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"ENDURANCE for Ankylosing Spondylitis"

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IRONMAN Canada, Whistler B.C.

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CLICK ON THE PICTURE ABOVE to donate now to help send me to Whistler, B.C. and raise awareness for Ankylosing Spondylitis. Hurry!! Time is running out!

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My crazy quest for IRONMAN

I am on a mission to raise awareness and money for Ankylosing Spondylitis(A.S.) and arthritis through my competitions and rise to the top as a professional triathlete with A.S.. IRONMAN 2013 here I come. I have been training extremely hard and I won't stop until I get there!!!

"ENDURANCE For Ankylosing Spondylitis"

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Time to get serious. 2013 is a year of accomplishment and goal reaching.


I am excited about writing this post.  Time to come clean.  I am no angel.


I hope that you enjoy.  It is very important to the success of this mission that my audience get involved and show support.  501c3 approval is right around the corner and this will open up many online donation platforms.  This has taken a long time but we are set and ready to go.  We just need volunteers with the interest in networking for our cause, so that we will be more effective with our outreach, which is necessary to the success of the Helgi Olafson Foundation(HOF). 

HOF is always accepting donations via the Paypal "Donate" button on the bottom of the page at http://www.helgiolafson.org

We are also accepting requests to be on the Board of Directors as well as members of the board.  You should have have previous work experience in a management capacity if you are interested in being a Director of the Board.  HOF welcomes requests for more information from those who have a vested interest in raising awareness for Ankylosing Spondylitis and Arthritis.  We will advise you on how you can help raise awareness in your community.


I have lived a lucky life.  I am very happy with how I have changed my life around over the past few years.   I am using this post to express how I feel about my progress and how training for endurance sports has made me a better person who now has a purpose:  Ankylosing Spondylitis Awareness.

Many of you probably think I don't have any skeletons in my closet, but I do, just like everyone else.  I most likely have more than the average Joe.  Many probably also think that my A.S. isn't nearly as bad as theirs.  That I couldn't possibly be training as hard without any complications associated with flare-ups and fusion.

Well, YOU are WRONG.

I come from a family where my dad was an alcoholic( not the angry kind, which was good),  My parents were divorced when I was 10 and my mother has remarried 2 times since.  I love my mother very much and she has lived a hard life supporting the upbringing of my brother and I, and also my two half-sisters.  My father was a great man and I wish he could be here to see what I am accomplishing right now in life.  He would be proud.  He died 4 years ago from Type 2 Diabetes.  My father beat his body up for his whole life.  He did it all: cigarettes, pot, cocaine, heroin, anything that was available.  My father was a functioning addict, but he paid the price for it later on in life.  He ate irregular meals, too.  My father was definitely not a great example to follow as far as maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

In Florida, I spent my early teens doing early teen stuff.  I would take things apart in the garage and try to reassemble, sometimes with success.  I mowed lawns for extra cash and had lots of chores around the house.  My mom's new husband was kind of weird.  He passed out every night on the porch with a beer in his hand.  He yelled at my mom and made her feel like shit.  Not a good situation for a troubled teen to grow up in.

Yes, Troubled.  I started drinking and smoking cigarettes at age 15, along with marijuana.  I was skipping school and just getting the grades I needed to get by.   I got caught stealing merchandise from a store and ended up in teen court.  But I still wasn't a gem.  I ended up graduating from military school in South Carolina and getting a chance to make a fresh start as a college student in the Air Force ROTC Scholarship Program at Florida State University(FSU).

FSU was a shock...but so much fun.  The beautiful women, the parties, the feeling of being "on my own."
It was very addicting to someone like me.  I partied hard and my grades suffered.  I never did my homework and I lost interest in school.  Though I was President of the Arnold Air Society pledge class of 2002, I didn't leave enough time to focus on my school and homework.  I skipped from job to job and worked to support myself.  It was very hard to get it right.

I spent the next few years moving around Florida and working in the restaurant business, honing my skills for my career in culinary arts.  I met many people and I was a part of many great experiences.  I was also a part of many bad experiences.  I was in debt, I had been arrested for alcohol related charges involving violence and driving, I was unable to hold a relationship for more than 3 months.  In my mind, I was Billy Badass.  Not the case.  I was actually a dumbass, with no regard for the law.

My A.S. never really affected me, unless I ran out of ENBREL.  Then I was in trouble. 

I was into some edgy stuff.  Still smoked, still got wasted, cheated on my girlfriends, still drove without a license, still needed a clue.  I ended up losing my license for years to come because of my stupid decisions.  I knew I had to make some changes in my life, but I didn't know how or where to start.  So I moved to Arizona to go to Scottsdale Culinary Institute.  I ended up getting an awesome job as lead line cook opening up a new Asian-themed restaurant in a hip W Hotel.  My interest in school was very minimal.  I was into biking and running alot when I was in Scottsdale, but the place just wasn't for me.

I moved to Portland and checked out the food scene there.  Portland was great!!  Plus, my brother lives there.  It was great to be in the same city as him.  He has also been a huge part in helping me see the light by setting the example as a big brother.  He has been a great life coach of a brother, that's for sure!!  Trust me, he has seen me at my worst!

Portland was the first place that I lived, where I really enjoyed my life.  I had some great friends, I was a part of some great activities and I was happy, but I still wasn't doing the right thing all of the time.  I still needed to find my way.  I had a reputation of being very arrogant and hard to deal with at times, especially when I was drinking.  I developed an addiction to video poker gambling and I lost thousands of dollars. I needed to separate myself from this situation.

I gained some great work experience in Portland, fell in love a few times, and managed to still be unsatisfied.  I decided to apply for a job on a private charter yacht that was built in 1931.  This was a summer job in the inside passage of Alaska.  What an awesome opportunity to make new lasting relationships and to see the untouched beauty of the Final Frontier.  Whales, Bears, Eagles, Salmon, Halibut, Seals, Sea Lions, Sea Otters, Glaciers, Rivers, Waterfalls, you name it!  Alaska changed my life!

When I returned home to Portland I struggled to maintain, but managed to get a place to live and support myself financially.  It was tight, but I made it happen.  I was denied a few great opportunities as Executive Chef due to my record.  This was disheartening.  I ended up landing a job working as a "Food Judge" for the FOX Network series Masterchef 3.  I traveled to different cities around the country to judge the food for the open-call auditions.  Again, GREAT experience!  I wouldn't change any of it because it is a pat of my existence.

Hawaii was the next move.  My parents needed someone to take over their kitchen at the restaurant they own in Hawaii, so it was time to get rid of all of my belongings and jump ship.  It was a hard decision, but I had to give my beautiful black lab Koll away to a friend who could provide a better life for him.  It was a god few years with my pup, but he deserved better and I needed a fresh start.  Now I have it!!!

I am a creative being, and I have always had lofty expectations of myself.  This has continually set me up for failure.  I come up with these great ideas, and then I don't follow through.  I have made it so people don't trust me.  I believe I have burnt a few bridges along the way, and I am sorry to those I have disrespected while living my selfish way of life.  But, I wouldn't change any of my life experience.  I have been so many places, met so many people, and seen so many interesting things while being a part of the GOOD and the BAD, which are equally as important.  I am grateful to accept the burden of my mistakes.  I intend to make a better life for myself and those around me...one that speaks leaps and bounds above my younger days. 

