December 14, 2018

How’s your Mental Fitness? By Jennifer Austin

Fitness is not only about the body, but the mind as well. Try a few of these mental fitness moves to boost inspiration and motivation.

Race! That’s right, compete! For some reason, as adults we sometimes think we can’t or shouldn’t be competitive or admit wanting to win. However, striving to be the best or wanting to place in your age group, paying attention to time splits and wanting to pass others on the course is perfectly acceptable in athletic competition. Go ahead; keep time on a stop watch, push hard, announce wanting to finish first or set a personal record!  Bringing some friendly competition into your exercise routine will peak interest and involvement as you’ll be less likely to miss a workout when your ego is on the line.

Hone leadership skills. Why not send an evite to your friends, family or co-workers inviting them to a specific location each week for an outing such as a beach walk or neighborhood bike ride. If you’re the leader, organizer or point person for the group, you’ll be guaranteed to show up! With a meager 15-20 minute time investment each week, you could send fun fitness email tips to club members every so often, send links to healthy recipes, offering fun home-made prizes for the most improved or most consistent participant each season or year will also maintain interest. Have some fun, keep it light hearted and on task. Host a wrap up pot luck at the park once a quarter or once a year, invite spouses and others to expand the group. The momentum that builds toward wellness will keep the group (and you) on track, as well as setting new fitness goals.

Take in a change of scenery. For example, pack your bike and heading to a neighboring town or city for your regular Saturday ride will eliminate exercise staleness. Carpooling with friends to a different area of town for our long run is also a fun option to mix up the mundane same old running route. Conduct a search online for information pertaining to the specific activity, including roads, and safety notes, then invite some friends and embark on a fitness focused road-trip. Having to refer to a map or notes on the new area, along with new and different scenery will keep you engaged and interested.

Triathon Tip: Running fast off the bike by Mark Kleanthous

Competing in triathlon takes specific training.

See listed 4 of my best tips for running fast off the bike:

1.  A back-to-back session is your best way to stimulate running fast and effortlessly straight after a cycle ride.
A threshold bike which should be very hard @ 95%+ and take 30-55 minutes on the same course each time to compare changes in fitness. Choose flat courses where you will not need to stop and keep your heart rate high all the time, on hilly courses your heart rate goes high then drops too low on the downhill’s for this type of session. Many people run faster after these sessions. By running very fast for 400 after the bike it should make the actual race pace seem a lot easier.

Ironmate suggests 2×400 2×600 1×800 2×600 2×500 2×400 = 5,800 m

Short recovery between each interval should only be 20-30 seconds so you only partially recover to simulate race conditions.

2. Pushing a slightly bigger in training also helps. The idea is when you run off the bike in a triathlon it is much easier. However, this should not be done at the end of a bike to run session during a race.

3. Cadence running also helps. What stops you running fast after the bike is length of stride so to overcome this increase your stride with a shorter cadence. Part of your drills should include shuffle cadence high leg turnover but short strides, it takes a while to get good at them, but not many people do them, just like one legged riding on the turbo to improve economy.

4. Refrain from drinking fluid the last 5 minutes of the bike. Another problem with not being able to run fast straight after the bike is drinking in the last 5 minutes of the bike or in the first few minutes of that run, this only puts more stress on your body resulting in you slowing down or taking a lot longer to get going. Another quick note: don’t drink unless you are thirsty in the final 10 minutes of the run because this fluid will not be absorbed until you have crossed the finish line and can slow you down.

Mark Kleanthous has competed in more than 450 triathlons and has competed as an elite and recorded some of the fastest T1 & T2 transition times overall. Mark Kleanthous has competed in triathlons for 30 consecutive seasons and crossed the finish line in more than 450 triathlons including 35 ironman events. He is the author of The Complete Book of Triathlon Training and is a full time sports and nutrition coach. Mark can be contacted via his web site www.ironmate.co.uk

5 Tips to Better Racing by Kristie Cranford, CPT

Knowing how to race is just as important as logging all your training. There are specific actions to take, and just as important, specific actions to avoid before you toe the line. Here are your 5 expert tips to better racing:

Do train within your ability

If you truly want to exceed in racing, do train within your ability.  Find the race distance and estimated time that fits within your current or achievable ability.  Training for a pace you cannot realistically achieve can lead to burnout and injury.  Training for a distance your life schedule does not allow time for can lead to burnout and unnecessary stress.  You want to enjoy the training process, not stress about it.  Set yourself up for success, not failure.

Don’t do anything new race day

Experiment with food, drink, clothing, shoes, and everything well before race day.  Have it all down to a science.  You want to be a practiced well-oiled machine race day and not risk digestive, energy or clothing issues.

Don’t start out too fast

Don’t burst out of the gate with all you have, once that energy is expelled you will never get it back.  On the back end of the race you’ll come up short with the extra energy burned during an over exuberant start.

Do pick the right race for you

If you have a specific goal in mind, find a race that will help you to reach your goal.  Find one with an optimal course and entrant size to assist you.  A race that is too crowded or has a lot of elevation challenges may be a fun race, but may put too many odds against you.

Do allow for rest between races

Allow your body recovery time between races.  Your body gets stronger and repairs at rest and recovery.  Too much racing will lead to declining performance, burnout and injury.

This article is written by Kristie Cranford, CPT. A wife, mother, multiple cancer survivor and competitive athlete, Kristie is an ACE Certified Personal Trainer as well as a Certified Running/Triathlon Coach for PRS FIT. Living in Las Vegas, she is 2012 Coolibar sponsored athlete, 2013 Training Peaks Ambassador and Raw Elements Sunscreen Ambassador. Contact information: Email: CoachKristieLV@yahoo.com, http://www.coachkristie.com, www.prsfit.com.