My Stupid Reasons for Skipping Swimming

It’s no secret that swimming is not my forté. I grew up on a lake, and I rather enjoy open water swimming (swimming pools, not so much), I’m just slow. I’ve taken lessons and have made progress, especially at efficiency, but slow I remain. It seems that, like a lot of old runners, I have very little flexibility in my ankles so kicking doesn’t add to my propulsion. Need to fix that.

So, not too surprisingly, sometimes its a little hard for me to get out and swim. Today was a particularly bad day; I just didn’t to it. So I decided I would write down every reason I have used to not swim, so I can come back to this list and shame myself into getting that swim in. Continue reading

Tips for Ironman 70.3

Lindsay Ercole, fellow member of the St Louis Triathlon Club, completed her first half Iron distance at Ironman 70.3 New Orleans in April 2013. As a newly minted “AluminumMan“, she took the time a few hours after finishing the race to pass on her thoughts to other rookies at that distance, while they were still fresh in her mind. Thanks for sharing these, Lindsay, and congratulations!

  1. Practice biking long hours in aero with a head wind. We had a strong one today and it took all by surprise. Also, you get sore in different places when in aero with that kind of wind.
  2. Reapply chamois butter after your swim. ‘Nuff said.
  3. Bring a variety of nutrition. What you like in training might turn your stomach on race day.
  4. Extra body glide up by your neck with wetsuit. What worked for me for the Olympic wore off and I am now rocking an awesome wetsuit hicky.
  5. On the run, dump the ice in your Tri kit. Your core temp will thank you. Also, the flat coke does work wonders.
  6. Find a mantra, some of these courses (i.e. NOLA) were desolate at times. It started to feel lonely, so hence the need for mantra.
  7. Double swim cap saved me today for our 64 degree swim.
  8. Pack a change of dry clothes for post-race so you can change and enjoy the environment at the finish without walking around in cold wet clothes.
  9. Bring TP. We did as a precaution, and I’m glad. It was all gone by early morning in all the stalls.
  10. Practice transitions! I wasted almost 30 minutes in transition today. So, speed is key. 🙂

I Know What “5150” Means!

I have seen the “Olympic”, “Standard”, or “International” distance sometimes referred to as the “5150”, yet I had never been able to figure out why, or whether the references were with respect to a different race.

Then I started playing geek games with my calculator:

1500 m swim + 40 km bike + 10 km run = 51.50 km

With a factor of 100 between friends, that becomes “5150”.

World Triathlon Corp’s 5150 Triathlon Series site does list the distances at the bottom of each page, but doesn’t add it up for you. For everyone else like me who hadn’t found that, or didn’t do the math, here you go.

There’s no crawling in triathlon!

Triathlon has it’s rules, just like any sport. In the US, any race will be using the USA Triathlon Rulebook, or a modification of those rules. And most of them are pretty well understood. No drafting in the cycling leg, but you can draft when you swim. No personal music devices at any times. Wear your helmet whenever on a bike or be disqualified. Don’t do drugs. And so forth.

But here’s one that was a bit of a surprise. Continue reading