Barry Siff Resigns as USA Triathlon Board of Directors President


Barry Siff talking to folks at Colorado Multisport about The Peak Triathlon in 2017

editors note: Barry Siff, for those newer to triathlon or Colorado, has had a major impact on the sport of triathlon. For years he headed 5430 which produced iconic races such as the Boulder Peak (now owned and run by Without Limits, Info here)

We at 303Endurance Network wish him the best in his future endeavors and thank him for his contribution to our sport and his kindness throughout the years.

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PrintAPRIL 15, 2019, 11:59 A.M. (ET)

USA Triathlon today announced that Barry Siff has resigned as President of the USA Triathlon Board of Directors, effective immediately, in order to accept the role of Chief Executive Officer for USA Team Handball. It is a full-time, paid staff position for the National Governing Body in the U.S. Olympic Movement. 

Jacqueline McCook, Vice President of the Board of Directors, has accepted the role of interim President. 

Siff joined the USA Triathlon Board of Directors in 2012, and was elected President in 2014. A former race director, he was integral in identifying and advancing USA Triathlon’s key organizational priorities, including development of the current 2020 Quad Strategic Plan. Siff also led the hiring process for Rocky Harris, who was named USA Triathlon’s CEO in August of 2017. 

“I have been a triathlete since 1986, and it has been an incredible honor and privilege to help lead USA Triathlon as its Board of Directors President for the past five years,” said Siff. “The current team at USA Triathlon is truly world-class, and I leave knowing that we have laid an incredibly strong foundation to achieve its mission of growing, inspiring and supporting the triathlon community.”

A champion for gender diversity within USA Triathlon governance, he helped to exponentially increase female representation on the Board of Directors. Siff also added an integral perspective to the Board as a former event organizer, and was a strong voice for all race directors while pushing the organization to better serve this key constituency group. 

As a member of the Executive Boards of the International Triathlon Union (ITU) and the American Triathlon Confederation (CAMTRI), Siff has served on several committees guiding the global direction of the sport over the last two years. His roles with the ITU and CAMTRI remain unchanged moving forward. Similarly, Siff was USA Triathlon’s top international ambassador, and directly supported triathlon development programs in Africa and Panama.

Siff was also a driving force for USA Triathlon’s ambitious efforts to grow participation and expand awareness for the sport — highlighted by the launch of the unprecedented Time to Tri initiative in partnership with IRONMAN, as well as the Legacy Triathlon, a new event leading up to the LA 2028 Olympic and Paralympic Games and set to debut this July in Long Beach, California.

Siff, who currently serves as Chair of a newly formed group comprised of Board Chairs from U.S. Olympic National Governing Bodies, has been an integral part of the multisport scene since 1986 as an athlete, coach, race director, writer and executive leader. He first became involved with USA Triathlon in a volunteer leadership role in 2009 as Chair of the Race Director Committee. 

“Barry Siff has made an indelible impact, both in the U.S. and internationally, during a span of nearly 30 years in multisport,” said Harris. “USA Triathlon has been incredibly fortunate to have such a passionate and dedicated leader at the helm of its Board of Directors, as well as his innumerable roles over the years. We are grateful for his service and passion, and we know that he will remain an integral part of the triathlon landscape for the foreseeable future.”

“Under Barry’s leadership, USA Triathlon has focused on better serving each of its constituent groups, as well as creating meaningful programs and initiatives to grow the sport, and investing resources strategically to ensure long-term, sustainable success,” said McCook. “Barry has always brought his unbridled enthusiasm, dedication and passion for the sport to his role as Board President, and for that we are extremely grateful. I look forward to working with the Board, Rocky and his team, to continue our work to grow, inspire and support our amazing triathlon community as I step into the role of interim President.”

McCook has served on the USA Triathlon Board as an Independent Director since 2013. She was elected the first-ever President of the Board of Directors for the USA Triathlon Foundation in 2014, and served in that role until 2018. McCook brings significant consumer-facing strategic, marketing and operational experience to the Board. She has served in senior executive positions in the consumer foods, retail and restaurant industries, including with PepsiCo, YUM! Brands, Diageo and ConAgra Foods. 

