Issue 24.2 2017 AUS $9.95 inc GST
FEBRUARY 2017 ISSUE 24.2
TIM REED CHANGING OF THE GUARD
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2013 Ironman World Champion: Frederik Van Lierde
36 Age Group Heroes
CON T EN T S
Tim reed: Ironman 70.3 world champion AT talks to the newly crowned Ironman 70.3 World Champion, Tim Reed, about what it’s like to win on home soil, the keys to success, budgy-smugglers, racing mano-e-mano and more.
FEBRUARY 2017 Australian Triathlete
Issue 24.2 FebRUARY 2017 Tim reed - ChAngIng of The guArd
TIM REED CHANGING OF THE GUARD
20 Ironman Western Australia Race in Images
42 Product Spotlight
This month’s installment shines the spotlight on Cervelo’s personal best - the P5X.
Tim Reed shares his thoughts on running shoe ramp height and its effects on performance.
46 Road Test: 2XU
68 Body Maintenance
24 InstaPics & Age Group Heroes
The Test Lab put 2XU’s latest trisuits through their paces - find out how they stack up.
Spot yourself (or a friend) in our race snapshots, direct from Busso.
50 Road Test: Salt Therapy
We explore the key allied health services that will help you to get your engine in top shape for your next event.
See how the big day unfolded through the lense of some of Australia’s best sports photographers.
34 Courtney Atkinson’s Next Big Adventure Joel Savage caught up with Courtney to talk about his preparations for his next adventure.
36 #INSPO AT speaks to passionate age-group triathlete, Jed Shiels, who is paving the way for equality in triathlon for all.
Issue 24.2 2017 AUS $9.95 inc GST
94 Mr Percival: My Hero
Cover: Tim Reed Photography: Korupt Vision
| Australian Triathlete
Dr Mitch Anderson write’s an emotional, heartfelt memorial to the late Craig Pervical.
Touted as another method to improve recovery, AT looks inside the world of Salt Therapy to find out what it’s all about.
52 Road Test: Mizuno
72 Holistic Endurance Katee Pedicini explores heat preparation to help you get through your next hot race.
76 Strength and Conditioning
Read about the new developments in the latest edition of Mizuno’s iconic neutral runner - the Mizuno Wave Rider 20.
Kriss Hendy shares the key strength training exercises to develop shoulder strength to improve your swim.
53 Save, Spend, Splurge
Michelle Hemley shares her tips for training young athletes in the heat.
Whether you’re on a budget or have cash to burn, choose the right swimming goggles for you.
86 Youth & Junior
88 Nutrition Sports Dietitian, Peter Herzig, explores power-to-weight ratio and its impact on performance.
A PUBLICITY PRESS PUBLICATION PUBLISHER Ross Copeland EDITOR Aimee Johnsen
deputy EDITOR Margaret Mielczarek Staff Writer Manveen Maan ART DIRECTOR Andy Cumming Photo EDITOR Korupt Vision Advertising manager Aimee Johnsen Production, Administration & subscriptions Gina Copeland
ust before we hit print on this edition, the incredibly sad news came through that Craig Percival had passed away. Craig, in case you don’t know, was a huge part of the triathlon landscape in this country, as a coach, a mentor, and all round awesome human. I was privileged enough to interview Craig and his wife Lindell after his epic challenge 8 in 8 in 8 which saw him carry out 8 ironman distance events in 8 days in the 8 states and territories of Australia throughout March 2016, all in the name of charity – The John Maclean Foundation. His efforts raised over one hundred thousand dollars for those less fortunate than he. When I found out the devastating news that Craig had died after post op complications my heart sank and like many thousands of triathlon people I felt sad and in a state of disbelief. I had spoken to this man only a handful of times and yet I felt completely touched by this tragedy. I can’t even image the grief his closest, wife Lindell, children Sam and Sienna and their respective families, friends and athletes are coping with this sudden loss. Our thoughts go out to all of those who knew the man that was Craig Percival. In this edition we felt is was right to pay our respects to a man who touched so many lives in and out of the tri world. His close friend Mitch Anderson (page 94) reflects on a life so full and one that ended far too early. RIP Craig Percival.
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NEWS AND Launches
GATORADE TRIATHLON SERIES RACE 3 – ELWOOD, 5TH FEBRUARY 2017 The 2016/17 Gatorade Triathlon Series continues with Race 3 at Elwood on February 5. Offering everyone from first timers to elites a smooth and enjoyable experience, the Active Feet Fun-Tri Series and Carman’s Tri-Kids series continue into 2017 to enable all ages to compete. Don’t forget to take advantage of the Saturday before race day, when our friends at Tri-Alliance put on a tips and tricks clinic to give all those new to triathlon great advice on how to best prepare for your race the next day.
For more information head to www.gatoradetriathlonseries.com.au
Don’t Forget to Enter Challenge Melbourne
s Australia’s only major inner city half distance triathlon, CHALLENGE Melbourne promises to be a great event. With an Early Bird special now on until January 20th, take advantage of the stunning new course through Melbourne’s picturesque St Kilda, and witness the professional athletes competing for the top prize of $30,000 as well as the title of Asia-Pacific Champion. The Long Course Triathlon Event will be recognised as the 2017 Official CHALLENGE ASIA PACIFIC CHAMPIONSHIPS for the first time ever, which promises to bring hot competition to the Catani Gardens foreshore.
You can enter at www.challenge-melbourne.com.au The IronCroc Does Busso
Ironman 70.3 Saipan Launched The latest race to hit the Ironman 70.3 Asia Pacific circuit – Ironman 70.3 Saipan was recently announced. The race will be held on March 11 2017. Saipan, the capital island of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands in the Pacific Ocean about three hours flight from Tokyo, Japan. It is one of the least known territories of the United States. With a diverse culture, year-round tropical weather, historical significance and natural beauty, it is a destination well worth discovering. Registrations opened on Thursday 1st December 2016.
Don’t miss your chance to race in paradise! For more info go to the Ironman.com
| Australian Triathlete
A humorous look at the lead up to Ironman race day and how the event itself is seen from an athlete’s point of few, through the eyes of the book’s main character ‘The Croc’. The short story in poetry form goes through all the physical and emotional feelings that athletes experience while out on the course. With each page having artwork to match its verse, you will find a combination of entertaining words with black and white pictures, which will appeal to a wide variety of ages, including children, adults and parents. Testimonials include Guy Crawford, Kate Bevilaqua, Mareen Hufe, Matty White and Meredith Brook Kessler who have all been fans of The Croc for a number of years.
Buy a copy for $15 + postage now via Facebook: Steve Crenfeldt / TheIronCroc Instagram: stevecrenfeldt / theironcroc E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Victoriaâ€™s Premier Triathlon Series
Race 3 Elwood Sunday 5 February
Incorporating the National Sprint Distance Qualifying Race
Race 4 Portarlington 12 March | Race 5 St Kilda 26 March
| Australian Triathlete
Changing of the
Guard One of triathlonâ€™s all around great guys has had an epic year in 2016. With stellar performances including a win at Ironman Australia and taking out the Ironman 70.3 World Championships on home soil, Tim Reed talks about the keys to success, budgy-smugglers, racing mano-e-mano, and more.
text by MArgaret Mielczarek | p h o t o g r a p h y b y K o r u p t v i s i o n a n d G e t t y ima g e s / I r o n ma n
First up, congratulations on your recent World Championship title! Looking at your background in the sport, it is one a lot of athletes could identify with. You started out as an age grouper back in 2004 and took your time gradually improving before taking the leap of faith into the pro ranks and again have gradually stepped up to the top level. Hard work and perseverance have gotten you to where you are today. When you first became a pro, did you ever think that becoming a world champion would be a possibility? For the majority of my time as an age-group athlete, I took triathlon very casually, but I seemed to be able to do quite well against guys who were doing bucket loads more training than me. I was arrogant and naive enough then, to believe that if I ever decided to take triathlon seriously, I could win anything - a symptom of the invincible early-20s mindset perhaps. However, by the time I had turned pro, I had grown up a lot and had been well and truly spanked back to reality by the real pros, so I never really thought about whether I could win a World Championship in the early years as a pro. I was far more concerned with getting good enough to be able to make a living from the sport while being able to continue doing something I enjoyed so much.
ÂŠ Korupt Vision
Australian Triathlete |
© Getty Images/Ironman
What’s the recipe for success? How important is hard work, consistency, commitment and dedication to achieving your dreams? What would your biggest piece of advice to up and coming age groupers be about what it takes to reach the pointy end of their field? Good question. While there are going to be consistent ingredients for anyone to be successful, there is also going to be hugely individual factors because everyone’s journey, talents and personalities are different. For some athletes to win a World Championship they might need to live like a monk - living and breathing the sport. I tried that and had my worst Ironman 70.3 World Championship race in 2015. I tend to have my best races when there is a good balance in my life, and I’m happy. I think in endurance sports consistency is, absolutely, key. I’ve said for many years
| Australian Triathlete
that consistency over craziness tends to win out. Nearly all the athletes that are currently at the top of our sport have 10-15 years or more of consistent, hard training behind them. There are exceptions to the rule where crazy training can work, like Lionel Sanders who is able to absorb an incredible training load - but even his aerobic history is quite extensive as he’s been a runner most of his life. No one comes from nowhere. I’ve played sport very seriously my whole life, and throughout my teens, I was probably training 15 hours a week for team sports, which I’m certain gave me an aerobic history that allows me to compete at the level I can today. My advice to age-group athletes shooting to reach the pointy end of their field is to make sure they keep it fun and realise that for most people there is never
a triathlon achievement you will reach where you are satisfied, even though we all tell ourselves there will be. The bar just gets higher the more you achieve, so make sure you’re enjoying the journey along the way and don’t lose sight of everything else that is important in your life. Why the budgy smugglers? Surely there’s chafing… I chafe less [wearing budgy smugglers] than when I wear tri shorts, and it’s much cooler on the run. Additionally, Budgy Smuggler, who are now my longest standing sponsor, is a brand with a real social conscience that does some really great charitable work on top of breaking down the expectation of men to wear curtains of shame (shorts) as part of the global oppression of men’s freedom to showcase their upper thighs.
tim reed: CHanging of the guard © Korupt Vision
© Korupt Vision
I got 10 metres really quickly but no more than that and he was closing back when I crossed the finish line. —Tim Reed
So, you’re a husband, father, a business owner, a coach, a pro triathlete and now a World Champion - that’s a lot to juggle! How do you do it all? Do you sleep…? What does a day in the life of Tim Reed look like? It’s a juggle but nothing on what many age-group athletes manage to fit into their day. By far, my most challenging years were 2012 and 2013, as I had my son Oscar through the day while my wife worked. I trained early mornings and nights, and I was coaching about 30 athletes. Anyone who thinks being a stay at home mum is easy, is kidding themselves! I have so much respect now for what my wife does on the home front. Now I have a business partner who looks after much of the coaching business - my wife works much less, and there isn’t the financial pressure that there use to be. As for sleeping, no
not much but that has little to do with how much I have on. I’m just not a talented sleeper, which I think is why I have to do shorter blocks of training than other athletes and I often end up in an ‘over trained’ state if I try to push my builds for races for too long. Every day of my week is really different, so to explain a typical day would be difficult. We do try to
keep my training to within normal work hours on my big training days. I really dislike being home but not ‘being present’. I prefer being relaxed and done with my workday, so I often pack up my car, do 2-3 sessions and then when I come home, it’s all done. If I came home between every session, it would take a very long time to get my training day done. Australian Triathlete |
Who makes up ‘Team Reed’? How important is having the right network and support to success? First and foremost, my wife, Monica. While, it’s not all take like some athlete/ partner relationships I witness, Monica definitely bears the majority of the parenting and home life load, especially of course when I’m away. I’m extremely dependent on her support. Monica’s parents, my parents and my twin sister, Liz, are also enormously helpful. When I’m away racing and training, they make a lot of sacrifices to help out Monica with our two very energetic boys. On the coaching front, I’ve worked with Matt Dixon from Purplepatch Fitness since 2013. Matt and I have refined our athlete/ coach relationship over time to something that really works for me. If I had to pinpoint one real strength of our partnership, it’s Matt’s understanding of my racing psychology. It’s not too difficult to prepare someone physically for big races but to
have them primed mentally to ensure absolute peak performance is a real art form that Matt has down pat. I’ve also been with my manager Evan, from BPM-Sport, for the same amount of time as Matt. Again, over time we’ve gained a great understanding for how each other work and utilise each other’s strengths on the business side of the sport to very good effect. As a successful businessman, there is not a whole lot to gain for Evan except a love of the sport, and wanting professional triathletes to be rewarded adequately for our hard work. Then, of course, there are my sponsors. Not only do I have equipment that, from a performance perspective, I honestly believe is the best available, but they’ve been extremely generous with their support, allowing me to truly live like a professional athlete and focus on winning big races, rather than having to chase prize money to make a living.
You came 14th at the 70.3 Worlds in Austria in 2015, and just 12 months later you’re the one standing on top of the podium. Talk us through those 12 months – describe what changes (if any) you made to your training, lifestyle, etc. to ensure a podium finish at this year’s world champs? 2015 was a really good year despite a flop at the world champs. Some of my performances such as Challenge Dubai, Ironman 70.3 Auckland, Ironman 70.3 Port Macquarie and Ironman 70.3 Cebu were very pleasing performances and showed improvement from previous years. In retrospect, I think the mistake we made for the 2015 world champs and Ironman WA was making the build for those races too long. Three to four weeks out from each event I had really strong lead-up races, winning 70.3 events, but by race day [at the 2015 World Championships and at Ironman WA] I was really flat. So, this year we simply took more time off after races
© Korupt Vision
| Australian Triathlete
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© Getty reed Images/Ironman Tim
Battle Royale: Some of the biggest names in triathlon battled it out in Mooloolaba.
and did shorter build periods going into the peak races to good effect. Ironman Australia was only five weeks of really focused Ironman training, and for the 70.3 World Champs, I completed a 5-week ‘push’ phase. Trying to keep the build going right through to Kona was too long, and I was back feeling really exhausted. After coaching many athletes over the years, I know this certainly wouldn’t work for many athletes, but for guys like myself and Sam Appleton with a big endurance base to draw on I feel this is the optimal formula. I also worked hard on the mental side of racing. I’ve got much better at controlling my pre-race anxiety and not allowing the importance of the occasion get to me.
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Race day - tell us how the day unfolded for you. For the first time before a World Championship, I had my whole family with me. I felt far more relaxed than I had ever been. Having Monica and the boys around was a constant reminder that no matter how the race went I still had far more important things going on in my life with our boys. As soon as I got in the water, I felt great and couldn’t wait to race. Instead of feelings of potential failure trepidation, I felt really grateful to be there and excited by the opportunity to race in front of so many of my family and friends. I had a great start in the swim, which normally dictates how the rest of the swim goes. I was right where I needed to be exiting the water. Onto the bike I moved to the front and made sure I was in the
front 3-4 riders for the entire ride in case Sebi [Sebastian Kienle] or Lionel [Sanders] went berserk, and I could go with the moves. Off the bike, I lost a little time in transition but steadily moved up to Sebi and then from there it became a two-man race until the final few kilometres where Rudi Wilde started to come into the picture. I’m going to assume you were happy with how the day panned out! But, looking back was there anything you think you’d do differently? I probably wouldn’t have celebrated so much in the weeks following the race and would have tried to recover and rest up more for Kona. I still trained really hard for Kona, but I wasn’t as focused on the recovery side of things.
tim reed: Changing of the guard
It looked like a fight the whole way (especially on that run!) – what was it like going mano-e-mano with Sebastian? What was going through your head? Sebi is a super clever dude and a superstar of the sport whom I have so much respect for. So, to be side by side with him was incredible. In July, I was part of an epic battle with Crowie, Appo, Terenzo and Andy Potts on the run at Ironman 70.3 Vineman. I was feeling amazing, so I kept attacking the group with strong surges. Eventually, I got a break with 2kms to go, but then the wheels fell off and Andy, who had run a more consistent pace, dieseled past me with 1km to go to take the win. I learnt a lot from that defeat and that I put to good use against Sebi. Sebi said we should work together to break up the sections of the course that had a strong head wind and we did to great effect for the first half of the run. Then Sebi started throwing in a lot of really strong surges. Learning from Vineman, instead of responding immediately I tried to pace my way back to Sebi slowly, not burning too many matches. However, by 15 or 16kms the gap had really blown out, and I was struggling to wind him back. I put the result out of my mind, relaxed and just tried to focus on running the best final 5kms I could. Sebi started to falter a little, and with 2kms to go, I was back in the game. I suspected that on the final downhill, given Sebi had already put in so many surges, that I would be able to out-kick him. I got 10 metres really quickly but no more than that and he was closing back when I crossed the finish line. It must have been awesome to have a home crowd behind you - do you think that played a role in keeping you fighting? A huge role. I race best in events where there is a great atmosphere and crowd support. To have so much of the Mooloolaba crowd support behind me gave me an extra few percent that day for sure.
© Korupt Vision
Did you expect the outcome? Were there moments in your 03:44:14 hour day where you thought – “I’ve got this in the bag!” Or did you have moments where you thought, “Sh*t! I can’t do this - it’s not going to happen today!” In 2015 I went into the world champs thinking that I had ticked every box, trained harder than I ever had and had the best lead up race I could have hoped for. I genuinely expected to be on the podium. In 2016, I had done far less, had some major interruptions to my prep so really
I lost a little time in transition but steadily moved up to Sebi and then from there it became a two-man race. —Tim Reed
didn’t have any expectations except that I wanted to get the absolute best out of what I had in the day. However, as soon as the race started I knew that I was having one of those days where I could be truly competitive for the top spot. What does it mean to you to win the 70.3 worlds - and on home soil? What does it mean to your family? Do your boys understand that their dad is a World Champion? I bet they keep you grounded. It means a lot. A World Championship title is one that you get to keep for life and to experience the win in Australia was a truly magical moment. It’s also a reality check. My boys, family and true friends are proud but don’t really care. Winning a world title doesn’t make you a good dad, friend, husband or person. What it does do, I hope, is provide a platform to try and do something good for some other causes I’m passionate about. Australian Triathlete |
Tim reed: Changing of the guard So, you win worlds. What happens next, did you celebrate and take any time off or was it straight back to training after the race? Was Kona ever in doubt? I took five days off and then was back into training. Kona was definitely in doubt simply because I knew how deep I had gone mentally to get over the top of Sebi and, as much as I tried to convince myself that I would be fine, I know I can only go to the mental well once every few months. I trained hard for Kona but didn’t really focus on the recovery side of things. I enjoyed plenty of nights out with friends and family and which probably contributed to getting to Kona overcooked.
© Getty Images/Ironman
Obviously, you decided to race. Talk us through your prep. Do you think your effort at the 70.3 worlds impacted you prep at all? What is it like (physically, mentally, emotionally) building to another major event in such a short space of time? And on the family - that must have been a big few weeks in the Reed household! The training was fine. I felt like we got the mix right up until I left for Kona. Once I got to Kona, I didn’t have the family with me for the first week, and I overdid it in the heat. On top of the massive emotional rollercoaster of winning 70.3 worlds, I didn’t stick to the plan, did extra training and left myself get very tired on race day. What were your expectations going into Kona? Did you feel any extra pressure to perform at Kona given the win at the 70.3 worlds? I always feel a lot of pressure from myself going into any race although I don’t think winning the 70.3 worlds added extra pressure. We had a conservative plan of shooting for a top 10 rather than risking shooting for a podium, which can often lead to an explosion out there.
© Korupt Vision
© Getty Images/Ironman
Top: Runner-up Sebastian Kienle falls to his knee’s with exhaustion as Tim Reed breaks the tape. Bottom: Tim Reed’s family and number one support crew
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Tim reed: Changing of the guard
© Korupt Vision
Unfortunately, the day ended with a DNF. What happened? When did you realise you were in trouble? I knew the day before when my legs ached and I was really out of breath walking up stairs that I was in trouble. From the start of the swim, I felt bad. From the start of the bike, I felt even worse. I just couldn’t get my legs to push any power, and my heart rate was stuck in zone 2. Were you disappointed with the DNF? How do you deal with a DNF result especially after coming from such a high at the Mooloolaba? Of course. Going to Kona with a family is a very costly holiday when you come away with a DNF, but more importantly, people, especially Americans and Americanbased sponsors, often judge a whole athlete’s year based on a Kona performance, so it’s hard not to feel like you’ve let a lot of people down.
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Do you have any long-term plans for the Big Island? Do you think you have it in you to go for the big win one day? I definitely have long-term ambitions for Kona. Racing the best guys is what motivates and excites me most about triathlon and Kona provides that opportunity. I did a Kona training camp before the Ironman 70.3 World Championships and gained a lot of belief that I can handle the conditions well after some moderated Ironman simulation days. I know I can be successful there in time. I also don’t want to make the mistake that many pros make of chasing Kona success at the expense of turning their back on racing so many of the other great races around the world. The harsh reality of Kona is that some of the best athletes in the world will never have the opportunity to win an Ironman World Championship because their physiology is not suited to eight hours in intense heat
and humidity. It’s unlikely to happen, but I think the Ironman World Championships should rotate locations like every other legitimate sport. What’s next for Tim Reed? What do you hope to achieve in the next 12 months? Will you defend your 70.3 World Champion title and will Kona be back on the agenda? First up, a break from triathlon. I’m a little ‘triathloned’ out at the moment and really looking forward to a month of not being tired, not worrying about my diet and catching up with friends and family. I’m going to shoot for both World Championships again but start the prep for Chattanooga later so that hopefully I’m not fried by Kona. A very vague overview will be, a couple of middle distance events leading up to an early season Ironman. Then, a mini-off season in May/June before a strong run into the September/October.
