Posts

Race Day Countdown

By Angela Lilly

Here we are! You’ve had months of planning, training, learning, nutrition consumption and hopefully, great race day experiences in your blood. As soon as I wake up one week from race day, it’s called “race day countdown”.  We have many challenges, juggling family, career and triathlon training. Here’s some tips for this week.

  1. Get your gear ready now; make sure everything is working as it needs to and do this when you have the time.
  2. Make paper lists; write down what needs to happen every day this week as well as lists for Friday, Saturday and Sunday (if needed) by the hour.
  3. Plan your nutrition liquid and food; whatever it is, stash it at home and make sure you, nor anyone else, consumes it. Nothing worse than packing Friday night and your gel isn’t where you left it.
  4. I like to take my “race gear” out for a test run; everything from the wet suit to the bike with race wheels and whatever you are going to carry for nutrition to even my race day shoes carrying whatever nutrition I am planning to use. It just helps for race day when you are dumping out your bag at T2 and need to get dressed in seconds.
  5. Take care of yourself; you should have more time daily so fill that with “to do items” that are off your feet. I like to use my TP massage roller more and just sit on the floor and stretch while chatting with the kids and paying attention to our dog after school.
  6. Sleep and rest; I’ve set myself a firm bed-time and let those around you know what time this is. Open communication with my husband and kids let’s them know when I’m “on” and “off” duty. They are wonderfully supportive when they know.
  7. Pack the extras in a separate bag; I know what I’m going to race in BUT if it’s cold on Sunday then I might need something to keep my toes or fingers warm prior to the start or during the race. I like to keep all that packed in a separate bag so I’m prepared if I need it, but right now in my planning, I’m not counting on it.
  8. Independent support crew; Team Lilly is ready and with their experience, will rock out their race day with their plan just like I will with mine. If your goal on Sunday is more competitive, let them do their own thing and you do yours. If it’s less competitive, experience every hour together. There is a lot to do between the athlete meeting on Saturday right through to the awards presentations Sunday afternoon. They want you to be your best so go do it.

Barrelman like a Time Trial

By Angela Lilly

I have tried to keep triathlete growth both in mind and in training up to speed regularly over this season, however I feel it’s time to dig a bit deeper than social media and write this article.

The last month was a lot of planning of training and racing and life. We get used to racing by age group but MSC keeps us chasing new goals and challenges as they offer their unique “time trial start” at the Bracebridge triathlon. When I first started racing this years ago, I was concerned that I was in a 15-minute deficit and I had so many more challenges than my fellow friends/racers. Now, I’ve found strength in this format of race. Here’s some points to share about some points that you can pull from a TT race into Barrelman:

  1. The swim is really spread out in the most beautiful race water I have swum.
  2. The exit of the swim is exciting; lots of spectators and lots of bikes gone off the rack.
  3. The bike course is very positive and sportsman-like. I once found that I raced courses that I would call encouraging words to other racers as I passed them, or they passed me, and they would be silent. In MSC racing, it is wonderful. We must all pass through an imaginary beam of light as we walk over the starting mat that beams us up for a personal best day. In MSC racing, if there is a pass, both triathletes are encouraging to one another.
  4. The bike course is full, but it isn’t as tough to ride as bigger wave start races. It’s much more spread out, less chance you get caught in a drafting situation, safer, and if you pay enough attention, you can even follow the triathlete ahead of you and ride a good line (no pot holes or cracks in the road).
  5. The run makes you truly race your best with what you have left. You always know your pace depending on the distance; however, I have found TT races to push you beyond that zone. I find someone ahead of me and try to push my pace by 5 seconds. If I get passed, then I tuck in behind them and try to feel their strength to run better than I was (there are the triathletes that are always faster runners than me and those ones I have to let go because I don’t want to completely blow up). Don’t try to push it or race by yourself.  There are hundreds of people on course so make a friend and quickly talk. Find out where each other is at and help one another. MSC has so many great triathletes that have made me push it till the last second at the finish line. I hope I too, have done the same for others.
  6. The race truly isn’t done until the finish line and this is even more powerful when it is a time trial as you can’t possibly know if someone has beaten you by 10 seconds or 3 minutes. It’s up to you to push your limits till the final line. Sportstats will take care of the rest.

I treated my next race the same way and good things happened; personal best time!

Now that I am on to my final race of 2019 triathlon season in Ontario at Barrelman, I will race like a TT.  It will hurt but I will achieve more than I set out to achieve. What a great way to complete 2019!

Going on Vacation? Yes, you can still train!

By Shannon McNamara, Barrelman Ambassador

You know the drill, it is summer time. The kids are out of school. Your family is trying to plan a vacation. If you are like my husband and I, trying to plan vacations around the kids’ activities is bad enough, but throw in our training schedule…..forget about it.

I know that some people use their vacations as an opportunity to recover, but for us, we usually cannot afford to take that time off from training. So, we have just decided to embrace it. Training while on vacation can be a great thing, and here are the reasons why.

1. It gives you an opportunity to find your way around.

When traveling somewhere new, running or biking around the area really helps you get the lay of the land. You will find things you may not see from the car. You might find a cool trail, or restaurant, or attraction that is more difficult to see otherwise.

I remember traveling to Boston with my family once. We drove around forever trying to get to our hotel. We were so confused. One morning run later, I knew my way around the area and was able to navigate the rest of the trip.

2. It is rejuvenating.

Don’t all of your training routes get mundane? There are so many new things to see while you are on vacation. Beautiful sights and sounds that you aren’t used to. Having a change of pace and new scenery can really re-motivate you.

3. It can jump start your day.

Sometimes when you are on vacation, you have a lot of things on your bucket list. Sometimes those things don’t get checked off because everyone is slow moving in the morning. Getting up and starting the day with a workout, might be just what the whole family needs to get going for the day’s activities.

4. It can give you one-on-one time with your spouse, your child, or yourself.

Even on vacation, it is nice to have some quiet time with a special someone or just by yourself. I treasure the runs I have had with my husband or one or both of my daughters while on vacation. Those moments just add to the blessings and memories of the trip.