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Why You Should Try a Masters Swimming Program

Make Masters Swimming your new favorite way to train for JGT

Don’t let the word “Masters” scare you. Rediscover your love of being in the water, while getting a workout in by joining a Masters Swimming Program. You’ll be a pro at this year’s Jack’s Generic Tri swim start after becoming comfortable with swimming in groups. Masters programs are all over the nation and offer a wide variety of training techniques, workouts, and much more.

What is Masters Swimming?new swimmer

Masters Swimming is a national program that provides swimming clubs for adults. Membership is open to people 18 years or older, and 25 years or older to compete at national U.S. Masters Swimming events. From beginner swimmers to advanced, Masters Swimming is for anyone looking to improve their skill set in the water.

With guidance from an experienced coach, you are guaranteed the improvement of your swim strokes. Along with your confidence in the water. Whether you are trying to get better at swimming, or simply love to be in the water, there are many benefits of taking up Masters Swimming.

What’s in it for me?

Most importantly, being in the water works out your entire body. No matter what the drill may be, aqua workouts can improve your flexibility, endurance, and your overall muscle strength. Different level classes offer basic swim advice and tips on how to change up your swim training plan. In addition to your JGT swim workouts, you’ll likely discover new swim training methods you may have never heard of.

masters swimming strokes to learn

If your goal is to work on becoming more fit, Master’s Swimming is for you. If your goal is to keep up with your current state of fitness, Masters Swimming program is also for you. Perfect your current technique, or learn a few new ones with swimmers like yourself.

Practice is key to make you more comfortable in the water over time. Last but not least, having a club you belong to is a great motivator to encourage you to keep up with your training, and have fun in the process!

Jump in!

Come on in, the water's fine!

There are many programs around the nation that offer swim groups you can join. Austin Triathlon Club has a great list of the different facilities nearby that offer Masters Swimming based on your experience level. Depending on where you are reading this, use Club Finder to find Masters Swimming organizations near you. For our triathletes out there, getting used to swimming with others will make the swim far less intimidating. That’s just one reason why Masters Swimming is the best practice you can get for the swim portion of Jack’s Generic Tri.

Transition Details – What You Should Know for a Smooth Race Day

Knowing transition details will make for a smooth race day

The best way to ensure a successful and generic Jack’s Generic Tri is to be prepared. Here are some transition details that will help guarantee a smooth experience the morning of August 25th. Jack’s Generic Tri is located at Walter E Long Park in the beautiful city of Austin, Texas. Transition opens bright and early at 5:30 a.m. and closes at 7:00. Don’t forget to grab your goggles and head to the water before the race begins at 7:30.

Body marking

Volunteers will body mark the participant before they enter transition. Body markings are written in marker on arms and legs to identify the participant with their bib number and age.  Arms and quads get marked with the participant’s race number and the right calve gets the age of the participant.  Relays get an “R” for relay in place of age.

Triathletes should have bib information and age (age on Dec. 31st of race year) ready for the volunteer to make the process go faster for everyone.

Bib Numbers

Have bib numbers and wristband ready. Put the bike sticker on the seat post of your bike before you get to transition on race morning.  Put the helmet sticker number on the front of your helmet. You will also need to wear your wristband in order to get into transition.

Racks

Transition will have racks assigned to each age group. It is open racking within your age group. You must be body marked and wearing your athlete wristband before you enter transition. Only participants are allowed in. Friends and family (including children) must wait outside of transition.

City Limit Cycles will be available outside of transition for any last-minute needs. They’ll have bike pumps for airing up your tires. Once transition closes, you will not be allowed back in. Make sure and arrive early.

Pro tip: Remember where your bike is by keeping track of which rack your bike belongs on. This will be predetermined according to age. (?)

There will be designated racks for the participant to put their bike on. It is very beneficial to become familiar with the flow of transition. This means after the swim,  should know where they will be entering transition and where they will be heading out on the bike.  After the bike, they should know where they will exit for the run.