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On a day with perfect racing conditions, fast times and exceptional performances, Terenzo Bozzone and Melissa Hauschildt, stomped to victory in record-breaking times and showed that they are forces to be reckoned with as they claimed their respective wins.
| Australian Triathlete
© Delly Carr/Ironman
WESTERN AUSTRALIA BUSSELTON
© Delly Carr/Ironman
© Dennis Tan/Paparazzi on the Run
top: Terenzo Bozzone runs to victory in a record breaking time of 7:51:26 below (L-R): Åsa Lundström finished off the year with a fourth place. Australian Melissa Hauschildt broke the tape in a new course record time of 8:54:39, Levi Maxwell made his pro Ironman debut in Australia with a 10th place finish and Andy Potts took home second place.
Australian Triathlete |
TOP (L-R): Reigning champion Sarah Piampiano could not repeat her 2015 performance but still earned herself a spot on the podium with a third place. Mareen Hufe had another great race in Busso with a second place finish and the fastest bike split. Middle (L-R): Jens Petersen-Bach made the journey from Denmark wirth while finishing in fourth. Nick Kastelein has had an impressive year and finished it off with a third place podium finish. Bottom (left): Terenzo Bozzone, Melissa Hauschildt, Womens podium - Mareen Hufe (2nd), Melissa Hauschildt (1st), Sarah Piampiano (3rd)
| Australian Triathlete
© Dennis Tan/Paparazzi on the Run
WESTERN AUSTRALIA BUSSELTON © AT
Australian Triathlete |
@ momentumendurance #REPOST Shark spotting with Neo @ Busselton Jetty #IMWA #raceweekshananigans #MEC
|COUNTD l I line
til 6 sleeps away
Ironman!! up for my 7th
@ brionywilliamson1 Key race prep done Jamaican nails oh wait I mean #HTC nails! Best of both worlds really. Got to be matching on race day. The lady in the nail salon was skeptical of my colour choices.... #nails #bussoIM #busselton #ironman #imwa #racenails
| Australian Triathlete
@ nathan groch Th Busso. A e lads ny should sa other #mobros have spoken and he ve their st th ache unti ading down to #ime mo is the go fo r l Sunday. #mobrosf wa and #im703bus orbusso so
@ busseltontriathlonclub An offshore breeze lulled us into a false sense of security for the ironman practice swim around the jetty. It looked flat!! #ironmantraining #imwa
@ irongirl70 Love my new charms from @ fitandstyle_ ..arrived just in time for IM Busselton..hope they’ll be lucky for me.. #ironmanbusselton2016 #IMWA
@ jedshiels Tuesday nigh t before @malf87 takes off tap with the lads for @ironmanasiapac #IMWA - Good luck MAA AATE!!! #trainwithmates #ridemelbourne
@ trudy_tri_run 4 days to go and my last Wonderful Windy Wednesday. I’ve learnt to embrace and enjoy for windtrainer. It’s built strength in my legs and I now have muscles.
We scoured Instagram and social media to see how the #IMWA experience played out in your eyes!
@ georgia.rhodes SMIL ES + SUNSHINE I could not be any happier with how yesterdayâ€™s race went. t a huge group Wha & formance N @ titanper ss the nation for #TITA ds and ro en weekend ac bassadors, fri ptional am s, te hle at some exce #XTERR A deserving of family. Truly a great bunch of peeps. results; what
@ aliseselsy Had a blast giving out some gifts from @funkitaswimwear & @funkytrunks yesterday at #IMWA ! #lovefunkita #getfunked #fteam #ironmantri #busselton
@ markjankovskis Finding a way to go finally go sub-10 & smash a personal best #sockgame at #IMWA. Thank you @ironmanasiapac for hosting an awesome event.
h ~ DRAKEY ~ @ peterdangersmit #thegoz #single sso #bu n nma #iro wa #im
@ trudy_tri_run And the Ironman spam starts. What an amazing experience. It was tough, but I loved it. I finished in 12.05.16 and am absolutely so happy.
ic Sunday!!!! IM at was one ep e @ krsiddle Th at success for all #triallianc an nm Busso was a greud of you all! #youareaniro pro so nce athletes, usso #endura elax #inspiration #b d #IMWA now itâ€™s time to #r #doneandduste #beach and drink some the at d hang an #redwine
@ nurseandrew #1fangirl @elen ivay. Go @ phantom_rusty #imwa
@ grace_cherishlife Grateful to all who help me on my path to Kona and in this sport! Having them there with me and finish line hugs from my sister, mum and god daughter are what made my soul so happy at Ironman number 10 in Busselton yesterday!
Australian Triathlete |
WESTERN AUSTRALIA BUSSELTON
Age Group Heroes
Ironman Western Australia has long been a favourite amongst Australian and international athletes alike. Here are some of our Age Group Heroes who battled it out in the 2016 SunSmart Ironman Western Australia.
Name: JO KOCIK Bib#: 261 Age group: 30-34 Finish time: 10:17:59
Name: RACHEL MATTHEWS Bib#: 1150 Age group: 40-44 Finish time: 10:34:56
Name: RUSTY COOK Bib#: 113 Age group: 55-59 Finish time: 10:54:56
Name: JULIA TROTTER Bib#: 759 Age group: 30-34 Finish time: 10:40:06
Name: CASEY HYDE Bib#: 1573 Age group: PC Finish time: 14:34:18
Name: STEVE WHITTINGTON Bib#: 1321 Age group: 45-49 Finish time: 11:00:25
Name: JAMES TYLER Bib#: 340 Age group: 40-44 Finish time: 10:43:43
Name: CRAIG THWAITES Bib#: 879 Age group: 35-39 Finish time: 10:45:35
Name: MARDY HUNT Bib#: 253 Age group: 35-39 Finish time: 11:55:32
| Australian Triathlete
2016 Ironman Western Australia / Age group heroes
Name: ZOE ADAMS Bib#: 181 Age group: 25-29 Finish time: 09:42:17
Name: JOSH VARDY Bib#: 718 Age group: 30-34 Finish time: 14:19:14
Name: IAN FLEGO Bib#: 1205 Age group: 45-49 Finish time: 09:12:57
Name: TODD RIDGE Bib#: 1610 Age group: 40-44 Finish time: 09:35:11
Name: JAMES DEBENHAM Bib#: 216 Age group: 35-39 Finish time: 09:14:39
Name: KERRI RENSHAW Bib#: 158 Age group: 40-44 Finish time: 11:26:19
Name: JOEL MACALLISTER Bib#: 1603 Age group: 25-29 Finish time: 09:13:50
Name: MICHAEL BEGG Bib#: 193 Age group: 40-44 Finish time: 09:31:41
Name: SEAN BRUNT Bib#: 110 Age group: 40-44 Finish time: 08:47:19
Name: LEVI HAUWERT Bib#: 130 Age group: 30-34 Finish time: 08:43:41
Name: BEN CASTLES Bib#: 205 Age group: 25-29 Finish time: 09:22:10
Name: TOM NORRIS Bib#: 298 Age group: 30-34 Finish time: 09:24:28
Australian Triathlete |
2016 Ironman Western Australia / Age group heroes
Name: BRAD WALL Bib#: 1612 Age group: 30-34 Finish time: 08:51:04
Name: DAVID THORNE Bib#: 479 Age group: 35-39 Finish time: 09:41:18
Name: DAVID CLARK Bib#: 207 Age group: 30-34 Finish time: 09:18:32
Name: NIKOLAI JENKINS Bib#: 137 Age group: 30-34 Finish time: 09:15:17
Name: ANDREW MCDERMOTT Bib#: 831 Age group: 35-39 Finish time: 09:28:28
Name: DARREN FRANKEN Bib#: 228 Age group: 45-49 Finish time: 09:35:02
Name: BRENDAN FLANAGAN Bib#: 224 Age group: 40-44 Finish time: 09:15:11
Name: ANTHONY ITALIANO Bib#: 658 Age group: 30-34 Finish time: 11:49:22
Name: BROCK MILLARD Bib#: 283 Age group: 25-29 Finish time: 09:18:56
Name: MICHAEL GRAY Bib#: 238 Age group: 30-34 Finish time: 10:05:14
Name: ROB DENDLE Bib#: 217 Age group: 25-29 Finish time: 09:17:03
Name: THOMAS ORCHARD Bib#: 304 Age group: 30-34 Finish time: 10:15:16
| Australian Triathlete
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2016 Ironman Western Australia / Age group heroes
Name: PETER THAUS Bib#: 336 Age group: 40-44 Finish time: 09:30:09
Name: JOHN DOMANDL Bib#: 1569 Age group: PC Finish time: 10:44:37
Name: CHRISTIAN FÃ„SSLER Bib#: 223 Age group: 25-29 Finish time: 08:54:49
Name: JODIE BROWNING Bib#: 199 Age group: 40-44 Finish time: 10:16:14
Name: BEN BELL Bib#: 106 Age group: 40-44 Finish time: 08:45:02
Name: MALACHY FRIEL Bib#: 400 Age group: 25-29 Finish time: 10:09:37
Name: NATHAN GROCH Bib#: 240 Age group: 30-34 Finish time: 08:57:39
Name: PETER SPENCER Bib#: 703 Age group: 30-34 Finish time: 12:00:42
Name: LARS DYRHOLM HANSEN Bib#: 126 Age group: 30-34 Finish time: 08:42:40
Name: JUNE WARD Bib#: 1524 Age group: 55-59 Finish time: 10:58:06
Name: BLAKE KAPPLER Bib#: 1598 Age group: 30-34 Finish time: 08:48:54
Name: BELINDA DENNIS Bib#: 218 Age group: 40-44 Finish time: 10:20:27
| Australian Triathlete
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2016 Ironman Western Australia / Age group heroes
Name: BIANCA FITZSIMMONS Bib#: 1591 Age group: 40-44 Finish time: 14:42:11
Name: KEVIN ROBERTSON Bib#: 1078 Age group: 40-44 Finish time: 09:03:26
Name: MEG GESCHKE Bib#: 407 Age group: 30-34 Finish time: 11:54:10
Name: MICHAEL MAHER Bib#: 1044 Age group: 40-44 Finish time: 11:19:45
Name: JASMINE DAVIE Bib#: 215 Age group: 18-24 Finish time: 10:42:46
Name: JASON GEIKIE Bib#: 232 Age group: 40-44 Finish time: 11:11:13
Name: EMIR MUJCINOVIC Bib#: 293 Age group: 35-39 Finish time: 08:48:33
Name: CHANTAL LEIGH-SMITH Bib#: 434 Age group: 40-44 Finish time: 11:00:38
Name: FIONA LENZ Bib#: 916 Age group: 35-39 Finish time: 11:08:23
Name: BRETT ARCHBOLD Bib#: 103 Age group: 35-39 Finish time: 09:30:23
Name: NATHAN SUMNER Bib#: 707 Age group: 30-34 Finish time: 10:25:16
Name: ELIZABETH MCSWEENEY Bib#: 1449 Age group: 50-54 Finish time: 15:45:24
| Australian Triathlete
SEE TECHNICAL FEATURES IN
Australian Triathlete |
Atkinson’s Next Big Adventure Courtney Atkinson is a veteran of the Australian triathlon scene with a couple of decades of elite racing under his belt. A junior world champion, multiple times Australian Champion and two-time Olympian. He’s raced and had success at nearly every format possible, from ITU to Half ronman,XTERRA and Cross Tri. Courtney’s next adventure will see him take on the iconic 243km Kathmandu Coast to Coast challenge in New Zealand in February vying for the title of World Multisport Challenge. Joel Savage caught up with Courtney to talk about these preparations.
Coast to Coast? Wow, that’s a big race! Why have you decided to take part? It’s a bucket list event! Honestly, I thought I’d be doing it one day, retired, with mates for the adventure but I’m still loving endurance training and moving fast and the adventure side of the sport for me is so epic. Just look at what’s involved in Kathmandu Coast 2 Coast. The challenges it presents with a new sport for me, paddling, intermixed with some of my real strengths is appealing. I’m all in now. I’m an official ambassador for the event and doing everything I can to give the race a real good crack. The thing I like is my mates can also enter the two-day, two person race in a more relaxed environment while still experiencing the same epic course that I am doing the single day challenge. The first step is to head over to NZ and recon the course where I’ve got one of the best in the business as my tour guide, Rich Ussher. I’m in good hands.
| Australian Triathlete
What have you changed in your training since deciding to take on the Kathmandu Coast to Coast event? How has it been training on the gold coast? Overall, I’ve gone back to some real good aerobic focused training, which is something I’ve responded well to in the past. I’m not doing massive distances yet but a lot of continuous longer efforts at a pace that gets progressively less comfortable as time goes on. Coast 2 Coast will be the longest continuous race I’ve done so it’s nice to not worry about how fast I’m moving, at least initially. Specifically, I’m subbing paddling time for my old swim hours and with the running, I’m practicing getting across the rock faster and more efficiently. We have some good spots on the Gold Coast to practice creeks. I’ve got a good old crew of hardened adventure racers who have been, and still are, some of the best in the game helping me with specifics.
Gold coast is perfect for me to train with my focus on getting up to speed on the kayak. Some of my best mates are Olympians - there’s surf clubs paddling everywhere you look. It has also helped that my backyard lake that I’ve used for open water swimming for 15 years doubles as good flat water paddle session... although it takes a few laps to get the km’s up so I’m looking forward to getting out in the ocean and doing some longer paddle backs. I’m headed to NZ in December for a course reccy and to get a feel for the whitewater, which I will work on a few times over the coming months. What do you enjoy about paddling a surf ski and kayaks? And do you see any benefits to other triathletes taking it up? Bringing anything new into training always invigorates what you do. After 20 years of swim training, changing the arm focus to paddling has done wonders for my
motivation and because it’s new my improvement is daily, and mentally that keeps me wanting more and more. I really have had to make sure I take my time and not get too excited to quick, as I don’t want any niggles with the newer movements, but to be honest I have never felt stronger. As a cross-training sport for triathlon I feel it has some great benefits when using good technique. Not only for swimming but also for running. The main development has been improved stability around my ribcage, shoulder position and general core strength. All of these convert to making running feel better, running taller and more stable. Plus while I was swimming and paddling, the front end of my swim stroke shoulder range increased in both flexibility and strength. All three triathlon disciplines swim bike and run are hunched shoulder sports and the active strength developed with shoulder back and straight back paddling offered me better feel than I would compared to doing similar back/shoulder exercises in the gym. Hey, it’s not going to make you a better swimmer, but as cross exercise or sport to give you a break from swim, bike and run, I believe it offers some very specific benefits. How has the new paddling skills been going? So far I’ve been in a Fenn Swordfish S in the flat water with Fenn 3 blade. Initially just concentrating on building up some muscle memory for the paddle stroke starting at 20mins continuous over a few weeks working up to one hour at a reasonably consistent effort. I’ve just started adding some fartlek style efforts in to mix it up with the aim to get a better purchase on the water. The thing is my heart rate is so low paddling, as I obviously can’t produce enough power with the skill and training yet. I’m so raw I haven’t even had roof racks for my WRX STI so I’ve been contained to paddling in the flat water lake out the back of my house. But that’s changing next week when I’ll start joining sessions with surf clubs and getting some expertise off mates like Kenny Wallace. I have plenty of very qualified paddlers to help and train with. This year’s field is looking pretty awesome with multiple winner Braden Currie set to make a return and 2016 champ Sam Clark also coming back as well as Alex Hunt who got 3rd last year - how do you rate your chances of a podium in that field and where do you feel your strengths and weaknesses lie across all of the disciplines? Yeah it’s an amazing field. The more the better as I believe this is one of the most iconic endurance races you will ever see,
coast to coast
that is why it has been on my bucket list for so long. And even though I thought I’d be doing it for fun in retirement vs. training myself to try to finish at the pointy end with limited experience, I do have 20 years for endurance training base behind me. The big question is how my paddling stacks up. I’m not completely raw as I’ve lived on the Gold Coast all my life and I’ve tried surf ski’s as a teenager but that was a long time ago! Swimming has always been strong for me so I just have to convert that strength over to the right technique in the boat. Have you been to New Zealand before? If so how was it and are you heading there soon etc? Yeah I’ve been to New Zealand plenty of times. It is an amazing location with some of the best scenery and adventures on the globe. Most of my time has been spent down around Queenstown but I’ve have driven through Arther Pass before and soon enough I’ll see what I’ve really got myself into when we check out the course. So with so much experience racing do you get nervous at the thought of such an epic and long race? And do you set yourself a goal with a challenge like this or is that too hard to predict? I definitely get excited about the challenge as it’s so different, nervous because there
are some new unknowns and skills to perform and yes the distances are huge especially the new kayck at 70kms! This will be my longest race I’ve done but I have raced very well over 4-6hrs before and completed an ironman in 8:35 give or take. The big difference here that gives me confidence is Kathmandu Coast to Coast always has something going on to keep your brain ticking... in comparison to an Ironman which in reality is a very repetitive and mentally draining event. The run here is 3hrs of rock, creek crossing, trail & amazing scenery and the paddle is long but includes moving water rapids to contend with. Even the break up of the race is interesting - a 3km run start, to a packed road ride and then the other two sections of the bike are individual TT. A goal is very hard to know or even think about at this stage. I still haven’t been in the river or paddled anywhere near the hours I will during the event. But as the race gets closer and I know what to expect, I’m sure like any other event I go into, I will want to be the best I can be and in the back of my mind I always am wanting more.... I haven’t looked as forward to a challenge as this since I made my first Olympics Team
Coast to Coast: The Coast to Coast is an iconic multisport event based in the South Island of New Zealand and is one of the world’s longest running multi-sport events founded in 1983. The brutal 243km challenge is traditionally run over two days that sees competitors take on a course combining several run and rides portions as well as 70km river section. The single day race - ‘The Longest Day’ – was introduced in 1989 and has the title of World Multisport Championship. The top single day athletes are expected to finish the course around the 11hour mark while the Two Day races will be finished in and around the 24-hour mark. For more info head head to www.coasttocoast.co.nz/
Australian Triathlete |
| Australian Triathlete
In MEASURE Equality - noun, the state of being equal, especially in status, rights, or opportunities. t e x t b y M a r g a r e t M i e l c z a r e k | p h o t o g r a p h y b y RE A DY . S A LTED . I M A GES
something. I’m a big believer in setting goals and developing a plan on how you’re going to achieve them. I watched a friend race the inaugural Ironman Melbourne in 2013 where he qualified for Kona and was very inspired. After a few beers, I remember thinking “I can do that” and it all started from there. After a lot of work and commitment, 12 months later I was standing on the start line of Ironman Melbourne ready to take on my first Ironman. I love long course racing - I love the challenge, and the commitment you need to fulfil the goal. I’m also very lucky to have a partner, friends and family who support me and come along for the ride. Having the right support is so important.
On his sporting background and how he started in triathlon. I grew up in country Victoria riding horses and helping out my old man with his racehorses. I was not the most coordinated kid but tried a lot of sports. I had all the gear, but nothing really took my fancy in those early days. Although, one sport that I did enjoy was swimming. I’m proud to say I was swimming age champion in Year 7. It wasn’t until my early 20s, after a successful battle with weight loss, that I discovered the gym and running. It was around that time that I really started to value a healthy and fit lifestyle. My venture into triathlon started when I was at university - a friend dared me to a do a Sprint Distance triathlon with him. I agreed but went in very underprepared and, as a consequence, it’s safe to say that I hated my first triathlon experience. But the post-race exhilaration and the satisfaction had me hooked! I continued to enjoy triathlon over the short course distance, never taking it too seriously. I have always been someone who cannot be stopped once I put my mind to
On his second Ironman – the 2015 Ironman Western Australia (IMWA) I put a solid six months into IMWA, after building a good base prior - I even surprised myself with my consistency and commitment leading into this race. I went in with an ambitious personal goal to go under 10 hours. I sat down with my coach and figured out a plan. I knew the day would have to go 100% my way for me to achieve my goal. Unfortunately, I came out of the water about 5 minutes slower than I wanted but soon realised that it was a slow swim for most. My bike was where the magic happened. I remember hearing my coach yell at the 90km mark, “Stay consistent - you’ve worked your way into the top 15!” Coming off the bike, I ran into T1 to the words: “Welcome to the pointy end. You are in the top 10!” I normally keep my emotions under control, but hearing that, I immediately felt an overwhelming mix of emotion. I was off my goal time, but I was still completely exceeding my expectations. I took a deep breath to calm myself and off I went. I put myself in the hurt box on the run! I didn’t run like I knew I
could, but ended up crossing the finish line in 12th position, with a total time of 10:27:32 – I was stoked! On representing the LGBTIQ community at IMWA with the support by Jaggad and Stand Up Events Leading into IMWA, I approached Jaggad with the idea of racing in a custom-made tri suit to support the #triwithpride movement, and they were 100% supportive. I also met Angie from Stand Up Events and saw how passionate she is about equality in sport, which made me even more excited about wearing the custom-made suit. I really just wanted to openly represent the LGBTIQ community in a sport and a culture where no one else has in the past. There is a lot of momentum in other sports, like the AFL, but not so much in a sport like triathlon. In the lead up to IMWA, I was able to have some meaningful conversations with people about my story and how debilitating homophobic behaviour and language can be, especially
eople have fought for equality for centuries (and still are) – we have the feminist movement, along with the fight for equal pay, and for equal rights. Over the last few years, equality for women in triathlon (#50womentoKona) has increased its prominence. But what about equality for other minorities in sport – specifically the LGBTIQ community? What about equality for all? Meet Joseph, or Jed, as he is affectionately known, a passionate 30-year-old triathlete from Melbourne, who is taking a stand against the hetero-normative culture of sport and paving the way for equality in triathlon for all.