My mom was the only consistent force with me for the duration of my life.  Believe me, she was very hard on me and I am thankful for all of her tough love.  I believe that my mother is a big reason why I have the confidence to carry such a big weight on my shoulders with my mission to raise awareness for A.S., while training to become a professional endurance athlete.  THIS TIME, I am not going to let success slip away.  I have devoted my life to making this work.  With the help of advisers, I have taken the neccesary steps to set up this 501c3 Helgi Olafson Foundation to raise awareness for Ankylosing Spondylitis.

What has endurance sports training done for me?
 I moved to Hawaii in the beginning of 2012.  I quit smoking cigarettes the day I left Portland, Oregon.  It was time to get my life right.  Hawaii is so beautiful.  Though I grew up here from age 6 to 13, and lived here again for a few months at age 22, it wasn't the same.  I wasn't ready until this time.  I have met some great people who live reasonably healthy and active lifestyles.  These were great people to surround myself with.  I joined Waikoloa Canoe Club(WCC) and though new to the sport, became one of the stronger paddlers in the club.  The WCC became my gateway into endurance sports.  One of the members asked me if I would like to run for a relay team for an upcoming Olympic distance triathlon.  I accepted and started training from that day forward.  The race was only a few weeks away.  I did well on race day, but it made me want more.  I wanted the satisfaction of completing the whole race, including the swim and the bike.  This day in March of 2012 was the day that I started on this mission to raise awareness.  I have been sticking to my guns and showing race results and potential for better results.  I have successfully expanded my network to include many great sources of awareness for A.S. and Arthritis.  I have proven and will continue to prove that, even with such a debilitating disease, I am competitive in the top fifth percentile in triathlon.  My Ankylosing Spondylitis is at bay because I am being proactive and listening to my body.  I practice what I preach and I hope to inspire other people around the world to follow suit, whether or not they have A.S. or Arthritis.  Let us get healthy and stay there.  A.S. can be a manageable condition.

Make no mistake:
I would not be able to  do what I am doing without the help of fans, friends, family and the assistance of my sponsors.  Thank you very much Oomph! Sports, Paceline Products, Newton Running, Bio-Astin, The Spondylitis Association of America and Bike Works Hawaii.  I look forward to serving as your ambassador for 2013 and beyond!!  I hope we have a great season!  Together, we can touch the lives of people throughout the world!

Please Email me if you are interested in more information about how you can help.  Thanks for reading!


Saturday, December 1, 2012

Send me to Whistler, B.C. to raise awareness for A.S.. Your donation will also support the local community of Whistler, which is the brand new host for Ironman Canada on August 25th 2013


This will be my last full Ironman before the World Championships in Kona on October 12th of 2013.   I need your support to get me their.  Please click on the link above to donate.  I started with a $100 donation from myself and I need $2100 total to secure my spot.  If you are in Canada and would like to come to Whistler to help me raise awareness at the Ironman Expo, please contact me at your earliest convenience.  I am working on obtaining a special room rate.

Helgi Olafson

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Race Cap and official results for my first TRIATHLON!!!

I am proud to inform my readers that I finished Lavaman Keauhou 2012, 6th in my age group and 41st overall with somewhere just under 500 athletes.  I marked my weakness through my unimpressive swim at 34:04, the 149th fastest swim.  My transition from swim to bike (6:13) was also a nightmare( need to train more on this), plus the picture of Christopher Landers wasn't able to stick to the velcro that I originally had attached to my suit.  Unfortunately they came off in the water, so I had to get the picture pinned on my back before getting on the bike.

I was able to grab the 14th fastest bike split overall.  There was not one competitor that passed me on the bike.  I passed about 200 people and it felt amazing to be riding like the wind on a fun course, including Ali'i Drive, in Kailua Kona.  I almost ran straight into oncoming traffic as I turned down into the Sheraton, but I was able to veer to the right as I bike the 14th fastest bike split of the day at 1:11:04. 

My T2 time was 1:51, which was a bit long.  Again, now I know what I need to work on, and that I have room for improvement in efficiency during certain parts of  the race.

A decent run with room for improvement.  I ran a 46:03 for the 30th fastest run overall.  I feel that I can improve this at least 10 minutes.  The hard push for the finish has to start with a few miles left, not just a half mile.

I need an easier fueling system while racing.  I take Optygen, by First Endurance, Metasalts, and Endurox Excel, all equal parts.  My energy gel is easy to access.  I am also very glad that I brought 2 full electrolyte/water bottles because I dropped one of mine while riding and ran over it.  There really wasn't enough aide on this course.  I remember drinking half of a water bottle they passed me at the turn around, and dousing myself with the rest.  It helped my focus.  I maintained a high cadence on my way back through the wind and pushed in a hard gear on the way down the hills.  It was a super fun ride.

Total Time 2:39:15

I truly believe that, with the proper training, I can probably knock off some serious time on the swim, run and transitions.  I will set my goal at Lavaman Waikoloa, in March at 2:15 

Apparently there were some pictures taken of me on the bike, but I haven't seen them yet.  these pics are from just after the finish   I will post when I receive them.  It was great to have the support of my friends and especially my mom.  Thanks so much to the  support from the Landers family, Ruth Van Doren, Aron, Geri Rott and Tanya Power of Lavaman and to everyone who took the time out to hear what I had to say.

I look forward to my future an assistant race director with Lavaman and the Healthy Cooking contest for Lavaman Waikoloa.  It is going to be done right and hopefully everyone will love participating. 

If anyone has interest in donating startup funds or would like to donate their time to our fundraising team, we would love to hear from you.  The response that I got from this expo was awesome.  This could only get better as we move forward.

Helgi Olafson

Friday, November 16, 2012

Lavaman EXPO A.S. Presentation

I am very excited for race day, which is just over 30 hours from now, but my focus is not completely on the race.  I have a job to do first, which will hopefully be a piece to the puzzle of getting the word out about Ankylosing Spondylitis.  I am ready to go.  Spondylitis Association of America has sent me a great number of informational supplies and goodies associated with A.S. Awareness.  I have also prepared some healthy nutty granola goodies with dried fruit and coconut oil, with the help of Chef Gabriel Rao of Waikoloa Grill 'n Bar. 

I have almost 1000 wrist bands ready to hand out for $1 donations and I am looking to use this expo as a building block for my local network for the Helgi Olafson Foundation.  Gerry Rott and Tanya Power have been absolutely amazing in helping me out and working with me to help get my message out there.  People are starting to believe in our mission. 

I just spoke to Derek Park, a buddy of mine and a coach at Waikoloa Canoe Club.  Derek has started a Non-profit called Paddling for Hope.  He has a race tomorrow and has told me that I have been a part of his inspiration to make this happen.  I feel so touched when people tell me that I have inspired them.  This is my job and this is what I will continue to do.