Relay corral

Relay team members will rack together. Team members will wait in the relay pen near the rack. Their team member will return their items to the rack and then meet the next team member in the pen to exchange the chip.

Bike check out

Bikes will not be allowed out of transition until the final cyclist has completed the bike course. It is expected that this will be around 11:00 a.m. Participants will be allowed back into transition after they finish, but bikes may not be removed from the racks.

Location

Know where transition is located by checking out this map on our website!

Ascension Seton Named Official Medical Provider

As Official Medical Provider, Ascension Seton to focus on participant well-being

High Five Events announces Ascension Seton as the Official Medical Provider of the 17th annual Jack’s Generic Triathlon. Ascension Seton and their experienced team will have an on-course presence throughout the event. They will have a tent near the finish line. Jack’s Generic Tri will take place on Sunday, August 25th, at Walter E. Long Metropolitan Park in Austin.

“Ascension Seton is proud to support Jack’s Generic Triathlon as the Official Medical Provider,” said Adam Bauman, vice president, orthopedics & sports performance, Ascension Seton. “We are excited to expand our partnership to include not only our running community, but also our cyclists and swimmers in this great race.”

As the Official Medical Provider, Ascension Seton doctors and nurses will work together with Travis County EMS to focus on participant’s well-being. Ascension Seton is part of the largest nonprofit health system in the U.S. and the world’s largest Catholic health system. They’ve expanded their Austin footprint, partnering with the Austin Marathon and Austin Bold FC.

“One of Jack’s Generic Tri’s main focuses is the participant, from their overall experience to their safety,” said Jack Murray, co-owner of High Five Events. “Our growing partnership with Ascension Seton ensures the well-being of our participants continues to be the highest of priorities.”

17th annual Jack’s Generic Tri

Jack’s Generic Triathlon will begin at 7:30 a.m. It will feature a 600m swim, 11.2-mile bike ride, and a 5K. The aquabike will consist of a 600m swim and 11.2-mile bike ride. Relay teams of two or three can complete all three disciplines. Jack’s Generic Tri was created 17 years ago with the participant in mind and is well-known as one of the more participant-friendly triathlons. Registration is open for Jack’s Generic Triathlon. Volunteer positions are available as well.

Each participant receives a commemorative 17th Anniversary shirt, water bottle, and swim cap. They will earn a finisher’s medal, post-race food and beer, and the signature swag toss. Professional timing, a wonderful volunteer crew, hundreds of supportive spectators, and an electric finish line festival will ensure the 17th Anniversary of Jack’s Generic Triathlon is one to remember.

16th Annual Jack’s Generic Triathlon Memorable

1,000+ people showed up to celebrate 16th annual JGT, including a 2x Olympic gold medalist

On Sunday, August 26th, nearly 700 triathletes participated in the 16th Annual Jack’s Generic Triathlon (JGT) at Walter E. Long Metropolitan Park in northeast Austin. Spectators came from around Central Texas to cheer on friends and loved ones. The Drunk Athlete Podcast Relay Team featuring Ricky Berens, 2x Olympic gold medalist, Andrew Willis, national champion ultra cyclist, and Cate Barrett, 2020 Olympic Marathon Trials hopeful, lived up to the hype with a scorching time of 56:11.16th annual Jack's Generic Tri featured a unicorn!

“This was fun, even better because I didn’t have to bike or run!” said Berens, who finished the 600m open water swim in a blazing seven minutes and 58 seconds. “Thanks to High Five Events for a great event and to the Drunk Athlete Podcast for assembling an awesome relay team with Andrew and Cate.”

Peter Murray took the overall victory with the time of 57:15. Second and third place overall featured a sprint to the finish. Pablo Gomez (58:27) narrowly edged out Adrian Cameron (58:28). Haley Koop (1:06:14) was the first female to cross the finish line . Second place finisher Brandi Swicegood (1:08:51) and third place finisher Brandi Ruthven (1:10:51) rounded out the women’s field. All participants cooled off from the Texas heat underneath a 6-foot tall inflatable unicorn that sprayed water.

