Triathlete Europe http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com Europe's leading source for triathlon news and information. Wed, 29 Jun 2016 14:00:16 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.3.1 2016 Ironman European Championship Pro Start List http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/06/29/2016-ironman-european-championship-pro-start-list http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/06/29/2016-ironman-european-championship-pro-start-list#comments Wed, 29 Jun 2016 14:00:16 +0000 http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/?p=56923

Ironman Frankfurt - 2015
European Championship

2016 70.3 and Ironman world champion Daniela Ryf (SUI) returns to Frankfurt, Germany this weekend to defend her Ironman European

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Ironman Frankfurt - 2015 European Championship

Ironman Frankfurt - 2015 European Championship

Ironman Frankfurt – 2015
European Championship

2016 70.3 and Ironman world champion Daniela Ryf (SUI) returns to Frankfurt, Germany this weekend to defend her Ironman European Championship title. On the men’s side, 2014 Ironman world champion (and two-time 70.3 world champion) Sebastian Kienle (GER) highlights the start list with last year’s winner Jan Frodeno (GER) choosing to compete at the following weekend’s Challenge Roth event instead.

See the professional start list below and check back for a complete preview.

Women
1 Daniela Ryf (SUI)
4 Kristin Moeller (GER)
5 Natascha Schmitt (GER)
6 Daniela Saemmler (GER)
7 Evi Neuscheler (GER)
8 Diana Riesler (GER)
9 Celia Kuch (GER)
10 Saleta Castro Noqueria (ESP)
12 Dimity- Lee Duke (AUS)
13 Christine Fletcher (CAN)
14 Katharina Grohmann (GER)
15 Lotty Harari (PAN)
16 Helena Herrero Gomez (ESP)
17 Petra Krejcova (CZE)
18 Angela Kühnlein (GER)
19 Caroline Livesey (GBR)
22 Bianca Steurer (AUT)
23 Astrid Stienen (GER)
24 Verena Walter (GER)
25 Katja Konschak (GER)
26 Mariana Borges de Andrade (BRA)
27 Carolin Lehrieder (GER)
28 Nina Kuhn (GER)
29 Nicole Woysch (GER)
32 Melissa Hauschildt (AUS)
33 Emma Bilham (SUI)

Men

51 Sebastian Kienle (GER)
53 Andi Boecherer (GER)
55 Bas Diederen (NED)
56 Tim O’Donnell (USA)
58 Johann Ackermann (GER)
59 Marko Albert (EST)
60 Clemente Alonso- Mckernan (ESP)
61 Alberto Casadei (ITA)
62 Denis Chevrot (FRA)
63 Maciej Chmura (POL)
64 Balazs Csoke (HUN)
65 Hywel Davies (GBR)
66 Vincent Depuiset (FRA)
67 Herve Faure (FRA)
68 Marton Flander (HUN)
69 Joe Gambles (AUS)
70 Esben Hovgaard (DEN)
71 Ivan Jezko (SVK)
72 Christian Kramer (GER)
73 Ludovic Le Guellec (FRA)
74 Michael Louys (BEL)
75 Felipe Manente (BRA)
77 Rayco Marrero Avero (ESP)
78 Matic Modic (SLO)
79 Gergo Molnar (HUN)
80 Julian Mutterer (GER)
81 Marek Nemcik (SVK)
82 Young Hwan Oh (KOR)
83 Gilian Oriet (SUI)
84 Alfred Rahm (GER)
85 Pascal Ramali (GER)
86 Daniil Sapunov (UKR)
87 Sylvain Sudrie (FRA)
88 Kevin Thewes (GER)
89 Michal Volejnik (CZE)
90 Michael Weiss (AUT)
91 Remmert Wielinga (NED)
92 Denis Sketako (SLO)
94 Marc Duelsen (GER)
95 Mike Schifferle (SUI)
96 Anton Blokhin (BLR)
97 Victor Del Corral (ESP)
98 Olivier Esser (BEL)
99 David Krupicka (CZE)
104 Roman Diesenhofer (GER)
105 Alexander Schilling (GER)
106 Youri Severin (NED)
107 David Jilek (CZE)
108 Petr Bednar (CZE)
109 Gudmund Snilstveit (NOR)
110 Thomas Bosch (GER)
111 Christian Brader (GER)
112 Enenko Llanos (ESP)
113 Lukas Polan (CZE)
114 William Clarke (GBR)
115 Igor Amorelli (BRA)
116 Jérémy Jurkiewicz (FRA)
117 Markus Thomschke (GER)
118 Eneko Elosegi (ESP)
119 Michael Davidson (RSA)
120 Bertrand Billard (FRA)
121 Ivan Risti (ITA)
122 Timo Moeschk (GER)

