Holiday Gift Guide: Run with Stryd

by Rich Soares

 

I love running. When I’m finished with a run, I have that sense of accomplishment and satiation that comes from endorphins coursing through my brain. For all the satisfaction that comes with the run itself – I’m a data guy. A workout without data, metrics, charts and graphs is like witnessing a beautiful sunset on your dream vacation and not having the picture to show your relatives. For all the data that you can use to analyze and improve your running, I’ve learned in the past two weeks that there is nothing more powerful (all pun intended) than Stryd power. Here’s why.

For many runners, data comes from what is native to your GPS watch in terms of pace, distance, heart rate, grade and elevation. I’ve been intrigued with running with power and using that data in my training since running power meters first hit the market. Running with a power meter promised to have many of the same advantages as a cycling power meter. By knowing your run power, you could know your actual work and output during training. If you know your actual rate of work in training, it follows that you would know definitively what performance you can expect to perform on race day – exceed that work rate, and you risk of unraveling in a muscle-quivering mess walking from aid station to aid station.

Intrigued to put running with a power meter to the test, I recently had a chance to talk to coach Jim Vance, who literally wrote the book Run with Power. Jim advocated Stryd as the product leader in the space, so I was eager to get my hands on a Stryd foot pod and try it for myself. While it has no direct bearing on product performance, the out-of-the-box experience is an important first impression and speaks volumes about how much Stryd has thought about the user. Simplification is paramount. Stryd gets a high rating right from the start. The first thing I experienced when I flipped back the cardboard lid of the package was a simple black on white card with 3 steps comprised of 9 words of instruction.

 

Following the instructions to “get started here”, I opened my browser and navigated to stryd.com/get-started. The Set Up Stryd process is straight-forward and tech sexy. The wireless charging unit is sleek and has the look and feel of quality. The registration and profile setup are easy they warrant no further description and the integration to your other fitness applications is idiot proof. I had my Stryd configured to receive data from my Garmin and send data to TrainingPeaks as fast as I could read the text on the page. Installing the Stryd app on my iPhone was equally easy and the foot pod seamlessly interfaces with the phone app. One of my favorite features on the phone app is being able to check the battery charge level of the Stryd foot pod to monitor the progress to a full charge – another tech sexy point!

The Run with Stryd process is where you first start to interface Stryd with your GPS or other watch; in my case a Garmin 735XT. Stryd’s website is very intuitive and the instructions are simple. Select the type of watch you are pairing the Stryd with and then follow Stryd’s instructions. If you follow the instructions literally, you should have no problem completing the device connection and collecting data. Deviate at all from the instructions and you will potentially find yourself lost on in your watch’s menu. My advice, trust the Stryd instructions and not your belief in your confidence in tech adoption.

Stryd is compatible with Garmin, Suunto, Polar, iOS, Android, or you can use the Stryd by itself. In the case of Garmin, I downloaded the Stryd Power activity app and then installed it in the Garmin Express application from my laptop. On my watch, I set up a running activity screen with a single field for “power”. Once the setup was completed, I started a run activity and the power foot pod connected within 20 seconds. During my first run with Stryd I frequently checked my watch to take note of the power numbers in various terrain (uphill, flats and downhill), and was pleased to see the reading adjust instantly to the changes. Hit an uphill section and the number reading would instantly increase. Adjusting my pace on a constant grade, and again the display would immediately change in response. By contrast, pace and heart rate would like considerably behind the Stryd’s response time.
At the end of my run, I completed the activity, launched the app and with a single thumb press synced my power to Stryd, Garmin and TrainingPeaks. From the Stryd app, I could immediately see a summary of my power data from the run on my phone. Eager to see my complete power data analysis I turned to the last of the three easy “get started” steps – Learn From Stryd.

Navigating to Power Center on the Stryd website where you can begin to analyze your data. Again, first impressions are important and the Analyze view of Power Center presents a dashboard view with a summary of the workout including power, form power and cadence. I used the radio buttons to toggle between elapsed and moving data to filter out stop light stops. This is great if you capture elapsed time on your GPS and still want the option to just see moving time data.

It’s not been more than a week and I’ve collected Stryd data for six runs in that time. That has enabled me to explore some of the other features of Power Center, including the comparison feature to evaluate two workouts side by side and compare differences. Analysis is only the beginning of the features in Power Center. I wanted to begin exploring other features in the application, including Improve, Compete and Settings.

