Warming up and Cooling Down.CapTex

Importance of Warming Up and Cooling Down

Warm-Up and Cool Down: The Basics

We know that each workout should start with a warm-up and end with a cool-down, but more often than not, athletes tend to skip one or both. Especially when pressed for time. Not incorporating a warm-up and cool-down into your training can be detrimental to your overall performance when it comes time for race day. While also puts you at the disadvantage of a much higher risk of injury. Just like giving your car time to warm up before cruising at 65 mph, your body needs this time to get in a higher gear for more intense workouts or fitness activities. Keep reading to know the importance of warming up and cooling down during your CapTex Tri training.

Why You Should Warm-Up

A warm-up before a training session or race is essential for preparing your body and mind for a workout session. The main point of a warm-up is to increase your body core temperature and muscles. Warming up will not only help you to perform better, but it will also protect your body from injury. A good warm-up gets your blood flowing and gives you a chance to get energized for the rest of your session. It also helps increase the range of motion to your joints and muscles, which should allow your muscles to feel less stressed and stiff when you start. A dynamic warmup should aim to increase blood flow to the areas which will be working and to wake up the nervous system throughout the body.

A guideline to a general warm-up routine would include:

Jogging, biking, etc. for about 5 minutes to just get your blood flowing and get those muscles and joints moving. You want to work at a comfortable pace that’s easy to moderate. For the bike, a good warm-up should consist of five to 10 minutes of easy spinning, and then slowly increasing to the gear you wish to complete your session in. This really helps “open up” your body before getting into the more strenuous part of your workout.

Why You Should Cool-Down

Don’t come to an abrupt stop when completing your exercise, especially if it has been high intensity. Instead, you should cool-down by exercising at a lower intensity than the main session to bring your body temp and heart rate back down to pre-exercise levels. The cool-down should last around five to 10 minutes no matter what discipline you are training for that day. Cooling down helps to gradually decrease your heart rate and get rid of the metabolic waste from your muscles.
Mentally, cooling down also allows you some space to reflect on your performance and gives you some time to set you up for the rest of the day. Don’t underestimate the importance of this! Pro tip: Add some stretches to your cool down while your muscles are warmed up for one of the best ways to improve your overall flexibility and mobility while also reducing post-workout pain.

Bottom Line

Group Warming Up and Cooling DownAdding a warm-up and cool down into your fitness routine is a simple, yet proven way to maximize your benefits when working out. The warm-up gives your body a chance to prepare for your session while the cool-down then helps you focus on slowing your breathing and return to your normal heart rate. Rather than seeing it as an optional part of your workout, think of warming up and cooling down as part of your session to get the most out of all the hard work you’ve put in!

Beat the Heat! Training tips for the summer

Beat the Heat: Tips for Training this Summer

Summer is setting in, take precautions when adjusting to training in the heat.

Even with the occasional summer thunderstorms, temperatures in Central Texas consistently hit the mid-90s. High temperatures won’t keep you from training, so you need to make some adjustments. Training in the heat does have some benefits, but being smart and altering your schedule/plan will help uphold your training regimen, and continue without any bumps. Incorporate these 5 tips for training in the heat to be prepared for the Virtual CapTex Tri, or your next race.

Ease Into It

Give yourself some time to get used to the temperature adjustment. Although some athletes have less trouble adapting to training in warmer temps, that may not be the case for you. If you know you struggle with adapting to training in the heat, it’s important to take baby steps. At first, shorten your runs or rides as you adapt to handle the heat. Then, work your way up to the distance you are training for.

Listen to Your Body

You know your body better than anyone. Paying attention to the way you feel while out on a run or ride is the first thing to do in establishing a baseline for keeping you cool as the temperatures soar during your training.  Early signs and symptoms of heat illness include fatigue, discomfort, lightheadedness, disorientation, and nausea. This will be your indicator of how you need to adjust the following in order to keep up with your tri training during these hot upcoming summer months.

Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate!

Hydrating on the CapTex Tri course!

Hydrating on the CapTex Tri course!