“As always, JGT was a great race and the 16th anniversary was well-organized by High Five Events,” said Gomez. “I look forward to this race every year because of the excitement, energy, and competition. I especially loved the Sweet 16 cake!”

16th annual JGT can now legally drive

Participants received commemorative 16th annual shirts, water bottles, ROKA swim caps, beer, finisher’s medal, post-race food, Sweet 16 cake, and the signature swag toss. Professional timing, a wonderful volunteer crew, hundreds of supportive spectators, and an electric finish line festival made the 16th annual of Jack’s Generic Triathlon one to remember. Jack’s Generic Tri was created with the participant in mind and is well-known as one of the more participant-friendly triathlons.

Jack’s Generic Tri would like to thank all of the volunteers for coming out because they made yesterday’s event memorable. Their willingness to arrive extra early, lend their time and energy, and cheer on every participant truly made the 16th anniversary unforgettable. JGT would also like to thank sponsors City of Austin, Travis County EMS, Austin Police Department, Travis County Sheriff’s Department, City Limit Cycles, Medicine in Motion, Clif Bar, nuun hydration, RunLab Austin, Dynamic Sports Medicine, Oskar Blues Austin, and Ben Phillips, Real Estate Advisor for Engel and Volkers Austin. Jack’s Generic Triathlon participants can see their times here.

Jack’s Generic Triathlon Celebrates Sweet 16 this Sunday

Sweet 16 to feature super relay team consisting of an Olympic gold medalist, ultra cycling champion, Olympic Marathon Trials hopeful

The 2018 triathlon season continues with Jack’s Generic Triathlon’s Sweet 16. The event will take place this Sunday, August 26th, at Walter E. Long Metropolitan Park in northwest Austin. More than 800 participants will participate in the 16th edition of this beloved Central Texas race, including Ricky Berens, 2x Olympic gold medalist, former University of Texas swimmer, and world record holder in the 4×200-meter freestyle relay.

Andrew Willis is the bike leg for JGT's Sweet 16.

Andrew Willis is the bike leg for JGT’s Sweet 16. Image credit – Joni Tooke

“I’m very excited to be competing, honestly pretty nervous!” said Berens, swim member of Drunk Athlete Relay Team. “This will be my first time ‘competing’ in five years and in a much different environment. I have swum in open water before, but never in an actual race. I’m just going to do my best to not let my teammates down and see how fast I can go!”

Berens’ Drunk Athlete teammates for JGT’s sweet 16 include: Andrew Willis, owner of Holland Racing, national champion ultra cyclist, 2018 24 hours in the Canyon champion (pedaled 448 miles at the World Ultra Cycling Association’s National Championship), and Cate Barrett, former Baylor University runner, current coach and runner for Rogue Running, 2017 Orange Leaf Half Marathon female champion (1:25:18), training for the 2020 Olympic Marathon Trials. All athletes have been featured on the Austin-based Drunk Athlete podcast.

Sweet 16

Jack’s Generic Triathlon’s sweet 16 will begin at 7:30 a.m. The new distance for Jack’s Generic Tri, which was first held in 2003, will feature a 600m swim, 11.2-mile bike ride, and a 5K. The aquabike will consist of a 600m swim and 11.2-mile bike ride. Relay teams of two or three can complete all three disciplines. The venue move from Lake Pflugerville, just north of Austin, will mark the first venue change for Jack’s Generic Tri in five years.

Cate Barrett is the run leg for JGT's Sweet 16.

Cate Barrett is the run leg for JGT’s Sweet 16.

Participants will receive commemorative 16th Anniversary shirts, water bottles, and ROKA swim caps. They’ll also receive post-race food, beer, finisher’s medal, and the signature swag toss. Professional timing, a wonderful volunteer crew, hundreds of supportive spectators, and an electric finish line festival will ensure the 16th Anniversary of Jack’s Generic Triathlon is one to remember.

