt tabs every 30 minutes and Gu's every 45. No GI issues this time around. I was running at a really good clip and only walked a couple of times to get fuel in and kept the walks very short. It was getting really hot out there and that was just fueling me as I love the heat. The run course was 3 laps and very nicely laid out. I got to see Nikki and Ansley on every lap and they proved to be great motivation for the tortuous hill climbing out of the lake area to start each lap. I was very pleased with my pace and feel like I can improve on it before the Patriot's Half this fall. I finished with a PR in the half marathon distance, 1:51:27!! 8:30 min/mile pace, which I know I can improve on.

A Half Ironman PR of 24 minutes!! 5:27:18!!

About a week before this race I mentioned that I had a lofty goal for this race, but didn't mention to anyone what it was. I wanted to break 5:30. Mission accomplished. I can't wait to see what I can push myself too this year!

So I'm so excited about my race and can't wait to check the results. Of course, Five Guys was calling my name and I wolfed down a Little Bacon Cheeseburger and Small Cajun Fry with a Sprite! I then go to look up my time. Wait, my name wasn't on the results! WTF! I busted my ass out there and I wasn't even on the results. I start looking through the finish times, as kept my splits on my watch, and found out that they had me under the wrong number. I was listed as ALVARO DE LA CUEVA. After a couple days, I was able to work with Set Up Events and get my name back in there. Glad to be Bryan Deal again!!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Brandon and Marisa's Wedding

My brother got married in Ohio over the weekend. Long 8 hour drive, but we had a wonderful weekend up there. Beautiful ceremony! Enjoy the pics!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Working on it

So, I AM working on my race report, but just can't get it finished. Both Logan and Ansley have swim lessons this week. Logan at Burkwood, here in Mechanicsville, and Ansley on Broad Street. So Nik and I are having to split up to get them to where they need to be. Well, haven't had much evening time to get it written. Alas, LOST is on tonight, so it won't get done now.

Time to get LOST...

Saturday, May 2, 2009

One week...

For the last three weeks, I've been cheering on friends and watching others get their Tri on. A week from Saturday, my Tri season gets started. I can't wait. I have no idea what to expect from my first race, but I know that I'm going to be more mentally prepared this year. I've made a pact with myself not to wuss out on the run, which in hindsight, I have a tendency to do. It hurts, I know this. I HAVE to move past that. My training runs have been solid. Ran for an hour today at about 7:10 pace, almost 8 1/2 miles, and it felt good, REAL good. I've got a number in my head that I want to hit, but it'll stay in my head for a little longer.

Ansley had a much better soccer game today. Getting involved and actually looking like she was playing! Logan, of course, did awesome! I'll have to get some pics up soon.

I know I take a lot of time away from them during the week, but Nik and the kids' support means the world to me!

Monday, April 20, 2009

Another overdue blog post...

Time just seems to be slipping by so fast that I keep dropping the ball on this blog. Maybe I'm just spending too much time playing Mafia Wars! But I digress.

Training is going really well. I continue to improve in the water and all the hard work I put into my running over the winter is paying off. Got my first outdoor bike ride in this past Saturday and looking forward to the RABA group ride Tuesday evening. I'm really excited to get this Tri season started. May 9th at Lake Anna, the Kinetic Half Ironman. I want to do really well and have been really focusing on this race. Got a couple more weeks to fine tune and dial everything in. I feel ready, so we'll see.

Logan and Ansley are doing very well. Both are playing soccer. Ansley is warming up to it and Logan LOVES playing. He's beginning to really get the hang of it and playing well. Although he loves scoring goals, he seems to have a knack for defense. He's understanding defense and not playing the ball, but rather the position. Actually taking angles that get between the goal and the other team, then taking the ball away. This past Sunday, we got him signed up for swim team at Burkwood. The Burkwood Pirates, arrgh! Let me tell you, he looks super cool in his swim team jammers!!

Congrats to all the RTC'ers and all my friends who Rumpassed in Bumpass this past weekend! You all ROCKED!!

Finally, here's some great shots from our Disney trip...

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Random Disney thoughts

1) Watching our kids get to experience Disney magic was priceless.

