Pre-race jitters getting the best of you? Triathletes, fear not! Dive into our blog for effective strategies to conquer those pre-race nerves and shine on race day.
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Beat the heat while prepping for Kerrville Tri! Dive into our blog for refreshing swim workouts with a kickboard, designed for triathletes. Boost technique, endurance, and performance in the water. Let’s make a splash!
“Mind over matter.” “If you can believe it, you can achieve it.” Hokey catchphrases or the real deal?
I say they’re the real deal! As a 30-something mom who loves multi-sport, I know perception turns to reality. Given the importance of having a positive mindset during the training, here are a few personal mantras and go tos that keep me kicking, pedaling, and jogging ahead, one foot in front of the other.
Find the Joy
Training should be fun. F-U-N. Luckily, I am an hour away from quiet country backroads. Once or twice a month, I make the drive to train out in that area, so I can take in new sights like horses, cows, and wildflowers. A change of scenery keeps training exciting.
For me, those quiet early hours or few miles of solitude set me up for the rest of the day. In a loud world of constant online and in-person distraction, 60 minutes of uninterrupted think time are always appreciated for getting my mindset centered.
If silence is not what I am craving, I appreciate a new playlist- will run for new tunes! Ever been jogging then bust a move at a crosswalk? It’s fun!
And some days, company is key. If I can talk my non-triathlon husband into a few bike miles with me, even better. Find ways to incorporate your family, warm ups and cool downs included. Try stretching with a toddler on your back— hip opening.
Movement is the Gift
If I ever feel stuck in the never ending hamster wheel of training— looking at you long run, I shift perspective. Think back to an injury. If you cannot recall one, you are likely very young, or have yet to start training. Life happens. Shoot, I have broken a pinky toe on a coffee table. Nothing like a setback to remind myself that movement and a healthy body should never be taken for granted.
Race Day is Coming!
Did you sign up yet? I say, do it, then tell 3 people. Make it a definite date, and stay positive. When I feel negativity or nerves creeping in, I reframe it. Race day is the party- the payoff. The icing on the training cake- and a giant celebration of every hard effort and sacrifice it takes to get there. You are worth it, and you can do it! And remember, tri races are like potato chips- you will never have just one.
Keep these ideas in your back pocket for the next time your mindset could use some re-aligning and keep chugging along, because race day will be here before you know it!
Written By: Heather Henley, Kerrville Tri Ambassador
The competitive nature of triathlons and the amount of physical effort it requires brings drastic changes in people who participate. Triathlon training is a life-changing experience as it reshapes and enhances multiple aspects of an individual’s life.
Let’s discuss how triathlon training can be beneficial for your physical, mental, and spiritual well-being:
Perfect workout regime
Triathlon training proves to be an excellent full-body workout regime. The cross-modal training for a triathlon involves intense exercise for your muscles. While swimming tones muscles of your upper body, cycling and running strengthen your lower body.
The best way to lose weight
The passion-driven training helps you to burn unhealthy body fat. Consequently, you lose weight in a natural way. Triathlon training makes you fitter and strengthens your muscles as well.
The rise in physical activity in your life will boost your overall energy level. It will augment your physical wellness. Training for triathlon aids you in reestablishing your connection with your body. You become full of positive energy and start to feel productive every day.
Amazing health benefits
Triathlon training is known for its preventive and curative effect on various lifestyle-related ailments. There are numerous anecdotes of people gaining relief from heart diseases, diabetes, anxiety, obesity, and hypertension by going through triathlon training sessions. The rigorous cross-training keeps you physically and mentally healthy.
Triathlon is an interesting but challenging sport. Finishing each triathlon event gives you a sense of achievement. This in turn makes you feel confident about yourself.
Handle stress better than before
Continuous exposure to physical activity and a competitive environment makes you resilient. Trainees learn the art of staying composed in stressful situations. This art is immensely helpful even beyond the racecourse of the triathlon.
The sense of achievement that comes with triathlon training also helps you to stay motivated. You can do several activities while training for a triathlon instead of sticking to a constant regime. This never lets you feel bored and gets you going.
Be an inspiration for others
You can bring positive changes in the lives of those around you. They may get inspired by your journey of triathlon training.