 

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Design The Perfect Swim Workout For You http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/06/29/design-the-perfect-swim-workout-for-you http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/06/29/design-the-perfect-swim-workout-for-you#comments Wed, 29 Jun 2016 13:00:01 +0000 http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/?p=55065

Photo: Shutterstock.com

It’s the middle of the week. The clock has just clicked to noon. It’s time for a lunch break, a few minutes of personal time before

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Photo: Shutterstock.com

Photo: Shutterstock.com

Photo: Shutterstock.com

It’s the middle of the week. The clock has just clicked to noon. It’s time for a lunch break, a few minutes of personal time before going back to work. What better way to use this time than to take a quick dip in the pool? Swimming a couple of laps is the perfect way to mentally recharge, not to mention go faster at the next race.

These lunch-break minutes—an extra baby-sitting hour, laundry-in-the-dryer time, or any spare moments that just become free—are prized gems. They should be expertly shaped and polished so that every angle glitters and sparkles. They should be set in only the most beautiful and precious metals. Every minute spent in the pool should be designed to produce the maximum benefit.

A common belief among multisport athletes is that swim training is very similar to cycling and running. This couldn’t be further from the truth. As a result of this misinformation, millions of continuous laps in the pool are performed every day. Stop! Please stop! Stop on the wall. Stop between sets. Stop on the other wall. Stop in the middle of the pool. Stop between intervals. Just S-T-O-P!

The most time-efficient way to improve swimming speed is to incorporate sets, intervals, drills and various levels of effort into your workout. A “set” is a fixed number of repetitions of a certain distance done at one time. For example: 4×100, 8×50 or 3×300. An “interval” is the period of time between one event and the next, or the amount of time given to complete a swim before starting the next one. For example: 100s on 2:00, 50s on 1:10, or 300s on 4:30. For this article, “drill” will refer to anything that is not freestyle swimming. Pulling, kicking, technique work, other strokes and breath control fall into this category. Finally, some common terms used to designate effort levels in the water are: “race-pace,” “strong,” “cruise,” “aerobic” and “recovery.”

Stage 1

Swimming a well-designed workout will provide the most benefit for every precious minute in the pool. The first stage of all training sessions—and swimming is no exception—is to warm up all the muscle groups. Warmup can start on the pool deck with some light stretching and arm swings. If the water is extremely cold, dry-land warmup is very important to prevent muscles from seizing up when they are suddenly submerged. An athlete should use the first 400 to 600 metres of a typical 3,000 metre workout as warmup. These laps should be swum without looking at the pace clock or other swimmers; focus only on making slow, smooth strokes with pretty technique.

Stage 2

The second stage of a swim workout is focused on correcting and improving technique. This is when most coaches will assign a drill set. One example of a set is 8×75 metres as 25 kick/25 drill/25 swim. The purpose of a kick drill is to strengthen the legs for a more powerful freestyle kick. Some coaches will designate a specific drill to be used on the second lap. If no details are provided, the swimmer should choose a drill he knows will improve his stroke. The final 25 metres (swim) are where the swimmer tries to correctly put the kick and stroke together.

It is common that a rest interval, for example 30 seconds rest after each 75 metres, will be assigned for the second stage. This type of interval is allows each swimmer to complete the set at her own pace. The focus is on correct technique, not speed.

