Mountain Swim Series Returns for 2017 Season

The Mountain Swim Series is back!  The Mountain Swim Series is excited to announce that it will be entering into its third year in 2017. Under new ownership, the swim series will be moving forward with three of last year’s events and will be bringing in a new event for 2017. These events, which will be put on by MT Exile Productions LLC, focuses on giving swimmers a fair, competitive and enjoyable experience in some of Colorado’s most popular lakes.

 

The first event of the year, the Boyd Lake Spring Splash, will be held at Boyd Lake near Loveland, Colorado on June 3, 2017 at 7:00 AM. It will feature the 1.2 and 2.4 mile races that have been present in years past and also a 5K race for those wanting to go a little bit further. Participants will also be able to sign up for either the 1.2 mile race AND either the 2.4 mile or 5K. This flexibility is new for 2017. This is one of the first open water swims in the area for the year and is a great lead-in to events like the Boulder Ironman and for people getting back into shape for the summer swimming season. With the option to swim both the 5K and the 1.2 mile swim, it also an excellent event for those looking to train for longer distance swim or make an attempt at getting on the podium twice in one day.

 

The second event of the year, the Solstice Sunset Swim is hosted in conjunction with the City of Longmont’s Kinetics Festival on June 24, 2017. Annually held on the weekend of the summer solstice, the longest day of the year, this swim will usher in summer for 2017. The race will start at 6:00 PM and awards will follow from the festival and beer garden stage. Immediately following, there will be a bonfire on the lake trying to extend the day just one more hour.

 

 

The third event of the year is the Carter Lake Crossing. This three mile swim is in one of Colorado’s most picturesque lakes and will be an early morning point to point swim. It will be held on July 29, 2017 at 7:00 AM. This event has always been the Mountain Swim Series biggest event with approximately 200 people participating last year. It is a great warm-up for longer open water swims later in the year and due to its straight and long course, will allow faster swimmers stuck in the back of the pack the chance to “reel in” their competition.

 

The last and final event, which is new for 2017, is the Chatfield Classic swim, which will be held on August 13. This swim’s granddaddy, which was held in the main reservoir in 2015 was not renewed for 2016 and it is being brought back at the gravel pond. It will feature both a 1 mile sprint and a 2 mile endurance race. Since it is in the gravel pond, those familiar with the pond will know that in the middle of the lake is a sandbar, which offers a chance for some technical shallow water sprinting. The gravel bar also acts as a great landmark for navigation. Many swimmers know of the gravel pond through the Saturday morning workouts that are held there each week.

The Mountain Swim Series is excited to bring these events back for 2017 and is looking forward to bringing in some new opportunities for swimmers. Much of what people enjoyed last year, raffles, cash purses and a great atmosphere will be returning. Also, this year will feature separate awards for both “wetsuit” and “natural” (non-wetsuit) swimming categories.

 

Early registration is now open here.

Weekend Preview: Get Your Ride On

Triathlon Events

Saturday March 25th

 

Team Colorado Weekly Ride, Boulder

 



Cycling Events

Friday March 24th

 

Ski & Fat Bike Festival, Snow Mountain Ranch

GiddyUP! Film Tour, Colorado Springs


Saturday March 25th

 

Ski & Fat Bike Festival, Snow Mountain Ranch

Great Divide Grinder, Monarch Mountain

CSU Cobb Lake Road Race, Ft. Collins

Lennard Zinn:  The Haywire Heart, Wheat Ridge


Sunday March 26th

 

Ski & Fat Bike Festival, Snow Mountain Ranch

CSU Oval Criterium, Ft. Collins

Big Ring Fat Bike Race #3, Alderfer/Three Sisters



 

Vixxen Racing offers ‘Find Your Feisty’ Series

Vixxen Racing is the premier name of Colorado women’s amateur triathlon racing.  They are a community of “elite development” women working together to push limits beyond what is achievable as individuals. They strive to serve as role models in the sport by bringing women together through training, athlete development programs and access to peer-to peer mentoring and support.

The Vixxens aim to create and foster an environment where women are not afraid of competition, but embrace and grow from it.

On Thursday June 22, Vixxen Racing will be offering a beginning OWS clinic.  This clinic is open to any novice or inexperienced open water swimmer.

