Your best triathlon season awaits! On today’s episode, coaches John Mayfield and Elizabeth James provide 19 tips to help you make the most of your training sessions and prepare for race day. This episode is packed with practical information to help you maximize your fitness gains, skills, and enjoyment of the sport. From race-day skills to strength training, nutrition, mental training and training quality, this episode has information for everyone! As you begin a new year, use these tips for your best season yet!
TriDot Podcast .119 19 Tips to Transform Your Triathlon Training Intro: This is the TriDot podcast. TriDot uses your training data and genetic profile, combined with predictive analytics and artificial intelligence to optimize your training, giving you better results in less time with fewer injuries. Our podcast is here to educate, inspire, and entertain. We’ll talk all things triathlon with expert coaches and special guests. Join the conversation and let’s improve together. Andrew Harley: Welcome to the TriDot podcast! We are starting 2022 off with a really fun show. I’ve got two of our TriDot coaches with me today to kick off the year in podcasting with 19 triathlon training tips that all of us can take into our training. Some of these tips are pretty fun, some are pretty practical, and some are pretty motivating so I’m excited to get into it today. Our first guest joining the fun is Coach John Mayfield. John is a USAT Level II and Ironman U certified coach who leads TriDot’s athlete services, ambassador, and coaching programs. He has coached hundreds of athletes ranging from first-timers to Kona qualifiers and professional triathletes. John has been using TriDot since 2010 and coaching with TriDot since 2012. John, welcome to the very first show of the year, 2022. John Mayfield: So that math just hit me that 2012 to 2022; that means it’s a decade now. So excited to still be around after a decade. So that’s really cool. Andrew: Can we officially say it’s your triversary? John: Yep, sure. Andrew: Next up is pro triathlete and coach Elizabeth James. Elizabeth is a USAT Level II and Ironman U certified coach, who quickly rose through the triathlon ranks using TriDot from a beginner, to top age grouper, to a professional triathlete. She’s a Kona and Boston Marathon qualifier who has coached triathletes with TriDot since 2014. Elizabeth, how do you feel about the list of tips that we have today? Elizabeth James: I think that this is just going to be a great episode to kick off the new year. I mean as you said Andrew, you know there are some practical things here that I think all athletes are going to be able to implement into their training and then some tips that I think are going to be some aha moments for this training season. So yeah. Let’s do it! Andrew: I’m Andrew the Average Triathlete, Voice of the People and Captain of the Middle of the Pack. As always we'll approach the show like any other workout. We’ll roll through our warm up question, settle in for our main set conversation, and then wind things down with our cool down. Lots of good stuff, but before we get to it Elizabeth, real quick, why don’t you tell us about the preseason research project that TriDot is conducting right now. Elizabeth: Yeah, I would be happy to. So right now, TriDot is running the like 2021 edition; I know we’re in 2022, but this started at the end of last year; so it’s the 2021 edition of our annual research project and we call that the Preseason Project. We are currently looking for non-TriDot athletes to join the project. So qualifying athletes get two free months of TriDot training, and yes you heard that right. Two free months and that’s in exchange for TriDot getting to analyze the training data that comes in from those sessions. So really I mean this is a huge win-win for everybody. I am always very passionate about the Preseason Project because this is how I first found TriDot. So I came to TriDot through the 2014 edition and I had just signed up for my first full distance Ironman event. I knew I was going to need the support, structure and guidance to reach the finish line of Ironman Wisconsin and TriDot really provided all of that and more. After going through the first few months of the Preseason Project I was so impressed with just the progress that I was making in each discipline so I stuck with TriDot and I mean here we are 2022 and I have achieved more athletic accomplishments than I ever thought was going to be possible. I mean TriDot led me to age group wins, a Kona qualification, earning my pro card, part of the process of me becoming a coach so I am incredibly thankful for the Preseason Project and how I kind of got acquainted with TriDot through that and I mean this is just a great opportunity. So if you’re already training with TriDot, I mean now is the best time to invite your tri friends to participate and if you’re a podcast listener and maybe have never given our training a try, no pun intended there, really do have that opportunity. So head to tridot.com/PSP and then join us for the preseason research project and enjoy two free months of TriDot training. Warm up theme: Time to warm up! Let’s get moving. Andrew: Recording and posting this episode just after the holidays we have a fun opportunity here to find out what tri related items our coaches got this year for Christmas. On the backside of the holiday what was a standout triathlon related Christmas present that