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AG Athlete Spotlight - MIKE HARDY - IRONMAN TEXAS

Add another one to the list of incredible Team Every Man Jack athletes racing in Texas this weekend. Mike Hardy has been looking forward to this one for a while. 

 

Ironman Texas this weekend! Are you in town already? : I live in Austin, Texas so I'm just driving over on Wednesday, staying with family at their house, very casual setup.

What other races have you done this season to build up to this one? How did they turn out? : I did Puerto Rico 70.3, where my rear shifter broke and I was stuck in a low gear, my brakes rubbed, and I dropped a chain. Which is pretty awesome since I came to triathlon as a big bad cat 1 cyclist. A fail on so many levels I was laughing at myself on course. We all have those days. Good wake up call though to get the basics (prep, maintenance, etc) right again. Led to some burnt hip muscles which led to IT band irritation on the run, so that wasn't good. But at least I didn't get shot! Two competitors did. Otherwise I loved it and I actually mean that. Good host hotel for my 4 year old. 

I did Galveston 70.3 a few weeks ago and learned if I hydrate too much and don't warm up I can get swimming-induced pulmonary edema. So my lungs had fluid in them after the first few minutes of the swim and I got pretty short of breath. After I backed off it stopped getting worse and I was able to swim "ok", bike 2:12 on nearly no power (thank you Felt and Enve! srsly) since I was still missing my lungs, and I did the run as a run/walk without IT irritation which was awesome since I'd just finished rehabbing the IT band. So the whole thing sounds kind of horrible from one perspective, but I was actually encouraged - I went pretty quick at IM output instead of half-IM output and my knee is good again. Plus I got to see Every Man Jack teammate Paul Duncan podium and got a selfie with him which was a life goal of mine.

Why did you choose IMTX? How does this race play into your goals for the rest of the year? : I retired really young which is another way of saying I'm notoriously frugal. I chose IMTX because I live nearby for nearly free travel and have family there with lodging that's only going to cost a couple nice bottles of wine, so as far as Ironman goes it's a nearly free race. I'll admit racing Kona is a dream of mine, and it's the regional champs. Since I'm in the Aging Warrior brackets there will be a huge 11 or so Kona slots up for grabs for me. Crappy swimmer but it's freshwater and a continuous start. Fast bike course for a cyclist. And the heat index will only be 93F, why not? This is the only real A race I have this year though I've qualified for 70.3 WC in Austria. If I go really well Kona's a possibility but who knows? And it's not like I'm going to win either of those, so this is it really - which is another way of saying if you see me walking on the run course and it's not an aid station I now expect you to yell at me for wasting my entire year

Tell us a little about your race build up! How has your training been? Do you feel ready to roll?: My training has been great except for the part where I couldn't run much for nearly a month so my long run is only up to 11 miles as of one week to race. I'll just pretend I was tapering the whole time and call it good. Swimming is laughable for me but I swear I focused on it and I've gotten a lot better. I think I've got my cycling issues solved, which means I'll get a flat now or something. For all the things that are in my control I think I'm pretty set, and the rest of the stuff I just have to work with what I've got.

Have you ridden the course? Tell us about it if so. How do you feel about the heat?: I stopped in The Woodlands on the way to Galveston 70.3 and went out to pre-ride it. I made it out to the left turn after the forest around mile 45(?) and then despite having GPS on my bike computer went right and went a long ways before I realized it, because I'm awesome. So I didn't do the whole loop but did that outbound stretch. I hear the pavement's rougher on the far North section, but the whole first part I did was really fantastic. Just enough rollers to stand every now and again, and who doesn't love riding through a forest? The heat index is the real deal though. Austin is only a couple degrees cooler and I train during the day so it's my day to day. I've discovered I need almost 60oz/hour to keep the same weight on long rides which is kind of mind-boggling but there it is. Sweat is so ridiculous that glasses are useless unless you have windshield wipers. Should be fun to spectate the run course - could be carnage.

What's next after this? : After this it's most likely making amends to my wife for leaving my 4 year old completely in her hands for 6 days since I'm doing this race solo. Then Austria, and then who knows?

PRO Athlete Spotlight - Chad Holderbaum - IRONMAN TEXAS

Chad is a professional triathlete and coach for Project 942 Racing Team. Check out what he has to say about the race this weekend. 

Ironman Texas this weekend! Are you in town already? : I've been training in Austin since mid April and will drive over to The Woodlands on Tuesday pre-race.

What other races have you done this season to build up to this one? How did they turn out? : Unfortunately I've had a bad run of injuries so far including a bike crash on April 23rd that has kept me sidelined.

Why did you choose IMTX? How does this race play into your goals for the rest of the year? : It's a great early season race with awesome competition and it gives me a chance to see how I'm stacking up in the field. With the crash, I'm not sure if the run is there so this will probably turn into a build race for the rest of the year with my targets on August through September racing.

Tell us a little about your race build up! How has your training been? Do you feel ready to roll?: With the crash and the inability to get in a good run block, I've been logging a lot of miles on the bike and in the pool so feel ready for at least 2/3rds of the race.

Have you ridden the course? Tell us about it if so. How do you feel about the heat?: Yeah absolutely! I came down to preview the course and support a great fundraiser for fellow pro triathlete Amy Marsh. It's a flat and fast course and hopefully living in Austin the past 5-6 weeks, the heat will not be a problem for me.

What's next after this? : Well the goal was to focus on Challenge Family events but if you stay up on triathlon news, you'll know how that fell through so I'm sort of scrambling to put my race schedule back together for the rest of the year. I'm leaning towards a couple June/July 70.3s and a couple late season fulls like Chattanooga and/or Arizona. 

PRO Athlete Spotlight - Matt Curbeau - Ironman Texas

Matt is an East Coast living pro triathlete. In addition to trying to make his presence know as a pro triathlete, he is also a full time coach for QT2 Systems. Matt is super pumped about racing in Texas, and going long this coming weekend. 
 



Ironman Texas this weekend! Are you in town already? : Yup, I have been living large in Texas since the end of April. Even had some crawfish last weekend!