Her professional career also includes the consulting firm, McKinsey & Company; the national retailer, Target; and the investment-banking firm, Morgan Stanley. McCook received her Bachelor of Arts in international relations from Stanford University, and her Master of Business Administration with honors from the Harvard Business School. She completed her first triathlon in the early 1990s, and was a founding member of the Stanford Women’s Water Polo Team.  

Colorado State Women’s Triathlon sweeps podium!

By USA Triathlon

TEMPE, Arizona — Colorado State University’s Hayley Belles, Meghan Smith and Katrina Lems earned the first podium sweep in USA Triathlon Collegiate Club National Championships history on Saturday afternoon in Tempe, Arizona. The Rams dominated the women’s Olympic-distance race, while Queens University of Charlotte was unstoppable in the men’s race, led by individual champion Jack Felix.

About 1,200 collegiate athletes from more than 100 club teams competed in the marquee event of Collegiate Club Nationals weekend. The Olympic-distance course was centered at Tempe Beach Park and featured a 1,500-meter swim, 41-kilometer bike and 10-kilometer run. 

Rachel Zilinskas of the University of Minnesota had the top women’s swim of the day, exiting the water in 19 minutes, 2 seconds. The University of Florida’s Nicole Stafford was not far behind though, overtaking the Minnesota athlete in transition. 

Full article courtesy of USA Triathlon, read here: Article Link


Fun multisport options in No. Colo this summer…

Happy Spring fellow athletes! Last time you heard from us, we introduced ourselves and talked a bit about what helps to set our race events apart from others (more on that here: https://303triathlon.com/meet-a-new-triathlon-race-company/). Now we’re back to share a bit about some exciting new developments and more details about our upcoming races and events!
We have been making strides in our goal to involve local businesses and organizations, as mentioned in our last article, with our most recent partnership with MP Multisport for our inaugural race season. MP Multisport will provide individualized coaching and nutrition options to help meet the needs of our athletes. This may be especially beneficial for those who are trying their hand at a triathlon for the very first time, such as at our beginner-friendly Epic Mini Tri (more info below). To find out more about MP Multisport’s impact in the endurance training community, as well as services they provide, check out mpmultisport.com.
Now onto the fun we’re going to have in 2019 with our race events! Here’s some info on our upcoming events over the next few months: 


-The Epic Mini Triathlon – Fort Collins 5-26-19The name says it all! The EPIC MINI Triathlon. Taking place at a central venue located in Fort Collins Colorado, this race packs a punch of fun into a short course. It’s a great beginner-friendly triathlon, or a great tune-up for seasoned triathletes. A 450 meter pool swim, 10 mile bike and 2 mile run coupled with a family friendly and supportive atmosphere will make this race a blast. 


-The Dirty Duo Off Road Ride & Run – Lory State Park – 7-27-19Time to get dirty! The Dirty Duo Off Road Ride & Run is a challenging event on the trails of Lory State Park. No age groups and no gender groups! Similar in course layout to the popular Lory Xterra Triathlon, this bike then run race ditches the swim for a “LeMans style” start. When the gun goes off (or in this case an air horn), athletes will run 100 meters to their bikes in transition. Fast flat sections, tight technical turns, challenging climbs and soaring views of Horsetooth Reservoir. This race will challenge your legs with the climbs but keep you motivated the whole way with some truly breathtaking views & sights.


-Boyd Lake Bash Multisport Festival – Loveland – 9-7-19Escape to the lake! The Boyd Lake Bash Multisport Festival will be an event you’ll look forward to all season long. Why? Beautiful mountain views, ideal September weather and 10 races to choose from all in the same morning…yes TEN, including a Youth Splash & Dash! It’s outdoor physical fun for the whole family! The entire race takes place within the state park. Did we mention on-site camping options and a beer garden at the finish line? Yup! 


