After months of remodeling, we’re looking forward to our updated space and a weekend long celebration. Please plan to join us! We’ll be riding, testing out e-bikes, selecting an official Big Ring Cycles Cocktail and more! Check out the great events all weekend!
This is a 75 mile gravel race held in Scotts Bluff County, Nebraska, and is run through the heart of the Wildcat Hills. You can race it and gather a cash prize, or you can take your time and make it an adventure ride.
Back in 2014 I engaged Sara Taylor (Currently the City’s Recreation Program Supervisor, but who was also race director at the time), about Boulder Salt partnering/sponsorship in some way with the Longmont Tri. I knew that I wanted it to be in a unique way, rather than the typical age group awards. Sara was very open to suggestions. When it came down to it, I wanted to be a part of an award that didn’t revolve around how fast a person is. I knew from experience that everyone out there has their own story behind getting into triathlon and some people are fighting a fight that you couldn’t imagine. They might be coming in 83rd in their division or even the last to cross the finish line, but there’s something remarkable about their spirit, inspiration, or journey that most people will never know.
So to take the thinking back a few years: before I ever did my first triathlon (which happened to be at the Longmont Tri), I would sign up to volunteer along with other members of Blue Sky Velo, a cycling and tri club I am a member of. I would get to talking to the athletes and was blown away by the stories I heard about what brought them to the event in the first place or why they kept coming back (it’s the longest running tri in Colorado, and maybe even the 48 contiguous states). Read Save the Longmont Triathlon Here
I would get into conversations with other people, including event staff, and tell them the stories. I realized pretty quickly that what I was doing, by reaching out and asking/sharing stories was somewhat unusual and gave people a very different insight into the athletes on course. As I thought about the award and wanting it to be unique, I came up with the idea to ask people to write down their stories, and then choose a few to recognize during the awards ceremony. With Sara’s help I contacted other sponsors, which tended to be independent, local business, told them of the idea and invited them to join me. Two other (long time) Longmont Tri sponsors (*Bob Cranny/Altitude Physical Therapy and Dr. Donna Mitchell/BodyPoint Medicine) were very enthusiastic about this type of award and we joined together to give three participants a very nice prize package based on their “story”.
The stories were broken into 3 categories: My first Longmont Tri, My most unique/funny Longmont Tri experience and My most memorable/inspiring Longmont Triathlon experience. Traditionally I talk to athletes during packet pick up and on race morning and invite them to write down their stories. The other sponsors and myself read the stories and select three (not necessarily one from each category, but we do try for a mixture when possible). Then those stories are read by the announcer immediately preceding the age group awards. Those athletes are awarded their prize package and get their pictures taken. It’s becoming a favorite 5-10 minute time period at the triathlon and a very nice way to honor the community of athletes that are drawn to this long-running hometown event – now in it’s 38th year!
*I would also like to point out the Bob and Donna, in addition to being longtime sponsors, both have a pretty long history of competing in the Longmont Tri! I have participated 2 or 3 times.
Missy C., Triathlon Veteran, Most Memorable Longmont Triathlon
I am currently a veteran of over 25 triathlons and Longmont is one of my favorites. It’s well organized, has great volunteers and always great post race food and other goodies. Most importantly though, I love the atmosphere: low-key, welcoming all abilities and especially encouraging first-timers. My all-time favorite triathlon memory was a few years ago here. . . a female participant was sitting by her bike after the swim leisurely enjoying a piece of chocolate cake! She said she had earned it, and obviously had no desire to rush through the experience. Triathlons do not have to be just a competition or a race. The journey to get there is the real reward, as much as the event itself.
Kirk D., Most Unique Longmont Tirathlon
In 2009, my wife convinced me to do the Longmont Tri with her. I only did it to support her and thught it would only be a 1-time thing. In 2010, I did my first Half Ironman!
Since 2009, I’ve done the Longmont Tri all but one year, Have done dozens of Sprints & Olympics and 3 Halfiron distance races.
You may or may not have given much thought to hydration and fueling (also known as water and food) during your training up to now. That’s ok! For short-course racing – sprint and Olympic-distance triathlons – faking it often can work just fine in training. That being said, there’s nothing wrong with having a little knowledge to fuel your fueling (hahaha) and on race day the knowledge will really come in handy.
You’ve got lots of options when it comes to hydration and fueling:
Water. Duh. That’s hydration.
