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Follow our advice to get better at hydrating while cycling

If you’re new to cycling, one of the challenges to get accustomed to is knowing how to drink water while peddling. Just as there is skill needed to balance, ride curves, and pump uphills, technique is needed to hydrate without losing your balance and falling off your bike. Here are some tips for hydrating while cycling.

Use a squirt-top bottle instead of a cap bottle

A water bottle with a cap requires you to twist it open, which is cumbersome to do with one hand on a bike. When it comes to squirt-top bottles, you can simply use your teeth to open the valve and start drinking with one hand as you control your bike with the other. The convenience a squirt-top bottle offers during cycling allows you to focus on the course more and avoid any accident.

Make use of the bottle cage on your bike

To carry water on the road, you can use a bottle cage on your bike. The bottle cage can be installed between the bars, on the frame, or near the saddle to help you reach your drink with zero fuss. Here are the pros and cons of each bottle cage.

Aero Bottle Cage

This type of cage is designed so that it can be attached to multiple parts of the bike frame. Most other cages can only be mounted to the frame.

Pros
– easiest to access
– option to install it either vertical or horizontal
– using horizontal bottles at the front can decrease aerodynamic drag

Cons
– poor aerodynamics compared to other cages
– using vertical bottles can cause even higher aerodynamic drag.

Bike Frame Cage

These are very common bottle holders that can be placed on the frame, seat post, or handlebars.

Pros
– slim aero bottles on the down tube are less affected by drag and side wind.

Cons
– intermediate aerodynamic drag
– large frame-mounted bottles are expensive and difficult to clean.

Rear Hydration System

This is an aerodynamic bottle that is mounted behind the seat post. These are more so used by competitive triathletes partaking in very long distances.

Pros
– best choice in terms of aerodynamics
– least affected by side wind

Cons
– requires a cage with a strong grip to prevent bottle-launching
– must be made of a favorable material to oppose side sway

Take advantage of the straight-aways

Think about when the ideal time to take a sip is and be ready to do so. Trying to pull the water bottle out on curves is much more challenging, so wait until the trail is flat and straight to get your drink.

Practice, Practice, Practice

Ride up and down your street over and over and practice. Pull your water bottle out of the cage, take a sip, then put it back while moving forward. Start off slow and pick up speed as you get more comfortable.

Pro Tip: Avoid quenching your thirst in one go

Kerrville TriathlonExerting your body through exercise causes dehydration which makes you thirsty. Despite your desire to rapidly quench your thirst it’s important to not drink too much. It can be counterproductive and negatively affect your performance. It is best to avoid drinking mouthfuls and only take a few sips occasionally. You can hydrate yourself effectively without running the risk of drinking too much.

To make sure you do not run yourself dry, you should consume around 600-900 ml of water, per hour, during a triathlon, in addition to other nutritional needs. Although triathlons will have water available in transition and on the run course, not all triathlons provide an aid station on the bike course. Make sure the water bottle(s) on your bike are full so you don’t run out of water.

Hydrating while cycling can be tricky if you’re not used to it. With a secure bottle cage and lots of practice, you’ll be able to master this skill in no time.

Nutrition Guide for Every Tri Distance

Besides the difference of length, short and long-distance triathlons are also different in the impact they have on athletes’ nutritional needs. Learning how to fuel appropriately can make a massive difference in the experience you will have during your training journey and on race day. Keep reading our nutrition guide with tips for every triathlon distance you can use while you train and compete for your next triathlon. With nutrition, it is super important to not try anything new on race day since you don’t know how your body will react to it.

Sprint and Quarter

These are shorter distances where, in many cases, athletes can race without having to consume additional fueling, besides water.

Carbohydrates are Your Friend

ROCTANE Energy Gels.GU Energy

GU is our go-to when it comes to energy gels

However, if you are consuming calories during these events where you are performing at a higher intensity, it is helpful if those calories come from carbohydrates, as they will be easier for your body to utilize. Recommendations range between 30 to 45 grams of simple carbohydrates per each hour you are racing. Here is where gels, chews, and sports drinks come in handy. For example, energy gels usually have about 23g of carbohydrates, while chews contain around 25g per 6 pieces. With sports drinks, it is essential to choose drinks that are not low in sugar, to get over 20g of carbohydrates per 12 oz. These recommendations also apply during high-intensity training sessions.

Pre-Race Nutrition

Another factor to take into consideration is what you eat before the race. With this, there is no single formula or a recommendation that fits everyone. It’s best to find what works for you. A general rule to follow is to eat things that are easy to digest, such as plain waffles or toast. We recommend avoiding more complex foods like oatmeal, as they might be harder for your body to process. However, what matters is that you are eating something that makes you feel good.

Half Distance

The half distance is an event where you will undoubtedly be consuming additional fuel. Longer distances focus more on endurance rather than speed, so your nutritional needs are going to be different.