This is the most obvious and most over-looked tip for training in the heat. You know to hydrate in the summer months, but you don’t always do it. Perhaps you get caught up and forget during your day-to-day schedule. Even if you are hydrating, it may not be enough. It’s recommended that we drink 64 ounces of water a day. In the summer months that should increase, especially when training in the heat. Your body is losing fluids and you need to make it a priority to replace them. Don’t just drink water either, incorporate an electrolyte-enhanced drink.  Alternate between water and electrolytes. If you’re training in the heat you should aim for no less than 100 ounces of water/electrolytes every day. So start early, and drink up!

Train in the mornings/evenings

It’s no secret that the hottest part of the day is noon – 5:00 p.m. If you can avoid training during that timeframe – do it!  Your training should occur earlier in the mornings or later in the evenings during the summer months. Training early in the morning before work is your best bet. That’s the coolest part of the day. For those of you who love your sleep, try to move your workouts to an evening time like 7:00 – 8:00 p.m. It’ll be warm, just not as hot as midday. Bonus – without the sun angled directly over you like it would be in the middle of the day, there will be more shade on your run or ride.

Dress to Sweat

Runner in light-colored clothes to prevent over heating

Wear light, breathable clothing to combat the heat!

You’re going to sweat, so aim to wear light-colored, breathable clothing when training. Darker colored clothing attracts and absorbs more of the sun’s heat. Cotton shirts and shorts absorb and carry sweat, and can weigh you down. Wear light-colored, breathable clothing when training in the heat. The lighter colors will reflect the sunlight and not absorb as much heat. The same goes for breathable clothing. The fabric is less absorbant so you’ll wick away sweat and prevent your clothes from weighing you down. This allows your body to stay cool and work more efficiently.

Run/bike on the Trails

Hit the trails! The pavement’s temperature can soar as high as 140 degrees when you’re running or cycling. This heat can last well into the evening. Visit some of the many local trails for your next run or ride. The shade from the trees helps keep the temperatures down. There’s often little-to-no vehicle traffic. The ground is softer than the hot concrete. Often times there’s a creek or river nearby that you can jump in if needed. Check out some favorite shaded spots to train from Jack’s Generic Tri. Bonus – the trails will make you a better runner/cyclist!

As you can see, there are many ways to beat the summer heat and stay in shape. Use these tips to stay cool this summer and continue to tackle your triathlon goals.

Why You Should Wear Sunglasses When Riding Your Bike

Why You Should Wear Sunglasses When Riding Your Bike

Wearing sunglasses when riding isn’t just for looking cool

In addition to looking hip, wearing sunglasses regularly can have several benefits. This applies to running, hanging at the beach, driving a car, and especially when riding your bike. If you have some sweet specs that make you look cool, all the better! We recommend the UA Igniter II Sunglasses by Under Armour.

Protectionprotecting her eyes during a bike ride!

  • Dust and debris – You will encounter visible and non-visible projectiles whether you’re riding the trails or commuting to work. Wearing sunglasses when riding your bike to protect your eyes from flying debris might be the most important reason. Flying debris doesn’t care if you’re riding solo or with a group. Cars kick up rocks, bugs are everywhere, even other cyclists can kick up debris on the side of the road. Dust is everywhere. It’s often stirred up by cars, other riders, or Mother Nature. Glasses won’t protect you from all the dust, but it’ll surely help. If you wear shades when riding then you know you have to clean them after every ride.
  • UV exposure – Repeated exposure to UVA and UVB radiation from the sun will have negative consequences on your vision. Protecting your eyes is critical to the short-term, and in this case, the long-term health of your eyes. Make sure your lenses are polarized and have a coating that absorbs the sun’s rays. Lenses also need to be a neutral color, not crazy tints and extreme colors. Your goal is to protect your eyes while replicating what your eyes see naturally.

Safety

  • Clearer view – The correct lenses will help clear your view when cycling. Cyclists have a large amount of information to process when riding. You’re watching for vehicles, intersections, signaling turns, avoiding potholes, tracking other cyclists and runners, the list goes on. Any time you can eliminate distractions you free up the ability to pay attention and process more information. Proper lenses will also help reduce the sun’s glare. Glare could shine in your eyes from street signs, windows on buildings, or the hoods of cars. Proper fitting sunglasses will also reduce the amount of wind that hits your eyes. Wind alone can cause dryness and irritation when riding.

