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TOP 3 EXERCISES FOR STRENGTH & POWER

N ° 279/JULY 2007

WORLD’S LARGEST TRIATHLON MAGAZINE

7 0 0 2 RRA E

IS

ADVENTURGE

RADECAIND?

E T E X U S S I G N I N I A R T PLUS: TRAIL-RATED: TOP OFFROAD RUNNING SHOES

5

STEPS TO XTERRA SUCCESS

TIME OFF: HOW MUCH IS TOO MUCH?

triathletemag.com

BREAK IT DOWN: 5 FREESTYLE ESSENTIALS CLIMB (AND DESCEND) LIKE A MOUNTAIN GOAT

TOP XTERRA

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ON THE BIKE

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Š2007 Giro

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WHAT TO WEAR WHEN EVERY SECOND COUNTS. ALSO APPROPRIATE WHEN EVERY 1/1,000 OF A SECOND COUNTS. It’s pretty unbelievable when you stop and think about it. Assemble 200 top professional road racers or a bunch of elite triathletes from all over the globe, each with a different physiological makeup and genealogy, and look at their differences. Some weigh 125 pounds, some weigh 195. Some, like Ironman champ Normann Stadler, are muscular like sprinters. Others, like ProTour madman Levi Leipheimer, are skinny like climbers. Some sport dark hair and sideburns, others shave their heads as bald as their legs. Some speak Japanese, others English. Yet when it’s time to time-trial, their performances are, for all intents and purposes, damn-near identical. Boggling, isn’t it? Sure, some have a bad day and finish many minutes behind the field average. But by and large, when you look at the top finishers, there’s often not much more than a second or two separating their times. So not only does every second count. But when it comes to pushing against the clock with everything you’ve got, every nanosecond counts. It’s crazy. Different minds, different bodies, different bicycles, different pedaling styles, different motivations, different managers, different diets, different uniforms. But remarkably similar elapsed times. Now, knowing this, don’t you think these athletes would embrace every possible advantage they could find? You bet your sweet little bippy they would. So what would you say if we told you that the Giro® Advantage 2™— the helmet pictured here, based on the famous Giro Revolution — is the winningest time trial helmet in history? You don’t have to answer that. Because it was rhetorical. But with a track record like that, is there any wonder why so many top pro riders, teams and triathletes use the Advantage 2? You don’t have to answer that one, either. It was rhetorical, too. Now, don’t get the wrong idea. Stats like these don’t come by accident. Our Giro designers and engineers have been shaping and reshaping, testing and retesting the Advantage 2, in one iteration or another, since 1985. They’ve had this remarkable aerodynamic form inside a wind tunnel so much that it’s not even funny. Refining and refining. Tweaking angles, massaging curves and adjusting fit to uncover every opportunity to coax out speed and eliminate drag. And thanks to this kind of tireless dedication and attention to detail, the Advantage 2 (available this summer) also meets Consumer Product Safety Commission standards. So not only is it a good idea to use when every 1/1,000 of a second counts. It’s also a good idea to have up there on your ol’ melon should your superhuman effort to shave those precious nanoseconds go a little bit pear-shaped and send you into a barricade. Which wouldn’t necessarily mean you would lose, either. Because you’ve got the Advantage 2. You can recapture those precious nanoseconds by saddling back up and turning hard against those pedals again. So get on it, Speedy. The clock is ticking.


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Normann St win 54:05:00

8:11:56

4:18:23

2:55:03

NEW RECORD

thanks Normann “Norminator

machine”

At the end of the machine” wai Bike session the “Norminat ted alone the or arriv pursuers with his 7 minutes al of the first lead.

WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP

21.10.2006 - KAILUA-KONA, HAWAII - TRIATHLON

WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP


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Gusmini Comunicazione

adler and Kuota Kalibur together...again!!

www.kuota.it


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CONTENTS

JULY ‘07 No. 279 Cover: Olivier Marceau

Photo by Rich Cruse

TRAINING

On the Cover: • TOP 3 EXERCISES FOR STRENGTH

COLUMNS

LAB RABBIT by Lance Watson

124

XTERRA ZONE by Trey Garman

154

LANE LINES by Matt Fitzgerald

130

BIKE OF THE MONTH by Jay Prasuhn

156

THE BIG RING by Jim Rutberg

134

ON THE RUN by Dave Scott

136

SPORT NUTRITION by Marni Rakes MS, CISSN

140

SPEED LAB by Tim Mickleborough, Ph.D.

142

TECH SUPPORT by Ian Buchanan

144

FIRST WAVE “St. Anthony’s” by Robert Murphy 16 “Wildflower” by John Segesta 18

DEAR COACH by Roch Frey & Paul Huddle

146

STARTING LINES by Mitch Thrower

20

TRAINING FEATURE by Paul Regensburg

150

EDITOR’S NOTE by T.J. Murphy

22

MAIL CALL

24

CUTTING EDGE by Rebecca Roozen

158

GEAR BAG by Jay Prasuhn

162

RACE CALENDAR

190

TINLEY TALKS by Scott Tinley

208

& POWER

136

• IS ADVENTURE RACING DEAD?

108

• TOP OFF-ROAD RUNNING SHOES

74

• 5 STEPS TO XTERRA SUCCESS

56

• TIME OFF: HOW MUCH IS TOO MUCH?

142

• 5 FREESTYLE ESSENTIALS

130

• CLIMB (AND DESCEND) LIKE A MOUNTAIN GOAT

134

DEPARTMENTS

CHECKING IN 31 Tri news; Medically speaking; Second take; Training tip; Reality check; 70.3 series; Gear page; Point-counterpoint; Pro bike; Gatorade athlete; North America Sports; Club profile; Travel talk; Light read AT THE RACES 171 Ironman Arizona, XTERRA South Africa and more 6 J U LY 2 0 0 7

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M


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Number of triathlons Cameron Widoff has won since turning pro in1992:

125

Number of triathlons in which Cameron will compete in 2007:

30

Estimated number of days he has ridden in his career using Shimano components:

7,300

Number of Shimano failures in those 7,300 days:

0

Estimated number of kilometers he will ride Dura-Ace in 2007:

26,350

Number of years Dura -Ace components have been in production:

35

Total estimated number of gear shifts Cameron will execute in 2007:

105,400

Number of years Shimano has been using cold forging technology:

42

Number of materials used in 7800 - series Dura-Ace:

25

Number of Dura -Ace cassette combinations:

6

Number of new patents for 7800 - series Dura-Ace:

17

Pro Triathlete Cameron Widoff

FC- 7800 HOLLOWTECH II CRANKSET Technology: Race -Proven Advanced Hollow Forging Chainring Technology: Patented Stiffness: Maxed, Increases Rider Performance Strength: Superior

DURA-ACE 7800 EQUIPPED TRI BIKE Gruppo Rigidity: Magnificent Gruppo Engineering: Methodical/ Works Together Gruppo Shifting: Super Smooth Gruppo Durability: Outstanding

SL- BS78 BAR END SHIFT LEVER Action: Positive, Crisp Design: 10 -Speed Compatible Motion: Ergonomic

CS - 7800 10 - SPEED CASSETTE Cog Materials: Titanium, Aluminum Hyperglide: Genius Engineered Durability: Unrivaled

Š2007 Shimano American Corp.


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-ELANIE -C1UAID  TIME 84%22! 7ORLD #HAMPION ¥ 2ICH #RUSE84%22!

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Y OU COULD GIVE UP 'O HOME TAKE A NAP /R JUST SLOW DOWN )F YOURE MORE THE PERSEVERING TYPE AND WANT TO MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR TRAINING

YOUR FOCUS YOUR SEASON DONT FORGET YOUR '5 4HE ORIGINAL ENERGY GEL IS STILL THE BEST AND THE CHOICE OF TOP PROS WHO REFUSE TO SETTLE REFUSE TO GIVE UP "E SMART #HOOSE '5 02/5$ 30/.3/2


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CONTENTS

FEATURES THE CAVEMAN’S SEMI-SECRET XTERRA TIPS

TRIATHLON MEETS TINSELTOWN

56

96

Twenty years ago Nautica Malibu Triathlon race director Michael Epstein started a tiny triathlon in West L.A. Today, Hollywood A-listers run the show

5 steps to off-road success

By Conrad Stoltz

By Rebecca Roozen THE LONELINESS OF THE OPEN-WATER SWIMMER

80

A relatively unknown, but growing, sport, long-distance open-water swimming bears a striking resemblance to its three-sport cousin as it thunders toward Olympic inclusion in 2008

By Richard Martin TALES FROM THE XTERRA CRYPT CLIFTOPIA

65

Why Gary Erickson—triathlete, ultracyclist and owner of Clif Bar—is glad he turned down 60 million dollars

74

Running-shoe and hiking-boot companies have lashed together some of the best and most resilient shoe designs for off-road triathletes

By T.J. Murphy 14 J U LY 2 0 0 7

By Rebecca Roozen WILDFLOWER-ED

100

8000 triathletes make the pilgrimage to Wildflower’s 25th anniversary

By T.J. Murphy TRAILBLAZERS

86

Five top athletes share their worst spills

By T.J. Murphy OVEREXPOSED

108

Adventure racing struggles with a lack of big events & sponsorship money

By Brian Metzler T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M


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FIRST WAVE

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T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M


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PRE-RACE RITUAL Robert Murphy

By the early-morning light, age-group athletes loosen up in Tampa Bay

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

before St. Anthony’s Olympic-distance triathlon in St. Petersburg, Fla. For more on St. Anthony’s, please turn to page 171. T R I AT H L E T E M A G A Z I N E 17


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PRE-RACE TENSION Athletes prepare to charge into Lake San Antonio at the 25th Wildflower triathlon in California on May 5. For more on Wildflower, please turn to page 100. 1 8 J U LY 2 0 0 7

John Segesta/wahoomedia.com

FIRST WAVE

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M


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T R I AT H L E T E M A G A Z I N E 19


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STARTING LINES No.279 • July 2007

Courtesy Mitch Thrower

Board of Directors Mitch Thrower Matthew Barger Russ Crabs John Duke Jean Claude Garot Steven E. Gintowt Bill Walbert Publisher John Duke Chief Executive Officer John Duke Associate Publisher Heather Gordon VP, Sales & Marketing Sean Watkins Chief Financial Officer Steven E. Gintowt

There and back By Mitch Thrower On the way to my first triathlon of the season early this morning, I was tired. I’m still not sure why it’s just so hard to get out of bed sometimes. After all, life, and the day that lies ahead, are almost always much more exciting than a bunch of blankets and a pillow. The spectacular and scenic Lanikai Triathlon had a 6:45 a.m. start on the other side of Oahu, and the alarm went off at 3:45 in the morning. I immediately began to ponder what locations might be conducive for a late-afternoon race and how much we need an After-work Triathlon Series. The drive to the race with my friend Andy was filled with concerns of exactly how out of shape I was going into this season, mixed with thoughts of how beautiful the morning dawn is over the tropical island—combined with the hope that no press would catch a revealing shot of my work- and winter-inspired Mitch-elin Tire. Cresting the mountains of the island and descending toward the windward side of Oahu, I realized why they film the television show Lost here. I arrived at the race, racked my bike, took a few photos then headed to the starting line that someone’s toe had drawn in the sand. When the starting horn sounded we were off into the windwhipped water where a few jellyfish had a small surprise for the first swimmers to hit the turn buoy—ouch. To the ocean and back. On my way to T2 on the bike I started to feel the burn in my legs, and this made the run challenging, but I made it to the finish line with a smile. To the pavement and back. Later that day, my friend Zoltan, who is an actor on Lost, asked me if I was going to relax, and I said, “Actually I want to go on another ride.” I was only on the island for a few days, and as the obsessed triathlete I wanted to swim, bike and run as much as I could during my stay. He responded with a Hungarian accent, “That’s not fun; that’s communism.” Since the comment came from someone who trained for 10 hours a day on a national team for Hungary when it was a communist country, I could appreciate his sentiment. But there is something very different, and very important, about triathlon as a sport, as it is a sport we choose to do. We decide to become triathletes, and we decide to stay triathletes. To live the triathlon lifestyle is a daily, if not hourly, decision that we continue to make and affirm. As a result of that choice we are able to go to a place inside that lifts up our souls just a little bit higher. Every race, every starting and finish line strengthens us. Simple translation? The psychological and physical benefits of triathlon are cumulative. At your next race you may find yourself on the starting line considering the fact that you’re about to simply go Train Smart, there and back on the swim, bike and run. Somewhere along the way, however, you will realize that something very special happens to you on your way there and back. Mitch Thrower In this moment, you’ll smile. mthrower@triathletemag.com

2 0 J U LY 2 0 0 7

Editor-in-Chief T.J. Murphy, tjmurphy@triathletemag.com Managing Editor/Interactive Editor Cameron Elford, cam@triathletemag.com Senior Editor Jay Prasuhn, jay@triathletemag.com Associate Editor Rebecca Roozen, rebecca@triathletemag.com Photo Editor John Segesta, johns@triathletemag.com Associate Interactive Editor Brad Culp, brad@triathletemag.com Creative Director Kristin Mayer, kristin@triathletemag.com Graphic Designer Oliver Baker, oliver@triathletemag.com Contributing Writers Matt Fitzgerald, Roch Frey, Paul Huddle, Tim Mickleborough, Scott Tinley, Barry Siff Contributing Photographers Delly Carr Robert Murphy Medical Advisory Board Jordan Metzl, M.D., Krishna Polu, M.D. Advertising Director John Duke, johnduke@triathletemag.com Production/Circulation Manager Heather Gordon, heather@triathletemag.com Customer Service Linda Marlowe Senior Account Executive Sean Watkins, Cycling & Events seanw@triathletemag.com Senior Account Executive Lisa Bilotti, Nutrition, Apparel, Footwear & Auto lisab@triathletemag.com Marketplace Sales Laura Agcaoili, laura@triathletemag.com Office Assistant Shannon Frank, shannon@triathletemag.com Accounting Vicky Trapp vicky@triathletemag.com

Triathlete founded in 1983 by Bill Katovsky & Jean Claude Garot Triathlon Group North America Offices 328 Encinitas Blvd., Suite 100, Encinitas, CA 92024 Phone: (760) 634-4100; Fax: (760) 634-4110 www.triathletemag.com Attention Retailers: To carry Triathlete in your store, call Retail Vision: (800) 381-1288 SUBSCRIPTIONS: Your satisfaction is important to us. For questions regarding your subscription call (800) 441-1666 or (760) 291-1562. Or, write to: Triathlete, P.O. Box 469055, Escondido, CA 92046. Or, e-mail: subs@triathletemag.com. Back Issues available for $8 each. Send a check to Triathlete Magazine Back Issues, 328 Encinitas Blvd., Ste. 100, Encinitas, CA 92024 and specify issues requested, or visit www.triathletemag.com. Publication Mail Agreement #40683563. Canadian mail distribution information: Express Messenger International, P.O. Box 25058, London BRC, Ontario, Canada N6C 6A8 Submission of material must carry the authors’/ photographers’ guarantees that the material may be published without additional approval and that it does not infringe upon the rights of others. No responsibility is assumed for loss or damage to unsolicited manuscripts, art work or photographs. All editorial contributions should be accompanied by selfaddressed, stamped envelopes. Printed in the USA.

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M


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EDITOR’S NOTE SONIC CSX CARBON AEROBAR

Rich Cruse

>> Mulit-weave Carbon Fiber >> Ultralight at only 328 grams

AERODRINK HYDRATION STSTEM

The Astley Belt (and other sources of inspiration) By T.J. Murphy

>> Hydrate efficiently in the aero position

QUICK STOP CARBON BRAKES

>> Lightweight and ergonomic. 110 grams

ELITE CARBON KAGE

>> Sculpted design and only 18 grams World-Class Triathlon Components

seek and continually find great inspiration from the extremists in the endurance community. Everest climbers, adventure racers, runners who complete 100-mile trail races, triathletes who specialize in double and triple Ironmans and that handful of triathletes who have participated in deca-Ironmans. I love reading about what a climber’s life is like waiting out a storm at Camp 4 on Everest, elevation 26,000 feet, desperately trying to exact some comfort out of a mug of tea. Or of a RAID team member’s account of fighting off sleep deprivation on day four of an adventure race. The longest race I’ve ever been in was in 2005, when it took me more than 15 hours to complete Ironman France. That seemed plenty long to me, and I honestly wonder if I’ll ever summon the courage to enter another Ironman. To me, the rise of the 70.3 series and the growing power of Olympic-distance triathlon are welcome trends. Another interesting trend, and focal point of this issue, is the success of the XTERRA series and off-road triathlon in general. I vividly recall the optimism behind the spurt of adventure racing in the 1990s, when adventure-racing magazines began popping up on newsstands and Triathlete magazine devoted a column to the sport. It was the next great challenge, it seemed; the frontier one might seek out after moving from marathons to triathlons and on to adventure races. But, as we explore in this issue, adventure racing has fallen short of the great expectations once placed upon it. That said, XTERRA offers the perfect alternative for those of us drawn to adventure but

I

lack the time or esoteric skills to tackle a multi-day adventure race. With XTERRA, you arrive in a place like Lake Tahoe, set up camp, burst into the water and onto the trails for a matter of hours, and by the afternoon you’re lounging about in flip-flops with an ice-cold beer in your hand. This makes sense to me. Not that adventure racing will ever truly die. It will continue to awe and inspire us, just as it did more than 100 years ago when the sport of pedestrianism took the form of marvelous six-day races: The athlete who walked the most miles in six days took home enough money to live on for a lifetime. Pedestrians adhered to lifestyles that included: sleeping three hours or less a night, walking and running up to 50 miles a day (day after day) with a training diet rich in muttonchops, dry bread and beer. In a strange precursor to gels, pedestrians liked calf’s foot jelly and eel broth during their races, and when they hit the wall during a match were known to drink hard liquor to shake it off, and if that didn’t work they went for electric shock treatment, mechanical scarification and/or drugs like morphine. The Astley Belt match, held Feb. 27 to March 4 in 1882 in Madison Square Garden, was one for the ages. Inflamed with patriotic duty, British pedestrian phenom Charles Rowell blazed, passing the 200-mile point in 35:09 and walking 353 miles in three days. Rowell blew it on the fourth day, however, when he accidentally drank a cup of vinegar and was forced to quit. His countryman, George Hazael, went on to win in a world record of 601 miles over six days, a bittersweet ending for Rowell. I loved reading about these guys in Lore of Running, by Tim Noakes, and then snapping the book shut, saying, “Wow, those guys were nuts,” and cheerfully heading out for a twohour run.

WWW.PROFILE-DESIGN.COM T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M


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SWIM WITH THE BEST

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MAIL CALL

Tinley Talks feedback I

do not often take it upon myself to write to a magazine. Okay, I do not ever write to a magazine. In this case, though, I felt I had to. Scott Tinley’s story on the “Warriors in winter” (April 2007) really moved me. You see, I am a drug addict. I spent 15 years of my life addicted to drugs. On August 4, 2001, I went into a rehab facility after hitting rock bottom. I have been clean and sober ever since. I got a job, I met a great girl and things were going well.

Then I suffered a cerebral hemorrhage (my brain started to bleed and swell inside my skull) and was hospitalized from June 23-July 25, 2005. About a quarter of my skull was removed and put in liquid nitrogen while the swelling of my brain went down. During my hospital stay, my job was outsourced and my apartment was sold. I woke up a person with disability with no home and no memory. I now suffer what is called short-term memory loss and moderate anomia. What does that mean? I wake up in the morning and I have no memory of the day before. I have no sense of north or

on Mail Agreement #40683563: Return Undeliverable Canadian Addresses to Express Messenger International, P.O. Box 25058, London BRC, Ontario, Canada N6C 6A8

TINLEY TALKS

Warriors in winter By Scott Tinley

I

hadn’t thought about my rat in awhile. He wasn’t really my rat. But I killed him on my roof. So, we had some kind of relationship. It wasn’t a fair fight, but I was young, macho and afraid that he’d climb into my daughter’s crib, gnaw away at her little toes. So I killed him, twice, as I recall on account of he lived through the night, dragging his mangled body and the rat trap he was wearing across the roof while I hid under the down covers and listened to that feint, scraping knock of wood and flesh against tar paper. And after I finally ended it all in the morning, buried him wrapped in the sports section of the newspaper, an article on Pete Rose for him to read in rat heaven, I tried to build the little guy up for his courage but nonetheless justifyed my actions under the charge of trespassing. But all I was doing was easing my own guilt for not fighting fair. Peanut butter in a slick trap from Home Depot had no purchase on anyone’s valor. I’d forgotten about that lack of decency until I thought about Jon Blais, the Warrior Poet who’s fighting a battle with ALS. I figured that Lou Gehrig’s disease was not a particularly graceful way to go down and looked for someone to blame it on. Like the way I’d tried to blame the rat for his grisly end.

That thought gave way to the notion that disease and trauma have no moral difference. The only thing true about lifealtering disease and trauma is the purity of their randomness. One year, Blais is finishing the Ironman, the next he’s in a wheelchair. One second Jim MacLaren is tooling up the Westside Highway in NYC on a new Honda CB500. Five seconds later someone has taken his leg and they ain’t giving it back. One moment David Bailey is 20 feet in the air, in complete control of his sweet young life. The next moment that life has taken him by the throat and denied everything he knew to be right and just and ordered. Who’s to blame? If you get close enough to the Rudy Garcia-Tolsens and the Sarah Reinertsens and Paul Martins, the Klaus Barths and Randy Codells and Ricky Hoyts and all those who have left their brilliance on endurance sport, you might glean an out-of-body awareness of your own proximity. It’s not that you feel closer to life or to death but only to immutable happenstance. One day you can do no wrong. The next you’re eating out of straw. There it is. Or there it was. Goodbye magnificence. Hello margins. Some people don’t like to be around mice or rats. There is that stigma of poverty and deprivation. And other people don’t want

to be shown the underbelly of human suffering. But when I think about how much living that the challenged have brought to our sport, how their magnificence has taken away our looking glasses and held them up for us to see in a different kind of sky, I think that they’ve made their story our story. The sick and the physically challenged think about loss everyday. We only think about it when we lose something. If you lose too much, will you eventually lose yourself? Or will you find the very thing you’ve been looking for? To generalize about disease is to generalize about health. I know they dance around each other like two junkyard dogs, but I can’t understand their language or their dialectic. Sport is nothing if it’s not about what the body is capable of. But the great thinkers in history never made the distinction between able and disabled. The challenge was generic, the aesthetic blind to no one save itself and what beauty was possible in human movement. Separation by class, gender, race, skill and body parts is a recent phenomenon of Modern Sport. It has achieved its discriminatory goal of allowing us to think along separate lines. Is Ricky Hoyt’s Ivy League college degree worth less because it hasn’t bought him an M3 with a leather-wrapped steering wheel? Do Rudy Garcia-Tolsen’s gold medals tarnish quicker because they were earned at the Paralympics? And will Jon Blais’s life be any less virtuous because he will not die quietly in his sleep at 91 years old? The personal narratives of those who refuse to go quietly, whether told by NBC or over the back fence, resonate because they have what we want. Not the disease or the physical challenge but the spirit that was catalyzed by a gift. Would they rather be whole? Hell yeah. But these people are different. For the most part, they have more of something good than you and I, not traded but earned. Nobody says, “Oh great, I’m paralyzed. Now I’ll find peace.” Pathos and reward, twin sons of a different mother. When Klaus Barth finally passed away last fall, he woke up in a thousand tales that will carry his kindness well beyond the lives of those he was kind to. We should all be so blessed. Or so challenged.

Triathlete (ISSN08983410) is published monthly by Triathlon Group North America LLC, 328 Encinitas Blvd., Encinitas, CA 92024; (760) 6344100. Subscription rates: U.S., one year (12 issues) $29.95 (12 issues); two years (24 issues) $49.95. Canada $51.95 per year; all other countries

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south. I remember some things, I do not remember others. I will remember something one day but not the next. It has been an extreme time. I spent a year in rehabilitation. I moved back into the home I left almost 17 years ago and went about getting my life back. I underwent speech pathology, occupational therapy, physical therapy. I have been tested by neurosurgeons, psychologists, psychiatrists, doctors. I have been poked and prodded and had things put in places things should not be put. I am alive. Not only am I alive, but I can run. I ran the 2006 Chicago Marathon with my sister. I have run Vancouver Sun Run twice and am now in my third semester of college and will be getting married in 2008. I am also training for my first Olympic-distance triathlon this coming September. I plan to do Ironman Canada in 2009. With that all said, the article by Scott Tinley truly moved me when he said, “The only thing true about life-altering disease and trauma is the purity of their randomness.” I completely understood what he meant. Here I was six years clean and sober. I worked hard at my job, and things were going well, then my freaking brain decides to expand in my head. Go figure. I have lost so much in the last year; however, within our memories are also all the reasons we have for not doing things: I am too fat, too old, too out of shape. I do not have the time What if I suck? What if I am slow? One thing I do know is I have the time. I have today. It is all I will remember, and I am going to remember it by doing something I cannot ever forget, whether it is getting married, running a marathon, doing my first triathlon or going to school. I have forgotten all the reasons not to do it. I just wanted to share that with you and to have a chance to say thanks to someone who understands. David McGuire Via e-mail

Picture-perfect race-day anxiety I

recently received this month’s issue of Triathlete magazine. As I began reading I was absolutely shocked to see a big picture of myself on page 155. Although it was very cool to see my picture in the magazine, my friends and I got a good laugh that my picture is tied to an article about

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© 2007 TREK BICYCLE CORPORATION

WWW.BONTRAGER.COM

UPGRADE


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MAIL CALL

race-day anxiety. Now, among my tri friends I am known as the picture of raceday anxiety. Thanks for the surprise and for putting out a great magazine month after month. Keep up the good work. Brandon Stark Phoenix, Ariz.

Let’s hear it for the boys A

lthough I really enjoy your magazine I felt the “Much ado about manliness” article (Point-Counterpoint, April 2007) was an insult to men. Even the pro argument made men out to be horny, violent idiots. Maybe men would like a men’s-only tri so that men who are nervous about doing their first tri would go for it if they didn’t worry about looking bad in front of the excellent female athletes that are at most races. Or maybe men would like to do an event that raises money for prostate cancer (no one thinks a women’s-only

26 J U LY 2 0 0 7

breast-cancer event is sexist). Or maybe men just want to hang out with other guys and have some fun without inviting the girls. This doesn’t have to be a sexist, violent, stupid event; it might just be a good time for the guys. I love the mag, but let’s be fair about things. Ian Lane Huntington Beach, Calif.

Burning the wick at both ends I

was anxious to read the latest installment about the whole Clydesdale/Athena debate, of which I am one, until I saw the cover of the April issue. The Clydesdale/Athena debate will inevitably be on hold for a month while the other debate rages on. The other debate being the difference of opinion over whether or

not female athletes are being portrayed as sex objects. I almost can’t wait for the whining. I also couldn’t stop laughing about the comment regarding the exploitation of naked elephants on the cover of the notorious swimsuit issue (June 2006). There is at least one other person out there who has a sense of humor about this. I, for one, do not care if there is a division for triathletes my size; it’s that ultracompetitive 34-39 age group that’s killing me! As for the other issue, if you look real close, there is in fact a Cervelo P3 Carbon on page 48 and a Giro Advantage 2 on page 136. Let’s all get past the self-image hang-ups and appreciate the athletic human form in all its shapes and sizes. And in the interest of fairness, I volunteer to pose with the elephant in next year’s swimsuit issue. Kenny Schwabik Via e-mail

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www. fi n i s i n c . c o m


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MAIL CALL

y husband, Sgt. Maj. G.A. “Butch” Vasquez, a Marine currently serving his third tour in Iraq with Combat Logistics Battalion 15 (CLB-15), requests only two things to be sent to him: letters from home and the latest issue of Triathlete magazine. My husband is a wonderful husband, father and friend, but he is also a Special Forces Marine and a marathoner, ultramarathoner and triathlete. His ultimate goal is to come home from the war and train and complete his first Ironman. Thank you for keeping his spirits elevated while he is at war! He lives to bike, swim and run. For now he will have to make due with reading about others accomplishing their goals. Angie Fortune Oceanside, Calif.

Courtesy Angie Fortune

Letters—and magazines—from home M


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CHECKING IN

John Segesta/wahoomedia.com

• TRI NEWS • MEDICALLY SPEAKING • SECOND TAKE • TRAINING TIP • REALITY CHECK • 70.3 SERIES • GEAR PAGE • POINT-COUNTERPOINT • PRO BIKE • GATORADE ATHLETE • NORTH AMERICA SPORTS • CLUB PROFILE • TRAVEL TALK • LIGHT READ

CHECKING IN

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

T R I AT H L E T E M A G A Z I N E 3 1


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OLYMPIC TRIATHLON CHAMPION HAMISH CARTER RETIRES Olympic champion and triathlon great, Hamish Carter of New Zealand, has retired from the sport of triathlon. After months of hinting the end was near, Carter made his official retirement announcement on New Zealand television in March. “The lifestyle of a pro athlete is fantastic, traveling around the world and chasing the dream,” said the father of two. “But it has to come to an end.” The 35-year-old Kiwi enjoyed a remarkable career, which culminated with his gold medal at the Athens Olympic Games in 2004. "The key to success is failure. If I didn't have Sydney to wallow in, I wouldn't have won in Athens. It [Sydney] was the worst day of my life, but one of the most important," he added. In over 14 years of racing, Carter won 12 World Cup races, a bronze medal at the 2002 Commonwealth Games and three world-championship medals (two silver and one bronze) to secure his reputation as one of the sport’s greatest athletes. The temptation to continue heading into another Olympic-qualifying year 3 2 J U LY 2 0 0 7

was huge, but Carter weighed the options and made his decision. He will, instead, join New Zealand entrepreneur of the year Rod Drury in his new online accounting-systems business. Carter says the chance to take up what he calls his first real job was an exit strategy he could not turn down. He describes the opportunity as another big dream to fulfill, and says he made the decision after in-depth discussion with his wife Marisa and coach Chris Pilone. “The friendships you make in our sport are incredible, and I think these friendships and fun times I've had I will remember for much longer than any results or races won or slost.”

CHALLENGE FRANCE TO DEBUT IN 2008 The second race to be licensed by TEAMChallenge, organizers of the popular Quelle Challenge Roth, will be a half-Ironman-distance race near Strasbourg, France, on May 25, 2008. Challenge France will be set in the town of Niederbronn-les-Bains, 45 kilometers north of Strasbourg and the center of the renowned nature park of the northern Vosges region. Race weekend will also include an expo and a kids’ triathlon on Saturday.

The swim will be one 1.9-kilometer lap of Moutherouse Lake, which is19 kilometers from Niederbronn-lesBains. The slightly hilly, two-lap, 90kilometer bike will be staged on the roads through the nature park of the northern Vosges. The 21-kilometer run will take place over two challenging loops on forest roads and trails. “Triathlon in France is a megatrend, and the Quelle Challenge Roth last year had more than 500 French participants—by far the largest group of international athletes,” organizers said. Organizers are expecting 1200 athletes, racing as individuals and teams. Registration opens May 25, 2007, at challenge-france.com.

R&A CYCLES AND FIT MULTISPORTS ANNOUNCE PRO TEAM R&A Cycles in conjunction with FIT Multisports is proud to announce its 2007 R&A/FIT Multisports Professional Triathlon Team. The newly formed team is small but powerful, consisting of: Jonas Colting of Sweden, an Ultraman world champion and silver medalist; Ragnar Alne of Norway, a Devilman champion and Norwegian national champion; Paul Fritzsche of the USA, third place at Ironman Korea; Kristy Gough of the USA, third at Ironman UK; and Eva Nyström of Sweden, first at the Långdistans-SM triathlon. The R&A/FIT Multisports Team is looking to make its mark on the 70.3, Ironman and Tri One O One circuits. While podium finishes are the team's focus, sending as many athletes to the Ford Ironman World Championship, in Hawaii, is the ultimate goal. For more information contact Jason at R&A Cycles at j or at 718-636-5242. T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

Jay Prasuhn

CHECKING IN TRI NEWS


5/15/07

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TM

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Introducing the biggest stride in sports drinks in over 30 years. New Accelerade, specially formulated with protein. Proven to increase endurance up to 29% over your old sports drink. It’s the only one with the patented 4:1 carbohydrate to protein ratio. So while others are fading, you can stay strong.

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ACCELERADE, ACCELERADE SWEAT SMARTER, and DON’T FADE are trademarks of Mott’s LLP. © 2007 Mott’s LLP.

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Learn more about the science of 4:1 at accelerade.com


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CHECKING IN MEDICALLY SPEAKING

Is glucosamine a useful supplement for triathletes? By Dr. Jeffrey Sankoff, MD, FACEP, FRCP(C) ne supplement that has passed the rigorous tests of science, at least for some, is glucosamine. Glucosamine is an amino sugar, a molecule synthesized naturally in our bodies from a sugar and an amino acid. Glucosamine is the precursor for all nitrogenated sugars in the body, one of which is glycosaminoglycan, an important component in the cartilage that lines our joints. Osteoarthritis (OA) is a chronic degenerative disease that results in the loss of cartilage in the larger joints, specifically the knees and the hips. It has been postulated that taking glucosamine supplements could help

O

delay or even reverse the course of OA by promoting cartilage health. Scientific studies have been conducted to evaluate this hypothesis. A summary of the findings: • Glucosamine is safe and does not cause any side effects when taken in the usual supplement doses (<2000 mg per day) • In patients with OA, glucosamine supplementation for more than three months does reduce pain and improve mobility, albeit modestly • Glucosamine does not prevent the development of OA

• Glucosamine has never been shown to enhance recovery to joints after injury or surgery • Glucosamine has never been shown to prevent injuries of any type To answer the original question then, one must consider who is asking. For those who suffer from OA, glucosamine supplements may have a modest beneficial effect. For the average triathlete without OA, the use of glucosamine, while not detrimental, does not confer any scientifically proven benefits whatsoever. Train hard, train healthy.


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C ? 9>; B B? ; @ED;I ¸ M ? D D ; H ( & & , < E H : ? H E D C 7 D M E H B : 9 > 7 C F ? E D I > ? F /0'.0)'

From the ITU World Championships, to Olympic silver, to breaking the tape at Kona, Michellie Jones trusts her vision to Barracuda. With Positive Pressure frames, a huge visual field and leak-proof performance, Barracuda goggles provide confidence to win in all types of water. Barracuda professional goggles. Visualize success. B A R R A C U D A P R E D AT O R

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CHECKING IN SECOND TAKE

INTRODUCING THE NEW

PERFORMANCE SYSTEM. The revolutionary new 3-step system that supports optimal per formance by providing athletes the power to Energize, Refuel and Rebuild.

Energize • Now with C2 MAX higher-octane carb blend • Fortified with 200mg of sodium, the main electrolyte lost through perspiration

Refuel • Now with C2 MAX higher-octane carb blend • Provides 27g of fastabsorbing carbs

John Segesta/wahoomedia.com

Rebuild New Ready-to-Drink Recovery Shake • Loaded with 13g of high-quality protein for muscle repair and 34-40g of quickdigesting carbs for glycogen restoration

Missoula, Montana’s Linsey Corbin digs deep on the punishing bike course at Wildflower. Corbin was one of 8000 who turned up to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Wildflower Triathlon Festival at Lake San Antonio in Central California May 5-6.