Nutrition During the Race

Some people have no problem consuming only gels or chews during longer events. But it’s common for athletes racing for longer periods to eat more complex foods. While you should still aim for 30 to 60 grams of carbohydrates per hour, it’s beneficial to get those from other sources besides just simple sugars. Things like granola bars can be very helpful for providing sustained energy without the sugar rush. They allow a steady utilization of fuel since they contain a mix of carbohydrates, protein, and fat. This can also help reduce stomach discomfort.

It is crucial to pay attention to your electrolyte intake. Especially when racing in the heat, because high amounts of electrolytes are lost with of sweat. Consuming electrolyte drinks, such as Nuun, is the easiest way to prevent dehydration.

Training Nutrition Plan

Your Nutrition Guide for Every Triathlon Distance

The main nutritional difference between short and long-distance triathlon training is the number of calories needed per day. Regardless of what you’re training for, it is essential for you to focus on recovery. Especially if you are used to having multiple workouts within a 24-hour time frame. Make sure to have meals of snacks that contain carbohydrates and protein after your workouts. This will ensure that your body can replenish the nutrients lost during training. Examples for recovery meals can be as simple as chocolate milk, a PB&J or a turkey sandwich or some cheese and crackers. Fruit with your favorite nut butter is also a good alternative. This will help you recover better for your next training session, and help you avoid burnout or injuries in the long-term.

With the help of this triathlon nutrition guide, you’ll be ready to rock whatever distance you choose to complete on the Kerrville Tri course.

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.

Plan Ahead

Look for buoys or landmarks to help you sight while on the swim course

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!

Tips for Sighting in Open Water

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 merrierThe more the merrier when you create a relay team

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!

Making memories at Kerrville Tri with your relay team membersMaking memories

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!

Knowing the rules of the road is crucial to keep you and the rest of your squad safe

Follow these rules of the road every time you ride and to stay safe during your training for your upcoming triathlon!

9 must-know safety tips for your next ride

Stay safe during your training rides by knowing the rules of the road. Whether you’re riding to lunch with co-workers around the block or completing a long training ride for Kerrville Triathlon Festival, the following group riding guidelines will come in handy. Knowing these rules of the road will also make the ride more enjoyable and safer for everyone involved. Memorize these 9 Rules of the Road to cover your butt and keep you safe. 

Cycling Rules of the Road for your upcoming ride

  1. Complete a quick, pre-ride safety check.
  2. Obey all traffic laws. Here are a few examples: Yield to pedestrians, use the bike lane, use hand signals, and watch out for traffic lights! Just like in a car, the same rules apply when riding a bike.  Do not run red lights!
  3. Operate bike in such a manner as to not offend or endanger motorists, pedestrians, etc.
  4. Wear a helmet for safety (and be a good model for children).
  5. Activate all lights on bikes.
  6. Wear reflective gear that makes the group more visible, even in the daytime.
  7. Ride single file when you’re with others except in areas where it is safe to ride side-by-side.
  8. Avoid slowing down abruptly or making any other sudden moves.
  9. Ask experienced riders questions when you’re not sure what is occurring.

Important hand signals

On your left! You’ve probably experienced fellow cyclists shouting at you in efforts to get your attention on the road. But, hand signals, instead of words, are used to warn riders of potential danger on the roadway. Especially when riding in a pack, the only cyclist who has enough visual warning is the front cyclist. Therefore, it is the responsibility of the lead rider to warn the cyclists behind them. If the lead cyclist (or the cyclist in front of you):

  • shakes their hand to the right = there’s a pothole, branch, or some obstacle to the right
  • shakes their hand to the left = there’s an obstacle to the left
  • puts hand behind their posterior = follow right behind them as there might be obstacles on both sides
  • puts right hand down with the flat of the hand facing you = lead cyclist is slowing down or coming to a stop

It’s crucial to know these hand signals to keep yourself safe when riding alone to avoid a collision with another cyclist. Last but not least, being aware of your surroundings is essential to keep yourself safe during a ride. Be on the lookout and apply these rules of the road to keep yourself safe next time you go for a ride.

Let your troubles drift away with these quotes about life that are bound to boost your mood

As much as we may hate to admit it, we’ve all been in a funk where it’s difficult to feel inspired to keep going. With many daily obstacles to face, from stress at work to family, love, and overall success, it can be hard to find a balance. There comes a time when we all need a little extra boost of positivity to get back in the right mindset. That’s exactly what you’re gonna find with these mood-boosting quotes about life.

Life is full of unexpected twists and turns. Jot down a few of your favorite uplifting quotes or sayings for the next time you’re feeling down and need a quick pick-me-up! It’ll give you the perfect boost to get you back on track to achieving your goals. Pro Tip: These are also great quotes if you’ve hit a lull in your tri journey and need some motivation to get ready for some Kerrville Tri training. 

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!

Chasing Excellence

Chasing ExcellenceThis 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 Ultimate Health

The Ultimate HealthThe 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!

The Fat-Burning Man Show

Fat Burning Man ShowBurning 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.

Work Play Love

Work Play LoveMarried 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.