Next time you’re logging some miles for your CapTex Tri training, be sure to wear a pair of sunglasses when riding your bike. Even a cheap pair will provide protection until you can get a pair that you’ll love. Taking care of your eyes now will pay dividends down the road.

Swim Faster with Fins

Swim Faster with Fins

Use fins during your swim training to become faster in the water

Do you want to improve your kick strength, ankle flexibility, body position, and increase your speed in the water? If you’re thinking, duh, try adding fins to some of your swimming workouts for your upcoming tri! With the right amount of training and the right tools, you’ll be on track to improve your swimming abilities for CapTex Tri in no time.

Why you should use fins

Wearing swim fins increases the amount of resistance your muscles experience as you kick, guaranteeing you’ll put your leg muscles to full use. Stronger legs and the additional strength will carry over into normal swimming when you’re not wearing your fins.use fins to become faster in the water.

Another benefit of using fins is improved ankle flexibility. This stems from the extra force the fins place on your ankles as you kick. Increased ankle flexibility will result in a more efficient flutter kick through better angles of attack in the water. When you are unable to fully flex your ankles into a streamlined position the ankles remain somewhat bent, catching water instead of propelling the body through it.

Do you have some other new swim equipment? This Rookie Tri blog shows you how to incorporate other swim equipment into your triathlon training.

Technique-focused workout

You’ll want to focus on a slow-motion, over-exaggerated flutter kick. During this workout, focus on slowing down the kick cycle and dramatically increase your range of motion. The over-exaggerated technique allows swimmers to more easily tune into ankle flexion and proper body alignment throughout the kick. As a bonus, this drill is also quite taxing on the legs and core – the increased workload of a large kick also makes for a great strength-building exercise.

2 Rounds

use fins to become faster in the water2 x 25 over-exaggerated flutter kick (with kickboard)
4 x 25 freestyle, easy
2 x 25 over-exaggerated flutter kick (no kickboard)
4 x 25 freestyle, mid-level effort
2 x 25 over-exaggerated flutter kick (with kickboard)
4 x 25 freestyle, easy

Free Mother's Day Coupon Book from CapTex Tri

Free Mother’s Day Coupon Book from CapTex Tri

Surprise the triathlete mom in your life with this free, downloadable Mother’s Day Coupon Book

What do you give the woman who gives you everything? Mom’s do it all from sunrise to sundown all day, every day, and we think they deserve a little more appreciation. If you have trouble coming up with creative ideas mom will love, you’ve come to the right place.  Here’s the perfect gift for the ultimate tri mom to make her feel special this Mother’s Day. Luckily, homemade gifts are a guaranteed shoo-in for Mom and fun for the kids to make! Get ready to make mom feel extra special and loved this year with this free CapTex Tri coupon book for Mother’s Day.

Get a sneak peek of what Mom can expect in her Mother’s Day Coupon Book!

1. Wash Her Bike
2. Join Mom for a Run
3. Tri Day – Free Pass of Uninterrupted Training for the Day
4. Post-Run or Ride Foot Massage
5. Go for a Ride Together — try these great introductory places to ride around Austin from The Rookie Tri gang!
And many more! Plus, the best part about these coupons is they don’t expire!

Pro tip: Use these coupons during your training for your upcoming tri for some extra training time thanks to the family this year. Then, enter your email to download the Mother’s Day Coupon Book! With these awesome options, it may be tough for which one mom chooses to use first. If you need some extra help putting your coupon book together, use these instructions as your guide!

Click here to download your Mother’s Day Coupon Book!

Free Mother's Day Coupon Book from CapTex Tri

And there you have a free Mother’s Day coupon book! We hope your book turned out well and we’re sure mom will love it. Happy Mother’s Day to all the incredible moms out there, we hope you enjoy the training time you’ll get from this Mother’s Day coupon book!

