Sunday, January 9, 2011

Using my "Network" for Good!!!

Hi All,

You may have seen my Facebook post from a couple of days ago, asking for you to go to the Pepsi Refresh Project to vote for a project that could have positive consequences for my lovely wife, Kim.  The project is called "Lead A Road Running Revolution for Canadians with Disabilities" and its mission is to invest $100K in putting together a running and funding program for para athletes.

We are being a bit selfish in our support for this project, as Kim is working hard on her running and will tap into it if it is successful - she has been approached by Athletics Canada to potentially become a sprinter and is still working on her 5k time for triathlon purposes.  We are also contemplating putting together our own proposal for the next round of the Pepsi Refresh Project, looking for funds to help create and train the Canadian National Paratriathlon Team.  So, this running project is a bit of an experiment to see if we can harness our extended network to help us out.

The Pepsi Refresh Project is decided through the votes of the masses.  There are projects at the 100K, 25K, 10K and 5K levels, with a total of $200K being awarded each round.  You can vote 10 times per day over the course of 2 months.  You can only vote for a specific project once per day.

Unfortunately, the process to vote is a bit awkward.  To help you out, here is a bit of a primer:

1.  Go to the project page at
2.  Sign in (lower left corner);
3.  Plug in a throwaway email address;
4.  Cick on the appropriate bubble (Yes or No);
5.  If you are new, go through the sign-up page.  This includes doing the two word confirmation captcha.  If you are returning, you'll still need to do the captcha;
6.  If you get thrown off of the project page, go up to the search bubble and punch in "road running" - that will get you to the right place.

Please vote at least once - the more the better.  If we can harness our networks to make this project a success, then the one that Kim & I are working on will be even easier.  Let us know that you are voting via Facebook, Twitter, email - whatever.

Thanks for your time!!!


Sunday, October 24, 2010

October Update

T-8 days until I start my Endurance Nation Outseason Plan - looking forward to layin' it down...

Attended a sports nutrition seminar yesterday with Kim.  Learned some good stuff that I'll have to let percolate in my head for a bit before I take action.  The figures say that I'll need 4000+ calories/day

Am working on clarifying my 2011 Race Schedule - the only thing in stone right now is Ironman Canada on 28 Aug 11.

Two more races this year - Cookie Run 5k on 6 Nov & the National Cross Country Championships on 27 Nov.  A few more on the edges, but we'll see how I feel.


Sunday, August 22, 2010


OK - I am really bad at keeping this blog updated.

I was cleaning up my office here at home today and came across the two training logs that I used this past year. I started keeping the log when I went to Afghanistan last year and kept some pretty good notes. So, here's the summary:

17 Aug 09 - Started log. 230lbs.
6 Sep 09 - Canada Army Run 5k (Kandahar) - 27:30. First 5k race in many years.
4 Oct 09 - US Army 10-Miler (16k) - 1:25:35
24 Oct 09 - First rowing 1/2 marathon (on Concept 2 rower) - 1:43:39
7 Nov 09 - US Airforce Freedom Run (1/2 marathon) - 1:51:00
10 Nov 09 - Concept2's 50k+ Rower of the Week
? Nov 09 - Terry Fox Run 5k - 24:45
25 Nov 09 - Home from Afghanistan - 185lbs!!!
7 Dec 09 - Joined Ottawa Lions Track Club Masters Team
21 Feb 10 - Winterman 1/2 Marathon - 1:48:38
13 Mar 10 - St. Patrick's Day 5k
25 Apr 10 - Limestone 5k - 22:37
30 Apr 10 - Law Day 5k
1 May 10 - Cumberland Duathlon Relay (with Kim)
2 May 10 - Place d'Orleans 1/2 Marathon - 1:45:16
17 May 10 - Limestone Charity Triathlon
6 Jun 10 - Mooseman 1/2 Ironman (1.9k swim, 90k bike, 21k run) - 6:47:36
4 Jul 10 - Sydenham Olympic Distance Tri (1.5k swim, 40k bike, 10k run) - 3:11:19
18 Jul 10 - New York City Triathlon - Acted as Handler/Assistant for Kim in Paratriathlon category
25 Jul 10 - Ironman Lake Placid (3.8k swim, 180k bike, 42k run)- 15:25:11

How do I feel about the past year overall? Pretty friggin' good, I should say. I went to Afghanistan last year with two major goals - 1) to get some operational experience as a Legal Officer, and 2) to get fit again. I had let myself go since my battalion days and with 40 staring at me in the face, I decided to take the opportunity that TFK was offering. There really isn't much else to do, so why not work out like a fiend?