Stage 3

A second drill or technique set might be included if that is the focus of the workout. If the focus is on improving speed or increasing power, the third stage is the main set. A main set should also have a specific goal that the swimmer tries to achieve. Descending time, holding pace, or best average are some examples of a main-set goal. The focus of the main set is to go fast and work hard. This is the part of the workout where swimmers get out of breath and turn red.

During a typical 3,000 metre workout, the main set is between 1,000 and 1,500 metres. Some examples include 4×300 swim on 6:00 (descend time 1-4); 12×100 strong swim (4 on 2:00, 4 on 1:55, 4 on 1:50); 3×150 pull/50 race-pace swim on 4:30. The main set might include pulling, swimming, kicking or a combination.

Another focus of the main set can be breath-control or hypoxic work. Just as hard pulling sets increase upper-body strength, hypoxic breathing sets strengthen the breathing muscles and increase lung capacity. There are a few situations an athlete might find himself in open water swimming where the ability to hold his breath is an advantage such as diving under waves or being pushed underwater by a competitor. A hypoxic swimming set looks like this: 5 x 150 swim (3/5/7 breathing pattern by 25). This means the swimmer breathes every third stroke on the first lap, every fifth stroke on the second lap, every seventh on the third lap, and then repeats the cycle to complete a 150 metre swim.

Stage 4

The fourth stage of swim practice is always cool-down. Cool-down can be as simple as 100 or 200 metres swum easy to lower the heart rate and stretch out the muscles. It can also be longer and purposeful, especially after an intense main set. The amount of lactic acid buildup in a swimmer’s muscles has a direct effect on the length and importance of the cool down. A simple set like 400 with fins (50 kick/50 swim) or 6×50 swim (extra long strokes) will help flush out the acid and reduce post-workout cramping.

 

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Execute The Perfect Race Day http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/06/29/execute-the-perfect-race-day http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/06/29/execute-the-perfect-race-day#comments Wed, 29 Jun 2016 12:00:20 +0000 http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/?p=35679

Photo: ITU Media / Janos Schmidt

Race day is often a blizzard of emotion and tasks from the time you wake and try to force food down at some unearthly hour, to getting to

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Photo: ITU Media / Janos Schmidt


Race day is often a blizzard of emotion and tasks from the time you wake and try to force food down at some unearthly hour, to getting to race site, setting up transition, warming up and then getting to the start line before the gun goes off. A massive amount of energy can be expended before you even get into the meat and potatoes of racing.

Beyond each race having it’s own logistical challenges, I consistently see athletes put up roadblocks and hurdles for themselves. Often they arrive without a plan, without a ritual of process and no means of making their approach to the race automatic. With an already tense situation looming, these are the athletes that add to the tension as they try to filter all the things to do through already confused and racing minds.

Ironically, these athletes are often those that are most likely to begin introducing unpracticed elements into their race day in pursuit of saving time. Should you leave your bike shoes in your pedals? The answer is obvious, only if you have practiced this to the point that the skill is an automatic behaviour. If not, then don’t do it. The same goes for many other factors in your race day arsenal. Don’t try new shoes, new nutrition, new hydration, an untested bottle set-up, a new wetsuit and the list goes on. New is generally not great when it comes to race day. Pretty obvious stuff really.

To limit unnecessary stress, minimise risk of controllable factors preventing good performance. Allow yourself to focus on the process of executing a great performance on race day. We can focus on a few key areas.

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Finding your tempo run http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/06/29/finding-your-run-tempo http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/06/29/finding-your-run-tempo#comments Wed, 29 Jun 2016 11:00:04 +0000 http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/?p=49714

Photo: Scott Draper

Running enthusiasts often love to throw around the term “tempo run.” Yet I’ve found in working with all levels of athletes that many

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Photo: Scott Draper

Running enthusiasts often love to throw around the term “tempo run.” Yet I’ve found in working with all levels of athletes that many are often confused about what tempo runs really are—and where they fit into your training. Tempo runs are one of the best ways to improve your aerobic conditioning, but they are often overemphasised in a training program or inadvertently performed at the wrong effort level. These workouts are an essential part of an effective training program. The problem? Many runners believe there is always room for another tempo run and thus tend to neglect other training necessities.