-Colorado Ocean Walker Swim Challenge – Fort Collins/Loveland, 9-11 and 9-12 (training camps in Fort Collins) & 9-14 (swim race in Loveland) 2019Fear no swim! The Colorado Ocean Walker Swim Challenge is a highly focused training camp series & open water race event. You will swim more efficiently, be more confident in open water and see quicker swim splits. Join us for a full two-day training camp to learn the Ocean Walker swim technique. At the end of the week there will be an open water swim event to put your new skills and confidence to the test!The 2-day training camp and the subsequent open water swim race can be registered for separately. You are NOT required to attend the training camp in order to participate in the open water swim race and you do NOT have to do the swim race if you’re only interested in the training camp – pick and choose what works for you, sign up for one or both!
These races are filling up, so don’t hesitate to register! Click the link below to read more race details, register, get more info about each of our events or sign up to volunteer and get discounted registration at a future event. Thanks for reading more about Breakaway Athletic Events. We look forward to seeing you on the pavement!
https://breakawayathleticevents.com/races
And stay tuned for our upcoming Spotlight Series over the next few weeks, where we will be sharing more exciting news and talk more in depth on each of these events.——————

Kara Goucher Shares Why She’s Leaving Roads for the Leadville Trail Marathon

From Runner’s World
By Lisa Jhung

Photo by Billy Yang/Lifetime Fitness

The two-time Olympian will make the high-altitude event her trail running race debut.

All I had going for me in my attempt to keep up with Kara Goucher were the rocks. The two-time Olympian and 2:24:52 marathoner is relatively new to trail running, and on our car ride over to a trailhead in Boulder, Colorado’s, Chautauqua Park, she claimed to be “terrible at it.” And so, to abate my own fears of being dropped by the pro—even on a casual run—I chose a particularly rocky and technical route.

The purpose of our jaunt was to chat about Goucher’s transition from road racing to trails. After a disappointing DNF because of an injured hamstring at January’s Houston Marathon, the 40-year-old athlete hinted via Instagram that she wanted to take her running “in a new direction.” She told Runner’s World after the race, “I have my eye on a race in June, but it is not on the roads.”

That goal race, she revealed to Runner’s World, is the Leadville Trail Marathon on June 15. The 26.2-mile course, located roughly two hours from her home in Boulder, winds through rocky, rugged terrain and tops out at 13,185 feet in elevation. It’s a far cry from the road routes Goucher is used to—and will certainly demand a different style of running.

“I’m scared of downhills, especially,” she admitted on our drive to the trail. She explained that while she grew up running on trails in Duluth, Minnesota, and frequented nearby mountain trails while on the University of Colorado cross-country team, for many years she became what she calls a “surface diva.”

Read the full article here

Meet Kyle Coon! Learn more about his journey to the Olympics and amazing story of courage!

By Kyle Coon

Greetings 303 friends, fans and family! My name is Kyle Coon and I’m a totally blind Professional Triathlete. (Wow, no matter how many times I say or write that I still have a hard time believing that I somehow managed to make my hobby and passion into something resembling a career.)
While not a Colorado native, Colorado has been my permanent home since 2016 and it’s been where my heart calls home since I first visited to learn to ski in the early to mid 2000s. From 2016-2018 I lived in Carbondale, just down valley from Aspen, but at the beginning of 2019 I made the move to Colorado Springs for the opportunity to better pursue my Pro Triathlete lifestyle/career. But before we get into that let’s back up a moment, because some of you are probably wondering “Who is this guy?”

When I was ten months old I was diagnosed with a rare form of childhood eye cancer called Bilateral Sporadic Retinoblastoma. Essentially I had cancer in both eyes with no family history. I underwent an intense treatment plan—consisting of chemo and radiation therapies, and other various clinical and experimental trials—which would go on to last several years as the cancer would regress and then come roaring back with a vengeance. Eventually the cancer, and the effects of the treatment, damaged my eyes beyond repair. So my family made the decision to remove my eyes which was really the only sure-fire way to beat the cancer once and for all. My left eye was removed when I was five and my right when I was six leaving me totally blind.

