Give your muscles the TLC they need when you incorporate these 5 must-try yoga poses for triathletes into your training.
Adding yoga to your life offers many benefits such as increasing mobility and range of motion, preventing injuries, and relieving pain. Hopefully, you already have some kind of stretching routine included in your training. If you don’t, the offseason is the perfect time to try some new things! We’ve compiled a list of the 5 most beneficial yoga poses for triathletes to combat the wear and tear we put our bodies through during training.
1. Downward Facing Dog
Purpose: This is a common pose but is especially beneficial for a triathlete with any built-up tension in your calves and feet from running. Also great for cyclists with lower back from riding. Hold this pose to help build strength in your shoulders, arms, and chest.
How To: Start on your knees with your hands out in front of you, push your bottom up until you feel a stretch in your calves and the bottom of your feet. Straighten your legs if you can, but the main thing to remember in this pose is keeping your back flat as possible.
2. Crescent Lunge
Purpose: This pose utilizes all the muscles in your body but focuses on getting a stretch in the back of your legs, groin, and hip flexors, while building strength in the front of your legs. Practicing this pose will open your range of motion in your legs and hips.
How To: Start in a standing position, and go into a lunge until your front leg is bent at a 90-degree angle. Keep your core tight to remain balanced as you lift your arms above your head. During this motion, you will feel a stretch in your triceps and chest. Take deep breaths as you hold this position, switch to your other leg and repeat.
3. Pigeon Fold
Purpose: The Pigeon Fold is a great yoga pose for opening up your hips and getting a deep stretch in your hip flexors and glutes. Good for athletes who spend more time cycling to loosen and realign their hips after putting in hours on the bike.
How To: Start in a Downward Facing Dog, bend your right knee and sweep your leg down and place it on the mat beneath you. Lower yourself to a comfortable seated position with your left leg behind you as you feel the stretch in your quad and hamstring. Hold your chest high to focus the stretch in your legs.
4. Cross-Legged Twist
Purpose: This pose focuses on stretching your lats, shoulders, and neck. This will help reduce any pain you may have from constantly rotating your body side to side during your freestyle swim stroke. Holding this pose will lengthen and help mobility along your spine which is great for increasing your range of motion during your swim training.
How To: Begin on the floor with both legs out in front of you. Bring your knees to your chest and place the bottom of your feet on the ground. Slide your left foot on the ground under your right leg to rest your foot beside your right hip. Bring your right arm across your body and place it against the inside of your left knee. Push slightly to twist your body until you feel a stretch in your lats and shoulder.
5. Bridge Pose
Purpose: Offers relief from pain caused by the position you are in when training on your bike. Good stretch for your quads, chest, and abs while also strengthens your glutes and hamstrings. You will feel this pose strengthens your back muscles to reduce or prevent pain you may have from running and cycling.
How To: Lie flat on your back with your knees bent with feet on the floor shoulder-width apart. Place hands on either side of your body to help keep yourself balanced. Press your feet and arms firmly into the floor and push your hips up off the ground.
These yoga poses work muscles that are often neglected in the repetitive movements you do while preparing for a triathlon. Get the most out of your training when you add in these 5 yoga poses that are best for triathletes before or after your next workout!
Get the first look at this year’s JGT bibs designed especially with you in mind!
Get ready to get generic this August 25th and get ready to show off your personalized bib! Customizations are available until July 31st, so don’t wait any longer, and sign up today!
We can’t wait to meet you all on race morning at the start line! In the meantime, keep up the hard work during your JGT training!
Pursue your love of triathlons the right way!
It’s never a good idea to wait until a couple of weeks or days leading up to your next tri to get all your necessary gear together. We’ve created a checklist of the essential triathlon equipment you’ll need to be a pro triathlete in no time.
Simple enough, but one of the most important pieces of equipment you’ll need. You can’t complete a triathlon without a bike. From tri bikes and road bikes to mountain bikes, hybrid bikes, and cruisers, we’ve seen just about everything on the JGT course. Whatever kind of bike you have will be just fine for your next tri. Whether you’re currently in the market for one or are looking to improve your current ride, here are some suggestions for your perfect ride.
Pro tip: You can always rent bikes to test it out before you buy.
Arguably the most important piece of equipment you will need for a triathlon. A safe tri is a fun tri, so it’s important to make sure you have a helmet that protects you. The fit of your helmet is crucial in the case of an accident. It is also a good idea to make sure you test them out in person to ensure a correct fit before purchasing your helmet.
Running shoes are a must. It takes time to figure out what will make the run portion the most enjoyable and painless for you. Everyone is different and has different needs when it comes to a running shoe, so make sure you’re choosing the perfect pair of shoes. Hopefully, by now you already have a favorite pair or have a pair on the way, and are ready to take on the JGT run course. Pro tip: It’s a good idea to wear your running shoes to the race, to avoid forgetting them along with all your other essential tri gear.
