Posts

2021 CapTex Triathlon Ready to Showcase Downtown Austin

Austin’s only downtown triathlon set to welcome nearly 1500 triathletes

High Five Events, one of the largest privately owned event production companies in the United States, is ready to welcome triathletes to the 2021 CapTex Triathlon presented by Life Time during Memorial Day weekend. Nearly 1500 triathletes from 26 states have registered for Austin’s only downtown triathlon. 

The 29th annual CapTex Tri features a swim course in Lady Bird Lake, bike course through downtown Austin, and run course at Auditorium Shores. 2021 CapTex Triathlon will take place on Monday, May 31st.

CapTex is the quintessential Austin triathlon and I cannot wait to swim, bike, and run through the heart of Austin, passing multiple iconic landmarks and quirky local spots,” said Haley Koop, elite triathlete and 2018 Kerrville Triathlon Quarter Distance female champion. “CapTex is the perfect way to get a unique look at the city and a true feel for The Live Music Capital of the World!

2021 CapTex Triathlon has something for everyone

2021 CapTex Triathlon offers different divisions and distances for triathletes of all abilities. Age groupers are separated into five-year increments and begin with others in their age group. They are eligible for age-group awards. Open Division allows professional triathletes and elites to begin regardless of age, with a mass swim start. Open Division participants are not eligible for age-group awards. CapTex Tri also features Athena and Clydesdale categories. There are also aquabike and relay options for race day. The relay team can consist of two or three members and the aquabike completes the swim and the bike only.

Female triathlete gives a thumbs up after setting up her triathlon area at the 2018 CapTex Triathlon.

Event distances include:

  • Rookie triathlon – 300m swim, 12.3-mile bike, 2-mile run
  • Sprint triathlon – 750m swim, 12.3-mile bike, 5K run
  • Sprint aquabike – 750m swim, 12.3-mile bike
  • Olympic triathlon – 1500m swim, 24.3-mile bike, 10K run
  • Olympic aquabike – 1500m swim, 24.3-mile bike

“Everyone is excited for the return of CapTex Tri and to swim, bike, and run through downtown Austin,” said Jack Murray, co-owner of High Five Events. “These triathletes are ready to put their training to work and cross the finish line with the Austin skyline as their backdrop.”

Participants will receive custom 2021 participant shirts, finisher medals, water bottles, and swim caps. Everyone can relive competing in Austin’s only downtown triathlon thanks to professional timing and photography. Registration is still available and the final price increase occurs on Thursday, May 27th at 11:59 p.m. CST.

High Five Events Agrees to Multi-Year Partnership with Zone3 USA

Partnership names Zone3 USA the Official Triathlon and Swim Gear

High Five Events, one of the largest privately owned event production companies in the United States, announces a two-year agreement with Zone3 USA. The partnership makes Zone3 USA the Official Triathlon and Swim Gear of CapTex Triathlon presented by Life Time and Kerrville Triathlon Festival.

“We can’t wait to be back to racing and spending time with the endurance sports community,” said Ryan Dolan, President of Zone3 USA. “High Five Events has produced high-quality, community-based events for a long time and we’re excited to partner with them for CapTex Tri and Kerrville Triathlon.”

Zone3’s involvement

Zone3 USA, one of the most loved and chosen specialist sport brands around the world, is headquartered in Boulder, Colorado. The partnership means all participants will receive Zone3’s silicone swim caps that are long-lasting and eco-friendly. They will also host product demos at both expos and provide triathlon insight for blogs and social media.

“Zone3 is one of the most recognized brands in the world and this partnership will continue to elevate the profiles of CapTex and Kerrville Tri,” said Jack Murray, co-owner of High Five Events. “What really impressed us in our initial conversations with Zone3 was the depth and quality of their product line and their commitment to building a relationship with our endurance community.”

CapTex Tri will take place on Memorial Day, Monday, May 31st, in downtown Austin. Kerrville Triathlon will celebrate its 10th anniversary on September 25-26th, in Kerrville, Texas.