Settings is where I first completed my profile and data sync preferences. This is also where I would establish my power zones. Stryd provides 4 methods in the application for establishing your power zones. For this review, I chose the 5K estimation method. During this past week, I performed the Jim Vance 20-minute rFTPw test and ironically came up with similar FTP numbers using the 5K estimation method. I’ll likely experiment with the other methods, including the 3-9 test, which involves a 3-minute all out, followed by a short recovery, and then a 9-minute hard effort. With FTP known, I was able to establish my power training zones and experiment with training within specific power zone ranges.

The Improve screen of Power Center is designed to provide individual insights about your power data and running performance. The Runner Profile presents your relative strengths and weaknesses with respect to metabolic fitness, muscle power, and muscle endurance. The Training Optimizer suggests workouts that will help you focus areas where you have the most potential and areas for improvement. Having facts and data helps me be accountable to today’s performance and provides actionable information for setting goals and direction to my training. The Training Power Heat Map does a great job of illustrating where you are spending your training time compared to where you should be spending your time to reach your running goals.

The Stryd and Power Center has provided a whole new world of insights in the first week of usage. It has peaked my curiosity to learn more, and is channeling me to address my greatest opportunities for improvement and track my progress. It feels like I’ve just begun to understand the new possibilities these insights will provide and stirred up a sense of excitement about my training plan over the winter months and eager anticipation for my race season next year.

If you are looking to stir up some excitement for your tech-lover-athlete this holiday season, Stryd is more powerful than mistletoe. Cheers!

Tri Coach Tuesday: Winter Training Tips

by Nicole Odell, NEO Endurance Sports & Fitness

5 WINTER TRAINING TIPS FOR ENDURANCE ATHLETES

 

It seems that winter hasn’t quite arrived yet, as here in Colorado it still seems like the end of summer as I write this! But no doubt winter will be here and we’ll get cold temperatures and snow. I will admit, I grew up in Florida, so I had to learn a new definition of winter once I left the sunshine state. If you do live in less winter-like part of the world, we’ll be thinking of coming to visit when the blizzards hit!

 

For those of us who live in the “cooler” parts of the world, here are my tips for dealing with the winter weather.

 

Pay attention to the weather. Don’t just look at the high and low temps or general chance of precipitation, but read the hourly forecasts (weather.gov is a good resource!) so you can see what’s likely to happen throughout the day and plan your training accordingly.

 

Get appropriate gear for cold and wet weather. Invest in quality gear that will last a long time. If you are in snowy or rainy climate, wind and waterproof outer layers are nice. A nice technical fabric underlayer is also a good idea. Your local running and cycling stores can help, or google “winter cycling gear” and “winter running gear.” There’s a saying “there’s no bad weather, only bad clothing.” The same goes for equipment. You want to have things like winter appropriate bike tires (fat bike?) and traction devices for shoes. That said…

 

Safety First! If there is snow, ice, sand, gravel out on the roads, be extra cautious, and maybe stay inside if it is too much. If you are traveling to your workout destination, make sure you can get there safely. Know what you can handle and for which conditions you have gear. If you don’t feel safe, get some good tunes or videos going and knock out that workouts indoors.

 

Don’t forget to eat and drink. When it’s colder out, we often don’t feel thirsty or hungry. But if you’re doing a long or intense workout in the cold, you’ll still need to eat and drink. Use insulated bottles if there is a chance of your bottle freezing. Solutions (ie sports drinks) will freeze at lower temperatures than plain water. And pick nutritional items that won’t freeze or get more challenging to eat when cold.

 

Modify your workout. If you’re supposed to run today and ride tomorrow, but there is a good chance of “winter weather” tomorrow, swap days if you don’t want to ride indoors. It’s often easier to run outside in colder weather. If you can’t do what you want to do, try something different indoors with body weight strength training. Do stair sprints. Put on a yoga video. You can still get in some kind of workout, even if it’s not what is planned. Or just get out and play in the snow, go snowshoeing, or cross country skiing. Enjoy it!

 

 

Original blog post here

Weekend Preview: Big Saturday

Triathlon Events

Thursday December 7th

 

Old Man Winter Kick Off Party

Boulder


Saturday December 9th

 

IRONMAN Team Colorado

Louisville

 

Join us at the IRONMAN HQ in Louisville for a run and then stay to watch the NBC broadcast 2017 IRONMAN World Championship race in Kona.  Colorado to Kona athlete Tom Bogan will be on site to chat about his amazing opportunity to race in Kona and his passion for the sport.  We will be making a donation to IM HQ neighbors and wonderful community members, Community Food Share, so please bring canned food items to donate.


