Triathlete Europe http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com Europe's leading source for triathlon news and information. Thu, 18 Aug 2016 16:21:34 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.5.2 Europe's leading source for triathlon news and information. Triathlete Europe no Europe's leading source for triathlon news and information. Triathlete EuropeTriathlete Europe http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/wp-content/plugins/powerpress/rss_default.jpg http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com Alistair Brownlee Successfully Defends Olympic Gold http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/08/18/alistair-brownlee-successfully-defends-olympic-gold Thu, 18 Aug 2016 16:21:12 +0000 http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/?p=57470 The Brownlee brothers set the pace for the day, with Jonathan Brownlee earning silver and Henri Schoeman grabbing a surprise bronze.

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The Brownlee brothers set the pace for the day, with Jonathan Brownlee earning silver and Henri Schoeman grabbing a surprise bronze.

Though race morning greeted the 55 men with warm and humid conditions, it wasn’t nearly as sweltering as many feared it would be. Right at 11 a.m. local time, the athletes ran over the sand of Copacabana Beach and into the Atlantic Ocean for the one lap, 1500-meter swim.

Slovakia’s Richard Varga led out of swim, with a long trail of athletes right behind him. Both Alistair and Jonathan Brownlee were near the front coming out of T1 and together they immediately demanded a fierce pace from those around them. That high speed quickly dwindled the lead group down to 10 as the men took on the tough and hilly eight-lap bike course. Joining the Brownlees in that front pack were Varga, Vincent Luis (FRA), Ben Kanute (USA), Aaron Royle (AUS), Marten Van Riel (BEL), Alessandro Fabian (ITA), Henri Schoeman (RSA) and Andrea Salvisberg (SUI). At this point the race was playing out exactly how the Brownlee brothers had hoped – both part of the lead pack with the fastest runners left to try to keep the gap to a minimum. The group initially looked to be building the advantage with every lap, but the chase pack eventually got organized and was able to minimize the damage.

It was too little too late though as Varga led that group of 10 into T2 with a solid one-minute advantage. Onto the run, Alistair and Jonathan Brownlee immediately took control and, as long as they could handle the Rio conditions, it became clear that they would both again be on the Olympic podium. The two ran together out front the first half of the 10K, but eventually Alistair decided to break away and work to reclaim his gold medal. In the 17 times the Brownlee brothers have competed against each other at the Olympic distance, Jonathan has never beaten Alistair and that would be no different today.

Alistair Brownlee carried the top spot all the way to the finish line, becoming the first athlete in triathlon’s 16-year Olympic history to successfully defend an Olympic gold medal. Jonathan Brownlee improved on his 2012 bronze medal, earning the silver right behind his brother. Schoeman, a relative unknown on the International Triathlon Union circuit, found peak form at the right time to claim the bronze medal. It could have easily been a repeat of the 2012 Olympic podium, except silver medalist Javier Gomez (ESP) was forced to withdraw from the Olympic competition after breaking his arm in a bike crash one month ago.

Check back for more from Rio

2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil – Aug. 18, 2016
1.5K swim, 40K bike, 10K run

Men
1. Alistair Brownlee (GBR) 1:45:01
2. Jonathan Brownlee (GBR) +:06
3. Henri Schoeman (RSA) +:42
4. Richard Murray (RSA) +:49
5. João Pereira (POR) +:51

 

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Swim Training: Keep Your Head Down http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/08/18/swim-training-keep-your-head-down Thu, 18 Aug 2016 13:00:59 +0000 http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/?p=32665

Just like in golf, there’s a temptation in swimming to look up. In fact, 95 per cent of the swimmers who come to train with me–from

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Just like in golf, there’s a temptation in swimming to look up. In fact, 95 per cent of the swimmers who come to train with me–from beginners to Olympic hopefuls–hold their heads too high in the water in freestyle, as well as in backstroke, breaststroke and fly.

Holding your head high is bad for two reasons: First, lifting your head in the water creates a nice bow wave bouncing off of your forehead with every stroke you take. How significant can that be at the speed you are swimming? Well, surprisingly significant. Surface or wave drag is one of the most important forces that contribute to you slowing, and your head is the primary culprit. By lowering your head in the water, particularly as the lead hand enters the water (the fastest point in your stroke cycle), you actually allow the wave to go over your head and let that wave drag just pass you by.