Let’s take a closer look at tempo runs and ensure you have a good understanding of what they are and how best to include them in your training program.

What is “Tempo”?
Tempo (or threshold) runs are efforts that are performed right at your aerobic threshold, or just below the point where your body produces lactic acid due to a lack of oxygen being absorbed and delivered to working muscles. These workouts fall within 80–85 percent of max heart rate, which is about half-marathon effort or pace. Tempo effort is noticeably more challenging than an easy run but also not so hard that you can’t maintain the pacing consistently. You shouldn’t be able to carry on a conversation during a tempo run—but you also shouldn’t be so out of breath that even getting out one-word answers is tough.

How do they fit into your training schedule?
Tempo runs have their place in a training schedule along with the total number of weekly miles, long runs, long intervals and speed workouts. Too often, athletes will do a tempo run because they’re easy to execute, there are no intervals involved and you don’t need a track or a hill. It’s important to recognise that all the above training elements have their place in a program. If you neglect any of them, tempo runs will only have limited benefits. For example, if you don’t do speed work, your body will not be able to adapt to a faster turnover, which ultimately translates to quicker tempo pace. Similarly, if you don’t include long interval workouts—where you body is over your threshold and producing lactic acid—you won’t be as fit as you would be otherwise, and thus a tempo run will only offer moderate fitness gains.

How long should they be, and how often should I do them?
Running your tempos too hard or too easy defeats the purpose of the workout. If you are running under 6 miles for the workout, maintaining half-marathon pace or effort is just about right; for longer tempo runs between 6–10 miles, marathon effort/pace (or 75–80 percent of max heart rate) is more accurate.

If you are new to structured training, a 6-mile tempo run is much too long, but it’s something to work toward over several months. Breaking up the workout into smaller segments is a good way to mix up the pacing while still maintaining threshold effort (see below).

When training for a marathon, tempo runs longer than six miles are necessary. They should not replace your long run or be so long that your recovery (and subsequently, your marathon performance) is compromised. A good range is 6–10 miles for longer tempo runs. For experienced runners, the workout doesn’t need to be broken up into smaller segments, since the pacing should be more controlled and closer to marathon goal pace. Remember to warm up and cool down with a mile or two of easy running before and after the tempo run.

Tempo runs should be performed about once every 10 days. They’re a good workout to start with when coming off a break or easing back into training after illness or injury since they engage your aerobic system without overly taxing your muscles or tendons like speed work or hill repeats.

How to break a tempo run into smaller segments:
– 3 x 10:00 @ half-marathon to marathon pace with 2:30 rest between intervals
– 4 x 8:00 at half-marathon pace with 2:00 rest between intervals
– 2 x 20:00 at half-marathon to marathon pace with 3:30 rest between intervals
– 2 x 3 miles @ half-marathon pace with 4:00 rest between intervals

About The Author: Two-time Olympian Alan Culpepper helps runners of all abilities through culpeppercoaching.com.

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One-Hour Workout: Big Gear Hill Climbs http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/06/29/one-hour-workout-big-gear-hill-climbs http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/06/29/one-hour-workout-big-gear-hill-climbs#comments Wed, 29 Jun 2016 10:00:30 +0000 http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/?p=56927

Photo: Shutterstock.com

This week’s bike workout comes from coach Dan Frost of MP Multisport in Fort Collins, Colo. Coach Frost is a USAT Level I and ASCA

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Photo: Shutterstock.com

Photo: Shutterstock.com

Photo: Shutterstock.com

This week’s bike workout comes from coach Dan Frost of MP Multisport in Fort Collins, Colo. Coach Frost is a USAT Level I and ASCA Masters Level II coach, and also serves as a technical official for ITU and USAT. Frost says this one-hour workout is designed to be done outside, and that it is good for athletes racing any distance—however, it is specifically suited for half- and full-iron distance athletes who need to cram a high-intensity ride into their week. “This is a combined power building and tempo ride for the athlete preparing for a triathlon on a rolling or hilly course,” Frost adds.