Acceptance: Jed (centre) with his friends and teammates from Tri Alliance. Australian Triathlete |
On “coming out” as an LGBTIQ athlete I came out to my mum when I was 26 and then slowly to the rest of my family after that. It was no big deal for mum - I think my old man struggled a little bit more because he was upset that I had to deal with this secret for so long, by myself. It was a long time before I felt comfortable talking about it with others outside of my family network. That meant keeping big secrets, and that’s a terrible feeling. I’ve been very lucky and have never had a negative reaction. But I did protect myself when coming out in the sports space. For me, coming out to other athletes would only really be an option once I knew that there wouldn’t be a negative reaction. I was in the sport for a couple of years before “coming out”. I had a lot of fear that I would be treated differently and that being “gay”, I would be perceived as more feminine or as not having the same ability as my peers. I also didn’t want to be the token gay guy. Thankfully I don’t think I get treated differently. I think being part of an amazing and accepting club (Tri-Alliance) has helped. Saying that, as a gay person in sport, when I hear the words: “Homo”, “Poof”, “That’s gay”, “C’mon homo”, even if they’re not directed at me, it’s very hard just to dismiss these words. You can’t un-hear them! On experiencing homophobia Unfortunately, I have many examples of this, but here is just one. I remember training at The Tan one night and we were finishing an epic run set with hill repeats. I was running with a mate, and we were having a bit of banter to motivate each other and to develop a bit of competition. Every time, as we took off at the bottom of the hill, he would shout, “C’mon poof!” In fairness, he didn’t know I was gay at the time, and it didn’t bother me the first couple of times. But doing repeats it soon got to me. It bothered me that he thought I would run faster if I were called a “poof” - do gay people run slower than straight people? I’d had enough, so I beat him to it and said - “Careful mate, you might get beaten by a homo!” I took off up the hill and left him behind. On reflection, I’m not sure that was the right way to handle the situation, but it worked at the time.
| Australian Triathlete
for young people starting out in sport. My hope was, and continues to be, to make other LGBTIQ athletes feel comfortable to give triathlon a shot and know that they are welcome. I’m passionate about this and will continue to spread my story.
On the hetero-normative culture of sport and equality for the LGBTIQ community I think overall there is a strong heteronormative culture in triathlon. My feeling is that we are probably a bit ignorant to this, but the more we try and promote our sport and welcome people into the triathlon community we will see this as more of an issue. I think work at club level is really important so that people who identify LGBTIQ can feel comfortable and safe to be themselves. There are many LGBTIQ specific sporting clubs in Melbourne, but none of which are triathlon related. This is fantastic, but not all LGBTIQ people want to access these clubs, as they might not meet their tri-specific needs. When sport has such a hetero-normative history, we need to savvy in how we include people from diverse backgrounds moving forwards. Regarding equality, firstly, let me say that the movement happening to support women and to give women the same opportunities in triathlon as men is great, but I do think the LGBTIQ community are under-represented. I think that has a lot to do with our culture. As I have already mentioned, language is a big one, and we need to be inclusive and mindful of the words we use - my coming out was stinted every time I heard homophobic language. As a young fella I was searching for a role model, someone that was like me, so I do think that when we have more LGBTIQ people coming out in sport the younger generations, and even the older that don’t feel comfortable with their sexuality will feel comfortable to be who they really are. I would love to see peak triathlon bodies stand proudly on this issue and develop strategies on increasing participation and equality for all athletes.
On his advice to other athletes Everyone is different and on their own journey. If I think back to the time in my life where I started in triathlon, I was very closeted and had significant fear that I would be found out. At that time in my life, I had a secret life where I was never really myself. I don’t think we can expect every LGBTIQ person to stand up and speak out. I hope that for the athletes that do speak out we can make an impact in our sporting codes for the better so that LGBTIQ athletes of the future can be successful in sport. My message to triathletes and the wider community is that we need to remember that people come from so many difference backgrounds, all with their own stories. I think triathlon for many people is bigger than swim, bike and run. For some, like me, it really helps you to understand who you are as a person. We need to be able to nurture this and support people in their goals instead of just focusing on times, split and numbers. For me as a gay athlete, a big message is to be inclusive in your language and culture.
Fun Facts: • One thing you can’t live without… Coffee! • If not triathlon… Horse riding • When not training… Netflix • A guilty pleasure… Blueberry muffins • Bucket list race… Ironman Sweden • Athlete you admire… Jan Frodeno
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tech talk Tri Products
Oakley RADAR PACE Oakley and Intel have teamed up to create a product that would allow athletes of all types to not only train hard but train well by equipping them with rich information and real-time feedback. Combining Oakley’s performance-centric design aesthetic with Intel’s experience-driven technology, Radar Pace delivers a truly innovative and personalised training mechanism for athletes of all skill levels. Radar Pace is a virtual coach that supports athletes during every step of their running and cycling training journey – interpreting data in real-time, providing personalized and actionable instruction and motivation during the course of a workout and holding athletes accountable to a structured and dynamic training program. With a hands-free conversational interface powered by Intel® Real Speech, Radar Pace helps athletes stay focused and maintain optimal training position, and the Bluetooth® audio headset allows athletes to place and receive calls and texts and listen to music. We’re giving these a road test as we go to print so stayed tuned for our review in the coming editions. RRP: $449.00 www.oakley.com/Radar-Pace
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| Australian Triathlete
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RRP: $139.95 www.echelonsports.com.au
2XU Limited Edition Origami Compression Tights The art of performance starts with the right compression. 2XU’s limited edition Origami tight is designed using the world’s most advanced compression technology; offering more power and increased flexibility thanks to its light-weight PWX fabric. Origami offers a sleek look for summer, providing support and control with the added benefit of sculpting to smooth bumps for a flattering fit. The performance fabric delivers advanced climate control, moisture wicking yarns, UPF50+ sun protection, antibacterial and anti-chafe material.
SILCA TATTICO MINI-PUMP The Silica ‘Tactical’ mini-pump designed to be large enough to work well, while being small enough in footprint that it can nearly disappear alongside a bottle cage on your high end bike. The Tattico is also the first SILCA portable pump since the 1950’s to use a hose. We’ve cleverly positioned the hose inside the inner barrel where it is able to slide in and out of the end of the pump without being removed or having to thread in place. The hose attaches with a compression gasket activated by a small aluminum lever. In classic SILCA fashion, the compression gasket it reversible for Presta or Schrader.
2XU’s limited edition Origami compression tights are available in store or online for a limited time only. Don’t miss out, shop now at 2XU.com RRP: $150 www.2xu.com
RRP: $99.95 www.echelonsports.com.au
ORCA Transition Bag The protective helmet zip pocket at the top of the bag means your helmet will be in safe hands no matter where the bag is going. A generously sized 70L bag with pockets for everything you could possibly imagine: wet and dry compartments, specially lined pouches to keep personal items like electronics/keys/passports safe. Thick padded straps that can also be converted to one carry bag strap make this transition bag your ideal travel companion whether on a plane or just to your local triathlon race. And the classic Orca black and white styling with reflective accents combined with a high contrast bright green interior to make finding everything in this bag a breeze all contribute to one good looking bag. RRP: $189.99 www.orca.com
Australian Triathlete |
Product: Cervelo P5X
Reveal Their Personal Best
t the 2016 Ironman World Championship in Kona Hawaii, Cervélo’s launched their new triathlon bike, yes you read right, triathlon bike. Not a TT bike made to fit the UCI guidelines but one made for you, triathletes. The bike they are calling their personal best – the P5X. Pioneering a brand new “personal” approach and featuring revolutionary technologies that address the unique needs of every triathlete, whether training, racing or travelling,
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The P5X is Cervélo’s best, most personal triathlon bike ever. Before even entering the design phase, Cervélo conducted a full year of real world research. This included taking 14,500 photos at global triathlon events and training camps, cataloguing 4,600 bike set-ups and interviewing numerous athletes, fitters and coaches. It revealed that what triathletes really need from their bike, is individual tailoring and ease of adjustment. Results showed that only 3.8% of triathletes use what Cervélo
found to be the “most common set up”. The priorities for creating the ultimate tri bike became clear; walking away from UCI rules and guidelines, to build a bike with individual tailoring, capable of incredible speed that could also be transported seamlessly around the world thanks to easy assembly and disassembly. “It takes charge of the unique needs of triathletes first and foremost which led us to its exclusive design which we then engineered, adjusted and refined to create
Unprecedented adjustability. the fastest superbike on the road.” says Sean McDermott, Engineering Director. “With the P5X, we’ve developed multiple micro and macro adjustment possibilities and an entire range of easy to access storage products. Whether training or racing, everything that is needed has been considered and can now be securely stowed in the P5X’s exclusive Smartpak, Speedcase and Stealthbox components,” says David Killing, Senior Designer. Capable of storing up to 3 water bottles, all the nutrition needed for an Ironman, flat kit, cold weather gear and just about anything else you can think of, the P5X can carry everything you really need with no drag penalty. The P5X is available in four sizes S, M, L and XL and with two setup options. The top end model comes fitted with SRAM RED eTap system, including SRAM crank, and ENVE 7.8 wheels and will retail for AUD$14,900, while the second build is fitted with an Ultegra Di2 groupset, a Rotor crank and Hed 6.9 wheels and will set you back AUD$19,900. Available through Cervelo dealers around the country. Australian Triathlete |
Product: Cervelo P5X
15. Vertical dropouts for easy wheel install
16. Single bolt seatpost adjustment with 1. Simple seatpost-style stack
adjustment, with height markings
8. Flippable base bar for 80mm
change in drop
17. Adjustable single rear bottle mount. 2. Tilt-adjustable extension mount
9. No-trim-required fork steerer 18. Saddle clamp allows fore-aft
10. 10. Bar holster protective parking 3. Between-the-arms bottle
system for front end
adjustment from 74deg to 81deg effective seat angle
4. Pad reach adjustment range of 91mm
11. Disc brakes for consistent braking
19. Removable Speedcase on downtube
power in all conditions and new aero design
for extra storage and alternate bottle orientation
5. Pad stack adjustment range
12. Full housing cable routing for
6. One 4mm hex key to adjust both
stack and reach
20. Ultra-low standover frame
ease of assembly
21. Smartpak storage 13. Stealthbox to carry tols and flat kit 22. Stem cover hides electronic junction
7. Base bar seperates for packing
14. Thru axles front and rear for improved
| Australian Triathlete
stiffness and handling
boxes while maintaining no-tool-required access for adjustment and charging
Sunday 9 April 2017, St Kilda, Melbourne
Stunning New Course, St Kilda Australiaâ€™s Only Major Inner City Half Distance Triathlon
Early Bird Sale Ending January 20th 2017
For more information and to enter visit:
www.challengemelbourne.com.au PRESENTED BY
tech talk Road Test
Trisuits B rand 2XU has been a major player in triathlon market for a decade now and while they now produce garments to cover almost every sport imaginable, the roots of 2XU are firmly planted in the sport of triathlon. Founded back in 2005 one of the original owners, Jamie Hunt, was in fact a successful New Zealand triathlete from the ITU ranks. Over their history, 2XU have always been very proactive in the development of their triathlon range. Whether it is setting trends or responding to industry movements with their own versions, they have always been well known for the excellent cut and fit of their garments. Over the last five or six weeks we have had three of 2XU’s latest trisuits to play with and put through their paces. The GHST Trisuit, a rear zipper sleeveless top end trisuit. The Project X Trisuit, a top tier
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front zipper sleeved trisuit, and lastly the Compression Full Zipped Sleeved Trisuit, a mid level front zipper sleeved trisuit. These were all ordered in size L and we put them through their paces in temperatures from 10 degrees up to 34 degrees (on our final day). We rode in them, ran in them and swam. We trained indoors on a windtrainer and treadmill and took each garment out on the road as well. Essentially we gave them all a good flogging.
GHST Trisuit So lets get started with the GHST Trisuit. What you have here is a traditional style suit. It’s sleeveless, has a rear zip and comes in the very slimming colour of black. We didn’t even need to take this suit out of its packaging to realise that it was extremely light. In fact the material used, called ‘TriSkin’, is so light it is paper thin. It
Product Tested: 2XU Trisuits
GHST TRISUIT: A black, sleeveless, traditional style suit, with a rear zip.
literally feels like you are wearing nothing at all. The suit features a simple fleece chamois with flat lock stitching for comfort against the skin, silicone free leg gripper, again for comfort, and rear zipper with pull cord. All of these features point to this suit being an ITU specific suit, and it is, but it would also be a great suit for warmer races where a wetsuit is not allowed and short sprint and Olympic distance races. Pulling this suit on, the first thing you notice is the firm fit, 2XU are famous for their compression after all. While it is firm the suit is quite flexible and once over the shoulders and zipped up it feels great, like a second skin. A word of warning, if you are carrying a little around the waist go a size up, otherwise you could find it a bit uncomfortable through the midsection. The GHST suit has been finished with a water resistant treatment and it is dry
Reviewed by: The Test Lab Craig McKenzie and Patrick Legge are The Test Lab. Two guys with an obsession for trialling all things related to swimming, riding and running and telling anyone who will listen what they think. Having 20 years each in the sport, they’ve seen the good, the bad and the ugly, but always loved the innovation triathlon brings to the world stage. Craig raced as a professional triathlete, winning 4 National Duathlon titles, and has worked as an exercise physiologist, osteopath and coach, while Pat has built a career running a personal training, massage and coaching business, working with State, Australian and World Champions, including Australian Olympic and Commonwealth squads whilst competing himself.
@thetestlab within seconds of getting out of the water. Surprisingly it also breaths incredibly well on the bike and run, yet it moves so well with you body there is no chaffing. We found even through multiple brick efforts on the windtrainer and treadmill that the suit stayed dry and comfortable against our skin, which undoubtedly helped in with the lack of chaffing. If you feel you need a little extra breathing room on the ride or run, the pull cord easily pulls the zipper down and gives just enough relief. The interesting thing about this suit is that we found it performed really well regardless of temperature. Even though it is paper thin the GHST felt every bit as warm as either of the sleeved options when the temperature was cold, while on the final day of testing when the temperature hit 34 degrees the GHST felt as cool as any suit we have ever used. You are never going to feel comfortable racing in high heat but so long as the suit you are wearing stays dry and is breathable as opposed to one which holds the moisture and doesn’t breathe well, you are well on your way to a good performance. The GHST is without doubt one of the best trisuits we have tested and would probably be our first choice for a short course or really hot race. At $320AUD it does hit the back pocket, despite not having any of its own, but we think its well worth the investment.
Project X Trisuit Next up was the The Project X Trisuit, positioned as the leading garment for triathlons of all distances. Coming in at $400AUD, the Project X is a sleeved suit consisting of the best technology packed into the one sleek design. Comparing it to the sleeveless suit, the Projext X is comprised of heavier, sturdier materials. The similarity to the ITU/shorter course version is the great compression qualities this suit has. While not quite as snug around the mid-section the suit fits firmly where it needs to around the lower half of the body and arms, then less so around the waist and chest. Some could argue that the suit might be suitable for a non-wetsuit swim, but we think there’s
Project X TRISUIT: The leading garment for triathlons of all distances.
$400 AUD probably going to be a little too much drag when compared to lighter, more hydrophobic materials. The great lower body compression comes via what 2XU call their MCS technology, supposedly improving muscle stability and enhancing circulation. This is achieved by both the firm fitting lycra and what we would describe as a raised pattern on the inside front of the legs, that not only keeps the garment in place but provides for better moisture management. The chamois in this suit is also very different to the basic one used in the GHST. With a proprietary memory foam that’s said to provide greater support than standard foam for the perineum and sit bone regions, its definitely a better option for those longer days in the saddle. The upper body part of the suit is purpose built for long race days too, with three aero (covered) rear pockets, a mesh material at the back for better heat management and a zipper that’s
uncoupled from the lower body at the front that allows for greater movement. This certainly makes a difference when going from a bent over aero position on the bike to an upright running position. The shoulder area has a similar mesh finish which we have guessed being there to allow more range of movement through the swim. We were not sure if this was needed and may actually add to the chance of some chaffing with the extra seem. We love the longer than normal arm length with the rubberized gripper to provide maximum sun protection and that added compression, along with the really comfy neckline that feels like a soft felt. Testing this suit out was a lot of fun, given our love for sleeved suits and top notch tech. The fit of the suit was fantastic for both us, and given we have slightly different shapes this is a big win for 2XU in that the suit will cater for different body types. We initially noticed the great compression and the unusual pattern on Australian Triathlete |
tech talk Road Test
the legs as a stand out for comfort and the feeling of great support when riding hard. After several sessions we can certainly give the chamois a big thumbs up, being both more comfortable and durable than the standard ones we’ve seen before. We also really liked the ability of the suit to feel comfortable in all weather conditions, where we felt warm enough in cold conditions and cool enough in the heat. Despite the fabric used in the upper part of the suit being of greater weight than GHST suit the wicking of the material made sure we never overheated or remained wet for too long. We did note that the pockets aren’t as deep as those found on some suits, but will fit a gel in each comfortably and access to the them took a little bit of practice given they are slightly concealed. A concern that some folks have with sleeved suits is an increased risk of chaffing with the shoulders and arms covered, but fear not the suit performed really well when it got wet and hot, and dried very quickly. We didn’t spend all day biking 180km and running a marathon but there were no concerns with the extra seem at the arm and the neckline was brilliant. At this stage it only comes in the black/grey/orange colour option, but we would love to see a plain black option or even a black bottom half and white upper in the future as we think this would broaden the appeal of this suit As mentioned before it retails for $400 AUD, so it’s not a cheap suit, however like the GHST suit 2XU have really hit the mark with this suit and we would have to say it is a class leader amongst the current crop of sleeved trisuits and worth the investment.
Compression Full Zipp Sleeved Trisuit Our final suit for testing was the Compression Full Zipped Sleeved Trisuit. We could tell just from the weight in the packaging that this was going to be the heaviest of the three suits and it was noticeably heavier when on. There is a lot more paneling on this trisuit than with the GHST and Project X, so therefore quite a bit more stitching as well which adds to the feeling of a heavier suit. At first we
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Compression full zipp sleeved TRISUIT: Remains comfortable for the whole time you have it on.
$300 AUD thought maybe this was a bit over engineered with panels going off in all directions but the reality is the suit is probably the most comfortable on. The Compression Sleeved suit shares a number of design specs with the Project X such as the memory tech chamois, which as stated earlier is excellent, also the full length zip which uncouples at the bottom allowing for far less restriction when running and lastly the rear pockets, in this case only two although they are deeper than on the Project X. Now as with all sleeved trisuits we love the extra sun protection and the thing we really love about this suit is the material used mostly in the upper body, ICE X CT, has UPF 50+ UV protection and that’s a big plus. The suit itself is comprised of two materials, the above mentioned ICE X CT material which along with its UV protection is meant to give enhanced cooling, and the 105D/CK fabric which is meant to support to the muscles aiding in power and endurance. As with the GHST and Project X we were able to test this suit in a variety of sessions from the trainer and treadmill to out doors on the running track and road and in the water. We also trained from low to high temperatures with our first run being in 10 degrees.
Product Tested: 2XU Trisuits
Now first up we would say this is not a suit you would want to swim in without a wetsuit. It really holds the water and feels heavy very quickly. It also doesn’t dry quickly like the other suits. So if you are thinking of this suit, use it in races where a wetsuit is legal. The next thing we noticed with this suit is that we both heated up very quickly in it. Even though there is meant to be cooling technology it is quite a hot suit. It didn’t seem to matter whether we were in hot or cool conditions, the suit just didn’t breath as well as the suits we tested previously, and we heated up. While the Compression trisuit doesn’t have that same secure feeling of the Project X, it does remain very comfortable for the whole time you have it on. It does come in two colour options with the grey and orange suit we tested and an all black option. Overall while the Compression Full Zip Sleeved Trisuit is adequate, we get the feeling this suit is there to fill a spot for athletes who would balk at the Project X trisuit’s price point. As far as we are concerned if you have $300 to spend on a trisuit, do yourself a favour, spend $400 and get the exceptional Project X instead.
