bennett_black.pngMinnesota's elite amateur men didn't rock in Olympic distance races in 2016 like they had in the previous half dozen years. Let's take a look at that.

As a rule of thumb, sub two hour times define elite amateur performances at this distance, which breaks down as follows: 1500m swim, 37-42K bike, 10K run.

How wide was the disparity in recent years? In 2015, Minnesota male amateurs receorded 21 sub-2-hour performances, with Bennett Isabella (photo L) leading the way with four. In 2016, only  nine such efforts were turned in, with Sean Cooley (photo below R) posting one-third of those.

What explains the disparity? Two explanations come to mind. First, several of our state's fastest guys--sub-2 guys--were injured or, for other reasons, did not race in 2016. At the top of this list was Isabella, followed by Devon Palmer, Brian Sames, Nick Nygaard and Larry Hosch.

Second, Nationals was contested in Omaha. Its courses were more challenging than those of the previous five years (Milwaukee and Burlington), and its weather was...

Become a Faster Runner (Without Running)...

Unknown.jpgBy Mark Eller (triathlete.com)

Endurance athletes are a hardworking lot, so the promise of “free speed” often strikes us as empty, and maybe even a touch offensive. However, once you get us talking about improvements we have made in training, gear or diets, we are usually eager to share the discoveries that have helped improve our performances. That’s the goal with this article—to share some well-documented techniques that could help you get faster on the run specifically, beyond the obvious (and undeniably effective) advice to run more miles and train harder.

Wear Lighter Shoes

Researchers have established that reducing the shoe weight by 100 grams typically yields about a 1 percent increase in performance. That’s a pretty big gain that could be...

Their Least Favorite Part of Triathlon...

020216_swim.pngBy WILL MURRAY | FEB. 02, 2016, teamusa.org
Their least favorite part of triathlon: how some athletes contemplate swimming in a lake, reservoir, river, bay or ocean. Just thinking about an open water swim can cause some athletes to sense shortness of breath, tightness in the chest, even sweating and tunnel vision. For others, their emotions around open water swimming run from minor dread to something just short of terror. Some athletes describe their feelings as a “panic attack.”

It doesn’t have to be this way. There are fast, easy, effective and durable techniques to help any athlete achieve comfort and enjoyment in big water. These techniques address both physical and psychological aspects of and many of them you can do by yourself in the privacy of your own mind....

Brilliant People Wear Crazy Socks...


ED. Okay. This is not a triathlon article. But it is very cool and, we think, relevant to your lives.

By Jenny Marchal (lifehack.org)

How do you feel about socks? Depending on how you view them, they can either be a necessity – in which case black, blue or grey will do – or they are a window to the way you can show off your individuality, personality and non-conformed attitudes. Sounds too dramatic and crazy? Well, a new study has found the whacky and crazy socks you choose to wear not only say a lot about you, but also say a lot about how people see you. Here’s how....

Heirs Apparent...

Nathan.pngMaggie_W.pngThough it may seem like a tough nut to crack, history tells us that one or two athletes will make their Team Minnesota debut in 2017.

It will be especially hard to find a spot on the women's team. Never have the women's fields been as deep as they have been over the last 3-4 years. And Elaine Nelson's return after childbirth will make it even tougher for the next newcomer.

On the men's side, it should be noted that a few of the 2015 Team MInnesota guys that didn't race in 2016, e.g. Bennett Isabella and Nick Nygaard, plan to return this year, which will create additional roadblocks for the newcomers.

Still, we think that at least one new male, and one new female, will earn a spot on their gender's Team....

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