Racing triathlons in Australia is so fun. This is my fifth visit to the country including two other occasions to race mountain bikes (a World Cup and the World Championships). On this trip, I raced the 2016 IM 70.3 West Sydney, which saw Annabel Luxford take a convincing win.
The event is held at the Olympic Rowing Stadium in Penrith where the 2000 Sydney Games were held. Penrith is a town in the western suburbs of Sydney, Australia near the Blue Mountains. Highlights of the town include a gorgeous walking trail next to the river, a picturesque park filled with mulberry and jacaranda trees, lots of cafes, an outdoor 50m pool, and a bunch of really cool people. Continue reading “Racing Triathlons In Australia”
I went to the 2016 Ironman Miami 70.3 cautiously optimistic and was satisfied by my result. I was sixth in a heavy field with a nearly pain-free run for 21 straight kilometers. For me, this is a huge breakthrough so I am absolutely stoked to know I can finally run the distance. Now, to get faster! ?
This race is so fun. The overall vibe racing with 3000 athletes in downtown Miami in electric. The strong Latin influence makes the race different. Many athletes from South and Central America make the trip so it is an international affair.
A variety of things about this race wouldn’t be my first choice including a pancake flat bike course, three hour time change, and very long travel to get there. Things that turned out to be excellent about this race were the convenience of the hotels downtown to the race site, the incredible organization, and the hordes of fans out cheering. I absolutely LOVED this race and would go back for sure!
It has been 12 weeks to the day since I had my bike accident and broke my ankle. In this 12 week video update, I share a bit about the people that have helped me get back to speed so quickly and kept my attitude in check. Staying positive and engaged in the process of recovery has been the key to getting back in shape quickly.
This injury has helped redefine and motivate my desire to race. I feel like I am among a new generation of athletes who continue to race into their 40s and remain competitive as elites. This isn’t “normal” and there is certainly some resistance to this notion. Although I am more of an outlier at the moment, I don’t think this will always be the case.
I am thankful to have great sponsors and supporters who believe that fast after 40 means REALLY FAST. I love the idea of helping to define what that is and work hard to set the bar as high as possible. I look to my contemporaries, athletes like Jo Pavey and Gunn-Rita Dahle, who are competing as top level elites in their sports (running and mountain biking) to help me decide what level I plan to compete at. The top level.
I am still looking at Kona in 2017.
Looking forward to setting some new benchmarks this season.
Ironman CEO Andrew Messick posed the following question at the San Diego Triathlon Business Conference in January of this year: “Can you figure out a way to position triathlon as their (women’s) next great challenge?” He was suggesting that the goal should be to draw more women from marathon running into Ironman racing. I think he needs to reframe that objective: triathlon shouldn’t be their next challenge, it should be their next opportunity. Triathlon needs to recognize the main barriers to entry for women and offer solutions to address these issues. Then it can be seen as an ideal sport for women from more diverse backgrounds. Continue reading “How Triathlon Can Draw More Women”
A Broken Ankle Doesn’t Have To Prevent Triathlon Improvements
My triathlon cross training the first three weeks after surgery.
Cross training for triathlon with a broken ankle still includes plenty of options if swimming, biking and running are off limits. I discovered there were ways to not only maintain fitness, but also improve, despite my current limitations in a “not weight-bearing” state.
Training injured, in the strictest sense, is NO DIFFERENT than training while healthy. A great training program focuses on all you can do at that moment so, injured or healthy, you focus on doing everything that you can THAT DAY.
Training injured, in the strictest sense, is NO DIFFERENT than training while healthy. A great training program focuses on all you can do at that moment to get better.
When I am healthy, if my legs are super tired from running, I might take a break and ride or swim. If my shoulders are maxed out from a lot of swimming, I might run a bit more and focus strength work on lower body. The key is to focus on what you CAN IMPROVE while your body is in repair mode or fatigued. Even while in the critical stages after ORIF surgery, there were ways for me to train and allow my body to heal.
Indoor training sessions designed to practice race-day triathlon nutrition are a great way to help athletes prepare to execute their plan in races – but in easier, more controlled conditions. The objective of these sessions is to get training benefit from appropriate pacing and to nail your race day hydration and fueling strategy. Although indoor training is missing some of the elements (literally) encountered in outdoor training, there is a lot of valuable information to be gained indoors where the variables are easier to control.
Lab-monitored “sweat tests” are available that can help you determine how much sweat you lose at effort and what the composition of your sweat is. A lab test is the most scientific version of the generalized effort I am going to outline. Knowing the exact composition of your sweat under the lab conditions may be useful but nothing is as valuable as practicing with numerous sessions under a variety of conditions to help gain knowledge on what works best for you. These tips will be a good starting point to gather information on your own body.
After the last race of the season, many athletes enjoy a training break. For anywhere from four to eight weeks, athletes might incorporate complete rest with cross training or unstructured triathlon training. It is a good idea to take a real break from the sport and allow your body to rest.
Some athletes avoid complete rest as they believe it will be very difficult to get back to their previous level of fitness, but this fear is unfounded. Taking a break will result in some detraining but aerobic fitness declines slowly. Underlying fatigue from the previous season is more likely to delay improvement than a break from training. The number one priority after every season must be rest, particularly for athletes who race Ironman and can accumulate a lot of residual fatigue, low grade injury and general overload. The minimum post season break should be four weeks and longer if there is injury to resolve. After that time it is good to get back in action.
Here are five tips to have a strong start to your training build after a break:
Competing at Ironman Arizona in my second attempt racing a full distance Ironman
My second attempt racing a full distance Ironman distance was at Ironman Arizona. I had the privilege of having my ass handed to me by Meredith Kessler after I finished in 9:14, a time that might have been respectable 5 years ago but was in another time zone behind MBK’s 8:44 (the fastest Ironman performance of 2015-so amazing!). It is good I was on the course with her that day. It is invaluable to have that performance to shine a light on where I can improve. Without comparing apples to apples, you never really know where you stack up and I was good in my second attempt but I still need to improve. Continue reading “2015 Ironman Arizona”