8-9 APRIL 2017
INDIVIDUAL AND RELAY TEAM ENTRIES AVAILABLE
tech talk Road Test
Product Tested: Salt Therapy
Salt Therapy The Saline Solution
t e x t b y M a n v e e n maa n | p h o t o g r a p h y b y Sa l t s o f t h e e a r t h
alt is commonly used in the recovery of muscles, so it comes as no surprise that another salt induced recovery method is all the rage. Touted as another improved recovery method, salt therapy also helps those suffering from debilitating respiratory and skin conditions, as well as those keen to aid general well being. I head down to Salts Of The Earth’s newly minted Prahran branch for the first of my sessions, eager to try out this much talked about therapy for myself. After an initial consultation with Jeylan Atkin, the owner, I’m taken through the benefits of salt therapy – and boy, that’s a big list. In a nutshell, salt therapy is a method of administering salt deep into the respiratory system, which in turn helps to
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clean out and relieve symptoms of respiratory conditions in a non-invasive way by breathing in minute salt particles. This is meant to widen the airways of the respiratory tract and loosens up mucus, helping to reduce inflammation. And how does salt do this exactly? The natural anti-inflammatory effect of salt comes from its ability to draw fluid – when you breathe in dry salt, minute particles line the airway walls drawing out the fluid from the inflamed airway, resulting in the sufferer coughing up congestion. Atkin stresses that salt therapy is not a cure or treatment, but rather a complementary therapy to relieve symptoms: “It should not replace medication altogether, however, it should be a part of an ongoing management plan.”
The Benefits There must be something to this if professional athletes, like AFL stars Luke Hodge and Nathan Jones, as well as Olympic swimmer Belinda Hocking, come in for sessions, right? The answer lies in salt therapy’s design to relieve congestion, inflammation and allergies of the airways and skin. By relieving the symptoms, medication becomes more effective resulting in better management of the condition and stronger relief. Cleaning the airways of mucus and relieving symptoms means medication can get into the airways, becoming more effective and providing stronger relief and better ongoing management. Salt therapy is available to people of all ages, and helps alleviate symptoms of asthma, bronchitis, cold & flu, pneumonia, hay fever, psoriasis, fibrosis, sinusitis, emphysema, snoring, eczema, allergies, stress and anxiety and is great for sports recovery.
I’m told the key to salt therapy is consistency. “Ideally, you would be undertaking sessions two to three times a week,” explains Atkin. As people who suffer from respiratory ailments have a condition that either inflames the lungs or produces excessive mucus, salt can only clear a certain amount at a time. Salt therapy is also said to enhance stamina, improve breathing, skin cleansing and an overall health improvement. Those suffering from skin ailments (myself included) will be pleased to hear that salt is a natural treatment for conditions such as acne, psoriasis and eczema. The salt cleanses the body and allows for better blood circulation, bringing more nutrients to all parts of the body (the skin included).
The Lowdown All Salts Of The Earth rooms are designed so that adults can take part in a group session with up to eight other people, while there are also private rooms available to maintain infection control (customers are screened prior to a session so their condition can be properly assessed). Salt therapy is perfectly safe for children and parents can relax knowing their children can enjoy the kid’s room, filled with toys, a TV, bean bags and a fish tank so kids can play without realising they are benefiting from a salt therapy
The Session Walk into any Salts Of The Earth branch, and you’re greeted with a comfortable and relaxing environment. I’m told a machine grinds up pharmaceutical grade salt to such a minute particle that it becomes airborne and is then dispersed into the salt room. You then inhale these minute particles deep down into your respiratory system. Salt particles also land on the skin and from here, the salt draws out the inflammation and cleans the surface, promoting cell rejuvenation which assists with healing. Mucus and congestion are likely to be coughed up following the session, and many people feel flu-like symptoms during this stage, however, it is only temporary. “It sometimes gets worse before it gets better!” quips Atkin.
After donning a hairnet and some booties (to prevent any contamination to the raw salt covering the grounds of the rooms), I was led into what could only be described as a wholly relaxing environment. I was greeted with massage chairs, mood lighting, and ambient music – all in a space designed to mimic a salt cave. Immediately, I felt a sense of calm wash over me and proceeded to settle into my massage chair and breathe in salt for the recommended 45-minute session. The constant hum of the massage chair and some deep, yogic breathing helped in the relaxation process and I soon found myself drifting off into a peaceful state, all while breathing in vaguely salty air. The allocated time passed quickly, and before I knew it, the lights were flicked back on and the session was over. As I exited the tranquillity of the room, I noticed that the mucus in my throat was looser, and my nasal passages seemed clearer, but I couldn’t be sure if the feeling would remain after the session itself.
me the opportunity to go for a session. I had a chest cold and decided to try it to help clear the nasal congestion. After going to the session I felt it helped in drying up the congestion,” he said. Now an avid fan, Luis includes a salt therapy session in his schedule, as part of his tapering for the race, and has seen massive improvements in his endurance. “It has helped with opening my airways and with recovering from my training sessions. I also have seen an improvement in breathing capacity and have become more aware of the benefits of salt therapy,” he said. “Your lungs are what makes you perform so keeping them healthy and in good working order, will definitely help in performing at your best.” Former AFL player, Hamish McIntosh, echoed similar sentiments. “I’ve previously played AFL for 13 years and as my body was prone to injury, I was doing whatever I could to gain an advantage in my performance and recovery. I was initially using salt therapy for the flu but found
I felt a sense of calm wash over me and proceeded to settle into my massage chair and breathe in salt for the recommended 45-minute session. — Manveen Maan
Once I hit the sack, however, I was in for the best sleep of my life. My body felt recharged and energetic, and my lifelong sinusitis difficulties seemed to have gotten a little better after just one session. As someone who has taken medication for nasal issues and skin problems my entire life, I was slightly excited by the prospect of it being quickly alleviated by simply inhaling salt. And as a member of a Gen Y workforce that’s often pressed for time, the thought of getting more energy simply by just breathing in salt was thoroughly thrilling. The next four weeks saw similar results. I was breathing better, sleeping more soundly, and had more energy than I normally would in the sun-deprived Melbourne winters. I had beaten the winter blues, one salt molecule at a time.
The Feedback As any good journalist would do, I sought out a second opinion, namely from a member of the triathlon community to see how it really impacted on training and recovery. Luis Lopez has been doing triathlons for 30 years now and concurred that the treatment helped him in his training for Ironman races. “One of my friends gave
other improvements with my health,” he said. “The older I’ve gotten, the harder it’s been for me to recover from games. The salt sessions have aided me in being able to train more on a weekly basis. The rooms are also incredibly relaxing which help me wind down from the stress and adrenaline. My recovery and sleep have all been vastly improved by salt therapy, which in turn, improves my performance and general lifestyle.” McIntosh said that with his training schedule, he always tries to attend a salt session at least once a week post-game. “My lung function and performance has improved which is especially noticeable during heavy training sessions and on game day. I can’t afford to be sick so the salt therapy has also kept my colds at bay. The therapy is great for all aspects of sporting performance, recovery and life in general.”
Salt Therapy For more information on the benefits of salt therapy, visit http:// www.saltsoftheearth.com.au/
Australian Triathlete |
tech talk Road Test
he Mizuno Wave Rider 20 is the latest edition of Mizuno’s iconic neutral runner. As you would expect with over two decades of development, there has been a lot of change since its initial outing twenty years ago. Their most popular shoe has undergone a number of changes for this iteration and they are all very effective. What remains the same are the cushioned ride and surprisingly light feel, around 270gm in a US men’s size 9 and 235gm in a women’s US 7, as well as the 12mm drop. It has always been Mizuno’s go to shoe, great for short interval runs as well as long slow runs and a great option for half and full marathons, not to mention just about any triathlon, and this edition is no different. So what are the new developments in the Wave Rider 20? Well first up is the new redesigned Cloudwave plate, according to Mizuno this improves cushioning through the shoe from heel strike to toe off. To be honest this was actually something we really noticed, both of us at The Test Lab felt this was a much more forgiving shoe, especially through the heal strike, compared with the 19 edition. The other new developments are a new U4ic foam compound for the midsole and an articulated U4icX heel wedge. Both are designed to create a much more plush ride than the previous
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model and obviously contributed to our feeling that the Wave Rider 20 is a much softer yet still very responsive shoe. Also worth noting is that the 20 feels like it is a more accommodating shoe with a slightly more natural fitting toe box and less restrictive heel cup. None of this however takes away from a firm fit but rather enhances it, making the 20 an outstanding shoe for pretty much all circumstances. In fact if you only run with one pair of shoes in your quiver the Wave Rider 20 would be a perfect choice. Although, at this stage, they only come in black but we’re sure future shipments will include colours. Although purely personal, we have never been big fans of black shoes as they tend to look heavy even if they are not. The 20’s however do come with a very cool reflective material in the mesh around the side and heel, which light up like a beacon whenever a light is shone upon them, so that’s a plus in for night safety. Well then, how do they feel when you finally get out on the track? It’s always hard to put into words, but just about the best compliment we could give is that by the end of our first run we had forgotten we were even using new shoes. Personally, I put them on and ran in them within 30 minutes of receiving the box. I took off with my wife, and pram, for the 5km round trip to collect my daughter from childcare.
Product Tested: Mizuno Wave Rider 20 Runners
The first thing to notice was that feeling of running on soft clouds that you get with most new shoes but then its what you don’t notice that really impressed. No rubbing in uncomfortable places, no hot spots, no slipping and, although I tend to prefer 7-8mm drop, no noticeable heel strike. And as I said by the time I got home I had forgotten that I was even wearing a completely new pair of shoes. Subsequent runs of varying distances from 5km to 15km, and sessions from fartlek to long slow have left us feeling that these shoes are the perfect all rounder. Lightweight enough to do a speed session in and supportive and cushioned enough to allow you to run long. Running shoe brands have really stepped up in the last year or two, with new technology aimed at making shoes both fit and perform better rather than look prettier and Mizuno is no different. They have hit the mark with the Wave Rider 20 and it will help cement the already great reputation of this shoe.
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tech talk save/spend/splurge Save
Product: Swimming Goggles
Eyeline Stellar Eyeline Stellar Swim Goggles-Polycarbonate anti-fog lens with UV Protection. Soft silicone seals. Split silicone headband. Fixed length replaceable nose bridge (extra sizes included) Designed for youth, medium & adult facial structures.
VORGEE Missile Mirrored Senior Swim Goggles Liquid soft silicone eye seals keep you comfortable and prevent any water leakage while 4 Interchangeable nose bridges allow you to customise your fit. The Shatter resistant lenses also feature an Anti-fog coating to keep you swimming fog-free for as long as you can. Mirrored Lenses suit bright, high light conditions; they reflect the light away from your eyes. The mirror effect is also used in competitive swimming so that opponents canâ€™t see your eyes. Ideal for outdoor swimming, or in competitions. www.rebelsport.com.au
TYR Special OPS 2.0 Small Polarized Goggles TYR #1 all-around goggle, the Special Ops is engineered for triathlon, open water and training. Constructed with polarized lenses, the LGSPS latex free performance goggle provides clarity, optical precision and comfort by filtering out 99.9% of the surface glare that causes eye fatigue. This racing goggle has durable, hypoallergenic DURAFIT silicone gaskets that provide a comfortable, watertight seal and maintain their shape over time. Featuring a smaller size, embedded anti-fog, and a wide peripheral range for optimal sighting, these competition goggles are sure to meet the demands of a serious swimmer.
Orca Killa Black A low-profile goggle that will provide minimum drag and drag and maximum performance -- MATERIALS: Silicone strap, Polycarbonate lens. -- TECHNICAL: Low-profile mirrored polycarbonate lens with UV protection and anti-fog vision. -- SECURE: Race-style silicone headstrap and quick side adjustment make this an easy fit.
MP Xceed Michael PhelpsTitanium Mirror Goggle Designed with an expanded field of vision, these swim goggles allow the swimmer to sight walls and the competition without altering their head position FINA Approved www.aquashop.com.au
Speedo Fastskin Prime Mirror Fastskin Prime is a brand new propositon. Fully customisable, each Fastskin Prime goggle pack contains all of the elements required to produce up to 16 colour combinations.The latest additon to the IQ Fit family, Fastskin Prime uses the most advanced technology avalaible, to ensure a leak free* secure fit, and a hydrodynmaic design profile for maximum speed through the water. www.speedo.com.au
Australian Triathlete |
M US I N GS The Real Deal t e x t b y Si r i l i n d l e y | I M A GE S SUPPL I ED
here your focus goes, your energy flows” - this is one of the most powerful things the outstanding Tony Robbins has taught me. Focus on what you don’t want, and you will get it. Focus on what you do want, and you will receive it! Concentrate on the parts of yourself that you don’t admire or are even ashamed about, and those are the qualities that will shine through. Focus on what you like about yourself and carry this with you every second of the day, and everything you do will be done with passion, confidence and strength! Let’s take the simple example of descending on your bike. The number one piece of advice I give athletes is this: “When you get to a sharp corner focus on where you want to go, not on where you don’t want to go.” If you are thinking – “I don’t want to hit the kerb”, “I don’t want to hit the kerb”, “I don’t want to hit the kerb!” trust me, you will hit the kerb - especially due to the fact you are looking right at it! A bigger example: Think of what you feel, when you close your eyes and think about your upcoming race. Think about feeling crappy and weak, about having a bad swim start and getting pummeled, and every stroke feeling like you are working through quicksand. Think about your legs on the bike and run feeling like tree trunks. Think about shallow breath, and struggling for air. How does this make you feel in your body? Strong
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Siri Lindley A world champion athlete herself and now one of the most revered triathlon coaches in the world, Siri enables athletes to become the champions and the people they were born to be. With an ability to see things in people they cannot see in themselves, Siri is driven by a unrivalled passion for triathlon and the people within. http://siri-lindley.com
Siri Lindley and powerful? Probably not. Anxious, fearful and weak - YES! The key here is to quickly change your state of mind and think instead of feeling powerful, strong, feeling smooth. Focus on the rhythm of your breath. Focus on the joy you feel when participating in your favourite sport. Think about the gratitude you feel to have the ability and opportunity to use your body, to achieve the great challenge of triathlon. Think about the passion you feel for pushing yourself to the limit and reaching your utmost capabilities. Now, how does that make you feel? Strong, energised, positive! Motivated and free! When we focus on what is real, focus on ourselves, the real deal of who we are, we become so much more powerful. We become much better able to tap into all our potential. Your fears and insecurities - that isn’t who you are in your essence. You are a living, breathing force of nature. You have been put on this earth to be all that you can be! You are here to transcend all the limits your mind has imposed upon you. You are here with the free will to do what you love - to focus your energy where you want it to be. You are here to explore this amazing world through your senses and feel the gift of being alive! Our fears are just beliefs - beliefs that come from all that we have learned growing up. You can never rid yourself of fear. I believe that fear is necessary.
It drives us forward - it keeps us searching for more. It keeps us growing. But we must learn not to be paralysed by fear and instead dance with it. Have it fuel your fire, but don’t give it a hold on you - you have the hold on it. Fear before a race is just excitement. Are you afraid you will fail? Are you scared you won’t live up to your potential? Are you afraid of the pain you will go through to get to that finish line? Fine! Dance with that fear. We now know what is important to you. You want to be the best that you can be. You want to push yourself beyond what you think you are capable of. You know that it will hurt, but you also know how strong you are. You know you are up for the challenge - up for the challenge to dance with that discomfort. Knowing that when it gets uncomfortable, and you push through that pain, you are reaching a whole new level. You are going beyond what you think is possible - you are stepping into the territory that brings you closer to achieving your dream. We must get uncomfortable to reach new levels of performance. We must step into the unknown with excitement, not fear. With belief, not doubt. Those “failures” or “disappointments” you dwell on from the past - well, let me tell you this, those are the things that helped you grow the most. Those are the things that are ultimately the steppingstones to you being all that you can be,
Be the real deal every single day, and your perception of life will constantly be a celebration. — Siri Lindley
in your entire splendour! Without those failures, we would become stagnant. We would lack the motivation to learn, to grow, to improve - to find more within ourselves. Your failures don’t define you. Your failures propel you to a greater state, a greater you! Think about the miracle of life that you are. Think about how amazing you are that you wake up every single day and work your body - celebrate your body and train yourself towards all new levels of performance. Think about how you, not only put this great focus on being the best that you can be physically but also put that same time into being the best father, mother, sister, brother, doggie-parent, cat-parent and more. Think about what you are passionate about. What drives you? What makes you happy? What brings out the best in you? Think about your greatest qualities and think about the joy you bring into the lives around you. Focus on your true essence. Celebrate that! Focus on that! Trust me -your world will change. Your experience of life will change. Be the real deal every single day, and your perception of life will constantly be a celebration. That kind of energy produces the results we all dream of! Shine on! Siri Australian Triathlete |
The 2016 Yearbook
nother year has come to a close. Another year donning Lycra and exercising for, hopefully, monetary remuneration in various far flung locals around the world. As has become my wont, it’s a time of year typified by reflection and nostalgia on the year gone. Thus, it’s time for another ‘Words with Willy Yearbook the 2016 edition’. The Hiccups The Injuries: Achilles surgery, broken arm, calcaneus stress fracture The Rehabs: Crutches and a cast, sling and a wind trainer, boot and a pint
The Travel Countries Travelled: 10 Months Abroad: Four Time of final flight back home: 16hours 30minutes Mental status during aforementioned 16hours 30minutes: Questionable Body odour of passenger next to me during aforementioned 16hours 30minutes: Severely questionable The Racing Best Race: Noosa. Finally some payback for 18 months of unwavering hard work, that had largely gone unrewarded up until this race. My running legs were finally back, for my first complete race since injury. It made it sweeter bludgeoning the rest of the field on the swim and bike with good mate Josh Amberger. Worst Race: Stockholm WTS [World Triathlon Series]. Well, 2/3 of it were great, but running 10km hard for the first time in 12 months was painful. And slow. Lucky they get sunlight until very late in the Summer in Sweden… Best Swim: Stockholm WTS. It wasn’t so much of a swim, as a body surf on the bow wave of Raul Shaw for the whole swim, to come out third. Anyone who doesn’t acknowledge you need a bit of luck to get through a WTS swim has probably never swum in one. Definitely, owe Raul a drink.
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Best Bike: Alpe d’Huez. After gratuitous pre-race smack talk with my training squad, this was a win-or-probably-haveto-retire-to-save-humiliation scenario for me. Thankfully, the legs played ball that day, and I was safe to return to continue banter with the long-suffering squad… Best Run: Hamburg. By no means the fastest run I’ve ever done, or anywhere near a great result. However, having run so little at the start of the year, and getting so thrashed in my first few races, this was the first time in around 12 months where running felt familiar and fluid, rather than a weird, bipedal form of transport. Coldest Race: Edmonton WTS. OMG! I make it a rule never to train if the ambient temperature is suitable for storing dairy. I had to break that rule in Edmonton. Given how long it took me to put on my running shoes, I’ll never take my metacarpal dexterity for granted again. Hottest Race: Cozumel WTS. Again, OMG! Having come straight from Edmonton, it was a brutal juxtaposition. I’ve always been dismissive when the TV chefs tell you to rest your meat at room temperature out of the fridge before cooking it on the grill, to prevent “shocking” the meat with a sudden change in temperature. But by my second day in Cozumel, I began to realise what they meant, and swore never to inflict such punishment on a pork chop again! The Training Longest Swim Set: 10km. A St. Peter’s sludgefest on a Saturday morning, during a non-running period due to one of the aforementioned ailments - I can’t recall which one. The last 2km was on a 1:15 cycle, followed by a rapid exit from the pool, amid vociferous exclamations of “never again!” Longest Bike: A 214km, solo, Brisbane-toGympie ride, featuring a delightful brunch in Kenilworth with my fiancé. This was also during a non-running period due to an ailment. Ailments lend themselves to
Dan Wilson seeking self-regulation through extreme sessions focussing on the disciplines of which you are currently able. I don’t usually do sessions like this - I’m not a psycho. Longest Run before June: 0km - apart from work on the Alter G treadmill. For those of you who don’t know what an Alter G treadmill is, you basically float/run like you’re on the moon while wearing a tutu for support - sweat absolutely everywhere, while you look at yourself in the mirror and think “how did it come to this?” Longest Run after June: 18km - it was a slow build back up. This session came after I bumped into Ryan Fisher in a moment of pure serendipity at the University of Queensland. We joined forces for an impromptu main set when we both dearly needed a comrade in arms to get our fatigued escape sticks up to a decent pace. The non-Triathlon Related The Academic: After 18 months of work, I finally submitted all 133 pages of my thesis for my Honours Psychology degree, three days before Noosa, perhaps in part explaining why I felt a little lighter during the race. My proudest moment as an academic and proof (kids, listen up!), that it’s possible to juggle both athletic and academic careers. The Romantic: In easily the biggest highlight of the year, and my life, I proposed to the love of my life in October. She said yes! Actually, at first, she said, “I wasn’t expecting that!” (Got her!), and then she said yes. I used to think that I got nervous before triathlons, but my preproposal nerves have radially adjusted my scale of just how nervous it is possible for one to be… Hope you have all had a good year, here’s to another good one this year!