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CHECKING IN TRAINING TIP

John Segesta/wahoomedia.com

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Hill training for strength By Troy Jacobson well-conceived bike-training program includes a variety of factors, such as aerobic-foundation development, spinning technique/neuromuscular conditioning, increased power output at threshold and strength training specific to cycling. This last component, strength training, can be addressed by doing hill repeats. Hill repeats are an advanced training method that should be done only after a fitness base is well established. If done too early in the season or training cycle, when muscles, tendons and ligaments arenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t yet prepared, hill repeats can lead to injury and overtraining. There are many hill-repeat variations, but one of the more effective is as follows: Step 1: Warm up for 15-20 minutes at an aerobic heart rate and at a cadence of 90-100rpm. Step 2: Find a hill on a low-trafficked road with a 7- to 10-percent grade

A

at least 400 meters long, or one that will take you at least one to two minutes to ascend. Step 3: Start at the bottom of the hill in a gear that will be difficult to sustain all the way to the top and which will allow for an average cadence in the 50-60 rpm range. Step 4: While seated, start climbing aggressively from the bottom and hold the effort to the top or to the end of your interval. Step 5: Once at the top, roll back down the hill and do the next rep as soon as you are at the bottom. Do the planned number of reps. Step 6: Cool down for 15-20 minutes. Each rep should be done seated and with a big effort. Start with four reps and build to a total of 10 reps over several weeks, adding a rep or two each week. Make the following day a recovery day. Done properly, your legs will gain incredible cycling-specific strength from doing hill repeats that will carry over to faster bike splits on race day. A former pro triathlete and creator of the Spinervals Cycling DVD series, coach Troy Jacobson can be reached at coachtroy.com.

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CHECKING IN REALITY CHECK

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Can you really become dehydrated from drinking joe? By Troy Jacobson 4 0 J U LY 2 0 0 7

illions of Americans roll out of bed every morning and immediately run to the coffee pot for a cup of the bean juice. The simple act of enjoying the hot, bitter beverage has been traced back to the ninth century. Athletes, too, have known about the performance benefits from the caffeine contained in coffee and other beverages for years. Research has indicated that caffeine mobilizes fat stores, thereby helping to spare muscle glycogen during endurance training and competition, resulting in improved performance. In addition, caffeine acts as a central nervous system stimulant, increasing the alertness and focus of the athlete. However, a commonly reported drawback to ingesting caffeine as a performance aid has been dehydration, but this assertion has since been proven untrue. A June 2002 article written by a researcher and professor at the University of Connecticut, Lawrence E. Armstrong, and published in the International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism, concluded that caffeine is no more a diuretic than water itself, and more recent research supports that finding as well. The bottom line is that athletes can enjoy their joe without fearing increased dehydration. As with most things, practice moderation in regard to quantities consumed and youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll be buzzing down the road to fast splits. A former pro triathlete and creator of the Spinervals Cycling DVD series, coach Troy Jacobson can be reached at coachtroy.com.

M

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CHECKING IN 70.3 SERIES

Triathlete: Did you enjoy the off-season? How much of a break do you give yourself when you’re getting prepared for an early-season race like Oceanside? Kate Major: I did a little racing after Kona. I headed back home (Australia) and did some local sprint races. Nothing big, just some fun stuff. I gave myself a little training break in December and then slowly picked things up after New Years. Once I got back to California (Major spends most of the season in San Diego) I was ready to go. Triathlete: What do you have planned for 2007? Any chance you’ll shift your focus to the 70.3 series, or is your sole focus Kona? KM: It’s all about Kona. It’s been that way from the start. I’ve always enjoyed doing shorter races, but for the most part I use them as training races. Kona has always been my dream race. I don’t think that’s going to change anytime soon.

Triathlete: How has the addition of a world championship at the 70.3 distance changed the pro racing scene? KM: I think it’s a great stepping-stone for a lot of people. It allows athletes to race at a high level without doing Ironman. It also gives people the opportunity to alternate between Ironman and a shorter distance from year to year. Things are definitely more competitive at that distance.

Checking in with Cali 70.3 champ Kate Major By Brad Culp

ustralian Kate Major has been a Kona contender since she burst onto the Ironman scene in 2003. After taking a short off-season break (to get married), Kate kicked off this season

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with a bang by winning the Ford Ironman 70.3 California. Triathlete caught up with the Ironman champion shortly after her big win in Oceanside, Calif.

Triathlete: Who do you think has an advantage at the 70.3 distance? Is it the short-course speedsters or the Ironman endurance freaks? KM: It’s hard to say. Short-course athletes have been doing well at 70.3 races, but a lot of Ironman athletes who I know use 70.3 as training for the longer event. The long-course athletes tend to go into 70.3 events a little fatigued, while some of the sprinters go in pretty fresh. But it’s hard to say. Those ITU girls are so fast that it’s hard for anyone to race with them.

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

John Segesta/wahoomedia.com

Triathlete: Is there any chance we’ll see you at Clearwater this season? KM: Well, I planned on doing it last year, but things just didn’t work out after Kona. I plan on doing it again, but it all depends on how my body recovers after I get back from Hawaii. If everything works out, I’d like to do both.


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© 2007 Bell Sports, Inc.

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ESTABLISHED 1954. PROVEN EVER SINCE.


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CHECKING IN GEAR ROUND-UP FSA NeoPro Crankset $850 Debuting at the Tour de France under Team CSC (and on one lucky FSA employee’s bike at Ironman Coeur d’Alene), the all-aero, all-carbon NeoPro has a one-piece spider that fills in the gaps with light carbon for a totally aero profile. It features the same hollow carbon-fiber crankarm as the K Force Light and comes in a massive range of crankarm lengths, from 170 to 180 (yes, 180) in 2.5-cm increments, with a 54/42 chain-ring configuration, and is slated early to weigh in at under 1,000 grams. It comes with FSA’s premium ceramic MegaExo bottom bracket. fullspeedahead.com

FRS $2.29 Free Radical Scavenger has been underground for the last year with a killer liquid concentrate comprised of plant-based antioxidants that help neutralize free radicals (which have been linked to cancer, weakened immunity, premature aging and low energy) before they cause cellular damage. So much for underground now that seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong is on board. In conjunction, FRS debuted a ready-to-drink canned beverage with all the antioxidant qualities in orange, lemon-lime and low-calorie orange, peach-mango and wild berry flavors. frs.com

Genuine Innovations Nano $13.49 What’s so big about the Nano? How about it’s the only CO2 head that fits in that tiny space for disc race wheels? Now you can leave the mini-pump and go with a CO2 head that will bail you out on the course on race day. genuineinnovations.com

Trimble AllSport GPS $7 per month

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CW Performance Speedsuit ($199) and Tri Short ($55) A pair of German athletes came together to create Hannulink, a Web-based retail shop featuring top brands. One such Germandesigned brand is CW, with two new items: the Speedsuit, built for non-wetsuit swims like Kona, is comprised of thin, elastic, Teflon-coated DesoTech, cut for restriction-free movement. The CW Tri Short has flatlock seams for minimized chafing, an elastic waist with drawstring and a Swiss-made antibacterial chamois for comfort on the bike and easy movement on the run. hannulink.com

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

Images courtesy the manufacturers

Trimble’s AllSport GPS program turns your cell phone into a training GPS. We’ve been testing AllSport GPS on runs and rides and have enjoyed taking just one tool for training. Throw it in an armband or jersey pocket and scoop up all the data; it gives your running-mile pace, bike speed and total training distance at a glance. The post-workout data is uploaded instantly to your online account (no computer connection needed), providing valuable analysis of course, distance, pace, elevation and a 3D view on Google Earth. It’s everything a GPS tool is, minus the tool. allsportgps.com


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CHECKING IN POINT-COUNTERPOINT At issue this month: Hard-core vs. fun-core. Should serious athletes receive special treatment on race day, or should everyone just lighten up for Pete’s sake? Have an issue that needs point-counterpoint treatment? Visit triathletemag.com and e-mail us.

All I want is a bit of elbowing room By Cameron Elford ou probably aren’t familiar with the name Cornelius Horan, but Horan, a defrocked Irish priest, is the kiltwearing nutjob who leapt from the crowd and tackled Vanderlei de Lima—the Brazilian athlete who was leading the marathon at the 2004 Athens Olympics—just three miles from the finish. Knocked off his rhythm and rattled by the encounter with the bizarre interloper, de Lima shook off the brief incident as best he could but, reeling from the shock, he stumbled to the finish and wound up dropping to third for the bronze medal. Now, few of us have fallen victim to a race-day attack on such an unsettling scale, but practically all of us have been thrown off, perhaps even frustrated, by a fellow competitor (and I use the term here loosely) as he or she lollygags through the race without a hint of urgency, content in the serene, peaceful state of being a fool. Not that these peaceful fools don’t have a place in sport. They do. I just wish their place wasn’t next to me in transition, as they leisurely pull on socks and blow kisses while I try to move through the bedlam with maximum efficiency. Of course, these fools or, perhaps in kinder terms, those folks who take a more recreational, less–goal driven approach to the sport, do more than simply get underfoot in transition. Indeed, they cause all manner of chaos on race day, from the swim start to the awards banquet. Case in point: wave starts. As much as 2000-plus athletes simultaneously charging into the water can be in and of itself tumultuous (at least until the pretenders detonate following their 300-meter opening sprint of glory), mass starts are vastly preferable as they spare those of us who commit to doing freestyle for the entire swim from having to pick our way through the tail end of earlier waves

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while contorting our bodies to avoid vicious, yet unintended (I’m assuming), whip kicks and flailing elbows to the family jewels from happy-go-lucky breaststrokers who muddle through the opening leg without a care in the world (except, of course, for the looming swim cut-off, which they will surely miss). On the flip side, having a hoard of fast-moving type-A triathletes swimming up, and over top of, the slowmoving “just-for-fun” crowd must bug out even the most hardened funster. Yet still these folks are out there at every race, pushing the boundaries of hydrodynamic research in an endless quest for the least efficient stroke. And on it goes, from the swim to the bike to the run—slow people, and, worse, oblivious slow people—for whom a triathlon is a fun day at the beach rather than a chance to reward oneself for the hours or training and an opportunity to test one’s physiological limits, whatever they may be. But I concede there’s no easy solution. Everyone has a right to enjoy the sport in his or her own way. But for Pete’s sake, next time you stop to hug on the run or adjust your helmet’s sun visor on the bike, take a look around would ya? There just may be someone on your ass—and he, or she, ain’t stopping.

Let’s lighten up a bit, folks By Rebecca Roozen f I’m not mistaken, we have the choice of checking the appropriate athletic-status category on our registration forms: professional/elite or age grouper. If your black or blue pen marks the little box next to professional/elite, you’re pretty hardcore. Hardcore athletes are privileged with a separate corral in transition, separate start times and possible paychecks at the finish line. And then there are those who think they’re hardcore. But if you haven’t made the cut and aren’t carded

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as a pro, turns out you’re just like the rest of us age groupers. So you might as well loosen up and have a little fun. Many of us funsters have fallen victim to the wannabe top-tier triathletes attempting to slice two seconds off last year’s time. Before the race even starts. By all means, get in front of the line in our age-group wave prior to the swim start. But watch the toes, and what’s with the pushing? Take it easy type-As. I’m fine hanging tight to the far, outside edge in the water. You can have your primo spot. And what’s with all the arm flailing and mouth flapping in transition? So I stopped to tie my shoe. Isn’t that what transition is for? There are hundreds and sometimes thousands of competitors in one event. If you’re going to get all bent out of shape that I got in your way leaving T2, maybe you should consider scouting out your own 70.3 miles, timing yourself and racing it solo. I didn’t realize your name was carved into the slab of concrete on the way out. It may look as though we’re lollygagging, but most of us are pushing ourselves just as hard as you are, oh great ones? You’re right; there are a few who aren’t. Some race to raise money; to celebrate the fact they have the use of their bodies; to accomplish an endurance event never thought possible because of a previous battle with obesity. And they’re smiling because of it. Not every case is so severe, but it doesn’t have to be. Anyone who’s paid his or her entry fee and plays by the rules has the right to compete in, I mean participate in, triathlon. We apologize ahead of time if our supportive family and friends annoy you. But your fussing is annoying, too, and taking your frustration out by aggressively plowing over first-timers is just childish. I’m certain our lack of grunts, groans and mouth foam don’t make us inadequate triathletes. Just happier people. Yes, your determination is fiery. And your over-trained body is rock hard. But your wayward ways on race day might be a clue that it’s time you hardcore type-As get your heads checked. Either that, or step it up a notch, earn your pro status, quit your crying and play with the big boys.

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M


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• St. Anthony’s Triathlon • Ford Ironman 70.3 Califor nia • Ford Ironman World Championship •

© 2007 S-VC, Inc.

Prepare for everything your race is going to hand you.

•Wildflower Triathlons • Ford Ironman Arizona•For store locator, go to www.EnduranceFormula.com

• Whirlpool Steelhead 70.3 Triathlon • Accenture Chicago Triathlon • Ford Ironman Wisconsin • 5430 Long Cour se Triathlon • St. Croix Ironman 70.3 •

• Ford Ironman Coeur d’Alene • Buffalo Springs Lake Ironman 70.3 • Timberman 70.3 Ironman • XTERRA • Vineman Ironman 70.3 •


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CHECKING IN PRO BIKE

Becky Lavelle’s Felt DA Carbon

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Jay Prasuhn

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Also catching our eye was the new PD-7810 Dura-Ace pedals that only Lavelle, pro cycling’s Discovery Team and other Shimano-sponsored procycling teams have been running until recently, when they became available to the rest of us. The new pedal has a similar design to the existing pedal, with a bit more flare at the axle and a stainless-steel platform replacing the plastic one on the previous Dura-Ace pedal. A Frame Felt DA Carbon, 54cm B Fork Felt DA bayonet integrated fork/steerer, 80mm stem C Aerobar Vision R-bend D Groupset Shimano Dura-Ace 10-speed, 13-26 cassette E Chainring Shimano Dura-Ace, 53-39 F Wheels Shimano Carbon 50 front, Pro disc rear G Tires Continental Competiton, 700c x 21mm tubulars H Pedals Shimano PD-7810 I Hydration Podium Quest J Saddle Fi:zi’k Arione Tri 2

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

Jay Prasuhn

alifornia’s short-course and 70.3 star Becky Lavelle runs one of the aerodynamically cleanest setups in the sport. The DA Carbon’s aero prowess has been well chronicled, with the rear brake out of the wind and the front bayonet and cable run making for a clean presentation to the wind. To keep the aero theme rolling, she runs the dual-chamber Podium Quest hydration system (in lieu of water bottles), which sits within her Vision R-bend cockpit. Astute Felt fans will also notice she has a singleposition aero post instead of the stock post with a twoposition clamp point. A new sponsorship has Lavelle completely Shimanoequipped, from the Dura-Ace groupset to the Pro rear disc and Carbon 50 front wheel, to her TR 50 W Tri shoes.

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CHECKING IN GATORADE ATHLETE/NORTH AMERICA SPORTS

SUZY BACAL Tucson, Ariz.

By Marni Rakes s a former collegiate swimmer, Judge Suzy Bacal began running as a means of losing the unwelcome 40 pounds she had gained after college. “I hated running at first, but my mom ran (and still does) and convinced me to not give up.” After purchasing a bike to

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Philadelphia Insurance Companies’ “Team PHLY” renews with North America Sports hiladelphia Insurance Companies will continue to be the commercial insurance partner for Ford Ironman 70.3 California, Ford Ironman Arizona, Ford Ironman 70.3 Florida, Ford Ironman Coeur d’Alene, Ford Ironman USA Lake Placid, Subaru Ironman Canada, Ford Ironman Wisconsin and Ford Ironman Florida. In renewing their sponsorship, Philadelphia Insurance will continue sending members of Team PHLY to race in Ironman events in addition to receiving promotional opportunities through 2009. “We are excited to renew our partnership with North America Sports,” said James J. Maguire, Jr., president and CEO. “We pride ourselves on executing

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with the same discipline, focus and hard work essential to training for an Ironman in our everyday business.” What was initially a hobby for a few fitness-conscious and somewhat-competitive executives has grown throughout the company. These more experienced athletes have been able to lend guidance and support to others interested in taking up the sport, and to date there are over 50 employees who have either completed or are training for a triathlon. The Philadelphia Insurance Wellness Program has been expanded to include 5Ks, 10Ks and walks to include more employees. Another positive effect of this initiative is that close to 50 percent of employees belong to a gym.

ten to soap operas all day, and I never have to go to jail.” Starting her morning at 5:15 a.m. with an hour run with her two dogs, she finishes an hour bike ride with just enough time to make it to work at 8 a.m. Her lunch break is often a 90minute hard run with her training friends, prior to finishing her day with a civil lawsuit or an eviction trial. As a competitive ultra-runner, Bacal is proud to add a 24-hour track run to her racing resume and an amazing two-time finish at the Ultra Crown King 50. “I did my last Crown King 50 one week after Ironman Malaysia. I think I love racing too much.” While her favorite race is Kona, Bacal is a familiar face at the Tucson Triathlon 3-race series. “Having done every race in the series (minus one due to Kona), since the event started in 1994, I hope other triathletes share the same love for triathlons as I do. Consistency is key.”

Philadelphia Insurance believes that in addition to triathlon being a great physical workout and promoting camaraderie and teaching the discipline required to succeed in business, it connects with the community. Philadelphia Insurance employees have raised over $200,000 for charities through their participation in Ironman events. “Training for a triathlon takes a lot of discipline, hard work and a strong work ethic. All three of these are key qualities we look for in our employees and potential employment candidates,” said Deborah Sutton, Senior Vice President of Operations at PHLY and four-time Ironman finisher. “Sponsoring the North America Sports Ironman events and promoting triathlon training as part of our Wellness Programs has allowed us to attract and retain many great employment candidates.” Team PHLY athletes will be competing at a number of road races and triathlons during the 2007 season, including Ford Ironman Florida 70.3, Ford Ironman Coeur d’Alene, Ford Ironman USA Lake Placid, Ford Ironman Wisconsin and Ford Ironman Florida. For more information please go to phly.com. In operation since 1962, PHLY designs, markets and underwrites commercial property/casualty and professional liability insurance products incorporating value-added coverages and services for select industries.

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

Courtesy Team PHLY

GATORADE ATHLETE OF THE MONTH

advance her active lifestyle, triathlon was on the horizon for Bacal, a self-described very competitive person. As a full-time Justice of the Peace, Bacal proved herself as a top agegroup triathlete ever since her second triathlon. “During my first triathlon, in 1994, I was told that the time in transitions didn’t count. So, I sat down and ate a sandwich.” Having completed an impressive 12 Ironmans, including three Hawaii Ironman finishes and an amazing five Ironman finishes within 12 months, Bacal considers herself an addicted triathlete who is simply mediocre at three sports. Although she jokingly admits that work gets in the way of her training, she absolutely loves her work and believes she has the best job in the world. “As a former lawyer, I was too stressed. So, I decided to be a judge in the county court. The best part of my job is that I am able to lis-


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Pearl Izumi® syncroFloat® 2 with Seamless Race Upper WeAreNotJoggers.com

©2007

Pearl Izumi


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CHECKING IN CLUB PROFILE/TRAVEL TALK

product discounts with sponsors, prize giveaways at each monthly meeting, race support and social events. But the club’s strength derives from the strong camaraderie among its members. TDH is comprised of a diverse group of triathletes with varying experience

Race: Escape from Fort De Soto Triathlon Race directors: Fred Rzymek and Joe Fernandez Location: Fort De Soto State Park in St. Petersburg, Fla. Date: April 14, 2007 Distance: 1/2-mile swim, 10-mile bike, 4-mile run Years running: 21 Water temperature: 72 degrees F Air temperature: 80 degrees F Area club: St. Pete Mad Dogs Participants: 1,000 Host hotel: Holiday Inn Sun Spree (at the end of the Sunshine Skyway Bridge) Best local restaurants: Hurricane’s and Skyway Jack’s Best libation: New World Brewery, YBor District, Tampa

ur 2007 multi-sport journey began in St. Petersburg, Fla. at the Escape from Fort De Soto Triathlon. Race director Fred Rzymek has been running this event for 21 years. “This event sells out every year,” says Rzymek. “Beginners find this to be a blast, and experienced triathletes can still go at it fast.” This unique location just outside of St. Petersburg is the bomb, with many area attractions to enjoy. The Fort De Soto Army post was active from 1898-1910 and guarded Tampa Bay. Today, the Fort is all about recreation with miles of beautiful beaches, hiking trails, camping, fishing and pure family fun, minus the rumor that there’s a nude beach. The race course is closed to traffic, which keeps the race safe. The April weather is usually perfect for race day, and the post-race food, drink and classic Southern hospitality tie it all together. It was a tough race and city to escape. H&W usmultisport.com

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U.S. Multi-Sport and race director Fred Rzymek hangin' with the big guns. 5 2 J U LY 2 0 0 7

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

Courtesy Hubie and Warren

In the past three years, Tucson Desert Heat has gone from 0 to 94, members that is. Like most tri clubs, TDH provides its members with organized cycling and running workouts every weekend, various training clinics throughout the year, training plans,

and competitive levels. Members range from those who are Kona qualifiers to those who aren't afraid to incorporate a good bottle of wine and cheese into their training regimens. Last year, 13.2 percent of the club members qualified for the Ford Ironman World Championship in Hawaii. Two members are USAT AllAmericans, one is ranked number No. 3 in his USAT age group; two members qualified for the Boston Marathon; another led the 2007 Ironman New Zealand after the swim leg. And beyond individual accomplishments, the club as a whole does community work. In December of 2006, TDH donated 190 pounds of food to the Community Food Bank of Tucson. TDH supports charitable causes such as the Breath4CF, which provides opportunities for kids with Cystic Fibrosis and had a club member who worked with the Janus Charity Challenge to fund raise $3,500 for the ALS Association of Arizona while completing Ironman Arizona.

Courtesy Tucson Desert Heat

Tucson Desert Heat Triathlon Club


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Attack with intimidating speed. Join the team. Use what the pros use.

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Famous last words n May 1862 as American transcendentalist and author of such monumental works as Walden and “Resistance to Civil Government” Henry David Thoreau lay dying of tuberculosis, a disease that had slowly siphoned away his strength over a period of years, relatives exhorted him to make his peace with God, to which Thoreau allegedly replied, “I didn’t know that we had quarreled,” before ultimately mumbling the words “moose” and “Indian,” likely in reference to a paper on the Maine woods he was work-

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ing on shortly before his death. At the time, many of Thoreau’s friends were deeply affected by the author and philosopher’s serene acceptance of death, but many have since followed in Thoreau’s footsteps in terms of the generosity of spirit they have demonstrated despite acute adversity. In the early fall of 2004, Dave Smart, a good friend and training partner, who pulled me through countless Ironman-training miles and was always quick with a kind word and thoughtful gesture, passed away as a result of metastasized melanoma. I’ve written about Dave before in the intervening three years since his death, which came just weeks after the birth of his daughter Ashlyn to Dave and wife Robin, but while grappling with the existential anxiety of his fate, it’s possible to find a measure of joy and meaning in his, and our own, often equivocal relationship with sport and the meaning it ascribes to our lives. To that end, here are a few of the lessons Dave imparted and which I’d like to pass along for consideration. Enjoy the process, not just the outcome: Dave was a computer guy at a bank and had just completed his accounting designation yet, perhaps incongruously, his appetite for nonsense was insatiable, and while he trained hard, he always took joy in his training—almost annoyingly so at times, incessantly flashing his mischievous, boyish grin through the sweat, grime and pain of a long ride. Reward yourself before and after: Dave is the only guy I’ve ever met who would order beer not only after a 200-kilometer ride but also the night before an Ironman, yet still race 10 hours on the day. Be up for anything, or nothing: After, or while, putting in the miles, it was easy to convince Dave to tack on a

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bit extra at the end of a workout until we had discovered how far was too far; or tackle a killer climb on minimal training; or determine who could eat the most ice-cream sandwiches on a ride; or find out just how many people could be crammed into a porta-potty. Indeed, Dave always maintained a sense of adventure and good-natured credulity, which many top performers in the sport, including Triathlete columnists and coaches Paul Huddle and Roch Frey, point to as a key to finding success and maintaining balance. When things go sideways, don’t lose your cool: Having a race-day plan is important, but equally important is the ability to make changes on the fly if things don’t work out as anticipated. In 1998, at Ironman Canada, Dave suffered a nutritional meltdown on the bike, but instead of panicking he calmly pulled over to the side of the road, let his heart rate drop and caught up on his calories. He then went on to qualify for Kona and thump me by well over an hour—I sometimes wonder if my day would have worked out better if I, too, had had the confidence to deviate from my plan and join Dave for some mid-race R&R. Always make the best of it: When things went bad—in a race or in life— Dave could always find a chink in the armor of whatever demon taunted him and turn unwelcome drama into a positive, not only for himself but also for those around him. Over the past three years, Dave’s wife, Robin, has followed suit, turning Dave’s death, at just 33 years of age, into a vehicle to do good through the Smart Foundation, a nonprofit group that boosts awareness of sun safety and skin cancer (a condition to which triathletes can be especially prone) and raises funds to fight the deadly disease. For more information on the Smart Foundation, please check out thesmartfoundation.ca.

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Be up for anything, or nothing: After, or while, putting in the miles, it was easy to convince Dave to tack on a bit extra at the end of a workout until we had discovered how far was too far...

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eastonbike.com photo: Rich Cruse

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Rich Cruse

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Step 1: It’s all about the bike-run base Success at XTERRA racing begins early in the year during the base-training phase—long before the season gets rolling. The bike: The most important bike workout during base training is a weekly long, hilly ride in the mountains, which, due to logistics, most athletes prefer to do on the weekend. While it may not be practical for most athletes to spend hours on the bike, especially during the late winter and early spring, when the weather can be questionable at best, I usually do a total of three to five rides a week at 50-75 percent of max heart rate—so regardless of the time you have available, do your best to focus on longer, moderate rides during the base phase, and keep these rides hilly, if possible. This will help build the strength that will form the foundation of your XTERRA success later in the year. When climbing, I focus on maintaining a high cadence (of at least 90 RPM), ensuring smooth power delivery and keeping a relaxed posture. The run: Run training is much the same. Early in the season, schedule two or three months that include a weekly long, easy run of about 90 minutes plus two additional aerobic runs. Again, during the base phase, the braver I feel the more hills I will tackle, mostly keeping my hear rate below 75 percent. These long, moderate sessions are the key to a long, successful season.

Step 2: Build sport-specific strength Once you have a good base, you may want to whip yourself into shape with some XTERRA-specific training. This little gem was

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handed down from the Legend to the Caveman. (Read: From XTERRA and mountain-biking great Ned Overend to yours truly.) Bike hill repeats: Find a climb that’s about 10 minutes long. It should be tough, loose and technical. After a good warm-up, ride the climb at about 5-10 beats below your anaerobic threshold (AT). After 5-10 minutes of climbing, turn around and head straight back down. Hit the second repeat at race pace/AT, then, on the third repeat, grab the climb by the neck and rip its legs off—that is, ride the climb at your maximum sustainable effort. And following each of the three repeats, downhill like you would in a race (but always ride within yourself) so you are able to embrace the feeling of starting the next climb with a pair of shocked and jarred legs filled to the brim with lactic acid. Run hill repeats: As for whipping the running into shape, I believe hill repeats are the best way to build strength and incorporate quality. This is probably my most important workout of the week. • Warm up and find a nice hill. Dirt or grass is good. Dirt or grass in the shade is best • Run 6 x 2-minute hills at AT, jog down • Run 5 minutes at AT on the flats • Run 6 x 1-minute hills at AT, jog down • Run 5 minutes at AT on the flats • Limp home If you persevere through the entire workout, this run will be 80 minutes or more, so bring your A game.

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Step 3: Learn how to burn Although the distances in an XTERRA race are usually close to those of an Olympic-distance event, most of us spend a lot longer out there than we do when racing road triathlon. Thus, it’s important to be sure we are able to tap into myriad sources of fuel while, at the same time, working to improve our power-to-weight ratio, since any additional weight can slow you down on the killer XTERRA climbs. To tap into your fat-burning ability, try this approach. I learned it while racing in France in the 1990s, somehow forgot about it, then bumped into it again this year (hence all the veins). This works best during base phase, and only do it occasionally—and not when you are feeling fragile. And definitely not before a big race. • Skip breakfast in favor of just a coffee (no sugar or cream) • Do a long, slow run (drink as much water as you want) • Upon completion of run, have some more coffee and try to delay breakfast for a while • Feast • Expect some serious fatigue later in the day What this does is deplete your body of glucose, which in turn forces you to burn fat more readily. Apparently, the feast that follows your run will accelerate your metabolism, which I can’t tell for sure, but it sure feels good.

Step 4: Hone your technical skills

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Rich Cruse

No matter how fit you are, if you don’t have a grip on a few key mountain-biking skills you can end up in a tough spot on race day. Here’re a few of the most important technical skills. 1. Look far ahead. The faster you go, the further ahead you should look. 2. Look where you want to go. Know you are going there, and don’t doubt it for a second. Even just a glimpse at that tree on the side will steer you straight into it. 3. Brake early. Fast riders don’t brake in corners. They brake before the corner, let go of the brakes, just flow through the turn and exit quickly. It’s hard to get your mind around that one, but once you get the feel of it, dragging the brakes through a turn will feel as wrong as going to work in pajamas. 4. Easy does it. A smooth pedal stroke and steady balance is key to climbing the loose stuff. Choose your line before you start the climb, then commit. Move your weight to the nose of the saddle, pick a light gear and turn the pedals with loving care; the rear tire will love you for it and grip nicely. 5. Learn to un-weight your wheels over obstacles (and eventually bunny-hop them). Example: You’re barreling down Tunnel Creek A FEW SAYINGS I’VE ACCUMULATED (XTERRA Tahoe) at close to 40mph. The trail is smooth, fast and straight. • “Hesitation, devastation.” Enough said. But every 300 yards there is a big water• “It isn’t a ride till there is blood.” Falling hapbar diagonally across the road. If you pens often and that’s okay. It is very rare to just slam into that thing it will send you actually get hurt—usually it’s just a scrape or flying over the bars and into the trees. two and brownie points at the office. Relax. You have two choices: 1. Slow down Don’t fear crashing, but don’t be a reckless drastically and negotiate it in a civilized rider, either. manner. Lose bags of time; 2. The right • “Speed is your friend.” Due to the gyroscopic choice: Thrash that thing at max speed, forces of nature, a slow-moving cyclist falls jump right over it and power on. How? over more easily than a fast-moving cyclist. Just before you actually hit the waterThis saying can be applied to many situations, bar, do a well-timed bunny-hop and fly be it a nonchalant way to explain how you just clean over the hump. This technique cleared the five-foot drop or describe someapplies to any smaller obstacle and is a one’s approach to the post-race party. sure-fire way of making heaps of time. Also works well for floating over tire-

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Step 5: Become mechanically inclined (at least a little) Okay, we agree, it’s a heck of a lot easier to drop your bike off at the shop and let the pros tinker with it to ensure everything is running smoothly; however, if you’re out on the trail you may not have this option, so being able to make a few key mechanical repairs for yourself could save you a long walk home. Here’re a few of the most important wrenching skills for off-road triathlon. • You should be able to change a tire with your eyes closed and one hand tied behind your back. Non-negotiable. • You should be able to fix a broken chain, so be sure to bring the right tools for the job (for more on chains, see Tech Support on page 144 of this issue). • You should be able to replace a derailleur hanger. Rear derailleurs get eaten by hungry rear wheels, jumping sticks and predatory rocks. It’s easy to replace and shouldn’t take more than 90 seconds. • You should be able to set your brakes. Rubbing brakes happens from time to time. V-brakes rub and disk brakes rub. They are both quick and easy to set. Look and learn. • You should know what tire pressure you run which tires on which courses. It sounds complicated and for the pros, but the right tire pressure and the right tire choice is probably the most important mechanical aspect of your bike. Get a floor pump with a gauge, and go experimenting. To help me out of most trailside mechanical jams, I always carry the following tools: • A tube wrapped in thick material (funny things happen in a saddlebag) • CO2 or a reliable pump. Unless you’re trying to win the race, the latter is always safer • A good multi-tool. Apart from the obvious Allen keys, it should have a chain-breaker

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• A Golden Link. Enables you to repair a chain quickly. In theory, anyway • A spare derailleur hanger Conrad “The Caveman” Stoltz has been racing triathlons for almost 20 years and has been a star on the XTERRA circuit since 2001 and has won the XTERRA world championship twice. In addition, Stoltz represented South Africa at both the Sydney and Athens Olympics. For more, visit conradstoltz.com.

Courtesy Conrad Stoltz

eating rocks at speed, jumping up curbs, finessing over muddy roots, hopping over fallen logs. Bunny-hopping is easy to learn: Load the bike by pushing it into the ground and crouching with your body (while standing on the pedals). At just the right moment, release the load by quickly shifting your weight upwards (think pounce) and pull up on the bars and pedals. Timing is what its all about, so practice, practice, practice.

• The better your skills, the softer you can run your tires. And yes, softer is faster 95 percent of the time. I run 28-30 psi on most courses. A softer tire grips better, jumps and jutters less over loose stuff, gives a smoother ride, doesn’t get sidewall cuts as easily and believe it or not rolls more quickly over broken terrain • For most dry courses a two-inch-wide tire with many short knobs works well. The muddier the course, the narrower the tire and taller and fewer the knobs. A narrower tire requires higher pressure to prevent snake-bite flats • Tubeless is undoubtedly king • A new tire grips like crazy. If you don’t want to spring for a new set of tires before every big race, have a set of racing tires and a set of training tires

Rich Cruse

A FEW RULES OF THUMB ABOUT TIRES

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What drives you?


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All photographs courtesy of Clif Bar

CLIFtopia Why Gary Erickson—triathlete, ultra-cyclist and owner of Clif Bar—is glad he turned down $60 million dollars By T.J. Murphy

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Recently, a reporter, Claire Cain Miller of Forbes magazine, paid a visit to San Francisco-based Clif Bar, the energy-bar company owned by longtime ultra-cyclist and (more recently) Ironman triathlete Gary Erickson. The article, “Cliff Hanger,” suggests that Miller’s attitude toward energy bars as a whole, Erickson, the Clif Bar business philosophy and the people who buy Clif Bars, rests somewhere between leeriness and insolence. Miller wrote, “Clif Bar, housed in antiestablishment Berkeley, Calif., donates money to wind farms, powers delivery vans with biodiesel and keys employee bonuses to volunteer work like cleaning up rivers. ‘I don’t want growth just for growth’s sake,’ says Erickson. Office decor: a climbing wall.” Miller continues: “It’s enough to attract a certain cult following in the so-called energy bar-category. What, exactly, is the ‘energy’ in a Clif Bar? It comes to 250 calories—the same as in five Oreo cookies. With the Clif concoction, however, you get, along with the ample sugar molecules, a heavy dose of protein and the warm feeling that comes from supporting the fight against global warming.” Miller then seems to consider that the company generated $150 million in revenue last year using a Machiavellian tactic of suckering people with an image. “Perhaps not all the customers today are sinewy mountain bikers,” Miller writes, “but they probably want to think of themselves in those terms.” When Erickson heard about the article, he smiled. “She didn’t really get us,” he said. Erickson smiled because it was a stock encounter that he and every endurance athlete has at least one experience with. It’s the neighbor that, after finding out, for example, in

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an Ironman you run 26.2 miles after swimming 2.4 and biking 112, looks at you as if you just finished a session of shock therapy. Or the doctor who doesn’t exercise and, after diagnosing you with illiotibial band syndrome or plantar fasciitis, tells you with a frown to simply stop running. Erickson is the real deal. I first met him when he was taking a break, sitting on the ground and leaning against a tree, at dawn, during a 24-hour mountain-bike race at Lake Tahoe. Most racers were on relay teams, intermixing riding and naps, but Erickson was one of only a few to take on the event as a solo rider. Erickson now has the bug for triathlon, and at the 2005 Ironman Florida cracked 11 hours. Erickson’s passion for endurance sport flows through the company: Clif Bar sponsors a variety of pro cyclists and triathletes, as well as the Luna Chix all-women’s mountainbiking and triathlon teams. The sponsorship philosophy of Clif Bar is angled toward the experience of participation as opposed to a sole focus on winning. As such, the pro teams flow from the Team Luna Chix Program and the Luna Chix ambassador program, the stated goals being to encourage women of all levels to participate in a sport, with the proceeds going to breast-cancer research. So yes, Clif Bar has a following, and the company entrenches itself in a variety of causes. But do people buy Clif Bars to get a warm feeling about supporting a green company? Or to sustain an image of being an athlete? Maybe, maybe not. But one thing is certain: people have been buying Clif Bars, and lots of them, ever since Erickson had what he calls his epiphany ride.