2) I'm so glad I was able to capture so many magical moments with my new Canon XSi.

3) Those, including the ones that I didn't capture, will forever be etched into my mind.
--Ansley shaking her booty with Chip
--Ansley as the most beautiful princess we've ever seen
--Ansley's giggles on the Tower of Terror
--Lunch with the Princesses inside Cinderella's castle
--Me, getting to dance with Belle in a play
--Watching Logan duel Darth Vader with a lightsaber
--Getting to ride Space Mountain with Logan
--Logan's look seeing Stitch for a 2nd, 3rd, 4th.... time
--Logan's "wish" came true on his BDay-a 2' tall stuffed Stitch
--Fantasmic show at Hollywood Studios
--SpectroMagic light parade
--Our final evening watching the Wishes fireworks show

4) Even if Coach K says that walking around the Disney parks 10-12 hours a day for 7 days doesn't count as training, my feet and legs say otherwise.

5) Getting up at 6am to run or swim while on vacation is REALLY difficult, but I only missed one swim workout and that was due to a big early morning thunderstorm.

6) Swimming laps in the outdoor hotel,
kinda "L" shaped, pool gets you more open water experience than you realize. Sighting for the deadly corners and all.

7) I don't know what "on your left" sounds like to those that cannot speak English, but during early morning runs, it caused much confusion to those I was coming up from behind.

8) No matter how much fun there is to have at Disney, a 4 & 6 year old WILL meltdown, more than once.

9) Handicapped motorized carts rolling through the park are dangerous enough, let alone while the operator is using a cell phone.

10) Moms with strollers blindly walking while on their cell phones are equally dangerous.

11) The amount of food that Disney serves you each meal is actually pretty disgusting.

12) Every meal in the dining plan contains a dessert and I think I've had enough brownies and cookies for a while.

13) Yes Dana, it is possible to have TOO much dessert-I might not eat dessert for a week.

14) Staying disconnected from any computer, including any contact with Facebook or email, was easier than we thought.

Monday, March 23, 2009


Well, we're off to Disney in the morning! I'll have plenty of pics and stories when we return.

I had a pretty big week of training last week so that I could lay low while in Florida. Make no mistake though, I'll get some nice warm weather runs and swims in!

Stay tuned...

Sunday, March 15, 2009

1 Week to Disney!!

We are all very excited to be leaving for Disney in one week! The kids are so excited for their first plane ride and hanging with Mickey and Co. for a whole week!!

Training has been really good this week. I've updated my race schedule and my training log on the right and left, respectively.

Stay tuned...

Monday, March 9, 2009

My season has begun!

Training for the Kinetic Half Ironman officially began tonight on the track where I dropped a 67 second quarter. I'm so pleased to see how all the hard work that I've poured into my running this off season is really paying off. I've been waiting for a while now for this season to get started and can't wait to get back into racing. Yes, I'm still behind on updating my logs and schedule on the side columns but I'll get better now that I'm on my schedule.

The family is doing well, kinda. Ansley has had the flu twice now. Most currently, this past weekend. Nikki and Logan both got a bug earlier. I'm the only one that hasn't been sick this season. Juice Plus and a flu shot are putting up a nice shield.

Just a week ago, we had nearly 12 inches of snow and today was 80. Crazy Richmond weather. I just can't wait for the warm weather to stay. It's supposed to drop back into the 50's later this week.

I'll post some pics in the next couple of days.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Slacker blogger...

Boy, I've been pretty slack in posting on my blog. Training is going well in this cold. I had an awesome weekend, where all workouts felt great. Though, I'm so ready for some warmer weather. Our Disney trip is less than a month away! We are stoked! Work is keeping me really busy and I'm really enjoying all the responsibility I have. Some days are so busy and I get so many emails that I don't know where to start, but I do enjoy what I do. I know this was a quick post, but I need to get better about posting and updating my training table on the left. Gotta run, Heroes is on...

Friday, February 6, 2009

Cover Boy!