How to Set Up Your Transition Area on Race Day

Enjoy a smooth race morning when you properly set up your transition area

Properly setting up your transition area can help reduce the amount of time it takes for you to finish. Preparing ahead of time to transition from swimming to cycling to running can help you keep your composure and focus on what’s next. Follow the seven tips below to set up your transition area in a way that’ll benefit you on race day! Pro tip: this advice is even more important for first-timers who want to know what to expect at their first triathlon.

Make transition area compact and comfortable

Female triathlete gives a thumbs up after setting up her triathlon area at the 2018 CapTex Triathlon.

Be respectful of other triathletes and make your transition area compact and comfortable.

Be courteous to your triathlon neighbors! You don’t need to be crammed next to one another, but you also don’t get a 10-foot runway all to yourself. Make sure there’s a comfortable amount of space around you. Chat with the folks around you, make sure they have the space they need too. If you find out you both have different time goals and speeds, you might not even be in transition at the same time. Pro tip: remember where your transition area is by identifying your row or specific landmarks around it. If you have time, walk from all the different entrances and exits to your transition area to become more familiar.

Carry extra goggles

Nobody wants this to happen, but sometimes the rubber straps break when you least expect it. Being goggle-less is not a good start to race morning. Always keep an extra pair of goggles with your triathlon gear. Even if yours don’t break, it’s still a good idea to have an extra pair in case you can help someone you know who didn’t bring an extra pair.

Clip cycling shoes into your pedals

This tip is more for veterans, but there’s no reason you can’t do this! A great way to save time during the triathlon transition is to keep your cycling shoes clipped into your pedals. This maneuver takes a lot of practice. You must be comfortable slipping your feet in and bending over while riding to strap your shoes. If you do this, make sure the shoes are loose enough for your feet to slide in easily but not too loose that the straps come out.

Put bike in preferred gear

Ease into cycling when your bike is in the gear you want before racking it.

You’re in transition after the swim, switching out your gear. The last thing you want is to hop on your bike, leave your transition area, and start pedaling in the highest gear. Make sure your bike is in the gear that’ll allow for a smooth start to your ride. Adjust accordingly, depending on whether you’re starting uphill or downhill. Pro tip: make sure your saddle height is where it’s supposed to be before race morning.

Loosen your running shoes

Rack your bike and get ready for the last leg: the run. Make your running shoes are loose enough that you can easily slide in your feet. Unless you have amazing balance, it might be best to sit down and put them on. Especially if you have to tie your laces. But you can save even more time with elastic laces! Keep the resistance just right so the shoe is snug for running, but not so tight that you can’t get your foot in.

Practice your transition area before race day

This helps you nail down what works for you and what won’t work for you. Practice putting on shoes with elastic laces. Try leaving your shoes clipped into your pedals before you ride. Perfect the order in which you complete everything comfortably. The best time to do this is in the middle of a brick workout. These workouts most closely resemble race day and give you a good idea of how transition will unfold.

Simulate race morning

Complete a test run to ensure your transition area is perfectly set up.

Once your transition area is set up race morning, do a test run. You don’t have to physically put on and take off everything, but it helps to run through each transition. Make sure your shoes are loose. Check your bike’s gear. Place your nutrition and hydration where you can easily grab it. If you wear a hat and sunglasses on the run, put your shades in your hat so you don’t forget them. These are ways to reduce pre-race jitters. Here are six more tactics that can help with any butterflies!

This simple checklist will help you effectively set up your transition area on race day. It’ll allow for a more enjoyable race experience and possibly a faster time. Practice beforehand to make sure you’re comfortable with everything.

5 of the Best Multisport Watches for Competitive Triathletes

Read about 5 of the best multisport watches before your next purchase

With so many multisport watches on the market, it can be difficult to choose one that best fits your needs. Triathletes need a watch that can track swimming, cycling, and running. Ideally, it can track all three sports combined in a single event. The price spectrum for a triathlon-specific watch can range from $200 to $700+ and there’s no shortage of options. To help narrow the scope, we’ve chosen 5 of the best multisport watches that provide everything competitive triathletes need to train smart and race their best. Check out 5 of the best multisport watches below and order yours today with the available link! 