Sense of fulfillment
Training in triathlon makes you feel like you are on a mission. It enables you to stay focused and happy. The excitement and competitive spirit of the triathlon enhance the sense of purpose.
Triathlon training fills you with positivity by improving your physical and mental health. The extensive training develops a sense of responsibility, leadership quality and time management skills. It is a door of opportunities to understand yourself and have a life-changing experience to make yourself the best.
What are the different triathlon distances? We cover the basics to help you choose the right one for you
A triathlon is a sports event that rewards your grit, stamina, and endurance. It is a comprehensive competition which includes swimming, cycling, and running. A triathlon is obviously challenging, but you can do well with proper training and a positive mentality.
When you hear triathlon, you might think of mass swims and endurance professionals racing in a full distance triathlon – Ironman – which involves a 2.4 mile swim and 112-mile bike ride before culminating in a 26.2 marathon run. It is a common misconception that is all triathlons can be.
In fact, there are many different triathlon distances, with most of them being very beginner-friendly.
An important factor that determines its difficulty is the distance to be covered. Knowing the distance implications of various triathlons helps you choose the right one for yourself and prepare for it accordingly. Let us look at different triathlon distances.
Super sprint triathlon is a shorter distance sprint triathlon. This distance event usually covers a total distance usually of about 8 miles (3 km). It is perfect for those who want a taste of what triathlon is all about. The distance breakup can vary greatly in this distance but is usually is 300 to 500 m of swimming, 10 km (6.2 miles) of cycling, and 2-3 miles of running. Despite being considered a beginner’s triathlon because of the short distance, it can be just as tough for veterans that want to see their max speed.
For beginners who have some previous experience and want to take it up a notch, a sprint triathlon is a logical progression after a super sprint. This is one of the most popular distances for triathlons. This distance can vary greatly as well. So be sure to check the specifics when researching triathlons in your area. A sprint triathlon is usually about a total of 15-25 miles. An example of a sprint triathlon distance is a 500m Swim, 14.5 mile Bike, 5 Km Run.
Taking part in a sprint triathlon is a great way to check how your training is going when you are training for a longer distance. Participating in a sprint 6-4 months before an Olympic or Half Distance is a great way to practice and test your race tactics.
The name gives away the increased difficulty that comes with this triathlon. This event distance took on the name Olympic after triathlon joined the Olympic Games in 2000. With an overall distance of around 32 miles (51.5 km), this triathlon requires you to exhibit a higher endurance level. It comprises 1500 m (0.9 mile) of swimming, 40 km (24.8 miles) of cycling, followed by 10 km (6.2 miles) of running.
Training for an Olympic takes significantly more time and planning. There are usually race cut off times at these events, meaning knowing your pace is very important.
Half Distance/ 70.3
Half distance triathlons have become increasingly popular over the years. This 70.3 mile-long strenuous physical course involves covering 1930 m (1.2 miles) in water, 90 km (56 miles) on the bike, and 21 km (13.1 miles) on foot.
Racing a half distance is very obtainable with a structured training program. Half distances can take up to 8.5 hours to complete. Athletes racing in these longer distance events should also pay attention to on-course support and have a nutrition plan. A 70.3 distance is great for athletes that want to focus on endurance over speed. Just like with moving up from a sprint to Olympic, racing a half distance as part of your full distance training is a great idea.
If half distance is not enough for you, you can double the distance by participating in a full distance triathlon. This is commonly associated with the Ironman brand but there are tons of awesome events that offer a full distance triathlon. Covering 140.6 miles (a little over 226 km), a full iron triathlon is extremely tough, even for veterans. It requires you to swim for 3900 m (2.4 miles), cycle for 180 km (112 miles), and run for 42.2 km (26.2 miles).
Athletes racing the 140.6 distance should invest in more specialized equipment like a triathlon bike and potentially a wetsuit. The training regimen for a full distance is much longer and requires a dedicated schedule.
From double triathlon to decuple triathlon, every version that exceeds full distance triathlon falls in the ultra category. These triathlons can stretch over a number of days. The most-demanding forms of triathlon fall in this group.
These distances can be seen as milestones for you to reach over your triathlon career. Choosing the most suitable distance, as per your ability and experience, can prove crucial to how you perform in the competition. Make sure to pick a distance that doesn’t push you too much and that you can enjoy it.
