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Maximiliano gives some insight into training for his first half distance triathlon

Everyone’s triathlon journey is different. Some want a new challenge. Others like the steadiness of training and the thrill of competition. There are triathletes who want to create a healthier lifestyle for themselves. Sometimes people are overwhelmed and never start. Maximiliano is a Kerrville Tri Ambassador sharing his triathlon journey about what led him to register and train for his first half distance triathlon. It hasn’t been a smooth road for the new father, but he has the support of his family and the triathlon community. His journey is unique, but similar to many other triathletes. Learn about his start, the ups and downs, and what he’s learned along the way. It will all culminate in his first half distance triathlon at Kerrville Tri’s 10th anniversary! Whether it’s your first Rookie Sprint Tri or your 10th half distance, join Maximiliano at The Most Scenic Triathlon in Texas.

A crazy idea

Maximiliano has gone from 255 lbs. (left) to 215 lbs. (right) since his first triathlon.

My name is Maximiliano Ramirez and my first son was born in February 2019. At that time I was in the worst physical shape of my life. I weighed 255 pounds and could not run more than two miles without getting exhausted. Seeing my son for the first time made me realize I had to make some changes to my life. That is when I got the crazy idea of participating in triathlons. With zero experience I bought my first used road bike online and registered for my first triathlon, Rookie Tri. 

As you can imagine, I didn’t have much time to train (less than three months!). I was getting used to life as a father, but still managed to finish the race. But all I needed was that race to get hooked on triathlon. You can say I got the bug! I signed up for two more races that year, Lake Pflugerville Tri (Olympic distance) and Jack’s Genetic Tri. I was really pumped for the 2020 season, but as we all know Covid derailed events and training plans alike. During that time I was happy that I got an extra year to do more research. I learned more about training plans, different equipment, and how to take better care of myself. That gave me the courage to sign up for my first half distance triathlon at the 10th annual Kerrville Tri. 

Continued support

When I made the decision to register for my first half distance triathlon, my wife, without hesitation, gave me her full support. Having her by my side throughout the training process has been incredible. I have researched many training plans and asked many of my friends for tips. I think asking for help is important to do. You never know what you’ll learn! Also, don’t be embarrassed to go out there and try something new, whether it’s new swim equipment or your longest bike ride. 

Maximiliano typically starts his long bike rides at 4:00 a.m.

My current training plan consists of two swimming days (Monday and Friday). That gives my legs time to recover before and after long weekend rides/runs. During the week I alternate between short runs and rides during my lunch break. Depending on how hectic my days are, there might be a day or two where I work out at night. 

Tips to make training work

Like many other triathletes with families, work, and a busy life, finding time to train can be difficult. But really all you have to do is adjust your routine and schedule. For example, on my long rides, I typically go to sleep early so I can wake up around 4:00 a.m. This allows me to be out the door no later than 5:00 a.m. Making minor adjustments helps me balance training for my first half distance triathlon and everything else in my life.

In addition to the actual training plan, nutrition and hydration are just as important. Make sure to hydrate, especially with electrolytes, when training is demanding. I still consider myself a new triathlete and I’ve tried many products. Nothing has worked like I want just yet and I’ll continue to research and experiment until I find what works best for me. But just like training and certain workouts, you have to experiment with nutrition and hydration to discover what’s best for you.

I hope my experiences help others who want to register for a triathlon, but are nervous about jumping into something new. Just remember that anything is possible. You have to put in the work, but you should also be confident that you can achieve it. It will take time to get in a rhythm, but once you do it becomes second nature. Then you’ll graduate from sprint triathlons to your first half distance triathlon! I encourage everyone to join me at the 10th annual Kerrville Triathlon Festival. They have distances for triathletes of all abilities.

Grow as a swimmer when you transition from the pool to open water

The thought of swimming in open water can cause anxiety and feel overwhelming if you’re used to the clear waters of a pool. But don’t worry! It’s not as daunting as it seems. Transitioning from the pool to open water can be done easily by following some helpful tips. For example, if you want to become comfortable or more comfortable with open-water swimming, then you should swim in open water more often. Good news, all of our tips but one can be done in the pool! Start today and before you know it you’ll become more comfortable with taking your swim from the pool to open water. Pro tip: build your endurance in the open water with this Zone3 swim gear.

6 ways to become more comfortable

1) Keep your eyes closed

Close your eyes for a few strokes so you don’t focus on the line.

While swimming in the pool, keep your eyes closed for several strokes while your head faces down in the water. Increase the number of strokes as you become more comfortable. This will help you get a feel for swimming straight without needing to use the black line at the bottom of the pool as a reference.

2) Challenge yourself

This doesn’t have to be overwhelming, but there are a couple of different ways you can challenge yourself in the pool. First, try swimming in a pool that’s longer in length than what you currently train in. This will help build your stamina and get you used to swimming longer distances without stopping.

If you can’t access a longer pool, try moving your workout to earlier in the morning before the sunrises. This is beneficial if the pool isn’t lit and is similar to swimming with your eyes closed. Swimming when it’s darker outside can make it tougher to see. This provides an environment similar to what you’ll experience in open water.

3) Practice sighting

Get comfortable with sighting when you practice in the pool.