Derek and I both have a common reason we are racing other than for our foundations.  We are both racing in memory of Chris Landers, who passed this past summer in a head on collision on the Queen K highway on the Big Island.  He touched many souls with his heart and he will be remembered as family to the Waikoloa Canoe Club.  Chris embraced the culture of paddling so quickly, one would never know that it was his first team sport.  Chris used to weigh around 400 pounds and he was always too obese to play team sports, until a few years ago when he decided to beet it and he did just that.  This guy jogged 15 miles everyday in the hot Hawaii sun and watched the weight dissapear.  He made his dream come true by being aggressive and going after something that would seem unaccheiveable for most.  Christopher Michael Landers was a true inspiration to myself and to Derek Park.  Please be with us both this weekend.

Tomorrow I hope to generate buzz about A.S. and gain interest in my cause.  I truly feel that this is only the beginning and this network will be as solid as the rock we live on. Lavaman Keauhou is just the tip of the Iceberg. 

I look forward to the challenging road ahead. 

Please look at http://www.lavamantriathlon.com if you would like to find out more about the EXPO schedule(I go on stage at 1 p.m.)  or if you would like to check out the course.  Race results will be posted on this website early next week.

Thanks for keeping posted until now.  It has been my privelage to share my training blog with everyone.  I hope you all follow my other social networking links.  Please wish me luck on my first competitive triathlon.  This only happens once and it has been six months in the making!!!  The best part about it is that none of this would be possible without the support of everyone around me.


Monday, November 12, 2012

Lavaman is Approaching Fast!!

...And I am feeling great!!  But getting nervous.  I feel much more confident in my swim than a month ago. I have gotten some coaching on my form from my coach Rick Rubio.

I have been doing some calisthenics, alot of stretching, and alot of cardio and high rep resistance training.

I have biked a good number of hills and I am racing a nice tri bike called a "Transition."  This kind of makes me nervous because I am so used to my road bike. I guess we will just have to see what happens.

I will be at the restaurant during me off time today ato work on getting my bars together for the Lavaman EXPO.

I have informational brochures coming in the mail about Ankylosing Spondylitis and the Spondylitis Association of America, as well as my "Endurance for A.S." Bracelets!!

I also have a hotel room  at the host hotel in order to be more effective in spreading my mission and raising awareness.

I will be speaking on stage at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday November 17th about Ankylosing Spondylitis at the expo.

I am ready to kill this race!!!



Monday, November 5, 2012

Hapuna Beach Swimming!!!

Just a short little blurb. 

I went into Kona today and re-upped on protein powder and electrolyte mix.  I also preshopped for my ingredients for my nutritious bar for Lavaman for the healthy cooking contest.  I saw a huge jar of coconut oil for only 17 dollars!!  Nuts and berries and coconut oil are a good start! 

Today I will train with two sports.  Bike to swim to bike.  Then I work in the Front of the House at the restaurant tonight.  I am super excited to get out there and enjoy the sun!!

Thanks for reading.  Stay tuned for more.


Sunday, November 4, 2012

Shin Splint!!! Not good!

Yes that's right!  I have a major issue with a shin splint in my right shin.  I think I need a different style of shoe.  I really like my Gravity running shoes from Newton, but I think I should go more with a lightweight racing shoe, which they also make.

It isn't the best idea to switch right before a race, but I think a couple of weeks is enough time to make it happen. 

Training is going well.  I am logging tons of laps in the pool, which is helping me pinpoint any issues that I have with form.  This coming Tuesday, my form is being assessed by a very experienced competitive swimmer.  I hope that goes well.

Transition training is definitely in my sights for this coming week.

Speaking of Transition, I have recently purchased a Specialized Transition to get me to the next level in competition.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Helgi Olafson

"A 29-year-old chef who has set his sights on one of the world’s toughest sporting events is taking on a bigger challenge to increase awareness of one of the most disabling forms of arthritis.
Helgi Spencer Olafson knows only too well how Ankylosing Spondylitis can cause gradual disability, having been diagnosed with the disease … years ago.
But, aware of the positive effects of exercise and healthy living on the progress of the disease, he is now determined to show others just what can be achieved, by taking part in the 2013 Ironman competition.
And in the meantime, he has set up his own foundation to help educate others on AS which often goes hand in hand with other disabling conditions, leaving patients at risk of permanent mobility loss and even blindness.
Already an experienced marathon runner, Helgi maintains his own fitness levels with a rigorous routine of stretching and exercise...."

Friday, November 2, 2012

30 Posts in 30 Days!! November to Remember

Please excuse me for not posting on the first of November!! 

I will be sure to post an extra post this month!  30 posts in 30 days.

Besides...I am a chef, and taking inventory throws a wrench in the gears.

I still managed to get a great  swim in yesterday afternoon. 1 mile

Today has been a great day so far.  I have been looking at a triathlon bike.  I will just leave it at that.

Brick workout starts now with hill running for about 5 miles.  Then I will swim 1 mile at Waikoloa Pool, followed by a 25 mile bike.  Then it is down to the beach to shower and get to work.

My Ankylosing Spondylitis isn't bothering me in the slightest today, but I am still feeling some action in the form of a right shin splint.  I hope it goes away before the race on the 18th.

Ok!!  Everyone have a great weekend.  Stretch and stay motivated with what is in front of you! Think healthy=be healthy!!!

Please be sure to stay tuned for my training blog as November is to remember!!


Thursday, October 25, 2012

National Health Blog Post Month

Well, I have pledged to blog every day for the month of November as a part of Wego Health's National Health Blog Post Month.  I am excited to post 30 times in 30 days, especially since this will cover the last few weeks of hardcore endurance training for my first Olympic Distance Triathlon.  This is what I have been training for for the past six months, and it is the first step to qualifying for Ironman World Championships 2013, which is my ultimate goal. 

Please continue to follow me as I put my body to the test and raise awareness for Ankylosing Spondylitis.  I am in talks with numerous companies for philanthropic sponsorship for the Helgi Olafson Foundation and 2013 looks like it will be a great year for me, HOF and the entire spondylitis and arthritis community.

Ok enough said.  Follow me as well on twitter @HelgiOlafson.  Time for bed, I have to get a short workout in at 5:00 a.m. before I work a double at the restaurant.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

IRONMAN 2012 is today!!

I am elated to be here on the Big Island today.  It kind of makes me feel nervous for next year, but this is GOOD PRESSURE.  Its the kind of pressure I need to be successful in achieving my goals, but seriously, these guys are fast!  As aI write this post, Marino Vanhoenacker from Belgium is leading on the bike.  He has very strong running ability and he leads by about 7 minutes.  It looks like he will finish the Ironman at just over 8 hours if he can keep it together on the run, but there are many other athletes in this race that can pull it out in the run.  We will see what happens.

Speaking of pulling it out on the run.  I beat my marathon time by 22.5 minutes in the Portland Marathon!!!  It was a great run and I am extremely happy with my time for running 26.2 miles in 3:32:16.

I will see you next year in October Ironman World Championships!!

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Prepped and ready for the race!!

