What Triathletes Need to Know about SIPE–Cause of Death in Swims?

By Susan Lacke, Triathlete Magazine:

Researchers have spent hundreds of hours trying to understand what is causing deaths in triathlon swims. 

Though deaths during triathlon races don’t occur often, they do occur – at a rate of about one in every 76,000 participants. Of those deaths, more than 72 percent happen in the swim.

It’s understandable, then, that people would start to question the safety of the triathlon swim – are races doing enough to keep their swimmers safe? Many races have responded to these concerns with new initiatives, like rolling or wave swim starts instead of mass swim starts, increased lifeguard presence, and an abundance of caution – even going so far to cancel swims in weather conditions that would have been considered acceptable a decade ago.

And yet, swim deaths still occur. Researchers are now beginning to better understand one possible reason why: SIPE, or Swimming Induced Pulmonary Edema. Researchers like Dr. Richard Moon of Duke University have dedicated hundreds of hours trying to understand this phenomenon – and hopefully, to reduce the likelihood of it happening during triathlon races.

What is SIPE?

In layman’s terms, SIPE is a condition in which the lungs fill with fluid and blood. “This occurs when there is greater to normal pressure within the pulmonary capillaries, causing a breakdown of the membrane separating the blood from the gas spaces, or alveoli,” explains Moon. “Some have referred to SIPE as ‘drowning from the inside.’ This condition occurs in swimmers and divers, particularly – but not always – during heavy exertion, such as in the swim portion of the triathlon.”

To learn more about SIPE, its symptoms and what to do go HERE

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.  

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.——————

Rocky Mountain State Games: Indoor Triathlon

Colorado Springs

 

USA Triathlon has developed an indoor triathlon program called USATri60 to introduce individuals to the sport of triathlon at a grassroots level.  The purpose will be to expose participants to the sport of triathlon in a one hour, non-threatening setting and with a built-in support system built to drive the concept that ‘anyone can be a triathlete’.  The YMCA of the Pikes Peak Region and the Rocky Mountain State Games are partnering to offer this event as a part of the 2019 Rocky Mountain State Games. All athletes will receive a USA Triathlon goodie bag and will compete for Gold, Silver, and Bronze Rocky Mountain State Games medals. A maximum number of athletes will be permitted due to facility capacities. All participants will be assigned a race number that will be visible on all swim caps as well as marked on the top of each participants hand. All results will be listed on the Rocky Mountain State Games results page and the USATri60 results page after the event.

 

Event details and registration here

Cortez Burst Triathlon

Cortez

 

SWIM in the Cortez outdoor pool in the morning sun on the 4th of July.   Then HOP on your bike and RIDE north of Cortez along paved rolling County Roads enjoying cattle and farming country.  Wrapping up your race with gentle hills, RUN through city natural and groomed parks and pathways.

The Cortez Burst Triathlon is a fundraiser for the Friends of Recreation Group in Cortez, Colorado. The Friends of Recreation raises money for scholarships to the Cortez Recreation Center for those who would otherwise not be able to afford the fees. The initial fund raising project was the “Stones for Scholarship” where by individuals and businesses purchased inscribed stones set around the flagpole in front of the Recreation Center. The Friends of Recreation is a Scholarship Fund under Onward! A Legacy Foundation, the community foundation for the four corners.

 

Event details and registration here

Clydesdale and Athena National Championships

Chattanooga, TN

 

USA Triathlon is excited to head to Chattanooga, Tennessee for the 2019 Clydesdale & Athena National Championships! Hosted in conjunction with the Chattanooga Waterfront Triathlon, the sprint and Olympic-distance triathlons will take place along the Tennessee River in the heart of downtown Chattanooga, the “Best Adventure Town” in the US (as awarded by Outside Magazine in 2015).

The 2019 edition of the Chattanooga Waterfront Triathlon celebrates 15 years in the heart of downtown Chattanooga, brought to you by Chattanooga Track Club and Team Magic.  Be ready for a fast, down river swim, a spectator friendly two-loop bike course and a scenic run along the city’s Tennessee Riverwalk.  This downtown triathlon takes the place of the popular Chattanooga Dam Triathlon of years past and the original Riverbend Triathlon from over 30 years ago. Traditionally an intermediate distance race only, a sprint distance was added in 2016, bringing an additional option for those new to the sport or those that prefer the shorter distance. The intermediate/Olympic-distance has held the honor of USAT Southeast Regional Championship many times in the past, and in 2018 served as the Mideast Regional Championship.

 

Event details and registration here

USAT Off-Road Triathlon National Championships

Waco, TX

 

USA Triathlon is headed to Waco, Texas for the 2019 USA Triathlon Off-Road National Championships! Hosted at Cameron Park on June 8, the 2019 Off-Road National Championship will take your breath away as you go up and down climb after climb, in and out of cedar breaks and into dark bamboo forests. From rocks, roots, limestone ledges, tight twisty turns and short power climbs, to narrow bridges and fast descents, this course has got it all and is often considered one of the most unique courses in the country.

 

Event details and registration here

Lifetime CAP TEX Tri

Austin, TX

 

General registration for the 2019 Life Time Tri CapTex opened November 1, 2018 at 12:00 PM CT. The 2019 event is limited to 2,000 participants.
Race through the Texas Capital at Life Time Tri CapTex. This Memorial Day Weekend race draws athletes from all over to kick off summer in Austin, Texas. The race begins with a swim in Lady Bird Lake with beautiful views of the downtown Austin skyline. The bike course takes athletes right to the heart of downtown Austin and directly into the Texas Capitol. The race concludes with a run through Butler Park and the Palmer Events Center before the rousing finish and post-race party at Vic Mathias Shores.
The race features the International Distance, a .93 mile swim, a 24.3 mile bike and a 6.2 mile run; the Sprint Distance features a .46 mile swim, 12.3 mile bike and 3.1 mile run; or the SuperSprint Distance features a .25 mile swim, 6.3 mile bike and 3.1 mile run.
Event details and registration here

Tri the Rock

Castle Rock

 

It’s waiting for you… all you have to do is try!

Come for a day of fun, food prizes and sports. This annual youth triathlon is for young athletes ages 5 to 14.

From kids who have never even heard of a triathlon to seasoned competitive triathletes, Tri the Rock encourages kids to get out and give it a TRI.

 

Event details and registration here

Ordinary Mortals Triathlon

Pueblo

 

Ordinary Mortals Triathlon (OMT) is a reverse order sprint distance (5 km run, 12.5-mile bike, 300-yard pool swim) triathlon for all us “Ordinary Mortals” – from the first time triathlete to more competitive triathletes on a fun and challenging course. The race is the Saturday before Mother’s Day so all the ladies crossing the finish line get a flower!

Bring the kids for the youth triathlon, Mini Mortals Triathlon, after the adult race.   This is a family friendly event often attracting several families of two or three generations racing together the same day!

 

Event details and registration here