Gels, blocks, chews, and waffles. Things like Gu Energy Gels, Gu Chomps, Clif Shot Energy Gels, Clif Shot Bloks, Honey Stinger Energy Chews, Honey Stinger Waffles, and Gatorade Energy Chews are very popular fueling sources for triathletes. They are all easily digestible sources of quick fuel for your muscles – and are really tasty to boot! No one option is better than the other, it’s really just a matter of personal preference. So grab a smorgasbord of types and flavors and see what you like.
Real food. Yup, you can also just use actual food as fuel, but it requires a little more research on your part. You’re looking for food that’s easily transportable, has lots of sugar – but very little fat or protein. Believe it or not, baby food “squeezers” are a popular choice which fits that bill. Personally, I like my frosting packets and gummy bears – I mean, Energy Gels and Shot Bloks – so I just stick with those.
Electrolytes. Also knows as: sodium. Yes, you do need to think about this as well, particularly on hot days and longer workouts. Sodium is not typically found in gels, blocks, etc and is often in low supply in real food, so you’ll want to supplement with something like BASE Salt, Boulder Salt, SaltStick, Enduralytes, or Nuun.
Sports drinks. All this sounding really complicated? Here’s some good news: you can get hydration, fueling, and electrolytes all in a single bottle of your sports drink of choice. There are lots of choices out there: Gatorade and Gatorade Endurance, Infinit Speed, Heed, Skratch, CarboPro, and Tailwind, to name a few. So, just as with the gels, blocks, chews, and waffles, grab a few sample-size options and see what you like.
Here are some rules of thumb to help you understand when to pay attention to hydration and fueling, and when you can really just fake it:
Before your workout, it’s helpful to have some food (fuel). If you train immediately after you wake up, a gel packet or something along those lines will help get you out the door. If you train later in the day, your normal meals should do just fine. Keep in mind that some foods will sit heavier in your stomach, particularly for running, so maybe don’t have a giant burrito and then knock out a tough run. I’d wait at least an hour after a meal to train, and two to three hours is even better.
For workouts under 60 minutes, you’re fine with just some water (in other words: faking it).
For workouts 60 minutes or longer, you’ll want to get your fuel and hydration going (food and water). You want to aim for one standard bike water bottle (20-24 oz) per hour for hydration. If your fueling source is liquid, that counts as your hydration too. Bonus! If you are going with gel, blocks, or a food-based fuel source, shoot for 250-300 calories per hour on the bike (especially if you are running after!) and up to 200 calories per hour on the run. In terms of electrolytes (sodium), individual needs vary widely, from 300-400mg per hour to upwards of 1500mg per hour; for short-course racing, default somewhere in the 300-600mg per hour range and/or whatever is in your sports drink.
On the bike, you can bring a bottle or two depending on how many bottle cages you have on your bike frame. I recommend a bottle of water and a bottle of sports drink if you have two cages. If you don’t have a cage on your bike, go get one now. You really, really need to be able to carry at least a water bottle while you ride.
As for bringing along gels, waffles, real food, and/or salt supplements, you can plan to stow them in your bike jersey or tri top pockets (yup, that’s what they’re there for) or you can rig your bike with a “bento box” – a little storage compartment that you strap to the top of your frame, right behind the bars – and stow all your fueling in there.
On the run, it’s simplest to just use what they have at the aid stations – water and Gatorade, typically. If you’ve gotten in the correct amount of water, fueling, and electrolytes on the bike then you don’t need to worry to much about quantities for a 5k run. If you do want to bring some water along, perhaps on a really hot day, then I recommend a handheld water bottle. It doesn’t matter if the bottle is small, because you can refill it at the aid stations, and as a bonus most handheld bottles have small zippered pockets where you can store gels or other fueling.
SOME FINAL NOTES
Be sure to practice your fueling and hydration plan during training! That way you know whether it’s easy or hard to suck down a gel while cycling, if you are able to reach that second water bottle, and if you’re still thirsty after drinking 20 ounces of water in 30 minutes or if you finish your ride and your sports drink bottle is still half full.
Try out different things in training, find a system that works, and then race like you train. Because, above all: nothing new on race day!
