Boost your triathlon game with these dynamic core exercises! From planks to mountain climbers, power up your core for enhanced stability, balance, and endurance. Dive into the journey of a stronger you!
Tag Archive for: triathlon training
Kerrville, Texas, boasts a delectable culinary landscape that caters to all tastes and cravings. Indulge in a cozy and charming meal at Bridget’s Basket or savor the fine dining experience at Pinnacle Grill. For a true taste of the region, Hill Country Cafe offers comfort food with a local twist.
“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.
If you bought a 50-year-old Porsche 911 everyone would say you bought a classic car, but when athletes turn 50 people tend to think they become junk heaps.
The athletes themselves know that training at 50+ can be just as rewarding and fun as racing when you are younger and stronger. It just takes a different focus, and your training needs to be modified, to fit your older and more worn body.
Specificity, strength, speed, and rest become the most important part of maintaining a racing lifestyle for an athlete over 50.
Specificity is training to fit your racing. It makes no sense to ride 100 miles if you are training for a 10-mile Sprint Tri, or swim 7 days a week when your swim is 500 yards. Your training needs to be focused to fit your goals and the races you choose. If your races are long, then long, slow miles are in order whereas shorter races will call for more intense workouts of shorter duration. Your body can usually handle intensity OR distance but not usually both at the same time.
Every triathlete should be doing 2-3 days of strength training a week. Triathlon has your body using muscles in a very limited range of motion for long periods of time. Strength training can keep your muscles balanced and help prevent injury. No need to focus on the physique of The Rock. Your strength training should be lower weight and higher reps. Leave the high weight and low reps to the muscle-bound mirror watchers at the gym.
Speed is often forgotten as athletes age. They tend to do lots of “Junk Miles” meaning they slog through a slow 20 mile ride or shuffle 10 miles on the run. Those can be helpful on easy days, but on the hard days, you need to bring intensity. Go to the track on your hard days and push your speed. Do some hard and fast 100’s in the pool, or try out fins. You only increase your speed by doing the activity at a higher pace. Keep in mind that your body cannot handle the same intensity as the younger athletes. Don’t try and keep up with the 30-year-olds at the track.
Rest is the most underrated training tool that triathletes have yet it holds so much power. Getting to a workout after a miserable night’s sleep and then pushing yourself is a recipe for injury and no fun. You should try to get 7-8 hours of good solid sleep every night. If you get up at 4:30, to meet your running group, you need to be in bed by 9:00 or even 8:30. You can train yourself to go to be early. Getting your body to adjust to an early bedtime is just like any other training you do.
Racing and training over 50 can be incredibly rewarding. When you pass another 50+ athlete you always get a “hey” or head nod. They know what you are doing to still be active, and fast, and they appreciate it. It’s like joining a Porsche Club for classic cars only you have joined the club of Athletes Over 50. These club benefits are the most rewarding you will find.
Persistence can be your secret weapon.
Author Bio: Steve Mallett has been racing triathlons since 1984 and has completed over 120 races. He has completed many 50 mile running races and in 2019 completed the Rim to Rim to Rim in the Grand Canyon. He loves training with new and veteran athletes. Steve has the nickname Realtor Runner, is a former USA Triathlon coach, a Kerrville Triathlon Ambassador, and is a member of Team Zoot.
During training, you don’t have the luxury of aid stations like you do on race day. As if you needed another reason to love race day, hydration on course has always been a fan favorite. However, during training runs it is critical to stay properly hydrated. Make sure you carry hydration with you on your runs. If you’ve just started training make sure you follow these tips to keep your training running smoothly.
Try one of the options below to carry hydration on your next run. There are links below where you can order these items or you can visit our friends at Fleet Feet Austin!
Using a handheld bottle on the run is an easy start to carrying hydration with you on your run. There are options to have a hard bottle or soft flask handheld. The harder bottle retains its shape and usually has more insulation. The soft flask is lighter and has the option to fit in a pocket when empty. The main con to a handheld is that one of your hands will be occupied by physically holding onto the bottle as you run.
Pro tip: It is a good idea to switch up which hand is holding the bottle during your run.
Water Vest or Backpack
Needing to carry more water than what can fit in a handheld, or would like your hands to be free? A water vest or backpack is a great option. The weight of the water vest/ pack is distributed more evenly through the torso, which allows for a more symmetrical weight distribution while running. These options also have extra storage to include nutrition or your phone during your run.
When deciding between a vest or a backpack think of how you want it to fit and where you want your water storage at.
- A hugging fit. It keeps things close to your body for a tighter fit that reduces bounce.
- Bottles in the front pockets and option for hydration bladder in the back.
- Fit is more relaxed.
- Bigger hydration bladder capacity. Some have options for a bottle in the front
Pro tip: Always be conscious of how a vest/pack rubs on the inside of your arms and neck/shoulder areas. Any bit of uncomfortable chafing will be multiplied by sweat and miles, so choose wisely. Try Body Glide anti-chafing cream!