I am excited for my second marathon ever and I am ready for it too.  3:30 is my goal and I feel strong and able to reach this bar.  Please cheer me on from wherever you are in the world.  I am getting the jitters and even though I am about to go to bed, I don't know how easy it will be for me to sleep. 

I took my shot of Enbrel back in Hawaii and I hope my shins and back stay loose.  Weather will be cold in the morning and then it looks like it will be a sunny day, but not nearly as hot as it was for Kona Marathon.  This is my race!! 

I made some great connections at the Portland Marathon Expo and I am excited to see where they go.  After this race, I change gears and prepare to take Lavaman Keauhou on November 18th. 

Please remember to like the Helgi Olafson Foundation on Facebook. 

I will have a post race post to inform everyone on how my race went.



Wednesday, September 26, 2012

22 miles today. 10 day countdown

I would like to start this post by saying that I am the luckiest guy alive to be able to train here on the Big Island.  I saw about 15 smiling faces a number of times up in Waikoloa Village, before I turned down the hill, who were just happy to be exercising.  It really made my day when I told one lady I had seen about five times that I was "running 22 miles," when she said that she walked 4.  I saw another guy that was speed-walking and probably hit 5 miles, and a beautiful young lady with a baby stroller and baby.  It just fealt great to be a part of something that is healthy and makes me and so many others worldwide HAPPY!!  Thanks for making my day and great job out there making a conscious effort to stay healthy.

This morning I was underfueled.  I only ate a banana, endurance vitamin pack, one scoop of protein, and about 400 liquid calories.  Luckily, I carb-loaded pretty well last night and I fueled properly on the run itself.  I also took my ENBREL last night, which kind of made me feel fatigued , so my run was tough, but I still felt great at the end, with slight pains behind my knees, which is very similar to the pains that I had for a few weeks after the Kona Marathon, but nothing serious.
Not A.S. related, in my opinion.  Anti-inflammatories and ice are what I have used since the run this morning, which took me 3 hours by the way  :).  I am right on track for hitting my 3:30:00 mark in Portland.  Now its just some "speed work," rest, and nutrition tweaking.  Time to put coach Rick Rubio's training to the test!! http://www.konapersonaltrainer.com

Speaking of Portland, I have come up with a new slogan, which I will be having printed on a new blue sleeveless jersey, along with the SAA logo and Ooomph Sports Logo.  It will "ENDURANCE for Ankylosing Spondylitis" on the back, and "www.HelgiOlafson.org" on the front.  I just ordered 1000 awareness wristbands for HOF that are blue and have inscribed on them the same words.  These will be available for a $10 donation plus shipping.  I also have 5000 postcards that share my information and a few pictures.  Please let me know if I could send some of these to anyone who wants to help distribute these within their neighborhoods.

I am proposing that everyone who has an A.S. awareness bracelet wear it for a full week from Sunday, October 7th until Saturday, October 13th to celebrate A.S. and arthritis awareness.   On the 7th I will be competing in the 26.2 mile Portland Marathon.  World Arthritis Day(WAD) is on Friday, October 12th.  WAD is asking for pictures of people "Waving" to show their support for those with arthritis from all over the world.  Please be sure to have your awareness band on when you take the picture and send it to helgiolafson@gmail.com.  I would like to make an online collage of all of these pictures.  If you don't have an A.S. awareness band and you want one, I can send you one and you can wear it with me every time I race for A.S.  Finally, Saturday, October 13th represents the Ford Ironman World Championships and is a race for not only the elite professionals who are racing for the win, but also for those who are trying to make a personal accomplishment of being named an Ironman when they finish the 140.6 mile race in the lava fields of Big Island of Hawaii.  This is the ultimate test of human endurance, and the race will bring so many different walks of life with different illnesses and conditions way beyond detrimental, including arthritis.  This is a very important day for me and I will be helping out with the race as a volunteer in any way I possibly can, as well as having a few first introductions with my current sponsors.  NEXT YEAR I will be racing for the win and representing Ankylosing Spondylitis all the way to the bank.

Thanks for reading and don't forget to contact me about the wristbands, like the Helgi Olafson Foundation on Facebook, and show me some love on race day, Sunday, October 7th, 2012.  Send me a picture from wherever you are in the world, wearing your A.S. awareness band.  Make one out of paper or a piece of rubber if you have too, hehe.

Ok now I have to get back in the kitchen.  We have 60 person buyout at Waikoloa Grill 'n Bar this Friday and I have alot of prep to do, along with alot of organization.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

New runners sponsored by Newton Running!!

Much more natural running for sure!!  I recommended these Newton Gravity Runners for people with AS and arthritic conditions if you want to get into running or run better.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

If you have Ankylosing Spondylitis, we recommend using BioAstin as a daily supplement. This is an all natural micro algae called astaxanthin and it works wonders for endurance, flexibility of joints, and muscle recovery. Helgi Olafson is sponsored by Nutrex-Hawaii, which is the company that makes Bio-Astin. He takes this supplement daily along with their Spirulina capsules, which are also all natural. Helgi believes that these supplements are a must for those with any arthritic pain or condition, especially Ankylosing Spondylitis.

Go to http://www.nutrex-hawaii.com/ and put some BioAstin and Spirulina in your cart. Use the coupon code "Helgi" for 25 % off of any purchases from Nutrex-Hawaii.

Friday, September 7, 2012


I have recently realized how inexperienced I am at building a website.  I have all of the ideas, I just can't seem to figure out how to get them on the site.  I have recently reached out to some other ASers for help to get this ball rolling.  I don't know what I would do without you guys!!  Thanks so much.

Well, I had a great run yesterday of about 16 miles through the super rough lava fields.  Man!!  This was definitely not an easy run.  It was alot of fun though!  I saw two donkeys, some wild turkeys, pheasants, and a decomposed cow.

Newton Running sent me a new pair of sponsored running shoes that I haven't run in yet.  They are kind of awkward, but they are supposed to make you run more forward and on your toes, so we will see how that works.  Either way, I need another pair of trail running shoes very soon.

I will have two more long runs before I taper down to race day!!  One will be 18 or 20 miles and the other will be 22 miles.  Speedwork in between.  Obviously I am biking and swimming as well to get ready for Lavaman in November.

My back is doing fine.  Slight pain during and after the run yesterday.  We went hard in Paddling practice about 30 minutes after my run so I was pretty pooped, but I got a chance to put some ideas down on paper for the website and such.

I will attempt to gain sponsorship from GoPro cameras to post feeds of my training and racing experiences.

Super stoked about that.

More later.


Saturday, August 25, 2012

Feeling Good...Feeling GREAT!!