Garmin Forerunner 745 Triathlon Watch 

The Garmin Forerunner 745 is perhaps the most popular triathlon smartwatch that seamlessly tracks swim, bike, and run activities in a consecutive, user-friendly way. Even more ideal for triathletes and endurance athletes is the Forerunner 745’s capabilities to measure key performance metrics like VO2 max, cycling power, cadence, stride length, ground contact time, and overall training load.

  • Water rating: 5 ATM / Up to 50 meters 
  • Weight: 47 grams 
  • Battery life: Smartwatch mode Up to 1 week
  • GPS mode: Up to 16 hours (with music up to 6 hours)
  • Display resolution: 240 x 240 pixels

Breakdown

The Garmin Forerunner 745 is a perfect alternative for athletes who want all the features of the Forerunner 945 but without directional map guidance and not quite as long battery life. As with many of Garmin’s advanced smartwatches, the Forerunner 745 provides valuable metrics for distance athletes, such as aerobic and anaerobic feedback (which is especially useful for those training half-Ironman distance, full Ironman, and ultra-distance events). It’s also equipped with heart rate variability (HRV), which provides a real-time assessment of your body’s ability to train or race. 

If you’re looking for the best triathlon watch for the cost, the Garmin Forerunner 745 caters to all the data junkies’ needs at a sub-$500 price tag. Not only is it a robust multisport watch that packs an altimeter and global navigation satellite system (GNSS), but it’s equipped with Garmin’s array of lifestyle features, like music, safety tracking, Garmin Coach, Garmin Pay contactless payments, and smart notifications like emails, texts, and alerts.

COROS PACE 2 GPS Sport Watch

The COROS PACE 2 is an entry-level multisport watch that is designed with triathletes in mind. As a high-performance option that’s priced in the sub-$200 range, the PACE 2 is exceptionally lightweight and long-lasting. It can last up to 20 days before needing a charge.

  • Water rating: 5 ATM / Up to 50 meters
  • Weight: 35 grams
  • Battery life: Smartwatch mode: Up to 20 days
  • GPS mode life: Up to 30 hours (UltraMax GPS mode up to 60 hours)
  • Display resolution: 240 x 240 pixels

Breakdown

COROS PACE 2 is an impressive display of engineering that provides uncompromised performance in harsh conditions. Not only does it track performance metrics for swimming, cycling, and running workouts, but the watch’s Tri-mode tracks all three of these disciplines consecutively, which for the price, makes it one of the best multisport watches for triathlon events

COROS PACE 2 is a beautifully-designed triathlon watch that offers modern aesthetics. The screen size is large enough to see metrics at a glance easily but isn’t as bulky as other popular multisport watches. The silicone watch band option delivers a 50% weight reduction, making it great for shorter, time-trial events, and long-course racing.

Polar Vantage M Triathlon Watch

If you’re looking for a lightweight multisport watch with a minimalist look and feel, the Polar Vantage M offers entry-level pricing with top-rate performance. GPS-enabled and designed specifically for triathletes, you can track open water swimming, cycling, and running workouts. You can even track complete triathlon events with a single push of the button.

  • Water Rating: 3 ATM / Up to 30 meters 
  • Weight: 45 grams
  • Battery life: Smartwatch mode Up to 5 days
  • GPS mode life: Up to 30 hours
  • Display resolution: 240 x 240 pixels

Breakdown

The Polar Vantage M doesn’t stop at being a top-tier multisport watch. Athletes can track up to 130 different activities and 20 sport profiles along with customizable personal metric settings for each. The Polar Vantage M simplifies quantifying your training and seeing exactly how your workouts affect your body.

Polar’s Training Load Pro monitors the level of stress your training puts on your cardiovascular system (Cardio Load), including how strained you feel (Subjective Load). Triathletes who use a power meter can even see “Muscle Load” data. This is especially beneficial for high-intensity sessions, like short intervals sprints, and hill training.