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While in the last year he’s frequented races like Ironman Florida and Wildflower, it was in 1990 that Erickson, during a 175-mile bike ride, thought up the idea for Clif Bar. The experience that engendered the thought is one that triathletes and cyclists can relate to: You’re out on a long bike ride and you have to eat or else you’ll bonk, but what you have to eat is beginning to taste like tree bark. “We’d been gnawing on some other energy bars all day,” Erickson recounts in his book Raising the Bar. “Suddenly, I couldn’t take another bite, despite being famished and needing to eat to keep going. It came to me: ‘I can make a better bar than this.’” Erickson was living in a garage in Berkeley at the time, working for a bicycle-seat company. He was 33. He loved biking and playing jazz trumpet, skiing and hanging out with his dog. Following his epiphany ride, he spent two years baking bars in his mom’s kitchen and preparing to launch Clif Bar, which he did in 1992. His business plan did not seek or foresee millions of dollars of income; rather, Erickson sought “enough money to do the things I already enjoyed. My goal wasn’t to become a millionaire. I wanted to make a comfortable salary, create a quality product, employ great people, work on causes I believed in and contribute to the community.” Erickson’s intuitive hunch was a good one. Clif Bar got off to a speedy start in 1992, yielding $700,000 in total sales. The revenue swiftly catapulted into the millions. Inc. magazine routinely named Clif Bar as one of the nation’s fastest-growing privately held companies. In 1998, against the advice offered by industry experts (Clif Bar was told that a bar made for women would sacrifice half of the market), the Luna Bar was launched. Women bought them in droves, and men, apparently shrugging after reading the wrapper, have never been shy about buying them either. Clif Bar projected $1.5 million in first-year sales of Luna Bars. Instead, they made $10 million. In 1999, the company’s total revenue topped $40 million. Erickson says he has suffered when he didn’t listen to his instincts and chose to listen to experts. “When the low-carb diet was all the rage, I was being told that we couldn’t pass it up, that if we didn’t hop on the boat we’d be left behind,” he says, recalling the media-hype surrounding the Atkins’ diet. “We ended up with a warehouse full of bars we couldn’t sell. It was a great lesson. We’re reminded of how important it is to be true to our brand.”

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Erickson’s commitment to listening to his gut was severely tested in early 2000, 10 years after his epiphany bike ride. Imagine you own Clif Bar, and in the manner that PowerBar was approached by Swiss giant Nestlé (Nestlé famously bought Brian Maxwell’s PowerBar company for $400 million), you were being approached with an offer of $60 million. With PowerBar becoming part of Nestlé and Nestlé’s $65 billion dollar annual revenue, it’s hard not wonder if you’re going to be extinguished. Your banker and business partner tell you the company is going to be marginalized, swept away by advertising and marketing muscle you’ll never get close to touching as a privately held company. Clif Bar would require a grand infusion of conglomerate cash to compete. You are told to sell or die. Lawyers and bankers and business people drop in to formalize the deal. Intellectually you had been convinced that selling was the right thing to do. But the same voice in your head that drove you to start the company, the same voice that sparked choices that led to the brand of success you were looking for in the first place, that same voice is telling you, “Don’t do it. Don’t sell Clif Bar. It’s the wrong way to go.” In his book Erickson writes, “On April 17, we prepared to meet bankers, attorneys and representatives from Company X. I took a walk. We didn’t sign. We didn’t sell.” Seven years later and Clif Bar continues as a wildly successful privately owned company. In fact, they’ve outgrown their space in Berkeley and are preparing to a move to Alameda, where they will turn a former U.S. Navy warehouse into Cliftopia. Erickson explains that the buyout proposal not only triggered his gut instincts but it also forced a re-examination of why he got into the business in the first place. If there is an antiestablishment quality about Erickson and others at Clif Bar, like CEO Sheryl

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O’Loughlin, it’s that they question the big-picture logic of the standard focus on financial profit when corporations and shareholders are involved. O’Loughlin, an athlete, a mom and a businesswoman, argues that business should focus on the triple bottom line: social, environmental and financial success, rather than simply on profiteering. “Why should business strictly be about making money?” she asks. “A business exists within a community. Why shouldn’t business have a strong role in positively affecting the community?” O’Loughlin’s position marches in step with another company widely regarded as being a vanguard of social responsibility, Ben and Jerry’s ice cream. After the bills are paid (the economic mission) the social mission of Ben and Jerry’s is “To operate the company in a way that actively recognizes the central role that business plays in society by initiating innovative ways to improve the quality of life locally, nationally and internationally.” I paid my own visit to Clif Bar in late March of this year. When you walk into the reception area you can see through the door on your left a soaring office space with a climbing wall on the far end. Take the door to your right and you are led to an open-spaces hub where foot traffic from every direction flows through during the day. There’s a broad stage and several decks of casual seating. A dog named Scrubby cheerfully roams around. On Thursday mornings, the entire staff, most decked out in retro sneakers, collects here for a breakfast meeting. This is not your typical company-wide get-together. Music and laughter punctuate the agenda. One new employee being welcomed into the Clif Bar universe was break dancing. There was a presentation on Habitat for Humanity projects in the works and an invitation to volunteer to join Big City Mountaineers, a group that leads urban teenagers on eight-day excursions into the wild. If you volunteer, you’ll be doing it on company time, and you’ll be paid for it. Meeting topics attended to the core aspirations of Clif Bar: “Sustaining our brand, sustaining our business, sustaining our people, sustaining our community, sustaining our planet.” At the end, a letter from a consumer was read to the staff, and then everyone shuttled off to their jobs. Next door to the theater is a state-of-the art gym staffed with

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personal trainers. Clif Bar employees are encouraged to work out two or three times a week and are essentially paid to do it. They have spin classes, martial arts and kickboxing, among other things. Clif Bar will pay for a few of your race-entry fees every year, too. Erickson says that the costs involved in such perks are well worth it. “Yes, the people we hire have to have the skill sets they need to perform their job.” But Clif Bar also wants people who get it, who believe in what the company is about. “It’s about finding and keeping the right people, ” he says. Erickson’s success in finding the right people, and compensating them in the myriad ways Clif Bar does, is in part what drove him to withdraw from the sale in 2000. “When I came close to selling, I couldn’t look people in their eyes,” Erickson writes in his book. “I know now that I have a responsibility to the people of Clif Bar. Their well-being is critical. Businesses often talk about taking care of their people. In reality, they see this as a means to an end: The better you treat people, the harder they will work. In my opinion, that’s just another version of bottom-line thinking. People spend 2,080 hours a year at the workplace. We believe that if we provide meaningful work as well as something beyond work, people will do their jobs well and lead healthier, more balanced lives.” This language apparently strikes an odd chord to the establishment, a word brought into the conversation by Miller, and whom she apparently was talking to in her piece. But as Nick Paumgarten reported in his provocative feature in the April16 edition of the New Yorker, one out of six Americans has a 45-minute commute to work, and the number of so-called extreme commuters in the country has reached 3.5 million. An extreme commuter, according to the Census Bureau, is one who travels 90 minutes or more to work. Generally speaking, a person will accept the length and frustration of a commute to either get a better job or a better home, or both. Of course, Gary Erickson and most every other triathlete will look at that scenario and think: there’s a lot I’d could do with those three hours besides being stuck in traffic. Erickson recalls the days in which he lived in a garage as happy ones, because he was doing

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We believe that if we provide meaningful work as well as something beyond work, people will do their jobs well and lead healthier, more balanced lives.

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things with his life he enjoyed doing. A study Paumgarten refers to indicates that it’s not the commute that makes people unhappy, it’s what a commute deprives you of that makes you unhappy. Erickson has implanted this thinking into his overall business structure. In addition to incentives given to workers to use ecologically friendly transportation, like biking, walking or driving a hybrid, they have a hair salon in the building, a massage therapist, a washer and dryer and, as mentioned, a gym. The inhouse services help workers trim down the time needed for chores to open up more personal time, enabling healthier, more balanced lives and reducing carbon emissions. In fact, a fleet of Schwinn bikes stands ready for anyone who needs to go to the bank or get a cup of coffee (with your Clif Bar insulated travel mug so you don’t waste a paper cup). Widely known for its use of organic foods and farmers, Clif Bar hired a staff ecologist in 2001 and currently has an entire team (the Eco Posse) assigned to the task of reducing the company’s ecological footprint. Going green,

as companies as large as Wal-Mart have discovered, can save money. Although Clif Bar is still pressing the packaging industry to come up with a bar wrapper that will biodegrade, a biodegradable redesign of the caddy has saved Clif Bar $450,000 in shrink-wrapping per year. A conversion to 100-percent recycled paperboard saved an additional $50,000 annually—as well as 750 trees.


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This is just the beginning. The Clif Bar office has been greened, with initiatives such as recycling, use of recyclable materials, compost collection and clothing drives. Clif Bar actively seeks out business partners with similar green ethics and has launched a program to volunteer its knowledge to the races it sponsors. If you were at the Escape from Alcatraz triathlon this year and noticed an aggressive embrace of recycling and various green technologies, the goal being to conduct a major multisport event with zero ecological impact, Clif Bar was the cheerleading consultant. Erickson’s dedication to environmentally friendly policies began when he first jotted down the goals for his company. In 2007, the subject of global warming has surfaced as a mainstream concern, and green technologies, their economic benefits and economic opportunities, are beginning to take root. Recently, in an article for the New York Times magazine, op-ed columnist Thomas Friedman laid out a strong case for why we, as a country, should embrace the green movement, not just as a dogooder policy but for economic and geopolitical security. “One thing that always struck me about the term ‘green’ was the degree to which, for so many years, it was defined by its opponents—by the people who wanted to disparage it,” Friedman writes. “Well, I want to rename ‘green.’ I want to rename it geostrategic, geoeconomic, capitalistic and patriotic. I want to do that because I think that living, working, designing, manufacturing and projecting America in a green way can be the basis of a new unifying political movement for the 21st century.” This strategy, Friedman believes, will be critical in “addressing the three major issues facing every American today: jobs, temperature and terrorism.”

Clif Bar has been doing this for years, as if waiting for the world to catch on. They also seem to be a step ahead in creating products that connect with the needs of endurance athletes. As one triathlete recalls (me), after first seeing a sample plate of Clif Shot Blocks— tasty cubes of organic energy food, packed with electrolytes—he immediately envisioned how welcome they would be on a long bike ride. To which he remarked, “Why didn’t I think of that?”


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Rich Cruse

Trailblaz

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zers

Running-shoe and hiking-boot companies have lashed together some of the best and most resilient shoe designs for off-road triathletes By T.J. Murphy

La Sportiva Fireblade $90 Despite its lightweight appeal at 12.1 ounces, the Fireblade is plenty tough. The upper is made of durable mesh and bolstered by overlays of synthetic leather, all thoughtfully unified with the lacing system. The Fireblade is low-profile and smooth with a sticky rubber outsole. lasportiva.com

Reebok Premier Minocqua $90 The Minocqua has been designed for triathletes needing a balance of cushioning and stability. A cushy DMX Foam midsole provides the cushioning, and a transition bridge helps stabilize the forces of over-pronation. reebok.com

Adidas adiZero XT $80

All products courtesy the manufacturers

The adiZero XT weighs in at 10 ounces for the men and 8.8 ounces for the women, the lightest trail shoe by Adidas. This new addition also features a breathable mesh upper and adiprene-enhanced EVA foam midsole. adidasrunning.com

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New Balance 873 TR $90 XTERRA fans will like the light, sleek style of the 873 and the fast-draining technology of the mesh upper (meaning that after you cross the creek, you wonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t have to slog around with a pound of water in each shoe). The toe box is shielded by New Balanceâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Toe Protect technology, and the outsole has a good carbon-rubber bite to it. newbalance.com

Saucony Grid Omni 5 TR $95 One of the best-cushioned trail shoes of the lot, the Grid Omni 5 is loaded with a rearfoot grid, an EVA foam midsole and a tightweave mesh upper. saucony.com

Pearl Izumi SyncroSEEK 2 $95

All products courtesy the manufacturers

The heavy-duty SyncroSEEK 2 will be a favorable choice for harsh trail conditions and/or triathletes who thrash their shoes. The syncroframe, embedded through the belly of the midsole, fortifies the shoe for stability and rigorous abuse. pearizumi.com

Asics Trail Attack 3 $80 Asics employs a mono-sock in the Trail Attack 3 for a snug shrink-wrap fit. For rocky trails requiring a nimble footstrike, this is the way to go, as the better the fit the better your control. A transition bridge helps counter the twisting forces of pronation, and the shoe is well cushioned. asicsrunning.com

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Melanie McQuaid, 3-Time XTerra World Champion, with her new BMC Team Elite 01

www.bmc-cycling.com


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Merrell Fanatic $100

Trail guide 5 tips to get you started down the path to off-road running

Brooks Adrenalin ASR 4 $95 A choice cushion/stability blend is used in the Adrenalin, and this is best described as a great road shoe equipped for the trail. The ASR 4 is a good shoe for routes that combine both pavement and gravel. brooksrunning.com

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Trail running offers your body a break from the monotony and pounding incurred on the cement, and the varying terrain gives a bonus training jolt to your workout. But unless you’re venturing out onto the most benign of fire trails, beware. Trail running requires patience and skill. Read on. 1. Pace yourself. One particular stride dynamic that can occur in a triathlete who has logged thousands of miles on the road or on the treadmill is a very low leg lift. The low clearance of your foot above the pavement is one thing—efficient and generally safe—but on a rock-imbedded trail a low stride can cause you to catch your toe and send you flying. The point is that when you adopt trail running into your schedule, you need to allow for acclimatization. Forget trying to hold any sort of per-mile pace, be very aware and allow your legs and mind to get a feel for what you’re working with. Over time you’ll get your trail legs and be naturally more confident (and safe) running on trails. 2. Listen to the trail. So you’ve got the hang of trail running. Fantastic. Confidence is good on the trail. But overconfidence is bad. Be patient. Do not try to tame the wild. Allow the terrain to dictate your pace. It takes just one bad spill and broken bone to flush all your fitness down the toilet. 3. Run with a partner, a map and a mode of communication. Taking on deep trail is a wonderful escape from the urban environment, but as we’ve seen time and time again (consider Danelle Ballangee’s story in the May issue of Triathlete) there are dangers. Getting injured and getting lost are the two biggies. Have a plan in place to get help if the worst-case scenario arises. 4. Pack up. Do as ultra-runners do and get used to carrying a belt pack and other trail-running equipment loaded up with food, fluids, map, money and a cell phone. 5. Love it. One nice thing about trail running: it’s a terrific place to carry out long runs. The scenery, the air and the quiet seem to make hours pass by like minutes.

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

All products courtesy the manufacturers

Rich Cruse

The Fanatic is like a light tank: It’s built to be rugged but still goes like hell. At the heart of the Fanatic is a classic two-density EVA foam midsole, but after that everything is thoroughly reinforced. A molded arch adds integrity and toughness to the midsole, and a lightweight skeleton of plastic that locks it all together strengthens the air mesh upper. You will feel emboldened by the Fanatic to go where no off-roader has gone before. merrell.com


1/10/07

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THE LONELINESS OF THE

OPEN-WATER

SWIMMER

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A relatively unknown, but growing, sport, long-distance open-water swimming bears a striking resemblance to its three-sport cousin as it thunders toward Olympic inclusion in 2008

By Richard Martin Photography by John Segesta

Standing on the shore you can feel the pebbly beach under your feet, and the chill in the early-morning air has brought bumps to your forearms. As you adjust your goggles you can see the sun breaking through a rim of low hills across the pewter-colored surface of the lake. Around you there’s conversation and some scattered shouts of encouragement, but somehow it sounds a long way off. The water, as you start to wade in, is cool but not frigid, and you quickly warm up inside your wetsuit. At the gun you avoid the splashing melee at the head of the crowd and take a few hard strokes to get going before settling into a steady rhythm, breathing on both sides. The pack strings out and you can tell, from raising your head every 10th stroke or so, that you are closer to the front than the rear. You notice the clouds changing color with almost every breath. By the time you reach the first buoy it’s full daylight and your stroke is long and powerful and the brisk water now feels like a warm embrace, holding you up and pushing you effortlessly forward. Time passes easily, and soon enough you’ve rounded the last buoy and the finish comes closer. You’re on your way to the best open-water swim of your life. Or, sometimes, it goes like this: At the world swimming championships in Melbourne in April, athletes faced heavy surf, fierce, close-in jostling for position and nasty jellyfish in Port Phillip Bay. The women’s 25-kilometer race was actually halted because of stormy seas and resumed the following day. It was the first time in open-water worlds history that a race had to be halted because of weather conditions. “The conditions were harrowing Saturday,” read the Associated Press dispatch on the race, “with the swimmers flailing around in crashing surf, many of them unsure exactly where they were going as the wind whipped up to 75 kilometers an hour.” “That was a terrifying experience,” U.S. swimmer Kalyn Keller told reporters afterward. “I thought it was a bad dream.” “It was my first-ever 25-kilometer, and it’ll be my last,” said Jana Pechanova of the Czech Republic. “It’s too dangerous.” Even when conditions calmed down the next day, many swimmers exited the 10K and 25K races covered in welts from the jellyfish that infested the bay. And the in-fighting among the lead pack, which for much of the men’s 10K numbered 35 swimmers, was unusually combative. “I’ve never seen anything like it,” said USA Swimming assistant coach Steve Munatones, who led the American open-water contingent in Melbourne and who’s been involved in open-water swimming since his days at Harvard in the early 1980s. “They were splashing and kicking and elbowing each other for an hour-and-a-half, when the lead pack finally dwindled to about 15. “That was the most challenging race I’ve ever seen.” Competition in open-water swimming—the ultra-distance counterpart to pool swimming, popular for years in Europe and only now catching on in North America—is intensifying because of one factor: the 2008 Olympics in Beijing. For the first time the swimming events will include an open-water race: a 10K swim held in the rowing basin being constructed for the Games (which, of course, is not open water in the true sense). Long considered masochists and weirdos by their flip-turning brethren, open-water swimmers are now gaining a level of acceptance and recognition that only the five rings can bring. Beijing, says Karen Reeder, a former U.S. national open-water swimmer and now a member of the USA Swimming steering committee for open water, will mark the beginning of a new era for this demanding and esoteric sport.

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“In the swimming community each Olympic year we see more kids signed up for pool teams that next fall,” notes Reeder, “and the same thing will happen with open water.” Most triathletes, of course, often come to open-water swimming out of necessity, and they’re unaware that lake and ocean swimming have a proud heritage of their own that stretches from 19th-century British poet Lord Byron swimming the Hellespont to Gertrude Ederle’s smashing of the English Channel swim record in 1926 to Lynne Cox’s astonishing Antarctic swims of the present day. Only recently has the peculiar allure of spending hours in dark, cold water, with no walls and no lane lines, begun to attract aficionados of endurance sport. Great open-water swimmers almost always start out as competitive pool swimmers and later in life discover the joys of unbounded aquatics. Almost every dedicated open-water swimmer has a clear memory of the race or the swim that got them hooked. “At the ’96 summer nationals, my coach heard about the openwater swim and wanted us to do it,” recalls Erica Rose, a college distance swimmer at Northwestern University who has blossomed into one of the top U.S. open-water competitors. “I was the only one who decided to give it a try, and I placed second in the 5K and qualified for an international trip.” The qualities required to become a successful open-water swimmer are not unlike those required for success in triathlon: stamina, resilience, a taste for long hours of solitary training and above all adaptability. “For me, a big part of it is just the distance,” says Rose. “I tend to do better the longer the distance. And I really enjoy not just following a black line on the bottom of the pool. I like being in different locations, in different challenging circumstances and different currents that you try to negotiate.” “Depending on the location, open water can be a lot more fun than the pool,” says Trip Strauss, who swam at Yale before taking third place at the Waikiki Roughwater Swim in 1983. “In Hawaii, for example, you could actually see sea turtles swimming 40 feet below you.” Spotting sea turtles and battling waves may not be for everyone, but many long-time swimmers who have plateaued or burned out 8 2 J U LY 2 0 0 7

in the pool have found that turning to the open water has rejuvenated their careers. Australian distance star Grant Hackett has already said he plans to move up to the 10K in Beijing. “If you enjoy swimming, you can lengthen your career or expand your horizons by moving into open water,” says Munatones. “You can continue to concentrate on pool swimming but add a different dimension.” Munatones, who grew up swimming in the ocean off Southern California, was a good-but-not-Olympic-caliber swimmer at Harvard when he did his first competitive open-water swim. “This was in 1982, the first year that USA Swimming sent an official team to the open-water world championships,” he recalls. “There was a qualifying race in Seal Beach, one beach away from where I lived in Huntington Beach, and I won. So I got to be on the first USA Swimming international team for open water.” That world championship, a 25-kilometer swim held at Lake Windermere in northern England, attracted a few dozen competitors. Today it’s not unusual for hundreds of swimmers to turn up for big races like the Waikiki Roughwater, the La Jolla Roughwater near San Diego and the Horsetooth Open Water Swim in northern Colorado. “Definitely within the last year, and especially since they announced the 10K as an Olympic sport, we’ve seen a dramatic increase in the interest level and number of competitors,” says Rose. “At the nationals in mid-May in Ft Myers, [Fla.] I expect we’ll see the largest number of entries ever.” The U.S. fared well at the Melbourne championships—Kalyn Keller finished second in the women’s 25K, while Mark Workentin placed fourth in the men’s 25K. But the real powers in the sport are Russia, Germany and Australia. Russia barely beat out Germany in Melbourne for the championship trophy, awarded to the country with the best overall performance by men and women. Although times vary from course to course (and day to day, as demonstrated in Melbourne), elite athletes agree that the pace at international events is accelerating rapidly, and the Olympic debut, in the flat water of the rowing basin, should be among the fastest 10Ks ever swum. T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M


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The competition is unquestionably getting closer: In the 10K at Melbourne, which lasted just over two hours, the top 12 women were separated by only 11 seconds. With its huge base of age-group swimmers, its world-leading elite pool-swimming program and its long coastline, the U.S. should one day be among the top three nations in open-water swimming, says Reeder. One problem is that many local open-water races are unsanctioned by USA Swimming, which means they do not have age-group divisions. “I’d like to see the masters swimmers, and the organizers, start opening up the distance swims and making part of the competition available to younger athletes,” she says. “If we established an agegroup open-water championship, and had a longer race—a 5K or 7K—for the older athletes, we’d have the more seasoned, experienced open-water swimmers going on to the national level. That’s when you’ll see the U.S. really start to compete on the international level.” “Of the top countries, the U.S. is by far the least experienced [at open-water racing],” agrees Munatones. “We as Americans typically don’t race this way. Triathletes do, they understand the benefits and strategies of drafting. But all the swimmers who come from the pool, they’re used to swimming by themselves in an enclosed environment, under controlled conditions, with no one within five feet of them. They need to understand that this type of swimming is significantly different.” Indeed, for triathletes seeking to gain a competitive edge, a strong background in open-water racing can be the difference between a mid-pack finish and a spot on the podium. So what are the main training and racing lessons for making the shift from the pool to the lake or the ocean? Don’t alter your training radically. Rose, who lives and trains in Chicago under Northwestern men’s swimming coach Bob Groseth, hardly ventures out into Lake Michigan until summer. “I get more out of knowing how far and how fast I’m going in the pool,” she says. “If you train like a distance swimmer, I don’t think the training has to be different for roughwater,” says Strauss. “In other words, if you are training for the mile in swimming, I think the training regimen would be similar. A sprinter in normal pool competitions would obviously be out of his element in an ocean swim, much as he would be swimming a mile in a pool race.” Have a plan, but expect the unexpected. One of the hardest things for pool swimmers to adjust to in open water, says Reeder, is being subject to forces they can’t control. “You’re used to trying

8 4 J U LY 2 0 0 7

to control the environment, and you end up trying to correct every time a wave pushes you,” she explains. “It’s really a philosophical, mental thing—if you think about it, even when a swell is pushing you off-course, you’re still just taking your hand and pulling this way and pushing that way. You just get in open water things that happen to you that you can’t control.” Part of the fun, says Munatones, is that you never swim the exact same course twice: “Doing Ironman on the Big Island, or the English Channel, or a lake swim in the summer in Indiana, are all completely different. What a newcomer needs to understand is that every race is different. Even if you do the same race year in year out, one year it’s windy and the current is against you, another year current is with you. It’s always different.” Be ready for the crush at the start. Just about every triathlete has made the mistake of getting caught up in the melee at the start of the swim and having to rest and recover to get back into an aerobic zone. In every open-water swim there’s a small percentage of racers out to win; if you’re just swimming against yourself, let them go out first. Take a wide, curving approach to the first buoy to stay out of harm’s way and find your own rhythm. If you do choose to swim near the front, swim defensively: “If you are going with the leaders, keep your elbows high and your arms close to your head in the beginning to prevent your goggles from being knocked off in the bedlam,” advises Strauss. It helps to have a background in contact aquatics: “I played water polo from the age of 12 or 13,” laughs Munatones, “and going around the turnbuoys it really helped because you have to protect your space. People who’ve played water polo before know how to protect themselves when there’s all sorts of thrashing going on.” Race as much as possible. Unlike long-distance triathlons, which can take months to recover from, open-water swims can be an element of an ongoing training regimen—and there’s no substitute for experience. Especially for triathletes, a 5K or even 10K open-water swim provides a welcome respite from the rigors of going all-out at three different sports. “Do as many races as you can, and swim as much as you can in open water,” advises Reeder. “You’ll find yourself swimming in all different conditions—cold water, warm water, all different kinds of waves, chop and swells. In this sport they don’t cancel many races because of the conditions.” Ultimately, the allure of open-water swimming is not Olympic medals or professional prize money or the thrill of being kicked in the face repeatedly by fellow competitors. It’s the primal sense of being a lonely swimmer in a huge and unforgiving body of water. Lynne Cox, who has swum the Bering Strait and the Magellan Strait in addition to her world-record Channel crossing, captured the unique spirit of the thing in an interview reprinted on her Web site. “After swimming for more than five hours and being pushed backwards the entire time by a very strong current, people throughout New Zealand started telephoning out to my escort boat, telling me that I could make the swim,” Cox recalled, describing her Cook Strait crossing in 1975. “There were so many other wonderful and difficult experiences that I had on that swim, but the most important idea that came out of it was that a swim could be more than an individual athletic challenge. A swim could be a way to connect with people from different countries, and it could be a way to open borders between people.”

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New Zealand’s Bryan Rhodes earned the nickname Meatface at Hood River. France’s Nico LeBrun broke his wrist at world champs in Maui. Donna Baker panicked at a sharp turn in Japan, hit the brakes and flew into a lake. Even XTERRA photographer Rich Cruse has landed on his backside a few times trying to capture the commotion. It happens to the best of them: Melanie McQuaid, Conrad Stoltz, Candy Angle.

Illustration by Damon Wilde

“It isn’t a ride till there is blood,” says Stoltz, and reiterates that fact in “The Caveman’s semi-secret XTERRA tips” on page 56. “Falling happens often, and that’s okay,” he adds. “It is very rare to actually get hurt—usually it’s just a scrape or two and brownie points at the office.” While it may be rare to emerge from the rocky trails banged up beyond brownie-point status, there have nonetheless been some real doozies throughout the decade-long history of XTERRA racing. Below, as related by the victims themselves, is a handful of horror stories from XTERRA (ah yes, but we can look back now and laugh). All were painful. Some involved emergency rooms. But after all the stitches and surgeries, none of these athletes threw in the towel.

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I thought everything was fine and picked up speed again. Before I knew it, my rear wheel locked up and tossed me to the right side again. This time I landed on my knee. I noticed a piece of lava rock wedged between the brake rotor and the spokes on my wheel. I couldn’t get it out with my fingers, so I started searching for a stick. This is when I noticed the blood pouring into my bike shoe. I followed the blood trail to my knee and nearly passed out. I couldn’t look at the wound without getting nauseous. I couldn’t feel a thing. I was stuck roadside before the medical personal could get to me. My right hip was bruised pretty badly and cut up, but the worst were my arms, which slid across the lava rock. It was like having a million paper cuts. They spent over an hour in ER irrigating the wound and taking X-rays. Then they handed me some crutches and sent me on my way. —Jamie Whitmore

This was from a post on Conrad Stoltz’s Web site Oct. 2, 2006. I took a big tumble pre-riding the XTERRA USA champs course this weekend. I went over the bars at a high speed, landed on my head, splitting my helmet. I fractured my wrist in four places, and I have a compression fracture of T12. I’m having surgery to repair and plate the wrist in Reno on Wednesday and will be wearing a back brace for two months to help the spine heal. But I’m in good spirits and am thankful to be able to make a full recovery. Those who know me well will agree that next year I’ll be back with renewed vigor. Thanks a lot for your support. P.S. My bike is fine —Conrad Stoltz

Rich Cruse

P.S. My bike is fine

Whitmore takes The Plunge—literally

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Rich Cruse

I don’t know how many times I heard, “What happened to you in Maui?” after the 2006 XTERRA World Championship. Rumor had it that I dropped out due to minor cuts and abrasions. But there was nothing minor about the giant hole in my knee. Let me start at the beginning. What makes the world champs in Maui unique is the bike course covered with loose lava rock. Imagine throwing a ton of different-sized marbles on the ground and then riding on them. Race morning was typical: I was behind in the swim and trying to make up time on the bike. I wasn’t making the progress I wanted on the uphills, so I pushed a little harder on the descents to make up for lost time. I was about halfway through the bike on the infamous downhill, The Plunge. People crash here all the time. I crashed here twice in 2004 but was able to go on and win. This time was different. I flew by all kinds of people, including the fourth-place woman, when all of a sudden my rear wheel began to fishtail. I was going too fast for the rear of my hardtail bike to stay in place. The right side of my body hit the ground, and I began sliding across the lava rock on my arms like a rag doll. I got the wind knocked out of me, so I couldn’t even get up. This lasted about 30 seconds before the adrenaline kicked in. I straightened out my handlebars and jumped back on the bike.

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DAVE “KAHUNA” NICHOLAS’ TOP-3 SPILL SIGHTINGS

CRASH NO. 2: TOUCHETTE’S SYNDROME Cherie Touchette is a great athlete who seemed to never have any luck. In 2002 Cherie was ready for Maui; she had a great swim and quickly used her climbing skills to take the lead. The videotape of the 2002 race shows a fantastic long cut of Conrad Stoltz absolutely bombing down The Plunge. The cameraman who was at the position kept shooting the downhill, and soon you could see the bright-green jersey of Cherie Touchette coming quickly down the volcano. There was a dip just short of the camera position where the riders go out of sight for a brief second. In that second, the hopes of a world championship for Cherie went all wrong. Instead of riding into sight, that green jersey went flying as poor Cherie came off her bike and rolled hard down the hill.

One good spill deserves another Most seasoned mountain bikers would agree that if you never crash, then you aren’t testing your limits. Last June at the Pelham, Ala., race, I tested mine. While pre-riding the course with my friend Conrad Stoltz (also known to push the limits; please see above), I took a spill in the trees of Oak Mountain State Park. It wasn’t a phenomenal crash, but the outcome was devastating. As I soft-pedaled up to Conrad, he could probably tell by the look on my face that something wasn’t right. “I banged my knee pretty good,” I said. I thought a little ice and ibuprofen would do the trick. That wasn’t the case; it turned out to be an open fracture of the patella (kneecap) that required emergency surgery, a couple long screws and some Kevlar wire. Although the spill was a huge setback for me, it wouldn’t make a highlight reel. But my next crash would. Fast-forward four months to the XTERRA national Championship in Lake Tahoe, Nev. It was my first race back following my knee injury. It happened on the famous Flume Trail, the edge of which basically drops 1600 feet to the shores of Lake Tahoe. As I approached a fellow racer I asked for room to pass. He moved slightly to the left, exposing some of the trail and the steep drop-off. I tried for a quick burst to make it past, but we ran out of trail. He merged back on the trail and bumped me off. I sailed through the air, still clutching the handlebars in an inverted, aerial position. Luckily, I didn’t plunge the1600 feet to my death. Instead, some sharp rocks broke my fall. —Josiah Middaugh 9 0 J U LY 2 0 0 7

CRASH NO. 3: “OHHHHH MY OAKLEYS!” In 1997, Doug LeBlanc had just returned from a tour of duty with the Navy to his home in Louisiana. This new event called XTERRA was taking place at a nearby park, so Doug decided to try it. He won his age group, was first amateur and fifth overall. He was hooked. Over the next year Doug had some great results including second amateur and second in his age group at the world champs in 1997, just 20 seconds out of first. In 1998 he got serious and returned to Maui to win the age-group title. But XTERRA has a humbling way about it, and Doug had serious problems on the bike and came into T2 minutes off the pace. Never one to give up, LeBlanc blistered the run until he got to Spooky Forest. Those who have done XTERRAs understand that the runs take you over and under trees, branches, rocks and streams. Spooky Forest is just that: thousands of salt air–tolerant brushy trees in soft sand. Doug was nearly through Spooky and could see the ocean just a hundred meters away when he forgot to duck. Our cameras were there to capture his head hitting a fallen tree. LeBlanc got knocked on his butt, shook his head, looked around to pick up his glasses and stared into the camera with the now infamous, “Ohhhhh my Oakley’s” exhortation. Despite the hit and fall, Dougie had the fastest run split in his age group. Probably the most important part of the story, however, is that every one of these folks came back to race XTERRA over the years, and every one of them made the post-race party the night of their incident. Maybe that’s the best XTERRA story of all. Race hard, party hard and live more. Dave “Kahuna” Nicholas is the managing director of the XTERRA Global Tour and a friend of this magazine and its staff.

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

Rich Cruse

CRASH NO. 1: SUPER-RHODSEY I still remember what I think has to be the top crash in XTERRA history. It was at Hood River, Ore., in 1999. New Zealand’s Bryan Rhodes is better known as a successful Ironman-distance athlete, but Rhodsey is also great on a mountain bike. The course at Hood River is a climber’s course, and that year we had T2 up on the mountain. Price “Bubba” Miller remembers the incident well. “Rhodsey came into T2 a bloody mess from playing Superman off his bike. His face was totally red. I stopped him and told him to stay put and I’d bring back a medic to clean him up. That crazy Kiwi put his hat on and told me, ‘No way am I stopping,’ and took off running down the hill.” I recall Bubba making an announcement on our radio saying he was sure Rhodes would need assistance because his face looked like hamburger. I waited at an intersection about a quarter-mile from the finish and here comes Rhodes, face beat up, hat hanging down and running like the wind. I followed him past the finish line and told him we needed to get him to the med tent. He asked why, as the man never knew what he looked like. We cleaned him up, he went on the podium to collect his prize and he is forever known to our crew as Meatface. Rhodsey was at our after-party that night, laughing and living it up. And he showed up a week later in Half Moon Bay, Calif., for the next XTERRA.


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©2007 Prostate Cancer Foundation | Photo by Rich Cruse

Michellie Jones Ironman Triathlon World Champion

1 in 6.