Jack’s Generic Tri was created 16 years ago with the participant in mind and is well-known as one of the more participant-friendly triathlons. Registration is still open for Jack’s Generic Triathlon. Volunteer positions are available as well. Packet pickup will take place at Mellow Johnny’s.

5 Tips for Training in the Heat

Summer is settling in, take precautions when training in the heat

Even with summer thunderstorms, temperatures in Central Texas consistently hit the mid-90s. Take a look at the heat index and it’s almost always triple digits. High temperatures won’t keep you from training, so you need to make some adjustments. Training in the heat does have some benefits, but being smart and altering your schedule/plan ensures your training regimen rolling right along. Incorporate these 5 tips for training in the heat and you’ll be prepared for your next race.

Hydrate more when training in the heat.

Hydrate more when training in the heat. Photo – Ed Sparks

HYDRATE!

This is the most obvious and most over-looked training in the heat tip. You know to hydrate in the summer months, but you don’t always do it. Sometimes you forget, perhaps you get sidetracked at work, often times you hydrate, just not enough. It’s recommended that we drink 64 ounces of water a day. In the summer months that should increase. And if your training in the heat, that amount should increase even more. Your body is losing fluids and you need to replace them. Don’t just drink water either, incorporate an electrolyte-enhanced drink, like nuun. Alternate between water and electrolytes. If you’re training in the heat you should aim for no less than 100 ounces of water/electrolytes every day. Drink up!

Train in the mornings/evenings

It’s no secret that the hottest part of the day is noon – 5:00 p.m. If you can avoid training during that timeframe do it! During the summer months, your training should occur earlier in the mornings or later in the evenings. Training early in the morning before work is your best bet. That’s the coolest part of the day. Your body will thank you for not having to work as hard keeping you cool. Not a morning person? Move your workouts to an evening time. 7:00 – 8:00 p.m. would be an ideal time for a workout. It’ll be warm, just not as hot as midday. Bonus – the sun’s angle is lower during the morning and the evenings. This means there will be more shadows on your run or ride.

Wear light-colored, breathable clothing

Darker colored clothing attracts and absorbs more of the sun’s heat. Cotton shirts and shorts absorb and carry sweat, weighing you down. Wear light-colored, breathable clothing when training in the heat. The lighter colors will reflect the sunlight and not absorb as much heat. Breathable clothing will wick sweat from your body and not weigh you down. This allows your body to stay cool and work more efficiently.

Run/bike on the trails

Hit the trails! The pavement’s temperature can soar as high as 140 degrees when you’re running or cycling. This heat can last well into the evening. Visit the trails for your next run or ride. The shade from the trees helps keep the temperatures down. There’s often little-to-no vehicle traffic. The ground is softer than the hot concrete. Often times there’s a creek or river nearby that you can jump in if needed. Check out our four favorite trails. Bonus – the trails will make you a better runner/cyclist!

Apply sunscreen

Swimming, biking, running. It doesn’t matter. Apply sunscreen! Even if you run in the shade or ride on the trail, apply sunscreen. If you’re swimming indoors you don’t need sunscreen, but if you’re outdoors, lather up! Look for sunscreen that’s sweat and water-proof. It’ll last long during your workout and ensure the sun’s ray don’t impact your skin, especially if you take off your shirt mid-run. If you’re racing for an extended period of time, apply sunscreen throughout. Training with a sunburn is not comfortable. Plus, the sunburn will warm your body and make it that much more difficult to keep your core cool.

These tips don’t apply to every scenario. There are various options you can choose from that variate from these tips. Modify them to your training plan, location, and life schedule. This advice will lead you to build a training plan that’s suitable for you. You’ll be ready for that next event. And think, when the temperatures start cooling off in the fall, you’ll be ahead of the training game!