I have had a great week and a half my friends!! I have been on the radio, beat my record personal record for a Volcano Rain Forest Runs half marathon at 1:43( listened to my coach Rick Rubio on the negative split). I have trained like a madman (this is my favorite part), and I have gotten a better handle on my swim. Video interviewed with my buddy Gabe as we take the menu of Waikoloa Grill 'n Bar to the next level (love that guy). I have received sponsored "gravity" shoes from Wendy of Newton Running Company and a super well thought out and constructed pair of training shorts and a training tank from Scott and Julie Gix of Oomph Sports!! Can you believe they make everything by hand?  And Stephanie of Bio Astin and I are in conversations about marketing for their super awesome natural astaxanthin supplement that notably helps me stay limber, even with the pains of Ankylosing Spondylitis, and recover fast from my hard core workouts.  Thanks so much for all of the support y'all! After the Great Waikoloa Canoe Race today, where our crew would have had a shot at the title, had we not taken on so much water, I am here with Bri working on getting The Helgi Olafson Foundation off of the ground. We are super close and Super Excited to make a difference for the future of Ankylosing Spondylitis.  Many of the forms are filed.  We just have a few more to get our 501c3 status.  Also, we narrowed the mission down to one sentence:

"The Helgi Olafson Foundation strives to globally unite the Ankylosing Spondylitis community for the fight to find a cure."

Friday, August 24, 2012

This plus a gallon of h2O

My tank was in serious need of refilling after today's 70 mile bike ride and over 500 meter training swim!  1 hour and five minutes from Kona Bike Works to Waikoloa Bike Works. And an 8 mile paddle with Waikoloa Canoe Club.  Great Waikoloa Race this Saturday.  Big run tomorrow with a negative split.  Its time to ramp up for Portland Marathon.  Six weeks to go.

Time to perform Helgi!

Friday, August 17, 2012

The Helgi Olafson Foundation is officially almost OFFICIAL!!  So far we have a Tax I.D. #., a GE License,  and have articles of Incorporation filed.  We will be completing the next steps within the next week.  Then it will be time to get the website up.  The website will feature a more detailed training account with history and the website will hopefully be more user friendly than this blog.

I am working on the mission statement and I will post it here as soon as I get that worked out.
Something along the lines of:

The Helgi Olafson Foundation (HOF) strives to educate the world about the causes and effects of Ankylosing Spondylitis(AS), through "networking" the journey of Helgi Olafson, who has had this disease since 2002, and is training seriously to become a Professional Triathlete. The Foundation will be operating with the main focus on fostering a more comfortable future of those with Ankylosing Spondylitis.  AS is a manageable disease if one takes the reins, and focuses on living a healthy lifestyle through nutrition, exercise, and listening to their body. 

HOF is looking for help networking when this is all said and done.   We are nothing without a network.  I am very excited to have met as many people in person, on the phone, or through email as I have!!  I can't wait to meet more of you.  Strength in numbers. 

Some other website stuff: 
Helgi's training blog with recorded results of training/diet.
     -coach Rick Rubio's feedback and corrective action
     -training/diet plan to fix issues
     -race schedule
     -stretching routines
Links to:
     -other bloggers involved in Arthritis and endurance sports worlds.
     -websites associated with promoting AS related awareness and the future of endurance sports
     -Road to IRONMAN
     -Waikoloa Canoe Club
     -Waikoloa Grill 'n Bar
     -Bike Works Hawaii
     -Social networking platforms
Open Forum for networking progress and updates for other AS bloggers, endurance athletes, and those who want to get involved with this cause.  
DONATIONS to the Helgi Olafson Foundation
DONATIONS from the Helgi Olafson Foundation to other NFP Organizations and those in need.

Research Studies
AS News
Stories about others with complications that are also taking or have taken the Road to IRONMAN, and how it changed their lives.

Board Members and about them

Equipment Donation for others in need where HOF takes in used or new endurance sports gear like bikes/ bike parts, clothing and electronics.  The foundation's qualified repair specialists, will then rectify any problems or safety issues with the equipment, and find a new home for said piece of equipment.

What do you think SO FAR!?!?

I am getting excited.

Quick recap on the day:

Radio appearance in KONA at 7:00 a.m., then some race-speed time trials after some coffee with swim 500 M, bike 13.5 Miles, and run 4.5 Miles.   Looks like I need some work!! Then off to Bike works Kona to see if my sponsored training gear from Oomph Sports had arrived yet.  No Dice.  Hopefully soon.  I then proceeded to climb Hina Lani and take the high road back to Waikoloa Village.  I definitely needed the nap that I took.  Great day for me today.  Tomorrow will be great too!!  Who is With me?

Thanks for reading.

Helgi Olafson


Friday, August 10, 2012

I am excited to say that I will be recieving a complimentary pair of Gravity Running Shoes from NEWTON Running this week as well as some training gear from OOMPH SPORTS this week.  I am in the process of filing for my NFP Organization this weekend.  I will call it the Helgi Olafson Foundation.  I plan on setting up a few systems within the foundation to help others in need.  I will also donate a large portion of incoming donations to other NFP Organizations to the Spondylitis Association of America, the IAAM, the Arthritis Foundation and more.  I want to also help athletes with the desire to succeed and compete, but not enough money, get the gear that they need to perform.  I would like to serve as a hub for old quality gear and have it inspected and repaired if necessary and redistributed to individuals in need.  Its about fostering the growth of Endurance Sports.

I would also like to offer to speak wherever the world may take me about Ankylosing Spondylitis, and wrestling it to the ground by inspiring others with A.S. to take action by listening closely to their bodies and be honest with themselves through diet, exercise and rest, while maintaining a positive attitude.

I need a website built and I am in the process of manifesting one as soon as possible.  This all needs to get set up before Portland, so I can use it to my greatest advantage.

I want to thank my Coach Rick Rubio and my friend Bri Standing for helping me out with getting this thing going.  I couldn't do it without you guys.  Also I would like to thank all of the readers of my blog.  I am glad I get the chance to have people who matter to me actually watch this unfold.  You are all great people and I am glad to have you in my network. 

I hope, through the Helgi Olafson Founation, that we are able to help others with Ankylosing Spondylitis and I hope that I can be a key factor in educating the world about A.S..  Last but not least!  I hope I have a shot at racing with the Pros!!

Time trials next week with Coach Rick!  Swim Bike Run

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Training and Networking Update and PDX marathon!!

It has been about a week since my last post on here.  I have been training harder than ever and now I am working six days a week at WGB.  The parents are in AZ on vacation, so I am putting in over 60 hours per week.  With 25 hours of training added on to that, there is not much time left for myself.  I am ok with this for now, because I am in the building stages of my career as an athlete.  Once fall comes around and all of the big sponsorships open up to new talent, I will have to review my current profession and see whether or not it is even feasible to stay on part time.  There just aren't enough hours in a day.  Today, for example, has been a great workout so far.  I had paddling practice at 6:00 a.m., which I rode to.  Then I swam for about 45 minutes and then went on a group ride with Bike Works Waikoloa, which was the first time in a few weeks that I have joined them due to my hectic schedule.  It seems that my practicing on speed work and cadence on the bike has paid off, because I was in the front of the pack for the duration of the ride.  When the ride was over, I proceeded to run about 6 miles around the resort.  My coach has been telling me to take it easy on my running, due to the strain that it puts on the backs inner knee joint.  I really need to get this looked at to make sure it doesn't become chronic.  

Now, I am sitting at my desk in the Chef's Office at the restaurant, typing this blog post before I get everything set for the new menu that Gabe, my Sous Chef and I are rolling out tonight and then its time to execute all of the dishes.  I haven't had a day off since last Wednesday, and I won't have one until this coming Saturday. 