What other races have you done this season to build up to this one? How did they turn out? : The year began with the California 70.3 out in Oceanside, CA and then the Texas 70.3 in Galveston a couple weeks back. Both races went really smoothly. The time I have spent in the pool over the past few years is starting to show through in my race times and really allowing for me to be in the game heading out on the bike legs. I'm really looking forward to getting down to business on Saturday and truly showing off all the hard work I've put in, not only over the last few months but the last few years. It's time to make things happen.

Why did you choose IMTX? How does this race play into your goals for the rest of the year? : As the first big North American Ironman it was a no brainer. I wrapped up 2014 in Chattanooga way back in September so I've had a pretty long time to take my offseason and then resume training for my assault on 2015. After IMTX I will most likely take a bit of time to recover, celebrate my birthday and then resume the second half of my 2015 season which will most likely end with another late season Ironman.

Tell us a little about your race build up! How has your training been? Do you feel ready to roll?: The build has really been as smooth as it could be. Living in Boston the weather is less than ideal during the winter months. Luckily my girlfriend and I were able to ditch the snowdrifts and head down to Clermont, Florida for about a month of training with our fellow QT2 Pro Athletes. After camp broke at the beginning of March we survived about 11 days up North before we ditched the cold weather for the sunny skies of San Diego. We were able to put in a couple solid weeks of training and end it with the race at Oceanside. Since the west coast trip, we polished up our big weeks of training in Boston, where thankfully Spring decided to show up. Then finally we headed to Texas for the Texas 70.3 and have been fortunate enough to stay down here since that race and get some acclimation in Texas over the last few weeks before the big day on May 16th.

Have you ridden the course? Tell us about it if so. How do you feel about the heat?: I've ridden just about the whole course save for the parts in and around the Woodlands. It looks like the first half is going to be pretty quick based on the typical wind pattern lending to a tailwind and the roads being nice and smooth (think people rolling 25-26mph pretty easily). The back half appears to turn into some chip seal, and that coupled with some headwind will slow things down a bit. Heat wise, I can't say I'm not hoping for a hot, humid and nasty day. I've trained in some really nasty conditions over the last week and I figure it can only help me deal with whatever is thrown at us on Saturday. I raced here last year when the conditions were called "mild and ideal" by the locals so I think its only fair I see how it is under "normal" May conditions.

What's next after this? : Pizza, a few Beers, Red Sox games, my 29th birthday, rest and then eventually falling in love with my road bike and doing some fun riding as I get back to obsessively exercising.

Find out more about Matt at www.turbeaucurbeau.com

AG Athlete Spotlight - Nancy Dickinson - IRONMAN Texas

Nancy Dickinson is a Las Vegas area local (Boulder City) getting ready to toe the line at IRONMAN Texas. Being a mother, and having a full time job don't stop her from achieving great things in this sport. Check out what she has to say about this weekends race. 

Name: Nancy Dickinson

Ironman Texas this weekend! Are you in town already? : Not yet! 

What other races have you done this season to build up to this one? How did they turn out? : RAGE Triathlon (Las Vegas) half. Turned out beautifully with the fastest swim I've ever done and surprising strong bike. Though unlike TEXAS, it caters to my strengths.

Why did you choose IMTX? How does this race play into your goals for the rest of the year? : Pretty intense reasons. My uncle with whom I was very close, passed away a year ago. He lived in woodlands and always asked me to go race there. I'd politely reply that Id love for him to come watch me 'race someplace cool like South Africa'. This race is for him....
The remainder of the season is hard for me to consider. Single parenting and IRONMAN training gets rough. But I must say that it's been wonderful going long early in season to dodge heat.

Tell us a little about your race build up! How has your training been? Do you feel ready to roll?: Im a less is more gal. And I don't always have much choice given my schedule. But nevertheless I feel really good. No nagging injuries and strong in each discipline.

Have you ridden the course? Tell us about it if so. How do you feel about the heat?: I have not ridden the course, no. I have a good history in the heat/humidity, but it's NOT taken lightly. This will be a serious test for everyone in terms of managing temps on top of race execution.

What's next after this? : Local stuff. Maybe age group national championships. Ironman again next year. 

IRONMAN TEXAS PRO Athlete Spotlight - 2012 World Champion, Leanda Cave

To add to the amazing line of of athletes headed to Ironman Texas this weekend, we got a chance to ask Leanda Cave some questions. For those who don't know her, she holds onto a long list of accomplishments in her triathlon career to include winning the 2012 World Championships in Kona. More recently she took the overall at Las Olas and Cannes International. She will be one of the top females to watch out for at IMTX. Check out what she has to say about this weekend. 
 


Hey Leanda! Are you in town already for the race? : Not yet! 

What other races have you done this season to build up to this one? How did they turn out? Nothing that is specific to prepare for this race. Just fitness testers like Cannes International - 1st, Las Olas International - 1st and Challenge Dubai - 8th. I'd say they show all things are moving in the right direction.

Why did you choose IMTX? How does this race play into your goals for the rest of the year?  I like big races because I like to race. The smaller ones sometimes feel like you are out there on your own racing the clock. That may as well be a training day, which is never as much fun as racing. IM Texas, being the US Ironman Champs, will attract some of the best athletes and a good result there will be a true testament to how I am responding to my training and it will enable me to make any adjustments early enough to prepare well for Kona.

Tell us a little about your race build up! How has your training been? Do you feel ready to roll?: It'd been a gradual ramp up from the off season which I took in December. I feel I am in a good place. The fact that I have been based out of Miami will certainly play in my favor if it is a hot day at the office......so I am kind of hoping for that!

Have you ridden the course? Tell us about it if so. How do you feel about the heat?: Nope. I'm going in blind so to speak. I will get to drive over some sections before the race, but with modern technology like Google Earth, I don't expect there to be any surprises.

What's next after this? : A lot of pool time that does not involve doing laps! I see a floating cooler and some blow up mattresses!