Water Bottle Waist Belt
If you want your hands free and don’t like the idea of carrying more weight through your torso a waist belt is worth a try. We like SPIbelt’s Distance Pro because the two, 8-ounce bottles can be placed anywhere on the elastic, allowing runners to maximize comfort. This running belt is built for durability and can keep up with your longest runs.
The belt pocket expands to hold larger smartphones, including the iPhone12 Pro Max, and Galaxy S20 Ultra, as well as keys, ID, and more. The elastic on this belt is 1.5″ wide, 50% broader than the Original SPIbelt.
Everyone’s preference is personal to what feels best for them to carry hydration. Test out what works best for you.
Biggest pro tip of all: Stay hydrated and have some fun!
One of the first decisions you’ll need to make when doing a triathlon is what type of suit to wear. Do you go for a one-piece or two-piece? There are pros and cons to both options, so it’s important to weigh up all the factors before making your decision. In this blog post, we’ll take a look at some of the key differences between one-piece and two-piece suits, as well as the advantages and disadvantages of each option. So read on if you want to find out more!
What is a Tri Suit?
A tri suit is a garment designed specifically for triathletes to be worn during the swim, bike, and run. They are made of a swimsuit-like material that dries quickly during your transition to the bike. They also make riding more comfortable with built-in pads that you won’t even notice during the run. It usually has built-in pockets so that you can carry some nutrition with you as well.
Most importantly, the suit allows for a total range of movement so you can wear the suit for the entire tri. A tri suit is an element of the basic triathlon gear you need, so keep reading to understand the differences between a one-piece and two-piece tri suit.
Two-Piece Tri Suit
For example, a two-piece is less likely to restrict your range of motion from being too tight on your shoulders and allow for natural movement. The two-piece suit also tends to feel cooler than a one-piece, due to the fact your mid-drift can be exposed.
A two-piece suit is also great for athletes who may require different-sized clothing for the upper and lower parts of their body. You can also usually find more options for the length of shorts. For women, you can find inseams from anywhere from 5 inch to 8 inch. Many prefer a shorter short length for short distances or training while a longer length can help prevent chaffing on longer distances.
One drawback is the two-piece can be less aerodynamic during the bike portion if the suit bunches up. Leaning too far forward on your bike can also cause the back of your tri top to rise up and lead to exposed skin. This is not ideal to protect your skin if you were to fall on the bike course or raise the risk of getting a sunburn.
One-piece tri suits are more commonly preferred by most athletes for simplicity. A one-piece suit typically has some compression built-in, making the suit more aerodynamic for athletes who opt for a one-piece. Athletes also say there’s less chafing with a one-piece because there are fewer seams in the suit.
Many prefer a one-piece because you don’t have to worry about your shirt riding up or your shorts moving down exposing your mid-drift. Less shifting around = more time saved and a more comfortable experience.
Lastly, a one-piece suit is a better option if you will be wearing a wet suit during your race again because you don’t have to worry about anything moving where it shouldn’t when you go to peel off your wetsuit.
One drawback of a one-piece suit is the material the suit is made of can cause you to feel warmer throughout the race. This is important to take this into account depending on which tri distance you complete and what time of year your race takes place. You can look for a one piece that has a zipper for venting if needed. The other drawback is that you have to find a suit that works with your torso length, finding your “dream” suit can take longer with more trial and error.
At the end of the day, comfort is most important when choosing the best tri suit for you, if you decide to wear one at all. Hopefully, now you have the knowledge and tools you need to get yourself the perfect suit for your upcoming tri!
Adjusting your bike to the perfect saddle height is crucial in order to maximize comfort and payoff during your training rides for Kerrville Tri. Incorrect height leads to pain and discomfort during and after your ride. It can also prevent you from improving your performance on the bike. Learn the importance of correct saddle height, and how to adjust your bike to the perfect fit with these easy steps.
What is Saddle Height?
Saddle height is measured by the distance between the center of the pedal axle and the top of the saddle, or your bike seat. This is set by adjusting the seat post to your ideal height to balance your comfort and power on the bike. This height is arguably the single most important adjustment on your bicycle. Incorrect height can contribute to discomfort in the saddle, anterior and posterior knee pains, and ultimately limit how much power you produce.
How To Adjust Your Saddle Height
There are many ways you can approach finding your perfect saddle height. One of the best approaches is to establish it based on the rider’s individual ride characteristics and flexibility. You can follow the “heel to pedal method” before your next ride. This will get you in the ballpark.
- Stand next to your bike and raise the saddle to your hip to get an idea of where to start.
- Get on your bike, and place your heel on the pedal to determine if you will raise or lower your saddle.
- If you are having trouble making contact with your heel to your pedal – the seat is too high.
- If your knee is bent – it is too low.
- Put your bike on the trainer and adjust accordingly.
- Get back on your bike with your heel on the pedal and pedal backward to reach the six o’clock position.
- Your leg should be completely straight, without being overextended to achieve the correct saddle height.