Secondly, when you lift your head, your backside sinks down in the water. Suddenly, you turn your relatively straight body into a hammock in the water. As a result, your body’s drag coefficient (the amount of resistance you create in the water) increases and you are working harder for the same precious metres of gain.

So why does everyone swim with their head up? Self-defense, for one. If you have ever been smacked in the head by someone veering into your side of the lane, you, too, will swim like Tarzan from that moment on. When your head is in the proper position, looking straight down, you will not have a clue as to what is in front of you, only that black line painted on the bottom of the pool. Avoid those head-on collisions by staying way to the right, leading your lane if possible or leaving 10 seconds behind the person in front of you.

The other reason has to do with the ongoing conflict between power and frontal drag. Although the position of least frontal drag for your body is a straight body in alignment with your head, to get the most power at the initiation of the underwater pull (lift and propulsive phases), you actually have to arch your back some, just as if you were trying to start a pull-up. In fact, if you closely observe the lower back of a fast swim- mer during the stroke cycle, you will find that the lower back arches some at the initiation of the underwater pull, then straightens as the next hand enters the water, repeating this cycle over and over. As a result of the arch, the head also lifts slightly higher in the water, causing more frontal drag.

Head position is another example of the compromise you need to take between the position of least frontal drag and the position of most propulsive power. Re- member, however, if you are going to err, side with the least frontal drag. It trumps power in swimming.

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Nine ways to squander your run training http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/08/18/nine-ways-to-squander-your-run-training Thu, 18 Aug 2016 12:00:56 +0000 http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/?p=52635

Photo: Shutterstock

The following attitudes and behaviours are some of the most common ways people fall short of their goals well in advance of the races

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Photo: Shutterstock

The following attitudes and behaviours are some of the most common ways people fall short of their goals well in advance of the races themselves—along with strategies to combat them, should you stubbornly insist on reaping the positive rewards of your labours.

1. Scale Back Your Goal After A Subpar Workout
If you are hoping to run a 3:30 marathon, have consistently done mile repeats in the 7:00 range and a half marathon in under 1:40, and then struggle to hit an 8:15 pace in your first long marathon-pace run, you can shoot for 3:45 instead … or you can accept that subpar workouts happen to all of us during even the most productive training cycle and put it behind you until next time.

2. Treat Your GPS Device As Infallible
If your GPS watch suggests that you’re running 4:50 pace or 7:10 pace and it feels more like 6:00 pace, curse yourself for your inability to pace yourself and give up for the day … or you can recognise that even the best GPS devices can be thrown by a number of factors, especially early in a run, and go by feel in these situations instead. Lots of GPS fans race much better with their gadgets at home.

3. Set An Upper Limit For Your Recovery-Run Pace
After giving lip service to the idea that recovery pace is whatever it takes to feel better at the end rather than at the beginning, you become frustrated with how slowly you’re moving after a hard 22-miler the day before … or you can stop playing fast and loose with the term “recovery,” leave the watch on the table, warm up to the effort with a shuffling jog and finish with a smile on your face.

4. Remain An Inflexible Slave To The Seven-Day Calendar Week
If you have a tempo run, a track session and a long run scheduled in a week, and weather, work or illness scuttle the planned sequence, pack all three efforts into the weekend to prove how disciplined you are … or you can simply wait until you’re physically and otherwise ready to run hard again, regardless of what day it is.

5. Use Race-Conversion Charts To Judge Yourself As Harshly As You Can
Even though the various popular online and offline one-distance-to-another conversion tables all disagree with each other, figure out a way by which you obviously lack either enough endurance or sufficient speed … or you can use these tools as they are intended—as rough guidelines to help you structure, say, 10K workouts around when your background is that of a mile/two-mile specialist. These are not charts to convert one currency to another.

6. Don’t Allow For Off-Days, As This Is Just Excuse-Mongering
If you don’t perform as well in a race as your past races and workouts suggest that you could have, chalking this up to “one of those days” is just what losers do … or you can acknowledge that you do a lot more workouts than you do races, and that thanks to colds, bad weather and life’s unpredictable challenges, the chances of you feeling as great in any given race as you did in your best workout simply aren’t that great. Try to learn from these without obsessing over them.