Find out more about Leanda at www.leandacave.com 

IRONMAN TEXAS AG Athlete Spotlight - Tim Perkin


Tim Perkin is another Team Every Man Jack Member getting ready to tackle his first triathlon of the year. After scoring a spot to the big island last year, he is hoping to tackle this one again with the same strength. 



Ironman Texas this weekend! Are you in town already? : Sort of - in San Antonio right now staying with a friend to acclimate.

What other races have you done this season to build up to this one? How did they turn out? : I've done a few running races, but this will be número uno in terms of triathlon. I like to focus 100% on this build and preparation with no distractions.

Why did you choose IMTX? How does this race play into your goals for the rest of the year? : I did the race last year and qualified for Kona. Everything about the race was great and I decided to go for it again this year. Also my best friend wanted to do it for his first so there were lots of reasons.

Tell us a little about your race build up! How has your training been? Do you feel ready to roll?: Training of late has been really good. I dealt with some sickness early on at the start back in February, which delayed things a bit, but I've been able to put in some really good work the past 2 months and feel ready to roll.

Have you ridden the course? Tell us about it if so. How do you feel about the heat?: Having done this course already I really enjoyed the whole thing. The swim was great ending in the canal, the one loop rolling bike is FAST, and the 3 loop run is super spectator friendly. My last 2 races have been in heat and I feel like I've figured out the preparation for it, so I enjoy and look forward to it!

What's next after this? : Eagleman 70.3 is next, where I'll race alongside my girlfriend for the first time. After that a little break and then Olympic Age Group Nationals and Worlds.
 

IRONMAN TEXAS AG Athlete Spotlight - Jackson Dovey

Jackson is an elite Age Group athlete that races for Team Every Man Jack. Check out what he has to say about this years race, and why he is racing! 
 


Ironman Texas this weekend! Are you in town already? : No, I actually dont get in until Thursday afternoon so there will be no time to waste. It will be straight from the airport to check-in.

What other races have you done this season to build up to this one? How did they turn out? : So far I have only done Oceanside 70.3 and the results were a mixed bag for sure. I had a great Swim/Bike and came out of T2 in 2nd in my AG only to pull my calf a couple hundred yards into the run. I had been nursing it for a couple weeks before the race and always knew it was going to be a stretch to have a complete race.

Why did you choose IMTX? How does this race play into your goals for the rest of the year? : I have always wanted to do IMTX but have been focusing on 70.3's for the last 3 years. This will mark my first IM since 2012 and a welcome back to full distance racing. Aside from being a great race and the North American Championships the timing of the race played a big factor. It is early enough in the year to be able recover and race a 2nd IM in the same year and not suffer the effects of Ironman hangover. I will fall back into 70.3's for the rest of the summer and then hopefully head into another build near the end of summer.

Tell us a little about your race build up! How has your training been? Do you feel ready to roll?: My race build for IMTX was a bit out of the ordinary and required some creativity by my coach. Coming out of Oceanside unable to run, we spent a lot of time on the bike and in the water. There were many long pool running and elliptical sessions to try and simulate running but it wasn't until a couple weeks ago that I was actually able to start running on the road. Even with that said, the build up to this point has been really really good. I feel like I have done everything in my power to put myself in a position to have a good race and everything is stating to click at just the right time.

Have you ridden the course? Tell us about it if so. How do you feel about the heat?: I have not ridden the course, though I have looked at the maps and elevations very closely. From what I am told and what I can see this course is right up my alley. I tend to do better on a "power" course and this is a prime example of a "power" course. As far as the heat, I feel I can manage it pretty well. I am not the slightest of build but I have a plan for staying cool and making sure I am hydrated coming off the bike to set up a good run.

What's next after this? : After this.......I guess Disneyland!!! In all seriousness, I will take a good week to recover both my body and mind and then start the prep for Vineman in July. We have a family vacation in early June which will be a blast and there are still 4 weddings on the calendar this summer so we have our hands full. It will definitely be a little culture shock when the training volume goes way down and I have all this extra time in my day.

What makes this race different than any other one this year?
IMTX is my "A" race for the year so there is a little added pressure that comes with that but I am most excited to be racing in support of CAF. My team, Team Every Man Jack, is putting together rides around the country this weekend to raise money and awareness for CAF and there is a group of 8 that will be racing IMTX as our charity ride. Our team goal is to raise $25k across the 60+ members and I am just really honored to be a part of it. Click HERE to learn more about the charity ride.

 click the image to find out more 

click the image to find out more 


Anything Else readers should know about?
YES! Just want to shout out to Team Every Man Jack, not only the fastest group of guys I have ever raced with but the best smelling one as well. Being on such a fast team motivates me every day to go out push myself. Our success would not be possible with out our fearless leader Ritch Viola and an amazing group of sponsors to include

@everymanjackbrand @rudyprojectna @feltbicycles @guenergylabs @envecomposites @rokasports @louisgarneau @greenlayersports @lululemonmen @purplepatchfitness @patxispizza @bocogear @ntrecovery @themarcpro.

These guys keep us in the latest and greatest gear on the market and take the guess work out of everything we do. All this would not be possible with out an unbelievable support system at home and I can't thank my wife @jacklilly and family for the support as I prepare to tackle IMTX. 


 

IRONMAN TEXAS AG Athlete Spotlight - Christy Sanantonio

Christy is an Elite AG athlete based out of Texas. She races in the 30-34 AG. Last year she scored a ticket to the big Island after nailing down an stellar race, this year she hopes to do the same! 

Ironman Texas this weekend! Are you in town already?  Yes - I live in Houston.

What other races have you done this season to build up to this one? How did they turn out? NOLA 70.3 in April was my build up to IMTX this year. I chose not to go to the well during the run so I could nail my biggest week of training the next week after the race.