Suunto 9 Baro GPS Multisport Watch

Touted for its GPS-enabled long battery life and atmospheric tracking capabilities, the Suunto 9 Baro is a high-performance multisport watch that’s designed for endurance athletes who demand longevity, accuracy, and versatility from their gear

  • Water rating: 10 ATM / Up to 100 meters 
  • Weight: 81 grams 
  • Battery life: Smartwatch mode Up to 14 days (Battery Saver mode 34 days)
  • GPS mode: Up to 120 hours
  • Display resolution: 320 x 300 pixels

Breakdown

Delivering features like race pacing, power cycling, barometer, elevation, navigation/orientation, weather, and GPS-enabled features, the Suunto 9 Baro is more than any triathlete needs. But for those who do more than triathlon, the Baro supports those who participate in ultrarunning, mountain and road bike cycling, extreme multisport events, mountaineering, and various multiday affairs.

The Suunto 9 Baro delivers the features you’d expect in a mountaineering-caliber “ABC watch” (Altimeter, Barometer, Compass), but it also tracks over 80 different activity profiles. When it comes to performance features, the Suunto 9 Baro is unquestionably one of the best multisport watches for serious endurance athletes who want accurate, in-depth data without the clutter of lifestyle features that other smartwatches deliver. 

Garmin fenix 6S Pro Multisport Watch

The Garmin fenix 6S Pro is the pinnacle of a high-performance multisport watch that provides everything you need for triathlon and beyond. Offering highly-resilient and sophisticated engineering designed for mountaineering, climbing, swimming, cycling, running, skiing, and even golfing, the Garmin fenix 6S Pro is a versatile multisport watch. It’s been tested to U.S. military specifications for thermal, shock, and water resistance. 

  • Water rating: 10 ATM / Up to 100 meters 
  • Weight: 61 grams
  • Battery life: Smartwatch mode Up to 9 days (Battery Saver mode 34 days)
  • GPS mode: Up to 36 hours (with music 10 hours)
  • Display resolution: 240 x 240 pixels

Breakdown

Providing a visual navigation system directly from the watch’s interface, the fenix 6S Pro leverages multiple GNSS (global navigation satellite systems) to track activity in most remote environments where GPS alone might not reach. You can see topographical maps and Garmin’s Trendline™ feature. This offers popularity routing to help you find the best local routes and pathways for training and expeditions alike.

The Garmin fenix 6S delivers a robust combination of multisport watch and smartwatch all in a single device. Besides lifestyle features like hydration tracking and advanced sleep monitoring, you can also view triathlon-specific metrics like Garmin’s PacePro pacing guidance, heat- and altitude-adjusted VO2 max, running dynamics, and recovery advisor.

The best multisport watch will always depend on individual preferences. Many successful triathletes only care about tracking swim-bike-run activities. Others like to have HRV, pulse oximeter, VO2 max, GNSS, altitude, and other advanced parameters. Investing in a multisport watch that caters to your unique needs takes considering your training and racing demands. You should factor in how much you’re willing to spend too. In the ream of triathlon, simple multisport watches can be found for under $200. But for something high performance, you can expect to pay closer to $400-500 on up.

Add these 1-Hour Bike Workouts to Your Training Plan

Stay on track with these 1-hour bike workouts for busy triathletes

Training for a triathlon is well-known for taking up a decent amount of time. Between swimming, cycling, running, brick workouts, and recovery your schedule can seem like a lot. Especially when you add in a family, career, and social life. The key to triathlon training is to be efficient. Strengthen your triathlon training with cycling sessions that are fast and effective. If you’re looking to save time, this list of 1-hour bike workouts is a great addition to your training.

Kitchen sink

Increase your strength with the kitchen sink workout.

In less than 60 minutes you can increase your strength with this routine. It involves five minutes of easy spin to begin followed by a 10-minute single-leg drill. Spin with one leg at a time while your other leg rests on a chair. Alternate legs and repeat. Follow that up with 10x 20-second all-out sprints with recovery spins in between for five minutes. The last 20 minutes of the routine involves a 20-minute time trial. Learn to build your mental toughness so you’re ready to push through the end of tough workouts.