Chilly Cheeks Duathlon Series Race #1

Denver


Longmont Lights Holiday Parade

Longmont


Sweaty Sweater Run

Ft. Collins



Cycling Events

Thursday December 7th

 

Draft: Colorado Holiday Meetup

Boulder


Old Man Winter Kick Off Party

Boulder


Saturday December 9th

 

Colorado State CX Championships

Westminster


Longmont Lights Holiday Parade

Longmont


Sunday December 10th

 

Colorado State CX Championships

Westminster

Tri Coach Tuesday: Planning Your Next Season

A SIMPLE GUIDE TO PLANNING YOUR RACE SEASON

 

Since we are at the start of a new year, and many athletes are looking into the races and events they would like to do for the year, I thought I’d share some guidelines to go by when you start planning your race season.

 

Identify Your Season Goal

Typically we want to have some kind of goal each year for our event season. It might simply be to finish a marathon, or participate in a local race series. Or perhaps it’s get a personal best at a specific race. If this isn’t your first race season, what did you achieve in the previous season, and how would you like to improve?

 

When you finish the year or season, what do you want to say you’ve accomplished?

Once your season goal(s) is/are identified, then take a look at the following things.

 

Budget

Not just race entry costs, but travel, lodging, additional bike servicing, etc. You want to make sure the racing is in your budget, or there could be some unnecessary stress for you and/or your family!

 

Schedule

Map your planned events out on a calendar with other events in your life.

Do your chosen events fit with other known dates such as work travel and vacations? You want to make sure you will feel prepared going into a race, so for example, an A race immediately after a sedentary vacation may not be a good idea.

 

Realistic for Training

  • Do you have the time to commit for the training and recovery needed?
  • Are you willing to put in the required training?

 

If you’re not sure what will be required, ask a coach!

 

Are your events appropriate for fitness experience?

While some people jump into a marathon or full iron-distance event their very first season, it may not be the best thing. If it’s not necessarily appropriate, but you want to do it anyway, make sure you can commit to the training and that your expectations are realistic.

Answer the question: “Why do I want to do this race?

This is important to know for every race – when you put money down for an entry, have a reason! It can just be a training race, or to race with friends, but have a reason for it.

Ask Yourself: “Do I need help reaching my season goal?” 

 

If you already work with a coach, they should be already involved in your goal setting process. They may not pick your events specifically, but they can help vett your choices to make sure they fit in some of the above. If you don’t, I have room in my schedule for a few more athletes. I’d love to help you this season! (contact me here)

 

Working through the above items and looking at your season as a whole can help make sure you have a healthy and enjoyable event season!

 

Original post on Coach Nicole’s blog here

 

Coach Nicole is a great coach.  If you’re looking for additional coaching options, check out the 303Triathlon Coaches Directory here

303Radio: Tom Bogan, Amazing Fortitude in Kona

Nobody embraced the opportunity to race Kona more than Colorado’s Tom Bogan. He is on crusade to make sure everyone knows dreams can come true and listen to how close it was that he didn’t get to try and achieve his. His story of almost not racing due to a last second misplacement of a key item is almost as amazing as his story of getting there in the first place!

 

 

This episode sponsored by Coeur Sports

Tri Coach Tuesday: Getting a Coach, Am I Worth It?

by D3 Multisport Mental Skills Coach, Will Murray

Triathletes invest in their sport time, effort, emotion, and funds.  You invest in running and cycling shoes, a bike, swim goggles and a wetsuit for starters.  Then you may shell out for a Garmin device, a lactic threshold test and a blood test to check for micronutrients and balanced physiology.

Some athletes believe that their absolutely most important investment is in a smart, competent, experienced and supportive coach, who writes your training plan, provides race advice, works through your emerging issues, keeps you injury-free and has your back.

Sometimes, as an athlete, you might have doubts whether if it’s worth all this investment. Or, more truly, have doubts that you are worth the investment. This doubt can be temporary.  You have one disappointing track session, but the next day your tempo run goes fine, and the doubt shrinks in the rearview mirror.  But sometimes these doubts are more deep and stubborn.

Masters swimming: “Oh, I don’t swim well enough to take up lane space from the real swimmers.” Group runs: “Oh, they don’t want somebody like me slowing things down.” Group rides: “What if I get dropped?” A coach: “A coach, for me? I’m nobody. I’m not the kind of person who deserves a coach. I’m not good enough.”

If any of these prickly little phrases sounds familiar, don’t fret. There are answers.