Pro tip: Make very small adjustments during this process, then repeat until you have found the perfect height.
Ready to Ride
Once you find the proper height, use a piece of electrical tape around at the base of the post where it meets the seat clamp as a marker. Take a tape measure and record the measurements, in case you need to make very slight adjustments in the future.
Have a professional look at your bike every few years to achieve maximum comfort. After adjusting your bike to the perfect saddle height, make the first few rides short. Give it time! Your body may need a few sessions to adapt to your new height before you feel yourself improving on your cycling journey. How often do you check your saddle height? Let us know on Facebook and Twitter.
Learn what causes skipping chains and what you can do about it
There are two main causes for skipping chains. The most common cause is the misalignment of the rear cogs and the chain itself. The second most common cause of skipping chains is wearing on the chain, cassette, and/or the chainrings. Read below to see what causes each and how you can prevent chain skipping and extend the life of your bike.
There are several things that can cause the misalignment of the rear cogs and the chain.
- Improper cable tension. When the tension is incorrect the chain does not sit in line with the corresponding cassette cog and is trying to jump to the next cog.
- Dirty cable. The dirt prevents the cable from moving like it needs to.
- Slightly bent hanger for the rear derailleur. Can affect the alignment.
Skipping chains will wear on the chain, cassette, and/or the chainrings. The chain is the most likely to wear out first since it is made entirely of small, moving parts. Those parts tend to wear out faster when they are dirty or ridden dry. Chains on most modern drivetrains usually last anywhere from 1500 to 2000 miles. This can change depending on your riding style and how well you maintain your bike. If you keep your drivetrain clean and you tend to spin at a slightly higher cadence then you will get more mileage out of your chain. Follow these six steps to clean your drivetrain.
When the chain wears, it no longer sits evenly on the cassette cogs and chainrings. As this goes on the chain will eventually start to jump since the chain wears much faster than the cassette and chainrings. If you let your chain go too long it will start to wear down the teeth of the cassette first and then the chainrings. If the chain is replaced before it is too worn the cassette and chainrings will outlast the chain many times over. You’d much rather want to replace your chain than the cassette and chainrings.
Pro tip: Use this bike tool to measure chain wear at home.
Learn the benefits and safety tips of swimming in cold water
Swimming in cold water is an exhilarating experience. It’s a fantastic way to get fit, unwind, and strengthen both your mind and body. Swimming laps in chilly water can wake you up and make you feel alive in a way that no warm swimming pool can. For triathletes, cold, open water swimming is a vital part of training. It can provide you with more space and fewer swimmers since everyone won’t flock to the cold swimming areas. Learn why taking an icy dip can be good for you and how to accomplish it safely.
Benefits of Swimming in Cold Water
Increased stress tolerance
Swimming in cold water is scientifically documented to improve psychological markers of stress tolerance. The shock and adaptation you experience make your body thrive under stress in the long run, not just tolerate it. Swimming in cold water increases the adaption even more. Just like any other physical activity, it’s an excellent method to relieve stress.
Coldwater imposes vasoconstriction on your blood vessels, followed by a period of compensatory vasodilation. This forces your body to warm your core when you enter the cold water. It then creates a dilation when blood rushes to your extremities to warm them up again. This process of alternation between constriction and dilation dramatically improves overall circulation.
Superior calorie burn
Swimming against cold waters forces your body to thermoregulate more than usual while you focus your mind and body on the difficult task of swimming. It also improves fat metabolization which makes you leaner and healthier in the long run. Swimming is considered a complete workout because you’re using every part of your body.
Follow These Safety Tips
Gradually immerse yourself in the chilly waters to begin. You can practice at home by slowly increasing the amount of cold water in your shower. It will be difficult to control your breathing initially, but continued training can reduce the amount of time you need to adjust to the cold. When building workouts, begin with shorter distances. This allows your body to acclimate to the temperature and adjust your breathing technique. Lastly, explore these helpful tips for taking your swim from the pool to the open water.
Don’t swim alone
Find your local swimming groups and participate in group swims. Swim partners can provide valuable feedback on your swim style, your kick, and your breathing that can lead to improvements. Partner swimming also provides an extra pair of eyes in case something goes wrong. And, don’t forget about the accountability factor. Knowing your friend or group is meeting you for a workout increases the likelihood that you show up too.
Wear a wetsuit
A wetsuit retains body heat and allows you to focus on the mechanical aspects of swimming first. It also helps to minimize the impact of cold water. You can then focus on your form, sighting, kicking, and breathing in the water. You could eventually graduate to wearing wetsuit shorts.
What You Need to Get Started
- gym bag to carry all your gear
- swim goggles
- extra clothes for after your swim
Swimming in cold water is possibly one of the most challenging feats a triathlete can face. It can be intimidating and difficult, but engaging in a gradually increasing training regimen with small increments can work wonders. Stay safe with our advice and practice often. Eventually swimming in cold water won’t even bother you.