Trainer speed pyramid

The purpose of this workout is to make you faster. The training is broken down into short intervals. This means if you give a hard effort for one minute during warm-up, the next minute is for recovery. The warm-up session lasts 15 minutes. The main set is 26 minutes long, divided into 2/2 minute, 4/4 minute, 3/3 minute, 2/2 minute, 1/1 minute on and off in producing cadence. Make sure you flush your legs after the main set. Focus on stretching your hip flexors. You can also use a foam roller for your sore muscles after the main set.

Menagerie

Add a core exercise at the end of your workout if you have extra time.

This workout involves a combination of single-leg drills, 100 cadence spin divided into 8 sections. The sections last for 15, 20, 25, 30, 30, 25, 20, 15 seconds respectively. It is recommended to maintain 100 RPM for the spin-up followed by 90 RPM recovery spin. The last chunk of the workout involves 5×15 seconds climbing action and two minutes of recovery spin to wrap things up. If you have some more time after this workout, add one of these 5 core exercises to the end.

Smooth pedal stroke 

This involves a warm-up of 20 minutes of single-leg and both-leg drills. You should increase your RPM gradually. For example, you produce 90 RPM for two minutes and then increase it to 95 RPM. The goal is to produce 110 RPM at the last stage followed by recovery spins and cooling down. 

Steady-state trainer session

Give maximum effort during the steady-state trainer session.

The first 10 minutes of this workout are spent on building up your strength. The next 20 minutes are spent focusing on high cadence. The main set is broken down into 4 sets (3×2 minutes/2). Focus on giving maximum effort, followed by recovery spins and cooling down. 

Incorporate these quick workouts to become stronger and faster. You’ll also save time by focusing on the workout and the needed effort. Build these rides into your busiest days so you can reserve your non-busy days for workouts that take more time, like brick workouts and longer weekend rides.

Add these 5 Core Exercises to Your Triathlon Training Plan

Triathletes: don’t skip these 5 core exercises

Core exercises are a crucial addition to a triathlete’s training plan. A weak core is detrimental to overall performance. The core represents the muscle groups in the mid-section of your body. These muscles are used to create and transfer force, stabilize the spine, and assist most major movements. The most important advantage of core training is that it doesn’t take much extra time, yet produces substantial results. These 5 core exercises can be done before, during, or after your workout. You could even build them into your rest days. Download the helpful PDF below for a visual reminder of each core exercise. Pro tip: knock them out during your lunch break with these other quick workouts.

Plank and kick

You can plank and kick anywhere!

Planks are good, but adding dynamic movement can strengthen your abdominal muscles. Start in a normal plank on your elbows or hands. Now alternate lifting your legs, 10-15 times each, in the air. Plank exercises help strengthen upper body muscles as well.

Flutter kicks

These are simple core exercises that’ll improve your mid-section and legs. Add these to a circuit workout or before or after your next ride or run. Lie on your back and place your hands behind your head or by your side flat on the ground. Alternate kick your legs slowly, raising them no more than 6 inches off the ground. Keep them straight and don’t let them touch the ground. Do at least 15 for each leg. These will work your leg muscles and abs at the same time.

Side plank rotation

Hold a plank with your elbows in a sideways position, poking out. Bring your right knee to meet your left elbow. Repeat 15 times for each leg/elbow. The side plank rotation is good for increasing strength in your lower back and legs. Add the side plank rotation to these dryland exercises to improve your swim when you can’t get in the water.

Single-leg crunch

These core exercises helps cyclists because it works the lower back, transverse abdomen, and obliques. Lie on a mat face up, extend your left leg out. Bend your right knee, put your right foot flat on the floor, squeeze your belly button toward your spine. Raise your upper back off the mat, lift your left leg, reach your left fingers towards your left toes. Keep your lower back on the mat. Repeat with each side 15 times.

Glute bridge

Strengthening your glutes can reduce the burden on your back and help prevent lower-body injuries. The glute bridge also helps you maintain good cycling and running form. Lie on your back, bend your knees at a 45-degree angle. Place your feet flat on the floor and raise your arms. Press your back to the ground. Contract your glutes and push down with your heels. Now raise your hips to knee height. Repeat 15 times.

A strong core is the best-kept secret for optimal triathlete performance. Core exercises can prevent injury throughout the body and help stabilize your balance. These 5 core exercises don’t take much time, making them easy to add to any triathlon training plan. You could even build them into your workout’s warm-up and cool down.