you received this year? Elizabeth I’ll start with you. Elizabeth: You’re probably starting with me because you know exactly what I’m going to say. You knew this one already for me. I got a treadmill… Andrew: Ooo! Elizabeth: …and I am just super, super pumped. I mean there’s great running routes near my house. There’s plenty of treadmills at the gym, but gosh the convenience of just having one right next to the bike trainer is something that I’ve really missed over the past year. We’ve had a broken treadmill sitting in the home gym for about a year. Andrew: Oh no! Elizabeth: We were able to take advantage of some of those Black Friday sales and haul that one to the curb and put a nice, new one in there. So I cannot wait. I’m really glad to have that back again for this next year of training. John: Too many miles and too fast. Elizabeth just destroyed the treadmill. I’m sure that’s– you know. Most people never get to the end of their useful life of a treadmill. It just becomes the clothes hanger, but yeah Elizabeth apparently just destroyed hers. Elizabeth: Yes we did. John: Killed it. Elizabeth: We ran this one out. Andrew: John Mayfield, what– and I think I have a feeling what you are probably going to say as well, but tell the people what you received around Christmas time tri related this year. John: Yeah so my Christmas came early for me. Just a couple days. I got a new bike. So this was not a planned Christmas gift nor was it really a gift because I gave it to myself I guess you could say. I actually ordered– Andrew: It just happened to come at Christmas time. John: Yes. Well yeah. It’s a very long story. It’s a year long story in fact. So I actually ordered this bike back in January, but as things went in 2021 there were production issues, supply chain issues, all that. So what originally was supposed to be like an April or May delivery turned into “I don’t know when” it’s going to come in, but you know I just kind of patiently waited. I had some great bike splits on my old bike so all was well. Then yeah, right before Christmas my guy called and said “hey it’s coming in and it’s going to be ready for pickup next week.” So yeah, I believe it was like the day before Christmas Eve that I went and got fit and got it all decked out and brought it home and I have yet to ride it, but I am hoping to change that sooner than later. Andrew: Yep so you got one last unexpected season on your Specialized Shiv that has served you so well. The Specialized Shiv will now be relegated to trainer duty and you’ve got your Argon 18 ready for action now so congrats on that. John it’s a beautiful bike; gorgeous bike. I got much smaller triathlon related things than the two of you this year. I did not get a– Elizabeth: I was thinking you were going to say something like swim spa you know just so we had all three together. Andrew: Just to one up. Elizabeth: Yeah. Andrew: Yeah, just to one up you guys. Elizabeth: Be like “treadmill, bike, well ha! I’ve got a swim spa in the backyard.” John: A pool! Andrew: That would have been something. So for Christmas this year I got a couple smaller things that are really meaningful. Completing my first Ironman this year obviously that was a big accomplishment for me, something that I had been working for for a long time. I got a couple nice pieces of memorabilia towards that. One of them wasn’t inherently a Christmas gift, but it was given to me in December. TriDot coach Kyle Stone as I crossed the line at Challenge Daytona he was standing there and he had gotten me a Yeti thermos for my coffee that had my Ironman Waco finish time inscribed on it. My cousin, Brittney, who lives in Florida, she's a trail runner, marathon runner so she knows how meaningful a bigtime finish line is. She got me an ornament for the Christmas tree that’s a wood ornament. It has the Ironman Waco logo and it has my finish time on it. So that was really cool from her. Then my sister-in-law Megan, when I finished my first 70.3 she found a shop on Etsy that kind of does like these little 8½ x 11 posters that you can frame and put in your pain cave that shows the course and then your finish time below it. So it’s got the outline of the swim course overlaid on top of the outline of the bike course, outline of the run course and your finish time. So she had one of those made for me for my first 70.3 a couple of years ago. So she revised that and got me one for my first Ironman finish. So it’s got the course of Ironman Waco outlined in a little poster with my finish times. John Mayfield actually posted on the TriDot Facebook group right after Christmas. He was so excited to see what everybody got, he already put a post out there that said “Hey, what’d everybody get for Christmas?” and there was a ton of answers there. But just in case you missed that one, since we’re bringing this back up again on the podcast we will throw out a post today asking you what was your favorite triathlon related item that you got for Christmas? Can’t wait to see what you have to say. Main set theme: On to the main set. Going in 3…2…1… TRITATS: Our main set today is brought to you TRITATS. Whether you’re a seasoned Ironman or gearing up for your first local sprint tri, TRITATS will help you make your mark. These tough, stylish and easy-to-use race number tattoos make you look and feel like a pro. I have raced countless local sprint and Olympic tri’s where I showed up thinking I would have plenty of time to settle in