 

Liz West will lead this clinic that will cover:

  • Approaching your first wave start-where do you seed yourself, setting yourself up for success
  • Equipment-different wetsuits and goggles-pros and cons
  • Beach Starts versus Deep Water Starts
  • Sighting
  • What to do when things don’t go as planned

This clinic will happen in conjunction with the June 22nd Stroke n’ Stride race at the Boulder Reservoir.

Check out all the event details and registration here 

Additional Find Your Feisty series events, look here

Alison Freeman’s bike phsyio testing at CU sports performance center

WHY IS A LAB LACTATE TEST WORTH THE PAIN?

I recently went to the relatively new and categorically state-of-the-art CU Sports Medicine and Performance Center (CUSMPC) for some physiological and metabolic testing. Before the testing, I was taking on a tour of CUSMPC. I had *no idea* that I had access to a world-class sports performance facility practically in my backyard. In addition to physio and metabolic testing for bike and run, CUSMPC houses orthopedic surgeons, physical therapists, an AlterG (anti-gravity!) treadmill, two methodologies for high performance bike fits, running gait analysis, swim stroke analysis and physio testing, and cycling classes (think spin classes but BYO bike). All of which is open to the general public. Who knew? Clearly not me.

But back to the matter at hand …

WHAT IS IT?
The physiological and metabolical performance testing done at CUSMPC measures your heart rate, blood lactate levels, fat and carbohydrate oxidation rates, and VO2 across a spectrum of workloads – either paces on the run, or power outputs on the bike – with the goal of scientifically determining your individualized heart rate, pace, and power based training zones as well as establish ideal racing paces. The tests are conducted by Jared Berg, a certified strength and conditioning specialist as well as a former pro triathlete and current coach, and have been tailored by him to reflect the physiological demand of endurance events.

Even if your eyes glazed over as I described the testing, what should have jumped out was the idea that your ideal racing paces can be scientifically defined based on your physiological and metabolic profile.

WHY SHOULD YOU CARE?
If you’re looking to run and ride recreationally, and participate in triathlons for fun and fitness, then maybe you don’t care about your dialing in your training zones and race paces. But, if you’re starting to get serious about improving your performance, these pieces of data are pretty critical.

Many of us do field tests (such as 20 minute time trials for the bike and 5k time trials for the run) to estimate our lactate threshold heart rate (LTHR), functional threshold power (FTP), and run threshold pace. We then use these results to determine our training zones (more on that here). This is an easily repeatable and cost-effective approach – and a good start.

The results of field tests aren’t going to be as precise as a lab test, but typically – about 80% of the time, according to Jared – are reasonably accurate. What tends to be less accurate / less personalized, are those standard percentages that you use to set your training zones. Just check out how drastically my heart rate zones (left) and power zones (right) changed in the chart below. The blue zones are based on the standard percentages, and the green zones are the personalized zones set by Jared, based on my testing. Training zones are definitely not one-size-fits-all.

HOW DOES IT WORK?
Your time with Jared at CUSMPC will start with a weigh in and caliper test to measure body fat percentage, and some guidance on where you’ll want to be by race day. (Compared to my scale at home, I weighed in a few pounds heavier but my body fat came in a few percentage points lower, so: Win!)

We then set up my tri bike on CUSMPC’s Wahoo Kickr and I warmed up at a super easy effort level for a solid 30 minutes. (You can also use their spin bike with a built-in perfectly calibrated power meter, or you’ll be on a treadmill for the run test.) Once I was sufficiently warmed up, Jared had me don the only moderately annoying mask, necessary to measure oxidation rates. We then kicked in with the test: intervals of either five or ten minutes, at increasing power levels, and ear pricks for blood samples every five minutes. Just ‘cause sweating your ass off while breathing through a mask isn’t quite enough fun for one day. All-in-all, I was on my bike for well over an hour, and given the effort level of the test was totally able to use that as my bike workout for the day.

After the test was over, I cooled down and Jared used that time to run all the numbers. That’s where the real insight comes in. Once you’ve changed out of your sweaty, smelly bike clothes, you’ll sit with Jared in a consult room and review your test results. Jared first takes the time to provide background on things like typical lactate profiles across a range of athletes before diving into your specific results. Then he’ll show you your data through a series of graphs, explaining and interpreting all the details and answering questions as you have them. In addition to providing your lactate threshold heart rate and functional threshold power, Jared will dial in your training zones, suggested race targets for power and/or heart rate, and race-day fueling guidelines tailored for your glycogen stores, race intensity and race distance. He also provides recommendations for your training – how much time to spend training in each zone to achieve your desired race results.

