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Stuff About Balance...

work-life-balance-600x600.gifImage - Pretend that "Triathlon" is in the "Friends" circle.

By Justin Chester (usatriathlon.org)

I recently had a friend ask me, “You’ve trained for an ultra-distance race; are all IRONMAN triathletes completely obsessed and self-absorbed?”

Obsessed … probably, but more like passionate. Self-absorbed? That struck me as a little derogatory. But as I dug deeper, I found that her boyfriend was training for an IRONMAN and was completely ignoring their budding relationship (and in a few months they would eventually break up). Was there a communication problem? Probably. But it is easy to see that as he started training longer hours their relationship started to take a downward turn.

I could definitely sympathize with the situation — I’ve been on both sides. As an athlete, my wife and I have had some serious conversations about my triathlon habit. And as a coach, I’ve had to have long conversations with athletes (and their significant others). So let’s talk about balance.

Read any time management book and the first thing it will tell you to do is to establish priorities. So let’s put them in order....

Life Time & Ironman & Other Stuff...

commit-to-tri.gifBy Dan Empfield (Slowtwitch.com - Jan. 29, 2015)

Announced at the TBI Conference this week was the rebranding of several races reminding me of a baseball card swap. Soma and Bend, former Life Time (or Life Time Fitness branded "Leadman") races will henceforth be Ironman branded. Soma will become a 70.3, Bend will likely become a 70.3 (rather than a full) and will be so-branded in 2016. Addressing the Conference were Ironman's Andrew Messick (right) and Life Time Fitness head of events Kimo Seymour. Slides below were among those presented to Conference attendees.

One takeaway is obvious: Ironman realizes its brand leverages down to 70.3 and no further. Life Time admits its brand leverages up to Olympic distance and no higher. Smart. This signals the end of the 5i50, even if that is unannounced. I'm not writing this because it's a stated fact, rather it's the obvious conclusion. But then some of us knew in 2011 that the 5i50 was a bridge too far and it just needed its contracts to run out; then it would be laid to rest in an unmarked grave...

Emergency Waxectomy...

lincoln-ear.gifBy Bonnie Cerumenclog

The good news is that I had my blood pressure checked today and it's never been better, even under stress, which leads me to the part of why I had come in, bursting through the doors of the medical center looking like a wild eyed and frenzied patient, soon to be admitted to the mental ward...
Some of you know that I love to swim. It's one of the few exercises I can do that doesn't hurt. With as many broken pieces, past surgeries and weird health issues as I have/had, it's a wonder breathing doesn't hurt. Wait... that hurts sometimes too. But this isn't about my lungs. It's about what I lost and why the nurse at the doctor's office didn't wait for the doctor to finish up with his current patient and get to my chart. She took action right then and there.
So there I was, innocently preparing to enjoy my 1700 meter swim, wearing my Ironman swim cap that had recently arrived in the mail because the last cap I had was actually molding over and I just couldn't bear to put it on and feel the slimy surface any longer. I am super stoked to be an Ironman, but compared to then and looking at me now... let's just say... I'm not exactly in tip-top shape with a low...

Watching Heather Swim...

hl-kit.gifSwimming Drills & a New Bike...

By Heather Lendway (heatherlendway.com)

I went to the pool this weekend to do some swim filming.   I wanted to share a set of swimming drills to help with some common swimming problems I see in triathlon. Please note drills are not meant to be done at top speeds, oftentimes you’ll be swimming at a much slower pace, the purpose is to concentrate on the issue you’re trying to resolve and executing the drill properly. (Check out my new Blueseventy loop dot training suit, I love the cut, very comfortable and a flattering look)

Problem: Sinking hips, legs and feet....

Thinking About Stuff...

brett-lovaas.gifPhoto - Brett Lovaas and a guy with a Yosemite Sam mustache.

By Warren Peece

There were several reasons why pros weren’t included on Team Minnesota in 2014. One is that we didn’t know how to measure the value of pro performances, especially the men’s. None of our state’s four male pros had great seasons last year. DKT was battling injuries. Hedge got married. PP raced sparingly and Devon chased an Ironman dream that didn’t come true. Twice. How, for instance, do you compare, say, an 8th place finish in a pro race to a course record amateur win? Remember, Team Minnesota selection is based on the quality of one’s resume, not who’s better than who on paper.

Then there’s Gwen Jorgensen, who has raced in only one Minnesota triathlon, Life Time - Minneapolis back in July of 2012. She’s the best draft-legal female triathlete in the world, and unquestionably the best DL female that the US has ever produced. But how do you compare “Team” racing with “Individual” racing?

But the #1 reason we excluded pros last year was that the amateur women were totally rocking socks. By eliminating Gwen and Ruth, we freed up two Team MN slots. Still, great athletes with great resumes, women like Lisa Lendway, Gaby Bunten, Nicole Cueno, Kelly Trom, Claire Bootsma, Cheryl Zitur found themselves on the outside looking in....

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