When it comes to endurance sports, studies show that age really is just a number. Although you may "peak" between 25-35 years of age, that doesn't mean you have to get progressively slower from 35 onward. In fact, masters athletes consistently showing up in top race results from long-distance events like Ironman and The Boston Marathon.
Entries in People (3)
CEO Gear Fisher speaks about his transition from "tech guy" to "team builder," and introduces a few new hires. Read about what it's like behind the scenes of TrainingPeaks, and what core values drive us every day to be our best.
Army Combat Engineer Lee Highsmith is trying to keep his weight under 185 pounds, not only because of a family history of heart disease, but also because 3 roadside bombings have left his lower back too unstable to comfortably support a heavier frame. “One of the things I have to do is watch my weight. During my deployment to Afghanistan from 2006-2007, my vehicle was hit by a road side bomb on 3 separate occasions. Luckily, nobody ever got seriously hurt, just concussions and blurred vision and deafness for a short period of time. Before this happened, I was able to keep my weight around 190-195. Now if my weight gets to 187 or higher, my lower back starts giving me issues, especially when I'm running. My wife (who's a medic) and a doctor have both said that the concussion from the 3 blasts have contributed to my lower back not being able to support the weight. Therefore I try to keep my weight to 185lbs or lower.” In addition to his lower back, Lee has to take care of his heart. “I pay attention to my nourishment because I am not trying to end up like my father and have 2 heart attacks before 60 or like my uncle who had 2 heart attacks before he turned 45, not to mention the other heart issues throughout both sides of my family. I also want to set an example for my kids so that they don't fill their bodies with junk and end up like a lot of kids these days, sitting around playing video games, watching movies, and eating junk food while getting fat.” Aside from managing his weight, Lee also uses TrainingPeaks to quickly and easily record his runs, which include road marches involving approximately 100lbs of gear and lasting for no shorter than 6 miles but possibly as long as 25 miles. “I use TrainingPeaks to help track my progress in workouts as well as what I eat. With it, I am able plan what I want to do easier and it doesn't take long to add the results of my workout to the calendar. I started using TrainingPeaks because it is easier than inputting everything into an excel spreadsheet, especially when it comes to comparing your progress. I can also use it to help with the physical training program that we use to develop our soldiers’ physical fitness.” Lee originally discovered TrainingPeaks when he got his first training device. “I didn't even know about TrainingPeaks until I got my Garmin Forerunner 305. I decided to check out the site and see what it was about. I was a little wary at first with having to pay for a site I didn't know anything about, so I decided to try it for a month, before I committed to using it completely. Glad I did, because this site is really convenient and has loads of information.” Lee’s training goals are a little different from those of other TrainingPeaks members, but the program still works well for him. “What am I training for? Best Sapper Competition. It is an annual competition for the Engineer Regiment, very similar to the famed Best Ranger Competition. The difference is that for Best Sapper, you have to be an Engineer or a Sapper School graduate in order to participate. At Best Ranger, you have to be Ranger qualified, period. It is an extremely physical, very grueling competition that not only tests your physical fitness, but also your knowledge in every aspect of your military occupational specialty (MOS). Teams spend months training for this competition.” Lee’s job is also quite different from how many other TrainingPeaks members spend their days. “What is my job? I'm a combat engineer. Right now, with the current mission, we conduct road side bomb clearance. You can say we are the subject matter experts of Improvised Explosive Devices (second only to EOD, Explosive Ordnance Disposal who we work with). Other parts of our job range from fighting as infantrymen, to emplacing minefields and wire obstacles to deter the enemy or slow him down, and that's not even scratching the surface. Our mission depends on what type of unit we're in. We have the most diversified MOS (military occupational specialty) because we have to know A LOT more than the average combat arms soldier.” Lee has been in the Army for 11 and a half years, leaving him 8 and a half more until retirement. He is currently on his 3rd deployment, with just a couple of months left in his rotation. “We're on a 12 month rotation. We're currently in our 10th month. This is my 3rd deployment with my first 2 being deployments to Afghanistan from 2001-2002 and then again from 2006-2007.” Best wishes for a safe return, Lee.