On Saturday I am going to the funeral services for Chris Landers, who is a good friend of mine who died in a head on car crash, due to a blown out left front tire last Thursday on the Queen K Highway.  It was a really tragic day on the Big Island.  There was also a well-known triathlete named Jessie Taylor, who was hit while riding his bike in North Kohala by a 16 year-old girl who apparently fell asleep at the wheel.  People need to pay more attention.  Life is too special to waste and it needs to be taken more seriously.  How many more people have to die before we make some changes to laws that will prevent things like this from happening?

October 7th, Portland Marathon.  I have listed the Spondylitis Association of America as a designated charity for the event and I am trying to get others with or without A.S. to race with me for the cause.  I will be featured in the newsletter for the Marathon and I intend to speak about A.S. and my mission to raise awareness throughout the world at this event.  There are over 15,000 competitors for this race split amongst the 5K, 10K, Half Marathon, and Full Marathon distances.  Portland is known as one of the most "walk-friendly" Marathons in the country.  Please email me for information on how to sign up under our fundraiser.  Let's raise awareness for A.S. together!!

I have recently received some sponsorship, but I need to make sure it is ok with those sponsors to talk about their generosity.  I will keep everyone posted.  I will say that I intend to use this page for a "product review" utlility.  One of the main comparisons I would like to do is one on different shoes, and how they affect my running.  I think this will be a great opportunity for shoe companies to get a review from an athlete with A.S.

Most monetary sponsorships for athletes open up in the fall, and that is when I intend to go full blast into marketing myself for sponsorship.  The larger my network of followers, the more potential I have for sponsorship due to the return associated with these companies.  SO PLEASE FOLLOW MY BLOG!!

Here is a link to the fundraiser for PDX:

I intend to create a foundation and possibly even apply for NFP status in the near future.  Would anyone be interested in helping me get this off the ground?

Another idea I am working on is marketing myself to medical research studies, so that I can pay for my training and travel expenses.  I also really need to get another MRI and make sure that my progression of A.S. is monitored on a regular basis.  Part of the foundation will go towards helping support these efforts.

Also, here is a picture of my bike ride the other day.  

Thanks for reading!!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Big THANK YOU for everyone for the support

Thank you very much! It means a lot to be recognized by people with Ankylosing Spondylitis. I really want to reach out to everyone with A.S.. EMAIL ME please with any questions, comments or ideas. All feedback is positive.
Thank you all and please follow my blog. I am about to post my race schedule for the next year leading up to the big race…IRONMAN!!!

How would you feel about changing your quality of life in regards to dealing with the general problems associated with Ankylosing Spondylitis.?   I want to help.  please connect with me for any info on sponsorship or requests for me to organize fundraisers for A.S within the realm of my racing.  Just think, if we can get a team together that all has A.S. to do a Marathon, 1/2 Marathon, 10K, or 5K together, it would foster growth within our A.S. society and force others to look at our organizations and support network in the same light as they look any other common disease.  Yes, that is right!  A.S. is common.

I believe that we can battle this disease...

Stay tuned for more.

-Helgi Olafson

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Here is a picture of part of my daily routine.

Of course there are different days that require different combos and sometimes none of the above. 

Sometimes ibuprofen and ice are added to the list.  And I am out of my "extreme athlete" and "sports" vitamin packs.  My goggles and GPS/heart rate monitor are not pictured here, but they are also necessities.

Swimming is great, because all you need is a pair of goggles and your off.  I usually just swim in my bike or running shorts.

Biking is another story.  Its the most expensive, too.  You've got the bike, the cleats, gloves, shorts and jersey, helmet, computer, pump, seat bag, repair kit.  I also have a removable rack above the rear tire with bungees for carrying running shoes or slippers and a change of clothes.

Had regatta yesterday and swam in hilo at the stadium.  What an awesome pool!!

I think I came up with a race schedule for the next year which puts me in one 70.3 Iron man in California before my qualifier for the world championship Ironman in Kona, 2013.  About 15 races all together, most of them are free and on The Big Island.  My next big race is the Portland Marathon.

Coach Rick Rubio and i have to discuss my list.  After we discuss, I have to figure out how to fund these efforts.  I just can't do this alone....

Who out there in the world connected through those of us with Ankylosing Spondylitis, knows of potential sponsors that would like to have there name on my race and or training gear?

Thursday, June 28, 2012

What can YOU do to help???

Due to the rigorous training schedule of approximately 25 hours per week and a more than full time work load at Waikoloa Grill 'n Bar as Executive Chef, I find that I am not as efficient as I would like to be networking.  I have the ideas and the goals, and I know how to accomplish them.  The problem is that I don't have ample time to get everything done.

Please reach out to me if you or someone that you know is willing to help support my cause.  I have big goals for raising awareness and if you do, too, then we can join forces and be that much more effective.  Why wait, contact me ASAP.  We can discuss our ideas and go from there.  I already have some big things lined up for the near future that mean more money and more awareness for Ankylosing Spondylitis.


503 505 1437

p.o. box 384539 Waikoloa, HI 96738

Thanks very much and I can't wait to here from you.

Marathon Pics!!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Post Marathon Post

WOW!!!  I have gone to a place mentally that I have never been before.  This was probably the hardest thing that I have ever done in my entire life, but definitely one of the most awesome experiences I have endured. 

My body is super achy right now, but it was all worth every drip of sweat and every ounce of pain.  I finished with a huge smile on my face and I represented Ankylosing Spondylitis with pride.  I came 5th in my age group and 55th out of 450 total marathon runners with a total time of 3:54:04. 

Though I didn't meet my goal of 3:30, I still finished with a great time and now I know where I need to improve and train harder for the next race.  My lungs and breathing were completely fine.  My legs and my groin were where the brunt of the fatigue set in, which is probably why I am aching so much today. 

I guess its back to the drawing board and time to focus on improving my swim and swim/ bike/ run combo for Lavaman Keauhou!!  I am going to do my best to podium in my age group for this race. 

I see YOGA in my sights for the near future!!!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Planning my race and preplanning for the days prior.

I met with coach Rick this past Sunday and we rode the part of the Marathon course that I am not yet familiar with.  This was a great idea because now I am able to visualize the entire race in my mind.  After this, we sat sat down at Jamba Juice and talked about race preparation.  So here is what I have been working on:

Take ENBREL for AS early in the week in case I get sick(Tuesday)

One more 6 -7 mile run at full blast (Tuesday)

Not eating hardly any carbohydrates and starches and such until Friday

Eating foods with heavy protein to replenish the glycogen in my muscles

On Friday I will start to load up on easily digested, carb-heavy foods, but not too much.

Drinking 3 gallons of water per day or more to ensure proper hydration and blood flow and to prevent cramping during the race.

Race Packet pick up on Saturday a.m. at Keauhou Beach Resort

Hilo Regatta Saturday afternoon.  Naps in between!!!  Two mile jog in Hilo slow pace.

Carb load dinner party Saturday evening at Keauhou Beach Resort for Ankylosing Spondylitis networking purposes and carbs.