HOW DO YOU GET STARTED?
Signing up for physiological and metabolic testing at CUSMPC is beyond easy. Just go to the CUSMPC website, review the services, pick a time slot, and – viola! – you’re good to go. Wondering whether to do the testing on the bike or the run? Interesting question. I prefer the testing on the bike because the uncomfortable mask doesn’t drive me crazy as much on the bike as when I’m literally gasping for air on the run. Also, if you bike with power then you will definitely want to test on the bike so you can get your FTP checked as well as your LTHR. If you still can’t decide, I’d go with the discipline in which you’d most like to improve.

Final tip: I highly recommend adding a sweat test onto your physio and metabolic testing. The sweat test will reveal your sweat rate and concentration, which then determines your fluid and sodium requirements during training and racing. That’s the kind of information that can save your race – it’s a no brainer add-on.

Tri Coach Tuesday: Motivation Tips that Work

From USA Triathlon  By Mental Specialist Coach Will Murray

 


Are you sure you’re getting the full benefit from your training sessions? With a training plan aimed at a particular race or set of races, you likely have a number of workouts of different kinds and different durations carefully ordered over the months to get you in peak condition for your top races.

Completing this sequence of training sessions — as prescribed and in order — is key to arriving at your most important races in optimum form: fit, healthy and rested. Fit, meaning in top physical condition for the type of race, whether sprint distance triathlon or ultramarathon; healthy, meaning freedom from injury or illness; and rested meaning fresh and ready to go. Achieving this three-way goal to let you race to your potential is not always easy to do.

Having a good annual training plan is vitally important. Just as important is executing that plan by completing the workouts — as prescribed and in the right sequence. Some athletes succumb to the temptation of taking an easy run when they are supposed to be doing 600-meter hard intervals at the track or chasing a fast pack of cyclists when they are scheduled for an easy recovery ride. Some athletes skip the workout altogether, because they “just aren’t feeling it.”

An athlete who too often replaces a recovery swim with a hard masters set is possibly digging a hole toward overtraining. An athlete who skips the high-intensity bike sessions is raffling off key fitness. And one who skips workouts altogether too frequently is not only giving away fitness but also generating unhelpful emotions that undermine the training and also come back to haunt on race day — if the start line appears at all.

Fortunately, there are easy, quick and effective techniques to help athletes do their scheduled workouts. Here are two that athletes find useful…

Read the full USA Triathlon article here

7 Reasons Cycling is better than Running

From Cycling Magazine

Not to dis our sister sport, but let’s face it, cycling rules. We can prove it.
By selene yeager

There’s a lot to love about running. It’s cheap to get started, great for torching calories, and works well with nearly any cross-training regimen you may have. But in the ongoing bar bet of which sport is best, we believe cycling is still the overall winner. (And, we think we can prove it.) Here’s why.

 

Get Fit & Build Endurance

True running burns more calories per mile, but most people can’t run as many miles as they can ride, especially if you’re a little out of shape or have some weight to lose. Blame gravity. When you run you need to lift your body weight up off the earth to propel yourself forward. Then you have to come back down, striking the ground and absorbing those impact forces. Both of those things make it considerably harder to run five miles than to ride twice or even three or four times as long. Running is also less forgiving of extra pounds with every excess pound slowing you down. Excess weight makes hills harder on a bike, but on the flats? Because gravity isn’t really a factor, you can motor along with the skinniest of ‘em.

 

Pain Points

Running beats you up more than cycling, even if you’re hammering super hard. One study that compared trained, competitive cyclists and runners exercising 2 ½ hours a day for three days found that the long distance runners had substantially more muscle damage (between 133% and 404% more), inflammation levels (up to 256% higher) and muscle soreness (87% more) in the following 38 hour recovery period than the cyclists. “We knew running places more stress on the body, but how much more damage and inflammation there was was surprising and greater than anticipated,” says study author David Nieman, MPH, professor of public health at Appalachian State University. “There’s just a lot more muscle trauma involved with running. It’s harder for the immune system to handle the damage.”