Sighting Tips for Open Water Swimming
Swimming in the correct direction during open water can be a challenge for most athletes. This is why learning the proper technique for sighting in open water is crucial during training. Here are a few tips for sighting that can help when you line up for your next event.
Print out the swim course map and go to the swim start to look for landmarks to use while sighting. Ideally, you want to survey the area at the same time when the swim will occur. This will give you an idea of where the sun is hitting the swim course and if the glare will be an issue.
Look for landmarks in the distance that are distinctive and easy to spot. Things like buildings, peaks of trees, or dips in the tree lines are great for spotting. Buoys can be hard to spot during the swim, and especially if you are slightly turned in the wrong direction, the significant landmarks provide an excellent alternative for sighting.
Come Up With a Game Plan
If the swim course runs parallel to the shores, use the shores to gauge if you are swimming in the correct direction. Look back towards the shore when you are taking a breath on your side while you are swimming. Also, use other swimmers to help you gauge if you are swimming in the correct direction. If you were swimming with a pack and suddenly found yourself swimming alone, popup and sight for landmarks or buoys to check if you are swimming in the right direction.
Prep Your Gear
Keep your goggles clean and apply your favorite anti-fog spray inside the goggles before the event. A good, clean pair of tri goggles will allow you to see better and further down the swim course to spot the swim buoys and landmarks.
Practice, Practice, Practice!
Here are some tips from seasoned triathlete and High Five Events‘ Operations Manager, John Chung. “Practice swimming with your head up in the pool. Use the cool down set for practice, and establish a rhythm for when to take a stroke for sighting. I like to swim two normal stokes and a sight stroke, pull, pull, sight. To get your head elevated slightly above water, push down instead of pulling through during the catch.
On your next open water swim practice, figure out which way you naturally curve to when you swim. For example, I tend to swim to my right, so if the buoys are on my left on a counter-clockwise swim course, I tend to swim away from the course. So for me, I need to look for buoys to my left when I sight during the swim. Sight 2 to 3 times to correct the direction in which you are swimming. First, locate the buoy or landmark you’ll use. Second, adjust your swimming direction to get back on course. Third, continue to sight as often as needed to make sure you are swimming towards the buoy or landmark.”
Make it a point to practice sighting during the cool-down portion of your swim sessions to have this skill mastered for your next event! Happy swimming!
Why Creating a Relay Team is The Best Way to Tri
Just when you thought Kerrville Tri couldn’t get any more fun, now you can make it a team effort! Recruit friends, family, or co-workers and create your relay team for Kerrville Triathlon’s 10th-anniversary celebration this September 26-27! The 10th annual tri takes place in the heart of the Texas Hill Country, Kerrville, Texas, with scenic views guaranteed. Relay teams can consist of two or three individuals to help you divide and conquer your upcoming tri while having a blast in the process! Check out a few reasons why relay teams are a great way to get into triathlon and why you should create a team for this year’s Smokin’ Good Tri.
Try something new
Maybe you know about triathlon, maybe you’re new to the scene. Perhaps you’ve cheered and supported friends at their triathlons, but you’ve never participated in one. Creating a relay team is the best way to get introduced to the sport! Everyone experiences pre-race nerves, especially if it is your first time ever completing a tri! That’s why building a relay team of two or three will help take some of the pressure off so you can focus on the fun. Split the tri three ways, or if your team has two members, one person does the swim, while the other person does the bike and the run. Depending on your individual skill levels, this can be accomplished in any combination. Train with your team, experience the highs and the lows, and get a taste of your new favorite sport.
The more the merrier
You can always get one friend to tri along with you, but why do that when you can triple the fun?! A three-person relay team is triple the action so, get two friends or co-workers to create your relay team. Here are a few ways to take your team spirit to the next level during your training!
- Create a sweet team name
- Make custom gear to show your team spirit during training
- Start thinking about what your team will wear on race day
- Come up with a team motto
- Have fun with it!
What feel is your team going for? Will your team opt for funny costumes for laughs out on the course? Or some matching outfits to show your fellow triathletes your team means business! With so many choices, your team will love this. And it’s a great way to really get you excited to keep working towards your goal.