Preparation

The technique below requires work.  You actually must do the steps, as though you were with your coach and she is expecting you to carry out the instructions.  When you are doing a swim workout, you actually must swim and not just read about swimming—you follow the coach’s direction.  To get ready to do the next steps, round up a pencil and paper (not optional).  Take your time. I’ll wait until you are ready.  Now?  Okay, let’s go.

Step 1. Articulate your goals and reasons for doing triathlon.

You may be striving for a healthy lifestyle and general fitness.  If you have aspirations beyond this, such as finishing a longer distance race, achieving a personal record or qualifying for a championship race, having a clear, written goal statement is indispensable.  You already know the trick—write your goal statement (e.g. qualify for USA Triathlon Age Group Nationals) on a piece of paper and stick it to your refrigerator or your bathroom mirror.

Step 2.  Ask yourself, in the privacy of your own mind, “Am I worthy enough to pursue that goal?”

Notice carefully any response you get.  If no response, wait a few moments, then ask, quietly, the question again.

Step 3.  Notice whose voice is answering the question.

Carefully listen, not so much to the answer, but to the voice providing the response.  Is it your voice?  Or someone else’s voice? Or a blend, a small chorus of different voices?  Notice carefully who does this sound like?  When you have a clear sense of who is answering your question go to the next step.

Step 4a.  If the voice is someone else’s ask, “What is your positive intention for me?”

Wait for a response.  If the response makes sense to you, great.  If not, ask, “What is important about that?”  Wait for an answer.  Keep asking this same question, “What is important about that?” until you get an answer that makes sense to you.  Thank the voice each time you get a response.  Go to Step 6.

Step 4b.  If the responding voice is your voice ask “What is your positive intention for me?”

Wait for a response.  If the response makes sense to you, great.  If not, ask, “What is important about that?”  Wait for an answer.  Keep asking this same question, “What is important about that?” until you get an answer that makes sense to you.  Thank the voice each time you get a response.

Step 5.  Ask the responding voice, “How old are you?” and notice the response.

If the responding voice is younger than your present chronological age, ask this (exactly as stated here): “Without giving anything up, and while keeping everything you have, would you like to gain all the experience and wisdom available to you to advance to [your current age] or beyond?”  If the response is positive, allow the part to grow up to your current age and ask it to tell you when it is done.

Step 6.  Imagine your next big event.

This could be a key workout session, a race, or even that masters swim that you have been putting off.  See yourself, over there, performing exactly as you wish you would.  Start a color movie at the beginning and run it to the end of this event. Make this image run perfectly, as you are the director and you can have the image run exactly to your desires.

If the image runs well, run it again in fast motion so that it takes five or ten seconds total.

Step 7.  Return to the responding voice in Step 4 and ask, “Do you have any objection to having the image run that way?”

If there are no objections, your work is finished.  If you receive objections, repeat Step 4.

Conclusion 

The way you make progress toward your goals is to stretch and pursue improvements.  The way you pursue is to recognize the worth in the pursuit, and the worth in you.  The way you do that is to act as if you are worth it, that you truly do deserve it, and then go do what a deserving person would do.

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.  Our fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.  It is our light, not our darkness, that frightens us.  We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?  Who am I not?’”  Marianne Williamson

Original post on D3Multisport.com here

Here are coaching options.  303Triathlon Coaching Directory

USA TRIATHLON HALL OF FAME NOMINATION WINDOW TO CLOSE DECEMBER 1

Select elite athlete, age-group athlete and contributor nominees to be inducted next August in Cleveland

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — The deadline to nominate elite athletes, age-group athletes and contributors to the ninth induction class of the USA Triathlon Hall of Fame is approaching quickly, with nominations being accepted until Dec. 1. New inductees to the Hall of Fame will be honored during a banquet in Cleveland on Aug. 9, 2018, in conjunction with the USA Triathlon Age Group National Championships from Aug. 11-12.

Launched in 2008, the USA Triathlon Hall of Fame serves to recognize, honor and commemorate those individuals and groups that have demonstrated excellence in every aspect of multisport, thereby inspiring others to elevate their own performance, participation and community involvement.

Categories of eligibility include elite athletes, age-group athletes and contributors. The elite and age-group athlete categories recognize individuals who, while licensed as an elite or age-group athlete respectively by USA Triathlon, competed with great success in national or world events over a period of years; demonstrated outstanding sportsmanship; and contributed in other ways to the betterment of multisport.