Why did you choose IMTX? How does this race play into your goals for the rest of the year? Ironman Texas is my hometown race and I was fortunate enough to KQ last year. The crowd support is amazing and is unlike any other race I've competed in (except for Kona!). So many familiar faces cheering for hours on end, many of them in costume. It's like Mardi Gras almost but probably is the worst parade ever ;)

Tell us a little about your race build up! How has your training been? Do you feel ready to roll?: My race build up has been good and I am very excited to race IMTX for a second year in a row. Here in Houston, we have had very nice weather since the beginning of the year for the most part so conditions have been almost ideal to train in. The heat and humidity has just recently arrived over the past few weeks. So much for spring!

Have you ridden the course? Tell us about it if so. How do you feel about the heat?: Yes, the IMTX bike course is quite enjoyable and is one of my favorite parts of the race. The rolling "hills" once you get to Anderson are fun and the scenery out in the country is relaxing. I love training and racing in the heat. Bring it ON!

What's next after this? Buffalo Springs Lake Triathlon 70.3 in Lubbock at the end of June. I believe it is one of the toughest HIM's on the US circuit.

What songs or mantras do you have in your head while on the bike or the run?
I try and keep my mind as calm and relaxed as possible and focus on nutrition and hydration. For some reason at IMTX last year, Jay-Z's "On To The Next One" played over and over in my head for hours on end while on the bike. It was the soundtrack of my IMTX!

Any rituals for the finish line?
A big smile has always been my wardrobe for race finishes, but this year I will wear the jersey I wore across the finish line in Kona: J.J. Watt #99. When in Texas - go big or go home! Go TEXANS!

2014 Ironman Texas Champion, Kelly Williamson gives thoughts on defending her title this weekend

 

Kelly Williamson has had many great highlights in her professional triathlon career. One of which was was taking the title home last year at Ironman Texas, finishing the race with a blazing fast run split (2hrs 54minutes). She is back for more and excited to defend her title. 

Ironman Texas this weekend! Are you in town already? No, I'm at home in Austin until Wednesday! That is the beauty of a race 3 hours away. I get to sleep in my own bed most of race week! But I'm looking forward to getting there and fully get into race 'mode'.

What other races have you done this season to build up to this one? How did they turn out? I've had a pretty quiet early part of the year, with Challenge Philippines in February and Texas 70.3 in April. They were not bad, 2nd and 4th. But since I raced Ironman Cozumel late in 2014, I wanted to ease into this season, so the lighter race schedule has allowed me the ability to do this; take a good rest in December, ease back early months and build towards May.

Why did you choose IMTX? How does this race play into your goals for the rest of the year?  I just love this event. I've done it in 2011 and 2014, and living in Austin, it feels like a hometown race. I'm pretty used to the conditions, I know the course and I just get excited to head back; the event has great energy. Also when we talk of us pros aiming to make a living at the sport, it would be silly to pass up a huge event such as this one only 3 hrs away! As for bigger goals, I am honestly focusing on this at the moment. Last year things changed post Texas so realizing that, I am going to take it one race (or at least one Ironman) at a time.

Tell us a little about your race build up! How has your training been? Do you feel ready to roll? Ah the favorite question. :) It has been good. I am really glad I raced Galveston 3 weeks ago, because my lower legs were a bit beat up and I needed a vast part of that week to recover. But it left me just enough time to put in a short few solid days for Texas. I'd say it has gone according to plan, and I feel strong; but ya know, I felt great the week of Kona last year and we all saw how that turned out for me...(or maybe you didn't because i was so far back)...! I'm healthy and excited and I think those are two things to be grateful for.

Have you ridden the course? Tell us about it if so. How do you feel about the heat?: I have, both racing and on short training blocks in The Woodlands. It's actually a really pretty course. I love the open Texas roads as they remind me much of riding here in the Austin hill country. As for the heat, I'm a fan of it; but I haven't always been. About 10 years ago living in CO, I hated it and thought I couldn't race well in it; but living in Texas, I have really taken to it and it seems while it makes it tougher for everyone and it may not be 'pleasant', I'm just very used to it and my body functions better in warm than it does cold.

What's next after this? : I'm going to Disneyworld! Actually, not Disney... but I am going to Cancun, Mexico. Short trip with my mom and sister. Nothing better post Ironman than getting away and lounging poolside for days one end. :) Race-wise, as I said, not entirely sure but I'm anxious to plan out the coming months after Texas.

Anything else you would like to tell us? I'd just like to add that I am really excited to see such an awesome field assembled here in Texas. The women's race is incredibly deep and talented, and it is an honor to get to come back as defending champion, especially with Memorial Hermann Ironman Sports Medicine Institute as both the race title and my own title sponsor. This event has gained a great reputation as a legit, solid, tough, and very well-run race, and I'm proud to be a part of it, and humbled to have won it in 2014. That said, every year is different and I know it'll be an incredibly tough one to back up. But I am excited to have the opportunity and very glad that this is the North American Championships.

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IRONMAN TEXAS - Pre Race Questions with Angela Duncan Naeth

For those that didn't know, Angela has won more IRONMAN 70.3 races than we can count. As of recently, she is also an IRONMAN champion (IRONMAN Chattanooga). She is now on her road to the World Championships in Kona, but standing in her way is the North American Pro Championships in the Woodlands (Texas). A good showing will likely give her enough points to get a spot on the big island for the 1st time in her career, a win in Texas will guarantee that spot! 
 

Here are some of her thoughts on the race! 

Ironman Texas this weekend! Are you in town already?  Yes! I've been in town since April 27th! Loving it!

What other races have you done this season to build up to this one? How did they turn out?
I started the season in early March and have done three 70.3 races leading up to IMTX (70.3 Monterrey, 70.3 California and 70.3 Galveston). Disregarding a few mishaps (ill-conditions in Mexico and an unfortunate penalty in California), all three of these races were great to jump into with the training build for this race. Galveston is just a short drive from The Woodlands and so it was an easy race to head to with the plan of being in Texas three weeks prior to the Ironman.