7. If You Have A Coach And Disagree With Something He Or She Says, Recognise Who The Boss Is
If your coach is older or faster than you or both, it’s best to remember that he or she is also much more experienced … or you can bring things back to reality and recognise that coaching is never a one-way stream of communication, and that you owe it to yourself to clear up any uncertainties or other problems before they get worse.

8. On The Starting Line Of Your Goal Race, Talk Yourself Into Just ‘Running For Fun
Once you’re on the line and awash in nervous agitation, you can look around and remember that a race is just a celebration of being healthy enough to enjoy the experience … or you can remind yourself that testing yourself, your training savvy and your physical and psychological range out there is fun, too, and acknowledge that such “approach-avoidant” mental games are typical even in top athletes. It’s just a race, but make it a real race.

9. Unflinchingly View Your Results As A Reflection As Your Personal Worth
This is probably the single most efficient way to dissolve all enjoyment of running as a competitive activity. If you “fail” at running because you finish in a slower time than you might have if you hadn’t eased off the gas pedal or gone out too hard, then secretly telling yourself the lie that “If I can’t do this, I can’t do anything” amounts to tormenting yourself in a way that you would never torment another runner. Pithy as it sounds, there’s as much value in the experience of chasing a goal as there is in attaining it, and you don’t have to be 70 and beat up before you figure this out.

About The Author: Kevin Beck has been a runner since 1984 and holds a personal best of 2:24:17 in the marathon. A former senior writer for Running Times, he is the editor of Run Strong (Human Kinetics, 2005), and has also written about sports and health-related topics for Marathon & Beyond, Men’s Fitness, The Roanoke Valley Sports Journal, and numerous other publications.

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Three Interval Sets To Improve Speed On The Bike http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/08/18/three-interval-sets-to-improve-speed-on-the-bike Thu, 18 Aug 2016 11:00:49 +0000 http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/?p=31927

Coach Gordo Byrn provides three cycling sets that specifically address the limiters that he sees most often when working with athletes. 1.

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Coach Gordo Byrn provides three cycling sets that specifically address the limiters that he sees most often when working with athletes.

1. To improve your performance on the flats, do Big Gear Intervals
Try 5×8 minutes in a big gear with 2-minute spinning recoveries.

Aim for 60 RPM in your TT position.

Use a threshold effort, where you build to a burning in the legs then back off a touch.

Keep your head up when riding fast!

2. To improve your ability to boost effort then recover at race pace, do 12/3s
Alternate 12 minutes at race-specific intensity with 3 minutes one zone up (if you’re racing Ironman, do your 3 minutes at half-Ironman race pace).

Olympic-distance athletes can build to 45-minute sets (3×12/3 continuous), 70.3-distance athletes can build to two 75-minute sets (5×12/3) and iron-distance athletes can build to two 90-minute sets (6×12/3).

Most athletes overestimate optimal bike effort, so start a little easier than you think you need to.

For an added benefit, change your cadence in the middle of each 12-minute segment. For example, alternate 92/60/92 RPM for each 4-minute chunk.

3. To improve your intensive aerobic ability, do Lactate Threshold (LT) Intervals.

LT intervals are intense, aerobic efforts where you can hear your breathing but do not feel burning in the legs. A monthly 40-minute LT test serves as a good benchmark to track fitness.

Aim for a cadence of 92 RPM, build your effort gradually and stay just below the point where you feel burning.

For the technically minded, 80–85 percent of functional threshold power (FTP) is optimal, and you should cap your heart rate at 8 BPM under FTP heart rate. With experienced athletes, the duration of LT benchmarking can increase up to 2.5 hours (use very sparingly).

Gordo Byrn is the founder of Endurancecorner.com, the co-author of Going Long and a past champion of Ultraman Hawaii.

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Tri’d And Tested: 2XU Compression Sleeved Trisuit (£150) http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/08/18/trid-tested-2xu-compression-sleeved-trisuit Thu, 18 Aug 2016 10:00:43 +0000 http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/?p=57457 Sleeved tri suits are becoming more and more popular and all the top 10 male and 8 of the top 10 females completed the bike course of Kona

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Sleeved tri suits are becoming more and more popular and all the top 10 male and 8 of the top 10 females completed the bike course of Kona 2015 in sleeved tri suits. There is a host of wind tunnel data showing that there are sizeable aerodynamic savings to be made over the sleeveless counterpart with some companies claiming 45-67.5 seconds save over a 90km bike leg.