29th Annual CapTex Tri Canceled

Austin’s only downtown triathlon, CapTex Tri, canceled

Thank you for your interest in the 29th annual CapTex Tri presented by Life Time Fitness. We absolutely love Austin’s only downtown triathlon and were ready for another magnificent Memorial Day weekend with triathletes from across the country. We are so thankful to all the participants, volunteers, and event partners who join us every year. Let’s get the bad news out of the way so we can get to the good news.

Unfortunately, as a result of mandates by local/state governments and the recommended CDC guidelines, we are forced to cancel the CapTex Tri scheduled for May 25th. And, unfortunately, postponement is not a viable option based on permitting and venue availability. We know that CapTex Tri being canceled is disappointing and understand the time dedicated to training for your event. Please know that this cancellation was made with the safety of the entire community in mind. We appreciate everyone’s flexibility and understanding.

The Good News

All registered participants can transfer to one of our upcoming triathlons at no cost or request a full refund. Events that are open to transfer include:

Transfer

If the event you transfer to is also canceled we will offer transfers/refunds via a similar process. Participants who wish to upgrade distances at Kerrville Tri or 2021 CapTex Tri will need to pay the difference in registration for that distance. That request can only be filled after the transfer to the original distance is complete.

Refund

All merchandise and USAT one-day purchases will be refunded for the event, regardless of transfer or refund request. If you select to transfer you will receive a merchandise refund notice from EventDog.com before you receive instructions to transfer your registration to another event. To process everyone we need all responses no later than Friday, May 29, 2020. Please note the refund and transfer process will take up to two weeks for us to complete.

Participants may request a full refund if they do not wish to transfer registration to any of the above events. Current virtual participants will be refunded and are invited to join in the new FREE virtual event that will launch next week. We ask that all participants submit their request by Friday, May 10th. Anyone who does not fill out the request form will be automatically transferred to next year’s CapTex Tri at no cost.

Every participant should receive an email with details on how to complete this process. If you didn’t please check your spam folder. If you still can’t find it, email info@captextri.com and we are happy to resend you the link.

More Good News: Free Virtual CapTex for Everyone!

We will also offer a free virtual triathlon/duathlon to all participants and the entire triathlon community. There will be fun incentives, free downloadable personalized bibs, and finisher certificates. The free virtual event will launch next week, so keep an eye on your inbox!

We look forward to seeing you soon and will continue to post blogs and social media on triathlon, training, and everything you need for a healthy and happy lifestyle.

Austin Premier Virtual Triathlon!

Race CapTex Tri from anywhere in the world!

We know how hard all of our participants have trained for the CapTex Tri presented by Life Time Fitness to not be able to take to the course this coming Memorial Day Weekend.  We think all your efforts still deserve some acknowledgment and praise. It’s time to finish what you started and show off your skills by completing the Free 2020 Virtual CapTex Tri. This event is open to the public so be sure to challenge your friends and family to join you!

Completing a virtual triathlon is great motivation to accomplish your fitness goals and commit to healthy living habits! And, besides feeling good about yourself, you will also receive a downloadable personalized bib, finisher certificate, and digital finisher medal.

Participants will have the option to complete either the sprint or olympic distance events. If you do not have access to a place to swim you can complete the event as a duathlon. Participants will track their distance and time using their watch or a smartphone app.

Sprint Tri: 750 meter swim, 12.3 mile bike, 3.1 mile run

Sprint Duathlon: 2 mile run, 12.3 mile bike, 3.1 mile run

Olympic Tri: 1500 meter swim, 24.3 mile bike, 6.2 mile run

Olympic Duathlon: 4 mile run, 24.3 mile bike, 6.2 mile run

Registration is open for the Free CapTex Tri from April 29th through Monday, May 25th. You can submit your results through May 29th, the Friday after registration closes. The official results page with finisher certificates will be updated on April 28th, May 12th, and May 29th.

Want to take the challenge to the next level? Complete the Rookie Tri Virtual and the CapTex Virtual Triathlons by their respective dates and you will earn this limited edition Back-t0-Back digital finisher medal! Registration is open for the Free 2020 Virtual Rookie Triathlon from through May 3rd.

How to Participate

With this virtual tri, you can do it all at once or can complete each segment of the triathlon on your own schedule. For example, you can do part of the swim on Monday, part of the run on Wednesday and part of the bike on Friday. You can do each part in a location and time that’s convenient for you. Even if you weren’t planning on joining us for CapTex Tri, now is the chance to put yourself to the test at the pace you’re comfortable with.