Why did you choose IMTX? How does this race play into your goals for the rest of the year?
I chose IMTX for a number of reasons! 
1) Coach said so! - Listening to him (Jesse Kropelnicki) is always #1 priority these days.
2) Climate - I love heat and humidity. 2 big easy ones in Texas! 
3) North American Championships - IMTX has big points and a deep field of competitors. Best opportunity to race! 
4) Community - although I knew nothing about the city prior to now, OutRival Racing and QT2 have a solid crew of athletes in the area. Having a group of supportive people makes all the difference on race day! 
5) Texas! - I've only been to a few places in Texas and it's a big state to explore!


Overall IMTX is a solid points race for the professional circuit and great race toward qualifying for the IM World Championships.

Tell us a little about your race build up! How has your training been? Do you feel ready to roll? Training has never been better. This will be my 4th Ironman and I'm very, VERY eager to see how fast I can go! I'm twiddling my thumbs and the countdown is on.

Have you ridden the course? Tell us about it if so. How do you feel about the heat?
I've seen most of the course now and it's country roads. Coming from Vegas where we can get some good rollers, the roads here are quite flat. It'll be fast. If I had my say on race day conditions, I'd prefer hot hot hot with winds! So I'm feeling happy things are looking to be heating up for race day.

What's next after this? After this I'm headed to Redbull HQ for a Performance Camp to learn more on how I can improve as an athlete. We have a full week of testing and for me, a whole lot of eating and hanging out with the Redbull crew! From there I'll head back to Las Vegas and get back into the swing of things after some down time. We'll see what Coach has in store and create a plan for the remainder of the season.

Will you be using Redbull at IMTX? 
Most definitely! It's awesome that Redbull is now on course at all Ironman events! Now I don't have to remember to pack a few cans or have them in special needs. Everyone gets one at race packet pickup and there are a few designated Redbull handouts on the bike and run. For me, I use it pre-race (15-20 minutes before), half way on the bike I take a watered down version and on the run, I'll have it midway if I need the boost. The flavor is a treat and good change of pace from the other forms of liquid on course. Plus the fizz settles the stomach...  

What's your bike setup like? 
I'm one lucky gal in this area with awesome sponsors including: Scott Bikes, Shimano, Pro and Xlab. I ride a Scott Plasma5 with Dura-ace Di2 components and Shimano Pro c50 front and disc wheel. I use Xlab Gorilla and Torpedo bottle cages. For Texas, I'll be using a 54 big chain ring and an 11-25 on the back! 

What about your race kit? Any suggestions to keeping cool? My kit is custom from Pearl Izumi and it's damn near perfect for fit and comfort! I know they now make inline kits similar to what I'll be wearing and I couldn't ask for a better design. No chaffing is key on race day! I have to say my chamois is light so it's no diaper come run time, ha!  

As far as keeping cool, Pearl Izumi has some great materials they use and my kits design allows for great movement and ability to throw down some ice on my chest and shorts. Keeping your inner core cool is key! 

Any tips for those wanting to do an Ironman who hasn't? 
I would highly recommend getting a coach, The time and effort it takes to do an Ironman is huge and having the right guy or gal that can get you to your best on race day is key. Especially if you have a family and other commitments as it's a juggling act to reduce stress, train right and recover well. 

 

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Any shout outs? How can we follow you?
BIG shout out to my husband! He's a cutie if I say so myself. Plus, he asked me these questions. :-)

A big thanks to my home-stay here in The Woodlands, Shannon and David Pope and also a big thanks to my home-stay in Galvlston Hud and Sandra Hopkins! These two families have made my stay in Texas just awesome. Can't thank them enough! 

To the OutrivalRacing Team here in the Woodlands, who is now partnered with QT2 Systems. Thanks so much for the help these past couple of weeks and support! It's been fun! 

And of course to my sponsors and support team! Stoked to be part of the team and ready to roll this weekend! You can check them all out here: 
http://angelanaeth.com/sponsors/ including Shimano, Scott, Redbull, Pearl Izumi, Blue Seventy, Standard Process, Xlab, and Fuelbelt to name a few! 

To follow me check out: 
Website: www.angelanaeth.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/angelanaeth?ref=hl
Twitter: @AngelaNaeth
Race Day Coverage: www.ironmanlive.com 



 

IRONMAN TEXAS - Pre Race Questions with Pro Triathlete - PEDRO GOMES

Pedro Gomes is a PRO Triathlete looking to hit the North American Pro Championships hard this weekend in hopes to eventually achieve a spot on the start line in Kona. A win in Texas would guarantee that. 



For those that don't know Pedro, he is a top tier triathlete with many notable performances to include 3rd place overall at IRONMAN Wisconsin, and 1st at LIFETIME SOMA (Half IM) in 2014. Along with many other notable performances as well (shown below). 

Ironman Texas this weekend! Are you in town already? : Not yet. I'm actually getting ready to board a plane to Seattle where I'm visiting Vision/FSA headquarters. Very excited for that. I'll get to Texas Thursday night.

What other races have you done this season to build up to this one? How did they turn out? : I raced Texas 70.3 and Wildflower. I can't say either went well as I was led off the course on the run in Galveston and performed poorly at Wildflower. Although my focus was always IMTX, its always frustrating when you are weeks, months in a row putting time on the saddle and on the pool and that doesn't reflect on a race. But sometimes is just the way it goes.

Why did you choose IMTX? How does this race play into your goals for the rest of the year? : I've raced IMTX for 4 times already. I never had a good race so it is about time to break the curse and face my demons. I also knew it would be a very competitive field and I like to race the best. The race itself is a so-called A race for me on this points chase journey to Kona. I'm scheduled to race IM Coeur dAlene 6 weeks afterwards and between this two races I hope I have enough points to just focus on Kona the rest of the year.

Tell us a little about your race build up! How has your training been? Do you feel ready to roll?: Again, the first 70.3 races of the season were a bit disappointing. Which came as a true surprised as I had a very solid winter without any major setbacks or injuries. I didn't start to train until January so I come to this race still fresh. The ready to roll part - well, yes. Ready to get it done with my first IM of the season!