One in six American men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer. More than 27,000 men will die from the disease this year alone. It’s time to do something about it. www.athletesforacure.org

Register online between June 1 and July 1, 2007 and receive a free iron-on logo – just like the one Michellie Jones wore in her 2007 Ironman win and is also worn by all Athletes for a Cure Professional Athletes.

There are several risk factors for prostate cancer: family history, age and race. Know your risks for prostate cancer and talk to your doctor.


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A perfect endo in Tahoe

The impact of the fall was like a sandblaster to my face, arms, legs and shoulders. I probably would have lost my vision had it not been for the glasses, and I surely wouldn’t have made it without the helmet. The inside of my lower lip was nearly torn off my mouth and I spit out sand and debris for over a month. My mother cried. The ladies at work screamed. And most of my logical friends questioned my sanity. —Ryan DeCook

Rich Cruse

I was at the 2004 XTERRA nationals in Nevada, and nothing was going to get in my way. I had a pretty good swim and headed out on the stunning Tahoe Flume and Rim Trails. The combination of the uphill riding, dehydration and elevation started to take its toll on my sea level-trained body. I forged on. After I passed the highest portion of the bike, although spent, I was excited because I was pretty sure I was leading my age group. But that’s when the shit hit the fan, or rather, the sand hit the spokes. On the way down the mountain, my legs and arms cramped. The last downhill was fast and furious consisting of sand and rocks with several challenging turns. The sandy fire road was like a cloud of dust, stinging my eyes as I roared around the corners. I flew over the first couple of water bars catching air for a few seconds each. But one of the water bars seemed to creep up on me. I panicked and hit the brakes at exactly the wrong time. The water bar launched me way into the air, and I did an endo worthy of a perfect 10. I believe I revolutionized the modern face-plant. I don’t remember getting on my bike again, but apparently I did. My face took most of the fall. The impact of 20-plus mph broke my helmet, ripped off my glasses and cut up my shoulders, knees, elbows and pretty much destroyed the skin on my face. Although they missed my initial fall, the XTERRA video crews were there to show the world how awful mountain-bike skills are after a concussion. As I finished the last couple of miles, I remember hearing the cameraman yelling “Slow down! Slow down! There’s a big turn up ahead.” Then everything went blank again.

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Usually our crashes occur in the company of our good friends or loved ones, and they are the only ones to see them happen. Not mine. At the 2006 XTERRA world champs, the CBS camera guy was right behind me, catching it all on film, so the entire country got to see it when the race aired. Then, of course, they had to show it numerous times. I was feeling great and starting to think about the run as the bike was almost finished. I thought too far ahead, too soon. All of a sudden, a rock jumped out in front of me, hit my back wheel and sent me flying, skidding across the trail on the lava rocks. It happened so fast I can’t even remember the details. One second I was feeling great on the ride and the next I was crying in pain. I suffered several broken ribs and three lacerations across my knee that all needed stitches. But the most painful part of all was losing a podium finish and the money that went along with it. The one crash I will always never forget just had to happen at the world championships when I was in second place with a couple of miles to go in the bike. —Candy Angle

9 2 J U LY 2 0 0 7

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

Rich Cruse

In the company of strangers


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Keeping the rubber side down

Courtesy Melanie McQuaid

By Melanie McQuaid

Melanie McQuaid’s 7 tips for staying saddled up XTERRA has a reputation for being a dangerous sport. I wholeheartedly disagree. Poor bike-handling skills contribute to crashes on the road just as they do off-road. And, on the plus side, off-road racing will help you corner and descend better and will help you be able to stay aero longer on your road bike by teaching you to relax your upper body while powering with your legs. • Think about your tires. There are many combinations that can help you navigate sketchy terrain or minimize rolling resistance on high-speed sections. Knowing a course can help you to put together the right rubber combination for race day. The pressure you ride your tires at will affect the traction you get from the rubber, so experiment with that as well. • Pre-ride the course if possible. This will help your tire decision as outlined above and allow you to check out any tricky sections at slow speed. After you have had a couple passes to gain some confidence, then practice at race speed. This will help you formulate a strategy for pacing and fueling on the bike.

9 4 J U LY 2 0 0 7

• Riding sketchy sections is very similar to skiing the steeps. You want to look ahead and choose your line ahead of time. The difference is that instead of keeping your weight forward on your skis you actually want to keep your weight back. Having your center of gravity over your rear wheel will help you stay behind the bars rather than going over them. • Once you have chosen your line and pushed your weight back, commit! The worst thing you can possibly do is change your mind halfway through. A bit of confidence will prevent most of your crashes. It is usually a late exit that causes a crash. • Practice riding technical sections at race pace. It is a different skill to ride descents while calm and rested versus riding sketchy bits at race pace. • Be confident and relaxed. Usually when you are nervous you look where you don’t want to go and tighten up your shoulders and arms. Relaxing allows you to use your upper and lower body as extra suspension in bumpy sections. • Lastly, keep focused. If you focus, look far ahead, stay relaxed and commit, you will have your best ride.

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Courtesy Terry Martin

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TRIATHLON MEETS TINSELTOWN Twenty years ago Nautica Malibu Triathlon race director Michael Epstein started a tiny triathlon in west LA. Today, Hollywood A-listers run the show By Rebecca Roozen 9 6 J U LY 2 0 0 7

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The only times you’re certain to see celebs like David Duchovny, Jennifer Garner and Will Ferrell are on the silver screen or in the pages of US Weekly. But triathletes looking for a race with a little flavor, Hollywood-style, have a chance to rub shoulders with these stars that drop their celeb status for a day and join in on the swim-bike-run at the Nautica Malibu Triathlon, in California. The tradition began when Tom Cruise showed up one year as part of relay team at the Malibu race. A following of athletic A-listers like Robin Williams, Minnie Driver and David James Elliot were interested in racing the .5-mile swim, 18-mile bike, 4-mile run course—or part of it—to raise money for charity. For years, race director Michael Epstein donated profits to the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation, and this year benefits of the Sept. 16 race will support the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. Triathlete checked in with Epstein to learn how he built one of the greatest acts in triathlon.

and others, but Nautica was our key event. Every year it just kept getting bigger and bigger. TM: And now? ME: It’s totally transformed today. In 1997 I decided, because of some personal battles—my wife had cancer when pregnant with my son—to give something back. To take one of our events and give back. The year before we started that, Tom Cruise showed up and raced on a relay team. That was pretty cool. We figured since we’re in Malibu, we might as well start reaching out to trainers and other celeb athletes. Scott Tinley invited Robin Williams to come down as a host. We got news anchors and television stations in on it and found celebrities that could either swim, bike or run and built teams around them. Our runners were worldclass cyclists and swimmers like Amanda Beard. We had a very competitive division, and at the same time we were reaching out. It went from celebrities just doing relay teams to doing the whole thing. We’ve been very fortunate to have them take time out of their busy schedules—people like Jennifer Garner and Felicity Huffman—to come help us out.

Courtesy Michael Epstein

TM: What’s been the most interesting aspect of having celebrities participate in your race? ME: The reason they come is to be athletes for a day. The common bond is that they take their celebrity life away for the day and just come out and race. I think that’s the coolest thing about this race.

Courtesy Terry Martin

Triathlete magazine: How did you get started as a triathlon race director? Michael Epstein: I started out as a participant triathlete and began competing in longer and longer triathlons. I really started getting into it in the mid- to early ’80s. I did this Bud Light race in Boston—there were 2000 people, a ton for that time— and they lost my running shoes. So, I had to run the 10km barefoot. Needless to say, I got to know the race director after that, in search of my shoes. There were a lot of people complaining and yelling about the race. But I thought it was great. I got inspired by the sport and how many people were involved. So I asked the race director how to get involved, and he said I should just start my own triathlon . . . I started volunteering at events and later that year put on the Malibu Triathlon for the first time. TM: What were your initial intentions with the Nautica Malibu Triathlon? ME: I had absolutely no idea we were going to turn it into a business at some point. It was just a hobby at first, and about four years into it it turned into a fulltime job. That was about 1991. We were putting on other events, such as lifeguard competitions

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A few years back, the Wildflower Long Course Triathlon lost its allocation of Hawaii Ironman slots. Some wondered if the retraction would spell a long, slow doom for the race that, each spring, triggers a lemming-like response from triathletes across the continent and around the globe. Would people still giddily overload their vans with bikes and tri-club members and drive six or 36 hours to Lake San Antonio? Would they continue to accept the crush of traffic that at times locks up the winding, narrow roads in Central California wine country? The packed campgrounds? The deliriously non-existent cell-phone reception? Terry Davis, the accidental race director who virtually stumbled into creating Wildflower a quarter of a century ago, recalls the change. “The WTC is a great organization, and we understood why they were re-allocating the slots,” he says. Did it hurt the race? “Well,” he remarks with his trademark kindness, “the year after we lost the slots, our festival grew 20 percent.” One factor surely at work within the Wildflower magic—the weekend now features three races, the half-ironman-distance Long Course, a sprint mountain-bike race and a Sunday Olympic-distance race—is that, like Kona and the Hawaii Ironman, the longer an event runs in a single location, the more good memories that accrue and multiply and generate the soul of a triathlon. Every individual stacks them up year after year, and just do the math. You only need to do the long-course race once to establish emotionally charged memories. For instance: the descent down the concrete boat ramp into the swim where the adrenalin feels like it’s going to ooze from your ears; the opening climb on the bike route with your buddy clanging a cow bell from the side of the road, where you experience what it’s like to be a cable car grinding up a California street in San Francisco; the almost overwhelming sense of relief of (finally) ascending the peak after mile five on the trail run and the delicious view of the downhill run into the valley; the live music on stage at Wildflower central, with the sunburned foothills as a glorious backdrop. The memories keep piling up, and we accumulate a life at Lake San Antonio where, with the awakening spring and the promise of summer, we feel compelled to return and once again thrash ourselves through yet another eye-popping sacrifice for the triathlon gods. On the weekend of May 5, nearly 8000 triathletes set up camp at Lake San Antonio for the 25th running of the event. In the premiere event held on Saturday, California’s Becky Lavelle employed an overpowering bike ride to break free from a string of frustrating past finishes, and Sweden’s Bjorn Andersson surprised himself as well as the triathlon world by holding off Australian Chris Legh on the 13.1-mile run leg to win his first Wildflower crown.

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

The 32-year-old Lavelle finished second in both the 2002 and 2003 long-course competitions and then was sidelined for three straight years by injury and illness. Although 2006 champ Samantha McGlone opted to go to St. Croix rather than defend her title at Lake San Antonio, Lavelle would face the challenge of fending off Australians Kate Major and Mirinda Carfrae and American Alexis Waddel. Lavelle burned through a choppy 1.2-mile swim in 25:29 to establish a two-minute gap on the women she would later worry about on

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the run. The 56-mile bike leg was cursed with relentless cross- and headwinds, a factor that Lavelle used to her advantage as she padded her lead by out-biking her competitors by four minutes and more, splitting 2:37:13 as compared to Waddel’s 2:41 and Major and Carfrae’s 2:42. “I had no idea what kind of lead I had until halfway through the run,” Lavelle said. The dark memories of 2002 and 2003—where she lead both races until being overtaken on the draining trails that crawl up and down through the hills between the lake and Long Valley—surely motivated the woman that has been dubbed the queen of TriCalifornia events. But her 1:30:49 run did the job, winning the one TriCalifornia title that has long eluded her with a time of 4:35:19. Carfrae finished second in 4:38:14, Major third in 4:42:26 and Waddel fourth in 4:42:52. Also taking thorough advantage of the windwhipped bike leg was powerhouse Andersson, fresh off a stint of desert training in Southern California. Andersson wasn’t able to shake many competitors during the swim, as he exited with the likes of Colorado’s Brian Fleischmann, California’s Brian Lavelle (Becky’s husband) and New Zealand’s Bryan Rhodes, all in the 24-minute range. On the bike, however, Anderson locked himself deeply into the aero position on his Cervelo and ripped free of the field on the undulating bike ride. The 28-year-old Swede biked 2:15:05, miraculously fast considering the tough conditions (the bike-course record was set by onetime pro cyclist Steve

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Wildflower turns 25: A chat with Terry Davis After a quarter century, Wildflower race director Terry Davis has watched his creation grow from 86 athletes in 1983 to a happening with 8,000 athletes this year

By Jay Prasuhn

Larsen in 2001 with a time of 2:14:06). His chief competitor, Aussie Chris Legh, managed a 2:19:46 and was five minutes behind Andersson at T2. “Based on historical events, I would have been confident if Bjorn had 10 minutes on me,” Leigh quipped after the race, a comment reflecting Andersson’s at-times weak run. “But he was tough out there today,” Legh said. “I took the lead at mile nine and figured I had it. But he attacked twice, and Wildflower Long Course Triathlon I was completely Lake San Antonio, Calif. empty. I couldn’t May 5, 2007 match him.” 1.2-mile swim, 56-mile bike, 13.1-mile run “I thought for sure Chris had the win,” Women Andersson said. “I 1. Becky Lavelle (USA) 4:35:19 can’t say I really 2. Mirinda Carfrae (AUS) 4:38:14 attacked; I just ran as 3. Kate Major (AUS) 4:42:26 hard as I could.” 4. Alexis Waddel (USA) 4:42:52 Andersson fin5. Erin Ford (USA) 4:46:47 ished off the victory with a 1:26:04 Men run and 4:07:53 1. Bjorn Andersson (SWE) 4:07:53 win. Legh was sec2. Chris Legh (AUS) 4:08:21 ond in 4:08:21 and 3. Benjamin Hoffman (USA) 4:13:32 Benjamin Hoffman, 4. Joe Gambles (AUS) 4:14:45 from Durango, 5. Timothy Marr (USA) 4:15:02 Colo., took third in 4:13:32. For complete results, visit tricalifornia.com. 1 0 4 J U LY 2 0 0 7

Wildflower never always manages to bring up something memorable. 2004 was such a year. I could scarcely keep up with Cameron Brown on my mountain bike as he ripped over the hilly course in third place on the run. As he rounded a corner, me pedaling furiously on his heels, we were greeted by the historic topless aid station, a collection of CalPoly students that made cheering a spectator event for the athletes. Concentration broken, Cam glanced at me and cracked a smile, “I certainly didn’t expect that!”

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Wildflower weekend is just thatâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;a break from the ordinary. What started in 1983 with just 86 athletes has swelled to an event with 8,000 athletes and 30,000 spectators, turning a sleepy campsite at Lake San Antonio, in California, into whatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s often termed the Woodstock of Triathlon. Wildflower is actually several races (long-course, Olympic-distance and mountain-bike triathlons) with several titles up for grabs including an always hotly contested pro race, relay races, collegiate and club championship. Celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, Wildflower remains an A-list spring fling on the calendar of any athlete.

or plan, but I canâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t. I was planning a Bluegrass Festival with a 10K run to promote the lake in the early season. A friend said we should do this new thing called triathlon where you swim, bike and run. I like different experiences, so I said that it sounded great, letâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s do it. I was working for the Monterey County Parks Department at the time so the permitting was easy and the roads were lightly traveled, so that made planning it much easier.

Triathlete: Back in 1983, did you expect this race would became a cultural phenomenon? Davis: Truthfully, back in 1983 I really didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t know what the future would bring. I knew that the lifestyle of fitness and recreation was not only good for your body but it was good for your mind. Triathlon was a new sporting event that combined the three basic activities everyone wants to do from the time they are kids able to play. As far as Wildflower goes, only after the first race did I have a feeling that it was something special, but I didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t know why. What Wildflower has grown into is beyond my biggest imagination. It is like your child growing up to be the President of the United States.

Triathlete: Within the races you present club and collegiate championships. No better place to get team collegiate camaraderie together than at a campsite the night before the race, eh? Davis: I think triathlon clubs and teams are the heart and soul of the sport. If our sport is about living right, then sharing the lifestyle with someone else doubles the pleasure. Not very many people like to train alone. It is great to have someone else to share your passions with. Triathlon clubs provide a way for groups of likeminded people to share more time together. We have club competitions to bring the clubs from different cities together and the members on the teams have pride in their particular teams. It is a really healthy environment. Teams also provide safety, security and companionship. They reach out to new people and bring them to the event.

Triathlete: In a sport that celebrates big events in big metro centers, what spurred you to have a race in such a remote location? Easy county permit on lightly traveled roads? Davis: I wish I could take some credit for some special strategy

Triathlete: While the 70.3 series has picked up steam, are you proud that Wildflower long course was regarded the first middle-ground battlefield between the short-course and Ironman pros?

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Davis: I think I am most proud that Wildflower is Wildflower. There is nothing else in the world like it. The Ironman races are great, but they seem to be more about market share than the race. Wildflower is the most difficult long-course race in the world. Professional triathletes, just like the rest of the triathletes that come to Wildflower, love the course and love the atmosphere. In the early years professional triathletes did all the distances: Scott Tinley, Mark Allen, Dave Scott and Scott Molina would win the longer races and Mike Pigg, Greg Welch and Ken Souza would win the shorter races. Greg Welch was the first little fast guy to win Ironman, the big tough guyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s race. This gave short-course racers the idea that they could move up. Wildflower was perfect battleground for this new rivalry, and it has been perfect ever since. Many careers have been started at Wildflower and many careers have been made at Wildflower. The great part is that it seems that when you get to Wildflower all the egos are left at home and everyone is just there to enjoy the day. Triathlete: This event has earned you a reputation as one of the best race directors in the nation, if not globally. How do you organize almost 40,000 people? Davis: It is done by the grace and mercy of God and a lot of hard work by an incredible group of people referred to as the TriCalifornia Team. Although we are not all family members we operate like a big family. There are about 80-100 dedicated, hard-working and committed people who are the key team members to putting on Wildflower and the other Tri-California events. They love to work with each other and the events are an excuse to be togeth-

er. My daughter Colleen Bousman is the vice president of the company and the kingpin to the organization. She has the organizational skills of a brain surgeon and directs all the committees and teams. Many of the team members have been with us from the early years and know everything about their area of the event. I was told once when I was a kid that if you take care of the little things, they will take care of you. Triathlete: What are your top memories from the last 25 years at Lake San Antonio? Davis: I think the first is watching Paula Newby Fraser win her first Wildflower triathlon and then following her incredible career. She is truly the queen of the sport. Those early years were special. They were the beginning of friendships that would last for decades. The pioneers of the sport would later become the legends. 2004, the year of the incredible rains where we had to change the courses on the morning of the race. It rained so hard on the trails in the backcountry that triathletes would have literally gotten stuck in the mud if we didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t change the course. It was incredible because we were able to make the course changes and not affect the experience of the triathletes. The triathletes who survived that year are the real triathletes. They will have stories to tell the rest of their lives. Finally, the 20th-anniversary year in 2002 was a special event for me. To really see the fruits of your work and take a few minutes to put them into perspective is always great. This was also the year when we moved the transition area to the lower parking lot and made the new finish area that allowed us to expand the race to 8,000 racers.

      

   



  

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July 7, 2002, was a picture-perfect blue-sky morning in Telluride, Colo. With the sun shining on the jagged peaks of the San Juan Mountains, 248 endurance athletes from around the world stuffed various pieces of gear into lightweight backpacks in preparation for the beginning of the world’s richest adventure race. Five years ago, adventure racing was all the rage, and the start of the inaugural Primal Quest Expedition Adventure Race signaled the dawn of a new day in the sport. Having four-person co-ed teams endure non-stop challenges in the wilderness had become an intriguing concept, both to endurance athletes and armchair adventurers watching at home on TV. Primal Quest’s $250,000 prize purse was a new high point for the sport, but so was the fact that a major international race was being held on U.S. soil for the first time since 1995 when Mark Burnett held his first two Eco-Challenge races in Utah and New England. With the ninth edition of Eco-Challenge slated for mid-October in Fiji, the future of adventure racing never looked brighter than it did that summer. Its attention and popularity—especially in shorter, more accessible races—brought new sponsorship money that lured trail runners, kayakers, mountain bikers and triathletes into the fledgling sport and helped dozens of new races get started across the U.S. and Canada. But somewhere on the way to an endorphin-induced nirvana, the gravy train jumped the T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M


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tracks. Since the end of 2005, several of adventure racing’s biggest events—including Primal Quest—most of its semi-professional teams and even a monthly magazine that covered the sport have been put on hold or disappeared completely. When Primal Quest announced last winter that it wouldn’t hold a 2007 race because of logistical and funding issues, it came as a major disappointment to athletes, even though it merely confirmed what had been expected for a long time. A few months earlier, a reduction in sponsorship money had forced the French organizers of the Raid World Championship to cancel its international qualifying series and retool its expedition championship race into a fiveday stage race in France. Among major international events, only the Adventure Racing World Championship, held in early June in Scotland, remained as an expedition-style race. “It’s a real drag, for sure,” says Mike Kloser, captain of Team Nike, which won four world championships and four Primal Quest titles between 2002 and 2006. “For a while, we had a lot of T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

great, big events like Eco, PQ and the Raid and now we’re down to just the world championship.”

State of the sport But it’s not just major international events with $8,000 entry fees, it’s smaller domestic races that cost a few hundred bucks, too. The Virginia-based Beast of the East adventure race, a prominent multiday race in the U.S. since its inception in 1998, was canceled in 2006 and not held this year. The Teva Mountain Games in Vail, Colo., and the Mountain Sports Festival in Asheville, N.C., both removed the six-hour adventure races from their roster of events in 2007. To top it off, many of the sport’s most decorated athletes—Ian Adamson, Patrick Harper, Rebecca Rusch and Billy Mattison—have recently retired from the sport. What happens next is anyone’s guess, but most agree the sport is at a crossroads. “This will be kind of an indicator year for the sport,” says Todd Jackson, owner of Lake Tahoe-based Seventh Wave Productions, which is organizing 14 adventure races in the Big Blue Adventure T R I AT H L E T E M A G A Z I N E 1 0 9


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Series this year. “The big events are important because they always draw the interest of gear manufacturers, and that’s always good for the sport, but that’s not where most of the competitors are coming from. But our numbers have been good so far this year even without a big event.” There are certainly parallels, not to mention lessons to be learned, in triathlon’s history. Ironman created a Here are five key people who helped storm of interest in triathlon grow the sport of adventure racing in in the early 1980s, only to the U.S. see it wane in the early 1990s before eventually rebound1. Mark Burnett ing, in a huge way, after the The founder and executive producer sport’s Olympic debut in of Eco-Challenge, Burnett held nine 2000. Rising race costs and events in eight countries between 1995 entry fees, a fickle sponsorand 2002 before moving on to other ship climate and the struggle reality TV projects such as Survivor, The of organizing on a global Apprentice, Rock Star, The Casino, The level are some of the things Restaurant and The Contender. that challenged both sports in their infancy. 2. Michael Epstein “It looks similar to what The first person to make adventure happened with triathlon, racing accessible to the masses, this which hit a home run with longtime triathlon producer operated the Julie Moss on TV in 1982 Hi-Tec adventure-racing series from just like Eco-Challenge did 1996-2002. He now runs the Muddy in the 1990s,” says Adamson, Buddy run-and-ride series, as well as the who retired in December as Nautica Malibu Triathlon and the Day at one of the world’s most sucthe Beach Triathlon. (For more on Epstein, cessful racers. “Then it took please see the Q & A on page 96.) a foothold and gained momentum, which is what 3. Ian Adamson adventure racing has done. Arguably the most successful advenAnd just like triathlon, the ture racer of all-time, he helped his groundswell of participants teams win seven world-championship continues to grow.” Still, events, including the 2006 Adventure triathlon’s biggest event, Racing World Championship in Norway Ironman, never disappeared and Sweden. Since retiring in December, the way Eco-Challenge, he has been focusing on growing his 24 Hours of Triathlon race in Boulder, Colo.

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Primal Quest and others have, and adventure racing isn’t ready for the Olympics just yet. But there seems to be a lot of potential, both because grassroots participation numbers are still growing and the interest in outdoor action and adventure sports is at an all-time high. The United States Adventure Racing Association (USARA) reports 3,000 members and 300 sanctioned races nationwide. Meanwhile, the outdoor-recreation industry reported nearly $300 billion in sales last year, up more than 50 percent from 1996. And that’s where Troy Farrar, the founder and executive director of the USARA, sees a silver lining. Although many multi-day and 24-hour events have disappeared, the major trend in domestic adventure racing in the last two years has been a focus on short, sprint races—beginner-friendly events that draw between 150 and 250 people and take two to four hours to complete. “That’s a good thing,” Farrar says. “Our numbers are definitely still going up, and having so many beginner races should only bring more people into the sport. The big races almost have to be standalone events that are separate from the grassroots part of the sport. If they come back and help grow the sport, great. But if not, I think we’re still in a very healthy place.”

In the beginning Adventure racing burst onto the scene in the U.S. in 1995 when a then-unknown British ex-pat living in Los Angeles named Mark Burnett announced he was putting on an event called Eco-Challenge through remote deserts, mountains and rivers of Utah. Fifty teams had paid the $7,500 entry fee and signed up for that race, but few knew little, if anything, about what they were getting into. Burnett leveraged the initial interest to generate media coverage in the Los Angeles Times, USA Today and even Playboy magazine while also enticing both MTV and ESPN2 to broadcast some of the highlights. It wasn’t an original idea. Burnett licensed the concept from the Raid Gauloises, the French-organized race that pioneered the concept of co-ed team expedition racing when it debuted in 1989 in New Zealand. With subsequent races in Costa Rica, New Caledonia, Oman and Madagascar, it started to develop a following among endurance fiends, military groups and wealthy travel enthusiasts.

4. Troy Farrar As the founder and executive director of the United States Adventure Racing Association, he’s helped has helped it grow to more than 300 races and 3,000 members since 1999. He also helped put together the first collegiate adventureracing championship this year in Reno.

5. Bill Watkins The chief executive officer of Seagate Technologies, the $15 billion worldwide king of the hard-drive industry, has been a financial backer of adventure racing for many years, including all four editions of Primal Quest. He’s competed in a handful of events and spends $1.8 million of his company’s money to send 200 employees to a team-building adventure race in New Zealand called Eco-Seagate. 1 1 0 J U LY 2 0 0 7

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cities. Although nothing like EcoChallenge or the Raid Gauloises, Epstein’s Hi-Tec Adventure Racing Series events—which were aimed at elite athletes, weekend warriors and couch potatoes—included mountain biking, trail running and openwater paddling in inflatable canoes, plus special tests for good measure. Dozens of other race promoters, many with experience in triathlon, started organizing adventure races, and within a few years there were more than 400 races scheduled across the U.S., Canada and

Teams to watch Burnett didn’t fit into any of those categories, even though he had once been a soldier in the British army. He had read about the Raid in the Los Angeles Times and sensed a trend about to unfold—the combination of an explosion of adventure travel, an increase in authentic outdoor activity and a primal urge to temporarily detach from the hectic pace of life to push one’s physical, mental and emotional limits against the elements of Mother Nature. Many of those traits had been cultivated by triathlon—especially at the Hawaii Ironman—since the early 1980s. But compared to triathlon, which was most notably portrayed with super-fit athletes racing on a closed, pre-determined course in Kona, this new sport featured both elite participants and couch potatoes and was almost completely unstructured and considerably more primitive and dangerous. Finding a quick and safe way through remote jungles with a map and compass, crawling through bat-filled caves, rappelling off treacherous rock faces, mountain biking the gnarliest of trails, riding horses (or camels) across a desert and paddling wooden rafts through whitewater rapids were among the grueling challenges in the early Raid events that Burnett would plug into his Eco-Challenge creation. In retrospect, Burnett’s original Eco-Challenge was both a disaster and a huge success. It was a disaster because he ignored any environmental sensitivity and burned just about every bridge he had built leading up to the event. That first Eco-Challenge sent teams and support staff trampling over fragile desert terrain, leaving large amounts of trash and damaged natural features in its wake. Only 21 teams finished the race, but the fact that Burnett pulled it off at all was a huge success and it helped launch the sport in the U.S. By the following year, when Burnett signed a deal to put his 1996 race on the Discovery Channel as a prime-time miniseries, Eco-Challenge went from cult status to a household name. “At that point, all of the elements were in place for adventure racing to become a real sport because people were already doing everything separately. It just hadn’t been put together,” Adamson says. “Eco-Challenge was the catalyst in the U.S. because Burnett captured this unique, fun, crazy, weird thing that people liked to do and to watch and he got it on TV.” Although the groundswell of media attention created interest, those interested in doing a race typically had trouble finding one. In 1996, there was only a handful of races in the U.S. That’s when triathlon promoter Michael Epstein launched a national series of short, so-called sprint adventure races in state parks near major

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Mexico, with new ones seemingly popping up every month. At the same time, the sport continued to grow in the hotbeds of New Zealand, Australia and Europe, while also making inroads into new markets in Asia, Central America and South America. “It would be nice if Mark Burnett came back or there was a marquee event, but we’re still selling out races without either of those,” says Will Newcomer, producer of 12 adventure races in the Adventure Xstream series in Colorado and Utah. “Eco-Challenge was huge and it helped grow the sport, but it was the Hi-Tec series that really drove the sport at the grassroots level.”

Going big Ironically, Primal Quest debuted in the summer of 2002 only a few months before the final Eco-Challenge. Enticed by the success of Survivor, Burnett put on his last and most challenging race in Fiji that fall and then quietly left the sport in his rearview mirror as several other of

Several top American teams, including GoLite/Timberland, Spyder and Montrail, lost their sponsorship backing in recent years. Here are the top American teams to watch in 2007.

Team Nike (Colorado/Idaho) With four world championships and four Primal Quest titles to its credit, Team Nike is the most successful team in the history of the sport. The core of Mike Kloser, Michael Tobin, Richard Ussher and Monique Merrill is hard to beat, even without Ian Adamson (retirement) and Sari Anderson (pregnancy). eliteadventureteam.com

Team Salomon Crested Butte (Colorado) This team of Bryan Wickenhauser, Eric Sullivan, Jari Kirkland and Jon Brown is coming off its best season yet, having placed fifth at Primal Quest and eighth at the Raid World Championship last year. teamcrestedbutte.com

Team SOLE (California) Led by Paul Romero and Karen Lundgren, this team has taken to racing internationally in recent years. It started 2007 off with a win at Xtremo6000, an expedition race through the Andes of Argentina. teamsole.com

Team Merrell/Wigwam (California) Third at Primal Quest last year, this team includes captain Robyn Benincasa (a San Diego firefigther and six-time Ironman finisher) and Kiwi endurance fiends Jeff Mitchell, Neil Jones, Ian Edmond and Chris Morrissey and South African legend Mark Collins. teammerrellwigwam.com

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M


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his reality TV shows exploded on the network airwaves. The popularity of Eco-Challenge paled in comparison to the success of Survivor, and it was nearly as expensive to produce. But left in the wake of the last Eco-Challenge was a critical mass of adventure-racing participants, events, hordes of specialized lightweight gear and a new way of looking at outdoor recreation. In 2003, the hugely successful Hi-Tec race series was bought and renamed the Balance Bar Adventure Racing Series, and thanks to sponsorship from Kraft Foods’ growing brand of energy bars, had its annual prize purse increased to nearly $200,000. As Primal Quest was emerging in the absence of Eco-Challenge, two other events laid claim to the title of the sport’s de facto world championship that Burnett’s race had carried. At about the same time the Adventure Racing World Championship was announced for 2004 (it had been dormant for two years after an inaugural event in 2001), the Raid Gauloises was retooled into the Raid World Championship with a series of international World Cup qualifiers. In the U.S., more than a dozen teams garnered significant sponsorship deals as the outdoor-sports industry clamored to have the stamina, toughness and authenticity of adventure racing associated with its products. Leading outdoor brands, like Montrail, Merrell, GoLite and Nike, and a few non-endemic companies, like Subaru, Ford, Advil and Snickers, were eager to get involved with the sport. There are probably several reasons the bottom dropped out, not the least of which was the death of Australia racer Nigel Aylott at the 2004 Primal Quest event in the state of Washington. Although the story never made it into mainstream consciousness in the U.S., it exposed sport as having issues with safety and consistency and desperately lacking an international organizing body. If nothing else, it was at least part of the reason for Primal Quest’s one-year hiatus prior to the most recent event in Moab, Utah, last summer.

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Farrar suggests the amateur side of adventure racing needs to be more like trail running or recreational softball and not high-profile sports like NASCAR or the NBA. “We had guys that were trying to be professionals before we had a professional league,” he says. “Some people managed to make a go of it and get sponsored to go places and race, and that was great. But the sport was heading down a path that might not have been a viable path and might never be a viable path.” Now, Farrar says, the sport must find a balance between short events for the masses and long, extreme expedition events for athletes who have the time and money to spend a week to 10 days at an event. Many athletes and race directors have clamored for Burnett to return to the sport, but that seems highly unlikely. Two years ago, he admitted that he missed what he had created in Eco-Challenge and said he’d hope to organize a 10th-anniversary race. But by then he’d had become an Emmy-winning producer who was partnered with Donald Trump. Ironically, the sport has lost some of its former armchair fans to the reality-show genre Burnett pioneered. “I don’t know how many times I hear people refer to The Amazing Race TV show as if it’s actually the same thing as Eco-Challenge,” says Andy Taylor, an amateur racer from the Washington, D.C. “If that’s what some people think, then they really didn’t understand what Eco-Challenge was in the first place.” Despite the demise of several major events and the notoriety of media exposure, there are plenty of positive signs for the sport. The Sea Otter Classic, North America’s biggest bike festival, held an adventure race for the first time on April 14 in Monterey, Calif. The USARA, in conjunction with College Sports TV, held the first college adventure-racing national-championship race on April 15 in Reno, Nev. The sport is still strong with many mid-level events in Europe, South America, Mexico, New Zealand and Australia. There’s talk of a new big-money series in Latin America, and the possibility that Primal Quest could be reorganized under new ownership has been rumored since the spring. There’s also a chance that the prestigious stage race formerly known as the Mild Seven Outdoor Quest in Malaysia might return this fall. “Adventure racing is now in a media lull, which means it will require something else like Olympic sanctioning or a new big race to get a growth spurt,” Adamson says. “Because it’s not going to have the media frenzy like it’s had, it’s going to have to be a genuine self-perpetuating sport to grow. I think it will continue growing slowly from its own natural momentum and the intrinsic nature of the sport grabbing people’s attention, And that’s really what helped it get started in the first place.”

2007 U.S. Championships 2007 USARA Adventure Race National Championship The Nov. 2-3 USARA championship race will send co-ed teams of three through a challenging 24-hour course in the Mark Twain National Forest near Potosi, Mo. The eighth-annual championship will include paddling, mountain biking, trail running, navigation and rappelling. For more information, visit usaranationals.com.

What’s next?

Checkpoint Tracker Series

It’s possible, many close to the sport suggest, that adventure racing got too big too fast. Having several big-money international events take shape before the sport had a chance to develop a foothold in the U.S. has been a challenging obstacle to overcome.