I went through a rough time as a newly blind kid. I didn’t understand “why” this had happened to me. Fortunately though my parents did their best to treat me no differently than they would have if I could see. Yes, I still had chores and was expected to bring home good grades from school. I was also very fortunate to meet a world-class blind athlete just a few months after I lost my sight. His name? Erik Weihenmayer—most well known for becoming the first blind man to climb Mt Everest and the rest of the Seven Summits. (At the time I met Erik he hadn’t yet climbed Everest and had only climbed three of the Seven Summits.)

Erik and I met and Erik encouraged me that just because I was blind didn’t mean I had to stop doing things I loved. It didn’t mean I had to give up being a kid. I just needed to become a bit more creative in how I went about my life. He suggested something to help me focus and be active at the same time—rock climbing. I’d go on to become a competitive rock climber, along with two of my sisters, and along the way get into numerous other activities.

In 2004, I learned to downhill ski. In 2006, I hiked the Ancascocha Trail into Machu Picchu. In 2007, I climbed and summited Mt Kilimanjaro. I also went on to climb a few Colorado 14ers and some Cascade volcanoes. I graduated from the University of Central Florida in 2013 with a degree in Interpersonal/Organizational Communication and was ready to take on the world.

I went into the post college workforce with the excellent millennial mentality of “I’m going to apply for every job CEO and above.” When that didn’t work I lowered my expectation to “Upper level Management and above.” When that still didn’t work I made my way down the corporate ladder until I applied for a batboy job at a grocery store and didn’t get the job.

I was frustrated, unemployed, several thousand dollars in debt and felt awful since I’d packed on 25ish lbs post college. I was a year removed from graduating and I’d just about lost hope. I knew I needed to do something to distract myself so I decided I’d start running, an activity I normally associated with punishment and agony. But running was exactly what I needed. It was a problem to solve and a way to reach out to the community to make new friends.

My first running guide was an ER doctor whom I connected with through a website that partnered sighted guides with blind runners. Funnily enough though he’d never actually guided a blind guy before so we both went into it as an experiment. Mike and I started running together once or twice a week experimenting with various guiding methods. We entered some short 5ks, 10ks and half marathons and then took on the Disney World Goofy Challenge—Disney Half Marathon on Saturday and Marathon on Sunday. After that Mike mentioned that he thought I could do a triathlon, maybe even an Ironman some day. Mike had just completed Kona a couple of months after we’d started running together so I saw how cool the sport was.

This was the beginning of 2015 when I decided that I’d become a triathlete. Mike taught me to swim, we did thousands of miles on my tandem bike and we continued running together. In 2016, Mike and I took on my first Ironman in Boulder because I love Colorado and my family had recently moved to the Roaring Fork Valley so Boulder was an easy race for them to travel to to spectate. Mike and I somehow stumble bumbled our way to a 15:47:11 finish on Pearl Street and despite being more tired and sore than I’d ever been in my life I was hooked.

My personal life was a mess at the time and I wasn’t particularly happy with my desk job (yes I did eventually find my way into the world of the employed) so I picked up my life and moved to Carbondale and rented a room in my parents house. I got plugged into the local running community and worked on my run. I even found some people willing/crazy enough to pilot my tandem. And so I set my sights on doing another Ironman, this time Ironman Arizona 2017.

I completed Ironman Arizona 2017 in 11:46:43 becoming only the ninth person who is blind or visually impaired to break the 12 hour mark at the 140.6 distance. But that wasn’t good enough I set my sights higher and began pushing myself to do better. Along the way I hired a coach and started attending training and skills camps. I was recruited to be a member of the first all blind/visually impaired stoker tandem relay team to take part in the infamous “Race Across America” racing from Oceanside, California to Annapolis, MD in less than nine days. I even dipped my toe into the waters of the International Triathlon Union circuit competing in a couple races including taking a Silver Medal at a World Cup.

Then in November 2018, my guide—Alan Greening—and I set out to do something that hadn’t been done before. We raced to a finish of 10:59:17 at Ironman Arizona becoming only the third person with a visual impairment to break the 11 hour mark in an Ironman, but becoming the first person who is totally blind to do so.