I recently traveled to California to participate in the iconic Wildflower Experience , a race that’s been on my bucket list for nearly my entire triathlon career. My weekend did not disappoint! The gorgeous venue, challenging course, and full weekend of being off the grid with thousands of compatriots were exactly what I’d been imagining. If you’re looking for a race venue that does *not* involve the Boulder Rez, I highly recommend making the trip to Wildflower. Here’s why:
1. The History
2018 marked the 35th running of the Wildflower triathlon (what’s Wildflower?). If that doesn’t make it a race rich with history, then I don’t know what does. Surely there’s a reason for the longevity of this race – don’t you want to find out what it is?
2. The Unique Environment
This is not the standard race where everyone shows up for packet pickup, returns for the race, and then departs soon after crossing the finish line. The venue is 35 miles from the nearest town – and nearest hotel – so you’re showing up on Thursday, eating, sleeping, hanging out, racing, maybe racing again, and celebrating through Sunday afternoon, all at the race venue … and all with your race weekend posse plus thousands of others doing the same. It truly is the Wildflower Experience, not just a triathlon.
3. The Brutal Bike and Run Courses
I realize that doesn’t sound like a selling point at first blush. But if you hold the opinion that too many people are looking for easy races so they can PR, and that too many race directors are taking the challenge out of their courses to enable those PRs, you will LOVE the Wildflower course. It has more elevation on both the bike and the run than any other course that I know of in North America, including three rated climbs on the bike and one on the run. Even the pros are known to power hike the big climb on the run course!
4. Local Race Vibe; National Brand Numbers
The local race vibe brings a more laid back attitude and a wider range of athletes than you might see at a nationally-branded race. But with registration numbers in the thousands, you’re not going to get lonely out there on the run course. And numbers like that also mean great vendors at the Expo and a stocked merch tent, two of my favorite things (cuz, just like snacks after 10pm, Expo and merch tent money don’t count).
5. There’s Something For Everyone … And I Mean, EVERYONE
With four triathlons over two days, two trail running races, SUP races and rentals, it’s easy to pull together a wide-ranging group for a girls’ weekend / guys’ weekend / family race-cation. Even if your friends or family don’t want to break a sweat, there are bands playing all day at the Expo, where they can also do some wine tasting and get a massage. And for those with a real specialty-focus to their sport, there was even a well attended but very under-the-radar running of the Beer Mile this year. Oh, wait, and did I mention the 80s dance party? I mean, who isn’t going to want to come with you next year?
6. The Logistics Are NOT As Overwhelming As You Think
Getting yourself, your gear, and your bike to a race can often be headache enough, so it’s understandable that adding food, water, and shelter to that list might feel like a deal-breaker. But, really, it’s not as bad as it sounds. Your guide to How to Wildflower spells out all the details, and rumor has it that local bike transport extraordinaire ProBike Express will be serving Wildflower once again in 2019. With PBE transporting your bike, your gear, and your tent, the rest is a piece of cake. Or at least a nice s’more.
In just 50 minutes you’ll learn techniques for specific skills:
++Get Your Mind Right—planning for a great swim
++Breathe easy—key insights from physiology for comfort in the water
++The Warm up—how to have a great start and finish
++Wee (and not so wee) Besties—what is in that water anyway, and how to regard the marine life
++Feet and Elbows—overcoming getting touched by other swimmers
Don’t just endure the swim—learn to love it.
Presenter Will Murray is our Team’s mental skills coach, a USA Triathlon certified coach, and co-author of The Four Pillars of Triathlon: Vital Mental Skills for Endurance Athletes.
The Longmont Triathlon is the longest running triathlon in the State of Colorado. Now in it’s 38th year!
No event can ever be successful with out a full compliment of volunteers. Race Director Sara Taylor is looking for folks to help make this great weekend a huge success. Read on to see how you can help by volunteering for this great event.
Recreation and Golf services is planning for the 38th Longmont Triathlon Weekend on June 2nd and June 3rd. We need volunteers to keep the athletes safe and motivated on the course. This is a wonderful opportunity for families, students, athletic teams, churches, and business organizations to give back to the community, team build, and gather volunteer hours. Youth 16 and under must be accompanied by an adult.
Please consider joining us to cheer, direct participants, hand-out water, or help with registration and/or hospitality. We need help on Saturday, June 2nd from 7am to 11am and on Sunday, June 3rd from approximately 6:15am to 11am. If you can help, please email Sara Taylor (email@example.com) with your job preference, day/days you can help and your contact information. You are welcome to volunteer for one day or both!