Of course, you need goggles for the swim portion. Open water swimming tends to frighten people, so it will make you feel better to be able to see while completing the swim to see the buoys. Also, depending on the weather race day, choose goggles with the appropriate amount of tint to avoid hindering yourself during the swim portion.
Swim caps are great for eliminating drag and increasing your speed in the water. JGT provides our participants with a bright colored swim cap specific to your age group to keep the groups together and help with the time trial swim start. Per USAT rules, swim caps are required for safety purposes to be able to identify swimmers in the water.
Pro tip: Wear two swim caps on race day with your goggles in between the two. It will prevent any sort of slipping your goggles may encounter.
Swimsuit or Tri Suit
A standard swimsuit can come in a one-piece or two-piece. You will need to come prepared with a pair of cycling shorts after you complete the swim if you opt for the swimsuit. Then there is a tri suit. A tri suit can also be in one or two pieces, but the bottoms resemble cycling shorts. The key difference here from a wetsuit is the pad included for cycling is not nearly as thick. Find what you’re most comfortable in to be ready for your next triathlon. Lastly, if you plan on doing your training in a pool, the chlorine can damage your suit. It’s always a good idea to have one you train in, and one designated for race day.
We advise shopping around before you make your purchase regarding these different pieces of essential triathlon equipment. Everyone has their preferences, so take some time to guarantee you get the equipment best for you and your body.
Our guide to a clean bike will have your ride look good as new
Everybody knows that when you go for a ride, your bike is bound to get dirty. Whether it’s grease from your indoor trainer or mud and dirt from your ride on the trails, we know how hard it can be to keep your set of wheels clean with all the craziness of training season. Prolong the life of your bike by giving it the TLC it needs with our 7-step guide to a clean bike. Pro tip: download the PDF below to print out our guide to a clean bike!
- Put a little degreaser on the chain. Not too much, a little goes a long way. Let it sit on the chain for about a minute or two.
- Give the chain a light scrubbing and rinse it off with the hose/sprayer.
- Prepare the Simple Green solution. We recommend a 3:1 ratio of water to Simple Green.
- Take your big brush along with the solution and wash all the major components of the bike (i.e. frame, fork, wheels, cranks, and derailleurs). Save your smaller brushes for tighter areas. To avoid missing any spots, start at the back and make your way to the front of the bike.
- Spray your bike down with water completely. Wash your tires while you’re at it. It will give you a chance to inspect for any damages your tires may have.
- Let it dry. Either air-dry outside or hand-dry it with a towel.
- Once completely dry, you can then lube the chain so it’s ready to go on your next ride.
Go the extra mile and wash the bar tape, saddle, and tires. These parts tend to get forgotten and they can get pretty gross if they stay dirty.
Consistency is key. Using our guide to a clean bike will ultimately improve the way your bike handles, as well as extending the life of your bike. Remember: happy bike = happy life.
By: James Balentine, owner of City Limit Cycles, an Austin, Texas-based mobile bicycle repair company that comes to you. Balentine began working with bikes in 1990 when he was 12. He began racing mountain bikes in 1991 and BMX in 1992, winning 12 national championships before turning pro in 1999. He has worked with USA Triathlon as a mechanic for Team USA since 2004. Since 2013, Balentine has worked with the US Paratriathlon team and is their sole mechanic.
What is aqua running?
Aqua running is a deep water form of running. Running in water is great for those who are looking to up their cardiovascular capacity without wear and tear on their muscles from running on pavement.
Aqua running is sometimes associated with injury but it is also a great addition to any training routine. It is also a great way to escape the heat during the summer months.
- a pool deep enough so your feet don’t touch the bottom
- An aqua running flotation belt.
- Waterproof watch if the pool doesn’t have a clock
- water weights (optional)
How to get started
Strap the belt around your waist. You want to make sure the belt stays around your waist and does not ride up too high your ribcage. Once you have your belt on and are in the pool simply get into the running position as you would on land.
Aquajogging is much slower so it is best to base your workouts on time, hence the waterproof watch.
To keep from getting bored run laps up and down the lane. But if you are limited on space you can stay in one spot or jog in small circles. You can increase the difficulty of the workout by increasing your cadence.
Some advice from experience
Stay conscious of your form, make sure your arms don’t turn into a doggy paddle.
Don’t lean forward. you need to keep your body as upright as possible. So remember to check in on yourself.
Bring your knees up higher than you would on land.
Don’t overdo it on your first session. 20 – 30 minutes is a good Aqua jogging session to start out with.
Remember, this is not just treading water.
Aqua running is as hard as you want to make it. If you find yourself slacking, do interval workouts.
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.
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!
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!