Take care friends, Willy
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Bitten by the Radioactive Tri Spider
f you could possess one superpower what would it be?” A frequently asked question amongst school aged kids, and, I am almost certain, a discreetly pondered question in the minds of most adults - one that can spawn some imaginative and vastly creative answers. In our current culture, you’d be hard pressed to go about your day without being exposed to a character or concept that demonstrates an individual with abilities astoundingly superior to an average human being. There has always been a fascination with more powerful beings: divine idols, evolved men and women and even grander humanoids from other worlds with power that belittle our own. It’s fun to daydream about the ability to fly or the ability to converse with your French bulldog, and explain to him that it is, in fact, him that is the “good boy”. But I would like to propose a slightly more realistic and triathlon related question: “If you could possess one humanly possible power, that could make you a better triathlete, what would that be?” See, in this day and age, the term “hero” is bandied about quite frivolously. Of course, in pop culture and entertainment, there are the fictional heroes who are super powered, while also humble, run of
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the mill mortals. In the news, heroes make a positive change to the life of others by saving lives in countless ways or even just improving other people’s lives through good nature. Unsung heroes will go about their good deeds daily for whatever reason compels them to do so. Heroes are a beacon of positivity and good hope in what
can sometimes be a difficult world – heroes exist in triathlon too. I hope when you read that last line, as a triathlete, an individual springs instantly to your mind, and that the thought of this person brings you a warm feeling and puts a silly grin on your face. I also hope when you realise this you look around to see if
Brendan Sexton As a youngster, Brendan’s life ambition was to be the fifth Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle. That didn’t quite pan out. But triathlon did. A decade on, he’s still at it. www.brendansexton.com.au @kung_fu_sexton
anyone has noticed, but that’s because I continually do this as I type! If the words “triathlon” and “hero” do not instantly conjure the thought of one or more particular people, then fear not and read on. I hold little doubt that by the end of this piece you will understand just how well these two words can be associated with so many amazing individuals. “Sporting Heroes” is a misleading label. I feel this label initially presents thoughts of extremely successful athletes in high profile sports, and in many respects the individuals’ who are being named as such, are just that. But I argue that within the bracket of “sporting hero” there are so many individuals who may never stand on a medal dais, who will never score a winning goal or break the tape across a finish line. Having been involved in sport from a young age right through to the elite international level, I’ve had the pleasure to meet both the champion athlete heroes, as well as the heroes we all could be enjoying the company of every day. When I ask the “triathlon power” question I assume many triathletes would immediately run through a list of that appears something along the lines of - swim like a dolphin, push pedals like a V8 engine, run like there’s no gravity, to not get injured, to not fatigue, etc. Then they would choose the one physical attribute that would give them the better overall finish time or allow them to make it through a certain race or maybe even the ability knock that brash training partner off their pedestal. And fair enough! Having raced at the top of our sport against some of the greatest all round triathletes in our sports history, I can guarantee there are guys and girls who, to most, seem flawless but would love to rid themselves of their small (but, to them, substantial) physical weaknesses. Funnily enough many of these top tier triathletes I could describe as heroes. But it’s not due to their supreme and awe-inspiring physicality that I attach
such a label to them. Many top level athletes, in all sports, have skills and abilities that they were born with - natural traits that allow them to jump higher, throw further, swim, ride and run faster. In short, not everyone can be a Jan Frodeno, a Chrissie Wellington or a Javier Gomez, but every individual has the ability within him or her to be a hero. If you could possess one humanly possible power that may make you a better triathlete what would that be? I ask you the same question again, but this time read the words carefully – “Humanly”. To click one’s fingers or ask a blue ponytailed genie - or mid-drifted 70’s sitcom blonde, as your preference may fall - and expect an instantaneous and miraculous enhancement of one’s physical abilities doesn’t strike me as exactly “humanly”. What I believe to be a considerable, realistic and enhancing change that is within human capacity is a change within the mind. Sporting heroes aren’t born the way they are - they’ve chosen to be courageous, selfless, driven, focused, humble, thoughtful, grounded, proud and generous. Are there any mental traits in this list that you feel you could improve? Do you think slightly heightening your attention to one or more of these approaches in training and racing could potentially increase your performance and enjoyment at the end of each day? From my experience, it is exactly these adjectives and many other hero-esque traits that have been taken on by naturally skilled athletes, of whom there are numerous, and produced the best athletes in the world, who are in much rarer number.
Heroes exist in triathlon, and I am very fortunate to be exposed to my triathlon heroes daily. My triathlon heroes inspire me with their determination and resilience, they enthuse me with their infectious positivity and guide me with unyielding sanguine perspective. My heroes are the athletes who have been to dark places earlier in their lives and have found a brighter place in triathlon - unique characters that have used triathlon as part of a positive about-face. They are people who comprehend the massive benefits of triathlon, and sport in general and do whatever they can to thrust that same effect in the direction of others. Fellow athletes, organisers, behind-the-scenes volunteers, sideline supporters and quiet confidence prodders - the heroes in our sport come in many forms and contribute in a variety of ways. Their common denominator is that they always affect other people for the better, and it’s always due to their attitude – the way they approach this sport and this life. We all have the ability to become better athletes, without the aid of super powers. I hope you can now pull to mind someone you consider a triathlon hero and consider what traits they have that contribute to their attitude. Is it an unwavering focus? Is it a sense of professionalism or a strong commitment, or selflessness, or perpetual optimism? Whatever it is that your hero embodies, take a piece of that. Follow your hero and absorb their “powers”. In triathlon, every athlete has heroic potential. We may not be superhuman, but let’s face it, we’re all pretty super!
We all have the ability to become better athletes, without the aid of — Brendan Sexton super powers. Australian Triathlete |
CrossTraining Tips text by jodie swallow | photography by shutterstock.com
e all know it what it’s like. It begins with that familiar mixture of denial and reality. You know you shouldn’t attempt to go for your run. You harbor a persevering hope that it will clear by the morning and when it doesn’t, you reluctantly label that niggle, “an injury”. The change of noun means a lot. Suddenly you’re ‘injured’. It’s a definite and jarring word. We don’t want to be injured. We will do anything not to be injured. Anything that is, except rest. We will do anything not to be injured except what we actually need to do. Injury makes us make decisions that are completely contradictory but bizarrely coherent in our minds. Desperation it takes away reason. Injury can feel like the potential loss of a career for a professional athlete but can be equally as devastating for a die-hard amateur. Endurance sport is rarely just a hobby. It becomes a vehicle to manage emotion - it acts as a platform to achieve goals and as a tool to carve a person’s identity.
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When triathlon is forcibly removed from an athlete’s life, it can leave their soul malnourished. In the early part of my career, I was plagued by injury. I believe these injuries were self-induced, not purposely of course, but as a result of the actions I took in response to an eating disorder - Bulimia Nervosa. Bulimia Nervosa may not be as outwardly catabolic to the body as it’s cousin - Anorexia Nervosa, but it’s equally as threatening to the working body. During 2000-2007 I suffered a stress fracture every year. Adopting blame makes injury no easier to deal with. Nobody directly chooses to damage themselves into submission- it is a mental disorder. One would never beat oneself up about having dysfunctioning hips, a sore shoulder or being hit by a car and breaking a bone. I, to this day, beat myself up for the wasted years of my beloved triathlon career. Self-blame made me feel worse about my injuries. It made me do more of everything there possibly was not to be injured everything but stop throwing up.
Anyway, I diverge. The point is that I have much practice in being injured. I understand the injury mindset, and it’s contradictions better than most. I was probably one of the best examples of how to do it wrong in sport for a long period of time. What my condition allowed me was experience. Now, along with perspective, I am pretty good at understanding rehab and cross training - what works, what doesn’t work, the pitfalls vs. the benefits of methods and the best way to approach a layoff.
Aqua Jogging - 4/10 Some claim that aqua jogging is a brilliant tool for maintaining fitness for running, even for long periods of time. Personally I have found it to work only for a few weeks - when a niggle persists and needs rest from impact. After this time I seem to lose my adaptation to eccentric loading and that then becomes the limiting factor in maintaining my run fitness and not the cardiovascular component that aqua jogging can help maintain. Swimming and cycling are good aerobic stimulators but it is the loading that you can’t replicate and it is that, which you need. Aqua jogging is pretty boring. I always felt depressed going to the pool to “run”. It’s such an obvious declaration of disablement. I used to do hard workouts to get my heart rate up to 160bpm, which is pretty hard to hold for any length of time in the pool. It could have been endurable if I had trusted that aqua jogging was legitimately helping me to keep run fit but, to me, it just felt totally disengaged from real running.
Shallow Water Running (waterline to pelvis) 7/10 I like shallow water running and occasionally still do it. It does, however, have some impact to it. I use shallow
Jodie Swallow Jodie Swallow is a world champion, Ironman champion and Olympian. Not one to shy away from an uncomfortable but necessary conversation, Jodie Swallow is guaranteed to keep you thinking. Follow her at www.ifollowtheswallow.co.uk
Jodie Swallow water running as the measure of whether I should be even trying to cross-train. If the injury is mild enough to be pain-free running in shallow water, then the exercise itself is worth doing because time away from solid ground is likely to be short. You can keep motivation for a few weeks and get a little eccentric muscle stimulation.
Underwater Treadmill Running 8/10 A progression on from shallow water running is the development of underwater treadmills. They help to combat the difficulties that slippery pool bottoms and the plodding mentality that inevitably occurs when trying to run in water (water
Judge the type of injury you have suffered, why you have suffered it and whether impact and repetitive action will — Jodie Swallow make it worse.
resistance slows the limbs down) bring. Treadmills can make a session more specific to real running and allocate pace and intensity much more effectively. As long as the pain is not ignored and expectations are realistic, treadmills are good cross training tools. Alistair Brownlee allegedly has one in his back garden, and he is not someone who buys into fad training easily.
The Cross trainer 6/10 Cross trainers are good for burning calories and people in gyms like them a lot because they are low impact. That probably makes them closer to cycling than to running. I used to have the ability to spend hours on cross trainers, now I struggle to do an hour. I am trying to figure this out - I think it is that I have realised that they are quite a good apparatus for feeding the belief that you are not going to get heavier because you are not running. They also take up the “worry time” you are presented with when a sport is taken out of your usual triathlon program. Neither reason really helps their case in this article. Once I discovered that it is diet, not really exercise, that governs weight management and that it is possible to adapt a swim/bike/run program into a decently tough swim/bike one, I think I moved on from cross trainers.
Gym Rehab 3/10 — Prehab 10/10
Injured: Training whilst having an injury doesn’t have to mean stopping altogether. There are plenty of alternatives to maintain fitness.
Gym rehab is a controversial one let me explain. When you are injured physiotherapists will investigate why. With me, they would discover that my hip flexors were tight because my glutes were weak. They would then send me to the gym. It wasn’t just me on “bums and tums” - sprinters, cyclists and marathoners were all on it. I have a flat bum and am clearly quad dominant. I accept my glutes are weak, but I did and Australian Triathlete |
Jodie Swallow Medical Treatment: Be sensible, and informed before you choose to trust any expert in any field.
do question if the glutes of the sprinter (who has a bum that birds would happily land on) were inadequate. It goes against logic that any muscle you use regularly should become inadequately weak if the movement is correct. Correct action surely makes muscles stronger. Because I would do anything to stop being injured, I would work hard on my “weak” muscles. They would ache and become really tight. I’m not sure that helps when you’re trying to run - to have tight hip flexors coupled with tight glutes. My hypothesis is this - “Strength work on dysfunction will only exacerbate the condition. Once the injury is suffered, it is too late to do much strength work to prevent it”. Gym work is a long-term process and has a higher place in injury prevention rather than injury reaction.
triathlon and improve as triathletes. Nicola Spirig is a shining example of this. Nicola, Felicity Abraham, and I, were injured to similar severity at a camp in 2011. But only one of us improved that year and returned from injury better than before. Our injuries differed and our treatment from the coach was different too, but Nicola definitely limited her attempt at running rehab more than Flick and me, and she piled her energy into swimming. Swimming was her weakness and Nicola made the most of the time she could not run by swimming more. I think she knocked around three seconds off her 100m threshold times in that period. This is my favourite plan for an injury reaction program. Work on the other two sports if they are your weaknesses. It takes mental strength but demonstrates better perception and long-term vision of injury than any other method I have seen.
Cycle/Swim Supplementation 9/10
This is a sore point with me because I spent years doing it and I still don’t think I made the most of it. I have seen athletes use a forced layoff from running, to allocate time and energy to the other parts of
There are obviously numerous and ever developing avenues for injury treatment, and they are very specific to individual situations, injuries and doctors. The only advice I can give in regards to these is that
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each intervention should be considered unemotionally and expertly. This can be difficult in the midst of “injury brain” and panic. Be sensible, and informed before you choose to trust any expert in any field. It is, of course, easier to write, “have good judgement, be sensible and rational” than to actually live it. The chase back to fitness is everything in sport because the nature of the beast is measured in time and limited opportunity. You can’t move the date of an Olympic games. There is a time and a place for cross training when you are injured. Judge the type of injury you have suffered, why you have suffered it and whether impact and repetitive action will make it worse. It is better to be less fit at the end of a four-week layoff but ready to go than to prolong an injury for months because you will not rest. Find a mentor, somebody to help you see objectively. Use them and trust them and hopefully injury layoff will become quicker, less frequent and more tolerable.
Disclaimer: My opinions are obviously just that. I have a sports science degree from Loughborough University, but its teachings are not found in this article. I have a 24-year career in international sport, 16 in elite triathlon that I’m pretty proud of, especially because of my recovery from the many errors I made for much of it. If I had figured out all my wrongs earlier, I’d have had a whole different life. That’s a story for another time.
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Ramp It Down Running shoe ramp height and its effects on performance
igher heels have been around for centuries, initially with the intended function of stopping horse riders feet from slipping out of their stirrups. Then, in some cultures, it became the fashion. Flat, or nearly flat, running shoes were the norm until the 1970’s when distance running took off in popularity and suddenly there was money to be made with new technology. Footwear engineering geniuses decided that 2100 million years of evolution got it wrong and that it would be far more beneficial for runners to have more cushioning below the heel as compared to the forefoot. As a result, the average running heel-to-forefoot height (the “ramp height” or “drop”) is reportedly 12mm. For a sedentary person who might run once a week for 20-30 minutes, perhaps this could be beneficial as there is good chance that they might be heavier from a typical modern Western lifestyle and they might not have conditioned their muscles to the rigors of running. A big wedge of cushioning underneath their heel might prevent them from injury. Although doing an, albeit brief, Internet search, I couldn’t find any real evidence that this has ever been the case. For the majority, I can’t see how a significant ramp height could be beneficial to learning how to run properly or to eventually allowing an athlete to reach their running potential. N.B.: I do mention later in the article when ramp height could be useful for serious triathletes or ultra runners, but I’ll get to that after this initial rant.
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t e x t b y Tim r e e d | photography by shutterstock
Following are the problems with a higher ramp height, as I see them: -- Throw significantly more cushioning under the heel compared to the forefoot and instinctively, or perhaps because there is no choice, runners will use it. Most athletes increase their heel strike action and begin over-striding further out in front of their body
because the cushioning takes away the pain and degree of impact that would happen without the extra heel cushioning. But this is an inefficient way to run and places a lot of extra stress on your hips, knees and ankles. Some people will argue that some great distance runners heel strike and they would be correct. It’s my understanding that a heel strike is not necessarily problematic provided the strike is still relatively underneath the weight of the body. It’s the over-striding that is the problem, not necessarily whether the initial contact is on the heel or more mid-foot. When you’re watching a great distance runner heel striking slow down the video as much as possible, and you will likely see their heel hit first, but their leg speed is such that the majority of their body weight comes onto the mid-foot - such is the speed in which the foot moves under the body.
Training TOOLBOX Performance
-- Even if you try and run correctly in a shoe with a large ramp height, it’s almost impossible to strike where you naturally would because the heel gets in the way. -- A lot of downhill running can contribute to injuries. Wearing shoes with a large ramp height leaves you effectively running down hill even when you’re running on the flat!
A large ramp height means you’re missing out on some of your Achilles and calf muscle propulsion potentials.
I’m not a fanatical barefoot or anti-cushioning advocate, by any means. While I think there are benefits to be gained by incorporating occasional minimal footwear into regular run training, the surface on which most of us urban dwellers run is very different to what we
evolved to run on - footpaths and roads are a far cry from forest floors. Also, I’m not against structured shoes designed to help athletes with biomechanical deficiencies that would otherwise lead to injury without the provided support. However, I do believe it would be beneficial for most athletes to lower the ramp height of their shoes for much of their run training. The biggest issue with lowering the ramp height is that most of us have chronically Australian Triathlete |
Training TOOLBOX Performance Shoe Type
My training use
My racing use
Track Racing Flat
General casual wear. I like doing day-to-day things in shoes with 0mm drop to allow my feet to be in their natural position. I also typically do one run per week mainly on trails in this shoe, primarily for strengthening and improved technique. My general rule to avoid injury in such a minimal shoe is athletes should run a minimum of 2 minutes per km slower than race pace.
I don’t race track so don’t race in this shoe.
Road race running flat. A suitable shoe for most people to race a half marathon or less.
I do a lot of my longer, slower, aerobic endurance/ base building runs in this shoe. It’s got some cushioning but not enough that I can ever really switch off and start to run sloppily.
Sprint, Olympic Distance Triathlons 70.3 Distance events with a relatively flat run course profile.
Road racing and as a lightweight trainer
One of the most popular triathlon shoes because of its level of cushioning despite a very low weight. I use these shoes for a bit of everything but typically for longer runs with tempo intervals.
70.3 and Ironman distance events.
Slightly more cushioning and durability than the Kinvara at the cost of slightly increased weight. I do a lot of my speed work in this shoe, especially if the run is on cement or road.
Ironman Distance Events
Heavier duty neutral trainer.
Very cushioned trainer moving towards a more traditional ramp height. I bring out the triumph when I’ve been doing a lot of running, and my calves and Achilles are a little flared up, but still want to get through some speed work.
Ironman Distance Events if I hadn’t done the appropriate mileage to withstand the rigours of a marathon or if it was a very hilly course.
awareness: Injuries and strains can result from poor choices in the drop/ramp height.
shortened our range of motion in the posterior chain down our lower leg from years of wearing shoes with a significant ramp height. Therefore, jumping into shoes with a heel-to-forefoot drop of 0mm, 4mm or even 8mm could lead to a serious calf or Achilles injury, especially if you’re suddenly switching from a traditional drop of 12mm. I can’t emphasise enough how gradual the process has to be. I would recommend finding out what the current ramp height
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of your shoe is and incorporating a shoe that has a ramp height no more than 2mm lower at a time. Incorporate this shoe into your run training gradually and initially only during slower runs. Gradually increase the frequency of training in this shoe. Once you have got through months of training at the lower drop without issue, I would then move to a shoe that is another 2mm lower. As mentioned at the beginning of this article, there might be a time that serious triathletes or ultra runners would want to include a bigger drop to a beneficial effect. That place would be during an Ironman or Ultra running race where a heel strike and the extra cushioning can help save that glass-in-the-quadriceps feeling that can slow your progress in a run of extended duration. I typically only recommend this if the athlete has been unable to do the adequate mileage required to make the legs resilient enough for the impending impact, so as not to affect their marathon. However, I still don’t recommend that athletes do too much training in this shoe except for a few key sessions leading up to the race to make sure they are comfortable to run in. To give you some context on how I use cushioning and ramp height, in my training, I’ve included the above table. Obviously, Saucony is one of my sponsors, but I was running in Saucony long before they sponsored me because I love that
they have a range of options for lower ramp heights. Also, all the shoes above are neutral to match my foot type. However, the cushioning and ramp height is of most relevance to readers as the general principles can be applied to other brands with similar options. As you can see from the table above, I tend to do the opposite to what most brands, coaches and athletes would recommend. The slower the run, the more minimal the shoe is that I wear. During a slower run, I focus on technique and using my muscles to cushion the impact of each foot strike. When the aim is to condition my cardiovascular system, which I do with very fast running, I then move to a more cushioned runner to avoid injury and avoid excessive muscular damage.
Multiple Trainers While the initial investment might seem high to have multiple pairs of running shoes, the total cost shouldn’t be that different compared to if you only run in one pair of shoes, which you would need to replace when they become worn out. If you invest in multiple pairs of runners, that one pair of shoes will wear out a lot more slowly given you’re rotating through different shoes. If you can, I highly recommend bringing a range of shoes into the training protocol and ever so slowly, lowering your shoe ramp height to a more natural range.
Bio Name Descriptive text of the athlete or coach to be placed hear.
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The Performance Edge Exploring Key Services text by Margaret Mielczarek
o get that performance edge, triathletes will often buy the latest gear - the latest Garmin, the newest TT bike or the latest running shoes. It’s an investment, right? Sound familiar? However, it’s not always as often that athletes will invest in themselves and their engines. But what’s the point of having the latest gear if your engine fails you? Three key Allied Health providers gave their expert opinions on how these services benefit athletes and why they are worth investing in.