In bed by 11 p.m. Saturday night in Waikoloa. 

Up at 3:30 a.m..  Eat some oatmeal and a banana with my extreme athlete multivitamin and load up on calories from my normal supplements.  Also have a cup of coffee.  USE THE BATHROOM!!!!

On the road by 4:00 a.m. to the venue.

Arrive at venue no later than 4:45 a.m. Race starts at 5:30.

Stretch, warmup, stretch, breathe, stretch, breathe, focus.

START RUNNING!!!!!  Keep a 7 min 30 sec per mile pace and walk(30 seconds) all aide stations(every 2 miles) for maximum refueling.  Ice!! Water, sports drink, cold sponges, GU, Salt tabs, Endurolytes.  I need to provide my body with enough calories and sugars to perform, so I may need some cola, too.  Nutrition throughout the race is key, but I will probably keep it to liquids.  If I feel like I have more gas than I am expending when it comes to mile 18-20 and I am out of the Energy Lab, I will pick up the pace.

Hopefully I will cross the finish line by 9:00 a.m., which will put me in at under 3.5 hours.

Please wish me luck!  Thank you everyone who has taken the time out of their schedule to follow me and my quest to compete in this extremely difficult race.  I am on a mission to spread the word about Ankylosing Spondylitis.  For the duration of this race, I will be sporting the words: "I HAVE ANKYLOSING SPONDYLITIS"


Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Getting Closer To Race Day

I am so excited and extremely terrified at the same time.  My shins seem to hurt in the beginning of my long runs, but the pain lessens as I get warmed up.  I am hoping that this will be the case on race day.  What if I cramp up?  What if I don't have the energy to finish the race?  What if my AS flairs up? 

I need to keep my head in the game. I need to focus on proper nutrition for this race.  I didn't come here to just do "ok" and finish.  I have a goal to meet and I am prepared to push my body beyond its limits to reach my goal.  I need to maintain a sub 7 minute per mile pace if I want to finish in under three hours. 

Whatever it takes!!!

This passed week I have been able to maintain that pace for a half marathon distance.  My biking power and cadence have increased.  I have logged a total of 200 miles biking and 35 miles running this passed week.  I really believe that I need to focus more on nutrition if I want to be a contender and especially if I want to take this to a professional level.

Today I noticed as I was ascending Kawaihae Road up to Waimea that I was getting lightheaded and needed to stop.  I almost passed out.  I NEED PROPER FUEL.  My back and Ankylosing Spondylitis is doing fine and I have a good hold on my stretching routine.  My fatigue on my muscles is minimal as well through post workout protein and constant stretching.  Its the before and during that I need to conquer.  I wish I could just download the information into my brain and know exactly what to eat and take and when to eat and take it.  This is seriously frustrating me.  I am impatient in nature, as a pisces.

Please feel free to post comments and Check out my fundraiser too!  Only a few weeks left.  So far I have raised $800 for the Spondylitis Association of America.


Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Seat and seat post adjustment. From
Level 8 to 9. Seat moved back to level 0.  Let's see how she rolls.  Just got my Garmin today. Time to focus on my breathing and getting a 20 mile run in and taper down the week before the race with some short sprints about five or six miles.


Monday, June 4, 2012

Wow this week has been particularly great.  I had the privilege to volunteer for the first aide station on the 56 mile bike ride and the first on the 13.1 mile run for the Hawaii 70.3 Honu course.  Lance Armstrong won the race and he dominated the entire time, though he was third out of the water.  I admire each and every one of the athletes who entered in this race, pros and amateurs alike!! 

I am coming for you next year HONU 70.3!!!!  This is the race that I plan on getting my qualifying spot for the IRONMAN World Championship 2013 in Kona. 

I have done some heavy running recently and my pace is increasing each time.  I have also added some calisthenics to my weekly routine and I can feel a stronger core.  Today I ran a consistent 6 minute mile for three miles during a 13 mile run.  I feel my body transforming into an efficient machine.  I have never been this fit before, and I know that I have a long way to go before I can compete on a professional level.   Time will deliver.

My main goal in front of me at this time is to concentrate on placing low for the KONA Marathon.  I have less than three weeks to go!  There is no stopping me now!

This reminds me!!  If you like what is going on here and are at all inspired by my training blog, please donate some money to the SAA through my crowdrise fundraiser at: http://www.crowdrise.com/helgiolafson

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

MAN I can eat soooo much more food than I could a few months ago!!!  Pumped up my running recently.  I have done a full marathon in the past thirty hours.  Not to mention 50 miles on the bike and about six miles in the canoe.  After the Marathon I need to concentrate on building up my swimming ability and technique.

The bad news...going to the dentist today brought forth the evidence of a few minor cavities.  Hmmmm.

I can't wait to volunteer for Honu Ironman 70.3 with Waikoloa Canoe Club this weekend!!!  I hope everyone has a GREAT RACE!!  Let's see how the wind is going to affect the northwest side of the island.  Weather hasn't been the greatest lately. 

Please join us for free pupus at Waikoloa Grill 'n Bar tomorrow night for HAPPY HOURS from 3:30 to 5:30...or you can come in and enjoy a Pastrami rueben or Philly Cheese Steak for lunch from 10:00 a.m. to 2 p.m..


Monday, May 28, 2012

I am about to go for a run.  Trying to find some dirt roads and run about fifteen miles today.  Two hours is my target.  The wind is howling so I hope it cools me off because its a hot one today!!

I have been watching old IRONMAN World Championship videos over the past few days.  I definitely have an addictive personality.  I am just glad that it is for a good cause!!   

Please, I can't stress enough that if you support what it is that I am doing, please donate through my fundraiser to the Spondylitis Association of America


Saturday, May 26, 2012


Here is a review on the new Timex IRONMAN GPS Global Trainer.  I am thinking about this one, but others tell me to stick with the Garmin....hmmmmm

I wonder what I should do.

On another note, I ran about 14 miles through a crazy baron lava field with a bunch of mountain goats today.  The footing was compromised for most of my run, but it was a lot of fun!!

Friday, May 25, 2012

Connected via mobile

This is so cool.  I can post with an app for NY android phone!!!

Yeah!!  I have an app for that!! Haha

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Tomorrow is my assessment by my new coach Rick Rubio!  I am super stoked!!

One can only dream to the best of his or her ability. Mind over matter. Quick response from listening to your body and making a consistent effort on concentrating on your diet and health in general, or at the very least, not giving up to a disease that can be managed. Confidence is a requirement. I believe that each and every one of us that has Ankylosing Spondylitis, should "Reach another two inches." A MOVEMENT to make TNF Blockers like ENBREL more easy to come by financially. We need to reach out between the public and the power to make this as well-known of a dream as it ought to be!

I am talking to you Amgen and Pfizer! Let's work together! Help us spread the word about ENBREL and get some funding from the government to make these medications cheaper.

Spondylitis Association of America: You guys are here too!!
Let's stick together

Thank you for reading!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Second thoughts?? No way!!!