Sighting means you focus on something far away while swimming in open water. Focusing on that helps keep you from veering off course and swimming more than you have to. To practice sighting, you need to synchronize looking ahead with your stroke and breathing. Look at a target at the end of the lane, swim for two strokes, look at your target, repeat. This will help you become more comfortable with sighting in open water and keep you on course. Don’t swim extra if you don’t have to!

4) Learn to be efficient

In order to be an efficient swimmer, you need to reduce your stroke count for each lap. Sighting will help you become more efficient too. It takes fewer strokes and less energy if you swim in a straight line versus zig-zagging in the water. Taking in the right amount of oxygen when you breathe can help you become more efficient too. Keep your form the same as often as you can so you don’t over-extend yourself and feel like you have to play catch up.

5) Wear your wetsuit

Focus on your form and breathing in the pool to become more efficient.

If you plan to wear a wetsuit during your event, you need to become familiar with it before race day. If you do this in the pool, know that chlorine can be harmful to your wetsuit. Wearing it before your race allows you to gauge the buoyancy of the wetsuit and its impact on your form and stroke. Learn about the pros and cons of wearing a wetsuit before you purchase one.

6) Swim in open water

This would be a great time to get familiar with your wetsuit! Find a lake or other body of water to practice swimming in open water. Doing this before race day will help you prepare for what you’ll experience. This is where all the work you’ve done in the pool gets used. You won’t have a black line to guide you, so sighting will be imperative so you can swim efficiently. 

This advice will be beneficial in helping you transition from the pool to open water. As you practice in the pool, find what works for you and stick with it. Repetition in the pool is what will help you when you transition from the pool to open water. Ask other triathletes for their tips and advice, like advice on the best multisport watches. Who knows, the insight they provide might be useful for you.

Free, personalized finish line video stems from expanded partnership with FinisherPix

The Kerrville Triathlon Festival will provide a free, personalized finish line video for all participants as part of its 10th anniversary on September 25-26. This video, valued at $19, will be added to a list of perks that are already in place for the event. Participants receive limited-edition 10th-anniversary swim floats, tri-blend shirts, reusable water bottles, belt buckle finisher medals, personalized race bibs, Zone 3 silicone swim caps, and a post-race meal. 

The popular destination triathlon, known for its scenic views and fun atmosphere, is expecting record numbers that could see the event sell out. Participants are encouraged to register before the next price increase on Wednesday, August 4th, at 11:59 p.m. CST. 

“Participants are ready to make new memories and we know they’ll love their free, personalized finish line video,” said Stacy Keese, co-owner of High Five Events. “We’re so excited to celebrate 10 years of this event and watch it continue to grow as a bucket list triathlon for both beginners and experienced athletes!” 

10 years of swimming, biking, and running

The free, personalized finish line video will be produced by FinisherPix. It’ll include highlights of participants crossing the finish line and commemorative 10th-anniversary designs and footage. Additional FinisherPix photo packages can be purchased at a discounted rate during the registration process

“Crossing the Kerrville Tri finish line is a memorable experience and this is a great way for participants to share this moment with friends and family,” said Robbie Little, Vice President, Event Services at Outside.

Kerrville Tri offers distances and events for triathletes of all levels and abilities. The Rookie Sprint distance, aquabike, relay, and kids fun run take place on Saturday, September 25th. Quarter distance, quarter aquabike, half distance, half aquabike, and half relay will all happen on Sunday, September 26th. Participants can pick up their packet at the Kerrville Triathlon Expo, which is free and open to the public. It’ll take place on September 24-25 at Inn of the Hills Hotels.

Kerrville Tri, known as The Most Scenic Triathlon in Texas, features a swim course in Nimitz Lake, bike course through the Texas Hill Country, and run course along the Guadalupe River. Participants can also enjoy floating in the Guadalupe river after the race as part of the post-race festival. Kerrville Tri is a USAT-sanction event, provides professional timing, and offers professional photography. A great volunteer crew, hundreds of supportive spectators, and an energetic finish line festival make race weekend memorable for everyone involved. 

Partnership names Zone3 USA the Official Triathlon and Swim Gear

High Five Events, one of the largest privately owned event production companies in the United States, announces a two-year agreement with Zone3 USA. The partnership makes Zone3 USA the Official Triathlon and Swim Gear of CapTex Triathlon presented by Life Time and Kerrville Triathlon Festival.

“We can’t wait to be back to racing and spending time with the endurance sports community,” said Ryan Dolan, President of Zone3 USA. “High Five Events has produced high-quality, community-based events for a long time and we’re excited to partner with them for CapTex Tri and Kerrville Triathlon.”

Zone3’s involvement

Zone3 USA, one of the most loved and chosen specialist sport brands around the world, is headquartered in Boulder, Colorado. The partnership means all participants will receive Zone3’s silicone swim caps that are long-lasting and eco-friendly. They will also host product demos at both expos and provide triathlon insight for blogs and social media.

“Zone3 is one of the most recognized brands in the world and this partnership will continue to elevate the profiles of CapTex and Kerrville Tri,” said Jack Murray, co-owner of High Five Events. “What really impressed us in our initial conversations with Zone3 was the depth and quality of their product line and their commitment to building a relationship with our endurance community.”

CapTex Tri will take place on Memorial Day, Monday, May 31st, in downtown Austin. Kerrville Triathlon will celebrate its 10th anniversary on September 25-26th, in Kerrville, Texas.