The 2XU compression sleeved tri suit does not just having a potential aero benefit but the suit offers great sun protection. The 2XU compression sleeve tri suit has a UPF of 50+ and is combined with ICE X CT which protects against harmful rays. The suit also benefits from Vent Mesh – a high filament polyester-elastane matrix with jacquard mesh finish, it delivers maximum ventilation in a silky smooth finish for comfort with outstanding breathability and moisture management is assured.

The size reviewed was a small and this fit very well (181cm and 72kg). My measurement fell in both the small (chest) and medium (waist) sizing and opting for the smaller size was a good choice. The sleeves were tight against the arms but not overly restrictive and no creases were formed. The body of the suit fitted well and did not have tightness across the chest and the length of leg was spot on too. The suit fit perfectly and the compression within the legs gave great support which is not found in other sleeved tri suits. The compressive legs in the suit is achieved with 150 denier lycra that stabilises the muscles and is designed to reduce fatigue and increase endurance.

The major difference between this suit and other sleeved versions on the market is the way in which the top half in combined with the legs. Other suits on the market are based on a one piece design, similar to a time trial suit. 2XU have designed the suit based on a pair of shorts with a jersey sewn in. This design does feel more comfortable than others on the market and the full length zip gives great access for a quick toilet stop when needed. This is not a task which can be performed easily in other sleeved suits.

The chamois within the suit is a memory tech LD chamois. It has time trial specific zonal padding and on first inspection it felt very light and minimal compared to other long distance suits which did give a slight worry. When tested on the road in the TT position, the support and comfort was amazing, it didn’t feel excessive nor did it feel too wide. When transitioning off the bike onto the run, the minimal padding was unnoticeable on the run with no chaffing or rubbing occurring.

Occasionally tri-suits feels restrictive around the chest once onto the run, this suit did not, it was comfortable and again did not give the feeling of over heating. With the full length zip and a “two piece” construction there was a relaxed feel around the chest allowing for easy breathing without restriction but the chest was not flapping in the wind on the bike. 

When exiting the water, the suit did not dry as quickly as others on the market. This was mainly on the legs. Once on the bike and a few km’s into the bike leg the legs were fully dry. The suit was quick to wick when water is applied or if you are unfortunate to race with a rain shower while on the bike and run. The water retention on the legs is a slight negative but the compression properties do make up for this once the suit has dried from the swim.

More info can be found at www.2xu.com/uk.

performance 8/10

value 8/10

overall 8/10

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Why Does Swimming Make You Sleepy? http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/08/18/why-does-swimming-make-you-sleepy Thu, 18 Aug 2016 09:00:25 +0000 http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/?p=31248

Question: After my morning swim practice I am absolutely exhausted, more so than in any other sport. Why does swimming make me so sleepy?

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Question: After my morning swim practice I am absolutely exhausted, more so than in any other sport. Why does swimming make me so sleepy?

For my entire triathlon career I have wondered the exact same thing! Growing up as a runner, I would usually feel great after a long run—my body was tired, but I was mentally alert. Once I started swimming, I could barely keep my eyes open after practice. My organic chemistry grade from the year I swam with my college swim team can attest to this fact—unfortunate scheduling placed this (already tedious) class immediately after our two-hour morning swim practice. I would race to lecture straight from the pool at 8 and, once the adrenaline of sprinting across campus wore off, it was only a matter of minutes before my eyes drooped and my head started bobbing like a chicken.

I tried everything: I brought snacks to class, figuring that as long as I was eating I could stay awake. I went to bed early (well, earlier). I tried caffeine—until then I had never liked coffee, but that year quickly progressed from gateway mochas and Frappuccinos to mainlining triple espressos. Nothing was enough to overcome the narcoleptic power of the pre-dawn 5K swim set, so the majority of my notes from that year consisted of trailed-off pen scratches and incomplete sentences. Even now, no matter how physically tired I am after running, it is never the same sleep-inducing fog as that which overcomes me post-swim practice. So what gives?