Triathlon Training After 40: What You Need to Know

Age is just a number; of course you can start triathlon training after 40!

Triathlon involves mastering three sports – swimming, cycling, and running. This makes many people over the age of 40 think that triathlon isn’t for them. But that line of thinking just isn’t true. Triathlon training after 40 is possible and you can do it!

Don’t wait any longer, start your training today with an easy run.

How you train changes as you age. If you’re 40 years or older, then you need to pick a training plan that meets your needs. Focus on strength and endurance training. That’ll give you the foundation you need to get started on your triathlon journey. Many of the world’s top triathletes are over the age of 40. This proves triathlon training after 40 is possible. Below is everything you need to know to jumpstart your training today!

You can complete a triathlon at any time, especially if you start training after 40

The first thing you need to do is to visualize your end result: crossing the finish line. Visualize yourself doing that. This helps remind yourself that you can finish a triathlon. More importantly, it helps you to establish a long-term goal. When you know what you’re long-term goals are, you can set short-term goals that’ll help you get there. Next, choose a particular finish line, like CapTex Triathlon’s downtown Austin one, and register. You have to make the goal a real one. Registering for a triathlon gives you that goal. Now you can incorporate the advice below and begin triathlon training after 40.

  1. Start today

Training is the first step in helping you reach your goals. Instead of using excuses for why you shouldn’t train, find reasons why you should begin. This will help you get the ball rolling and help you follow your plan. When you’re starting out you don’t have to run ten miles the first day.

Wake up earlier and knock your goals out in the morning.

Start small, with a 2-mile run. Tomorrow you can ride your bike for 45 minutes. Next, add in swimming an amount of time that’s comfortable for you. The amounts are up to you, but you have to start. You’ll eventually increase your time and distance. Getting your body used to the training process is a core part of your training, especially if you’re a beginner. Add to your preparation when you know what to expect at your first triathlon.

  1. Follow your training plan

As people age, their muscle mass and bone density become lower than when they were younger. This means that you need to focus on building your strength and endurance if you start triathlon training after 40. Creating and following your training plan helps inform you of what you need to do every day. You’ll gain the motivation you need as well. A triathlon training plan also helps you track your progress. Pro tip: get over your fear of open-water swimming with these 5 tips.

  1. Wake up earlier

Cycling to work is a great workout.

As someone who is training after 40, you may feel as if you don’t have enough time. This isn’t true. There’s plenty of time, you just have to adjust your schedule. For example, wake up one hour earlier for the first few months of training. Now you’ve finished your workout before work. 

Your life is busy with family and friends, work, and hobbies. It’s possible to incorporate training into your everyday life and not sacrifice any of that when you begin training after 40. Cycle to work instead of driving. Knock out your training, increase your bike mileage, and reduce your carbon footprint. Go for runs near your house. Find a swimming pool nearby so you can swim. Finding ways to increase the chance you work out helps you be consistent with your training.

  1. Use the gear you have

When you start training, you may already have the 6 items every beginner triathlete must have. This list includes running shoes, swimming trunks, and a road/mountain bike. Maybe you’ve seen or heard about expensive equipment that can improve your time. You don’t need that in the beginning. Work with what you have so you can begin your triathlon training as soon as possible. As you continue to train, you can slowly upgrade your gear with new equipment.

  1. Join a triathlon group

There are many benefits to joining a triathlon group.

Definitely join a triathlon training group near you. They’ll have veteran triathletes who can offer you great advice like how you can tell if you’re dehydrated. Triathlon training groups also act as a strong motivating force and might have a beginner group you can train with. They also might offer information on training plans, nutrition/hydration advice, and beneficial discounts. Those discounts could help you save money. Most importantly, you’ll be surrounded by like-minded people who can act as a strong motivating force.

Triathlon training after 40 is a rewarding experience. You’ll try something new and improve your health. Who knows, you just might meet your goals this year! Remember, age is just a number. Learn how this Rookie Triathlon Ambassador began training at the young age of 52!

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: 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.