Go Places!

The ability to ride for multiple hours means you can cover a lot of ground and see some amazing sites in a relatively short period of time. You don’t see many running tours of California wine country or through the Italian Dolomites. But there are literally hundreds of amazing bike tours you can take all over the world. You also can carry far more things far more easily on a bike than you can on foot. You not only can stuff your jersey pockets to the gills, but also wear a messenger bag or backpack and even add carrying capacity to your bike. That frees you to use your bike for commuting, day tripping, bikepacking and as everyday Earth-friendly transportation.

 

Read the full, original article here

 

37 Reasons Running Is SO Much Better Than Bicycling on 303cycling here

Feedback Sports App for Bike Maintenance

Inspiration for new products/services can often come from frustration. How many of us have sticky notes and random receipts stuffed in drawers to help us keep track of when we last did what to which bike? It was exactly this sort of thing that prompted Feedback Sports to develop their bicycle maintenance app. #nomorestickynotes #yourbikedeservesbetter #releaseyourinnergeek 

By John Marsh, Editor & Publisher, RoadBikeRider

A couple of weeks ago, I bought a new work stand from Feedback Sports. While I was looking around the site, I noticed that Feedback offers a free maintenance tracking app.

Upon a closer look at the app, I quickly realized it is exactly what I’ve been looking for to keep track of my bike’s components and maintenance schedule. (In fact, I wrote a sticky note to myself about two years ago with an idea for this very same app. I’m glad they read my mind and built it!)

It comes in both iOS (Apple) and Android versions. You can find them on the App Store and at Google Play. Here are links for info:

iOS

Android

Here’s How the App Works

For each of your bikes (you can also take a photo of each bike for reference), you can easily input all of your various components (and fit specs like saddle height and reach) across categories including:

- Frame, Fork, Headset
- Handlebar, Saddle, Seatpost
- Accessories (computers and such)
- Drivetrain
- Brakes
- Wheels, Tires

For the components, you can add detail including the date added to your bike, the weight, cost, description, etc. What you’re left with is a front-to-back, top-to-bottom snapshot of every single jot and tittle about your bike, including the serial number, which could come in handy in case of theft, for warranty purposes, etc.

Then you can set a maintenance schedule and keep records of your maintenance using the app.

Zen-Like Experience Recording It All

I sat down in front of a fire on a recent weekend day when it was too nasty out to ride and worked through the details, hunting down any stray receipts I had, jogging my memory of when I put on those shifters, when I rebuilt my custom wheels, and so on.

I found it a very pleasant way to spend a couple of hours. And while I know I was likely not exact in the dates for everything, I now have a consolidated, easily referenced and pretty accurate record of every single aspect of my main bike. (One bike at a time!)

So now I can quickly see exactly when I installed my last chain, rings, cassette, tires, shift and brake cables, etc. (You can even catalog your tubes, but I drew the line there). And I can set up a maintenance schedule for any component. For instance, I’ve set up a reminder to check my chain near a date at which I think it might be worn enough to change.

I suspect I’ll be checking on various components more by feel than by set reminders, but the main thing is that I’ll be able to know exactly when they were installed. To me, that’s half the battle and will totally remove any future guesswork.

I’m glad I stumbled upon this app. I know it’s going to be super-useful over time.

Conclusion: 
Annnnnnd it’s free. Has anyone mentioned this? Get your bikes dialed. Your bike shop will thank you when you actually have an answer for “When was the last time you____?” instead of standing there, mouth agape with a blank look on your face. 

Join IRONMAN’s Team Colorado

 

 

IRONMAN has announced a Team Colorado program for IRONMAN Boulder this year.  If you are already registered for the June race this year or you and a friend are still trying to decide, check out what this program can offer.

 

Join Team Colorado—an exclusive program for athletes who live in the state of Colorado and are registered for IRONMAN Boulder 2017. Athletes who live and train in Colorado know that it’s an endurance sports mecca filled with amenities that go hand-in-hand with training and reaching your endurance goals. From farm-to-table dining, to the challenging altitude conditions, and the friendly people in each community, triathlon training in Colorado is truly a treat. Team Colorado is intended to a build community among triathletes in the state and brings all the best aspects of training in the Centennial state together in one easy place. Plus, the program offers several added benefits specific to your IRONMAN Boulder preparation.