I did some research and found a few interesting theories about why swimming makes us quite so drained. I have also added some training tips to try to mitigate the sedative effects of the morning swim workout.

Cold water: In the pool, our bodies lose heat much more quickly than in air of the same temperature due to the increased heat conduction property of water. Even when swimming hard, after a length of time in a cold pool, your core temperature will be slightly lowered. In addition, your body is expending more energy to maintain that temperature, which leads to greater fatigue than normal. After you get out and warm up, your body responds to this re-warming process as it would to drinking hot cocoa or sitting in front of the fire after a cold, winter day—by making you sleepy. So it might not be so much the coldness of the water that makes us tired as much as the re-heating process afterward. In addition, most people find swimming in water that is too warm also leads to fatigue. Try to find a training pool that maintains the water temperature somewhere around 78–80 degrees F.

There is no (healthy) way to avoid this post-swim warm-up, so if you find yourself ready for a nap, try sipping ice water instead of a hot drink after practice. Or even better, plan a short run or spin after swimming. I find if I follow swim practice with a 20-minute jog, the increased blood flow counteracts the warming up process and helps me to be more alert afterward.

Sunshine: Some people claim that the fatigue is caused by sun exposure, not the water. They have a point—after a day out skiing or even just lounging on the beach, a nap is welcomed by most. One study even claimed that subjects experienced a decrease of cognitive function after a day of sun exposure. But I would argue that a lot of us probably swim indoors a good portion of the year and are just as sleepy as our Southern-living friends. Between getting in the pool early and working indoors all day, some of us may not even see much of the sun for months at a time. If you are lucky enough to swim outdoors, be sure to wear sunscreen (duh) and try to swim later in the afternoon, or early morning when the sun is not directly overhead.

Intensity: It may seem counterintuitive, but most people tend to feel more energized after a hard workout than an easier one. After a high-intensity workout, there’s an effect that fancy scientist types call “excess post-exercise oxygen consumption” or, more commonly, after-burn. Essentially this is the extra energy your body requires to repair muscles and return your body back to resting state. If you have ever struggled to sleep the night after a hard race, despite being physically exhausted, you have experienced this feeling of after-burn. It can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 24 hours for your body to return to resting levels after an intense workout, so in this case you can use this to your advantage. Save the long endurance session for the evenings or a weekend day when you are able to head back to bed afterward. At times when you have to swim early in the morning, plan a sprint session or race-pace intervals to take advantage of the increased alertness of the post-intense workout recovery period.

Nutrition timing: Swim practices always seem to be scheduled earlier in the morning than anything else—so early that most of us don’t feel we have time to eat breakfast before diving in the pool. A swim workout after 12 hours of fasting leaves us depleted and ravenous, which sets us up for a post-breakfast crash once we get out of the pool. Try to get some calories in before or during the swim if you don’t have time to eat much—even if it is just a piece of toast or glass of juice or sports drink. Include some protein afterward to balance out your carbohydrate intake, since a solely high-carb breakfast is the express train to nap time. (Michael Phelps eats a five-egg omelet along with his double stack of chocolate-chip pancakes.) The timing of caffeine intake can also have a big effect on your fatigue levels during the day. I need to have at least a small coffee when I get up, but by the time I am done with a morning swim practice, the caffeine has long worn off and I’m ready for a nap. So on the days I swim really early I try to save drinking a big coffee for afterward; then I can be productive for the rest of the morning. Exercise itself should act as enough of a stimulant—it’s not like you will fall asleep in the pool. It is when you are sitting still at a desk for hours that you are at risk of the fatigue creeping in, so that’s when to indulge in a little caffeine boost. If you are a coffee drinker, try to sip it throughout the morning instead of taking in one large dose all at once, which can create a big spike and an even bigger subsequent crash. Small amounts spread over a longer time—even if the total intake is less—will maintain more consistent levels of alertness throughout the day.

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One-Hour Workout: Mid-Week Tempo Run http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/08/17/one-hour-workout-mid-week-tempo-run Wed, 17 Aug 2016 14:00:51 +0000 http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/?p=57454

Every Wednesday we’ll feature a different coach’s workout you can complete in 60 minutes (or less!). This week’s run workout comes

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Every Wednesday we’ll feature a different coach’s workout you can complete in 60 minutes (or less!).