The inaugural Checkpoint Tracker National Points Series will conclude with the Sept. 25 AdventureXstream Expedition race in Moab, Utah. All 11 events of the series have featured detailed online coverage during the race using innovative Web-based race-management technology. checkpointtracker.com

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A Cuban’s

IRONMAN DREAM

While adventure racing may be going through a transition of its own, triathlon is speeding ahead at full tilt; however, despite the sport’s ever-increasing appeal, one can still find races that pay homage to the sport’s early days, when going 140.6 miles was an adventure into the unknown

Sandra Dorfman

By Jay Prasuhn

Like McDonald’s Golden Arches and Nike’s Swoosh, Ironman’s M-Dot has gone global. Big time. Just look at the number of international events: Monaco, South Africa, Australia, Europe and many more. With his friends and training partners, Cuba’s Raul Alcolea did an Ironman— or more accurately, an Ironman-distance race—on Nov. 12 of last year. But in Cuba there were no sponsor banners lining the finish, no live Web updates. Mike Reilly’s voice was not heard booming over the din. No catchers. Certainly no polished medal. And oh yes, before they did the race, they had to set up the course. Locked in an economic vacuum for nearly half a century, Cuban

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triathletes have had little access to many of the go-fast toys that triathletes elsewhere often consider indispensable tools of the trade: a light bike, a wetsuit, race wheels and other high-tech add-ons. Still, the sport has, perhaps incongruously, gained a foothold in Cuba, and in many other unlikely places. Triathlete was able to connect with 36-year-old Raul Alcole Gonzales, who began the sport four years ago thanks to an old issue of Triathlete and a passion to see the sport grow in Cuba. Below, Alcolea relates, in his own words, his first Ironman-distance experience from November 2006. —JP

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Race overview On Nov. 12 we made the third Ironman in Cuba with five triathletes. My dreams disappeared. My wish to break 10 hours was impossible because my bike started to have difficulty some days before the contest; then I was compelled to make 180km with another bike. I knew that it was a risk. On kilometer 90 began the cramps in both legs. That’s why I couldn’t have a good race and the time was only 11:11 for second place. I was in excellent condition to finish in 10 hours—I knew that because I had good workouts, better than in preceding years. I have promised to my people to retain the title of Athlete of Better Endurance in Cuba next year and to attack the time of 9:30.

Starting out We started the swimming at Siboney Beach, 15km from Santiago de Cuba. We went four times around a one-kilometer triangle. We also started cycling from that beach and followed Las Americas Avenue. The run was a 2.62km circuit, which we did 16 times. It is around the Revolution Square, Heredia Theatre and the baseball stadium.

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“IRONMAN” CUBA Santiago de Cuba Nov. 12, 2006 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike, 26.2-mile run 1. Abel Pupo Corrales 2. Raul Alcolea Gonzales 3. Lesther Camejo Sanchez 4. Jorge Arturo Gallego 5. Jackson San Miguel Cachiero

10:38:45 11:11:31 12:10:22 12:30:15 13:01:21

On Nov. 11, the day before starting our last contest, Edilberto and I had to measure the swim course. A few days before, the country sport directors had agreed to measure the circuit with a boat, but no one did it. At 10 a.m. the day before the contest we had to do it by ourselves. We swam the course, laying it out, and finished around 1 p.m. Then we returned home, had lunch and prepared the carbohydrate meals for all of us. After that Edilberto and I tried to beautify the zone where the contest would take place the next day. I went to bed at midnight before the race, but when Edilberto took the bus back to Siboney at 5 a.m. and checked the swim buoys he found they weren’t floating. So with hemp rope and plastic bottles he put the buoys out again, in only 30 minutes. Edilberto is a great person. He was there all the time with me when I resolved to do the race. He lives in a very uncomfortable and poor house 40 kilometers from the city and he took almost all his salary to face his last Ironman trial. It was his second one and he couldn’t finish it.

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T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

Courtesy Raul Alcolea

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Here there isn’t any bike for these contests in shops. Bikes are given by cycle-tourists who are mostly in the capital, Havana, where there is a lot of tourism. These kinds of tourists give it as a present when leaving our country, so there are many good ones in the capital, but they are too expensive for me, who only earn 20 dollars a month. There is a group of Italian cycle-tourists that comes here every year. I’m sure they’ll help me. I hope this year I’ll have a new bike. They gave me a Colnago bike last month. This bike is not so well for Ironman, but great for training. Also there is a group of Norwegians and Canadians that send bikes every year to Havana. Also, I have a copy of Triathlete magazine from the Hawaii Ironman. I only have that one. I take care of it, and almost every day I look at it. I had another one in which Chris McCormack appeared, but I lent it and I lost it. I am still crying for it. In 2003 a triathlete from the capital lent a videotape to me; it was about the Hawaii races won by Mark Allen, Thomas Hellriegel and Luc Van Lierde. This was my inspiration to practice Ironman. They are symbols for me, which inspire me. I used to look at it every week, then I had to return it. I’ve sent my story and pictures to Mark Allen, Dave Scott and Scott Tinley. They have sent me back great replies. Tell Chris McCormack that I have one of his pictures in my room. On Sept. 2 we will have our fourth Ironman. I would like people to know about the development of the Ironman in Cuba, and if any triathletes visit Cuba please tell them to see Raul Alcolea. Maybe these people will help us to develop triathlon. Maybe our next contest could be developed with more quality than the last ones. —Raul Alcolea

Courtesy Kuota

Gearing up

The U.S. may have a trade embargo in place against the Cuban government, but Canadians, not subject to any sanctions, make Cuba a holiday destination, taking bike tours of the island and leaving equipment from bikes to running shoes with the locals. Several triathlon companies, including Canada-based Kuota North America, Profile Design, Fi’zi:k saddles, Beaker Concepts and Clif Bar, chipped in to send out an international goodwill gesture. Alcolea was sent a Kuota K-Factor with a Fi’zi:k Arione Tri 2 saddle and Beaker Concepts HydroTail, as well as a collection of Profile Design aerobars to pass to his training partners. Clif Bar sent along several packets of energy drink and bars. Also included is an issue of Triathlete signed to Alcolea by Chris McCormack. —JP


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TRAINING

TRAIN LAB RABBIT

124

LANE LINES

130

THE BIG RING

134

ON THE RUN

136

SPORTS NUTRITION

140

SPEED LAB

142

TECH SUPPORT

144

DEAR COACH

146

TRAINING FEATURE

150

“There is the RISK you CANNOT AFFORD to take and there is the RISK you CANNOT AFFORD NOT to take.” [Peter Drucker]

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M


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John Segesta/wahoomedia.com

INING

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

T R I AT H L E T E M A G A Z I N E 1 2 3


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Rich Cruse

TRAINING LAB RABBIT

Go off-road Weeks 9-12 of our 12-week XTERRA training program By Lance Watson elcome to the third and final fourweek installment of your XTERRA training program. Weeks 1-4, in the May issue, focused on strength and endurance with on-road and off-road work for the run and bike. Weeks 5-8, in the June issue, increased threshold work and off-road riding frequency (to order these issues, please go to triathletemag.com and click on Order a Back Issue). As we work through weeks 9-12, we will go through what we call emphasis weeks. These emphasis weeks will include increased focus on cycling in week nine and on running in week 10. In week 11 we will reduce training volume and hit some shorter, crisper peaking sessions. Week 12

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is race week; you will rest but keep moving. Studies on tapering have shown that it is more effective to do short sessions that touch on race-specific energy systems than to completely stop and rest. One challenge of XTERRA race prep is course research. Knowledge of these technical courses is very beneficial. In a perfect world you would pre-ride and pre-run the course one to two weeks out from your event; however, for a number of reasons this isn’t always possible, so if you can, ask questions of fellow experienced competitors about what to expect.

ENERGY SYSTEMS AND RECOVERY: Workout descriptions as they appear on the schedule on page 130 provide guidelines for which energy systems you will train from day to day. The aerobic and threshold energy systems are the two main systems that you will use racing triathlons. Intervals, Tempo, Steady State and Time Trial are types of sessions that will improve your lactic threshold and anaerobic capacity—this allows you to race faster

or harder. Base sessions train your aerobic endurance. Power and speed are also addressed to prepare the body for intensity, to increase strength and prevent injury. The goal of any program is to make sure all the energy systems are stressed regularly and in a methodical progression, and recovery sessions are key to this cycle. Recovery sessions are completed at an aerobic rate that won’t induce further fatigue but which will facilitate blood flow to the muscles, removal of waste products and healing of muscle tissue. Heart-rate zones and training: You can monitor your heart rate to ensure you are training in the correct zone. Generally, the zones are listed as 1-5, with 1-2 being your easiest effort, used for recovery, warm-up and endurance sessions. We tend to race 10Ks or 20- to 25mile bike time trials at our lactic-threshold heart rate—or at the top of heart-rate zone 4 (note that cycling and running may have different lactic-threshold heart rates). Zone 5 is at, or above, your lactic threshold, similar to going all-out on the

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TRAINING LAB RABBIT

XTERRA RUN TIPS

track for 400-800 meters. Triathletes do not spend too much time in zone 5, since it is highly taxing on the body, and too much work in this area leads to breakdown and over-training. Pay attention to your heart rate and your sense of perceived effort each day. The heart is a muscle, not a machine, and numbers change from day to day due to stress in your life, hormones, caffeine and a whole host of factors. Learn to rely on both perceived effort and heart rate to train effectively.

HEART-RATE TRAINING ZONES: Zone 1: lactate threshold minus 15-22% Zone 2: lactate threshold minus 9-14% Zone 3: lactate threshold minus 4-8% Zone 4: lactate threshold minus 0-3% (this is the heart rate at which you would race 10km of running or 40km of cycling) Zone 5: lactate threshold plus 0-8%

TRAINING OVERVIEW: WEEKS 9 THROUGH 12 Swim • As we get closer to the event, we will move away from the longer sets and focus on threshold, speed and strength sets. • Pace work and threshold swims incorporate some work at just slower than goal 1500m race pace to reinforce race-specific efficiency of movement and mix in some threshold-boosting intervals at just faster than 1500m pace. There is much more emphasis now on faster, threshold swimming.

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• Speed work helps boost race-start speed and enhances your ability to get into a better draft. It also is useful to be able to ramp up your stroke rate mid-swim to catch a group or reaccelerate after rounding a turn. • We maintain pull and paddles work to lengthen your stroke and strengthen your shoulders, lats and triceps. This prepares your shoulders for the added resistance of wetsuit swimming as well. Bike • Riding at lower cadences continues in order to maintain strength and muscular endurance; however, the heart-rate prescription rises for these intervals as we progress throughout the final four weeks. This will target increases in your lactate threshold, as will work done in heart-rate zone 4 at road-race cadence (90-plus) on the trainer. • Strength-and-endurance rides on your mountain bike combine on- and off-road portions now. The on-road portions allow for even heart rate and target specific training zones for a prolonged period. The off-road segments will produce fluctuations and spikes in heart rate and cadence. If varying terrain isn’t available, incorporate regular sections of low cadence and standing sprints to adapt the body for race day, as indicated. • Note targeted sections of the ride to be aggressive with your pacing. Don’t choose a course so technical that you can’t get any physical training benefits.

• We also revisit the road for a base ride in week 9, your bike-emphasis week, to level off heart rates and train specific aerobic zones. • On recovery days, find a technical loop and practice your skills. Stay within your skill set and do not take any unnecessary risks. You should be offroad two times per week now. Run • Hill repeats get shorter and faster to build dynamic strength and lacticacid tolerance. Make sure to warm up and cool down well. Choose a grade that is steep enough to give you some resistance but not so steep that you can’t run with rhythm or a decent stride length. • There are more brick runs, and we continue with brick runs on hilly terrain at a high pace. This will teach you to run well on tired legs. Your body will become more efficient at running off the bike with practice. Simulate hilly XTERRA trail conditions with these. • Tempo running is sustained running at or near threshold. • Aerobic capacity-building base runs, gradually building heart rate and pace on flat terrain, will allow you to adapt to holding your running rhythm as you fatigue. Flat runs emphasize the importance of maintaining run cadence and an even turnover.

STRENGTH TRAINING Strength training is optional, and if you haven’t started yet, then it is best not to incorporate it into this program. If you have been strength training, then in weeks 9 and 10 maintain lower repetitions and increased resistance. Stop lifting for weeks 11 and 12 as you get closer to your key event to maximize recovery and performance on race day.

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

Rich Cruse

Endurance, hill strength and agility are typical XTERRA skill requirements. Your ability to focus and keep your legs moving as you duck branches, hop streams and power across sandy beaches takes strength and mental fortitude. Work on downhill running and learn to turn over your legs quickly when your are tired. Fall forward with high heels on the recovery portion of your run stride. Let your stride open up. Your legs can gradually get conditioned to the pounding of downhill running. Run trails often and learn to trust your peripheral vision to move fluidly through rough terrain.


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TRAINING LAB RABBIT

Swim: 4:30 Bike: 3:00 Run: 4:35

WEEK 9 WEEK 10 WEEK 11

Swim: 4:15 Bike: 3:15 Run: 2:20 Swim: 3:00 Bike: 1:55 Run: 0:35

WEEK 12

Swim: 4:30 Bike: 9:15 Run: 1:30

TRAINING: WEEKS 9-12 Monday

Tuesday

Day off: Walk, stretch

Swim 1:30: Threshold: 2000-3000m. Main set: 12-20 x 100 (20 seconds recovery). At goal 1500m pace minus 2-3 seconds/100m Bike 1:15: Strength: 75-90 minutes including 2-3 x 12 minutes (3 minutes recovery) @ 55 RPM. HR zone 3. Run 0:35: Off the bike 15 minutes easy aerobic. Include 5-8 x 30second hill sprints. Full rest. Cool down to 40 minutes total run time

Day off: Walk, stretch

Swim 1:30: Threshold. 2000-3000m. Main set: 400 (30 seconds recovery), followed by 6-12 x 100 (20 seconds recovery). At goal 1500m pace minus 2-3 seconds/100m Run 1:15: Strength & threshold: After a good warm-up include: 10-16 x 1 minute (on 2 minutes recovery) hills. Choose a moderate hill of 46%. HR zone 5 for the last three-quarters of the set

Day off: Walk, stretch

Swim 1:30: Pace & threshold. 15002500m. Main set: 2-3 x 200 (30 seconds recovery) at goal 1500m pace; 8-12 x 50 (20 seconds recovery) threshold building at goal 1500m pace minus 2 seconds/50m Bike 1:15: MTB aerobic ride, but test technical skills

Day off: Walk, stretch

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Swim 1:30: Threshold. 1000-1500m. Main set: 4-8 x 100 (30 seconds recovery) threshold building at goal 1500m pace minus 2 seconds/50m

Wednesday

Thursday

Bike 1:15: Threshold: 7590 minutes including 6-12 x 3 minutes (2 minutes recovery) @ 90 RPM, HR zone 4-5 Strength: Optional 60 minutes. 2/3 of the session is hip flexor, gluteus and legs focused. 1/3 is core & upper body. Moderate weights, 8-12 repetitions. Choose different lifts than on your weekend session

Swim 1:30: Strength. Total 2000-3000m. Main Set: 2 x 300500m (30 seconds) pull with no paddles. 5-10 x 100m (20 seconds) pull with paddles. Swim this set with a controlled, long and strong stroke Bike 1:15: MTB 60-90 minutes aerobic. Test technical skills Run 0:20: Endurance off the bike. 15-20 minutes on flat terrain. HR zone 2

Bike 1:00: Strength & Threshold. Trainer 60-75 minutes. 2-3 x 6 minutes (3 minutes) as 2 minutes @ 50rpm, 2 minutes @ 55 rpm, 2 minutes @ 60rpm, all in the same gear. HR rises to zone 4. Run 0:20: Endurance. Off the bike. 15-20 minutes flat terrain HR zone 2 Strength: Optional 60 minutes. Two-thirds of session is hip flexor, gluteus and legs focused. One-third is core & upper body. Moderate weight 812 reps. Choose different lifts than your weekend session

Swim 1:30: Strength. 2000-3000m. Main set: 3-4 x 200m (20 seconds recovery) pull with no paddles. 10-20 x 50 (15 seconds recovery) pull with paddles. Swim this set with a controlled, long and strong stroke Run 1:10: Building to tempo. Flat run on road or trail. Build from zone 1 to 3 to 4 and back to zone 1 for the final quarter. Increase pace by increasing cadence first and stride length second

Run 0:35: Off the bike, run 15 minutes easy, then 5-8 x 30-second hill sprints. Full rest. Cool down

Swim 1:15: Recovery & technique. 15002000m. Main set: 2 x (8 x 50 drill on 20 seconds recovery); 200 perfect technique Run 0:55: Endurance/hilly offroad. After warming up, hit HR zone 3 on the climbs. The balance is HR zone 1-2

Bike 0:45: MTB. Aerobic, but test technical skills Run 0:20: Off the bike, run tempo 5 minutes in HR zone 4 followed by 15 minutes in HR zone 1

Swim 1:30: Speed. 1000-1500m. Main set: 8-10 x 50m (30 seconds recovery) as 25 sprint/25 easy Bike 0:40: Threshold. Include 4-6 x 2 minutes (2 minutes recovery) @ 90 RPM, HR zone 4-5

Friday

Saturday

Sunday

Day off: Walk, stretch Optional: Swim recovery (1000m2000m as 50% drills) or bike recovery ride 6090 minutes flat

Bike 2:30: MTB. Strength & endurance. 2-3 hours. The first half of this ride is on-road, flat to rolling. After warm-up, ride 30-45 minutes hard tempo in HR zone 4 at 90-95 RPM. Ride the second half of your ride off-road. Pick a hilly trail network that is intermediate in technical challenge. Ride 30-45 minutes of this off-road portion aggressively, letting HR climb to zone 4-5 on sharper climbs. If hilly terrain is not available, incorporate 2 minutes @ 55 RPM (HR zone 3-4), and 3 x 20 seconds standing sprint (HR zone 5) every 6 minutes within the key 30- to 45-minute section Run 0:35: Threshold 30-40 minutes off the bike as 10-20 minutes very hilly, fast tempo. HR zone 4. Cool-down 20 minutes

Bike 3:00: Road ride aerobic base on hilly terrain. HR rises to zone 3 on the climbs Swim 1:30: Speed. 2000m-3000m. Main set: 16-24 x 50m (30 seconds). Maintain best average pace for the set Strength: Optional 60 minutes. 2/3 of the session is hip flexor, gluteus and legs focused. 1/3 is core & upper body. Moderate weights, 8-12 repetitions. Choose different lifts than your mid-week session

Bike 2:00: MTB. Strength & endurance. The first half of this ride is on-road, flat to rolling. After warm-up, ride 2030 minutes hard tempo in HR zone 4 at 90-95 RPM. Ride second half off-road. Pick a hilly trail network that is intermediate in technical challenge. Ride 20-30 minutes of off-road portion aggressively, letting HR climb to zone 4-5 on sharper climbs. If hilly terrain is not available, include 3 minutes @ 55 RPM (HR zone 3-4) and 3 x 20 seconds standing sprint (HR zone 5) every 8 minutes within the key 20-30 minutes section Run 0:35: Threshold off the bike. 10-20 minutes very hilly, fast tempo in HR zone 4. Cool down 20 minutes

Run 1:15: Endurance & aerobic capacity. Flat run on road or trail. Build this run by thirds, from HR zone 1 to 2 to 3 Swim 1:30: Speed. 2000-3000m. Main set: 15-20 x 50m (30 seconds recovery) best average pace for the set. Attempt to better last weekâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s splits Strength: Optional 60 minutes. Two-thirds of session is hip flexor, gluteus and legs focused. One-third is core & upper body. Moderate weight 8-12 reps. Choose different lifts than your midweek session

Day off: Walk, stretch

Bike 2:00: MTB. Strength & endurance. The first half is on-road, flat to rolling. After warm-up, ride 20-30 minutes hard tempo in HR zone 4 at 90-95 RPM. Ride the second half off-road. Pick a hilly trail network that is intermediate in technical challenge. Ride in HR zone 1-2, focusing on smooth climbing and descending

Run 0:50: Build to tempo. Flat run on road or trail. Build from zone 1 to 4 and back to zone 1 for the final quarter. Increase pace by increasing cadence first and stride length second Swim 1:30: Speed. 2000-3000m. Main set: 15-20 x 50m (30 seconds recovery) as 25 sprint/25 easy

Day off: Walk, stretch

Bike 0:30: MTB. Aerobic, but test technical skills Run 0:15: Endurance. 10-15 minutes flat terrain, HR zone 2

XTERRA race day!

Day off: Walk, stretch Optional: Swim recovery (10002000m as 50% drills); or bike recovery for 6090 minutes flat

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M


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TRAINING LANE LINES

Different strokes Break down your freestyle to boost your efficiency By Matt Fitzgerald and Lance Watson hen swim experts communicate with athletes about freestyle technique, they usually talk about the things every swimmer should do: maintain a high float, rotate their body, pull with a high elbow and so forth. There is a simple rationale for this emphasis: The freestyle technique of every great swimmer includes these elements. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s impossible to become a great swimmer without them. Nevertheless, an important fact is obscured by our natural focus on the universal elements of effective freestyle technique: No two great swimmers swim in exactly the same way. Despite all the

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universals, each top swimmer has a style of freestyle swimming that is unique. To be sure, the swim strokes of any two professional triathletes are likely to be much more similar than those of any two newbies without a competitive-swimming background. Few if any of the universal elements of effective freestyle technique are natural to beginners, so it makes sense for coaches to concentrate their efforts on removing the idiosyncrasies from the strokes of their beginning athletes and instilling the universals. But because each swimmer is unique, it would be a mistake for any coach to try too hard to make all of his or her swimmers swim exactly alike.

There are certain specific technique variables for which different choices work best for different swimmers. To reach your full potential as a swimmer, you need to train in a way that allows you to find and cultivate these points of individual technique optimization while also mastering the universal elements of good technique. These areas of freedom include stroke rate, kick pattern, arm cycle, recovery style and breathing pattern. Stroke rate: Just as there are some elite cyclists who time trial at 85 RPM and others that do so at 100 RPM, there is also a wide degree of variation in the stroke rates that work best for top triathlon swimmers. Shorter athletes with more aerobic power than muscle power tend to swim better with a higher stroke rate. Taller, lankier triathletes with great feel for the water tend to prefer a slower stroke rate. How do you find the stroke rate that works best for you? First, consistently train to maximize your distance per stroke by performing drills to improve your T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M


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hydrodynamics, using paddles to build a more powerful pull and counting your strokes to objectify your progress. Next, consider using a tempo trainer to test how different stroke rates affect your times in all-out efforts of 100 to 400 yards. Start by setting the tempo trainer at a tempo that’s a little slower than your natural stroke rate. Then move it up to your natural stroke rate and continue increasing it until your times stop improving. (Make sure you’re sufficiently recovered for each effort so fatigue does not bias your results.) The stroke rate that results in the fastest times is your optimal stroke rate. It’s a good idea to do this type of test three or four times a year, as changes in your swimming fitness and proficiency may change your optimal stroke rate. Also, understand that your optimal stroke rate is likely to be different at various distances, so be sure to test at longer distances that are more race-specific. Kick pattern: The kick is perhaps the most variable technique element. Some athletes achieve success with a strong,

patient two-beat kick. Others find more speed with a fluttering, efficient six-beat kick. A two-beat kick is more common among triathletes, but even within the two-beat tempo there are several possible variations in rhythm. The best kick for each individual is the one that interferes the least with body position and stroke rhythm. While it’s nice to have a powerfully propulsive kick for fast starts and surges, the main job of your kick is to help lift your body into a high float position, aid in body rotation and boost the glide between arm pulls. The greatest improvements in your individual kicking style will come from practicing simple body awareness during your workouts. Focus your attention on your body position, rotation and feel for the water during the pull phase and allow your kick to naturally evolve in ways that enhance these more important aspects of your technique. This is precisely how the top triathlon swimmers stumble upon the asymmetrical kick patterns and other idiosyncrasies that make their swim stroke different and better than that of the rest of us.

Arm recovery: Arm-recovery styles vary from straight-arm to sharply bent elbow. Janet Evans made the straightarm recovery famous in showing off her windmill arm cycle en route to winning five medals in the 1988 and 1992 Olympics. At the other extreme is fivetime triathlon world champion Simon Lessing who nearly drags his fingertips along the surface of the water during his arm recovery. Most swimmers fall somewhere between these extremes. So, which style of arm recovery is best for you? The best technique for arm recovery is the one that allows your elbow to travel straight up the midline of your body while keeping your upper shoulder above the water. Generally speaking, a straighter arm recovery works best for swimmers with a high degree of shoulder flexibility while a bent-arm recovery is necessary for those with tighter shoulders. Arm cycle: There are three basic armcycle rhythms used in freestyle swimming. • In the traditional 90-degree rhythm, the pulling arm is pointing directly

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T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M


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toward the bottom of the pool just as the hand of the recovery arm enters the water (such that the two arms form a 90-degree angle). • In the rotary rhythm, the pulling arm is already past the midway point of the pull as the recovery arm enters the water. This is used primarily by sprinters. • The third arm-cycle rhythm is known as front-quadrant swimming, where the lead arm is left extended in front of the body until the hand of the recovery arm has come as far forward as the head. If you’re familiar with the catchup drill, front-quadrant swimming is like a partial catch-up freestyle stroke. This rhythm works well for those who have good hydrodynamics, and when done well it is an excellent energy saver for long-distance swimmers. Most triathletes who do not already excel using the 90-degree rhythm will get better results from learning front-quadrant rhythm. It can’t hurt to try it. To do so, perform a drill sequence in which you swim a few laps of the catch-up drill

(delaying the pull until the recovery hand meets the lead hand), then a few laps of the cheating catch-up (delaying the pull until the recovery hand is about eight inches behind the lead hand) and finally a few laps of front-quadrant swimming (delaying the pull until the recovery hand is even with your head). Once you’ve become comfortable with the front-quadrant rhythm, test it against your normal rhythm in long, timed intervals or time trials to see which rhythm produces the best results. Breathing: Breathing patterns are widely accepted to be a matter of personal preference. The most common breathing patterns among triathlon swimmers are every two strokes and every three. The two rules of breathing technique are: • Breathe as often as you need to, and not more often • Breathe in a way that does not negatively affect your overall stroke efficiency In order to breathe as often as necessary you must be able to breathe comfortably on both sides. Those who breathe only on

TAKE-HOME MESSAGE When swim experts communicate with athletes about freestyle technique, they usually talk about the things every swimmer should do: maintain a high float, rotate their body, pull with a high elbow. To reach your full potential as a swimmer, you need to train in a way that allows you to find and cultivate individual technique optimization while also mastering the universal elements of good technique. These areas of freedom include stroke rate, kick pattern, arm cycle, recovery style and breathing pattern. one side usually swim with a lack of leftright symmetry, which spoils their efficiency. Learning to breathe bilaterally usually irons out these asymmetries, even when the swimmer subsequently chooses to breathe on one side more often than the other. Bilateral breathing mastery comes from simply forcing yourself to breathe on your weak side often during workouts.

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for poor mountain-biking skills. Always the smart-ass, I couldn’t resist yelling, “Didja have fun?” It was sad, really, because he was on some of the sweetest singletrack in the Rockies, and the glare he shot back at me was evidence that he hadn’t enjoyed his ride at all. I was too late to spare my buddy a lot of frustration, but here are some key tips to help you enjoy—rather than simply endure—the mountain-bike leg of your next off-road tri.

John Segesta/Wahoomedia.com

TACKLING THE HILLS

Roll on 5 tips to master the ups & downs of off-road triathlon By Jim Rutberg 1 3 4 J U LY 2 0 0 7

he idea for this article occurred to me as I watched a friend roll his mountain bike into T2 at the XTERRA race in Crested Butte, Colo., last summer. Somewhere underneath the blood and mud was a strong and talented triathlete, but he had made the crucial mistake of believing superior fitness could compensate

T

Most off-road triathlons include at least one significant climb. A combination of skills and pacing will get you to the top quickly and with enough energy left to stay focused on the descent. Specifically: 1. Manage your cadence: The right cadence keeps your legs fresher and helps with traction on singletrack trails. Your back tire can lose traction if you’re either stomping on a big gear or spinning a super-light gear very quickly. Try something in the middle, around 70-85 rpm. 2. Watch your gears: Both the pitch and difficulty of mountain-bike climbs change frequently, and it helps to be able to shift gears accordingly. As much as possible, you want to shift only your rear derailleur while climbing. This means using the front derailleur judiciously to keep the chain near the middle of your rear cog set. Why? If you’re riding in the middle chain ring and your easiest cog and you reach a steep pitch, your only option for shifting into an easier gear is to move the chain to the small chainring. Even with new, more precise drivetrains, this can be problematic because the chain is under tension and you risk dropping the chain off the front rings completely. Riding in the middle ring and easiest cog is roughly equivalent to riding in the small chainring and the middle of your cassette. The difference is that you have more flexibility when in the granny gear to shift up and down a gear or two when necessary. 3. Master tight uphill corners: Switchbacks can be the novice mountain biker’s nemesis, but with a little focus and practice you can stay on your bike and gain a lot of time over your competition. Approach the corner far to the outside of the turn, keep the bike upright (don’t lean) and steer your front wheel around the outside of the corner. The inside line may look tempting, but it’s often too steep, too

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tight and too hard to gain traction on. Interestingly, on really tight turns, your rear wheel will take a shorter route and almost pivot instead of following your front wheel. Experiment with gearing during training rides—you may find that a slightly bigger gear helps you maintain traction and get back up to speed coming out of the switchback.

DESCENDING CUES There are some basic essentials, like looking far ahead of you (look where you want to go, rather than fixating on something you’d like to avoid), shifting your weight back and avoiding the temptation to grab a handful of front brake, that have been covered extensively since the inception of mountain biking. So let’s skip ahead to these key pointers: 1. Find the fast line through tight downhill corners: The fastest route downhill through switchbacks may not be the same one you followed going up. You still approach the corner by steering toward the outside of the trail, but then you brake before you get to the corner and steer toward the apex. Look

through the turn to where you want to go; don’t look at the ground right in the middle of the turn. By turning around the apex, you’ll have room to move toward the outside of the trail as you exit the turn. It’s a mark of superior skill if you can minimize the amount of sliding you do through these sharp corners. 2. Preserve your speed: When the going gets rough, speed is your friend. The slower you go through rocks and roots, the more likely you are to get stuck, stopped or bucked right off the bike. That doesn’t mean you should just close your eyes, let off the brakes and hope for the best, either. Keep your weight back, let the suspension do its job to keep your front wheel tracking over the bumps, and if you start to stall be ready to add more power with some big-gear pedal strokes to keep your momentum going.

REMEMBER THE BIG PICTURE Shakespeare was right: Discretion is the better part of valor. A planned dismount from a mountain bike is far less painful than an unexpected one, and carrying your

TAKE-HOME MESSAGE The right cadence keeps your legs fresher and helps with traction on singletrack trails. Both the pitch and difficulty of mountainbike climbs change frequently, and it helps to be able to shift gears accordingly. Look through the turn to where you want to go; don’t look at the ground right in the middle of the turn. By turning around the apex, you’ll have room to move toward the outside of the trail as you exit the turn. When the going gets rough, speed is your friend. bike up and down over a few obstacles (a rock garden, big drop-offs or big logs) will often get you to T2 more quickly than if you have to pick yourself up off the ground a few times. Jim Rutberg is a Pro Coach for Carmichael Training Systems, Inc. and co-author of five books with Chris Carmichael, including the NYT bestseller, Chris Carmichael’s Food for Fitness: Eat Right to Train Right and 5 Essentials for a Winning Life.

Know your distance. SWIM IT. RIDE IT. RUN IT. MAP IT. LOG IT. SHARE IT AT WWW.MAPMYTRI.COM


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Dare to be different Strength and power exercises to enhance your training By Dave Scott A

loads without suffering crippling muscular failure can improve 3-8 percent in six weeks. Significant? Absolutely. By integrating a strength/power routine with the exercises suggested below (two times per week) and inserting the following VO2 workouts (one time per week per discipline), a positive improvement can be measured by the end of the six-week block.

The advantages of the strength/power exercises (listed on page 137 and illustrated throughout) are as follows: • Enhance recruitment of the fast-twitch IIa & IIb muscle fibers, which can fatigue significantly in triathletes if they are not specifically trained • Boost connective-tissue strength, which supports the muscles, tendons and ligaments • Improve joint integrity and strength • Increase core, hip, glute, quad, calf and foot muscular strength • Stimulate eccentric (muscle lengthening under tension) stress, which ultimately elevates power/strength

just finished watching the cyclo-cross world championship and marveled at the athletes’ cycling skills while racing through mud and knee-deep sand, wading through water hazards, jumping over roots and rocks—and culminating with a run up a 20-degree slope, all while carrying their bikes swinging wildly above their shoulders. Their mastery of balance and stability while riding and running combined with short intermittent bursts of power while traversing the most improbable terrain— simply incredible. Certainly cyclo-cross, if you have ever seen the sport or actually participated in it, is an extraordinarily demanding event on your skeletal, muscular and cardiovascular systems. Frankly, some of the more adventurous triathlons (think Escape from Alcatraz, Wildflower, among others), and

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certainly the XTERRA races, offer hearty fare similar to the demands of cyclo-cross. Even if you don’t regularly race triathlons that feature frenetic run starts to begin the swim, bike courses that have multiple turns and twists and quick climbs, plus a host of uphills, downhills and a variety of running surfaces, it may be worthwhile to consider boosting your ability to both produce power and sustain your power output. Now, I’m not suggesting that you eliminate your long day B or your threshold training—rather, if you have a hilly race on your schedule or feel that power/strength is a personal limiter you may benefit from implementing a short, sixweek power cycle. By combining strength exercises that enhance peak power with specific swimbike-run workouts that develop sustained power, your ability to maintain higher work-

John Segesta/wahoomedia.com

One of the greatest athletes in the history of the sport, Dave Scott takes a wholistic view of his training and coaching, ensuring that every workout complements the big picture. To that end, Dave, below, presents a strength program that will benefit your running but which is also designed to have a positive effect on the other two sports. —Ed.

The advantages of the below VO2 sets (which begin on page 137) are as follows: • Elevate overall capacity of maximal oxygen consumption (VO2 max) • Recruit larger and more forceful muscle contractions, which elevate byproducts such as lactic acid • Teach the body to resynthesize lactate (lactic acid converts to lactate) at a faster rate than lower-intensity training • Elevate the heart rate above lactate threshold, which is a stimulus for aerobic/anaerobic training • Develop the capacity to recover from repeated high-intensity efforts

John Segesta/wahoomedia.com

THE BENEFITS OF THE SIX-WEEK PROGRAM

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M


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C

Perform the below set two times per week. These exercises can be included within your other strength and injury-prevention exercises.

EXERCISE

(A) Plank Elbow Touches

(B) Plank Jumps

John Segesta/wahoomedia.com

(C) Airplane

SETS

3

3

3

REPS

RECOVERY

COMMENTS

8-12 each side

Exercises A, B, C are done in succession with a 90-second rest interval, and then repeat

Keep hips slightly elevated

8-12

Neck in neutral position, jump about 12-24 inches

6-10

Hold arms straight in prone position for 1-3 seconds

VO2 SETS

Swim: All efforts are very hard to very, very hard unless described otherwise. Set description: • Warm-up • Swim 4 x 50 (at 95-percent effort). Rest Interval = 10 seconds

Know your distance. SWIM IT. RIDE IT. RUN IT. MAP IT. LOG IT. SHARE IT AT WWW.MAPMYTRI.COM


Project1

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ON THE RUN TRAINING

• Swim 100 hard. Goal is average 50 time (as above) doubled plus 4 seconds • Swim 400. Goal on 400 is to swim the first 100 at your aerobic speed, or approximately 12-16 seconds slower than your hard 100. The remaining 300 is very easy •Rest three minutes, then repeat the set twice for a total of 2100 yards/meters Bike: All efforts are hard to very hard. Set description: • Warm-up • 4 x 7 minutes as: The first 90 seconds of each seven-minute repeat is all standing in your choice of gear. The next four minutes should be seated in your time-trial gear. Over the final 90 seconds of each seven-minute interval, alternate between 15 seconds standing and 15 seconds seated in a bigger gear. Your heart rate should increase throughout the set with peak heart rate and power output over the final 90 seconds • Spin five minutes between repeats with the initial 90 seconds at aerobic speed, then the remaining time very easy

Run: Hard to very, very hard. Set description: • Warm-up • 5 x 4 minutes with a rest interval of 15 seconds. The set can be run on a track or looped course or with a GPS to measure the distance. This is only used as a means of comparing speed, heart rate, time and distance. Run each 4-minute segment as hard to very, very hard. Jog 15 seconds easy at the end of each four-minute work interval • After each 15-second jog, include a 60-second burst at an intensity slightly above that of the fourminute block • After this 60-second burst, jog easily for 4 minutes before beginning the next 4-minute interval. • Cool-down These workouts can be inserted as a lead up to any distance of racing. They should be included at least once per week prior to your event. Dare to try something different. These workouts will make you faster.