Warm-up
20 min ride to a hill (or if no hill available, ride to a flat, open area)

Main Set
3x(3min big gear/60–70 RPM/100–105% of threshold + U-turn and easy spin back to starting point)

10 min tempo effort, 80–90% of threshold

Cool-down
10 min very easy

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3 Race-Day Hacks For Triathletes http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/06/29/3-race-day-hacks-for-triathletes http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/06/29/3-race-day-hacks-for-triathletes#comments Wed, 29 Jun 2016 09:00:36 +0000 http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/?p=56920

Photo: Oliver Baker

Three simple items that will turn you into the MacGyver of triathlon. Baby Powder For those who race sockless, a sprinkle of the

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Photo: Oliver Baker

Photo: Oliver Baker

Photo: Oliver Baker

Three simple items that will turn you into the MacGyver of triathlon.

Baby Powder

For those who race sockless, a sprinkle of the water-absorbing powder in your cycling and running shoes works wonders. Even if you train sockless, you may be susceptible to hot spots and blisters on race day, so add a dash of baby powder to help absorb that extra moisture. You can also use the powder to draw a small arrow or smiley face on the ground in front of your rack in transition to help you find your spot.

Electrical Tape

If you don’t have enough pockets to carry your race day nutrition and don’t want to buy a top tube storage box, you can tape a gel to the frame of your bike behind your stem. Tape the opening of the packet so you open the gel as you pull it from your frame. If you take electrolyte pills while racing, you can place a strip of tape around your top tube, stem or bars with the sticky side up. Stick the pills on the tape and pull them off when needed. While USA Triathlon rules state that race numbers should not be altered in any way, you can use electrical tape to affix your number to the frame of your bike if you’re riding a rig with deep tube sections.

Zip Ties

There are about a dozen hydration setups that mount between your aerobars. If you want to make your own, you can do it on the cheap with a bottle cage and four zip ties. It may not be as secure or aero as one of the many options on the market, but it can get the job done. Get a side-loading cage like the Lezyne Flow Cage SL (£10.99, lezyne.com) so you don’t have to slide the bottle forward to get it out of the cage.

 

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5 Techniques For Recovery From Triathlons http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/06/28/5-techniques-for-recovery-from-triathlons http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/06/28/5-techniques-for-recovery-from-triathlons#comments Tue, 28 Jun 2016 14:00:09 +0000 http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/?p=56908

When it comes to recovery, timing is critical. Here’s a sampling of some of the best techniques and the ideal time to use them.

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When it comes to recovery, timing is critical. Here’s a sampling of some of the best techniques and the ideal time to use them.

Compression

A recent Australian study found that athletes can improve their performance in 30 minutes of high-intensity cycling by wearing compression clothing. Choose graduated gear (highest pressure at the ankle), avoid cheap material (nylon and elastane), always air dry and avoid “medical-grade,” as it may actually inhibit blood flow.

Time it right: Timing is not fully understood, although general guidelines include always on flights and long car rides, immediately after hard efforts and when sitting (desk job) or standing (on-feet job) for extended periods of time.

Ice Bath

Used since the triathalosarus days, cold-water immersion is cheap and can reduce immediate soreness. All you need is a tub and ice or a cold river/lake and a thermometer (approximately 55 degrees F).

Time it right: It may be ideal to use compression immediately after exercise and then ice three hours after exercise for 10–15 minutes to allow normal protein synthesis to occur. It’s possible that even though ice may reduce immediate muscle pain/soreness, it may inhibit overall recovery if used too early after effort.

Massage

A foam roller, ball, PVC pipe, etc., can bring legs back to homeostasis. If you address adhesions or knots in the soft tissue on a regular basis, it can be extremely beneficial as both a recovery tool and an injury-prevention technique.