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Nutrition – don’t overlook your fuel
Katherine Shone, an advanced sports dietitian, divides her time between Olympic Park Sports Medicine Centre and South Yarra Spine and Sports Medicine Centre in Melbourne. She has a strong personal and professional background in endurance sports and endurance sports nutrition.
On a personalised and periodised approach to nutrition KS: With most athletes, their nutrition has to be like their training program - it has to
be personal and periodised. In the early phases of training, we will look at adequate energy availability and talk about nutrition for immune function to keep them well. We will also talk about the timing of recovery nutrition. When we move into a more race specific phase, which is usually 12 - 14 weeks out from a race for most triathletes, this is where we do hydration testing with athletes. From there we can formulate how much fluid they need to be drinking on the bike and run. We will also do some careful planning and practice around carbohydrate intake and hydration during the race. In the race specific phase, it is also really important that athletes practice what they are going to eat and drink in the days leading up to the event. We will do a mock carbohydrate load before a practice race, so that they try out all aspects of the race day nutrition and hydration plan (including the carbohydrate loading plan), to see what works well and if there are tweaks that need to be made before the key race.
Training TOOLBOX Body Maintenance
On the use of sports supplements and ergogenic aids KS: Supplements can be a convenient and useful tool for some athletes. But because there are so many supplements available that are being spruiked as critical for an athlete’s development and performance, it is really important that athletes use supplements that have scientifically proven benefits. Otherwise, they are just wasting their money. It is also important that athletes seek out reputable brands and use supplements that are safe. With the emergence of increased testing through ASADA and WADA, we are getting more positive drug test samples coming through. So it is important that athletes research and work with their sports dietitian to ensure that the supplements they are taking have scientific backing and are safe. There is a lot of research to support the use of ergogenic aids. For example, there is some strong research to support caffeine intake for both increased cognitive function and reduced perceived effort. The clincher with caffeine is that beyond a certain amount it can actually be detrimental to performance. On seeking nutrition advice from coaches and other athletes KS: I think it is really important, just like I would never proclaim to be able to write a training program for an athlete, as I’m not a coach, to note that the best place for athletes to seek nutrition advice is from an accredited sports dietitian. Accredited sports dietitians have gone through the training at university as well as further study, to give them the skills and knowledge to be able to work with athletes and to give them scientifically backed and supported nutrition support. It is important not to blur the line. The coach is there to write the training program and tweak it accordingly. The sports dietitian is there to help tweak and moderate the nutrition program and to periodise it according to the training program.
Physiotherapy – not just for injury management
Cara Mura and Paul Wiedersehn are experienced physiotherapists working at BaiMed Physiotherapy and Sports Injury Clinic in NSW, both with a significant personal and professional background in endurance sport. On the benefits of seeing a physiotherapist CM&PW: Most athletes will wait until they are injured before seeing a physio. However often by this stage, the damage is done and poor habits have been adopted that are hard to break. As physios, if we can prevent an injury then we are of more use to the athlete. Many people use the term ‘screening’ in regards to injury prevention and performance enhancement. This is the greatest tool that we have as physios and we believe that this can make the biggest impact on an individual’s performance. Screening includes bike fits,
running and swimming assessments, and range of motion and strength assessments. Combined, these help physios gain an understanding of what each athlete’s strengths and weaknesses are, to ultimately help them get the most out of themselves. There is tremendous benefit from seeing a physio for screening assessments. Not only will it help prevent injury but will also improve technique, which will make athletes stronger and more efficient. On injuries – common causes, prevention and management CM&PW: Injury comes down to an athlete’s load being greater than their capacity, which is the amount the body can tolerate. The issue with triathlon is the high training load required. This often exceeds an athlete’s capacity. However, instead of spending time trying to improve their capacity through stretching, mobility and strength training, athletes often just push through and try to complete the training, which results in injury. Overuse injuries are the most common injuries in triathlon and are the result of poor technique, lack of strength, poor mobility together with a poor attitude or insight towards selfmanagement and recovery. Another common problem is where athletes overindulge in ‘gear’ in an attempt to make themselves faster or more effective in training or simply to follow the latest trends. However, this can
But what’s the point of having the latest gear if your engine fails you? — Margaret Mielczarek
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© Getty Images/Ironman
The wrong pair of shoes can be catastrophic for an athlete and may result — Margaret Mielczarek in significant injury?
often be to the athlete’s detriment. For example, the wrong pair of shoes can be catastrophic for an athlete and may result in significant injury to, not just the foot, but also the entire lower limb. The other common error is an aggressive or extravagant bike set-up that places excessive amounts of strain on the athlete. Screening and assessments are important to identify how athletes can improve their capacity and therefore remain injury free. On massage and other recovery techniques CM&PW: Massage and soft tissue techniques are a very important part of physiotherapy treatment and should be a big component of any treatment especially for athletes who undergo large amounts of soft tissue trauma. Massage is effective in assisting recovery and, on average, around once per fortnight is recommended. A good home mobility and release program should also be followed. All athletes should own a foam roller, spikey ball and stretch band. Using these recovery tools daily will reduce the likelihood of injury and also reduce the need for treatment.
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Exercise Physiology – assess your potential
Dr Simon Sostaric, a distinguished exercise physiologist and sports scientist, is the founder and director of Melbourne Sports and Allied Health Clinic. He has significant experience in professional sport, clinical practice and academia, along with a lot of experience as an athlete and coach. On the types of services and physiological testing offered to athletes SS: Exercise Physiologists have a range of services that are offered to athletes including cycling and running submaximal and maximal oxygen uptake evaluations (V02 max testing). These tests are done in order to customise training zones and to verify training adaptations. Other testing services include cycling and running economy testing, body composition assessment, thermoregulatory evaluation (skin and core temperature responses to heat), and heat and hypoxic training methods. Services also include testing to identify overtraining syndrome and other fatigue disorders, along with providing education to athletes and coaches on the type and timing of effective recovery methods. The science and testing is high precision, logical and practical.
On the benefits of VO2 max testing SS: V02 max testing, including submaximal workloads, allows us to identify specific training loads for coaches and athletes, and to ascertain whether physiological responses to each change in work rate are justifiable when considering the athlete’s performance level. Testing
when healthy (not necessarily when at the fittest) is a valuable reference point for future interventions, or if an inadvertent injury or illness requires a change of training strategy. Furthermore, all athletes will benefit from training and dietary methods to improve ‘fat adaptability’, which is reflected by distinctive physiological shifts, detectable by our tests. We often integrate body composition and blood pathology to strengthen our interpretation of responses and adaptations. Also, if an athlete is chronically overtrained, we will also see classic signs of decreased V02 max (maximal oxygen uptake), HRmax (maximum heart rate), and Lacmax (maximal lactate concentration). These tests also help us determine an athlete’s energy expense for particular workloads. This is very useful for both the physiologist and dietitian when recommending specific training and racing feeding strategies. On the benefits of heat training methods SS: All endurance athletes will benefit from heat acclimatisation training, not just to improve competition heat resilience, but also to improve performance in cooler conditions. The classic physiological responses to heat training include increased plasma and blood volume, increased cardiovascular stability, earlier
Training TOOLBOX Body Maintenance sweating (and subsequent earlier cooling), reduced rate of rise in skin and core temperature, reduction in perception of heat induced discomfort, improved cognitive function and decision making, dilution of key solutes and reduced reliance on fluid replacement. Heat acclimation also leads to improvements in metabolic economy and reduced fuel expense. On investing in testing – when to see an Exercise Physiologist SS: Most of the athletes that see me initially do so because they have significant problems that are affecting their health and performance. Most of these problems could be avoided if they were more proactive in applying practical and logical science into their programs. As we say, you cannot manage what you don’t measure! These days, human performance technology and expertise are accessible to the general public. If an athlete is not working with their unique physiological data in ways specific to their needs, then they are just guessing. Athletes who are proactive and embracing of their physiological ‘tools’
are more empowered and confident. Physiological testing will provide athletes and their coaches with plenty of ammunition they can integrate into training and racing plans.
To The MAx: V02 max testing allows both coach and athlete to identify training load.
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© Charlie Crowhurst/ Getty Images for Challenge Triathlon
It’s getting HOT in here! How to prepare for a hot race text by katee pedicini | photography by Charlie Crowhurst/ G e t t y I ma g e s f o r C h a l l e n g e T r ia t h l o n
e so often read race reports of athletes that “fell apart” on the run, attributing their performance decline to the soaring heat or humidity. If we look at a race like the Ironman World Championships in Kona, from age group to professional athletes, even the fittest, strongest and well-prepared athlete can come apart due to a poor response to heat. Being able to arrive weeks’ before a race to allow for environmental adaptations is a luxury not all of us can afford. And the question should be raised, if that is an option - do you want to be conducting your key sessions and peak weeks in a new environment where you are trying to adapt to significant heat stress?
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Let’s first look at the physiology of heat stress and adaptation by exploring some key concepts:
Acclimation vs. Acclimatisation:
For the purpose of this article, we will be looking at acclimation, which is the process of utilising manmade interventions for heat adaptation. Acclimation can be more controlled, reducing the risk of heat illness. Acclimatisation refers to the process of adapting to natural environmental conditions by living in them. This can have a greater impact on training quality, and thus I wouldn’t choose this as my first point of call for athletes.
The goal of training is to induce a physiological response that results in increased cardiac output, whereby the heart pumps more blood through the body per minute, with a stronger and more powerful heart muscle. This results in more oxygen being delivered to the brain, vital organs and working muscles. With greater oxygen delivered to working muscles, harmful metabolic byproducts are removed more rapidly. This increased cardiac output is a result of increased plasma volume and therefore total blood volume. With greater blood volume an athlete can dissipate heat more effectively, with increased sweat rate. These results can also be obtained through heat acclimation. When dehydrated we have low blood volume, and therefore your body is already experiencing an element of thermal (heat) stress. In the following
Tools for heat acclimation
recommendations, I utilise an element of dehydration to our advantage for best adaptations. You see, our body is pretty clever, with low blood volume a number of hormone signals occur at the kidneys to increase total red blood cells. For the red blood cells to ‘go to work’ they need transport, in the form of water - resulting in an overall increase in blood volume.
1. Passive heat acclimation Infrared sauna The reason I recommend infrared saunas goes well beyond being able to tolerate heat. The benefits of infrared saunas, when compared with a traditional sauna, extend to improving immunity, metabolism, detoxification and relief from fatigue. In an infrared sauna you do not start to sweat immediately - the infrared heat goes deeper into the body, raising your core temperature, breaking down toxins and eliciting a sweat response that is more akin to exercise-induced sweat response due to higher core temperatures. There is a lower level of humidity, which makes it much easier to breathe for a relaxing experience. See resources at the end of the article for more information.
You may not like the idea of smelly sweat, but sweat is the key to effectively managing heat while training or racing. Sweat is water, drawn from plasma in your blood transferred there by the skin as a cooling mechanism. With increased sweat, blood plasma volume decreases. If re-hydration is limited, blood plasma levels decrease, sweat rate decreases, the cooling effect is reduced and heart rate increases due to the viscosity (thickness) of your blood. And thus the proposed performance decline begins. (5)
Steam room or sauna Even though I view infrared saunas as having superior health benefits to standard saunas or steam rooms, they are much more readily available for athletes to use and integrate into weekly routines - especially after swim sessions at the local recreation centre. Traditional saunas will still help you adapt to heat stress. However, the use of these saunas or steam rooms will be a greater stress on the body when compared with infrared heat, which needs be accounted for in your overall program and reflected with a decrease in intensity during a heat protocol.
Sodium and potassium:
Now, here’s an interesting one for you! If I told you to pack Listerine in your transition bag to gargle mid-run, would you do it? If you said no, science says that you would be missing out on a significant advantage when it comes to tolerating heat during a race or heat acclimation protocol. Recent studies have shown that a menthol mouth rinse helps reduce the perception of heat by lowering thermal sensation. This can be utilised during heat acclimation sessions in the sauna, reducing discomfort and increasing ability to stay in the sauna for the required duration.
Another benefit to strategic dehydration is that your body is signalled to start sweating earlier and learns to hold on to more sodium, by diluting your sweat. This process is important to avoid fatigue, faintness, headaches and muscle breakdown resulting from a compensatory impact with potassium. As sodium runs low, the kidneys are signalled to ‘give up’ levels of potassium to enable sodium retention. Armed with the knowledge of how our system responds to heat stress and dehydration, the next step is to formulate a plan to help you arrive at the start line, as well prepared as possible to deal with high temps or humidity.
2. Active heat acclimation Heat chamber You can opt for a DIY approach, by conducting your bike or treadmill workout in a room with a heater that has a temperature sensor. This will have a big impact on your overall training and recovery, so make sure you, or your coach, adapt your program accordingly. You may also find a local university or performance centre specifically set up for heat chamber sessions.
Training later in the day
Hopefully, it goes without saying that you still need to take a sensible approach here. Putting yourself into a heat illness state is not going to provide the benefits you’re after. But if you live in a relatively cooler environment compared to where you will be racing, and want to train in conditions closer to your destination of warmer temps, a simple way is to train later in the day when temperatures are warmer than in the morning or evening.
Additional clothing Whether training indoors or outdoors, by adding additional clothing such as gloves and a hat - when they wouldn’t normally be required - you can essentially trap heat in your body to simulate warmer conditions and raise core temperature.
Efficiency: With greater blood volume an athlete can dissipate heat more effectively, with increased sweat rate.
As mentioned previously this is a great, albeit unique, technique to reduce thermal sensation. Gargling while running would certainly take some skill, so maybe practice this one in training! The same concept can be utilised with a menthol skin rub to reduce thermal sensation on the skin – yep, studies (4) have shown a positive impact on power output with this technique.
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• During sauna sessions, avoid drinking water. Utilise water to splash your face or rinse your body as a cooling technique. • If utilising sauna sessions post training, do these within 30min of finishing your workout, but do not re-hydrate. A post workout smoothie or fuel is okay, but avoid lots of fluid. A level of dehydration helps the adaptation process. • If utilising sauna pre-training, best results will come from an infrared sauna due to its ability to increase core temperature - only necessary in cool training climates. • After a sauna session, DO NOT take in excessive amounts of water or fluid straight away. Gradually rehydrate over the course of 2-3hours to ensure results and effective sodium management. • As for training, apply the principles of progressive overload. Start with small durations (10mins) of heat exposure and gradually build up (30-45min) over the 4-week period.
General protocol considerations and framework: • A combination of both passive and active heat acclimation techniques will yield best results. • You will need 5-14 days of consistent heat exposure for best results. • Start your heat acclimation protocol 4-weeks out from a key race and gradually introduce to your training over a 2-week period before increasing frequency and duration of passive and active heat sessions. • Loss of acclimation can occur within a 5-day period, so if you’re going to commit to a heat acclimation protocol, stay committed. • The day before your race avoid major heat stress. Much like training, you will want to taper down your heat acclimation sessions. • In addition to heat acclimation, consider cooling techniques, such as menthol rinse or make use of ice slurries during training and racing. Warning: make sure you get a proper bottle for this. I recommend the Floe Bottle. See Resource list. • With the goal being to increase sweat rate and cooling, you will no longer need use salt tablets. Seriously, stay away! • Worried about cramping? Cramping is a magnesium and potassium issue, not a sodium issue. If concerned, seek consultation for a magnesium loading protocol pre-race.
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Sauna protocol and framework:
To know if you are conducting the protocol effectively and safely I recommend testing some daily metrics. Here are some options available to you, with varying levels of time, accuracy and cost:
Urinary analysis - Pee sticks
By sampling your urine first thing in the morning and the a post-training window, you can assess your level of hydration and how well recovered you are, particularly if your nutrition needs a boost or if immunity is compromised. You will want to purchase ‘pee sticks’ that measure 10 parameters – see the resource list at the end of the article.
Laboratory sweat testing
You can seek out a local provider or university that provides sweat testing to measure mineral and electrolyte loss during exercise. Some providers can send you a home test kit where you will need an enclosed room with a heater to measure room temperature - a controlled testing environment. Based on the results, a personalised hydration plan can be formulated for you to trial in training in preparation for race day. See resource list at the end of the article.
Pre and post training weigh in
Jumping on the scales pre and post training is a way to give a broad analysis of how hydrated or dehydrated you are. This approach is limited as it does not account for potential fat or muscle loss during exercise and thus it can be hard to determine if body weight difference is purely due to hydration status.
Heart rate variability (HRV)
Studies (3,6) have shown that dehydration can impact heart rate variability (HRV), showing a decrease in HRV in dehydrated athletes. However, HRV can also be decreased due to illness, overtraining, stress and poor recovery. As a measure of general recovery and training readiness HRV is fantastic, however, to measure hydration status directly would using this method would be subjective at best. (5)
A note for female athletes and their coaches: When conducting a heat acclimation protocol and race plan for female athletes, there are additional factors to consider, including: -- Are they menstruating? -- At what phase of their menstrual cycle will they be in for the race/the heat acclimation protocol? -- Are they post menopause? -- Are they taking an oral contraceptive pill? If yes, what type? (Mono, bi or tri-phasic)
Training TOOLBOX Summary:
Depending on the answer to these questions you will need to adapt the hydration requirements as different hormone levels impact the absorption of key minerals and electrolytes. For example, during the luteal phase of a menstrual cycle woman are more susceptible to dehydration due to a loss in blood plasma volume. If you would like to learn more about female specific hydration requirements, refer to my latest article in the PINK edition of the magazine - the December 2016 edition.
• The focus and goal of a heat acclimation protocol should be increased blood volume • Heat acclimation is not only physiological, but it is also psychological • Exposure to heat stress and cooling methods decreases thermal sensation for overall improved performance • Sweating is great! • An element of dehydration can be used to your advantage • Time to pack Listerine in your transition bag - who knew! • Apply the principles of progressive overload, build up gradually • The most successful protocol will be well planned, with training plan adjustments made to consider additional heat stress
Questions? Drop me a line: firstname.lastname@example.org Katee Pedicini B.Ex.Sci Holistic Endurance www.holisticendurance.com.au
Holistic Endurance Resources: Pee Sticks: 10SG, Reagent Heart Rate Variability app: Athlete Podcast: Real Food Reel: Benefits of Infrared Sauna, Episode 60. Ice slurry bottle: Floebottle.com Sweat testing: Sweat Think Go Faster
References: 1. ELY, M., CHEUVRONT, S., ROBERTS, W., & MONTAIN, S. (2007). Impact of Weather on Marathon-Running Performance. Medicine & Science In Sports & Exercise, 39(3), 487-493. http://dx.doi.org/10.1249/ mss.0b013e31802d3aba 2. Montain, S., Ely, M., & Cheuvront, S. (2007). Marathon Performance in Thermally Stressing Conditions. Sports Medicine, 37(4), 320-323. http://dx.doi. org/10.2165/00007256-200737040-00012 3. Oliveira, T., Ferreira, R., Mattos, R., Silva, J., & Lima, J. (2011). Influence of Water Intake on Post-Exercise Heart Rate Variability Recovery. Journal Of Exercise Physiology, 14(4). Retrieved from https://www.asep.org/ asep/asep/JEPonline_August_2011_Oliveira.pdf 4. Schlader, Z., Simmons, S., Stannard, S., & Mündel, T. (2011). The independent roles of temperature and thermal perception in the control of human thermoregulatory behavior. Physiology & Behavior, 103(2), 217-224. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.physbeh.2011.02.002 5. Sims S (n.d.). Roar. 6. Stanley, J., Halliday, A., D’Auria, S., Buchheit, M., & Leicht, A. (2014). Effect of sauna-based heat acclimation on plasma volume and heart rate variability. European Journal Of Applied Physiology, 115(4), 785-794. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00421-014-3060-1
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Are your shoulders ready for a great
swim stroke? text by Kriss hendy | photography by Shutterstock.com
tend to treat swimmers and triathletes as two separate groups with regards to their physical conditioning. This may seem to you as a silly thing to say but regarding the type of programming, intensities and positions both groups are exposed to on a regular basis, there are a number of significant differences. The most obvious difference is the sustained periods of time triathletes spend in the ‘rounded shoulder-forward position’, being ‘aero’ on the bike and commonly running with their shoulders rolled forward. Time spent in these
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positions will unfortunately become habit and are only exaggerated by the slouched positions we assume in day-to-day life, at our desks, in our cars and on our phones. As a result, one of the main concerns I have with the modern day athlete is their general inability to hold good posture standing with feet straight, back flat, stomach tight, head neutral and palms forward (requiring external rotation of the shoulder). Athletes need to avoid the comfy and habitual position - arms crossed, back slouched and shoulders rolled forward.
Where does swimming come in to this? The shoulder complex is designed to achieve the greatest range of motion of any joint in our bodies. This exceptional range of motion is supported by a complex system of ligaments that stabilises the whole structure, allowing it to withstand large external forces whilst accomplishing complex movement patterns. Swimming requires a big range of overhead movement patterns. These movement patterns can be divided into two primary phases known as pull-
Training TOOLBOX Strength and Conditioning
and ‘faster’ in the water, we need to mobilise and activate the structures that will make our stroke efficient and a lot more sustainable.
How can we do this? I want to give you some exercises that you can start doing today that will improve your range of motion, bring balance to your body and will improve your overall performance.