I’ve certainly come a long way from that scared seven year old newly blind kid and some might say that I’ve reached almost as high as you can as a totally blind triathlete. But in August 2018 the International Paralympic Committee announced that male Visually Impaired Triathlon would become part of the slate of events at the 2020 Paralympic Games in Tokyo, Japan. And in October I was accepted to become an official member of the USA Paratriathlon Resident Team. So on January 7, 2019 I made the move to Colorado Springs and took up residence at the U.S. Olympic Training Center with the goal of qualifying for the 2020 Paralympics in the sport of Paratriathlon and I can think of no better audience to want to share my journey with than you, the 303 Triathlon/endurance community.

So will you join me in following my progress on the #roadtotokyo as I #trifortokyo?

Only in Colorado – Runner kills mountain lion during attack in Colorado park

From OutThere Colorado
By Spencer McKee

A male runner killed a mountain lion on Monday afternoon after it attacked him in Horsetooth Mountain Open Space near Fort Collins, Colorado. The man was bitten multiple times, receiving wounds on his face, arms, legs, back, and wrist.


Photo credit: milehightraveler

While the victim was defending himself, the attacking animal, described as a “juvenile mountain lion,” was killed.

According to the account of the attack, the runner heard a noise behind him and stopped to investigate. This is when the mountain lion lunged at the runner, grabbing ahold of him with his teeth. The runner fought back in self-defense, killing the animal in the process. The runner sustained serious injuries, though they weren’t life threatening.

Authorities returned to the scene and found the mountain lion where the runner had described it would be. The incident occurred on West Ridge Trail. A necropsy is being conducted to determine exactly what killed the lion.

According to the Larimer County website, Horsetooth Mountain Open Space is 2,711 acres in size with 29 miles of trails. Though close to Fort Collins, it is located in the foothills of Horsetooth Mountain.

Mountain lion attacks are rare, as mountain lions prefer to avoid human interactions.

An apex predator found around the state of Colorado, mountain lions are seldom seen, but often a topic of conversation. Here are a few things you should know about this amazing creature.

Read the full article here

Tri Coach Tuesday: New Year, New Diet?

by Dina Griffin
The Nutrition Mechanic
Sport Dietitian / Registered Dietitian
www.nutritionmechanic.com

The word ‘diet’ has many different contexts. For example:

  • restriction: “I can’t eat XYZ foods.”
  • a type of pattern or cuisine: “I eat in line with the Mediterranean diet.”
  • fad/trend: “I’m starting the Grapefruit Diet to detox!”
  • clinical prescription: “My doctor prescribed an autoimmune diet for my thyroid condition.”

Aside from the new year hubbub that is filled with trendy diet pitches and 21-day diet challenges, have you wondered whether it is time to change up your dietary pattern to support your health and performance goals? Let me provide a few considerations to help you self-assess a bit further.

What is the “issue” you are trying to improve or solve?

Weight loss is on the minds of many athletes this time of the year in advance of big races and events planned for 2019. If this is you, then I recommend taking some time to reflect on where you’ve been in your diet hopping experience and where you are now with your food relationship. Often times, athletes jump to the latest and greatest diet fad without pondering their past or how food fits into their life currently.

It may be surprising to some, but much of the research shows that there are many kinds of diets that can work to promote weight loss. The keys are finding what is sustainable for you (to avoid the yo-yo trend of loss-gain-loss-gain-rinse-repeat), what is safe and optimal (in terms of supporting your needs as an athlete), and what your habits and behaviors are around food that need to be modified (I call this the “nitty gritty that no one likes to address”).

If weight loss is not your primary goal, perhaps it is another set of signs and symptoms that you are experiencing. For example:

  • poor exercise performance (feeling flat, can’t hit intensities, fade quickly into an aerobic session)
  • poor exercise recovery (soreness, achiness, unusual fatigue)
  • energy lulls, poor concentration during everyday living
  • gut issues such as bloating, gas, constipation, diarrhea
  • sugar and/or caffeine cravings
    Maybe you just intuitively know that it is time for a change – you are now a masters athlete, there are midlife hormonal changes, or quite frankly, your diet is pretty subpar.

