Saturday, November 29, 2008
Next post will either be from Japan or on the trip to Japan!
Below is the video of the 1500m A final
1. Sung Si-Bak Korea
2. Olivier Jean Canada
3. Park Jin-Hwan Korea
4. Lee Jung-Su Korea
5. Sui Boaku China
6. Michael Gilday Canada
Friday, November 28, 2008
Below is about half of my 1500m Quarter final from yesterday.
Thursday, November 27, 2008
We have also had the chance to get out and experience Beijing a bit as well over the last couple of days. Tuesday, we headed over to the silk market to do some shopping for knock off designer goods. In the ever exciting world of the marketplace, you have to bargain with over zealous vendors who will grab, pull, hit and yell at you in order to get you to come to there booth. Everyone is selling almost the same thing and there are more English speaking Chinese people at the markets than anywhere else is China I’m sure. They see a tourist and immediately try to grab your attention and get a huge mark up out of you. The best way to get your price is to make them think you are interested and then walk away. This alone often brings the price down by about 100 yuan (20 cdn). If you ever find yourself in Beijing and at the market, the rule of thumb is to never pay more than half of the initial offer and 90% of the time you should play less than that.
Tuesday night we went out for dinner to a local hot pot restaurant. A hot pot is a basically a cauldron with fire in it surrounded by a ring of boiling water. You are brought big plates of uncooked meat and greens that you submerge in the boiling water until cooked and then remove them, dip them in a dipping sauce and enjoy. It was actually really good although the sauces were a bit weird. Our waitress was also hilarious. She was really concerned that we do it the proper way and found it hilarious every time a group of hungry athletes would throw a ton of meat in and then devour it in seconds.
the hot pot
Wednesday we had a the last practice time of the day (7pm) so we took advantage of the chance to go over to the Birds Nest and the Water Cube. After seeing these impressive structures on TV this summer, it was really cool to see them in person. They are truly spectacular up close. We were able to go in and walk on the field and see the enormity of the stadium from the middle. It is surprising how personal a stadium with 91000 seats can feel given the right architecture. The water cube was pretty neat too although we were told it is way cooler at night when they have a light show with the walls.
Usain Bolt's view during the Olympics
This thing is huge!!
It was nice to get to experience some touristy things while we were here. To often we travel into a country, compete and then leave. Even though what we did was very like any typical tourist it is still nice to experience what we can. But after a couple days of that, its back to competition mode. World Cup #3 starts tomorrow. I will be skating a 500m and a 1500m. I haven’t skated a 500m on the world cup since 2006 so I am happy to be doing one. I will try to do a summary of racing after each day. I have also posted a bunch more photos in addition to the ones here in my picasa account which can be accessed by the link on the right hand bar.
Lastly, good luck to everyone racing in Calgary this weekend.
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Friday, November 21, 2008
Monday, November 17, 2008
L to R: Liam Mcfarlane, Jessica Gregg, Richard Shoebridge, Jessica Hewitt,Michael Gilday
Saturday, November 15, 2008
On Wednesday we did some testing to see where we are physically. But first of all let me set this up a bit. The testing we do is done on the bike. We do this because doing the test on the bike is closer in terms of muscles and systems used to skating than the other way of doing the tests we did, which is running on a treadmill. We haven’t been on the bike much lately, obviously because we have been on ice training and competing, and I wouldn’t say we do a lot of biking except for at the beginning of the season, but we do a lot more biking than running. It’s obviously not a perfect situation, but as long as we do the same thing each time, we should get accurate results.
The tests that we did were an incremental bike test and a maximum aerobic power (MAP) test. The incremental bike test works like this. You jump on the bike (no ordinary bike, this is a teched out exercise bike called the velotron) and start spinning. Before any resistance is put on, your finger is pricked and your blood lactate levels are checked. As long as your blood lactate is under 2mmol, you are ready to go. A load is then dropped on (resistance). For myself, I start this test at 200 watts. Each three minutes, the resistance is increased by 25 watts and blood lactates are checked. When your blood lactate level reaches 6mmol, the test is over. This normally takes about 20 minutes give or take a couple minutes depending on the person.
The MAP test works as follows. On the same bike you start spinning. A load is put on. The difference here is that the load goes up 25W each minute instead of each three minutes. After about 8 minutes of this your are hurting really badly. This is where you try to push through. The test is done when you can’t finish a minute at a load. So for example if you start at 200W after 8 minutes you will have completed the 375W stage. The wattage is then upped to 400, and if you can’t complete a minute at this load, your test is over and you will have finished at 375W.
These tests have various applications to our training and the results are analyzed by our coach and our strength coach. They are then able to make inferences about our target heart rates for different aspects of training such as recovery and the development of our aerobic systems.
This round of tests was done at a time when we were in a fairly hard training block and as such we would have expected our results to be down a bit. But some people increased and most were similar to previous testing results. This is a good sign for everyone and shows that we are doing the right things even though the training we have been doing lately isn’t specific to the method in which the tests were performed (biking).
After finishing that hard training block yesterday, we are now heading in to a recovery week before we head off to the next set of World Cups in
On a completely unrelated note, I watch an interview on the news the other day with Melissa Fung, a CBC journalist who was held captive in
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Its like Christmas in November!!!
We are very lucky in Canadian speedskating to have number of great sponsors.