But first a quick test of mobility and posture This ‘T-Spine’ mobility exercise (see images below) that I get all my athletes/ clients to perform during a warm-up quickly identifies key areas of weakness in the hips and upper back. Give them a go full range of motion should see rotation through your thoracic spine, which allows you to open your chest to the sky with arms extended. If you have poor range of motion (ROM) in your upper back and shoulders, and struggle to find full rotation on land, then how can you expect your body to get a strong pulling motion, with a good head and body position, a strong kick and the associated rotation when in the water? In black and white - poor ROM will prevent you from executing an efficient stroke. through and recovery, both which have varying degrees of internal and external rotation of the shoulder whilst circumduction takes place. A classic injury such as ‘swimmers shoulder’ is a result of micro trauma caused through repetitive activity, usually presenting itself as a ‘rotator cuff’ imbalance or injury. Tight shoulders and poor posture causes the shoulder to be pulled and rotated forward placing greater demand on the rotator cuff muscles and other shoulder stabilisers. Whether it’s a solo open water swim or part of a triathlon, swim training and racing requires a large amount of repetitive motion. Now, our bodies can put up with a considerable amount of misuse, absorbing poor mechanics and technique over long durations. However, in time your poor posture and lack of mobility will start to affect the mechanics of your body, in this case your shoulder, and cervical and thoracic regions (neck and upper back). Your movement will become compromised, structures will weaken and injury will inevitably occur. Before we even consider strengthening the muscles that will make us ‘stronger’
How will mobility and stability benefit my swim? • Free up the lats (wings) for optimal reach. • Strong rotator cuff for the catch and pull (requires internal rotation). • Increased ability to move your hand past your thigh on the pull/propulsion phase due to better internal rotation.
Where ‘core’ comes in: • A better body position achieved through a strong core will help avoid that hip ‘wiggle’ and arms crossing your mid line, wasting time and energy. • Better posture helps develop good body roll in the water, which gives you a longer more powerful reach and streamlined stroke. • Having a strong upper core helps attach your arm stroke to your body. Your body acts as one – with the rotation aiding your stroke rather than solely relying on your shoulder muscles. •
Scapula Retraction: Your ‘scapulae’ are your shoulder blades. Scapula retraction is the action of pulling your shoulder blades together - bringing them towards your spine. Good scapula retraction will stabilise your arm attachment to the body and strengthens your upper core. Now, we don’t consciously retract our shoulders when we swim, but by spending time working on this out of the pool will ensure stability of the shoulder when under stress and prevent us from getting those nagging injuries.
Poor Range of Motion (ROM) will prevent you from executing an — Kriss Hendy efficient stroke.
T-SPINE mobility exercise This exercise will show you how much range of motion (ROM) you currently have in your upper back and shoulders. Australian Triathlete |
The following exercises are a series of basic scapula retraction and stabilisation exercises:
1 1. the seated row: This exercise is performed either using resistance bands or a weighted cable machine. Ensure you sit with your back straight and arms fully extended out in front, pull towards you squeezing your shoulder blades together whilst keeping your elbows in. Look to perform 3-4 sets of 8-10 repetitions with 45-60seconds of rest in between.
2. Resistance Band Pull Apart and Resistance Band Lat Pull Downs: Run through these Band Retractions
3. Resistance Band Rotator Cuff Internal and external Rotations: Rotator Cuff strength exercises should
shown in the pictures above, squeezing your shoulder blades together for 2/3 seconds. Stand up tall as you do it but keep your back straight - donâ€™t arch it. Hold your stomach in, your shoulders back and chest proudly forwards. We suggest you complete 2-3 sets of 8-10 repetitions.
be tailored to the individualâ€™s current condition and ability regarding their range of motion. Resistance can be accomplished with different types of resistance, with common exercises using resistance bands or weights. I would tend to start with band work and then progress into heavier loads once they have gained a level of competency.
By doing these exercises before you swim, and even before you go to bed at night, you will help to rectify the bad posture that may have adopted at work. Over time this will get better and go a long way to reducing your chance of injury or impingement in the shoulder, neck and back muscles.
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Training TOOLBOX Strength and Conditioning 4. Resistance Band Single Arm Stretch: This is a fantastic exercise for opening up the shoulder joint and those ‘lats’ we talk about. Ensure to allow the resistance band to stretch out your shoulder and then sit back into it (see images below). Make sure you breathe through the stretch to allow your nervous system to relax into the stretch. Perform 1-2 sets of 30-45 seconds on each side.
Strength & Performance Coach
4 To conclude, before we approach the more ‘traditional’ strength exercises that you may be expecting, we all need to take a step back and ensure we have a healthy level of mobility as well as stability in and around our shoulders. Only then can we look to develop strength endurance and power elements into our programming.
Seeing the need for better athlete education and understanding with regards to Strength & Conditioning for the Endurance Athlete. Kriss works with a variety of athletes from Age Groupers to Professionals, developing programs that support and heighten their endurance performance. Kriss is based in Byron Bay with his wife (Professional Triathlete) Polly Hendy. He has both a local & International client base that use his Online Strength Training Packages. For further details or to contact Kriss: www.khstrengthandperformance.com Twitter: khendy3 Instagram: @kriss_hendy
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tips & tricks Stepping up in race Distance -
From Olympic to Half Ironman Following on from his article in the last edition of Australian Triathlete (the Kona edition, Volume 24.1) where he provided advice on stepping up from Sprint to Olympic Distance, triathlon coach Nick Croft shares his tips on stepping up from Olympic Distance to Half Ironman. t e x t b y Ni c k C r o f t
ith longer races, the only significant change you’ll notice stepping up from the Olympic distance plan is when the actual training takes place. Your weekly schedule, Monday through Friday, stays pretty much the same as an Olympic distance program, except a few changes to some of the bike and run content, which focuses more on strength specific efforts. It is on the weekends that you’ll have a heavier (longer) training load. Your typical weekend will incorporate a long bike ride on a Saturday for example, with the distance typically around 80 to 100km (you will gradually build into this distance). Your long ride is then usually followed by a transition run — an easy 1520minute run done directly after your ride. Total time spent training on Saturday’s: up to 4 hours, depending on how fast
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you bike. Then you’ll hit your long run on Sunday, which is usually about 15 to 22km (this will take up to 2hrs15min plus, and you’ll be holding a pace up to 1min30sec per km slower than your current 5min/km race pace). Getting yourself professionally set up on your bike is recommended when stepping up to the Half Ironman or Ironman events. The bike becomes the focus point in both training and on race day, so being weak or unfit on the bike will hurt your run – even if you are a strong runner. Race nutrition takes on a whole new importance also. There are so many sports nutrition products available on the market these days - all of which do the same thing as far as feed you carbohydrate. It’s important to work out what agrees with you in both taste and style of fuel delivery -options include
gels, concentrated carb blend drinks, energy bars, lollies and so on. You need to work out what works for you, which is best done in training, well before race day. Consumption of between 50-80grams carbohydrate/hour during the bike (less for females and more for males) is required to fuel you, with a lesser portion needed to get you home on the run. You can take in more, and digest better on the bike, so this is where to make sure you are topped up. Having a little less on the run will be OK and won’t give you potential gut distress. Ingesting the least amount you can that can still fuel you should be the goal on the run. This Half Ironman program dedicates greater volume over the weekend to the longer ride and run, which is the main difference between stepping up from the Olympic distance program.
Nick Croft Nick Croft* Former professional and Australian Triathlete of the year. A two- time Noosa Triathlon winner and coach for the last 22 years. Nick coaches athletes of all abilities in his hometown of Noosa on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast and runs Noosa Tri Camps and online coaching through www.mscsport.com.au
Below is a typical
Half ironman training week
up to 12hrs (8 weeks out from race goal) Monday
Swim 2.5km 10x50m easy, 400m tempo, 300m hard, 200m tempo, 100m hard, 400m tempo, 6x50m easy, 100m kick, 200m paddles.
Bike 45km 30min easy Z1-2 / 4x10min @ Z3 / 80-90rpm – 3min easy between .
Run 1hr hilly terrain – warming up first 10min then work series of efforts uphill 2-3min in length x 4-6 / run easy downhill to recover.
Bike 45km 30min warm up add 6x5min over geared seated in saddle 60rpm / Z2-3HR – easy 3min recovery in light gear – 80+rpm between.
Swim 2.5km – 500m easy, 200m kick, 6x100m – 25m hard / 25m easy, 100m easy 12x50m hard, 400m paddles, 100m easy.
Bike 80km Z1-3aerobic pace / undulating terrain.
Run 15km Z1-2 / tempo undulating terrain.
Run 2km off bike Z3.
Run off bike 3km @ Z2.
Pm Swim 2km straight – 500m warm up. 1000m paddles @ race tempo / 500m warm down.
Additional Program Notes Swim – Ideally do in swim squad/tri group or masters. Having the watchful eye of a coach will save you many hours of repeating stroke mistakes. Try and have identified three areas to work on progressing forward. Bike - Cadence (RPM) for bike tempo/ race pace intervals aim to be in the 80-90rpm range – when on flat terrain – unless otherwise specified.
Run form and technique – Focus on fast leg turnover (cadence) this should be in the 85-90 hits of each foot per minute. Once in a while during your run count your foot strikes for 15 seconds and aim to be around 22-23 hits per 15 seconds. Landing on you mid foot rather than heel strike will allow you to have a faster leg turnover, reduce stress on your legs and knees. Aim to take shorter strides on purpose and focus on this fast turnover in your bricks when running off the bike. The principles are the same for each of the programs when stepping up in race distance. Once you are through your first
season or two and your body is in some shape and your heart rate doesn’t race away just by finishing set distances in training anymore, then it is time to up the volume and intensity. Of course, not everyone has the same amount of time to put into preparation. As with any intensity training - before getting started, make sure that you’ve received the OK from your doctor and have some exercise under your belt. Also, if you have the opportunity, find a friend, join a local tri club or training group if you didn’t do so last season and or get on board with a coach who can do some of your training with you. Having others involved in your training program, as part of your support network is a great way to add fun to the training and race day experience. Ideally having a season behind you is a good idea when approaching a performance based program. This would mean having anywhere from three to six months of steady and consistent training under your belt before beginning this particular program.
Heart Rate Training In my previous articles, I have mentioned using a Heart Rate Monitor as a means of learning how to pace in training and racing. It is a simple process and your training time should maximise your fitness gains safely and effectively. That’s why I recommend that you use a heart rate monitor during much of your bike and run training. This gadget acts as your ‘personal coach’, keeping you within certain training zones and making your training time and efforts more effective. To keep it simple, you’ll be training in one of the three zones (see table on following page). The training zones are laid out as an intensity guide for the bike and run training in the Half Ironman program example provided. As you get fitter and better conditioned a more refined training zone guide comprising of 5 training zones can be worked into the program. Australian Triathlete |
tips & tricks © Chris Hyde/Getty Images
Zone 1 = 60-70% of max HR: The ideal zone for recovery workouts, fat burning and endurance building. Zone 2 = 70-80% of max HR: This zone improves your cardiovascular fitness, muscle strength and endurance. Zone 3= >80% of max HR: Higher heart rates for interval training at greater than race pace intensity.
Consistency and making it to the sessions laid out is important to achieve your goal on race day and arrive fully prepared and ready to go.
Some Training Pitfalls Before Race Day • More is not always better. Be realistic. For your first Half Ironman, your goal should be to finish the event - set sights higher perhaps next time. Keep in mind the fact you have to fit the training in around a full life and some recovery is also needed to get the triathlon benefits of stressing the body. • You are better to go into your race a little underdone rather than have done too much. There are many people who line up on race day feeling more than a little jaded by over doing it in the lead-up – this is where your selfconfidence comes into play, and belief that the program you have followed has done the job. The actual race day excitement will lift you to greater heights as long as you are tapered going in. • Pacing oneself in training is just as important as on race day. Many
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hyped-up beginners go too hard in the first two weeks of a program only to wilt by week 3 or 4! You are better to complete a week or most sessions feeling you have a little in reserve. The key to this sport is recovery and backing up training again the next day. • Make sure you also look after yourself post longer training sessions with hydration and nutrition, putting back in the system what you’ve used up, to aid recovery.
Rehashing Some Race Day Tips • Have a carbohydrate loaded pre-race meal at least 2hours before race start. Top up the carbohydrates in the last 40minutes or so with some sports/ carb drink, gels or energy bar (test in training what sits best with you).
• Walk out and visualise the entrance and exits of the transition areas before the race. Do this once you have racked your bike - it will help find your bike after the swim. Walk through, and then jog through, the pathways. • Check out what you will need to do next before you enter and exit the transition areas. In the first transition area, arrange your clothing and equipment left to right or bottom to top in the order in which you will grab them. • Remove your swim cap and goggles as you run from the swim area to the first transition. If it’s a wetsuit swim, make sure you have the torso free of the suit also and down to the waist by the time you’re at the bike.
As you ride out of transition: Have your bike set to a lower gear to help get blood flow back to the legs and to give your legs a chance to warm up.
• As you ride out of transition, have your bike to set a lower gear to help get blood flow back to the legs, and to give your legs a chance to warm up. • If you can do so safely and have practised in training, loosen your shoes and slip your feet out (but keep the shoes clipped on) as you approach the bike finish line. • Consider using elastic laces for your running shoes to save the time of lacing up. • Use a number belt for your race number and put this on as you run out of the transition area. Start the running leg with a shorter stride to help your legs get momentum and work on landing on your mid-foot to keep momentum high. • As with your previous events, don’t lose sight of what attracted you to the sport in the first place and what your goals were at the start. Keep it fun and enjoy the ongoing process and the race day just like you did in your first event. Australian Triathlete |
Overcoming the fear of open water swimming text by julie tedde | p h o t o g r a p h y b y G e t t y ima g e s f o r i r o n ma n
he swim is probably one of the main reasons most people decide not to do a triathlon - many statistics identify the number of individuals who don’t do a triathlon because of the swim leg. The number or percentage of males compared to females is pretty similar, so whether male or female, the unknown of the swim leg or fear of the open water stops people taking up the sport. How can I help you? As a coach and a race director, someone who stands on a beach to start a race, I am very familiar with what is needed to take on an open water swim and what is required to finish it. The first step is acknowledging you have a fear and then working through what exactly you’re fearful of. You need to identify what your fear is - it is unlikely to be just one thing but more likely to be a combination of things. For example, not
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being able to touch the bottom, unknown creatures lurking in the water, being pushed under, not being able to breathe, and not being able to stop and hold onto something are some of the common reasons people do not take up the challenge of a triathlon. Their fear of not finishing the swim or coping with the stresses of the open water is far greater than their desire to complete a triathlon.
Engage a coach Once you have identified what you’re afraid of, it is still unlikely that you are going to head to the open water and take the plunge on your own. It’s beneficial to engage a coach, triathlon club or squad, or even to work with some friends who can help you work through the problem. You need practical strategies to help you to overcome your fears such as being pushed under or grabbed or feeling like you can’t breathe.
Practice in the open water The pool is a great place to build your fitness, train regularly and practise drills that will, in turn, improve your technique. All of these develop an athlete’s efficiency in the water and certainly help to lower the fatigue you may experience. But ideally, you need to practice in the open water too. In the end, there are no waves or current in the pool, and of course there is a place to stand when you are feeling a bit tired. Swimming in the open water, you can practise your swimming in all sorts of conditions and develop the experience to know you have done it in the past so that race day won’t be a problem. You can also practice sighting objects, and water entry and exit techniques. Be mindful though, you should only swim in the open water with others and always swim in a designated swim area.
Training TOOLBOX beginners
WHAT TO PRACTICE
In a pool practice breathing out when
your head is down and when it’s
turned or when you’re sighting this is when you breathe in. Don’t start off too hard at the beginning of the race. Make sure your wetsuit is not too tight around your neck.
In a pool practice swimming with
others next to you. Firstly with only
two or three others around you, and
then increase the number as you feel comfortable. As your confidence improves, add a bit of pushing and grabbing but keep it friendly. Finally, do the same in the open water.
Photo by Tom Pennington
Pre-event, test the water Either the day before or on the morning of the event get in and test the water so that it is not a shock when you enter at the start of the race. Cold water causes the blood vessels to constrict so it is harder for the oxygen in the blood to get to the working muscles. Warming up, settling the breathing, understanding if there is a current or not, are all things that can be worked through. N.B.: If you do not have a wetsuit and the water temperature is less than 15 degrees Celsius, getting in early won’t work, as you will get colder once you are out. Performing a dry land warm up would be a preference - this includes running, arm circles, push ups, etc.
Have confidence in your training The most experienced swimmers can get panicky during a swim leg but being able to calm down and keep moving using the best technique you can is a key. Just relaxing and knowing you are fit enough is a big step to finishing the swim leg no matter what the conditions.
Follow feet and bubbles - this will assist you with swimming in the right direction. But don’t solely rely on this as we all know, and have seen, even the best and most experienced athletes swim off course.
Drafting in the swim leg - sitting on the feet or shoulder of another athlete is legal in the swim and has the advantage of pulling you or sucking you along. It can even protect you from a swell.
Learn to breathe to both sides Otherwise known as bilateral breathing - this helps balance one’s stroke. In the pool practise breathing every three strokes.
Position Position yourself at the start of a race so that you don’t feel trapped in and make sure you are familiar with the depth of the water so you know whether you will need to run/wade for a bit, dolphin dive or start swimming straight away.
julie tedde Julie is Head Coach of TRG Triathlon and Multisport, with 20 years coaching experience working with Junior Development all the way through to Kona Ironman athletes.
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Training Young Triathletes in the Heat t e x t b y M i c h e l l e h e m l e y | p h o t o g r a p h y b y G e t t y ima g e s
ur young triathletes are certainly very vocal when it comes to how they are feeling. When a hot day strikes, you can guarantee they will tell you EXACTLY how hot they feel! It’s not all words either. It has been scientifically proven that children and adults process heat differently and therefore, children can be more prone to heat illness. So while we as adults may not feel under too much stress while we are coaching, our young charges may not be coping quite as effectively as we are on a warm day. Here are some of the physiological differences between adults and children: • Children have a proportionally larger body surface than adults do and the smaller the child, the greater the ratio of surface area (skin) to their size. As a result, children absorb more heat, are affected by the heat quicker, and are at a greater risk of excessive loss of fluids through sweat. • Children have thinner skin than adults, which also contributes to them absorbing heat quicker than adults do. • Children have a higher Heart Rate (HR) and Respiratory Rate (RR) than adults. Therefore, when both of these systems become stressed exercising in the heat, they are not able to cope as readily as adults do.
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Therefore, when it comes to the summer heat and our junior triathletes, we do need to be very careful and modify their training accordingly.
What are the recommendations and guidelines for young athletes exercising in the heat? The most recent guidelines from the American Academy of Paediatrics (September 2011) suggest that most healthy children can participate in a wide range of warm to hot weather activities when adequate hydration is maintained and that heat illness is preventable if adults take some precautions to protect the young athletes. They recommend the following guidlines: • Make sure coaches and staff are trained in monitoring and attending to heat stress • Educate children to prepare for the heat with access to fluids, hats, appropriate clothing and adequate shade for activities and rest • Allow time to gradually adapt to physical activity in the heat • Allow time for, and encourage, sufficient fluid intake before, during and after training • Limit participation of children who have had recent illness • Develop and have an emergency action plan in place.
Similarly, the Victorian Department of Education ‘School Extreme Heat Policy’ doesn’t state a set temperature of when all activity should be stopped in schools. Instead, it suggests “reasonable steps to minimise the risk of heat stress” such as making sure students keep hydrated, wear wide-brimmed hats and high factor sunblock, stay in the shade, don’t exert themselves and stay away from reflective surfaces.
How Can We Monitor Junior Triathlon Training During the Heat? There is currently no set temperature where it is deemed “too hot, and all activity must stop”. Common sense, modifications and constantly monitoring our young athletes and how they are coping is the key, and as coaches, we need to be ultra-vigilant to the young athletes under our care. We would suggest the following general principles when structuring your junior triathlon sessions as the summer heats up:
1. Stay in the shade! Can you move your session indoors or under a tree rather than cancelling training? Easy to do with a few simple modifications. 2. Take the opportunity to work on skills and drills. Running drills and transition practice, for example, can still occur under the shade of a tree or on an indoor basketball court.
Training TOOLBOX youth and junior 3. If you do conduct training on a hot day, prescribe a set with shorter repeats, longer rest intervals and plenty of opportunities for the participants to drink.
Hot Weather Activity Examples: Cycling
4. Why not take the chance to do something a bit different that would benefit the athletes? Head indoors for a massage roller session, complete a stretching routine or a couple of core challenges.
• Mount/dismount practice on an indoor sports court • Skill practice (e.g., cycling around marker cones) on an indoor sports court • Wind trainer or roller session in the shade or indoors (same short efforts, longer rest principle as swimming)
5. Make sure participants are wearing appropriate clothing, hats and sunscreen.
Hot Weather Activity Examples: Running
Hot Weather Activity Examples: Swimming
• Running drills in the shade • Run specific strength circuit (lunges, squats, step-ups) in the shade
• You can still suffer in the water on a hot day, so stick to shorter repeats, longer rests and drill work, such as: • ➢Walk back 25m’s or 50m’s efforts • ➢Drills over 25m or 50m’s repeats with fins on More frequent rests also allow you to constantly monitor your swimmers, as it’s not always easy to tell how they are coping in the water.