What do you know objectively about your signs and symptoms? For example, do you have recent athlete-specific blood work to reveal any deficiencies? Have you changed your nutrition relatively recently that could be a contributing (negative) factor? Have you had a professional assessment from a Sport Dietitian to piece apart all of the “inputs”?

As you can hopefully see, there are potentially many reasons to move forward with a change in your nutrition. Similarly, there are many layers that makes the decision process as to which kind of dietary pattern a more complicated process than simply mimicking what a friend or training partner does. It takes some time and effort to think through where you’ve been, where you are, and where you want to go… for both health and performance as they go hand in hand.

Food for thought and more to come!

Why train for a cause?

Team in Training Athlete Dr. Brett Kessler at the turnaround in Hawi

By Bill Plock

Dr. James DeGregori PhD
(Photo by Casey A. Cass/University of Colorado)

Those reasons often transition into causes and those causes are often taken on by a group of people working to help the same cause and obviously most of those causes involve medical conditions, awareness and advocacy.

Clearly many things motivate people to exercise, train and perhaps ultimately compete. We all know of someone inspired by unfortunate circumstances that might have impacted their life or of those they care about. The reasons are countless and often tear jerking and deeply personal.

This past week, 303radio sat down with Dr. James DeGregori PhD and Brett Kessler, DDS to talk about the community of like minded people they train with–Team and Training.

Team in Training is the largest charity endurance training program in the world. They have over 650,000 athletes that have raised over $1 billion to fight cancer, Leukemia and Lymphoma more specifically. Like many teams the connections and friends that are made ultimately make cause the greatest memories.

In this interview James and Brett talk about those connections, their own personal reasons and why’s, but more, they both know Leukemia and Lymphoma first hand as medical professionals that work directly with those effected and by doing research to help find a cure.

Not only will you learn how Team in Training helped them compete in century rides, marathons and even the IRONMAN World Championship in Kona, but you will learn a little about the disease from people on the front lines and extremely driven advocates that will likely offer you some inspiration into your own why.

Tri Coach Tuesday: 4 Essential Mobility Exercises for Cyclists Over 40


By Danielle Zickl , Bicycling.com

You’re probably already aware of the many benefits strength exercises have on your performance. But there’s another group of exercises that often go overlooked: mobility exercises.

According to Rod Murray, USA Cycling coach and owner of Body4Life Training, mobility exercises are anything that brings a joint (where two bones meet) through its full range of motion, improving your overall posture and flexibility—on and off the bike.

“Doing these types of exercises improves your performance so you can ride better, longer, and more comfortably,” Murray says. “You’re constantly adjusting yourself in the saddle—reaching for your water bottle, turning your neck to see cars—so you want to be able to do things comfortably and pain free.”

And while it’s good to start doing mobility exercises at any age, it’s particularly important for those in their 40s and older to do regularly. That’s because the older you get, the higher your risk of injury becomes. Adding mobility exercises into the mix can help bulletproof your joints and prevent such injuries from occurring.

Complete article and exercises here

Blind Colorado athlete sets Ironman record

From 9News
by Bryan Wendland

Kyle Coon has been totally blind since age 6. That hasn’t kept him from rock climbing at 9, climbing Kilimanjaro at 15, and, oh yeah, becoming the fastest totally blind person to ever finish an Ironman race.

KUSA — When Kyle Coon lost his sight at age 6, he says he got depressed.

But that didn’t last long.

“I actually became a competitive rock climber when I was 8 or 9-years-old,” he said.

He climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro when he was 15, captained his high school wrestling team for two years and started doing triathlons a few years ago.

“It’s definitely become a passion and a real lifestyle, and just because I’m doing it blind, it’s just, you know – I’m just any other, any other athlete out there trying to have fun and compete against myself and fellow athletes,” he said.

Then, in 2016, he did his first Ironman race: 2.4 miles swimming, 112 miles biking and 26.2 miles running. It all has to be finished under 17 hours.

“It took me just under 16 hours to complete the full thing, and I think I walked the entire marathon,” Coon said.

Read the full article