 

Benefits:

  • Local meet-ups with pros to train  (schedule coming soon)
  • Swag bag of Team Colorado training gear (available for pick-up at training events)
  • Strava group to track training progress
  • Featured shout out in Athlete Guide
  • Team Colorado discounts with IRONMANStore.com
  • Exclusive Team Colorado emails with meet-up and additional benefits information
  • Joining the Team Colorado Strava Group

 

Check out these great video clips from the 2016 race!

 

Race Registration here

 

Stay tuned, 303Triathlon will keep you up to date on all you need to know with the IRONMAN Boulder Resource page

 

Women’s Wednesday: From the Couch to Dash n Dine

From the Boulder Dash n Dine Series

By Cheri Felix

Like many great things in my life, it was a friend who introduced me to The Dash & Dine Run Series. We went on the final night of the series in 2015. It was darkish outside and rainy and cold and it seemed that only the “serious” people were out that night. I mean really, if you had to choose between your couch on a night like that and running a 5k in the rain with a bunch of strangers, wouldn’t you choose the couch? I’ll cut to the chase. It was so much fun and it was so gratifying that I waited all the next year for the series to start again. I wasn’t going to miss out.

A 5k. It’s a nice low number and if you convert it to miles, it’s even lower; 3.1 miles. It can be a tougher distance for long distance runners but for the REST of us, it’s completely manageable. Like, even if you walk/run or run/walk or mostly walk with a side of running, it’s manageable. And when you’re done, there’s food waiting for you. And there’s the lovely feeling you get when you realize you could’ve stayed home to watch Netflix or make dinner or clean our your kid’s lunchbox but you chose to go for a group run instead. It’s like the best feeling. Way better than the one you get from cleaning out the lunchbox.

Is it a race? For some. Is it timed? Yes. Do you have to race? No. Here’s how you do it; you show up, you run and at the end of the race, you’ll know how long it took you. What you do with that information is up to you. Me? I try to get a little faster. I compete with myself. No matter how long it takes me, I feel proud of myself. At the end of the day, I pushed myself for a small window of time mostly with strangers mixed with a few friends. And someone fed me. It really is awesome. Come on out this year. Don’t be like me. Don’t wait until the last night in the series. And it is fun. It’s not serious. It’s only running. It’s just you, your feet and your (elevated) heart rate having a little Tuesday night date night.

Plan Now
Tuesday nights at the Boulder Reservoir. Series begins April 11th. Don’t wait to see if it fits in your life. Sign up and tell your favorite (or least favorite) friends.

Next time we’ll talk about what to wear (whatever you want) and what you can expect. We’ll also be talking about the 5k distance and I’ll give you some completely novice tips. It will be like a Food Network or HGTV show except no one will cry and you don’t have to make big decisions.

See additional series details and sign up here.

Bosley, clubs, pass along Bolder Boulder training tips

Cliff Bosley, 13, center, sprints to the finish on the Boulder High School football field during the 1980 Bolder Boulder 10K. Today, Bosley is the Bolder Boulder race director.

From the Daily Camera

When Cliff Bosley was a kid growing up in Boulder, he learned how to train from a master, Olympic marathon champ Frank Shorter.

A couple of times a month as a sixth, seventh and eighth grader, Bosley’s father, Steve, would drop Cliff off at the Chautauqua- area home of Shorter, named by Track & Field News at the time as the “Marathoner of the Decade.”

Cliff Bosley would run 5 or 6 miles of Shorter’s longer run, keeping up for as long as he could. Call it Training 101, as Bosley was absorbing training lessons from a U.S. track record holder as well as one of the top road racers in the world.

“That is where I was first introduced to the concept of hard and easy days, interval training, hill training,” Bosley, 50, said in a phone interview last week. “Those runs were hard for me and easy for Frank. He was teaching me how to listen to the cues in my own running, relating to how hard to push, when to rest, when do easy runs, when to do hard runs, those kinds of things.”

With all that knowledge, Bosley said, half jokingly, “I should have been way better.”

Bosley trained well enough to run sub-40 minutes at altitude, with a Bolder Boulder best of42:27. As a 12-year old in the first Bolder Boulder, he clocked 47:02, good enough for 10th in his age group.

Read the full story here