  1. Register for the event on EventDog.com.
  2. Follow the link in the confirmation email to personalize & download your bib.
  3. Document your journey with a before and after photo. Optional but totally encouraged!
  4. Swim (Run), Bike & Run!
  5. Keep track of your time with your watch or a smartphone app like MapMyFitness. Complete your distances indoors or outdoors during the time frame.
  6. Post your results before May 29, 2020, to the link in your confirmation email.
  7. Connect with us on Social! Tag your photos on Instagram & Twitter with #RookieTriVirtual

 

 

 

6 Essential Skills You Need to Know for Race Day

Essential Race Day Skills You Need to Know for Your Upcoming Tri

Leave no room for surprises during your upcoming tri with these essential race day skills you need to know

Despite all the planning and prepping to make the morning of your tri go perfectly, we all know that some things are out of our control. Expected the unexpected and prepare yourself by mastering these essential race day skills to handle whatever comes your way on race day.

How to Fix a Dropped Chain

6 skills to know before race day

Get off the bike and steady it in an upright position against something sturdy. To add slack to the chain, push the rear derailleur toward the pedal (forward or inward), and then use your other hand to free the chain from the chainrings or pedals. Line the chain back up with a chainring and cassette to put the chain back in place. Lastly, lift the rear of your bike a few inches of the ground and give the pedals a few turns to allow the chain to find its gear. This seems insignificant, but it’s an important step to keep your chain from more wear and tear throughout the rest of your ride.

How to Ride in the Rain

Check the weather on race morning to see if you should be prepared to ride in the rain. Throughout the course, avoid standing water. You never know what could be underneath a puddle, and you don’t want to risk a flat tire in wet conditions. Also, be on the lookout for rainbow-colored oil patches to avoid slipping. Stay within your comfort zone, and take your time and be cautious around corners to prevent losing control. Last but not least, bring some protection for your eyes! Hopefully, you do this when out for any ride, but you will be glad you did in the case of riding in the rain.

How to Ride While Taking a Drink

You’re bound to get thirsty during the bike portion, so be prepared to ride with one hand during a race. Practice makes perfect. During your training, practice this race day skill by removing one hand at a time to build up your confidence. Start with shorter distances, and before you know it you’ll be pro at riding with one hand. This will allow you to eat, drink and signal to other riders while making your way to the finish line.

How to Sight in the Water

To avoid swimming a further distance during your tri, sighting is an essential race day skill you should practice before an open-water swim. You need to look where you’re going every few strokes to make sure you are staying within the buoys. The best method of sighting is to incorporate glancing forward before you go to take a breath. It is recommended to sight every 2 – 3 strokes, but in order to find what works best for you, you will just have to practice. Pro tip: Look at the swim course before-hand to see if the course goes clockwise or counter-clockwise, then you’ll know to stay on the right or left side of the buoys.

How to Look Over Your Shoulder on the Bike

Once you perfect riding with one hand, you’ll be ready to look over your shoulder during your ride. It’s important to be aware of your surroundings during a ride to keep yourself, and others around you safe. It’s all about shifting your weight correctly and keeping your knees, pelvis, and front-wheel facing forward. We advise performing this drill in a parking lot, or on an empty street to make sure you can still ride straight while turned around.

How to Change a Flat

Follow these 10 simple steps to fix a flat, and you’ll be back in the race in no time.

1. Pull over and find a safe place off the road to change tire
2. Remove the wheel from the bike.
3. Remove the tire with levers from the wheel
4. Check your tire for large punctures or sharp items
5. Check the rim of the wheel for anything that might have punctured through the rim tape
6. Pop one side of the tire back over the rim of the wheel
7. Put the new tube back inside tire
8. Push the free tire wall back onto the rim
9. Inflate the new tube.
10. Put the wheel back on the bike.

Once you’ve conquered these essential race day skills you need to know for your upcoming tri, there will be nothing in your way as you head for the finish line!