Hot Weather Activity Examples: Transitions • Practice the transition process of running to a set transition and shoes on, helmet on as quickly as possible. Make it fun by timing the participants, or having handicapped races. In conclusion, the main way we can avoid our young triathletes suffering from
heat stress and illness is to constantly monitor our young charges to make sure they are coping. Be flexible with the session plan and change accordingly, make sure the kids are drinking and don’t be scared to call it a day or shorten a session if it is just TOO hot.
‘Michelle Hemley ‘Michelle Hemley is a leading Exercise Professional and Swim, Run and Triathlon Coach. With over 15 years coaching experience, Michelle has successfully worked with hundreds of individuals of all ages from grassroots to high performance. Michelle is a passionate endurance and multisport athlete who has completed nine Ironman triathlons and she has tertiary qualifications in Sport Science, Physical Education, Exercise Physiology and Sports Nutrition’.
Our passion is to inspire people of all ages to find joy in a more active lifestyle and turn their sporting dreams into reality...
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Power to weight ratio Is it really so important? t e x t b y P e t e r H e r z i g | p h o t o g r a p h y b y i r o n ma n / G e t t y ima g e s
short walk from my new residence in Noosaville is the 3km mark of the Noosa Triathlon run course. (I’m sorry to say our spare room is booked up for the next three years. But I will cheer for you if you are competing). Of interest to me, while watching the runners during the world’s largest Olympic Distance triathlon in October was the difference in body sizes (and correspondingly body weights) of those participating. As a sports dietitian I
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am often asked about maximising powerto-weight, and in this article, I would like to explain why this may or may not be important to you. Most people have heard of the term “power-to-weight ratio”, but what does it actually mean? Power-to-weight or watts per kilogram is a measure that allows us to compare individuals, or examine improvements in training, particularly in cycling performance. Put simply - power is the most effort or
work you can put out for a certain amount of time but the definition doesn’t stop there. We also need to know what power we are talking about - is it the maximum power you can sprint at, your functional threshold power (FTP) or power for the duration of an Ironman (IM) bike leg? We need to compare apples to apples. Andy Coggan has an excellent article on Power Profiling on TrainingPeaks if you want more information.
© Lintao Zhang/Getty Images
Training TOOLBOX Nutrition © Lintao Zhang/Getty Images
Why it isn’t so important I hear you - you don’t participate in hilly road cycling, and you aren’t planning on doing Embrunman anytime soon. While power-to-weight is important up a hill, on the flat it makes much less difference. For our same two riders, Mike can average 37.3kph on the flat, while Amanda can only manage 36.9kph*. Even though Amanda’s power-to-weight is greater, it is Mike’s greater power (300W) that is more important.
But, what about aerodynamics, doesn’t a bigger body push more air? Yes, that’s true. In fact, aerodynamic resistance is responsible for 90% of the energy used in a time trial over 40kph. Though just because Mike is 33% heavier than Amanda doesn’t mean his aerodynamic drag slows him by 33% - in reality, it is significantly less. Mike’s extra drag isn’t enough to counteract his extra power. A recent study showed just this - in real world performances, the best predictor of time trial time was power during a time trial normalised to a cyclists drag area (Peterman et al., 2015). In other words, better performances were those that put out more power with the smallest drag on their bodies.
Why it’s important
Again, we can’t directly measure running power, though arguably for running it is more beneficial to be lighter compared with on the bike as running relies on you moving your own body weight. One study (Sedeaud et al., 2014) looked at the top 10 athletes from all running events at the Olympic Games. This study showed that in events over 3000m, the fastest runners had a body weight of 57.5-57.8kg on average. Now before you all try and match these runners, you need to understand 1) running was their only sport and 2) runners were on average 172cm tall. So, unless you are close to the size of Henri Schoeman already, this may not be an appropriate goal for you.
Considerations when maximising power to weight
© Delly Carr/ITU
Firstly, bragging rights between you and your training buddies of course! Power-toweight in cycling has traditionally been used to compare the abilities of climbers. When the gradient increases, power-toweight becomes more important. The steeper the hill, the more you are working against gravity - so, heavier riders need to produce more power to keep up. It is also beneficial to have a higher power-toweight ratio if your sport depends on accelerating, decelerating or changing direction quickly. For example, Amanda Jones can put out 250W/60kg body weight or 4.2W/kg (FTP) and Mike Jones (no relation) can output 300W/80kg body weight or 3.75W/kg (FTP). On a 5% gradient climb, Amanda will be able to sit on 20.8kph, while Mike can only manage 19.9kph (theoretically*). Compare this with a tour de France leader at 6W/kg, who may be able to average 28kph up the same climb.*
What about running efficiency?
weight: Body weight is more important in running than in the cycling leg of a triathlon.
Let’s go back to Amanda for a moment. For Amanda, losing 2.5kg (body fat) would be similar to gaining ~10W of power on a 5% climb*. If you think this sounds like a lot to lose for a small gain, you would be correct. For most athletes, it is more important to maximise training gains (power), focus on fuelling during training and competition, and on healthy eating for recovery. In a study on non-professional Ironman triathletes by Knechtle et al. (2010), there was a good association between race times and training volume in women, but not skinfold measures. Interestingly for men, skinfold measures had a good correlation with race times, though training volume did not. Australian Triathlete |
So Pete, where does this leave me? For those who have ticked all the boxes you have plateaued in your training, your diet is fuelling your body with everything it needs, you’re recovering adequately from training, and you have a race nutrition plan, which you have trialled in training, then you may benefit from some fat loss. But we then need to make sure that you actually have some body fat to lose and can do so safely (without losing muscle/ power). This requires accurate and reliable measurement. DEXA (Dual X-ray Absorptiometry) scans or skinfold measures are very accessible and reasonably priced. DEXA is a non-invasive way to measure your body composition, including your total body fat. Please note that reputable DEXA businesses calibrate their machines, use positioning blocks and provide guidance on test preparation for the 24hrs prior. Skinfolds can be taken by anyone with an ISAK qualification (usually a sports dietitian or exercise physiologist). To give you an idea, taking the sum of seven skinfolds: 4060mm for male athletes and 50-70mm for female athletes indicate low body fat levels. (Note: these levels won’t be achievable for everyone). Bioelectrical impedance is also a commonly used method for body fat assessment, though it is not a sufficiently reliable or accurate measure.
women (Note: this was predominately upper body). The reason men in the study lost muscle is that if we lose weight too quickly, we will lose not only fat but muscle also. Irrespective of how many protein shakes, chicken breasts or tofu you can swallow, if lose weight too quickly you may also reduce your training quality, decrease power through muscle loss, increase recovery times and become more susceptible to illness. Another complication with rapid weight loss, particularly for females, includes changes in menstrual function. Amenorrhoea or the absence of menses may be the first indicator that weight loss is occurring too fast or that you don’t have enough in reserve. We all need a certain amount of body fat to sustain us. Continuing to run your body low can lead to bone mineral loss (yes, also in men). The technical term we give this is ‘low energy availability’, which may also be linked to iron deficiency. This isn’t a healthy place to be. If you do notice any of your training buddies looking like they may have gone too far in terms of weight loss, please let them know that you are concerned about them. Also, female athletes should see their GP if they notice irregularities in menstrual function when attempting any weight loss.
How do I do it? Slowly! We know that gradual weight (fat) loss can allow your body to still function well. A Norwegian study in 2011 examined weight loss in athletes showing that a slow weight reduction combined with resistance training actually allowed a slight increase in lean body mass (muscle) (Garthe et al.). When the same researchers doubled the weight loss efforts, lean body mass decreased in men, but still increased in
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Monitoring I would always recommend discussing any weight loss goals with your coach, to make sure it fits in with his/her training plan. Monitoring and recording your power data/training/race times, weight (from reliable scales) and energy levels/feelings will help you determine if any weight loss plan is working for you. Remember - we don’t want a decrease in performance. This will help your coach to monitor you, though would also be very useful if you are seeing a sports dietitian.
So, to recap: • Your power output and aerodynamic drag on a flatter course are more important than your power-to-weight ratio. • Body weight when running is more important than in the triathlon cycling leg. • If you have maximised your gains from your training and ticked other nutrition goals, then looking at maximising power-to-weight may give you a slight performance advantage.
Training TOOLBOX © Korupt Vision
• Losing weight too quickly or with nothing in reserve may result in a loss of lean body mass (and subsequent loss of power) and other health complications. • Measurement, recording and monitoring are important. • Working with a coach, exercise physiologist and sports dietitian can be beneficial for maximising your goals and minimising risks.
References: Garthe, I., Raastad, T., Refsnes, P. E., Koivisto, A., & Sundgot-Borgen, J. (2011). Effect of two different weight-loss rates on body composition and strength and power-related performance in elite athletes. Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab, 21(2), 97-104. Knechtle, B., Wirth, A., Baumann, B., Knechtle, P., Rosemann, T., & Oliver, S. (2010). Differential correlations between anthropometry, training volume, and performance in male and female Ironman triathletes. J Strength Cond Res, 24(10), 2785-2793. doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e3181c643b6 Peterman, J. E., Lim, A. C., Ignatz, R. I., Edwards, A. G., & Byrnes, W. C. (2015). Field-measured drag area is a key correlate of level cycling time trial performance. PeerJ, 3, e1144. doi: 10.7717/peerj.1144 Sedeaud, A., Marc, A., Marck, A., Dor, F., Schipman, J., Dorsey, M., . . . Toussaint, J. F. (2014). BMI, a performance parameter for speed improvement. PLoS One, 9(2), e90183. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0090183 Swain, D., P. (1998). Cycling uphill and downhill. Sportscience, 2(4). sportsci.org/jour/9804/dps.html
*No guarantee of accuracy is made from these calculations based on an article by Swain, P (1998) on sportsci.org and using estimated frontal surface areas.
Peter Herzig Centred Nutrition was founded by Peter Herzig (APD). Peter is a qualified Dietitian and Accredited Sports Dietitian who also has a degree in Exercise Science. Peter set up Centred Nutrition in Brisbane and the Sunshine Coast to focus on a client centred approach; as there is no one solution in nutrition that will work for everyone.
In closing – athletes of all shapes and sizes can complete a triathlon. I witnessed that first hand in October. For some, improving power- to-weight may offer performance benefits. For others, concentrating on a healthier diet around training and competition, plus completing some good training under a good coach may result in fat loss anyway.
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lined up for this dish for 30minutes while a Hawaiian lady made it, non-stop for the masses using a big wooden mortar and pestle in 30 degrees Celsius heat. It was worth the wait. This is a great recipe for summer - on those days that you are looking for a refreshing light meal or snack. You can easily make it into a bigger meal by adding a nice piece of barbequed fish and some brown rice. I have altered it to be easier to make at home or while travelling if you donâ€™t have access to a mortar and pestle.
P eter Herzig ÂŠ Shutterstock.com
N.B.: Green Papaya may not be suitable for women in the early stages of pregnancy.
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• ½ green papaya (skin removed) shredded or grated
• Prepare all your vegetables.
• 1 red capsicum finely sliced. • 4 diced tomatoes • 100g green beans cut into 2cm sections • 100g bean sprouts • 1-2 red chilli finely sliced with seeds (if you like it hot) • 1 ½ Tbsp fish sauce • 1 ½ Tbsp lime juice • 2 tsp minced garlic • 1 Tbsp of palm sugar syrup (sustainably sourced please) • 2 Tbsp roasted peanuts crushed • ½ bunch coriander or mint or Thai basil
• Mix together the fish sauce, lime juice, garlic and chilli • In a big container, throw in your papaya, capsicum, tomato and green beans • Pour the sauce over and sprinkle on the palm sugar •
To mimic the action of the pestle, you need to beat up your salad a bit - one way to do this is to mix the salad with a big spoon and squash down with a potato masher
• Add the bean sprouts and coriander or other herbs (no need to beat them up) and mix • Portion out your servings and sprinkle with the crushed peanuts. • Enjoy!
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Mr Percival: Hero. text by Dr. Mitch Anderson |photography by chris riordan
his is not an obituary, so much as the rambling musings of a sad friend. It’s also some reflections on a life lived fully, warts and all. I have hosted Craig, Lindell, Sam and Sienna at Shinbone (my clinic) since it opened and treated mind, body and spirits. I met Craig in 2000 at Ironman Australia, and he went on to transgress the Banyan Tree Sprint Finish rule in Hawaii in October of that year. I loved the man. I scolded him, massaged sore limbs and soothed raw nerves. And despite my best efforts, the worst happened. Craig Percival, 45 years of age, died as a result of a postoperative complication (a massive pulmonary embolus) that caused catastrophic global brain injury on Sunday
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the 4th of December 2016. Craig was a husband to Lindell, father to Sam and Sienna, and a son, a friend and a coach. He was also a hero to many. Hero: noun, a person who is admired for their courage, outstanding achievements or noble qualities. As with any hero, we gloss over the imperfections to round out our expectations of a hero’s epitome. He was a hero to many because of what he did on various triathlon courses around the globe. His palmares are extensive for endurance triathlon, cycling and running. But Craig was just a lovely guy with a big heart and some hidden scars.
-- 2nd place 2014 Ultraman World Championship -- Ironman PB 9:02 -- 3rd Ultraman Canada -- Four time Ironman Hawaii finisher -- 16 time Ironman finisher -- 8in8in8 Many athletes will have met Craig without knowing it was him. For over ten years he was an easy-smiling, gangly man fitting suits at the Aqua Shop tent at every Ironman and half around Australia. I don’t know how many times I heard him greet someone with a familiar: “Hello mate!” He and the wonderful Nicole gave personality to the brand and sold more Blue Seventy suits each day than plankton sucked into
Mr percival: HERo
whale’s maw! Despite his elite athletic background, Craig served everyone with care and attention. He knew that everyone’s race was important to them and projected sincerely that it was also important to him. This was a quality that made him a great coach. And a great friend. I was not only a close friend to Craig and Lindell, but I was also his sports doctor. I’ve asked Lindell, and she has consented to me revealing some medical details in the interest of helping others understand what happened to Craig and to try to make sense of this great loss. And to learn a bit about depression and it’s profound effect on Craig and our community.
Putting into plain language, Craig had a simple operation on his knee to assess and treat a loss of articular cartilage. He had a twenty cent sized piece of chronic arthritis where he loaded up his knee joint, especially while running. This was causing him daily and nightly pain, preventing him from living the active way he had chosen - impacting not only swimming, biking and running but also kicking the footy with Sam or bushwalking with his family. He wasn’t even in the hospital for a night, giving you an idea of how uncomplicated the operation was. Deep vein thrombosis can happen after this type of surgery, but the risk is very low (<1%). Higher risk candidates are given a blood thinner (LMWH), but this doesn’t impact on the incidence of a blood clot in the lungs (PE or pulmonary embolism). The risk of a fatal PE in someone like Craig (young, fit and healthy) is extremely rare. Having a big clot in the lungs is like putting a finger over a track pump, where your heart is the pump and your finger is the clot. The pump just stops, and it happens suddenly. He did not suffer after losing consciousness. Even though Craig’s pump stopped three minutes shy of the Alfred Hospital emergency department, his brain was left without oxygen for a critical period of about 30 minutes. He was given all possible life-saving treatment (CPR, body cooling and put on a heart-lung bypass machine called ECMO), but he never regained consciousness. After a week of waiting for him to wake, he donated his organs to lucky recipients and was left to pass. I want, at this juncture, to put in black and white a few facts - to put athletes and their husbands/wives/loved ones at ease about the risks of their continued participation in triathlon. Craig had a resting echocardiogram with expert sports cardiologist Andre LaGerche after 8in8in8, which was completely normal for an athlete. This PE had nothing to do with his heart - Andre called this a ‘freak occurrence’. Craig was also seen by a highly regarded vascular surgeon Adrian Ling about an unrelated matter, and his assessment of what happened to Craig was a ‘one-in-a-million’. Adrian suggested that he must have had some kind of thrombophilia, a blood condition that predisposed him to getting clots. Craig was most widely known for completing eight iron-distance races over
eight days in eight different states and territories Australia wide from March 6-13, 2016. I presume he had the idea when he was Everesting 8848m on Mt Donna Buang last year. He started this epic journey in Darwin in scorching heat, moving on in succession to Perth, Adelaide, Hobart, Sydney, Brisbane, before finishing in Melbourne. He completed this feat in the wee hours of the 14th of March with Lindell fussing around him like a protective hen (she is an adorable human). Craig was buoyed by achieving something that seemed on paper to be impossible, yet in his imagination was going to be just ‘difficult’. And, well, he should have been ecstatic- he had inspired not only a band of immediate athletes he coached but built a wider following of devotees in the process. What was an obvious success in the public eye was a different story in the background. It’s hard to contextualise the severity of this ordeal on Craig’s mind and body. He was a masochist in the true sense of the word. The pain he chose to endure was a complex choice for him and not one that I could fully understand. I told him he was bonkers for even starting! To give you an idea of what happened to his body, prior to his last Ironman in Melbourne, I assessed him, removed a number of toenails and drained massive blisters. He wasn’t completely oriented to time, place and person but I was satisfied he was compos mentis to proceed. On the bike ride, I used a long-acting local anaesthetic to numb the pain in his toes by blocking some nerves. On the run, he had suffered a full thickness tear to one of his quadriceps muscles, and I numbed that too. He battled on, running faster. I slept fitfully. Counter-intuitively, the sleep deprivation of the week caused him months of insomnia. The insomnia triggered short-term memory loss, and he had to write things down to remember. He coached on. Tried to recover. Lindell and his kids supported him, and they moved to a flat in the Docklands to focus solely on the coaching business (and his adventuring). His depleted body needed more time, but his mind was electrified with ideas. Unassisted north to south crossing of the country? Swimming Bass Straight? How to consolidate 8in8in8 as a brand? How to support his family, friends and athletes even more? Australian Triathlete |
This rushing state was evidence of his natural generosity and athletic prowess but also a ‘manic defence’. Craig had been suffering from this depressive symptom for years. He’d also thought about hurting himself, even killing himself. He’d shared this with me four years ago, and we’d worked on it extensively since then. He was an extremely strong willed man, with a tolerance to discomfort as high as anyone I’ve seen. This was his blessing and his curse. He had bound up all the misery and throttled it for years, not sharing the affliction with many. Craig really only truly felt relieved of his depressive symptoms when he was ‘doing’. Whether it was a coaching session or a brutal ‘Everesting’ on his bike (riding 8848m the equivalent of the elevation of the colossal mountain in one sitting), something he did more than once. Craig had tried medication over the years, but nothing worked like training. The rushing release of endorphins and temporary freedom from his demons.
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Craig truly was an original Stotanthe great Percy Cerutty’s mixture of the elements of a Stoic and a Spartan. Stoic: a person who can endure pain or hardship without showing their feelings or complaining Spartan: a citizen of the state trained in the discipline and honour of the warrior society. Sparta had a wall of men, instead of bricks. If only this Spartan had spoken earlier of his troubles, but he had remained a wall. If only he had been able to dispel the disease, been able to enjoy more the day-to-day of family and life. He had a great love for his family, but satisfaction in himself remained elusive - even though the record showed clearly he had achieved so much. He was in therapy, but it hadn’t unlocked all the dark places and given him sweet release. He deserved it more in life. But he has that release now.
Everyone will miss Craig, none more so than Lindell, Sam and Sienna. His family of athletes and friends will miss him acutely. It’s an immense loss of future potential - he could have physically achieved more, but more importantly helped so many athletes. I will miss him chronically - the weekly phone calls about patients/athletes. Busting his chops to come in and get another treatment. Having him complain that no-one treated him as hard as I did when he did come in! And remind me that I was only a couple of swim lessons away from vast improvement if I came to him for some coaching…I’ll be forever ordinary without him.
For anyone with depression or symptoms of anxiety, please seek help. Call Lifeline 131114. Call a local GP, get a mental health care plan and see a psychologist. Talk with your loved ones and trust their council.
Grief & Loss
Athletes can’t train and prepare for the loss of a loved one. When you have lost a significant person in your life the grief experienced can be intense.
Professional resources Psychology A psychologist can help you work through your loss. Appointments can be made to see Daniel Quin at Shinbone Medical. Julie can provide information about availability and Medicare rebates. LifeLine Phone and online support 13 11 14 www.lifeline.org.au BeyondBlue Support and information 1300 22 46 36 www.beyondblue.org.au
What is grief?
Grief can overwhelm our physical, emotional, or thinking processes. Athletes in particular can find themselves wanting to get back to “normal” and return to training and racing. But grief can be exhausting and disorientating. Feelings of sadness, anger, shock, irritable, numb, relieved are typical. These feelings can disrupt our sport, social, and work lives.
Grief is different for everyone and so we need to work through it in our own way. Athletes are good at reading their body. During periods of intense loss we need to attend to our mind. Friends and family can be a great support but time alone may also assist. It may be necessary to seek professional support and information.
SHINBONE MEDICAL 2/96 Macaulay Road North Melbourne, VIC 3051
PHONE 03) 9329 5454