Last week we asked you about your priority race distance in 2021. The results surprised us.
11,237 TriathlonWire readers completed our survey, and 41.9% of you said that a full-distance IRONMAN would be your key race this year, while 32.6% plan to focus on a 70.3 IRONMAN.
Candidly we would have guessed that these numbers would have been swapped, with 70.3 being more popular. That wasn’t the case.
With 74.5% of you aiming for the longer distance races, it’s no wonder that IRONMAN events are selling out so quickly.
METRICS THAT MATTER
We’re faced with endless choices of devices, software and other gizmos that promise to measure and record every variable of our training and racing. But what metrics matter most for self-coached triathletes? How do we avoid tracking irrelevant data and, instead, focus on what can make us faster?
In this podcast coach Mikael Eriksson outlines 10 metrics that you should consider tracking and describes how to choose what works best (your choices will depend on whether you’re a beginner, intermediate or advanced triathlete).
He categorizes your options into 3 key areas: process, performance and recovery metrics, which will help you choose the measurements that make the most sense for your program. Give this podcast a listen to gain a clearer understanding of how to measure and manage your training progress.
Did you know that many static stretches diminish your swimming performance, make you weaker and hinder explosive movement? It’s believed that pre-workout static stretches significantly impair your strength by loosening muscles and tendons, making them less responsive to move quickly when called upon.
Instead, start adopting a dynamic stretching routine.
For an in-depth explanation of why dynamic stretching is superior and what exercises and movements to perform, check out this excellent article by Swimming Science.
THE BEST INTERVALS
HIIT bike intervals. Love’em or hate’em, there’s no doubt that – when performed properly – they make you faster and more powerful.
But which type of intervals are best for improving your sustained power? Elite cyclist and coach Dylan Johnson presents researched-backed data that helps answer this question.
In this video he explains why high intensity intervals are necessary for well-trained athletes, and helps you determine the ideal interval session format. You might be surprised by what length of interval yielded the greatest gains.
You know that full, deep sleep is critical for athletic recovery.
The science is clear: cooler temperatures at night significantly improve the quality of your sleep and enhance your recovery.
7 to 9 hours of high quality sleep will supercharge your training. Benefits include improved body composition, beneficial hormone release and optimized protein synthesis. Quality sleep even protects your heart.
Professional athletes, Olympians, and top age groupers swear by Chili Technology’s sleep cooling products.
If you’re serious about your training, then optimize your recovery by investing in your rest. TriathlonWire readers get an incredible 22% off by using CHILI22 at checkout. With their 90-day “Sleep Trial Guarantee”, there’s no reason not to give it a try!
Whey protein gets all the headlines, but another protein is gaining popularity for aiding in athlete recovery: collagen.
Collagen is the most abundant family of proteins found in the human body, critical for the health and function of connective tissue, bone, skin and even digestion.
Athletes are discovering that pre-workout supplementation of collagen peptides — combined with vitamin C — reduces pain and inflammation associated with intense training sessions.
Since natural collagen levels start to decline in our 30’s, masters triathletes might consider adding it to your supplement list for more consistent training and better performance.
Coach Jason Fitzgerald is passionate about strength training for his runners. However his athletes aren’t bodybuilders and don’t have hours to spend in the gym.
His solution is twofold. First he prefers exercises that prevent injury by focusing on hip and glute strength. Second he’s a proponent of simple, compound exercises that most runners are already familiar with.
However what we really liked about Jason’s approach is how he integrates these exercises into the routines of his runners. He “sandwiches” their runs between a dynamic warm-up and a strength routine. This allows strength training to become an integral part of nearly every workout, resulting in stronger, healthier and faster athletes.
- Ali’l Drive to Boylston Street
As we look towards the return to competition, be prepared for a very busy October (and potentially some hard choices). Who could have imagined the Hawaii IRONMAN, Chicago Marathon and a rescheduled Boston Marathon occurring on successive days? Will there be any overachievers who attempt all three?
- My Cousin Vinnie
If you need some inspiration for your next indoor trainer session, look no further than Bob Babbitt’s energetic conversation with 2x and current ITU World Champ Vincent Luis. This 31 year old French superstar is a favorite heading into the Tokyo Games. You’ll really love his story of transformation after moving to Iten, Kenya to live and train with the top east African runners!
- Tweet of the Week
We end this week’s edition with Brad Stulberg’s perspective on sustainable progress. It isn’t about being consistently great; it’s about being great at being consistent.