TAKE-HOME MESSAGE Even if you don’t regularly race triathlons that feature frenetic run starts to begin the swim, bike courses that have multiple turns and twists and quick climbs, plus a host of uphills, downhills and a variety of running surfaces, it may be worthwhile to consider boosting your ability to both produce power and sustain your power output. If you have a hilly race on your schedule or feel that power/strength is a personal limiter, you may benefit from implementing a short sixweek power cycle. Combining strength exercises that enhance peak power and specific swim-bike-run workouts that develop sustained power, your ability to maintain higher workloads without crippling muscular failure can improve 3-8 percent in six weeks. Dave Scott is a six-time Ironman world champion and the first inductee into the Ironman Hall of Fame. Today, Dave trains several top professional and age-group triathletes and has recently completed a DVD on nutrition called The Art and Science of Fueling, for Pre, During and Post Endurance Training and Racing available at davescottinc.com.

Know your distance. SWIM IT. RIDE IT. RUN IT. MAP IT. LOG IT. SHARE IT AT WWW.MAPMYTRI.COM


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Take control Getting back to nutrition basics By Marni Rakes MS, CISSN riginally created as a tool for diabetics, the Glycemic Index (GI) is a helpful system of ranking foods in relation to the impact they have on blood-glucose levels. Managing your blood-glucose levels is important for your health and fitness. Proper bloodglucose management requires that you time your nutrition properly and also that you know why you are consuming various types of carbohydrate-containing foods. Carbohydrates that are digested slowly and produce a small fluctuation in bloodsugar levels are given a low ranking on the GI scale. In contrast, carbohydrates that produce a rapid rise in blood-glucose levels are considered high-GI carbohydrates and are given a high value on the GI scale. Higher GI foods are best eaten in the earlier part of the day and, above all, during and after a workout to help speed glycogen replenishment. The following foods contribute to a high ranking on the GI index:

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• White bread, white potatoes (refined/enriched = high GI) • Watermelon (less fiber = high GI) • Rice (less protein = high GI) • Noodles (slow cooking time = high GI) • Cereal, waffles, pancakes (simple sugar = high GI) In contrast, lower GI foods should be consumed in the later part of the day and are preferable at least 30 minutes to an hour before a workout. The following foods will contribute to a low ranking on the GI index: • Whole-wheat bread, oats (less refined = low GI) • Apple, pear, figs (soluble fiber = low GI) • Lean meat, egg whites, cottage cheese, skim/soy milk (high in protein = low GI) • Whole-wheat pasta, (al dente/less time = low GI) • Nuts (unsaturated fat = low GI) To help regulate blood-sugar levels, you must learn to eat practically and recognize the needs of your body. In other words, eat frequently, include protein and fat at all meals and control portions when snacking. Based on the GI scale, the following carbohydrates should be eaten as a part of your daily diet to help keep blood-sugar levels stable. • Whole-wheat grains, rye or stoneground bread • Oats, oatmeal • Lentils, beans • Vegetables (carrots, peas, asparagus, broccoli, corn) • Fruits (figs, apples, pears, prunes, apricots, ripe bananas) • High-fiber cereals • Whole-wheat pasta (al dente) • Brown rice, couscous

DON’T FORGET THE PROTEIN One of the best methods for controlling your appetite and fostering a speedy recovery after exercise is through the consumption of dietary protein. Research shows that consuming a protein beverage immediately after exercise helps to repair damaged muscle tissues. The ideal recovery nutrition source is a 150- to 200-calorie liquid-protein and carbohydrate snack consumed immediately after exercise. In addition to myriad sports-nutrition drinks and bars designed specifically to enhance post-exercise muscle repair and recovery, you can also consider a few low-tech solutions such as milk with cereal, yogurt with granola or egg whites and a piece of toast. Vegetarians, who sometimes fall short of complete-protein consumption, should emphasize complementary proteins at least once a day, such as

lentils with spaghetti, tofu added to vegetables or beans with salad. Although daily recommendations suggest 1.2-1.4 g/kg/day of protein for active individuals (sedentary intake = .8 g/kg/day), endurance athletes should consume 1.4-1.8 g/kg/day. Aim for a protein-intake level of approximately 20-25 percent of your total daily calories. (Each gram of protein provides four calories.) The following foods are great options for meeting your daily protein requirements: • Fish (salmon, tuna) • Lean meat/soy meat • Nuts • Beans, lentils • Tofu • Skim/soy milk • Whey/soy protein powder • Low-sugar yogurt • Low-fat cheese • Low-fat cottage cheese • No sugar added ice cream • Eggs (one yolk per two whites)/egg substitute

TIMING YOUR EATING Because the body stores carbohydrates in limited quantities, it is important to eat throughout the day. To keep your bloodsugar levels stable and energy stores replete, aim to eat five to seven small meals daily. As the intensity and duration of exercise increases (to more than 85 percent of max heart rate or to more than 60-90 minutes per day), the need for more carbohydrates will similarly increase. About one to two hours prior to training, consume a low-GI snack with approximately 30-50 grams of carbohydrate. Additionally, hydrate with 16-20 ounces of fluid at least 60 minutes prior to training. Within 30 minutes to an hour after training or racing, consume a 30to 50-gram high-GI carbohydrate snack and an additional 10-20 grams of protein. In addition to swimming, cycling and running, include sports nutrition as an integral part of your training plan. Whether you are hopeful for a Kona slot or considering your first Olympic-distance triathlon, improve your performance by learning how to eat practically and taking control of your nutrition. Marni Rakes is a triathlete who holds a Master of Science in exercise physiology. She is also a certified sports nutritionist through the International Society of Sports Nutrition. Currently serving as the USAT Florida Region Director, Rakes is also a USAT Level 1 Coach. For more, please contact mrakes1@hotmail.com or visit trimarni.com.

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

John Segesta/wahoomedia.com

TRAINING SPORTS NUTRITION


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TRAINING SPEED LAB

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In the zone Are you going hard or going backwards? By Tim Mickleborough, Ph.D. DEAR SPEED LAB, I have a question about training and racing in different zones (aerobic and anaerobic). As I understand it, when you are in your anaerobic zone you are predominantly using glycogen/sugar to produce energy. Is it true that once you have entered the anaerobic zone you cannot revert to burning fats (aerobic zone)? Letâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s say that during a triathlon you hit a hill hard and enter into the anaerobic zone; is it at all possible to revert to the aerobic zone after the hill without bonking because of the hill climb? Can you move between these zones? David Tempe, Ariz. David, Thanks for the interesting question. A brief explanation of

the interaction of carbohydrate and fat metabolism during exercise is required here. During rest and low-intensity exercise, plasma fatty acids (available from fat-tissue stores) and muscle triglycerides are our dominant source of energy. However, bear in mind that carbohydrates (what you call sugars) also contribute energy, available as glycogen (the stored form of glucose) in muscle and glucose in blood. Think of fats as the burner in a gas stove and carbohydrates as the pilot light. When a person goes from walking to running a marathon and then to racing a 10K, there is a steady increase in the total rate of energy expenditure from both fats and carbohydrates, but there is also a dramatic change in the relative contributions of each fuel source. T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M


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Have a question for Speed Lab? If so, please e-mail it to speedlab@juno.com. For example, a marathon may typically be run between 65-85 percent of VO2 max. At 65 percent of VO2 max, there is a greater relative energy contribution from glucose (sugars) and muscle triglycerides than from plasma fatty acids. There is negligible muscle-glycogen contribution at this exercise intensity. As the exercise intensity increases from 65 to 85 percent of VO2 max, the increasing contribution from plasma glucose continues, and the energy contribution from muscle triglycerides and plasma fatty acids declines. The majority of additional required energy comes from muscle-glycogen stores. Beyond approximately 85 percent of VO2 max there is increased oxygen demand for anaerobic metabolism (what you call the anaerobic zone) for which only carbohydrates (sugars) can be utilized. Performance at such high intensity levels is limited by the accumulation of blood and tissue lactic acid. Lactic acid is produced during anaerobic metabolism, resulting in fatigue. However, to directly answer your question, you can shift between energy substrate utilization zones. For example, if you slow your running pace to 65 percent of VO2 max (aerobic) after running at 85 percent of VO2 max (anaerobic) for a short period of time, you will start to use more muscle triglycerides and blood glucose, and muscle-glycogen usage will decline. But it takes time to lower your blood-lactate levels, and accumulated blood lactate will continue to affect your exercise performance until it has dropped sufficiently. In addition, lactate can be processed in the liver to resynthesize glucose, which can then be considered an additional fuel source. So, what happens if you run in your anaerobic zone (e.g., 85 percent of VO2 max) for too long and thus build up high levels of lactic acid and deplete your muscle-glycogen stores before dropping back into the aerobic zone (e.g., 65 percent of VO2 max)? Your high blood-lactate levels will be detrimental to continued exercise performance and your low carbohydrate stores will impede efficient fat metabolism. Dear Speed Lab, I am recovering from injury and I was wondering how long it takes to lose the gains in fitness achieved prior to an injury. If there are major losses, what are they? Daniel Daniel, Injured athletes commonly fear that the fitness they have gained through hard train-

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ing will be lost after a few days or weeks without training. It is true that at some point a reduction in training or outright inactivity will result in a deterioration of performance. Unfortunately, fitness is quickly lost when the athlete stops all training. With the cessation of training, improvements in VO2 max, maximal cardiac output, skeletal muscle capillarization and the aerobic capacity of the arm/leg muscles vanish at varied rates. If, for some reason, the endurance athlete is unable to train for just one week, the muscles’ aerobic capacity may decline by 10 to 15 percent. This finding is supported by observations that the activities of the mitochondrial enzymes are dramatically reduced with the cessation of exercise. The concentration of these enzymes may start to decline as early as 48 hours after stopping exercise. Another important change that takes place as a consequence of detraining is a reduction in the number of capillaries, which deliver oxygen and nutrients and surround each muscle fiber. This decrease can be as much as 10 to 20 percent within five to 12 days after the cessation of exercise. This results in the impairment of oxygen delivery and the ability of the cells to produce energy. During the same period of inactivity, the capacity of the heart to pump blood during a maximal effort starts to decrease. The combination of a lower maximal cardiac output and reduced blood flow around the muscle fibers lessens the transport of oxygen to the athlete’s muscle fibers and slows the removal of waste products (e.g., lactic acid) from the working muscles. The burning question: how quickly will exercise performance be affected after an athlete stops all training? In most cases a measurable loss of performance will be observed after five to seven days and will steadily increase as the duration of the layoff increases.

REFERENCES: 1. Costill, D.L., Fink, W.J., Hargreaves, M., King, D.S, Thomas, R. and Fielding, R. (1985). “Metabolic characteristics of skeletal muscle during detraining from competitive swimming,” Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 17: 339-343. 2. Houston, M.E., Bentzen, H. and Larsen, H (1979). “Interrelationships between skeletal muscle adaptations and performance as studied by detraining and retraining.” Acta Physiol Scand, 105: 163-170.

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The chain gang Triathletes can choose from myriad bike chains, but when does compatibility become an issue? By Ian Buchanan TECH SUPPORT, I’ve received conflicting recommendations as to what chain brand to use and why. Are there any meaningful differences between chains, and does the chain you use really matter? Sean Sean, A bike is a sum of its parts, and it only takes one of those parts not interacting well with the others for the bike not to work well. Your chain is at the heart of your drivetrain and is crucial to powering your bike forward and to shifting performance; therefore, compatibility and durability are a must, and mechanical serviceability is a consideration as well. In other words, what chain you use can really matter. Compatibility: One might think that chain compatibility would be as simple as finding a chain made for the number of gears as you have on your rear cassette. There was a time when that was pretty much true. However, with the advent of the 10-speed drivetrain found on most road and tri bikes today, tolerances and spacing became so tight that chains have become more brand-specific. Shimano and SRAM 10-speed-compatible chains tend to be very close to 5.9mm wide, while Campagnolo 10-speed-compatible chains are a little

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wider at 6.1mm. While 0.2mm is a pretty small number, it can be a meaningful number. At certain chain angles, if your chain is too wide or too narrow for the drivetrain it is being used on, the likelihood of the chain catching on the other teeth in the drivetrain and creating skipping, noise or inconsistent operation will be higher. If you want guaranteed compatibility, you should stick with the same brand of chain, derailleurs and shift levers. This said, as long as the dimensions are very similar, chain brands are often interchangeable. SRAM 10-speed chains share the same width as Shimano and usually work interchangeably. Wippermann makes two widths of its Connex chains: “S” labeled models (10SO, for example) designed to be compatible with Shimano; and non-S series (1008, for example) chains designed to work with Campagnolo. Durability: The old adage of a chain only being as strong as its weakest link is true; all it takes is one pin or link to fail and your bike will come to a stop in a hurry. Usually, this weakest link is the chain’s master link or pin, which can sometimes be compromised at installation or simply may not be as strong as the permanent links surrounding it. All of the chains from the established builders are reliable; however, if you have to pick a weakest link, the mas-

ter pins that Shimano chains use seem to be a bit more finicky than the rest. This said, we still recommend Shimano chains frequently as they shift exceptionally well when used with other Shimano components and the failure rate, when properly installed, is still low. When it comes to how long the chain lasts, every rider has his or her own maintenance and wear patterns that affect the stretch and service life of the chain. The cleaner and better lubricated you keep your drivetrain, the longer the chain will last. This said, I’ve seen powerful riders stretch 10-speed chains to the point of needing replacement in less than 1200 miles, while lighter riders can often go well above 2000 miles. Higher-quality chains will often use nickel or even stainless steel in their construction to increase resistance to stretching, and some models even offer weight-saving features like hollow pins. Wippermann offers the broadest range of material and coating options—even offering a $400 titanium chain. Serviceability: If you only remove your chain to replace it, ease of removal will not matter much; however, if you like to remove your chain for cleaning or servicing, some chains are easier than others. Nine- and 10speed chains made by Wippermann offer a removable and reusable Connex link, while SRAM chains offer a removable and reusable PowerLink on their nine-speed chains and a single-use PowerLink on their 10-speed chains. Shimano and Campagnolo chains attach with special single-use pins, and Campagnolo says that its pin has to be installed with a special (and pricey) chain breaker. You can replace Campagnolo and Shimano’s one-time use pins with an aftermarket master link (like Forster’s SuperLink) that allows you to remove the chain without having to install a new pin. Forster also makes a replaceable SuperLink to replace SRAM’s single-use PowerLink. There are a few models of SuperLink available, and it is important to use a model that is compatible with your chain. Enjoy the ride and train hard and smart! Ian Ian Buchanan is co-owner of Fit Werx. Fit Werx has locations in Waitsfield, Vt., and Peabody, Mass., and offers cycling and triathlon products, specialty fitting and analysis services, consultation and technology research. Fit Werx can be reached in Vermont at 802-496-7570, in Mass. at 978-5327348 or through the Web at fitwerx.com. T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

John Segesta/wahoomedia.com

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HEY COACHES,

Beating the bonk . . . And overcoming other race-day ordeals By Paul Huddle and Roch Frey

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Teresa, We are so jealous of your husband! You feed him well and ask questions for him? Can we move in for a few months? We get in trouble for leaving the toilet seat up (everyday) and only get out of laundry duty once a year on our birthdays. As for your question: when you say debilitating, that sends up a red flag. We know you are ruling out medical problems, but we still have to caution you that if it hurts that much, nothing we can suggest is going to be a surefire cure and there may be something else at work, so please stay on top of this and continue to pursue it from all angles, including with your doctor. We do think it’s worthwhile for him to try to get something (some fluid with carbs and electrolytes) into his system in advance of a workout. A totally empty stomach could present this type of problem. It’s possible to go too far the other way, too, and get cramped up from having too much in the stomach, but if he’s going into a workout empty and dehydrated, consuming a sports drink or water and a gel in the 30 minutes before the workout (and/or a more substantial snack such as an energy bar 90 to 120 minutes before) would be worth trying. If it’s muscular and not digestive, then he should be sure to warm up and stretch the torso before getting into the key part of the workout. Alternatively, it could actually be gas, in which case something like a Tums or Gas-X might calm things down, but having to rely on something like that isn’t necessarily the

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I am actually writing for my husband because I don’t think he would ever write in and ask you a question. He is training for IM Wisconsin. The problem is that he suffers from severe and often debilitating pain in the stomach that occurs mostly with running, but it also happens when he is swimming or biking. He describes the feeling as like bad gas pain. He has suffered from hyponatremia and runner’s trots in the past, so he knows what they feel like and he claims this is different. From a medical point of view, nothing is going on. Is there something he should (or shouldn’t) be eating before or during these runs? I try to feed him well. He works very long hours and often does not get to eat dinner before 9:30 at night. He usually works out between 5-7 p.m. on weekdays. Should he be eating a small meal or snack before the gym? Teresa


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best approach. Again, we are not docs, so check with the professionals (we mean have your husband check) if the problems hang around much longer. Good luck, and thanks for looking out for your hubby. Roch and Paul

DEAR COACHES, If I bonk during an Ironman race (whether it’s during the run or bike), can I recover and continue to finish? To what extent should I push myself in training to experience bonking so I know what to expect if it should happen during the race? Tony

John Segesta/wahoomedia.com

Tony, You are sounding like a newby who has never had the experience of bonking halfway through a 100-mile ride, pulling into a 7-Eleven and scarfing down a twoliter bottle of Mountain Dew, two brownies

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and a Twix bar and then going on to a record ride home. Not to worry—you will one day experience this beautiful thing. If you run out of fuel during the race, the solution is to simply slow down and reverse the slide by taking in nutrition while proceeding at a pace that allows you to absorb the calories and start to make up

the deficit. If it happens on the bike, which it won’t because you are going to nail down your nutrition plan before race day and stick to it (right?), that hopefully will just mean slowing down and spinning for a bit as you get some food in. On the run, you may need to walk or stop, then eat and drink until you feel better—

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though hopefully it won’t come to that. You’ll need to take in carbohydrates, whether in the form of more of what you have been eating all along or in the form of something new like cola, cookies or other emergency food you may find at an aid station. Note, however, that a lack of electrolytes can produce bonk-like symptoms (and/or prevent absorption of the calories you are taking in).In this case, try to rebalance your electrolytes by ingesting salty foods (like pretzels or chicken broth at an aid station) or salt tablets (which you will carry with you at all times and also place in your specialneeds bag, correct?). You never forget your first real bonk, but it’s not something that should necessarily be practiced. It’s much better to learn to fuel properly and then stay on top of it. A bad bonk, even in training, and even if you recover sufficiently to get home without breaking out the cell phone and calling for a mercy ride, isn’t exactly good training and it can have an adverse effect on future workouts. Undoubtedly there will be a time or two when you don’t take in quite

enough on your long ride and you start to feel like garbage and end up cutting it short or limping home only to spend four hours on the couch watching cartoons and eating everything in the fridge, then sleeping for 12 hours. But don’t make a habit of it, especially on race day. Roch and Paul

HEY GUYS, Training has been going well, but my calves get sore after some of the long weekend runs. In fact, the soreness runs up to the backs of my knees. Have you ever heard of this? Thanks, Sean Sean, Soreness in the calves is not uncommon. One possibility is you may be relying on more of a forefoot strike during longer runs when a mid-foot strike would be less destructive. It also could be caused from faster running during your speed work, which often forces you to rely more on the smaller muscles of the calves (in contrast,

during a longer, slower effort you would be recruiting more quads). This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it does take some getting used to. Pain further up the back of the knee (maybe the popliteus muscle or tendon insertions) isn’t as easy to diagnose or deal with. If you’ve got a lot more going on than just symmetrical aches in the meat of your calves you may want to check with a physiotherapist or sports doc to see what they say. Be sure your shoes are not too far gone. If in doubt, get a new pair to use on your longer runs to ensure proper cushioning and biomechanics. Icing your calves might help, and be sure to keep them stretched out (but don’t overstretch the back of the knee). Also, keep well hydrated and keep your electrolytes in balance. The last thing you need is a nasty cramp in an already tired calf muscle. Massage (self-massage, maybe with a stick roller or from a professional) would also facilitate recovery. Hope this helps, Paul and Roch

" NBU U FS PG TIBQF  DPOOF 9 CZ 8 * 1 1 & 3 . " / / 6 / * 2 6 & 0 6 5 & 3 1 - "5 & % & 4 * ( /

All Wippermann conneX chains feature our innovative link technology for full compatibility with Wider outer plate with chamfered inner sides is the secret !

all gear systems. Our outer plates have a widened (almost straight) middle section and chamfered inside edge that allows the chain to engage the cog or chainring teeth more quickly. The benefits are: - Faster and more precise shifting - Reduced gear component wear - Smooth and noise-free performance conneX by WIPPERMANN – simply the better shape !

info@velimpex.com · www.wippermann.com Available at selected bicycle shops throughout the U. S. and Canada.


TRAINING PEAK’S Training Plans Training Peaks has developed a series of triathlon-training plans for all levels of multisport athletes. There are 40 complete plans for every level of triathlete, from newbies to pros, and for every distance, from sprints to Ironman. Each plan has been designed by Matt Fitzgerald, a Triathlete contributing editor, certified coach and author of Triathlete Magazine's Complete Triathlon Book and Triathlete Magazine's Essential Week-by-Week Training Guide. Everyone who signs up for a training plan will receive a free copy of Essential Week-by-Week Training Guide

EVERY PLAN INCLUDES: • • • • • •

Nightly e-mails of your workouts A daily log to track your workouts Powerful calendar lets you change the plan to fit your schedule Interactive graphs to track your progress Monitor your nutrition with the integrated Nutrition Tracker Moderated message boards to get your tough training questions answered

Sign up for your interactive plan at

TrainingPeaks.com


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TRAINING

Health check The benefits of blood testing for triathletes By Paul Regensburg and Dr. Gordon Sleivert

The value of testing will be typically realized over the long term after repeated measurement of your blood biochemistry. A result that falls outside of the normal range is not necessarily cause for concern but could be caused by a recent event such as a viral infection. It is therefore important to carefully consider these results and not overreact, although you should check with your doctor for further explanation when an abnormal result does occur.

HOW TO GET A BLOOD TEST ow on energy? Feeling sick? Wondering if your training is improving your fitness and the ability of your blood to carry more oxygen to your muscles? Blood testing can be a very useful way to answer all of these questions and more. Triathletes of all abilities should include blood testing in their routine, as it is a direct measurement of the health status required for optimal training adaptation and performance. It can also track physiological adaptations that may result from training and other interventions.

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Normally a doctor will prescribe a blood test for you and you will go to a lab or hospital to get the blood work completed. When you request a blood test, be sure to ask that you receive a Ferritin count, as it is not always standard in every blood test. Blood test results can vary greatly and are often affected by factors including hydration, fatigue and diet. In order to maximize the consistency of these measures, a standardized protocol of obtaining the blood sample should be followed: • Blood samples should be obtained in

the morning • Avoid any exercise prior to the test • Avoid heavy training on the previous day • Be well hydrated (clear urine) • Posture should be controlled in a standardized fashion for at least 20 minutes (sitting is fine)

HOW TO INTERPRET YOUR BLOOD-TEST RESULTS When you receive your blood-test results, the paperwork will typically list the markers tested along with your results and the units used to measure each marker. Usually, the document will show the normal ranges and flag one of your markers if it falls outside of the normal ranges. Below is a list of the common markers that triathletes should monitor, along with a description of what they mean. We have broken these key markers down into two categories: • Markers that affect iron level and oxygen-carrying capacity • Markers that directly affect your health and immune responses

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IRON STATUS AND OXYGEN-CARRYING CAPACITY MARKERS The following blood markers provide information about the blood’s ability to transport oxygen. If these values are low, then training and/or performance can be impaired and you may feel abnormally fatigued. Ferritin: Ferritin is a protein used to store iron. Its concentration gives a good indicator of the size of the body’s iron stores. A value below the normal range indicates iron deficiency, which can lead to lethargy and anemia. For endurance athletes, low ferritin levels (< 30mU/ml for males and < 20mU/ml females) may provide an early-warning sign that the body’s oxygen-carrying capacity could be threatened. Thus, supplementation (250-400 mg per day) may be required; however, check with your doctor before beginning supplementation. Red blood cells (RBC): Red blood cells (known as erythrocytes) are very important for transporting oxygen from the lungs to the tissues. The condition known as anemia is defined as an abnormally low hemoglobin concentration and may be caused by iron deficiency or a failure to produce sufficient numbers of red blood cells (which, in turn, could be due to a deficiency of vitamin B12 and/or folic acid). People suffering from anemia have a reduced exercise capacity and generally feel lethargic. Hemoglobin (HGB): Hemoglobin is the oxygen-carrying pigment in your red blood cells. Its function is to transport oxygen via the red blood cells from the lungs to the working muscles. Thus, hemoglobin is vital to both endurance performance and good health. If your hemoglobin levels are low, then the blood’s oxygen-carrying capacity is minimized, which can reduce your capacity to sustain exercise. In contrast, a level of hemoglobin at the upper end of the expected range is beneficial to aerobic endurance since the body is able to optimize oxygen transportation. Hematocrit (HCT): Your hematocrit level measures the amount of red blood cells in a given volume of blood and is also referred to as packed cell volume. Essentially, hematocrit levels are affected by the number of red blood cells and the size of these cells, though they can also be affected by hydration status, posture and exercise. The normal value for hematocrit is 45 percent in male athletes and 43 percent in female athletes, although the precise measured value can vary according to your level of hydration. In addition, a lower

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Cycling Running Swimming Triathlon

info@hannulink.com www.hannulink.com

Quality made in Germany hematocrit level is frequently observed in triathletes since endurance training causes an expansion of the plasma volume. This condition is sometimes referred to as sports anemia, but it’s a good thing, not a bad thing. Mean cell volume (MCV): This is an estimate of the volume of red blood cells.

It is useful for determining the type of anemia a person might have. A low MCV may indicate iron deficiency or anemia due to blood-cell destruction or bonemarrow disorders. A high MCV may indicate anemia due to nutritional deficiencies such as vitamin B12 deficiency, certain diseases or drug effects.

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Mean cell hemoglobin (MCH) and mean cell hemoglobin concentration (MCHC): These factors provide further information regarding anemia. The MCH is the hemoglobin content of the average red blood cell. The MCHC is the average hemoglobin concentration in a given volume of packed red cells. The MCH may be low in types of anemia where the red blood cells are abnormally small or high in other types of anemia where the red blood cells are enlarged (for example, as a result of folic acid or vitamin B12 deficiency). The MCHC is low in iron deficiency, blood loss, pregnancy and anemia caused by chronic disease. Reticulocytes: These are immature red blood cells, which typically make up less than 1 percent of the red blood cell population. In the presence of some forms of anemia the body increases production of red blood cells and sends these cells into the bloodstream before they are mature. Values may be low in the case of iron deficiency or high after altitude exposure or when treating anemia or iron deficiency.

trap, neutralize and kill invading pathogens (micro-organisms capable of causing illness). There are many different types of white blood cells with specific functions to protect you against infection. Heavy training can depress WBC numbers and reduce your resistance to infection, so it can be useful to monitor this marker for changes. Platelets: These cells are involved in clotting. The values may be low due to recent viral infections and/or medications. Understanding these blood markers will help you gain a better understanding of yourself and may provide some firm rationale for why youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve been feeling weak or strong. Get your blood tested two times per year or more often if you have reason to believe you may be at risk for low iron or want to track your hematocrit. Testing is relatively easy if you plan for it, and it will provide you with measures of basic blood parameters, further educating you about your own health and performance.

IMMUNE RESPONSE MARKERS

Dr. Gordon Sleivert holds a Ph.D. in exercise physiology and is the vice-president of sport development for the PacificSport National Sport Centre in Canada. Paul Regensburg is an Olympic, Pan Am Games and Ironman coach and team manager. Visit lifesport.ca for more information.

Some of the measurements obtained from blood testing provide information about immunity and the ability of your body to resist infections and viruses. White Blood Cells (WBC): White blood cells (known as leukocytes) find,

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The XTERRA Green Team Pitching in for the community By Trey Garman erhaps nobody on the XTERRA planet has a closer relationship with Mother Nature than Barbara Peterson—the Mother of XTERRA. In her rock-hopping, root-stomping, tree-lined six-year career, the 50-year-young Peterson has competed in more than three-dozen XTERRA races in several countries around the world. Along the way she’s collected six XTERRA national championships, five XTERRA world championships, a pair of XTERRA European Tour titles and has displayed the utmost respect for the environment in which she’s played. Thus, it comes as no surprise that Peterson, a pioneer and activist in environmental issues surrounding mountain biking since the early ’80s, is at the forefront of the XTERRA Green Team movement.

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“I see this program as a chance in life, especially as an off-road triathlete doing XTERRA, to race at another level,” Peterson says, a Berkeley, California-based writer and jewelry maker. That level is “competition with sustainability, meaning as competitors we are also conscious of our immediate surroundings and are willing and able to give something back to the local race community and environment where we race.” When fellow XTERRA age grouper Yvonne Kraus, a community-outreach and public-involvement consultant based in the Pacific Northwest, approached Peterson with the concept of starting an XTERRA Green Team, the abstract ideal of preserving and protecting the areas in which we race transformed into an organized and straightforward plan of action for the future. The first project that the XTERRA Green Team is involved with takes place at the XTERRA Vashon Island race in Washington State on July 15. The Green Team has joined forces with BikeWorks, a Seattle non-profit organization (see bikeworks.org) to collect donated used

Safford

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gear: water bottles, stickers, bike shoes, clothing, tubes, tires and any bike component still in decent shape. The second-hand gear is used by BikeWorks to educate children about bicycle mechanics, provide affordable bike services to the community and ultimately build sustainable communities by educating youth and promoting bicycling. For example, Earn-a-Bike is an initiative where kids have the opportunity to master the basics of bike repair in eight fun classes. During Earn-a-Bike time outside of class, donated bikes are used as guinea pigs to practice new skills and as a way for kids to earn their own recycled cycle to take home. “After the XTERRA world championship in Maui last year I left a few gear items behind. It was the end of the season and I didn’t want to bring them back to the mainland,” Kraus says. “I had done that at other races before and I’m certain other athletes do it as well, especially the more serious racers or those who regularly receive new gear from sponsors. So, why not tap this resource and help others?” The next step is to take the bike-cycling idea to every XTERRA venue in the world;

this way, athletes have a legit outlet to drop off gear they would like to donate for distribution to local inner-city bicycle programs, under-privileged area kids and other targeted organizations that help the less fortunate. The second project is a stream-restoration work party in Incline Village, Nev., home to the XTERRA USA Championship. “Donate your time, your brawny back and your enthusiasm to help restore the banks of the stream we cross multiple times during our run, and show your appreciation to Incline Village for hosting us year after year,” urged Kraus. “And if you really love the idea, help us coordinate more work parties at other races this year and next year.” By contributing a few hours of time to local environmental enterprises near XTERRA race courses—and this could be anything from trail maintenance to park clean-up, ecological restoration or tree planting—the XTERRA Green team aims to make a difference from the ground up. “Honestly, in imagining the mechanics of this kind of program, and how it could be, I thought about Richmond as an example,” Peterson says. “The possibilities for XTERRA athletes to contribute

to ecological enhancements or urban beautification in downtown Richmond are tremendous. Goodness, it would be really fun and rewarding and so positive for the general ecology of this city and the same kinds of things could be done everywhere we go.” “The inspiration behind this came primarily from my XTERRA race experience last summer, traveling to various countries, seeing and experiencing incredible natural areas and scenery close to urban areas and meeting inspiring people,” Kraus says. “In my work I’ve specialized in green building and sustainability, and I thought how great it would be to combine my professional experience with my XTERRA passion.” If you’ve got an idea or are interested in getting involved or coordinating other events, you’ll find contact information for Barbara and Yvonne and more information on the program at xterraplanet.com/greenteam. “I believe sustainability, thinking green, giving back and generosity of spirit are the absolute next steps for everyone on this planet,” Peterson says.

Now Available in a Great Tasting Bar

1,000mg Electrolytes Per Serving

With the new EFS endurance bar, you get the same award-winning EFS drink formula in a great tasting bar that provides ALL the ingredients you need to maximize performance. EFS bars and drinks are fortified with a clinically effective dose of amino acids to improve glycogen resynthesis and delay central fatigue(1). Plus, EFS bars and drinks give you all five electrolytes, in the levels endurance athletes require, to prevent cramping and dehydration(2). So you don’t need to carry those extra electrolyte pills or add anything else to your bottles anymore. Times have changed. firstendurance.com or 866.347.7811

(1) Bassit RA, et. al, Branched-chain amino acid supplementation and the immune response of long-distance athletes. Nutrition. 2002 May;18(5):376-9 (2) Brouns, F., et al. 1992 Rationale for upper limits of electrolyte replacement during exercise. Int J Sport Nutr 2:229-38.

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Cannondale Rush Carbon Team

Photo supplied by manufacturer

By Jay Prasuhn

A forgiving ride with stellar balance, the Rush Carbon retails complete with SRAM’s X.O groupset at $6,500. his issue came as a treat. It’s our XTERRA special issue, so we figured why not test a mountain bike? Kinda need one of those to race an XTERRA, right? To that end, the test conveniently fell during my prep for XTERRA Temecula, and Cannondale obliged, sending along its cross-country/all-mountain racer, the Rush Carbon Team. When I think of an XC bike, a little image of Ren Höek, that neurotic Chihuahua in Ren & Stimpy, comes to mind: light, neurotic, twitchy, erratic and totally unpredictable. For XTERRA racers who hate being pitched over the bars for the tiniest of handling errors, the Rush Carbon can solve your man-down blues. How so? The Rush Carbon is relaxed as cross-country bikes go. It’s more all-mountain than pure XC, aiming at 24-hour riders and other long-ride athletes, where fatigue and ensuing rider error are commonplace and should not be penalized by the bike. Attractive attributes include a relaxed 69degree head angle and a relatively low bottom-bracket shell. Each translates into a bike that steers precisely, but more predictably, and which will allow you that fatigued first 10 minutes out of the water to go forth without making you pay for it. Cannondale’s proprietary Lefty Speed Carbon Si fork paired with the 110mm of rear travel on a Fox RP 32 shock promises a

T

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plush descending ride. For the occasional XTERRA guy (like myself), that’s a very welcome feature when descending over fast singletrack and going blindly into a rock garden, where handling, blind faith and supple suspension will get you through. A switchback climb and the ensuing descent proved that point; I was able to nip around the jutting rocks at the turns, then carried easily over them when bombing back downhill. The SRAM X.O-outfitted Rush Carbon is loaded with Cannondale-only stuff including the Si crankset and the oversized Si headset, steerer and stem (the stem is offered in nine lengths and rises for fit perfection). In addition, this was our first chance to ride the 2.7-pound Lefty fork and prove to ourselves that no, it won’t snap off at the axle. Front-wheel removal requires one 5mm allen key to unthread the center axle and remove the front brake from the fork mount to allow the disc rotor to clear it when sliding off the wheel. We took our test bike into some coastal scrub trails. First impressions? It’s a lot easier to handle than I initially thought. Usually out of the water I want to cruise the bike, get the heart rate in check and slowly let the blood move from arms to legs. Fatigue and sloppy bike handling during this time on a hyper-aggressive XC bike usually result in a spill or two. No such skitterishness here—that more forgiving geom-

etry makes it easy to navigate while shaking the water from your ears. At the same time, it’s no La-Z-Boy when charging. The Lefty fork has a lockout dial for the climbs and flips open to go active on the descents. Same goes for the Fox shock on the aluminum single-pivot rear swingarm, giving you 110mm of travel or lockout on either end of the bike. But as much as I tout its forgiving handling, it’s still plenty nimble under quick hands to dart around rocks and roots at speed. Is the Rush for you? If you’re like me, hitting the trails in the off-season for fun and a couple times before an XTERRA— this is the race geometry that will keep you on two wheels toward T2 instead of off in the brush. But the experienced mountain biker going XTERRA might find it a bit too well behaved for their more aggressive riding. In which case, something like the lighter, nimbler Scalpel might be the right call. That aside, then, is the carbon Rush for you? If your bank account doesn’t flinch at the $6,500 price tag for a 24-pound race rig, go get it. But if your finances dictate going away from the carbon front-end and fork to an alloy frame and a lower groupset spec for close to half the price of the carbon version, then the Rush 4 might be in your roundhouse. For more on the Rush Carbon, visit cannondale.com.