To be nominated in the elite category, an athlete must not have competed as an elite for at least three years prior to consideration or must be at least 40 years old.

For both elite and age-group categories, achievements in all disciplines governed by USA Triathlon may be considered — including triathlon, duathlon, aquathlon, aquabike, paratriathlon, off-road triathlon and winter triathlon.

The contributor category is intended to honor an individual who has made significant contributions to the growth, reputation, character and/or success of any of the disciplines governed by USA Triathlon. A wide variety of roles may be considered under this designation, including but not limited to: sport pioneers; event organizers; officials; coaches; trainers; inventors of equipment, processes or systems; members of the media; volunteers; or others who have served the governing body.

Anyone may submit nominations in one or multiple of the eligible categories. All nominations will be reviewed by a selection committee to ensure that nominees meet the criteria. All nominations meeting the criteria will then be forwarded to a voting committee, which will consider the merits of each nominee and make the final designation.

The nomination form is available at usatriathlon.org/halloffame and can be either completed and submitted directly online or emailed to Ellis.davis@usatriathlon.org.

Weekend Preview: Team Colorado and IMAZ

Triathlon Events

Saturday November 18th

 

IRONMAN Team Colorado Training Event

Louisville


Sunday November 19th

 

IRONMAN Arizona

Tempe, Az



Cycling Events

Friday November 17th

 

Winter Bike Expo

Littleton

Join pedal of Littleton for the 1st Annual Winter Bike Expo.  Two days of  great deals, demos, swag and clinics.  Including Pearl Izumi, Salsa Cycles, Flippin’ Flapjacks, Shimano 45NRTH, Surly Bikes and more.

Meet Salsa Cycles sponsored athletes Jay Petervary and  Neil Beltchenko


Saturday November 18th

 

Winter Bike Expo

Littleton

Join pedal of Littleton for the 1st Annual Winter Bike Expo.  Two days of  great deals, demos, swag and clinics.  Including Pearl Izumi, Salsa Cycles, Flippin’ Flapjacks, Shimano 45NRTH, Surly Bikes and more.

Meet Salsa Cycles sponsored athletes Jay Petervary and  Neil Beltchenko


Shimano CX Series: Salisbury

Parker


Sunday November 19th

 

Salty Treads CX

Fruita

Tri Coach Tuesday: Holiday Eating Tips

by Nicole Odell, NEO Endurance Sports

 

For me, Halloween is the start of the fall holiday season as we start being presented with plenty of treats. Leftover Halloween candy at home, at the office, then holiday parties, potlucks and seasonal goodies…temptations abound!

 

 

Holiday food is often comfort food, bringing back memories of good times, and also creating new ones. We don’t need to avoid it, but sometimes we can be tempted into eating a little too much. But it shouldn’t be stressful.

 

 

Here are some guidelines I like to follow to keep everything in check over the holidays:

– Continue to exercise. It doesn’t have to be “training,” but try to do something active for about an hour a day.

– Plan your meals for the week so that the foundation of your eating stays healthy and you are still eating regular meals. Plan around the festivities, and have snacks like celery sticks and other veggies around that are ready to grab.

– Take smaller portions of treats and eat them slowly. If you know you have multiple parties going on, you can still partake in the treats, just eat less of them.

– You are in control of what goes in your mouth. It’s OK to just smile and nod and turn down a second piece of Auntie’s pie.

– Have a normal meal with plenty of protein before a party, especially if you tend to graze a lot.

– Drink a glass of water in between alcoholic beverages if you drink.

 

One day of indulging won’t hurt… it’s the multiple days that add up. So just pick your day and enjoy!

 

And if you remember just one thing, have that be “everything in moderation,” and appreciate the season where we get to spend some extra time with friends and family.

 

Original post here

Ryf tops current prize money standings for 2017

From Triathlon World

The season isn’t over, but according to Challenge-Family’s prize money rankings Daniela Ryf is ahead of her male counterparts on the prize money front in 2017.

When it comes to earning prize money in 2017, Daniela Ryf has moved to the top of the castle, overtaking Mario Mola thanks to her $120,000 payday at the Ironman World Championship earlier this month. Patrick Lange, who earned the same amount as Ryf in winning the Kona race, moved himself to fifth on the prize money standings on the men’s side.

It’s interesting to note that ITU World Champion Flora Duffy, second in the women’s rankings, is also ahead of the second-placed man in the standings, Javier Gomez, who won $45,000 as the Ironman 70.3 world champion. Ryf took the same amount thanks to her win in Chattanooga, too.

Read the full article for the standings