The Rich Roll

The Rich RollThis 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.

Burpees

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.

  1. Start standing with your feet shoulder-width apart.
  2. Lower yourself into a squatting position and place your hands on the floor in front of you.
  3. Jump your feet back, putting yourself into a pushup position.
  4. Do a pushup.
  5. Jump your feet back into their original position.
  6. Stand yourself upright, jump into the air, and clap your hands over your head.

Repeat this exercise in 3 sets of 15.

Lat Pulldown

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:

  1. Sit down at a pulldown machine and place your hands wide apart on the bar, palms facing forward.
  2. Bring the bar down straight down to your clavicle.
  3. Keep your torso still as you pull your arms down.
  4. Draw your shoulders back, pulling the bar down as you exhale.
  5. When the bar touches your clavicle and your shoulder blades are completely contracted, count to 2.
  6. 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

Pull-ups

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:

  1. Move your arms shoulder-width apart and grasp an overhead bar with a firm, overhand grip.
  2. Hang so your arms and legs are straight.
  3. Steady your core.
  4. Keep your back straight and do not swing yourself.
  5. Pull yourself up, so that your head is over the bar, leaving the bar at your chest.
  6. 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.

Reaching Lunges

This exercise works your quads and glutes. It will help you with changing direction and help you prevent injuries.

To do a reaching lunge:

  1. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart.
  2. Step far forward with your right leg and shift your weight so that your heel hits the floor.
  3. Descend until your right shin is vertical and your right thigh is parallel to the floor.
  4. Lightly tap your left knee to the floor.
  5. Put your weight back onto your right heel to bring yourself back upright.
  6. 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:

  1. Begin with a rigid torso, in a standing pushup position with your arms and feet shoulder-width apart.
  2. Descend, bringing yourself chest to the floor.
  3. Start ascending until your arms are straight.
  4. Shift over into a side plank position keeping your arms straight.
  5. Rotate back to push up positions.
  6. 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.

Showing off those muscles, and getting pumped up for the swim!

Loving every moment of Kerrville Tri throughout the years is easy, choosing our top 10 favorite photos was the tough part!

We have celebrated 9 Kerrville Triathlon Festivals over the years and have loved every second of it! From the scenic views of the Texas Hill Country to the pure enjoyment we see from our participants, volunteers, and spectators, we wanted to take a moment to share our top 10 favorite photos from Kerrville Tri.

  • You can count on our mascot, Buck, to congratulate you at the finish line festival!

  • Who wouldn’t love riding beneath this incredible blue sky?

  • Kerrville Tri participants eagerly waiting to dive into Nimitz Lake!

  • Killin’ it on the bike course!

  • Nerves or excitement? We think both!

  • Spectators showing love to all athletes is what we like to see!

  • Can’t rain on this parade!

  • Look at that form!

  • Team Radioactive is always bringing the fun energy to Kerrville Tri!

  • With a view like this, you’ll love every second you spend on the Kerrville Tri course.

Don’t let your tri training mess up your do! Here are some quick tips to protect and prevent damage to your hair during your swim training

Chlorine is very damaging to your hair because it strips your hair of its natural oils, making it easier for your hair to become dry and break off or split at the ends. Keep your hairdo looking brand new for as long as possible when you use these tips to prevent damage to your hair during your training for Kerrville Tri!

Before

1. Wet Your Hair

Wetting your hair before you get in the pool will minimize the amount of chlorine and other chemicals your hair will absorb. 

2. Protect Your Hair

Take it a step further by putting a protectant in your hair before you hop in the pool! Putting a protectant, such as coconut oil, on before prevents your hair from soaking up the chemicals in the water, while also moisturizing your hair.

3. Wear a Swim Cap

Wearing a swim cap during your swim training is the best way to prevent chlorine from soaking into your hair. This method to prevent hair damage is very effective and it’s reusable and inexpensive.

4. Style Your Hair

If a swim cap isn’t for you, find a quick and easy way to style your hair before your workouts, such as a braid or bun, to keep your hair from getting tangled in the pool.

Your hair is bound to get some exposure to the chlorine. Follow these steps to prevent further damage to your hair after your pool session.

After

1. Rinse Immediately

After getting out of the pool, you’ll want to rinse your hair right away. You don’t have to give your hair a full wash, but it’s crucial to rinse the pool water from your hair to stop any future damage from happening. 

2. Comb Gently

Your hair will most likely be tangly from your swim. Be sure to brush your hair gently to prevent the ends from breaking off! Use a leave-in conditioner or detangling spray if you need to. 

3. Deep Condition

You will want to put a clarifying, deep conditioner in your hair once a week, or every 4 to 5 workouts, depending on how often you hit the pool. This will get rid of any hidden chlorine deposits throughout the hair to keep your hair looking healthy for as long as possible. 

We often forget or don’t think about how damaging chlorine really is during all the pool training that leads up to your tri. Protect your hair and save yourself some money when you use these tips to protect your hair during your swim training while preparing for your upcoming tri!