First off...if you are in the Palm Harbor, Clearwater or Tampa area, you are invited to my talk this evening at the Palm Harbor YMCA.
Did you know that the more volume in the stomach, the faster rate of emptying of sport drinks from the stomach to the intestines for absorption? On the flip side, high intense exercise, high calorie/carb drink and stress/anxiety will slow emptying and may increase GI distress. Want to learn more??...come to my talk tonight at the Palm Harbor YMCA at 7pm. Also a Trimarni creation, Hammer freebies, 110% Play harder discounts will be provided! Email me with any questions. (Thanks to the Palm Harbor Tri Warriors Triathlon club for letting me speak tonight!)
It's Spring!! Which means for many, it's the start of Triathlon Season! (1 day before my first Ironman, IMFL in 2006) (morning of my first Ironman! Can you tell I am excited about the Ironman?)
It still feels like yesterday when I was counting down the days, sleeps, hours and minutes until my very first 140.6 mile event. The memories will stay with me forever but luckily, 6 years and 4 Ironman's later, I still get excited to put my training to the test.
But no Ironman for me this year.
However, that same fire for training and competition burns inside of me and with the triathlon season quickly approaching, I decided to step WAY outside my comfort zone..let me repeat...WAY WAY WAY outside my comfort zone and do an Olympic distance triathlon.
My last Olympic distance was in 2008. Excited for this relatively "Short course" triathlon, I am looking forward to setting up a transition area, feeling my heart beat outside my chest, being around athletes of all different fitness levels but with the same finish line to cross and of course, being finished with a triathlon race in less than 2 1/2 hours.
Karel will be racing a crit in downtown Winter Haven on Sat evening at 6:15pm so after I watchin him race, I will head 20 minutes away to Clermont (as Karel and Campy head home) to stay the night and race the Clermont Triathlon on March 25th.
Here are a few to-do's for race week that I feel are very important for athletes, no matter what race you are participating in and the racing distance:
*5-6 days out - review your training schedule and maintain a very good relationship with food and body. It's better to go into a race feeling slightly overtrained than to try to squeeze in 2-3 more hard workouts that may limit your performance on race day. Focus on consistent eating, combining carbohydrates with protein and fat and staying hydrated. Limit simple sugars and focus on recovery nutrition (even if you are tapering all week). Do not try to "drop" pounds on race day. Give your body a big thank you for allowing you to get to race week, feeling confident and strong to put the training to the test. *4 days out - Review past training logs. Have an idea of your paces for your upcoming sport, with an idea of pace, perceived exertion and heart rate and/or power for different distances and intensities. Keep in mind that racing isn't about the fastest person but who slows down the least. Regardless of what you feel you want to do on race day, your race day plan is 100% dependent on your current fitness level, which relfects previous training. *3 days out - go over your packing list. don't wait until the last minute to tune-up your bike and make sure that your race day outfit is washed. Check and re-check everything you need for your race race, today, knowing that in the case of an emergency, you still have 2 more days to get last minute items. Don't let stress wear you down on race week. use today to plan ahead so you can sleep restful and relax on the days leading up to the race. *2 days out - Take the day off from exercise/training and if you need to move, go for a leisurely walk. Do yoga to stretch the body and a light massage (not deep tissue) along with epson salt bath is encouraged. Review all course maps (ex. expo, transition area) as well as the race schedule. Mapquest all directions so you know exactly where you are going and double check any reservations. Write down your schedule/plan so you know exactly what you will be doing, eating and going from the time you leave your house, until the time you cross the finish line. Not a planner? Start now. *1 day out - after a quick warm-up for the race (as early as possible, not sacrificing sleep but not wasting the day away) and a filling breakfast, spend 30 minutes reflecting on the past few weeks and visualize yourself in the race. Keep in mind that races rely on mental and physical strength but in more cases than not, it's your attitude and mentality that will allow you to feel confident no matter what the day brings. Review the weather so you can be prepared for any condition. You can only control the controllables..don't waste your energy on things that are out of your control. *Race day - Have fun, enjoy getting out of your comfort zone and don't be afraid to push your limits. You signed up for the race and you did the training. Don't compare yourself to anyone. This race is all about you! Don't forget to thank the volunteers.