Today is Tuesday May 22nd.  I have been through some emotional peaks and valleys since I have started this whole "Road to IRONMAN" thing.  I am always told that I need to calm my jets by my friends and family.  Maybe I really need to take heed with these goals.  If I am not careful, I may burn out early and not attain my goals.  I can't let that happen.

Saturday morning, up at 4:30 a.m. after a long night at work.  I bike to Kona where our canoe club was competing.  I get halfway there and the glass from the people throwing bottles out their window slices my tire and pops my tube.  I couldn't get the stupid hand pump to compress air, so I was a dead duck.  Luckily, one of my teammates stopped to pick me up when they saw me on the side of the road.  Thanks Chris!  So we get to the pier ( which is where the start of the IRONMAN is by the way), and the pump starts to work.  Changed my flat, but I didn't skim the tire to get rid of the glass shard( rookie mistake).  I get bored waiting around for our race, which was at the end of the day, so I bike up Ali'i drive and up the Keauhou hill to the highway.  I took the hill down and luckily didn't get the second flat until I went over a crazy bump on Kuakini Hwy, heading back towards the pier.  So I had to patch the second tube and keep adding air until I made it to the bike shop and got two new tubes.  Then I made it back to the Regatta and still had to wait for our race, in which we didn't get last place, but we had horrible timing.  After the race, I hopped right onto my bike and rode all the way back to Waikoloa to go straight to work.  About 100 miles biked Saturday. 

Sunday morning I woke up at 4:30 and rode to Kona.  It was such a beautiful ride, watching the sun come up.  There was barely any wind.  I rode to the Old Airport, where I parked my bike and within five minutes, I was running a half marathon time trial practice run with the Queen K Tri Club.  I didn't know I would be running with professional triathletes and even IRONMAN winners.  It was an awesome experience, but it really made me think that I must focus better on my training in order to perform on a higher level.  I completed the 13.1 miles in just under 2 hours and was completely dead after the race.  I had to take a nap before work.  Some of these pros did it in about 1 hour and 15 minutes.  It really put a damper on my confidence. 

I think that the moral of the story for my weekend is that I need to expect to be at the lower bracket of athletes before I can get to the top.  I need the proper training and training technique in order to be competitive at a level that fits my level of training.  I have decided to get a coach and record my workouts and together we will see how I can be more efficient.  I only have one month left before race day.

Today was the Bike Works run from the Queen's Shops.  We went to Kua Bay and it was beautiful.  On the way back, Grant and I did interval training and it really helped my performance.  When we got back to the shop, four of us went on a nice <10K run where we also did interval training.  It fealt good to push hard and then not so hard but still hard.  I think it gave us the opportunity to really expand our lungs and get the most out of our breathing and endurance.  Thanks for the workout guys.

Until next time,
Helgi Olafson

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Today is Thursday.  I have had a pretty good week in training.  Our canoe club team won 1st place in our division for the 9 mile race!!!  It was a fun day down at Kawaihae Harbor with all of the other canoe clubs.  It sucks that I had to work afterwards, but hey that is the life that I chose.  

Our first Regatta  of the season is in Kona this Saturday.  It's a quarter-mile race. That should be great, too.  I plan on riding back from Kona as soon as the race is done so I can make it to work before dinner service.  

So on Monday I woke up with a sore throat.  Usually I don't get sick, but due to my Ankylosing Spondylitis, and more importantly, the TNF blocker that I take, if I do get sick, its usually pretty bad.  I didn't think much of it so I went for a huge run down the Fire Road to Puako from Waikoloa Village off of Hulu.  Then, feeling great, I shot south down the Queen Ka'ahumanu Highway to Waikoloa Road and back up the hill.  I fealt awesome and did the run in 1 hour 45 min.  It was between 15 and 16 miles.  The next morning before doing the Costco run for the restaurant ( yes, it's the smart thing to do for small business here on the island),  I rode with the Bike Works crew for their Tuesday morning community ride from the Waikoloa Bike Works at the Queen's Shops.  That was a great 40-45 mile ride with breathtaking views of the South Kohala Coast.  Then it was time for a quick nap before our Tuesday evening paddling practice.  Yesterday I got the juice to go out to Kona and back before work.  I had a great 60 mile ride and made very good time in about 2.5 hours.  That is when it hit me.  I started to feel very under the weather, and I had to complete my shift at work so I could get some theraflu in me and crash out for the night and hope for a better day(today), which is kind of the case, but we will see how it plays out.  

This training is really making a difference in my stamina, endurance, and physical strength and productivity as an athlete, but it also takes up a lot of time and can take a toll on your health if you are not careful.  I'll be back at it tomorrow for sure!!


Friday, May 11, 2012


Today is Friday and I feel great.  My back is "STRONG like BULL!"  I had a forty mile bike ride yesterday.  The wind on the Big Island is weird!!  It completely changed direction from one day to the next.  I kind of like the extra push that it requires to get through it.  But there is nothing mor fun when you have the wind at your back and you are just flying...IN THE ZONE!! 

Work was decent last night.  It seems that my new Pork Cutlet Marsala is a winner with the diners at Waikoloa Grill 'n Bar.  May is usually a slow month so hopefully we can bring in some business with this new "Summer Fare" menu. 

I am up to $590 of my $5000 goal to raise awareness for Ankylosing Spondylitis by June 24th, 2012.  The fundraiser has only been posted for 3 days!!  If you haven't checked it out yet, please click on "My Charitable Life" at the top of this blog. 

I also have nade a few big contacts over the past coupl of days in the AS world.  Elin Aslanyan of the Spondylitis Association of America has been a wonderful help in giving me the advice to get this thing off of the ground.  I have also made some contacts with major groups where I will be able to share and publish my story and hopefully inspire others with AS around the world.  Life is good!!

Just enough time for a ten mile run before what will hopefully be a busy night at work. 

Tomorrow is the first long distance race of the season at Kawaihae.  6 guys in one canoe for 9 miles nonstop.  Let's do it WAIKOLOA!!! 


Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Welcome to my blog!!


Hello everyone!!  This is my first post.  Man is there evr a crazy wind up in Waikoloa Village today.  Yesterday I had a nice 50 mile bike ride with some new friends from Bike Works Beach and Sports down in the Waikoloa Beach Resort.  It was a fun "community ride" and I won a pair of bike socks for completing our route as the closest biker to 10:15 a.m.

Later, after bringing the guys at the shop some of our new lunch items from Waikoloa Grill 'n Bar, I got my road bike body geometry fit for maximum performance.  I then proceeded to ride up the hill 6 miles against the gnarly Waikoloa wind. 

Then I came home and set up my Crowdrise fundraiser and did some networking before our tuesday evening paddling practice, which was awesome!!  I tackled the wind three times in one day.  Made it my B$#%^!! 

Anyway,  I just recieved my first donation this morning from an author from California for $250, which goes to the Spondylitis Association of America.  I am on a mission to raise over $5000 by the day of the Kona Marathon, when I will run the 26 mile race.

Today I am running down through Hulu to the fire road that comes out on the Queen K highway at Puako, where I will turn left and run to work.  I will shower at the beach before going in.  It's hot and I WILL SWEAT!!!

Tonight we roll out our summer fare menu.  Come join us to celebrate!!

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