Have you ridden the course? Tell us about it if so. How do you feel about the heat?: Being based in Phoenix, the heat shouldn't be a problem although our weather here is much more dry. In Texas I expect nothing but a grueling hot day and I'm sure that can benefit me. The course is deceivingly hard as you can easily over do some of the rolling hills and burn way too many matches on the bike course just to pay for it on the marathon. I always remember the final 10 miles of the bike course as being hard - you are in The Woodlands, zigue zaguing thru the hoods and they take forever to go by. Its always a huge relief to see T2.

What's next after this? : I'll jump into a light week and have some interesting races to look forward to. First the Deuces Triathlon Festival in Show Low, AZ, and then Boulder 70.3 in June. Obviously all these preparing for the second big hit of the year at IM Coeur D Alene.

 








Triathlon- Worlds Dorkiest Sport? - by Paul Duncan


Please note: I am a triathlete too, and I HAVE done one or more of these things at some point in my life, and will probably  do them again.

Ok, don't get me wrong, I LOVE the sport of triathlon. It is one of my biggest passions in life,  but sometimes I just cant help to be embarrassed about calling myself a triathlete. The shit some of us do is completely ridiculous. 


Here is a list of why everyone is making fun of triathletes. What would you add to this? 

  • #1) Compression in public
    Why is it that every time I go to the airport, I see some clown with his neon colored compression calf socks on with Shorts? I totally understand the purpose of compression socks, but do you really find it necessary to have every one see them? Slow down Turbo, we get it you are going to a triathlon, awesome, put some damn jeans on. Wearing shorts on a airplane is gross anyway. If I sit next to some dude with hairy legs wearing shorts, I am going to be upset and probably accidentally spill coffee on you. 




     
  • #2) Social Media Workout bragging 
     I am not saying you should never post anything triathlon related to facebook/twitter, It's a huge part of our daily lives, so be proud, but seriously, no one cares about the details of every one of your workouts. They have created an app called Strava that was designed specifically for that. Hit it up my friends. 
     
  • #3) Finisher Medals to Dinner
    Dude, seriously, once you leave the race site, it's time to hang the finisher medal up.. Take a picture of it along with  your blistered feet, post it on Instagram, and call it a day.  Bringing the medal to dinner so your waiter can comment is far from necessary. 
     
  • #4) Tattoos 
    This might offend many of my friends, because this applies to many of them, but I mean this is the nicest way possible. Nothing blows my mind more than the people that tattoo a corporate logo to their calf because of the fact that they participated in an event. However, if anyone is willing to donate $1000 to my party fund, I will let them tattoo the Taco Bell logo on my ass. Any takers? $1500 for Burger King. 

     
  • #5) Absurd amounts of Stickers on cars. 
    70.3 stickers, 26.2 sticks, 140.6 stickers, M-Dot stickers... Less ridiculous than the tattoos, but still. Guys, we get it, you do triathlons. You are probably super fast too! For every "race related" sticker, make it a goal to also have one political sticker to balance it out. I like the Obama Care stickers personally. 
     
  • #6) Bike Set ups
    One of my favorite things to do when I am in transition is looking at the ridiculous things people put on their bikes. I once saw a banana taped to the top tube for a sprint triathlon!  I am still waiting for the day that someone has an entire pizza strapped to their handlebars. I promise, it doesn't have to be this complicated. 


    Please note: I am a triathlete too, and I HAVE done one or more of these things at some point in my life, and will probably  do them again. Please see my photo below. This article is intended as a joke,   If you take shit like this too seriously, I encourage you to seek guidance. Part of my full service coaching package includes weekly counseling. Sharing this post your twitter and Facebook would prove you have a sense of humor. 
 AUTHOR: Paul Duncan Jr                    USAT Coach/Best Friend                    twitter  @paulduncanjr 

AUTHOR: Paul Duncan Jr 
                  USAT Coach/Best Friend 
                  twitter  @paulduncanjr 

 OK - Andy Potts maybe makes casual compression look cool. If Andy does it, we all should do it. 

OK - Andy Potts maybe makes casual compression look cool. If Andy does it, we all should do it. 

 Awesome 

Awesome 

  IRONMAN? Rev 3? 

 IRONMAN? Rev 3? 

 Getting ready for a sprint triathlon 

Getting ready for a sprint triathlon 

Success vs Failure - by coach Paul Duncan

After a weekend with lots of racing. I get the joy of talking to many people about how their race went. Very few of those people ever seem to be happy with their result. What I tend to hear is a lot of people making excuse after excuse about why they didn't get to achieve their desired result. We are so wrapped up into finishing times, and overall placement that we tend to perceive every race as a failure unless it went 100% perfect, which it never does. 

Screen Shot 2015-04-29 at 6.39.57 PM.png

So, you had a shitty race, you didn't get that PR, you didn't get on that podium. Well, awesome, congratulations. 

Ok, before you say, "what the hell is this guy talking about?". I want to tell you guys, that I have spent my whole life being totally afraid of failure. I still struggle with this daily, just like the majority of the people reading this post probably do too. 

I am slowly starting to learn, that failure can be one of our greatest tools to becoming a better athlete, friend, spouse, person, etc... The key here is that you have to shut up long enough and listen to the lesson. 

Success is great! However too much success coming too easily can breed a big ego, pridefulness, and greediness. Not allowing the brain to grow, or for you to grow as a person. Failure, on the other had creates an opportunity for self reflection and humility. Very hard to have a big ego when you aren't "winning". Failure can teach us so many things about who we are as people but like I said, only if we are silent enough to listen to the lesson. 

When you fail at something, do you get angry? Resentful? Why? That anger and resentment is only blocking the opportunity to learn a lesson. Think of a failure as a new possibility in life that you didn't expect to happen. In triathlon, you can not "expect" everything to just go your way, all you can do is put 100% into what you are doing in that moment. You have to let everything else go. Sometimes you'll win, sometimes you'll just learn. Sometimes you'll get both. 

Think of every successful athlete you know right now at all levels. Do you think that person has had nothing but success, or do you think that athlete has had failures along the way? The most successful people in life have also failed the most. One common theme with successful athletes and successful people in general, is that all are willing to make sacrifice to reach their goals. Sacrifice equals giving 100% with no guarantee of desired outcome. 