Time it right: The best time for a massage is three hours or longer after a race or hard effort. A 2009 study in the British Journal of Sports Medicine concluded that massage immediately after intense effort inhibited the body’s ability to remove lactate from muscle.

Active Recovery

An easy spin on the bike or short, low-intensity run.

Time it right: Research suggests that active recovery can “flush” the body and legs in the early and immediate phase and, along with compression, should be considered as an immediate recovery technique.

Rest

There is no substitute for recovery days and good sleep.

Time it right: Resting when your body needs it and creating low-stress environments will always be an ongoing top priority. Using a coach and understanding key metrics of body response to training (such as heart rate recovery) need to be coupled with recovery methods based on science, with careful attention to timing.

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Simple Ways To Add Speed & Endurance http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/06/28/simple-ways-to-add-speed-endurance http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/06/28/simple-ways-to-add-speed-endurance#comments Tue, 28 Jun 2016 13:00:54 +0000 http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/?p=38481

Learn the benefits of developing VO2 Max, Lactate Threshold and Running Economy. Photo: Shutterstock

Over the past several years, athletes have continued to defy the odds and break performance barriers once believed to be impossible. Five

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Learn the benefits of developing VO2 Max, Lactate Threshold and Running Economy. Photo: Shutterstock

Over the past several years, athletes have continued to defy the odds and break performance barriers once believed to be impossible. Five years ago at the Beijing Olympics, for example, U.S. swimmer Michael Phelps amazed us all by earning eight gold medals. Distance runner Haile Gebreselassie dipped under 2:04 and broke his own world record at the Berlin Marathon that same year, while triathlete Chrissie Wellington repeated as Ironman World Champion, winning by 15 minutes despite a flat on the bike leg.

Many wonder what factors contribute to these athletes’ performance peaks. Genetics no doubt plays a role, yet research suggests that genes contribute no more than half of an athlete’s VO2 max (maximal rate of oxygen consumption), which is one key predictor of performance capacity. Both training and nutrition manipulation also help to not only boost an athlete’s VO2 max, but also the lactate threshold and sport economy, two additional pieces to the performance puzzle. This article looks at the training and nutrition techniques that have been proven to enhance these three elements, thereby helping to maximise performance potential.

VO2 Max
Essential For: Athletes in 5K/10K running events
Your VO2 max measures the maximum amount of oxygen that can be consumed per minute while training. The highest VO2 max ever recorded was by cross-country skier Bjorn Daehilie: at 94 ml/kg/dl, which towers over the average athlete’s VO2 max by 30-40 percent. The good news is that by increasing training volume and intensity, research suggests that an athlete, depending on baseline fitness level, can boost his VO2 max by as much as 40 percent. And a 10 percent increase in VO2 max can shave more than a minute off a 5K run time!

Increased training volume is the most common way to improve your VO2 max, but it is important to understand there are diminishing returns at a certain volume: 60-90 run miles/week or 10-12 hours for most athletes. A more efficient way to improve VO2 max, according to French exercise physiologist Veronique Billat, is to do intervals at a speed that elicits your VO2 max — or the fastest effort you can maintain — for about eight minutes (up to 90 percent of your maximum heart rate).

Nutrition Tip: Blood sugars tend to decrease while levels of common inflammation markers increase after finishing high-intensity efforts, making nutrition important for optimal recovery. Try blending the following recovery-focused ingredients after your next workout: tart cherry juice, low-fat vanilla yogurt and a frozen banana.

Lactate Threshold
Essential For: Athletes in half marathons
Your lactate, or anaerobic threshold (LT) pace is defined as the fastest pace you can sustain for an extended period (20+ minutes) before lactate, a by-product of the fuel burned during hard exercise, starts building up in your blood causing muscle fatigue. Your LT pace will evolve (get faster) with proper training. Recreational athletes typically hit their LT at about 65 to 80 percent of their VO2 max, whereas elite and world-class endurance athletes tend to peak at 85-95 percent. This is what allows athletes such as Gebreselassie or Lance Armstrong to hold such a strong pace for longer distances.