Thank you in advance for your time and energy. This event wouldn’t be the same without smiling faces and encouraging cheers.
Gain some inspiration from these great stories shared by first time participants over the past several years. Watch for more of these fun and inspiring Story Bowl Stories over the next several weeks.
Longmont Tri Participant, Greg Thompson, First Timer Athlete
2006. My daughter was 9 and I was 38. She was on a synchronized swim team and I was swimming a handful of times per month, but had not ridden a bike in over a decade and was slow jogging only 2 miles, when I saw the advertisement for kid and adult tri. I asked my daughter, quite out-of-the-blue, if she would do the kid event and I would do the adult tri. She rapidly replied ‘yes’. Suddenly I was in shock and it was only 5 weeks away! I felt like dying as I gasped for air across the finish line that first time, This was the start of a terrific journey and 6 years later, I competed in my first iron distance tri in North Carolina and was 2nd in my age group. Now after two knee surgeries, I’m back for my 9th Longmont Tri.
Longmont Tri Participant, Kevin Pallaoro, First Timer Athlete
About 8 month ago, I took my 3 yr old daughter to her first swim lesson and she asked why I couldn’t teach her to swim. My response sparked something in me. The reality is that I didn’t know how to swim. Three days later I signed up for masters swim and started my journey towards my first tri.
I chose Longmont since it was a pool swim and my wife works for the city I a very excited for my first ever tri and a new found love for swimming.
In my hometown, every Fourth of July begins with a one-mile race on the streets of Flagstaff, Arizona. It’s set up like the Fifth Avenue Mile or the Carlsbad 5000—waves of competitors, grouped by age and gender, compete against each other.
If I enter the Downtown Mile, I can choose the category in which I want to compete. Being “an old,” I can opt for the masters wave or if I’m feeling ambitious, I can go for the open division and risk being whooped by a pack of teenagers. Typically I opt to skip it altogether and volunteer instead.
However, if I decide to compete in the open category, place 10th, but run a faster time than the winner of the masters division, I don’t earn the first-place masters award—it was a different race, with different competitors, which created different racing strategies and dynamics. It was an entirely different competition—one in which I chose not to participate. I go home empty-handed.
Seems fair, doesn’t it?
In the aftermath of the 2018 Boston Marathon—a year in which the treacherous weather conditions played heavily into the racing tactics of top female athletes—three women in the open category and two masters athletes ended up in the final results with faster finishing times than women who received the prize money. The faster women were ineligible for the awards because they didn’t qualify to compete with the elite women’s-only field of 46 athletes, which started at 9:32 a.m. in Hopkinton, Massachusetts. Instead, these women began at 10 a.m. in the next wave of 7,500 mixed-gender competitors.
What happened next included predictable outrage and backlash. Just as predictably, much of the controversy was unwarranted and based on misinformation. Some news outlets framed it as an issue of gender inequity. Others didn’t fully understand the rules involved.
The next Team Colorado event/ride will be May 20th at Tom Watson park.
This is a special event as we pay tribute to a well known, and well loved Colorado triathlete, Joe Vrablik who recently passed away. He was coached by D3 and good friends with Michael Stone, owner of Colorado Multisport. Both organizations will be present at this meeting and would like to share a few moments and stories with you at the ride briefing. Joe had just qualified for Kona through the legacy program. His story is well documented and subject of a couple of IRONMAN special videos. Tim Brosious, race director of IRONMAN Boulder will be on hand as well. This is what Team Colorado is really all about, the community and supporting each other, please come join this last meet up before IRONMAN Boulder.
We will ride, and D3 will have coaches on hand to help us break into groups and try to sort of ride together and finish about the same time so we can enjoy a picnic/tailgate. We are working food details and park accommodations so stay tuned–it very well could be a byoe–bring your own everything- but we shall see.
Afterwards will be a great time to chat with coaches and get some last minute training ideas if you are doing IMB and to ask Tim about anything to do with the race and meet your “neighbors” and people sharing the course with you!
Arrive at 8, briefing at 8:15, wheels down at 8:30
Return approx 12:30 with routes following the IM Boulder course with at least one loop, possibly two or a modified second loop. Depending on the group and how we split up we will accommodate all levels.
Check out this video if you want to learn more about Joe