Remember: there’s no “I” in relay team
Triathlon is that much more fun when you divide and conquer! Recruit friends, family, or co-workers and create your relay team for Jack’s Generic Triathlon. The 16th annual JGT will take place on Sunday, August 26th, at Walter E. Long Metropolitan Park. Relay teams can consist of two or three individuals. If your team has two members, one person will take two legs and the second person will take the third leg. This can be accomplished in any combination. Check out the top five reasons to build a relay team at this year’s Jack’s Generic Triathlon.
Try something new
Maybe you know about triathlon, maybe you’re unfamiliar. Perhaps you’ve cheered and supported friends at their triathlons, but you’ve never participated in one. Creating a relay team is the best way to get introduced to the sport! Attempting something new can be a little overwhelming at times. Building a team of two or three will help take some of the pressure off. Train with your team, experience the highs and the lows, and get a taste of your new sport.
Have three times the fun
Of course you can always double your pleasure. But why do that when you can triple the fun?! That’s right, get two friends or co-workers and create your relay team. Next, come up with a sweet team name. While you’re training, you can have team tops made and begin planning what you’ll wear on race day. Will it be matching outfits or a hilarious swim-bike-run-friendly costume? So many choices!
Injuries happen. We all know that. But what may prevent you from running might not stop you from cycling or swimming. As long as you feel comfortable and aren’t in pain when training, creating a relay team for JGT is a fantastic way to stay active while continuing to strengthen your muscles. You never know, cross-training might just help speed up your recovery!
Experience something memorable
Get the old high school/college crew together. Build a family relay team that spans three generations. Create an all-sibling team. Represent your employer and become the talk of the office. Raise some serious dough for your favorite nonprofit. Whatever direction you go, make this something you won’t soon forget. Participate with loved ones and/or fundraise for an organization that’s close to your heart and your JGT experience will be stored in your long-term memory bank.
You have a need for speed
You’re like Ricky Bobby: you just want to go fast. Triathlon is a trying sport, pushing your body’s limits. Training coupled with proper hydration and nutrition help keep your body going. But by the time the run starts your energy levels are decreasing, slowing you down. Try pushing the limits in another way, create a super team. Find someone who swims like a fish in the water. Add a member who gets speeding tickets on their bike for going too fast. Pick a runner whose feet seem to never touch the ground because of their speed. Assemble this super team and show up on race day ready to set land records (just watch out for the speed traps)!
Whatever your reasoning, there are two things left to do: build your team and register!
What is a Basno Badge?
Jack’s Generic Tri uses Basno, a badge management system, to distribute and host digital badges. Collect as many as you can to track your history of accomplishments. It’s like a trophy cabinet without having to dust!
Digital badges are awarded to participants who successfully complete Jack’s Generic Tri or other High Five Events’ events. In addition, if you register early enough, you’ll also receive an “In Training” badge. Make sure you let your friends and loved ones know about your upcoming goal.
How To Claim Your Badges?
To claim your in training badge you can use the link below. After the Tri, check your inbox to claim your JGT Finisher badge. It’s simple and free. Share your journey and accomplishments by sharing your badges on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.
This 2018 triathlon season you can collect up to 10 badges!
Rookie Tri In Training, Volunteer, Finisher
Jack’s Generic Tri In Training, Volunteer, Finisher
Kerrville Tri In Training, Volunteer, Finisher
Texas Tri Series Finisher
We will also recognize those who complete eight or more with a special badge.
2018 Rookie Tri Finisher Badge
Make sure a brick is in your triathlon training plans
Integrating a brick workout into your training prepares you for racing by combining two aspects of triathlon into a single, continuous workout. The two most common examples are a swim to bike and a bike to run.
The term brick has a few meanings.
1) It is foundational to triathlon training just like a brick is foundational to a structure.
2) Another is that after a bike/run workout your legs feel as heavy as bricks.
Setting Up for a Brick Workout
There are several ways to integrate a brick workout into your plan, however, set up is always key. The reason for this is to minimize transition time between disciplines in the same manner as a race. At T3Multisports, we utilize a transition bike rack that allows athletes to set their transition area up in the same fashion as they would on race day.
We build a transition rack similar to what you see at races. We place this near our open water swim practice area or in a side parking lot near a pool. The athletes swim the prescribed distance in their race suit. They then run to the transition area (complete with bike mount line) and transition onto the bike.
The duration and intensity of both the swim and bike will depend on where you are in your training or what you are targeting as an area of improvement. If you don’t have the luxury of a rack, setting your bike up poolside (check with the lifeguards first) or securing it a public bike rack might be an option. Brick training along with the transition practice will help you transition to the next level!
By: Andrew Sidwell
Andrew Sidwell is the Adult and High-Performance Coach at T3Multisports. T3Multisport is Round Rock’s premier year-round, group triathlon training program for adults. It doesn’t matter if you are new to the sport or an experienced veteran; we will help you achieve your goals and Transition You to the Next Level.
If you would like to be a guest blogger please contact us at email@example.com.