This week’s run workout comes from coach Andrew Dollar of Nashville-based FTP coaching (Ftpcoaching.com). “This tempo workout is a great middle of the week session for a long-course triathlete,” Dollar says. “It requires activating one’s upper end speed at the beginning of the workout and then maintaining an easier, yet still aggressive pace on tired legs for the primary part of the workout.”

One-Hour Workout: Mid-Week Tempo Run

Warm-up
10 min building to marathon pace

Main Set

10 min as 30 sec strides, 30 sec recovery. Run the strides between 5K–10K pace.

30 min at half marathon pace

Cool-down
10 min easy

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Get the best out of a triathlon coach http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/08/17/get-the-best-out-of-a-triathlon-coach Wed, 17 Aug 2016 13:00:55 +0000 http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/?p=48302

Photo: Swim Bike Run Photography

Triathlon can be an expensive lifestyle, with its international racing destinations and plethora of luxury gear. Add in the cost of

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Photo: Swim Bike Run Photography

Triathlon can be an expensive lifestyle, with its international racing destinations and plethora of luxury gear. Add in the cost of coaching — which I highly recommend — and you are making a pretty significant investment in your health and fitness. Get the biggest bang for your buck by following these guidelines:

Establish a set of reasonable goals.
Before you even start training with “coached” workouts, be sure you’ve effectively communicated your realistic set of goals, as well as predictable hurdles that may interfere with your ability to achieve them. You should then expect coaching that is tailored to your specific needs, assuming you’ve paid for personal coaching.

Don’t go rogue with your training schedule.
The training schedule that your coach writes for you assumes a pretty specific level of recovery leading into key workouts in order to maximise fitness gains and avoid injury or illness. As such, it is best to follow the exact schedule as written or proactively contact your coach to discuss alternatives when you know that life may interfere, or you foresee other issues in completing workouts. Even the very best athletes can falter when it comes to making well-intentioned adjustments to their own training schedule.

Handle the curve balls.
Say Mother Nature decided she didn’t want you to complete that 20-minute bike time trial after work as your coach had scheduled, so you just fit it in after your threshold run the next morning. Not so fast—you should have asked your coach for specific guidance on rescheduling, because by doing it immediately following a challenging run, you’ve compromised the value of doing a time trial in the first place. Your coach would’ve likely looked at your schedule of upcoming workouts, then factored in your personal goals, areas of strengths and weakness, and availability, and then offered his best suggestions, likely replacing an already scheduled workout of lesser importance.

Pro tip: One hard and fast rule to remember is to rarely try to make up missed workouts—just let ’em go. A well-planned training regimen is not a fragile house of cards, and one missed workout (even a big one)will not cause the house to come tumbling down.

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Predict Your Goal Run Race Pace http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/08/17/predict-your-goal-run-race-pace Wed, 17 Aug 2016 12:00:52 +0000 http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/?p=44409

© Delly Carr / Sportshoot

Coach Vince Lombardi once said, “The will to win is nothing without the will to prepare.” He was dedicated to teaching his players to

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© Delly Carr / Sportshoot

Coach Vince Lombardi once said, “The will to win is nothing without the will to prepare.” He was dedicated to teaching his players to prepare with countless repetitions and was relentless in his quest for perfection. I am willing to bet he would have made a great triathlon coach.

As you add on the run kilometres, start to think about how they will translate to your pace off the bike. I’m continually amazed by athletes who don’t understand why they didn’t run their goal pace in a race but have never run that pace in training. Unfortunately, there is no magic pill that turns your 5K pace into your half-marathon pace on race day.

In order to determine your goal race pace, we’ll explore a few ideas for race simulation tests. These workouts are typically my favourite days of the month for my athletes: This is where the rubber meets the road and we get to see all the hard work paying off.

Olympic Distance
Looking To Finish Strong
Moving up in distance can be daunting, so I keep it simple: After a fairly hard bike (similar to the pace you’ll hold in the race) of 29 + 35 kilometres, run off the bike for six kilometres. Build each 1.5K, starting out moderate for the first, speeding to moderate-hard for the next 1.5K, and then finishing 10–15 seconds faster per 1.5K for the last two. The average pace of this six kilometre run should be very close to your 10K pace on race day.