You could use the help
Injuries happen. No matter what lengths you go to to stay safe during training, sometimes they just happen. But are you going to let that stop you from achieving your fitness goals? Not so fast! An injury that may prevent you from swimming might not stop you from cycling or running. creating a relay team for Kerrville Tri to test your boundaries during your team training sessions is a great way to stay active while continuing to strengthen your muscles! Just be sure you’re comfortable and aren’t in pain when training. You never know, cross-training might just help speed up your recovery!
Create a relay team that brings your buddies back together to make some unbeatable memories. Get the old high school/college crew together. Make it a family affair and create an all-sibling team, or give the ‘rents a challenge you know they won’t be able to refuse! Take on a new challenge with your run group and create a relay team as a way to expand your fitness routine. Whatever direction you go, make this something you won’t soon forget. Participating with loved ones by your side and cheering you on, creating a relay team will make your Kerrville Tri experience unlike any other.
Push Your Limits
Triathlon is a fun way to push your body’s limits, but we know making time to train for three sports can be difficult on top of everything else life throws your way. If you have a tight schedule and know you won’t be able to properly train for multiple disciplines, focus on one or two disciplines to push your limits! Find someone who swims like a fish in the water. Add a member who gets speeding tickets on their bike for going too fast. Pick a runner whose feet seem to never touch the ground because of their speed. Assemble this super team and hold each other accountable to keep up with training! Before you know it, you’ll be ready to show up on race day ready to set some new records or even take home 1st place!
Whatever your reason for creating a relay team, there are two things left to do: build your team to divide and conquer Kerrville Tri and register!
Performance Sunglasses for the trendiest triathletes
When it comes to being a triathlete, there is a lot of gear needed to race your best the morning of a tri. However, there’s an important piece of tri gear that often gets overlooked: performance sunglasses. After all, you wear them for 2/3 of the tri during the run leg and bike leg. We know looking for the right pair of shades that look great and meets both your running and cycling needs can be difficult. Find a pair that meets your personal style and performance needs with these recommendations of reliable, stylish performance sunglasses for your upcoming tri.
Performance sunglasses are a must. They protect your eyes from dirt, harmful rays from the sun, and other possible debris that may come your way during a race. The last thing you want to do is fidget with a pair in the middle of your race. Having the right pair of sunglasses can make or break your performance on race day. With these stylish performance sunglasses, you’ll be ready to crush it this year’s Kerrville Tri, and look cool in the process! Keep this in mind next time you’re in the market for some tri shades: the lighter the better, protection from UV rays is crucial, and comfort is key.
If you’re a podcast lover like us, you are in for a treat! Check out our top favorite health and fitness podcasts.
Whether you’re looking for a boost of motivation or just want to practice a healthier lifestyle, turning to podcasts for guidance is a great source. Not to mention a great way to learn something new while on the go. Keep reading and check out some of our top health and fitness podcasts for every type of athlete!
This podcast explores and dissects what it takes to live your life to the fullest, both inside the gym and out. Instead of focusing strictly on the physical aspect of incorporating healthy habits into your life, his topic range spans from tips for overcoming anxiety to challenging CrossFit workouts. Ben Bergeron shares his insight and knowledge about maximizing your benefits when it comes to your health, fitness, mindset, and relationships with others.
The dynamic duo, Marni and Jesse, interview the best of the best health and wellness experts from around the world to educate and inspire listeners by giving us the tips and tricks to live your personal version of Ultimate Health. This podcast goes for a laid back approach of simple techniques you can use to alter your lifestyle. They also offer an Ultimate Weekday Workbook to help keep track of your health and wellness goals!
Burning fat and having fun in the process with this hilarious podcast. Learn more about what goes on the health industry with this feel-good podcast that’s perfect for training runs and rides. It’s great for all ages while taking a humorous approach to giving great information on how to live a healthier lifestyle.
Married couple, and professional athletes, Lauren Fleshman & Jesse Thomas, use this podcast as a chance to dive into the complications and chaos that can come with the integration of sports, love, and business. Led by listener based questions, this podcast aims to help you find a balance amongst all three by giving you no-nonsense tips and tools to use that will help you make the most of your life by capitalizing on what you have the power to control.
