Sunday, December 18, 2011


I wanted to take some time to hash out my short and long term goals as well as detail some of this month's training.

Short term: The upcoming season I have several realistic goals.
1. Qualify for World University Games, Top 8 finish at the games
2. Win Collegiate Nationals (April, Alabama)
3. Win U23 Nationals (Buffalo, NY in September)
4. Qualify for, and top 10 finish at U23 Worlds (October, New Zealand)
5. Qualify for Project 2016

Long Term
1. Make 2016 Olympic Team
2. Race the pro race at Kona
3. Be a top short course and long course triathlete in the world by 2017

With lofty goals, one needs to couple arduous training and strict discipline. This means what an athlete does all day matters- not just their workouts. Going to bed at 10 pm on a Friday night because you have a hard Saturday morning workout is often required. Such is the price to be a top athlete, but it is not a hard price if you keep your goals in mind.

The training I have been doing this month has been geared for building a huge base in the pool, in the saddle, and on the run. During The first three week in December, I have been fortunate enough to run with former XC runners at UD, and have consistently logged 60+ mpw. I have included some longer, steady runs such as 10 milers in 58 minutes just focusing on working hard, as well as a hill workout where I do 10 hill repeats up a .35 mile hill. This leaves me and my workout partner Andy Weaver running 7 miles up and down a 6% grade hill (tough mentally and physically). There are also the requisite 17- 20 mile long runs that help physically and mentally.  In the pool, I have been 23,000 plus yards each week and have thrown in some harder swims such as a 500 from a push mid practice in 5:43 and a sub 5:00 400 IM. I am logging 8-12 hours on the bike trainer per week in 5-6 sessions. I will be able to venture outside soon when my wrist is fully healed, but right now I feel as though I am in great shape from my CycleOps magnetic trainer. I have been seeing some threads on message boards about collegiate nationals in 17 weeks, and all I can say is that I am excited to race after my first winter of swimming/biking.

I will be doing a low key race in January, a 10 miler on a hilly course. I will follow up with an indoor 5k, then Clermont ITU sprint championships. I can start to begin feeling races coming up and it makes me ready to go.

I would also like to thank DogFish Head brewing company for giving me some training/racing gear for the 2012 season. They are a local brewery that is now internationally recognized. I am truly thankful for their support! Happy Holidays to all those out there, remember champions are made in the off season!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

College Living

Today's topic is somewhat tangential, but I thought I'd take a minute to describe the glamorous life of a pro triathlete living and training in college. First off when I say pro, I have earned my pro license, and intend on training full time post collegiality, but I am not referring to some 252 million dollar contract.. ahem should have become a baseball player... only kidding. Most pro triathletes are not making a huge living but we do pursue this sport because we love it and have immense passion for advancing it. I truly can say I love triathlon, and this passion is what wakes me up in the morning to get a swim/bike/run in before class even when the house is cold (more on that later).

Since I am in college (should be finishing up a year from now and graduate a semester early), I often fit training around a long day of classes and tests. My degree will be in Kinesiology and applied physiology with minors in Chemistry and Spanish with ultimate aspirations of going to med school.. that is after making the US Olympic team.  Taking Monday, December 5th for example, I had class from 9:05 until 11, then again from 2:30 until 3:30. During that day, I ran 10 miles in about 60 minutes before class, managed 4500 yards swimming at lunch, and then 2 hours on the bike trainer after my class at 3:30. Doesn't leave a lot of time for recovery, but all the running around makes an athlete mentally tough! Also, living the college lifestyle is sometimes funny. For instance, the heater in my house has been broken...for one week. The ambient temperature in the house hovers around a cozy 45 degrees and dropping. One positive thing about this is my roommates don't mind my indoor trainer rides because it warms the air a little bit! All of these little "blips" could hinder some athletes' training, but it adds character I think. Some other funny instances that surround my particular college town include a man being sighted running around with nothing but a flannel shirt on! I also live next to a fraternity that gives me a lot of odd looks when I'm biking on the trainer on our porch at 7:00 AM after they were partying all night and still awake! These are some funny instances and times that I would not change for the world. Also, the camaraderie of living with runners (and former teammates) is something I believe a lot of triathletes don't get a chance to do later in life.