Nutrition Tip: A diet rich in healthy carbohydrates (potatoes, whole grains, fruits, vegetables) is essential for enhancing muscle glycogen stores during LT training.

Sport Economy
Essential For: All athletes, but especially marathoners
Running economy measures the amount of oxygen you need to train, at any pace. Biomechanics play a huge role in running economy so enlisting the help of a professional to evaluate your running gait is often very helpful in enhancing sport economy — along with VO2 max and LT workouts. A third workout that helps improve an athlete’s running economy involves longer efforts, generally 25-50 percent longer in length than LT and VO2 max workouts, yet completed at a more aerobic conversational pace. These longer efforts should be completed once a week.

Nutrition Tip: Losing excess body fat will help yield dramatic improvements in sport economy, as leaner athletes simply require less oxygen to reach that finish line. To aid weight loss in a healthy manner, cut 250-500 calories from your daily nutrition intake or add 25-45 minutes to your regular energy expenditure.

About The Author: Kim Mueller, MS, RD, owner of Fuel Factor Nutrition, is a registered dietitian and exercise physiologist who provides customized menu planning, nutrition coaching and race-specific nutrition programs to athletes worldwide. You can contact her at kim@Fuel-Factor.com.

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Q&A: What Role Do Heart Rate Monitors Play In Training? http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/06/28/qa-what-role-do-heart-rate-monitors-play-in-training http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/06/28/qa-what-role-do-heart-rate-monitors-play-in-training#comments Tue, 28 Jun 2016 12:00:55 +0000 http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/?p=35778

Question: With power meters and GPS devices, what role does a heart rate monitor play, and how should it be used throughout the year?

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Question: With power meters and GPS devices, what role does a heart rate monitor play, and how should it be used throughout the year?

Answer: In the late ’80s and early ’90s, heart rate training was cutting-edge technology. Today with the vast majority of athletes using power meters and GPS devices, many athletes have ignored heart monitors. But if done properly, you can integrate heart rate training with power meters and GPS devices.

One device doesn’t solve all needs. Heart rate monitors are not effective for short, high-intensity intervals as the heart rate will often lag a minute or two behind the actual intensity level. Additionally, in hot environments or during indoor training with low ventilation, heart rate monitors may become unreliable due to dehydration and the body’s ability to cool itself. Here are four ways to better utilise your heart rate monitor.

In the off-season or base building, the heart rate monitor can be used to set an upper ceiling, which is equivalent to your aerobic threshold level. This will allow you to develop your aerobic system and metabolic efficiency. As your fitness and efficiency develops, you’ll notice that you will be going at higher paces/wattage for the same heart rate level.

Recovery sessions are best done based upon low heart rate numbers. Speed or pace is not important here, but maintaining a low-stress workout to facilitate recovery is.

Using heart rate to dictate the length of a recovery interval is a great use of the monitor. As the athlete improves fitness, the recovery time will shorten.

During long endurance sessions or long interval sessions, the heart rate monitor becomes a reliable indicator of intensity level. By comparing sustainable heart rate and pace/wattage levels, athletes can figure out their optimal long-course race pace.

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Transition Dos and Don’ts http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/06/28/transition-dos-and-donts http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/06/28/transition-dos-and-donts#comments Tue, 28 Jun 2016 11:00:03 +0000 http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/?p=47037

Photo: Delly Carr / ITU Media

Pro triathletes move through the transition area in poetic motion. You would never know they had just done a hard swim the way they dash

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Photo: Delly Carr / ITU Media

Pro triathletes move through the transition area in poetic motion. You would never know they had just done a hard swim the way they dash in, don their helmet and sunglasses and swipe their bikes in one seamless movement, headed out for the ride. Seeing them come in to start the run is equally impressive.

Then there are the rest of us–the chaos theory in full effect. The blood has yet to move from the arms to the brain, and we’re dashing about, wetsuit pulled over the head, running, stopping … looking, doubling back, going down the row to the bike.