The Richmond Guide is out! And the cover looks great! I'm very proud to be representing the Richmond Tri Club and love the way the cover turned out. We look pretty badass! Click the link above to see for yourself. I'm trying to get my hands on some hard copies to give out to friends and family.

My training has been going really well. I'm enjoying swimming a ton right now. Thanks to learning new strokes and drills that are helping my freestyle immensely. I never thought that I could swim butterfly, but I'm catching on well and actually liking it. I'm getting excited about the race season! If only this cold weather would find someplace else to go...

The Richmond Tri Club has our annual banquet this Saturday. Since none of my nice dress clothes fit, they're all WAY too big, I had to go out and get a new suit. It looks good and I can't wait to wear it out.

Finally, here are some pics of Ansley celebrating her 4th BDay!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Happy Birthday Ansley

Our little Princess turned 4 today. More pictures to come. Once I get them off my camera...

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Time moving too fast...

It's been two weeks since my last post. Can't believe January is almost gone. Ansley, our little girl, is going to be 4 on Sunday. Crazy!

Work is keeping me very busy, so the work day is going by fast. Sometimes too fast as I feel behind and drowning a few times a week. Nothing I can't handle, I like the challenge.

Training has been kicking up a notch. I'll start posting my weekly workouts when I get a little more time to play with the tables. I ran the Frostbite 15K this past Sunday and finished in 1:05:02. That's 9.32 miles in 6:58 minute per mile pace! I'm so stoked about that. Didn't have any real goals, just wanted to run a smooth fast race and be consistent. I'm actually learning some good pacing from Coach K! Monday night track workouts are going really well. I don't like the cold, but I can't miss track work! Swim practice is going very well, even learning how to swim butterfly! Currently feels like a drowning attempt at breast stroke! ; )

Richmond put up the snow forcefield today and we got lots of ice and rain as usual. Just yukky stuff. I'm so ready for Summer weather it's not funny. Bring on the heat and humidity!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Busy Day...

Boy, I had a busy day today. I believe that the full moon makes servers go crazy, as we had way more requests and were very busy today. At lunch, I had a magazine cover shoot! I'm very proud to be on the cover, representing the Richmond Tri Club, for Richmond Guide. It's the local feature guide to Virginia Living. I'll be sure to send out the link to the cover when it's released. After work I headed to the track for a cold track workout. Did lots of plyometrics followed by 6 400s. Yeah, 6 400s in the cold! Reminder, I don't like the cold. I'm a 90-100 degree, 90-100% humidity weather person. On another note, Kevin sent me a text message rubbing in the fact that he was driving in 85 degree weather listening to Bob Marley! Thanks Kev!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Astonishing numbers...

I'm closing out my 2008 training log. Here are the totals:

Bike - 2667.06 miles - 134 hours 44 minutes and 46 seconds

Run - 889.14 miles - 126 hours 35 minutes and 02 seconds
Swim - 55.28 miles - 31 hours 33 minutes 14 seconds
Weight Lifting - 40 hours and 45 minutes

Total 2008 training:
3611.48 miles
333 hours 38 minutes and 02 seconds

Monday, January 5, 2009

A few pics from Christmas '08


Sunday, January 4, 2009

Happy New Year

I ran my first 10K of the year and the Hokies won the Orange Bowl! The 10K was great. I hadn't run in a week or so, and was only 2 minutes off my PR, finishing in 45:21. Looking forward to good things this year from my racing. I still haven't solidified my race calendar, but I will soon. The Hokies win was outstanding! Winning a BCS bowl game is great and we were able to represent the ACC with great pride. I'm looking forward to a great '09 season, in which we'll kick off against Alabama in Atlanta. Mark my words. The Hokies will play for and win a National Championship within the next two years.

Kevin left for California last Monday and has safely arrived. Took a long cross country drive, texting us along the way. Kevin, we already miss you and wish you the best. We've never had a good reason to visit California, so we are already looking at a time to head out there.

We are going through the pictures so I'll have to get some posted soon. Lots of great Christmas pics of the kids.

We're all bummed that we have to start work and the kids have to go back to school. It's been a good, relaxing, enjoyable time off. But we gotta pay the bills.

Stay tuned...