The Ironman was my goal from day 1. I have been a fan of the sport since forever (I gave a speech on the Ironman in my Grade 6 class in 1983!) I signed up for it while on my holidays in Lake Placid last summer, with the full intent of finally knocking the Ironman off my bucket list this year. I had also made a promise to my little guy Keiran that I would do an Ironman for him one day.

Now, Afghanistan isn't the best place in the world for getting triathlon-specific training done. You can run fairly easily, and there are lots of stationary bikes available, but swimming is a challenge (unless you try the poo pond...) I substituted rowing for swimming and managed to pound out 600km worth of it while I was there. I entered and ran every road race that was offered and had a lot of fun. I came back to Canada in better shape than I had been in 12+ years.

The challenge was going to be maintaining the fitness. My lovely wife Kim was aiming to compete in the World Paratriathlon Championships in Budapest in Sept 10, so we decided to team up and work hard in pursuing our individual goals. We joined the Ottawa Lions Track Club, under the guidance of the supremely awesome Helen Cooper. I ran fast for the first time since my RMC days. The improvement in my technique and times was nuts!!

We also started attending an endurance spinning class at Cyclelogik, under the coaching of Ian Fraser. We started with a 1 hour session one Saturday in Dec 09, working our way up to 4 hours by the end of Mar 10. Again, awesome training that helped build a great base for the summer.

Finally, we joined the Swim Ottawa club, under the guidance of Tom Anzai. We didn't have nearly enough time with him (we joined late), but are looking forward to working through the winter with him and the other members of the team.

I was not particularly happy with any of my triathlon times this year - I had some higher expectations, I guess. The Ironman was tough. I am scared to death of the swim, but managed to have a personal best time by 20 minutes. The bike (on my brand new Cervelo P1) was difficult - I definitely need to increase my saddle time by a factor of 2 if I want to compete further. I was a bit of a wreck by the time the run came around, with a pretty sore knee that degenerated into a pretty painful knee by kilometer 20. I was in semi-survival mode for the last half of the run, but finished. You can't imagine the feeling of working for 15+ hours and finally hearing "Curtis Smith, you are an Ironman", the culmination of almost a year's worth of training.

What's next? Indoor track season starts in a couple of weeks and my coach wants to train me for an indoor 5k sometime this winter. Kim & I are heading to Budapest in 2 weeks, where she will do the World Paratriathlon Championships. I am bashing around some ideas for more races to do, which could include something at the Army Run this September, a 24 hour race, the Canadian Indoor Rowing Championships in Feb and maybe another Ironman next summer (I haven't told Coach Helen yet - she thinks that this Ironman thing is out of my system!) On a non-competitive note, I am going to be pursuing getting on either the Triathlon Canada or Ontario Association of Triathletes Board of Directors, with the agenda of getting Paratriathlon wider participation and notice. Similarly, I'll be working with Kim, getting her ready for a bid at the 2012 Paralympics in London, where (fingers crossed) Triathlon will be a demonstration sport. Busy stuff!!

Anyway, that's it. Once my schedule gets clarified, I'll put it up here. Check out our other blog - - for other updates on what we're doing.

Stay chilly!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Back (Again!!!)

OK, it has been almost a year, but I'm back.  I am training hard for Ironman Lake Placid and am currently in Week 10 of an Endurance Nation Ironman Training Plan.

More to follow...

Monday, July 27, 2009

A New Beginning...

OK, enough is enough. I've messed around with this whole Ironman thing for too long, so I am now drawing a line in the sand. I signed both Kim & I up for the 2010 Ironman USA in Lake Placid and we are going to complete it. It has begun....