I see so many talented people in all fields that are not willing to do what it takes to get to the next level simply because they are afraid of what might happen, afraid to fail. Why are we so afraid of failure? 

Screen Shot 2015-04-29 at 7.13.54 PM.png

Next time you have a perceived failure. Embrace it and take it as an opportunity to reflect and use it as a tool for learning. It's all part of the journey. If you aren't willing to take some failures before you reach your desired goals, you are in the wrong sport. 

Thanks for reading
Paul Duncan 

Triathlon Race Day Checklist

Race season is here! Not sure what to pack, use our quick checklist! These are just the basics! What would you add to this list? 
 

SWIM: 

  • Goggles
  • Wetsuit
  • Tri Suit or Swim suit 
  • Body Glide 
  • Swim Cap (if not provided) 


BIKE: 

  • Bike 
  • Bottles 
  • Spare Kit 
  • Sunglasses 
  • Helmet 
  • Bike Computer 
  • Cycling shoes 
     

RUN: 

  • Shoes 
  • Speed laces 
  • Socks 
  • Watch/Heart rate monitor

Other Items: 

  • Sunscreen 
  • Chamois cream
  • bodywash (post race) #cleanupnice
  • Transition Bag
  • Race Fuel

 

What would you add to this list? 

 

 

 

Check out our other posts! 







Outstrip Buyers Guide - SWIM GOGGLES!

Not sure which goggles to buy? Here is a quick list of our favorites. 
 

  BLUE SEVENTY VISION  - 180 degree visibility  - Fits most head shapes - Super comfortable  - Soft & oversized silicon gaskets   

BLUE SEVENTY VISION
- 180 degree visibility 
- Fits most head shapes
- Super comfortable 
- Soft & oversized silicon gaskets

 

ROKA F2 MIRRORED 
- Available in 8 different tints 
- SUPER soft silicone gaskets 
- Polycarbonate lenses 

 

  TYR Special Ops 2.0 w Transition Lens  - Photochromic transition Lens for indoor or outdoor use - Long lasting anti-fog - Extra wide peripheral range 

TYR Special Ops 2.0 w Transition Lens
- Photochromic transition Lens for indoor or outdoor use
- Long lasting anti-fog
- Extra wide peripheral range 

SPEEDO BULLET: 
- Priced for budget and quality balance 
- Great for training or racing 
- Simple adjustment straps 
- Mirrored for reduced glare
 

  Aqua Sphere Kayenne:   - Oversized lens for 180 Degree Visibility  - Quickfit adjustment buckle  - Scratch resistant lens with anti-fog  If you found this list helpful, check out some of our other posts.    GUIDELINES: TRAINING WHILE SICK (GUEST POST BY VINNY JOHNSON)     WORKOUT OF THE WEEK! DESCENDING BEST EFFORT SET     IRON DISTANCE RACE PACING - GUEST POST BY PATRICK WHEELER     

Aqua Sphere Kayenne: 
- Oversized lens for 180 Degree Visibility 
- Quickfit adjustment buckle 
- Scratch resistant lens with anti-fog

If you found this list helpful, check out some of our other posts. 

GUIDELINES: TRAINING WHILE SICK (GUEST POST BY VINNY JOHNSON) 

WORKOUT OF THE WEEK! DESCENDING BEST EFFORT SET 

IRON DISTANCE RACE PACING - GUEST POST BY PATRICK WHEELER


 

Angela (Duncan) Naeth gives thoughts post Oceanside 70.3

Angela Naeth ventured into Oceanside 70.3 this past weekend against a stacked field. After a solid swim, she managed to find her way into 2nd position by the end of the bike until she was dinged with a drafting penalty. 5:00 in the penalty tent put her out of contention for the win, but she managed to fight on for 5th place. 

I got a chance to ask her some questions about the race. Here we go. 

 

 

Tell us about your weekend in Oceanside. Fun times?  Yes! Anytime near an ocean is usually fun for me, especially when it's warm. Plus, my husband was around and we shared a condo with fellow Qt2 athletes Kait and Matt. We had some good food, time around the ocean, saw a spectacular sunset and of course, the race. 

What was your plan of attack going into the race? How did it unfold?  Plan of attack: go hard. :-) I managed to go by feel for most of the race and by that I mean go as hard as I can really. I had a solid swim, an OK bike (minus the 5 minute penalty) and good run. There's more in the tank and it's a fine line just how hard one can push in all three disciplines. It's an art really and my canvas is not perfected. I still have to work on grabbing those feet in the water, pushing to my capabilities on the bike and pushing thru that door on the run.  The gals were strong and it was a great race. 

Did you see any sharks? Sea Lions? Surfers?  Ah yes! The day before the race I was so stoked to go out and swim in the ocean. I saw the surfers, but unbeknownst to me, I was in their territory and they were going to show me just  that. I managed to get thru the wake and into nice water and played like a dolphin. When it was time to head back to shore, I figured I'd have some fun body surfing the waves. My delight turned into utter terror when a surfer jumped on his board and was directing himself right to me. I dove under water as the wave crashed and prayed I wasn't going to get hit and stayed down as long as I could. As soon I came up, another wave was crashing down and yet another surfer was headed in my direction. I've never been so scared for my life! This time, my cap and goggles flew off and I rose to the surface panicked. I managed to get clear but not until my husband had to yell at me and get me focused on going to shore. It's crazy how your mind goes when in panic mode! 

Prior to the race there were three sea lions at the swim start. My heart was jolted and I think it actually helped my swim! :-) 

You got a 5:00 penalty on the bike, why did you feel the need for cheating? What happened?  Haha. It was an unfortunate one. Mixed up with a few male pros and making a pass. I was the unlucky one with the call and if I could refute it I would! But it's a call I had to take and focus on getting to the Penalty tent as fast as I could. 

What's it like to sit in the penalty tent for 5 minutes? Are you allowed to pee while you are waiting?  5 minutes is a rough one in such a strong field. It sucks seeing your competitors come flying in on their bikes and heading out to run. Every minute seems like ten. The only advantage is that I was able to down some more fluids and nutrition that were on my bike. No peeing allowed. Lucky for me, I didn't have to go! 