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2007 SCHEDULE - DATE / EVENT / LOCATION 03.11 XTERRA GUAM / Piti, GU 03.17 XTERRA SAIPAN CHAMPIONSHIP / CNMI 04.01 XTERRA MIAMI / North Miami, FL 04.01 XTERRA REAL / Granite Bay, CA 04.21 XTERRA ARIZONA XTREME / Mesa, AZ 04.28 XTERRA FT. YARGO / Winder, GA 04.28 XTERRA GATOR TERRA / Ruston, LA 04.29 XTERRA CASTAIC / Castaic, CA 05.06 XTERRA UWHARRIE / Uwharrie, NC 05.20 XTERRA PATANELLA'S KING OF THE HILL 05.20 05.20 05.20 05.27 06.03 06.03 06.09 06.10 06.10 06.16 06.17 06.23 06.23 06.23 06.24 06.24 07.08 07.08 07.14 07.15 07.15 07.15 07.15 07.21 07.22 07.28 07.29 07.29 07.29 08.05 08.05 08.05 08.05 08.12 08.12 08.18 08.18 08.19 08.25 08.26 08.26 08.26 09.02 09.29 09.30 10.28

Lebanon, NJ XTERRA LAST STAND / Augusta, MI XTERRA DIRTY / Canyon Lakes, TX XTERRA WESTCHAMPIONSHIP / Temecula,CA XTERRA SMITH LAKE / Fort Bragg, NC XTERRA ACE BIG CANYON / Oak Hill, WV XTERRA DEUCES WILD / Show Low, AZ XTERRA EUREKA SPRINGS / Eureka Springs, AR XTERRA TRIMAX / Mifflinburg, PA XTERRA SOUTHEAST CHAMPIONSHIP Pelham, AL XTERRA BUFFALO CREEK / Buffalo Creek, CO XTERRA EASTCHAMPIONSHIP / Richmond,VA XTERRA DAWG DAYZ / Little Rock, AR XTERRA SOLSTICE / La Grande, OR XTERRA TAHOE CITY / Tahoe City, CA XTERRA GARNET HILL / North River, NY XTERRA TORN SHIRT / Brighton, MI XTERRA M2XTREME / Ellicottville, NY XTERRA LOCK 4 BLAST / Gallatin, TN XTERRA IRON CREEK / Spearfish, SD XTERRA THOMPSON LAKE / Poland, ME XTERRA EX2 / Flintstone, MD XTERRA MIDWEST MUDDER / Lawrence, KS XTERRA VASHON ISLAND / Vashon Island, WA XTERRA HAMMERMAN / Anchorage, AK XTERRA WILD HORSE CREEK / Bozeman, MT XTERRA DINO NEW CASTLE / New Castle, IN XTERRA SKY HIGH / Grafton, NY XTERRA FIRST COAST / Jacksonville, FL CRESTED BUTTE BANK XTERRA Crested Butte, CO XTERRA APPALACHIA / Indiana, PA XTERRA PANTHER CREEK / Morristown, TN XTERRA CAMP EAGLE / Rocksprings, TX XTERRA SNOW VALLEY / Running Springs, CA XTERRA STOAKED / Hanover, NH XTERRA IRON WILL / Jonesboro, AR XTERRA DINO LOGANSPORT / Logansport, IN XTERRA MOUNTAIN CHAMPIONSHIP Ogden/Snowbasin, UT XTERRA CHARLOTTESVILLE / Charlottesville,VA XTERRA MOUNTAINMAN / Kaaawa, HI XTERRA SCHIFF SCOUT / Wading River, NY XTERRA BLACKHAWK / Muskegon, MI XTERRA WILD RIDE / McCall, ID XTERRA ONTEORA / Livingston Manor, NY XTERRA NEVADA / Lake Tahoe, NV XTERRA USA CHAMPIONSHIP / Nevada XTERRA WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP / Maui, HI

XTERRA CHAMPIONSHIPSERIES RACES IN RED. XTERRA POINTS SERIES RACES IN WHITE. Schedule subject to changes. As of January 3, 2007.


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Hamstring curls are a great way to strengthen your cycling legs.

All tied up with TRX Strength training in its simplest form By Rebecca Roozen Photography by Jay Prasuhn ith all the gear we manage to hoard for swimming, cycling and running, wouldn’t it be convenient if our strength training didn’t consist of bulky weights and workout machines? The TRX System offers just that: a small, light and simple strengthtraining solution for triathletes, using your own body weight as resistance. Everything you need—literally a few sturdy straps and a carabiner—folds into the size of a shoe and weighs less than two pounds. All you need is a doorframe, tree limb, basketball hoop, fence or piece of playground equipment and you’re all hooked up.

W

TRX ORIGINS In his 13 years as part of the U.S. Navy SEALs, Randy Hetrick identified a need for SEALS to maintain and improve their fitness while deployed. With little or no sufficient equipment or space, Hetrick concocted the idea of what has today turned into the TRX System. At first, only select members of his unit used the apparatus for performance training and injury rehabilitation. With feedback from the SEALs, Hetrick improved the design and more exercises surfaced. The athletes realized the system was perfect for building functional fitness. With

that success, Hetrick refined the product with skills learned while customizing gear in the SEAL team and soon after commercialized it.

TRX FOR TRIATHLETES The TRX adapts to all fitness levels, with three main principles of progression: vector resistance, stability and pendulum principles, which keep the exercises challenging. Vector resistance involves changing your working body angle and center of gravity. You can adjust the intensity of the exercise by simply making your angle more or less steep. The stability principle

The single-arm power pull stretches and strengthens your entire core. 1 5 8 J U LY 2 0 0 7

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M


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Work your running legs with the suspended lunge.

The suspended pike/pushup is ideal for working your swimming muscles. deals with the bodyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s base of support and center of gravity affecting intensity. The wider the base of support, the easier the exercise. If you narrow it, the exercise becomes more challenging as you have to call on other muscles to stabilize the movement. Finally, the pendulum principle is relevant in floor exercises where the body is in a suspended position, such as the push up. You can adjust the difficulty by moving either behind or in front of neutral (neutral is directly below the anchor). The further you get in front of neutral, the harder the exercise because you now have to overcome the angular forces at work.

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There are more than 300 functional exercises: A few favorites for triathletes are the hamstring curl, single-arm power pull, suspended lunge and suspended pike/push-up (all shown here). The training DVD will take you through the TRX set-up and provides a number workouts. Or, you can go to fitnessanywhere.com to view videos of both. The TRX Professional Kit sells for $149.95 and the TRX Force Training Kit, which includes a TRX Door Anchor, Military Fitness Guide and TRX Storage Bag, sells for $199.95.

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Off-the-beaten-path parts Top-10 XTERRA gear picks By Jay Prasuhn

The discipline of off-road racing requires specialized equipment. Tougher, stronger and more durable become the mantra. Here are 10 of Triathlete’s recommendations for musthave off-road tri gear.

Felt Virtue Three $2,699 The first full-suspension bike in Felt’s line, the Virtue debuted this year to enthusiastic reviews, thanks to its Equilink rear suspension that provides five inches of travel with a kickback- and bob-resistant design that stiffens the rear triangle on climbs. A hydroformed aluminum frame, Shimano disc brakes and an XT/LX drivetrain polish this mid-tier bike in the Virtue line. We tried this bike for a lap at Interbike. Then a second lap. And a third. Perfect for the challenges of XTERRA; it’s a fun, light, responsive rig, at a killer price. feltracing.com

Continental Speed King ProTection $46

All images courtesy the manufacturers

Tire choice over varied courses is a great idea, but how many of us want to change tires off the back of our tailgate at the race site? In that case, an all-conditions tire does the trick. The Speed King offers just that—low rolling resistance on the fire-road straights, deep, widely spaced knobs for traction over wet ground, hard shoulder knobs for predictable handling and traction during hard or loosepack cornering. Add DuraSkin sidewalls for protection, and the Speed King is your all-conditions all-star. conti-online.com, bikemine.com

FSA Carbon Pro Team Crankset $600 FSA applies the immensely popular hollow-carbon crankarm technology, found in its Carbon Pro road crankset, to mountain biking with the debut of the Carbon Pro Team crankset. The Carbon Pro Team soared in German EFBe stiffness-to-weight tests, proving that monocoque hollow carbon has a place even in off-road racing. Comes with FSA’s ceramic bottom bracket and is set up in a 22/32/44-tooth configuration, in 170 and 175mm lengths. fullspeedahead.com

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Titec Hellcat bar ($40), Hellcat grip ($8) and Hellbent H-Bar ($90) Tapering to a smaller diameter at the ends (20 percent smaller than conventional bars), the Hellcat bar and matching Hellcat grip are built for comfort and easy shifting for smaller hands. Matching up with the aluminum Hellcat bar is the Kraton rubber Hellcat grip, which is also thinner than other gripsâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;perfect for smaller hands to wrap around. And the H-Bar? This unconventional 6160 aluminum bar (using bar-tape wrap in lieu of grips) offers innumerable hand positions for power, comfort and control while climbing, descending or cruising. titec.com

All images courtesy the manufacturers

Trek Team Comp Glove $35 We canâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t overstate this enough: You gotta wear full-finger gloves for XTERRA or face (pick one, or all) painful blisters, cuts and scratches. The full-finger Team Comp has ventilated knuckle protection and a comfy Pittards leather palm with silicone patches for sure grip over the rocks. trekbikes.com

Intense Spider $1,820 frameset, $3,500 complete The choice of Canadians Brent McMahon and Mike Vine and U.S. national XTERRA champ Seth Wealing, the Spider boasts the patented VPP (Virtual Pivot Point) rear-wheel travel that allows the suspension to be active over bumps while eliminating pedal bob. We Flume Trail-tested the Spider at Tahoe last year and loved its nimble handling and appreciated the light weight on that loooong climb out of the swim. Also available in a superlight FRO (for race only) and in 29-inch wheel versions as well. intensecycles.com

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champion Michellie Jones Relies on MOTOR TABS™ Fluid Replacement System… Shouldn’t You? • Effervescent Electrolyte/Energy Tablets • Optimal Levels of Sodium and Potassium • Multiple Carbohydrate Blend Each 20 Gram Effervescent Tablet Delivers:

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Shimano PD M-970 $180 After years of number-based pedals, Shimano finally created a pedal worthy of bearing its top-end XTR branding. Theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve revised the SPD cleat interface for better engagement and stability. The open design still retains its exceptional mud-shedding capability and ultra-durable and serviceable spindle. shimano.com

Like Burger King, SRAM says you can have it your way. The new 2008 carbon and aluminum cage of the X.O rear derailleur (available in three cage lengths) pairs seamlessly with either of two shifter options: the light (195g/pair) twist shifter that made SRAM famous, or its popular trigger shifter. SRAM polishes off this 20thanniversary shifter set with gold bolts and graphics. sram.com

All images courtesy the manufacturers

SRAM X.O Gold Trigger Shifters ($234), Twist Shifters ($82) and Rear Derailleur ($230)


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GEAR BAG

Fi’zi:k Gobi $125

All images courtesy the manufacturers

Considering impact shock over hard hits, Fi’zi:k designed the Gobi with extra padding in the aft to disperse shock (a great feature, especially on hardtails) and of course offers the WingFlex. It’s built with the integrated clip system that mounts Fi’zi:k’s saddlebag or light to the saddle sans straps. fizik.it

Scott Spark 10 $6,149 Doing what it does best, Scott assembled a featherweight (23-pound) XC rig with a HMX carbon front end and matching CR1 carbon swingarm. Outfitted with SRAM X.O, the Spark 10 is a nimble bike that’ll get people’s attention, typically when you’re riding away from them on a switchback ascent. scottusa.com

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Jay Prasuhn

AT THE RACES

Sun-Beke’ed Rutger Beke notches Ironman win No. 1 in Arizona as Gollnick pips Zeiger for women’s title By Jay Prasuhn or Heather Gollnick, Ironman Arizona in Tempe on April 15 meant 576 minutes and 40 seconds of zero-letup racing. Thankfully for her, she needed just 12 minutes of it at the front, wresting the lead from leader Joanna Zeiger in the last two miles to take her fourth Ironman title, in 9:36:40. Heading down the finishing chute, Gollnick smartly bypassed her customary victory cartwheels, one for each career Ironman win. “My last Ironman win I did three and almost fell,” Gollnick said, laughing. “This time, with Joanna less than a minute behind,

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T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

I didn’t think that would be a good idea.” An exhausted Zeiger crossed in second place, just 49 seconds later. With the stress of a wrongful EPO accusation well behind him, Belgian Rutger Beke finally took his next step in long-course racing with his first Ironman win, holding off former Ironman world champ Tim DeBoom to win in 8:21:14. A windy day battered over 2,000 athletes on the bike and further taxed them with powerful headwinds on the threelap run around Tempe Town Lake.

ZEIGER LEADS EARLY BREAK In the women’s race, Zeiger, one of the fastest swimmers in short- or longcourse racing, exited the water in a racerecord 48:57 amid a group of top male pros and powered through the bike solo, with German Katja Schumacher and Denmark’s Lisbeth Kristensen pursuing over six minutes back and Gollnick over eight minutes down. By T2, Zeiger was happy to start the marathon in front with over five min-

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The men’s race saw a fitting firsttime Ironman winner in Beke. Talk for one minute with the friendly Belgian and you’ll see it: unabashed respect. Respect for his competitors, the sport, its history and direction. Which is why he was crushed when accused of doping in 2004, a charge he disputed and proved in court was due to the fact that his body produces proteins that resemble synthetic EPO markers. Finally cleared and focused on racing,

Jay Prasuhn

BEKE TAKES HIS FIRST IM TITLE

Jay Prasuhn

d’Alene in 2003) and runner-up finishes last year in Arizona and Coeur d’Alene and this year at New Zealand. “I was hurting that last lap, but I didn’t want another second-place finish.” Zeiger, who now turns her attention to the ITU world-rankings pursuit for the 2008 Olympics, was still pleased with her effort. “I led the whole day, so I can’t say I’m not disappointed,” Zeiger said. “I gave it all I had under some adverse conditions and got my Kona slot, which is what I came here for.”

utes on Schumacher and six minutes on Gollnick, but Zeiger’s speed on two wheels didn’t transfer to the run. “I rode the bike controlled, watched my watts,” Zeiger said, “but the run was its own entity; I just didn’t feel snappy. I hoped I would feel better, but I never got into a good rhythm.” By the time she heard Gollnick had passed Schumacher for second and was coming fast, just two minutes back, Zeiger had eight miles to go and was forced to turn herself inside out in an effort to hold off Gollnick. But at mile 25, Gollnick captured the lead. “Knowing how I felt, I was surprised I held her off as long as I did,” said Zeiger. With just over a mile left, Gollnick now had the lead and literally never looked back. “I thought [Zeiger] might try to hop on behind me into the wind, but she didn’t,” Gollnick said. Gollnick’s win comes after an Ironman victory drought (her last wins at Ironman Wisconsin and Coeur

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Kuotaon

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35.16

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04.15 20 07.0421 21

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23 02.0301 24 02.0401 25 02.0508

26 01.0202 27 02.1701 28 02-2001 29

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LouisGarneaium

18.04 80 19.0202 81

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28.05 112 29.01

Vy Ap Ra-Ca Tc Gi Gr Ta Lk Ko Fz Sm Rp Velocitium

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57

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82.00

Ra Tl Mj Cl St Wt Ko Tb El Gl Ah Sa Cf Bl Ca Racium

35.06

TupperLakeium

Michellium

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Sports scientists have released the latest version of the periodic table of triathlon elements. All of your elemental triathlon needs are able to be met by the first element, Ts, a.k.a. TriSports.com. First discovered in April of 2000, TriSports.com has been able to combine all of the other elements under one roof which has resulted in over 15,000 individual compounds all with our 100% in stock guarantee* with the exception of a select few elements like #100-102. Another new development worthy of mention is the Fly-n-Fit program, an opportu-

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he has devoted his efforts to getting that first Ironman win. Not surprisingly, Beke’s first comments weren’t about his day but addressed his experience among his peers. “I can’t believe it; I won my first Ironman against a good Tim DeBoom,” he said, with a massive smile stretched across his face. “I mean, he’s a two-time world champion!” Fortunately for Beke, however, his self-deprecating nature didn’t carry through to his racing. When he rode up to then-race leader DeBoom at mile 80 of the bike, the glad-handing was absent and tactics took over. “Last year [at the Hawaii Ironman], Thomas Hellriegel and I were riding together,” said Beke, “then [we] rested, then tried to get away and didn’t get away. He said, ‘If you’re going to pass someone, fly by them, so they don’t even think of getting on you.’” Beke shot past DeBoom, who thought better of the move with the run to come. Into T2, Beke had a 1:30 lead on DeBoom, with all other players essentially out of contention for the win, the closest athlete being defending race champion Michael Lovato 13 minutes back. Beke slowly stretched his lead to over four minutes, but while DeBoom (making his return from a stress fracture that kept him from racing in Kona last year) was suffering, so was Beke. “I wanted to stop so many times into the wind but I said, ‘No, if you stop once, you’ll stop again and again,’” Beke said. “And that was Tim behind me. I’m glad I didn’t. This is a happy day for me.”

2007 FORD IRONMAN ARIZONA Tempe, Ariz. April 15, 2007 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike, 26.2-mile run Women 1. Heather Gollnick (USA) 2. Joanna Zeiger (USA) 3. Katja Schumacher (GER) 4. Ute Mueckel (GER) 5. Terra Castro (USA) Men 1. Rutger Beke (BEL) 2. Tim DeBoom (USA) 3. Michael Lovato (USA) 4. Petr Vabrousek (CZE) 5. Jozsef Major (HUN)

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9:36:40 9:37:29 9:44:14 10:14:49 10:18:18

8:21:14 8:26:04 8:37:29 8:41:59 8:42:42

Jay Prasuhn

AT THE RACES

THE FLAG U.S. Marine Andrew Christian used Ironman Arizona—and a special American flag—to help raise awareness of injured soldiers. And Peter Reid was ready to lend a helping hand. Spectators at Ironman Arizona in Tempe may have noticed one runner in particular, a man completing the marathon with a full-sized American flag flying from a handheld staff as he ran. The man in question was Andrew Christian. Marine Captain Andrew Christian, a Special Forces Officer with the U.S. Marines stationed at Camp Pendleton, Calif. On Feb. 20, 2006, Christian and Staff Sergeant Jay Collado, First Lieutenant Justin Waldeck and Staff Sergeant Chris Claude were part of a three-vehicle convoy serving as advisors to an Iraqi infantry battalion. The convoy was attacked by insurgent forces in Karbala, their vehicle hit by an IED. Claude lost his right leg, Waldeck lost part of his hand. Collado was killed. Christian survived the attack, as did an American flag that was in their vehicle. “It happed 200 meters from the compound we train on,” Christian said. “It was an inside job—some of the guys we worked with sold us out. But that’s what solidified the team.” Last year, the 38-year-old husband and father made that flag a centerpiece toward healing. Christian did the Arizona Rock N’ Roll Marathon with that flag flying from a staff over his shoulder, raising enough money to set up a scholarship fund for Collado’s young daughter Kaiya. But as a multisport athlete for the last 20 years (he did his first triathlon fresh out of high school in 1986) and a longtime adventureracing and mountain-biking enthusiast, Christian wanted to do more. Christian opted to race Ironman Arizona (and complete the run with the flag) to raise awareness for the Semper Fi Fund (semperfifund.org), which provides injured Marines with equipment, home modifications other assistance.

“There’s a quote that goes around in the Marines,” says Christian: “America’s not at war, the Marine Corps is at war. America’s at the mall.” Prior to the race, Christian reached out to the bike community and Specialized answered, supplying him with a Transition Elite bike and Roval Race wheels. But then they went a bit further. They provided him with a coach and mentor: three-time Ironman world champion Peter Reid. Reid, a longtime Specialized athlete, laid out the plan; Christian posted his progress on workoutlog.com, and Reid monitored and altered Christian’s training leading up to the April race. “He was a dream to work with; he did the work and never complained,” Reid said. “I only coach eight athletes, and there were times when I told my girlfriend, ‘Why can’t all my athletes be like Andy?’ But he did tell me that while the one-day military training stuff is tough, Ironman training just wears on.’” When the two finally met at the race in Tempe, the awe went both ways. “When Specialized told me about him, I thought it was an amazing story,” Reid said. “There’s so much in the news, and here’s a guy who is willing to give back.” Christian was upbeat about his pre-race chances for a good day. “I’m not gonna get any fitter,” he said. “Peter’s taken me to a level I never thought I had.” And Christian lived up to Reid’s expectations: a 1:05 swim, 5:14 bike—then a 4:25 marathon that showcased his cause. When spectators were told the reason for the flag, the response was unanimous in its praise. “That’s awesome,” said Reid. “He was on 9:40 pace at the start of the run, and the wind on that flag made it a struggle, but he dug in. I was really proud to be a part of his journey.” To make a donation to the Semper Fi Fund, visit semperfifund.org. —Jay Prasuhn

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AT THE RACES

Reed and Dillon set records at St. Anthony’s A close-second Haskins adds to the record-breaking day By Rebecca Roozen

T

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Anthony’s Triathlon. Great Britain’s Michelle Dillon and American Matt Reed took home golds. The 24th annual St. Anthony’s Triathlon introduced several changes to this year’s event, including a new male and female elite amateur division that allowed amateur athletes who

Robert Murphy

he second-largest United States triathlon event kicked off Saturday, April 28, with the Meek & Mighty Triathlon for kids between ages 7-14. The following morning, the age groupers and stacked pro field duked it out in St. Petersburg, Fla., at the Olympic distance St.

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meet certain qualifications to compete against each other in the same wave. Top finishers received $10,000 in prizes. And it was another milestone year with a record number of more than 4,000 amateur and professional athletes from 46 states and 15 countries. The first wave of the Olympic-distance race began when the professional male competitors entered the calm 77degree waters of the Tampa Bay at 7 a.m. Included in the men’s field were world-class athletes like Hunter Kemper, Andy Potts, Chris McCormack and Craig Alexander.

After a third-place finish in the 2006 St. Anthony’s Triathlon, Reed, of Boulder, Colo., maintained his lead in this year’s race to finish first in 1:46:10—breaking the previous record set by Rasmus Henning of Denmark (1:46:14) in 2006. “This is a nice way to come back,” said Reed, 32, a New Zealand native. “I planned to ride hard, have a big lead and hold it. The course was fast all the way around. Once in front, it was out-ofsight, out-of-mind.” Australians Greg Bennett, 35, and Craig Alexander, 34, rounded out the top three for the professional male podium spots. Bennett finished in 1:46:30 and Alexander in 1:48:07. Bennett was the 2005 St. Anthony’s pro male winner. The women’s field included leading ladies Becky Lavelle, Sam McGlone and Sarah Haskins, to name a few. Michelle Dillon and Sarah Haskins both broke a 14-year record set by Donna Peters (1:59:00) with 1:57:45 and 1:57:49 finishes, respectively. Surprised by her record win, Dillon, 34, said it was a difficult race. “I was 40

Robert Murphy

AT THE RACES

seconds down on my run. It was a matter of pushing myself.” Twenty-six-year-old Haskins also finished second in last year’s race. “I had a big lead, but I’m happy with second place and my bike and swim.” Julie Dibens rounded out the women’s podium in third.

ST. ANTHONY’S TRIATHLON

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Women 1. Michelle Dillon (GBR) 2. Sarah Haskins (USA) 3. Julie Dibens (GBR) 4. Mirinda Carfrae (AUS) 5. Samantha McGlone (CAN)

1:57:45 1:57:49 1:59:06 2:00:18 2:00:26

Men 1. Matt Reed (USA) 2. Greg Bennett (AUS) 3. Craig Alexander (AUS) 4. Chris McCormack (AUS) 5. Brian Fleischmann (USA)

1:46:10 1:46:30 1:48:07 1:48:51 1:49:28

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Robert Murphy

St. Petersburg, Fla. April 29, 2007 1.5km swim, 40km bike, 10km run


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Kiwis dominate XTERRA New Zealand ew Zealand’s Tim Wilding, a 23-year-old legal graduate, pulled off the first big upset of the XTERRA Global Tour this season by surprising reigning XTERRA USA Champion Seth Wealing at the New Zealand championship in Rotorua, on New Zealand’s North Island, April 14. On the women’s side, another Kiwi star, Gina Ferguson, won the race for the second year in a row. Despite a cool, drizzling start, more than 400 athletes thundered into Blue Lake, just outside Rotorua. With a quick swim, Wealing led the field out of the water and onto the 33.5km bike course, but Wilding, and Kiwi John Hume, were not far behind “The last thing I needed was for Tim to have a good swim,” said Hume

Courtesy XTERRA New Zealand

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T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M


Courtesy XTERRA New Zealand

AT THE RACES

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

afterward. “He’s just come off a solid mountain bike–racing season, and I knew he’d be tough to catch.” Hume’s prophecy proved true, and Wilding’s cause was aided by Wealing’s wrong turn on the bike, which left the American off-road star 10 minutes off the pace. Still, after recovering from his error, Wealing bore down on the leaders and hit T2 in eighth place before attacking the run course in a futile bid to recover the lead. In fact, Wilding held off all challengers to take his first XTERRA NZ title, while Hume took second and Wealing, despite a strong run, was only able to recover to fourth place. In the women’s race, New Zealand’s Gina Ferguson posted a blistering run split to overtake her competition for the win. Fellow Kiwi Nina Trass came off

the bike first but struggled on the run and ultimately faded to fifth place. Veteran Catherine Dunn, who raced strong the whole way, dropped to third as she was overtaken by both Ferguson and former Kiwi champ Sonia Foote Hill, who came second.

XTERRA NEW ZEALAND Rotorua, New Zealand April 14, 2007 1km swim, 33.5km mountain bike, 11km run Women 1. Gina Ferguson (NZ) 2. Sonia Hill (NZ) 3. Catherine Dunn (NZ) 4. Eloise Fry (NZ) 5. Nina Trass (NZ)

2:48:24 2:54:03 2:55:01 2:56:37 2:57:28

Men 1. Tim Wilding (NZ) 2. Jon Hume (NZ) 3. Mark Leishman (NZ) 4. Seth Wealing (USA) 5. Gordon Walker (NZ)

2:22:19 2:23:37 2:25:01 2:28:11 2:28:46

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ustralia’s Craig Alexander and the UK’s Julie Dibens topped strong fields to win the St. Croix Ironman 70.3 triathlon, in the U.S. Virgin Islands, on May 6. Alexander, the defending Ironman 70.3 world champion, has owned this race in St. Croix for the past three years, and he toppled fellow Aussies Richie Cunningham and 2006 Hawaii Ironman runner-up Chris McCormack to hang on to the 2007 St. Croix title. Dibens, who finished fourth here in 2003, used a strong swim-bike

A

combination to take the win from Britain’s Catriona Morrison, who ran into second place with a 1:26:24 halfmarathon, and Sam McGlone, Canada’s 70.3 star and 2004 Olympian who this year has set her sights on Kona. With 28 Hawaii Ironman slots up for grabs at St. Croix this year, top athletes from around the world traveled to Christiansted, St. Croix, to tackle this punishing course, which is without equal on the 70.3 circuit. Following swim leader Frederik Van Lierde, from Belgium, out of Christiansted Harbour, the men’s field headed out onto the 56-mile bike with the race favorites within seconds of each other. And despite the powerful winds that sweep across the exposed eastern tip of the island, along with the exhausting heat and humidity that can rival even the punishing Kona conditions, the trio of McCormack, Alexander and Cunningham surged up the Beast, a 14-percent climb that rises 600 feet in less than a mile, together and hit T2 just seconds apart. But once on the run, Alexander quickly began to open a gap on the two-loop course to out-split runner-up Cunningham by over four minutes in a stunning display of leg speed and power over this challenging course.

DIBENS TAKES AN EARLY LEAD In the women’s race, Dibens grabbed an early advantage by taking a nearly three-minute lead over

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Courtesy ASI Photo

By Cameron Elford

ST. CROIX IRONMAN 70.3 Christiansted, St. Croix, USVI May 6, 2007 1.2-mile swim, 56-mile bike, 13.1-mile run Women 1. Julie Dibens (GBR) 2. Catriona Morrison (GBR) 3. Sam McGlone (CAN) 4. Abi Bailey (GBR) 5. Desiree Ficker (USA)

4:29:11 4:33:09 4:39:52 4:45:30 4:46:43

Men 1. Craig Alexander (AUS) 2. Richie Cunningham (AUS) 3. Chris McCormack (AUS) 4. Marcus Ornellas (BRA) 5. Frederik Van Lierde (BEL)

4:04:52 4:08:56 4:09:51 4:10:00 4:11:14

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

Courtesy ASI Photo

Alexander, Dibens win St. Croix

Ironman star Wendy Ingraham out of the swim, with Morrison and McGlone within seconds of Ingraham as they headed into T1. But Dibens was far from done as she padded her advantage on the bike with a 2:33:53, out-splitting Morrison by nearly five minutes. And on the run, despite a powerful surge from Morrison in the form of a race-best half-marathon that was nearly four minutes faster than either Dibens or McGlone, none of the trailing women could overcome their deficit to the leader, and Dibens took the 2007 St. Croix title in 4:29:11. 2006 Hawaii Ironman runner-up Desiree Ficker finished in fifth place, over 17 minutes off Dibens’ pace, while the great Karen Smyers, the 1995 Ironman world champion, took sixth place in 4:52:36.

Courtesy ASI Photo

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Rosheen Oliver

Stoltz shakes up DUESOUTH XTERRA South African Championships

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closest competitor, Dan Hugo. Stoltz capped his performance with a strong run to win comfortably in 2:44:27, with Hugo second and South Africa’s Kent Horner third. “I was really surprised to catch up with the lead athletes so quickly,” said Stoltz. “I started off rather conservatively, as I knew that it was a long course that would involve a lot of pedaling. The run was hard with a lot of climbing, but I knew I had quite a good lead and just paced myself. I am really happy with my performance and feel confident about my upcoming racing season.”

DUESOUTH XTERRA SOUTH AFRICA Grabouw, South Africa April 14, 2007 1.5km swim, 30km bike, 12km run Women 1. Michelle Lombardi (RSA) 2. Hanlie Booyens (RSA) 3. Ezter Erdelyi (HUN) 4. Carla Germishuys (RSA) 5. Jeannie Bomford (RSA)

3:19:29 3:25:32 3:27:51 3:31:36 3:46:27

Men 1. Conrad Stoltz (RSA) 2. Dan Hugo (RSA) 3. Kent Horner (RSA) 4. Iain Don-Wauchope (RSA) 5. Roan Exelby (RSA)

2:44:27 2:54:22 2:56:10 3:00:07 3:04:00

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

Jurie Senekai

wo-time XTERRA world champion Conrad Stoltz, racing on his home turf, obliterated the field at the DUESOUTH XTERRA South Africa Championships, presented by Nissan, on April 14. The race took place at the Grabouw Country Club, near Cape Town in the Western Cape region, and featured a 1.5km swim, 30km bike and 12km run. Although Stoltz wasn’t first out of the water, he got off to a blistering start on the bike and overhauled the race leaders just out of T1. Stoltz managed to build on this lead, and by the time he hit T2 he was 10 minutes in front of his

South Africa’s Michelle Lombardi took the honors among the women’s field. Battling back from a deficit out of the swim, Lombardi attacked the bike and overhauled Hungary’s Eszter Erdélyi to take the lead just before T2. Lombardi then charged through the run to take the win in 3:19:29, with South Africa’s Hanlie Booyens in second and Erdélyi third. “I was really happy with my swim . . . I felt relaxed and enjoyed it for a change,” said Lombardi. “The mountain-bike leg was physically taxing, but not that technical. I actually wouldn’t have minded if it was more technical as it suits my riding style better and would have allowed me to build on my lead.” Among the men, the top-three age groupers were Richard Murray, Martin Wesemann and Stephen Rabe, while the top three age-group women were Karin Winterbach, Marilyn Chivers and Emmeri Serdyn.

Jurie Senekai

LOMBARDI TOPS WOMEN’S FIELD


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Thompson, Cave take inaugural 101 honors By Jay Prasuhn ollowing the ITU’s decision to trim the distance of its longcourse world championship, a set of U.S.-based race organizers decided that there existed a chasm between the Ironman and 70.3 distances that deserved a series. So they filled the void with a number: 101. As in the total distance for a 1.8-mile swim, an 80.6-mile bike and 18.6-mile run. The Triathlon 101 series was born with three 2007 races (Bradenton, Fla.; Clearlake, Calif.; and Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada) plus a championship finale to be held in The Woodlands, Texas, in November.