6 Tactics to Reduce Pre-Race Jitters

Pre-race jitters are bound to happen, calm them with our advice

Whether you’re an experienced athlete or brand new to the sport, pre-race jitters affect all athletes. Don’t worry, this is normal! You’re excited, chatting with old friends and making new ones, scurrying to make your transition perfect, anxious to get in the water, checking off items on your to-do list. You’ve trained for this moment and want everything to go as smoothly as possible. So do we! That’s why we’ve compiled a list of six tactics you can use to calm those pre-race jitters.

Plan race morning the night before

Take the time to plan out race morning when you’re not in a rush to beat the traffic to get Downtown. Follow this general advice and make race morning as smooth as possible! Completing this the day before ensures you have all the time you need. Start with leaving your house and layout everything you’ll need to return home with your CapTex Tri medal! Think about transition, the swim, the bike, the run. Items to focus on: race bib, wristband, hydration, and nutrition. If you’re a visual person, make a list and check it twice.

Remember your training

You’ve spent hours in the pool, logged miles on the bike, completed several brick workouts. You’re ready for this! It can be easy to think about what’s ahead, but it’s just as easy to think about what you’ve accomplished so far. If you have a game plan, go over that in your head. Focus on your breathing, make it mimic when you’re in the water. Think about your technique in the water. Look for items to focus on when you sight. If you had a particularly good bike ride, think about what went right on that ride.

Listen to music

This is used by many triathletes! You could jam out to the tunes playing on course or you could throw some headphones on and click play on your favorite album. You can’t use headphones during the race, so if you want a song to get stuck in your head make sure it’s one of the final songs you hear. Pro tip: if you find yourself with some extra time, find a quiet spot to sit down, listen to some tunes, close your eyes, and relax.

Complete the pre-race warmup

Remove pre-race jitters by actually getting your blood flowing! Get with a group of athletes, or complete your own pre-race warm-up. You’ll get loose and start to feel good. Really focus on the activity you’re doing, make your form as perfect as possible. Zeroing in on what you’re doing keeps you from thinking about all the what-ifs that lead to pre-race jitters. Pro tip: add a deep stretch after the warmup to further loosen your muscles.

Get a friend to complete CapTex with you

Has someone trained with you and showed you the ropes? Great! Have them join you in Downtown, ATX for CapTex Tri! Having someone you know with you race morning brings familiarity. You’re more likely to be comfortable when they’re around. They can help you remember this pre-race jitters list! You could also talk about where you’ll celebrate and what you’ll eat/drink when you leave the finish line party.

Invite friends and family to cheer for you

This is our favorite remedy for pre-race jitters. They don’t have to complete CapTex Tri, but invite friends and family to join you Downtown so they can cheer for you! They can make signs, take photos/video, and cheer for you at several different locations, including swim start, transition, and the finish line. Pro tip: you can hang out with friends and family before your swim wave begins.

Give Aquajogging a Try

Mix up your training routine with some new workouts and give aquajogging a try

What is aquajogging?

Aquajogging is a deep water form of running. Running in the water is great for those who are looking to up their cardiovascular capacity without wear and tear on their muscles from running on pavement.

Aquajogging is sometimes associated with injury but it is also a great addition to any training routine. It is also a great way to escape the heat during the summer months.

What you need to give aquajogging a try

How to get started

Give Aquajogging a Try

Strap the belt around your waist. You want to make sure the belt stays around your waist and does not ride up too high your ribcage. Once you have your belt on and are in the pool simply get into the running position as you would on land.

Aquajogging is much slower so it is best to base your workouts on time, hence the waterproof watch.

To keep from getting bored run laps up and down the lane. But if you are limited on space you can stay in one spot or jog in small circles. You can increase the difficulty of the workout by increasing your cadence. 

Some advice from experience

Stay conscious of your form, make sure your arms don’t turn into a doggy paddle.

Don’t lean forward. You need to keep your body as upright as possible. So remember to check in on yourself.

Bring your knees up higher than you would on land.

Don’t overdo it on your first session. 20 – 30 minutes is a good Aqua jogging session to start out with.

Remember, this is not just treading water.

Aquajogging is as hard as you want to make it. If you find yourself slacking, do interval workouts.