Did you eat any snack cakes at the finish line? What about at the start line? Snack cakes? What are these snack cakes? Canadians don't have this in the repertoire of goodies. If I recall, I got a few tacos for you and some grapes for me! I had to head out for a 30minute run so another gel went in the belly! 

At the start line, nothing but the salt water I engulfed shortly thereafter!   

Guidelines: Training While Sick (Guest Post by Vinny Johnson)

Spring always seems to bring on the sickness. More often than not, a lot of us will find ourselves sprawled out on the couch sick instead of outside training.  I asked QT2 Systems coach/professional triathlete Vinny Johnson, to give us some guidance on training protocols when you are under the weather. Take a look: 


How you deal with illness can make or break your training. Not just for that cycle/period, but ultimately the quality of the next cycle and season overall.  Through personal experience and working with other athletes, here are some guidelines to get back to 100% as soon as possible.

The first step is to understand how and why your body is reacting to the onset of illness.  If the illness is a head cold, training can resume as dictated (for the most part).  However, once an illness seems to spread outside of the head area, care must be taken to ensure that you get back to 100% as soon as possible. 

Once an illness starts to make its way below the neck line, you can actually cause an increase in the severity of symptoms by continuing to move forward with prescribed training.  What can start out as a "cold" can quickly progress into more severe symptoms by adding more stress to the body as it shifts energy into combating the virus.

Once an athlete suggests to me that they aren't feeling well, I will ask them if it is confined to the head/neck area.  If symptoms are showing up outside of this area I will prescribe an initial 24-48 hour "off" period from training.  During this time, nutrition/hydration and rest are the most important pieces of training that can be accomplished to ward off the spread of more severe symptoms.  Taking these few days completely off will only enhance the quickness of getting back to 100% health, and back to normal quality training.  The worst move would be to continue to add stress to the body, since it will allow the illness to linger longer than it would under normal circumstances.

After this initial break from training, we will then need to come to an agreement on how the athlete is feeling overall.  I use the following guidelines to gauge what type of training can be accomplished during this period. 

If the athlete feels 85% normal or worse, NO training is worth doing.  The athlete still needs to continue to rest and recover.  This is always a hard call, since we "feel" as athletes that because we aren't training as dictated by our cycle workouts, that we are taking a step back.  But there is 0 point, in continuing to swim/bike/run if we aren't at optimal health.  Moving forward at 85% or less will cause mediocre/poor workout performance.  Long term this has more of a negative impact in overall fitness.  The efforts to drive performance are fruitless, since the body is more concerned with fighting off the pathogen.

If an athlete is feeling about 85%, I will have them cover durations of workouts at a VERY low effort level.  Basically, recovery zones.  If an athlete is feeling about 85-90%, I will have them cover durations at a recovery/easy aerobic effort level.  If the athlete is feeling about 90-95%, they can cover efforts at their aerobic zones.  95-99%, they can work into aerobic threshold (tempo) type work.  Only if an athlete is at 100%, will I allow them to cover their best sustained effort levels.

Gauging your percent of health, is always a grey area.  So when in doubt, always go lower on your perceived level of feeling 100% healthy.  It is always to be safer than sorry. The percent, is more a gauge of energy levels and feelings of sickness, most of the time it is with respect to that achy feeling.  So the percent, is really a measure of how fueled you are, and is in a good indication of where energy is flowing in your body.  Is energy going to fight off illness or is it going into muscle for activity. Focus for an athlete, needs to be in 24 hour windows.  To often, we feel one day might negatively affect our race which may be months down the line.  Divert energy into the things directly in your control, and don't waste energy on things out of your control.  You are always in direct control of the things you are doing in 24 hour segments, so focus on that.  Never make a decision one day, negatively affect your tomorrow.  Always think of things you can do in 24 hours, that will make the next 24 hours better.  This is focusing on nutrition/hydration/sleep/fueling.  If you nail those 4 things, every day, swim/bike/run performance will always fall into place.

As athletes, we can't help but feel like we have to do everything in our training program.  We need that satisfaction mentally, and emotionally to check off that box of accomplishing a workout.  If you are under the weather, you HAVE to listen to your body and take the steps IT needs to get back to 100%, even if that means not working out.  You may not get the mental/emotional satisfaction of submitting that workout, but instead you will get a healthier you long term. In the end, that is the ultimate goal, to get to the start line at 100%. 

Time dealing with an illness, and not working out is often viewed as time off, or recovery.  So there is a need post-illness to "make up" the lost stress that wasn't covered.  This is also a bad move, since the body was by no means in "off/recovery" status while it was dealing with an illness.  Instead, it was put through the ringer, just like it would have been if it was exposed to training/racing efforts.  The nutritional deficit post illness is a huge one.  So if an athlete tries to make up work/stress post illness, they will over draft their stress budget and be open to the illness coming back or a new one setting in.  Illness is NOT recovery/nothing, so it should be treated as a stress just like workouts would be.

The quality of your season, and performance at your 'A' race will be dictated by how you deal with adversity getting in the way of your daily training.  If illness is an adversity that shows up within your season, be respectful of what the body needs to go through in order to get back to 100%.  Taking short time periods of no training, or adjusting intensity of training as you deal will illness will go a long way to improve the overall quality of your season. If a workout can't be accomplished at 100%, or near that, you really have to ask yourself "is this going to be worth it long term?"...."will what I do today, make be better tomorrow?"....if the answer is no, then don't do it.  Live to fight another day.  Checking off a box, in order to complete a workout, doesn't always make you a better athlete.

 About the author - Vinny Johnson is a Professional Triathlete, high school teacher, and triathlon coach for  QT2 systems . He was also nominated by many different magazines for having the best beard in triathlon. 

About the author - Vinny Johnson is a Professional Triathlete, high school teacher, and triathlon coach for QT2 systems. He was also nominated by many different magazines for having the best beard in triathlon.