F

At the first event of this series on May 6 in Bradenton, Florida, David Thompson of St. Paul, Minn., and Great Britain’s Leanda Cave took the titles. While it was a light 140athlete field, the 101 debut did draw a strong pro field, pulled in by a sizable $50,000 prize purse and a $10,000 first-place prize each for the men and women. The men’s race saw Belgian Marino Vanhoenacker (sixth at the Hawaii Ironman last year) and Sweden’s Jonas Colting as the big guns coming in, while the women were deep with Scot Bella Comerford, Brit Leanda

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Jason Budd asiphoto.com

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T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

Vapour moisture TRANSFER FABRIC REAR POCKETS aquaglide water resistant fabric flatlock stitching vapour moisture transfer panel safety reflective silicone leg gripper

CRAIG ALEXANDER WORLD 70.3 IRONMAN CHAMPION

Kraft and American Karen Cave and Germany’s Nina Holloway. Holloway manKraft making a return from aged to shake Kraft late in her 2004 Hawaii Ironman the bike and started the run dethroning and suspension. 2:50 off the lead. As was the The non-wetsuit swim case in the men’s race, Cave saw women lead the field would go unfettered through out of the Manatee River: the three-lap run. Kraft Former University of would re-assume second Florida swimmer Ashley from Holloway but was Carusone exited first folunable to close the sevenlowed by Cave then the first minute gap to Cave, as she male, the UK’s Stephen went on to the inaugural Bayliss, out third. women’s crown in 6:23. On the six-lap bike, the Kraft took second, seven race started shaking out as minutes back, as Manhattan Thompson took the lead Beach pro Hillary Biscay from Bayliss at mile 30 then supplanted Holloway for the was joined by Vanhoenacker final podium place. 15 miles later. But Thompson motored the 53 x 12 and TRIATHLON 101 BRADENTON dropped the Belgian Bradenton, Florida to take a healthy 4:10 May 6, 2007 lead onto the run. 1.8-mile swim, 80.6-mile bike, The gap would stick. 18.6-mile run As Vanhoenacker melted in the heat Women and a resurgent 1. Leanda Cave (GBR) 6:23:37 Bayliss took his 2. Nina Kraft (GER) 6:30:39 place, Thompson 3. Hilary Biscay (USA) 6:38:36 pushed on to take his 4. Karen Holloway (USA) 6:42:14 biggest career win in 5. Bella Comerford (SCO) 6:49:49 5:45, with Bayliss crossing second nine Men minutes back. 1. David Thompson (USA) 5:45:41 Among the women, 2. Stephen Bayliss (GBR) 5:54:33 Cave kept a string of 3. Nate Kortuem (USA) 5:56:55 chasers at bay and 4. Paul Ambrose (AUS) 5:59:48 grew her lead over 5. Marino Van Hoenacker (BEL) 6:03:10

For dealer enquires, please email dealer@orca.com or call 1.866.257.6722. For further product information check out www.orca.com


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DIGITAL EDITION

Young guns Elliott, Ellis skirt stingrays, celebrate Cinco de Mayo with wins in Mexico By Jay Prasuhn

NOW AVAILABLE

• Links to all of the Web sites (URLs) and E-mail addresses • Download: Save a local version directly to your computer for off-line viewing • Tools that allow you to zoom, print or e-mail pages to a friend • Find anything in the magazine by typing a search phrase • View all available archived issues for this magazine

T

Jay Prasuhn

Our digital edition is an exact replica of the print edition of Triathlete magazine, delivered to your computer by e-mail. It looks just like the print edition and contains the identical training information, gear reviews, race reporting, news and nutrition tips as the mailed copy. But the digital edition offers several advantages that print doesn’t:

he tiny Mexican fishing community of Puerto Penasco, routinely overrun by pale college kids every spring, was happy to welcome a wave of Americans wielding energy gels in lieu of beers for the Las Palomas Rocky Point Triathlon on May 5. But as much as the Olympic-distance race resembled Kona—taking place 50 miles southwest of Arizona on the northeastern-most point of the Sea of Cortez in hot, windy conditions—it was also so very unlike Kona. For unlike Kona, Rocky Point finishers were greeted not by the Kokua Crew but with an ice cold Tecate. “I’ve never done a race this laid back before,” Scottsdale-based pro-race winner Lewis Elliot said. “There’re zero Type-A people here, and if there are Type-A people here, they’re that way about partying.” Women’s overall winner Katie Ellis agreed. “This is more of a party race,” the Arizona State University senior said with a smile. “Coming down here, I wasn’t like, ‘I want to win this race.’ It was more like, ‘I got my finals out of the way early so I could have fun here and have a little vacation.’” For many in the Southwest states, the Rocky Point triathlon is a rite of passage, marking the unofficial opening of the

regional season. For Elliot, it was evidence of his continued rise in the sport. His 1:53:36 winning performance in Mexico mirrored his strong third-place finish at Ford Ironman California 70.3 in March and his seventh at Ironman Arizona. The women’s race was a nail biter as runner-up finisher at the USAT Collegiate National Championships Ellis outkicked pro Heather Haviland in the final 100 yards in a deep-sand beach finish to win by just six seconds, in 2:04:08.

• Environmental friendly: No trees are cut and no fuel is wasted to deliver this edition

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DIGITAL EDITION Jay Prasuhn

TODAY triathlete-digital.com T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M


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TACKLING THE OBSTACLES While heat and wind were the obvious obstacles for athletes, the warm waters brought a more acute challenge—a minefield of stingrays littering the shoreline. Five athletes were tagged by the palm-sized fish after stomping through the shallows instead of doing the stingray shuffle. Once past the stingray gauntlet, the biggest adversary for athletes was a stiff wind out of the west that made for hard work on the flat but exposed three-lap bike through the sandy, barren Pinacate desert. Out of the water second, Elliott raced to the lead in the first two miles of the bike. From there he pushed hard through the winding sections past a growing strip

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lead, “but Heather was creeping, creeping, creeping up on me,” she said of Haviland, a Wisconsinbased pro. And late in the bike, Haviland assumed a slim lead. Off the bike together, Ellis and Haviland ran sideby-side for much of the 10km run. “If we did surge on each other, it was minimal,” Ellis said. “We felt like it was gonna come down to the finish anyway.” The last turn off pavement and onto the deep sand was indeed the deciding factor, and Ellis pushed to separate herself. “She just had that short-course extra gear,” Haviland said. “It was fun racing side-byside all day and to have it come down to the last few yards.” INVISIBLE ZIP flatlock stitching MICRO-FLEECE CHAMOIS

of hotels toward La Choya to build a four-minute lead off the bike. The man in pursuit, Phoenix resident Patrick Bless, knew his fate. “I’ve raced Lewis a few times. I knew he wasn’t coming back,” he said frankly. Lewis cruised the 10km run for the win, as Bless crossed second just over three minutes back, with New Mexico age grouper Mike Montoya taking third. The women’s battle was a much tighter affair. Ellis grabbed the early T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

DEBBIE TANNER ITU WORLD CUP WINNER

Jay Prasuhn

CRAIG ALEXANDER WORLD 70.3 IRONMAN CHAMPION

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2007 LAS PALOMAS ROCKY POINT TRIATHLON Puerto Penasco, Sonora, Mexico May 5, 2007 1.5km swim, 40km bike, 10km run Women 1. Katie Ellis (USA) 2. Heather Haviland (USA) 3. Luisa Bryce (USA) 4. Sage Grossi (USA) 5. Shannon Driscoll (USA)

2:04:08 2:04:15 2:09:49 2:22:49 2:25:41

Men 1. Lewis Elliot (USA) 2. Patrick Bless (USA) 3. Mike Montoya (USA) 4. Alex Manessis (USA) 5. Mike Melley (USA)

1:53:36 1:56:43 2:00:58 2:01:55 2:02:25 For dealer enquires, please email dealer@orca.com or call 1.866.257.6722. For further product information check out www.orca.com


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CALENDAR

International Triathlon & Duathlon Race Calendar

Rich Cruse

Triathlete endeavors to present the most comprehensive calendar of tris and dus. However, because event dates are subject to change, please check with race directors to confirm event information before making plans. See Multi-Event Contacts for contact information for promoters that have multiple listings. Listings printed in red indicate Triathlete-sponsored races. USA Triathlon- sanctioned races are designated with a #. Register at active.com for events designated with @. RACE DIRECTORS: For online race listings, please go to triathletemag.com and post your races under our Calendar link. Allow one week for your events to become live. For listing in our print calendar, e-mail your information to rebecca@triathlete mag.com or fax it to (760) 634-4110. Entries submitted before April 30 have been included in the July issue. All entries that were submitted after that date will be in the August issue. Please note that most XTERRA global tour events consist of approximately a 1.5K swim, 30K mountain bike and 10K trail run.

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CALENDAR

2007 XTERRA TV SCHEDULE (June 23 through July 15) MOUNTAIN PACIFIC #07/07- June Lake, CA—June Lake Triathlon. 1.5K S, 41K B, 10K R; .25mi S, 8.2mi B, 2mi R. 07/14- Magic Reservoir, ID—East vs West Triathlon Challenge. PB-Performance. 800m S, 13mi, 5K R; 1600m S, 26mi B, 10K R. 07/22- Boulder, CO—Boulder Peak Triathlon. 5430 Sports. 1.5K S, 42K B, 10K R. 07/29- San Diego, CA—Solana Beach Triathlon. Koz Enterprises. .25mi S, 9mi B, 3mi R; 1mi R, 9mi B, 3mi R. #08/05- San Francisco, CA—Alcatraz Challenge Aquathlon & Swim. 1.5mi S, 7mi R. #08/11-Emmett, ID—Emmett’s Most Excellent Triathlon and Sprint Triathlon. 1.5K S, 40K B, 10K R; .5K S, 20K B, 5K R. 08/11- Boulder, CO—Boulder Kids Triathlon. 5430 Sports. Distances vary by age. 08/11- Telluride, CO—TelluTri Mountain High Challenge. .75mi S, 43mi B, 5mi R. 08/12- Folsom, CA—Folsom International Triathlon. Firstwave Events. 1.5K S, 40K B, 10K R. 08/12- Boulder, CO—5430 Long Course Triathlon. 5430 Sports. 1.2mi S, 56mi B, 13.1mi R. 08/12- Honolulu, HI—Ironman Revisited. 2.4mi S, 112mi B, 26.2mi R.

Market

Station

Date

Time

Show

Tri Cities, Tenn.

WCYB

6/23

2 p.m.

XTERRA Planet No. 3

Waco, Texas

KWTX

6/23

12:30 p.m.

XTERRA Planet No. 4

Rapid City, S.D.

KEVN

6/24

1 p.m.

XTERRA Planet No. 1

Rapid City, S.D.

KEVN

6/24

1:30 p.m.

XTERRA Saipan

Omaha, Neb.

KETV

6/24

3:30 p.m.

XTERRA Planet No. 3

Waco, Texas

KWTX

6/24

noon

XTERRA Planet No. 3

Rapid City, S.D.

KEVN

6/24

2 p.m.

XTERRA Planet No. 3

Rapid City, S.D.

KEVN

6/24

2:30 p.m.

XTERRA Planet No. 4

Atlanta, Ga.

WXIA

6/30

1:30 p.m.

XTERRA USA Championship

Chicago, Ill.

WBBM

6/30

1 p.m.

XTERRA Planet No. 3

Tri Cities, Tenn.

WCYB

6/30

2 p.m.

XTERRA Planet No. 4

Great Falls, Mont.

KFBB

6/30

noon

XTERRA Planet No. 4

Helena, Mont.

KHBB

6/30

noon

XTERRA Planet No. 4

Tri Cities, Tenn.

WCYB

7/8

2:30 p.m.

XTERRA Planet No. 5

Tri Cities, Tenn.

WCYB

7/15

2:30 p.m.

XTERRA Maui Highlights

Check your local listings to see an updated broadcast schedule for the award-winning TEAM Unlimited Television productions. For more information on the shows and a complete list of broadcast dates and times visit xterraplanet.com/television.

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CALENDAR

Rich Cruse

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08/25- Santa Barbara, CA—Santa Barbara Long Course Triathlon. 1mi S, 34mi B, 10mi R. 08/26- Santa Barbara, CA—Santa BarbaraCo-Ed Sprint Triathlon. 500yd S, 6mi B, 2mi R. 08/26- Santa Barbara, CA—Santa Barbara Women-Only Sprint Triathlon. 500yd S, 6mi B, 2mi R. 08/26- San Diego, CA—Imperial Beach Triathlon. Koz Enterprises. .25mi S, 9mi B, 3mi R; 1mi R, 9mi B, 3mi R. 08/26- Steamboat Springs, CO—Steamboat Springs Triathlon. 5430 Sports. .75mi S, 20mi B, 4mi R. 09/01- Auburn, CA—Lake of the Pines Triathlon. Three sprint-level races. 09/08- Idaho Falls, ID—Blacktail Triathlon. PB-Performance. 800m S, 13mi, 5K R; 1600m S, 26mi B, 10K R. 09/08-9- Pacific Grove, CA—Triathlon at Pacific Grove. Tri-California. 1.5K S, 40K B, 10K R; .25mi S, 12.4mi B, 2mi R. 09/09- Glenwood Springs, CO—23rd Annual Tri-Glenwood Triathlon. 825m S, 15mi B, 5mi R. 09/09- Santa Cruz, CA—Big Kahuna Triathlon Long Course. Firstwave Events. 1.2mi S, 56mi B, 13.1mi R. 09/23- Tempe, AZ—Timex Triathlon. Red Rock Company, Inc. 1500m S, 24mi B, 10K R; 750m S, 12mi B, 3.1mi R.

09/28-30- San Luis Obispo, CA—Scott Tinley Adventure Races. Tri-California. bike hill climbs, road and off-road triathlons. 09/30- San Diego, CA—Mission Bay Triathlon. Koz Enterprises. 500m S, 15K B, 5K R. 10/28- San Diego, CA—San Diego Triathlon Challenge. 1.2mi S, 56mi B, 13.1mi R. 10/28- Tempe, AZ—Soma Half Ironman. Red Rock Company, Inc. 1.2mi S, 56mi B, 13.1mi R. 11/09-11- San Francisco, CA—Treasure Island Triathlon. Tri-California. 1.5K S, 40K B, 10K R; .5K S, 20K B, 5K R.

SOUTH ATLANTIC #08/11- Guntersville, AL—Mountain Lakes Triathlon. Team Magic.600yd S, 16.2mi B, 3mi R. 09/23- Miami, FL—Escape to Miami Triathlon. PR Racing, Inc. 1.1K S, 40K B, 10K R.

NORTH ATLANTIC 07/01- Buffalo, NY—A Tri in the Buff. Score This!!!, Inc. 1.5K S, 40K B, 10K R; 750m S, 20K B, 5K R; 5K R, 20K B, 5K R; 200m S, 10K B, 2K R. 07/11- Middlebury, CT—21st Annual Pat Griskus Sprint

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Triathlon. .5mi S, 10.5mi B, 3.1mi R. 07/15- Cape Cod, MA—13th Falmouth Sprint Triathlon. 1/3mi S, 9mi B, 3.1mi R. 07/15- Salisbury, VT—Vermont Sun Triathlon. 600yd S, 14mi B, 3.1mi R. 07/22- Town of Ulster, NY—11th Annual Hudson Valley Tri/Biathlon. New York Triathlon. .3mi S, 16mi B, 3mi R; 1mi R, 16mi B, 3mi R. #08/05- Trumansburg, NY—Cayuga Lake Triathlon. 1.5K S, 40K B, 10K R; 750m S, 14mi B, 5K R; 200m S, 9mi B, 1.5mi R (youth only). 08/11- Grand Island, NY—Summer Sizzler. Score This!!!, Inc. 400m S, 17K B, 4.4K R; 4.4K R, 17K B, 4.4K R. 08/12- Salisbury, VT—Lake Dunmore Triathlon. .9mi S, 28mi B, 6.2mi R. 08/12- Central Park, NY—20th Annual Central Park Triathlon. New York Triathlon. .25mi S, 12mi B, 3mi R. 08/19- Harriman State Park, NY—22nd Annual NY Tri/Biathlon Series #2. New York Triathlon. .5mi S, 16mi B, 3mi R; 3mi R, 16mi B, 3mi R. 08/18-19- Gilford, NH—The Timberman Triathlon Festival. 1.2mi S, 56mi B, 13.1mi R; .3mi S, 15mi B, 3mi R. 09/02- Lake George, NY—Lake George Triathlon. 1.5K S, 40K B, 10K R. adktri.org/lakegeorgetri.html. 09/08- Cape Cod, MA—1/4mi S, 10mi B, 3.5mi R. 09/09- Salisbury, VT—Half Vermont Journey. 1.2mi S, 56mi B, 13.1mi R. 09/09- Barker, NY—Danforth Fall Frolic. Score This!!!, Inc. 400m S, 20K B, 5K R; 1.6K R, 20K B, 5K R. #09/09- Lake Lure, NC—Hickory Nut Gorge Triathlon. Race Day Events. 400m S, 25K B, 5K R. 09/29- Darien, CT—Itpman Triathlon. New York Triathlon. 1.5K S, 25K B, 10K R. 09/23- Canandaigua, NY—Finger Lakes Triathlon. Score This!!!, Inc. 1.5K S, 40K B, 10K R; 750m S, 21K B, 5K R.

NORTH CENTRAL 07/08- Grand Haven, MI—Grand Haven Half Tri, Du, Sprint. 3 Disciplines Racing. 1.5K S, 40K B, 10K R; 500m S, 20K B, 5K R; 5K R, 20K B, 5K R. 07/09- Neoga, IL—Mattoon Beach Triathlons. Mattoon Beach Tri. .25mi S, 12mi B, 3.1mi R; .5mi S, 24mi B, 6.2mi R. 07/14- Holly recreation, MI—Holly Xtri. 3 Disciplines Racing. 1000m S, TBA mt. B, 4mi R; 2mi R, TBA mt. B, 4mi R. #07/14- Danville, IA—Lake Geode Challenge. 1.5K S, 40K B, 10K R. 07/15- Interlochen, MI—Interlochen

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Music Fest Tri, Du, Sprint. 3 Disciplines Racing. 1.5K S, 40K B, 10K R; 500m S, 20K B, 5K R; 5K R, 20K B, 5K R. 07/22- Milford, MI—YMCA Happy Trails Triathhlon. 3 Disciplines Racing. .6mi S, 16mi B, 5K R. 07/28- Iona State Park, MI—Ionia Xtri. 3 Disciplines Racing. 1000m S, TBA mt. B, 4mi R; 2mi R, TBA mt. B, 4mi R. 07/29- Mackinaw City, MI—Mackinaw Multi-Sport Mix. 3 Disciplines Racing. 800m S, 30K B, 5K R; 1.5mi R, 30K B, 5K R. 08/04- Neoga, IL—Mattoonman 1/3 Iron Distance. Mattoon Beach Tri. .8mi S, 38mi B, 8.6mi R. 08/04- Gaylord, MI—27th Mark Mellon Triathlon. 3 Disciplines Racing. TBA. 08/05- Clarkston, MI—Craig Greenfield Memorial Tri. 3 Disciplines Racing. 800m S, 16mi B, 5K R. 08/11- Fort Custer State Park, MI—Xtri Battle Creek. 3 Disciplines Racing. 1000m S, TBA mt. B, 4mi R; 2mi R, TBA mt. B, 4mi R. 08/11-12- Mentor, OH—Greater Cleveland Triathlon. 1.2mi S, 56mi B, 13.1mi R; 1.2mi S, 56mi B; .75mi S, 23mi B, 6.2mi R; .5mi S, 12mi B, 3.1mi R. 08/12- Lansing, MI—Lansing Legislator Tri. 3 Disciplines Racing. 1.2mi S, 56mi B, 13.1mi R; duathlon TBA. 08/18- Sanford, MI—Sanford & Sun Triathlon. 3 Disciplines Racing. 1000m S, 30K B, 5mi R; 500m S, 20K B, 5K R. 08/19- Petoskey, MI—Petoskey Tri. Du. Sprint. 3 Disciplines Racing. 1000m S, 30K B, 5mi R; 2mi R, 30K B, 5mi R. 08/26- Ludington, MI—Ludington Tri, Du, Sprint. 3 Disciplines Racing. 1000m S, 40K B, 10K R; 500m S, 20K B, 5K R; 5K R, 20K B, 5K R. 09/01- Kalamazoo, MI—Prairie View Tri. Du Sprint. 3 Disciplines Racing. 1000m S, 40K B, 10K R; 500m S, 20K B, 5K R; 5K R, 20K B, 5K R. 09/01- Boyne Mtn., MI—Boyne Mtn. Triathlon. 3 Disciplines Racing. TBA. 09/02- Boyne, MI—Xtri Championship. 3 Disciplines Racing. 1000m S, TBA mt. B, 4mi R; 2mi R, TBA mt. B, 4mi R. 09/08- Novi, MI—Novi Sprint Triathlon. 3 Disciplines Racing. 800m S, 15mi B, 5K R. 09/15- Neoga, IL—Great Illini Challenge Full Iron Distance and Half Iron Distance. Mattoon Beach Tri. 2.4mi S, 112mi B, 26.2mi R; 1.2mi S, 56mi B, 13.1mi R. 09/16- Shelby Township, MI—Stony Creek Championship. 3 Disciplines Racing. 1.5K S, 40K B, 10K R; 500m S, 20K B, 5K R; 5K R, 20K B, 5K R.

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09/23- Holly, MI—Autumn Colors Triathlon, duathlon. 3 Disciplines Racing. 1000m S, 30K B, 5mi R; 2mi R, 30K B, 5mi R. 10/13- Neoga, IL—Eagle Creek Long Course Duathlon. Mattoon Beach Tri. 5mi R, 40mi B, 5mi R.

SOUTH CENTRAL #07/01- Vonore, TN—Tellico Sprint. TN USAT Sprint Championship. Race Day Events. 800m S, 17mi B, 4mi R. 07/15- Chattanooga, TN—Chattanooga Waterfront Triathlon. Team Magic. 1.5K S, 40K B, 10K R. 07/15- Carrollton, KY—14th Annual Gen. Butler Off-road Triathlon. .4mi S, 3mi R, 10mi B. #07/28- Cleveland, TN—TrYMCA Double Dip Sprint Triathlon. Race Day Events. 200m S, 200m S, 10mi B, 2.5mi R. 07/28- Lebanon, TN—Cedars of Lebanon Triathlon. Team Magic. 300yd S, 16.5mi B, 3mi R. #08/11- Guntersville, AL—Mountain Lakes Triathon. Team Magic. 600yd S, 16.2mi B, 3mi R. #08/11- Alcoa, TN—Springbrook Sprint Triathlon. Race Day Events. 300m S, 10mi B, 2.5mi R. #08/18- Pikeville, TN—Fall Creek Falls Triathlon. Race Day Events. 1.5K S, 40K B, 10K R. 09/08- Hendersonville, TN—Old Hickory Lake Triathlon. Team Magic. 400yd S, 1.5mi R, 13mi B, 1.5mi R. #09/16- Nashville, TN—Music City Triathlon. Team Magic. 1.5K S, 40K B,

10K R. 09/22- Lake Barkly, KY—Lake Barkly Full and Half Iron Distance Triathlon. Head First Performance. 2.4mi S, 112mi B, 26.2mi R; 1.2mi S, 56mi B, 13.1mi R. #09/23- Vonore, TN—Atomic Man Half Iron Triathlon. Race Day Events. 1.2mi S, 56mi B, 13.1mi R. 09/29-30- Austin, TX—The Longhorn Triathlon Festival. 1.2mi S, 56mi B, 13.1mi R; .5mi S, 15mi B, 3.1mi R. 10/07- Houston, TX—Du the Bear Duathlon. Out-loud. 2mi R, 12mi B, 2mi R. #10/14- Lenoir City, TN—Atomic Duathlon. Race Day Events. 5K R, 35K B, 5K R. 10/28- Montgomery, TX—Iron Star Triathlon. Out-loud. 1.2mi S, 59mi B, 13.1mi R. REMINDER: If a race’s contact information is not listed with the event in the preceding section, refer to the Multi-Event Contacts listings below. There, you will find a list of race organizers who put on either multiple races or series events.

For more events and online race registration, please be sure to check out triathletemag.com and active.com. Both sites offer up-to-date racing and training information, as well as the most recent news and coverage of triathlon’s most popular events. To list your event in our online calendar, please go to triathletemag.com.

Rich Cruse

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MULTI-EVENT CONTACTS 3 Discliplines Racing: www.3disciplines.com; 866.820.6036 5430 Sports: Barry Siff, 1507 North St., Boulder, CO, barry@5430sports.com, www.5430sports.com; 303.442.0041. AA Sports: 503.644.6822; www.racecenter.com; events@ racecenter.com. Blue Sky Sports, LLC: 678.237.0308; director@ tribluesky.com; www.tribluesky.com. Bradventures LLC. Producer of Auburn International Triathlon. www.auburntriathlon.com; 530-888-9911; info@bradventures.com. By the Beach Productions: 5153 Soquel Dr., Soquel, CA, 831.465.6517; www.bythebeachproductions.com; info@ bythebeachproductions.com. Capri Events: 773.404.2372; www.caprievents. com. CFT Sommer Sports: 838 W. DeSoto St., P.O. Box 121236, Clermont, FL 34712; 352.394.1320 (p); 352.394.1702 (f); info@triflorida.com; http://greatfloridian.com. CGI Racing: 856-308-7522; www.cgiracing.com. Cutting Edge Events: 217.347.3739; www.cu tingedge events.net, beccakoester@yahoo.com, www.sign meup.com. Danskin Womenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Triathlon Series: 800.452.9526, www.danskin.com, triathlon@ danskin.com. Elite Endeavors: Jim & Joyce Donaldson, 8963 Stoneybrook Blvd., Sylvania, OH 43560; 419.829.2398, jdjp@sev.org. Emerald Coast Events Commission: 850.784.9542; www.emeraldcoasstevents.com; jlynch@knology.net. EndorFUN Sports: 603.293.8353, 512.535.5224; www.endorfunsports.com, keith@timbermantri.com. Envirosports: P.O. Box 1040, Stinson Beach, CA 94970, 415.868.1829 (p), 415.868.2611 (f), info@envirosports. com, www.envirosports.com. Event Power: 22 Jagger Ln., Southampton, NY 11968; 631.283.7400; eventpower@aol.com; www.swimpower. com. Exclusive Sports Marketing & Nestle Sprintkids Series: 1060 Holland Dr., Ste. 3-L, Boca Raton, FL 33487; 561.241.3801; 888.ESMSPORTS (376-7767);tjcesarz@ exclusivesports. com; www.fam ilyfitnessweekend.com. Fat Rabbit Racing: Craig Thompson, 614.424.7990, 614.306.1996; craigthompson@fatrabbitracing.com; www.fatrabbitracing.com. FIRM Racing: 66 Bruce Rd., Marlboro, MA 01732; P: (508) 4855855, F: (508) 229-8394; bill@firm-racing.com, www.firm-racing.com. Firstwave Events: P.O. Box 321269, Los Gatos, CA 95032; P: 408.356.0518; F: 408.356.0534; www.firstwave-events.com.. Georgia Multisport Productions: Jim Rainey, 4180 Liberty Trace, Marietta, GA 30066; 770.926.6993, 770. 928. 9292 (F); jim@gamultisports.com, www.gamultisports.com. Great Smokey Mountains Triathlon Club: www.gsmtc.com; tri2000@dnet.net. Greater Knoxville Triathlon Club: Kevin Mahan, 205 Cross Creek Private Ln., Lenoir City, TN 37771, 865.675.BIKE (2453) (p), 865.988.9250 (f), www.knoxtri.org; kevinmahan@char tertn.net. Green Brook Racing LLC: Joe Patanella, P.O. Box 825, Green Brook, NJ 08812-825, 732.841.2558; greenbrookracing@ aol.com, www.greenbrookracing.com. HFP Racing: P.O. Box 375, Thornville, OH 43076; shannon@hfpracing.com, 740.743.2418;

scott@ hfpracing.com, 440. 350.1708; www.hfpracing.com Ironhead Race Productions: Jack Weiss, P.O. Box 1113, Euless, TX 76039-1113; 817.355.1279; ironjack@ironheadrp.com; www.ironheadrp.com. HMA Promotions: 216.752.5151; www.hmapromotions.net Ironman North America: 4999 Pearl East Circle Suite 301, Boulder, CO, 80301; 518.523.2665; 518.523.7542; imanusa@capital. net. J&A Productions: www.japroductions.com; info@japroduc tions.com. JMS Racing Services: P.O. Box 582, Marion, IN 52302, 319.373.0741; www.pigmantri.com/ jmsracing.html; jim@ pigmantri.com; john@pig mantri.com. KOZ Enterprises: San Diego Triathlon Series. P.O. Box 421052, San Diego, CA 92142; 858.268.1250; www.kozenter prises.com; info@ kozenterprises.com. Lake Geneva Extreme Sports: P.O. Box 1134, Lake Geneva, WI 53147, www.lakegenevasports.com; lgsports@lake genevasports.com; 262.275.3577. Lakeshore Athletic Services: 847.673.4100, lakeshoreinfo@aol.com. MESP, Inc. Racing Series: 29395 Agoura Rd., Ste. 102, Agoura Hills, CA 91301; 818.707.8867 (p); 818.707.8868 (f); www. mesp.com. Mountain Man Events: P.O. Box 255, Flagstaff, AZ 86002; www.mountainmanevents.com; admin@mountainmanevents.com. New York Triathlon: P.O. Box 50, Saugerties, NY 124770050; 845.247.0271; www.nytc.org. North Coast Multisports, Inc: P.O. Box 2512, Stow, Ohio 44224; 216-272-0064; mrzymek@aol.com. On Your Mark Events: 209.795.7832; info@onyourmarkevents.com;www.onyourmark events.com. Pacific Sports, LLC: 1500 S. Sunkist St., Ste. E, Anaheim, CA 92806; 714.978.1528 (p); 714.978.1505 (f); www.pacificsportsllc.com. Palmetto Race & Event Production: P.O. Box 1634, Bluffton, SC 29910; 843.815.5267 (p); 843.785.2734 (f); andy5267@ aol.com; www.palmettorace.com. Personal Best Performance, Michael Hays, 808 Saturn Ave., Idaho Falls, ID, 83402-2658. 208.521.2243; Michael@PB-Performance.com. PCH Sports: www.pchsports.com; 2079 Cambridge Ave., Cardiff by the Sea, CA 92007; 760.944.7261. Piranha Sports, LLC/ Greater Atlantic Multisport Series/Greater Atlantic Club Challenge/Escape from School Youth Triahtlon Series: Neil Semmel, P.O. Box 150, Kirkwood, DE 19708; nsemmel@piranha-sports.com; www.piranha-sports.com. PR Racing, Inc., P.O. Box 56-1081, Miami, FL, 33256; 305.278.8668. trimiami.com, trimiami@gmail.com. Premier Event Management: P.O. Box 8764, Metairie, La. 70011. 504.454.6561. www.pem-usa.com. Race Day Events: P.O. Box 31333, Knoxville, TN 37930; 865.250.5948; www.racedayevents.net; Kevin@racedayevents.net Score This!!!, Inc.: 15 Ranch Trail Ct., Orchard Park, NY 14127; 716.662.9379; www.score-this.com; info@score-this.com. Set-Up, Inc.: P.O. Box 15144, Wilmington, NC 28408; 910.458.0299; set-upinc.com; billscott@set-upinc. com.

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Shelburne Athletic Club: 802.985.2229; www.shelburneathletic.com. TBF Racing: Bill Driskell, 5209 Blaze Ct., Rocklin, CA 95677; 916.202.3006; bill@totalbodyfitness.com; tbfracing.com. Team Magic, Inc.: Therese Bynum, Faye Yates; 205.595.8633; www.team-magic.com; races@ team-magic.com. Team Unlimited: XTERRA Series; 877.751.8880; www.xterraplanet.com; info@xterraplanet.com. Time Out! Productions: Rich Havens, P.O. Box 543, Forestdale, MA 02644; 508.477.6311 (p); 508.477.6334 (f); timeout@ capecod.net; www.timeoutproductions.com. TriAthlantic Association: 410.593.9662; www.triath.com. Triathlon Canada: 1185 Eglington Ave., East Suite 704, Toronto, Ontario M3C 3C6; www.triathloncanada.com; 416.426. 7430

Tri-California Events, Inc. Terry Davis, 1284 Adobe Ln., Pacific Grove, CA 93950; 831.373.0678, www.tricalifornia.com. Tuxedo Brothers Event Management: Don Carr, 317.733.3300; tuxbro@indy.rr.com; www.tuxbro.com. UltraFit/USA: P.O. Box 06358, Columbus OH 43206, 614.481.9077, www.ultrafit-usa.com. Updog Sports LLC. www.updogsports.com, info@updogsports.com. Vermont Sun Sport & Fitness: 812 Exchange St., Middlebury, VT 05753; 802.388.6888; www.vermontsun.com/ triathlon. html, vtsun@together.net. YellowJacket Racing: 6 Regent St., Rochester, NY 14607; 585.244.5181; www.yellowjacketracing.com, yellowjacketracing@hotmail.com.

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Why a good story matters Publication Mail Agreement #40683563: Return Undeliverable Canadian Addresses to Triathlete Magazine, 328 Encinitas Blvd Suite 100, Encinitas, CA 92024

By Scott Tinley

S

ometimes sport Sometimes not.

matters.

Matters to what, you ask? To whom? Fair questions indeed. When it matters, sport makes a difference, it affects us, changes us, it resonates. Sport matters most when it transcends itself and becomes something else altogether. Like what? Another fair question. Like something that moves you, brilliantly, tragically, with humor. It’s emotive, political, ridiculous and a whole lot of fun to watch or do. In short, when sport becomes its own narrative, a story that gives meaning to our existence, it matters. Consider your first triathlon. You remember that, don’t you? The way your toenails turned black from the dried blood and your cheeks were red from sunburn and your fingers were a greasy brown from the bike chain and there were other, more private, parts that rounded out the bodily rainbow that told the story of what you’d done. What might have been lost to time and a revisionist history of the pain has instead been preserved by how damn proud you were. Did you really have to walk down stairs backwards? Who cares? You’d done something that mattered. And do you remember your first bike

crash and lying there thinking, “Oh my gosh, is this really me lying in the dirty weeds on the side of the road with pebbles imbedded in these tan and freshly-shaved legs?” But you took inventory, made sure that all the necessary parts were still attached and rode off wondering if they would let you swim at the masters workout with open wounds. For that frozen moment where the immediate past was butting up against the near future and there was no pain besides that of embarrassment, what mattered was putting that immediate present behind you. What is a little scar but a talisman of your athletic identity? Now, do you remember when you’d traveled two thousand miles to an event and had forgotten something simple—like a swimsuit or a bike helmet? And that someone just gave one to you? Here, take it, they said, I have more. Or that time you were watching someone just before a race as they rubbed some type of lubricant all over their body—and in places you don’t normally touch yourself in public. Of course when you thought about it, what a great idea? No shame in preventive medicine. And when you passed each other in the transition area on the way to the start they pushed out their hand to shake and wish you good luck. And you took it willingly. And then you told a really funny story about it later. What matters is that sport offers us these amazing stories, these malleable anecdotes from the surreal to the sublime. When recalled in the quiet moments or recast with embellished details for family and friends they somehow take on more power and

significance than when they first occurred. The power isn’t in their truth but in the effect of their re-telling. It helps if the themes are universal and distributed to a receptive audience. Julie Moss crawling across the Ironman finish line on ABC’s Wide World of Sports brewed a perfect storm of dramatic action, haunting score and accessible theme. People who saw the coverage could relate, wanted to relate. Few narratives are as powerful as overcoming adversity. When Mark Allen and Dave Scott competed side by side for nine hours at the 1989 Ironman, it wasn’t about who would win. What people remember is a kind of mutual quest to excel; to offer your own courage in an effort to challenge the others to do the same for you. There is a multitude of tales in sport that takes us away from the immediate action and provides us a way to experience the world in a different, more informed and mostly better way. Most of the best sport stories that matter are barely about sport. Alan Sillitoe’s The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner, arguably the best running story in literature, is about selfrespect, personal freedom and class consciousness. Sir Roger Bannister’s breaking the four-minute mile mark on May 6, 1954, was as much about bolstering British pride during their post-war struggle as it was about doing something first, creating a unbreakable mark. When you’re the first of anything, regardless of what happens after that, you will always own that feat. For Bannister, who went on to a 40year career as a neurologist, his 3:59.4 on that windy day near Oxford means less than a life in medicine. But he knows, as do Julie, Mark and Dave, that these stories, regardless of how they turn out, become the public property of every athlete who is touched by them. We can create our own narratives, digging deep within ourselves or extending our reach to include the collective whole of every swim, bike, run affair from 1972 to the present. What matters is that we create our own history in the scrapbooks of our minds. When the bones are tired and the next wave of athletes has moved in, the stories will still matter as they lie on the coffee table like old soldiers at the ready. ST

Triathlete (ISSN08983410) is published monthly by Triathlon Group North America LLC, 328 Encinitas Blvd., Encinitas, CA 92024; (760) 6344100. Subscription rates: U.S., one year (12 issues) $29.95 (12 issues); two years (24 issues) $49.95. Canada $51.95 per year; all other countries $61.95 per year, U.S. currency only. Periodicals postage paid at Encinitas, CA, and additional mailing offices. Single copy price $3.99. Triathlete is copyright 2003 by Triathlon Group North America, LLC. All rights reserved. Postmaster: Send address changes to Triathlete, P.O. Box 469055, Escondido, CA 92046-9513. Ride-along enclosed in all book region 2 copies. 2 0 8 J U LY 2 0 0 7

T R I AT H L E T E M A G . C O M

John Segesta/wahoomedia.com

TINLEY TALKS


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UNIQUE BIKE FOR UNIQUE PEOPLE

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Using Tripwire™ Technology, Aqua Shift™ literally “shifts” the laminar flow.

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