This weekly podcast was created with the goal of taking listeners on a journey to lead a healthier lifestyle with an eager and open mindset. Author and Ultra-Athlete, Rich Roll, takes a progressive, free-thinking approach when exploring all things relating to your personal and professional development with the help of some of the worlds brightest minds to educate, inspire and empower you to unleash your potential and a better you.
The best thing about podcasts is you can listen anywhere, anytime. With these health and fitness podcasts, you’ll learn tips and tricks to improve or change your lifestyle for the better. Whether you’re going out for some exercise or cleaning the house, give these podcasts a chance to see which one is best for you!
Try these dryland swim training exercises to help build strength and improve your performance in the water
Training for the swim portion of your upcoming tri is always important. Although this workout won’t be identical to the benefits you get while actually in the water, such as perfecting your form and practicing your breathing; focusing on these muscles is valuable to enhancing your performance during your tri. Think of these exercises as a way of targeting the same muscle groups you would activate while swimming to keep making forward progress when you’re unable to hit the pool. These dryland swim exercises focus on working your core muscles, quads, glutes, chest, arms, back, and shoulders much like you would in the water.
A burpee essentially works all the muscles you would activate during a pool session, but is especially beneficial to help build your stamina. Full body and functional exercise that works on your muscle endurance as well as aerobic capacity.
- Start standing with your feet shoulder-width apart.
- Lower yourself into a squatting position and place your hands on the floor in front of you.
- Jump your feet back, putting yourself into a pushup position.
- Do a pushup.
- Jump your feet back into their original position.
- Stand yourself upright, jump into the air, and clap your hands over your head.
Repeat this exercise in 3 sets of 15.
For this upper body exercise, you need some weight. However, stay light and stretch your shoulders well to reduce the risk of injury.
To do this type of Lat pulldown:
- Sit down at a pulldown machine and place your hands wide apart on the bar, palms facing forward.
- Bring the bar down straight down to your clavicle.
- Keep your torso still as you pull your arms down.
- Draw your shoulders back, pulling the bar down as you exhale.
- When the bar touches your clavicle and your shoulder blades are completely contracted, count to 2.
- Slowly bring your arms back up to starting position, as you inhale.
Control is key during this exercise. Trying to go fast will not work your muscles efficiently and can injure you. If you keep the weight low, you can do 3 sets of 25 for this exercise. don’t rush the exercise don’t go too fast or too slow
If you do not have access to a pull-down machine, pull-ups will also work your back, muscle, and arms, providing great swimming dryland workout. You can even use the monkey bars at a local playground for this one.
How to do a proper pull-up:
- Move your arms shoulder-width apart and grasp an overhead bar with a firm, overhand grip.
- Hang so your arms and legs are straight.
- Steady your core.
- Keep your back straight and do not swing yourself.
- Pull yourself up, so that your head is over the bar, leaving the bar at your chest.
- Slowly lower your body back to hanging position.
You should also do this same exercise with your hands gripped close together at different distances, to work different muscles. Shoot for about 5 sets of as many proper pull-ups as your strength will allow during each set.
This exercise works your quads and glutes. It will help you with changing direction and help you prevent injuries.
To do a reaching lunge:
- Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart.
- Step far forward with your right leg and shift your weight so that your heel hits the floor.
- Descend until your right shin is vertical and your right thigh is parallel to the floor.
- Lightly tap your left knee to the floor.
- Put your weight back onto your right heel to bring yourself back upright.
- Repeat with your left leg.
When doing these exercises, keep yourself balanced and make sure your knee is bent at a 90º angle does not stick out further than your toe. On each side, also do 3 sets of 15 for this exercise.
T Rotational Pushups
This spin on the traditional pushup offers you a more intense workout. It provides a better core workout, while still hitting the upper body and hip extensors.
To do a T rotational pushup:
- Begin with a rigid torso, in a standing pushup position with your arms and feet shoulder-width apart.
- Descend, bringing yourself chest to the floor.
- Start ascending until your arms are straight.
- Shift over into a side plank position keeping your arms straight.
- Rotate back to push up positions.
- Repeat on the other side
Do 10 reps total, alternating each side, for 3 sets.
Incorporate these dryland swim workouts into your Kerrville Tri training plan so you can be a stronger, more confident swimmer when you hit the water at your next tri.