Gunning For A PB
After a very hard bike effort (40–50 kilometres at Olympic race effort/HR/ power), you’ll run 5 x 1.5K on a measured course or track with one minute recovery. The pace you hold for these repeats will be very close to your 10K pace on race day.

Half Ironman
Looking To Finish Strong
Solid swim set (2000-metre tempo swim or main set of 2000), followed by:
❚ Easy 40–45 minute run, aerobic, not stressful.
❚ 3–3.5 hour ride. First 30 minutes are Zone 1, building to Zone 2, then the last 30 minutes are going to be Tempo–Zone 3 or 85/100 perceived effort.
❚ Second run: 45 minutes building each 15-minute effort—first 15 aerobic (Z2), second 15 in Z3, last 15 hold Z3 or bump to Z4 (if you can!).

Gunning For A PB
Start with a 40–45-minute run to warm up (8-10K). This should be done at long run pace or Zone 2 HR.

Next up is a specific half-Ironman bike workout. For those of you looking to complete the bike in 2:30, for example, the bike workout will be:
❚ 15-minute warm-up
❚ 2x(40 minutes at Ironman effort/20 minutes at half-Ironman effort/pace/ HR/power).
❚ The second run would be 3K moderate-hard effort, 3K of a very hard effort and 3K of your best effort to finish off the workout.

In my experience, the overall pace of the second run will pretty much spot-on tell you what your run pace will be for the race. The best part of this workout is that you’ll be able to tell pretty quickly if you rode too hard, under-fuelled or nailed everything perfectly.

*If you are looking to finish between 2:30–3:00 you would want to change the bike to be around 3×45’ at Ironman effort/15 minutes at half-Ironman effort. The run workouts would remain the same.

Ironman
At least twice during an Ironman buildup I like to see a long race simulation:

4,000–5000-metre swim followed by biking up to 95 per cent of the distance, and then a solid two-hour run off the bike. Typically this pace off the bike, with the pacing and fueLling on the bike being spot-on, will give you your ironman run pace.

For those of you who are time-limited, another option would be to do a solid swim workout of 3,000 yards at race pace, then an 130K or four-hour ride at 75–85 IF (Zone 3 HR), followed by 1.5K repeats at Zone 3 intensity. You can build these 1.5K repeats all the way up to 6–8 reps.

Both of these workouts are great confidence boosters, if they go well. And if they don’t go well, then you know you need to work on the pacing, the fuelling or both.

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Pro Perspective: Swim Advice To Heed & Ignore http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2016/08/17/pro-perspective-swim-advice-to-heed-ignore Wed, 17 Aug 2016 11:00:20 +0000 http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/?p=41615

2013 Ironman Cozumel

I asked a few of the top pros in the sport, as well as some up-and-comers who have made significant swim gains, to give me the best and

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2013 Ironman Cozumel

I asked a few of the top pros in the sport, as well as some up-and-comers who have made significant swim gains, to give me the best and worst swim advice they’ve received:

What piece of advice has significantly improved your swim?
Leanda Cave: “From my experience, clenched fists is the best drill. It helps you feel the water with your forearms and use them as a lever to pull through the water instead of relying on your hands.”

Sarah Haskins-Kortuem: “Don’t fight the water! Stay smooth and relaxed.”

Timothy O’Donnell: “Don’t look around the first 50–100 metres after the start. Focus on establish- ing a position in the field.”

Mitchell Kibby: “Have your coach or a friend take video of you in the water so you can see what you are doing. The difference between what you think you do and what you actually do will often surprise you!”

Alicia Kaye: “Always keep your stroke rate high to stay close to the feet in front of you and get the best draft.”

Gwen Jorgensen: “Focus on your catch by keeping your elbows above your wrist.”

What popular advice do you recommend ignoring?
Lisa Bentley: “‘Distance per stroke’ is tough for an unsupervised non-swimmer. They just end up gliding too long, dropping the elbow, and developing a bad stroke.”

Alicia Kaye: “Don’t let anyone tell you to pull in a giant ‘S’ shape under the water.”

Jarrod Shoemaker: “Someone once said that it’s good to focus on the back half of your swim stroke as you will not have any- body hitting your hands during an open-water swim!”

Gwen Jorgensen: “I have been told so many times to basically just chase the clock.”

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