There are a few unspoken laws associated with the transition area. Sometimes you gotta learn by taking your lumps. Or just read below, avoid the trouble and earn the gratitude of your fellow competitors.

Do
Bring a Pump. You could rely on the guy next to you, but that’s not fair to him as he’s trying to prepare for his race and is finding his pump pulled away every four minutes. Be self-sufficient and bring your home floor pump to top off the air in your tires on race morning.

Bring Toilet Paper. You’ve stood in line for the Porta-Potty, made it to the front and entered to find no T.P. There’s more than enough stress on race morning than to have to deal with the drama of having your wetsuit around your ankles five minutes before your wave goes off. Bring a roll in, and once you’re done, leave it behind for someone else. It’s a karmic pay-it-forward thing that everyone will appreciate.

Keep Your Eyes Peeled. Folks dashing for age-group glory can move like a bull through a china shop, mowing over anything in their path. So keep an eye out for those overly excited competitors.

Take your Time. Haste makes waste in triathlon transitions. What kind of waste? Forgetting to put your race number on. Forgetting to take your bike helmet off. That kind of thing. Pace yourself through transitions just as you do when swimming, cycling and running, to ensure that you get it all right the first time. If that means sitting down to pull off the wetsuit or pull on your shoes, go for it.

Make a Pre-race Visual Cue. You’ve just dashed from the water and are headed into a sea of bikes. Where’s yours? Be sure before the race to make a visual marker of which row your bike is, and how far down the rack it is. Some tie a balloon to the rack to mark their spot (though you don’t see the pros doing this). Your best bet to find your bike is with a bright towel or transition mat—blaze orange, tie-dyed, the brighter the better.

Keep a spare set of goggles. It’s happened before: You pull on those favorite goggles and … snap! The rubber strap breaks. Don’t test the chaos theory; have a backup set in your transition bag. And if it happens to someone nearby, you can bail him out my tossing him your spare. You may be out 10 bucks, but you’ll make it up in good karma.

Practice. Before some Saturday bike ride, find a spot at the park and practice the transition procedure you plan to execute on race day. Bring a pair of running shoes and a towel. You don’t need a rack; just lean the bike up against a wall and practice running up to the bike, putting on sunglasses and helmet and getting onto the bike. Likewise, set up an imaginary dismount line and practice safe, straight-lined stops and dismounts. It’ll make your race-day experience a familiar one.

Don’t
Move bikes to create prime real estate. Yes, that little space between the two bikes on the first rack would be perfect for your bike. If the owners of the bikes aren’t there to ask if you can squeeze in, don’t take it upon yourself to do so; these folks got in line early to get those prime spots at the rack, and they won’t be keen to find that you’ve usurped the space. Move on down the rack and find an appropriate spot for your own goods.

Overreach your rack space. With only so much real estate between bikes on a packed transition area rack, everyone needs only a bit of space to place his towel, running shoes and visor. Pick a spot to either side of your bike and claim no more than the width of your backpack for your gear placement. You only need enough space to place one set of bike shoes, one set of run shoes, a running hat and a race belt. Anything more is too much.

Bring the kitchen sink. A disturbing trend at races is that folks bring not only their essential gear (a towel, race shoes, visor) but also non-essentials. That would include a dish bucket to rinse feet after the swim and bike, folding chairs. It’s a race; leave the comfort accoutrements at home.

Try new moves. Never done a flying mount onto your bike? Started a ride with your shoes already clipped to your bike? Done a rolling dismount? Don’t try it on race day. These techniques save time when done well, but race day isn’t the time to try them for the first time. Practice and perfect them in training.

Forget anything. The best way to avoid showing up at the race, opening your duffel–A duffel? Really?–and realizing you’ve forgotten your wetsuit is to use a dedicated triathlon transition bag. They really do make a difference, with pockets and partitions for everything from wetsuit and run and bike shoes to keys and phone (so you’re not on an Easter egg hunt post-race to call and tell your spouse about your epic day). There’s a place for everything and everything’s in its place.

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