Anyway, it is time to study some more for finals, I hope you enjoyed some of my life schedule. Happy Training!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

2012 Race Schedule

Here is my tentative schedule for racing tri's in 2012. Some of the races will depend on funding to travel to them, and I may have the opportunity to extend the season after October, but will not know until later. I am looking to finish my undergraduate studies next fall, so I may have to take some time to finish the requisite credits.
About the races, I am excited to race collegiate tri nationals and a REV3 race as I have heard great things about both races. I am looking to race as many ITU races as possible so I will travel to Clermont, Fl; Dallas, TX; Magog, Canada; Kewlona, Canada; and Buffalo, NY. Upon qualification, I will be racing World University Games in Taiwan, which will be my mid season big race in late June. Also pending qualification, I will race U23 world championships in New Zealand in October. I will also be doing 4-5 local races in the Piranha Race Series, where I will be looking to help out a local Tri team, Brick's Multisport, earn some points to earn the team title. the winner of the series is also awarded some money, which will help to fund some of my travel! I listed 5-6 of the races in the series (with * to denote that I won't be able to do all of them).

3/3/12 Claremont ITU Sprint
4/21/12 Collegiate Nationals Olympic
5/8/12 Rev3 Knoxville Olympic
5/20/12 Escape from DE* Olympic
6/3/12 Dallas Cont. Cup Olympic
6/9/12 Lavalove Triathlon Sprint
6/17/12 Washington DC 5150 Olympic
6/24/12 Philly Tri Olympic
6/30/12 World University Games Olympic
7/15/12 Magog Cont. Cup Olympic
7/27/12 Pittsburgh tri* Olympic
8/19/12 Lums Pond* sprint
8/19/12 Kewlona Olympic
9/15/12 Buffalo Cont. Cup Olympic
9/16/12 Marshman* Sprint
10/14/12 Cape henlopen* Sprint
10/22/12 U23 World Champs Olympic

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Off Season Training

I though I would share my thoughts on the "off season." In running and swimming (way back when), there was always at least two main seasons with a short break between each. I have always believed that building a strong base is paramount in order to race fast. Last winter, I may have jumped up a little too much over the winter as I was a little sluggish during outdoor track, but I firmly believe the body will eventually adapt to the training loads.
"Champions are made in the off season" is a quote that I believe is very true. I think some athletes can make huge jumps in ability during the off season. Some people believe the winter should be light mileage to prevent burn out (mentally), but I think if your goal is to race from March to September or October, you have to have a solid foundation to build upon. In this early phase of my training, I am logging mostly easy aerobic mileage in the pool, on the bike, and on the roads running. My last three weeks have all been about 20 hours of training, and have only fluctuated due to this being an extremely busy time of the year for college students! It is also important to keep up with stretching, hydration, and rolling out (with products such as Trigger Point Therapy) in the early season because it's easier to prevent injuries than heal one! I am looking to hold about 30 hours of training during the month of January, averaging about 200 miles/week on the bike, 30k yards swimming, and the normal 60-70 running. I am a big fan of long steady runs during the base phase such as my favorite 10 mile run with no warm up just going and working hard the whole time. Last winter, I averaged 5:33's during December for this run. I like huge base training because it makes me get to the starting line knowing I am ready for anything in the race (something I did not have last season of tris because I had no base of cycling or swimming to speak of!)

I have almost finalized my racing schedule for next year, and am excited to do some traveling to races such as Collegiate Nationals, REV 3 Knoxville, Clarmont ITU, San Francisco ITU, and hopefully World University Games in Taiwan, and U23 Worlds in New Zealand.