transition, only to find a massive line waiting to be body marked. Switching to TRITATS has allowed me to show up on race morning with my focus on the finish line and not the body marking line. I can put my race number on at home and walk right into the transition to prepare my gear for the race. Friends don’t let friends race with Sharpied-on numbers. So, as a friend of the podcast, head to TriTats.com and use promo code TRIDOT for 10% off your order. Again, that’s TriTats.com, promo code TRIDOT. Andrew: 19 triathlon training tips coming at you here in the main set today and I trust there will be something here for everyone. We’ve done a few episodes like this one; episodes 95, 97, and 99 gave us 18 swim tips, 20 bike tips, and 22 run tips to learn from and as we planned those episodes plenty of training tips came up that were great, super helpful, fantastic stuff, but they weren’t swim, bike, or run specific. So the need for this episode was born and I’m excited to get to it today. So Elizabeth, why don’t you kick us off with triathlon training tip #1. Elizabeth: I would be happy to do that. So tip #1 is just kind of from the attitude of “we get to do this.” So train with a grateful heart, race with a grateful heart. I know for me this is going to be something really important that I’m going to be taking into the beginning of my 2022 training. I am coming off one of probably the most significant injuries that I’ve had in my triathlon training and have been without running or biking for quite some time and as I get back to it you can be sure that I’m going to be training with a very grateful heart to be back to those activities that I’ve been missing and loving. But you know, even when we are in full health, that’s something to be incredibly grateful for too. To know that, okay, my body is in a condition and it’s cooperating with me to be able to participate in these activities and do what I love. Then same thing, taking that attitude out on the race course and just really relishing in the opportunity of what we have to be able to do. Andrew: Yep, I mean there’s nothing like losing the ability to race or losing the ability to train even temporarily to remind you of what a blessing it is to get to do it, what a blessing it is to get to line up for the next training session, to get to line up for that next race day. I know all of us getting to do some races in 2021 after so many races were “Corona’d” in 2020, it was just such a reminder that race day is precious. That starting line is precious and yeah, what better way to start off our show with triathlon training tips than to kind of have that reminder going into the new year that every day we get to go out the front the door and go for a run or hop in the pool and go for a swim. I mean there’s days you don’t want to. There’s days you don’t feel like it, but it’s always a gift to be able to. So thanks for that Elizabeth. John Mayfield, what is triathlon training tip #2? John: So, not to harp on something yet again, but doing the right training right obviously is critical. We have two full podcast episodes dedicated to this. Those are episodes #9 and 93 so I won’t park here too, too long, but just in thinking through that it matters what you do. It matters the training that you follow and then how well you execute that training and that’s really what’s going to make the difference. Something I hear often around race day especially as the nerves are coming in, especially for those big races. A very common phrase you’ll hear is “trust your training”, but it’s not necessarily anything you want to say to people at the time, but it’s like “why are you necessarily trusting your training?” I guess at that point it’s all you have to go off of because it’s too late to do anything different, but it’s well known and established that not all training is equal. There is going to be better alternatives than others. So you know, maybe you shouldn’t trust your training. If your training is just some template or just something that was not created for you. Maybe it’s just random, whatever came to you that particular day. You know, that may or may not be sufficient for race day. So you hear that a lot, but sometimes I wonder like if you just pulled out a map to somewhere it’s like just because you have a map that doesn’t necessarily mean you’re going to get to your destination. So you have a map, that doesn’t mean you should necessarily trust the map. So doing that might get you in trouble. So as we say often, it’s critical that you do the right training right. Elizabeth: One of the other things I heard this last week, somebody was talking about training and exercise and I mean it is so important to do the right training that we’re talking about. There’s only so many gains that can be done from random acts of exercise and just kind of– I mean they were going on this whole thing about random acts of kindness and you know they threw in this random acts of exercise and that’s true. Andrew: Wow. Elizabeth: If it’s random, you’re not going to be purposeful. You’re not going to see those results. So yeah, doing the right training right, that’s important. If you are doing the right training– training that’s optimized for you– you can trust that when you get to the starting line. Andrew: It will be no surprise to anybody listening that we recommend this thing called TriDot in case you’ve never heard of it. Go look up TriDot training and do the right training and do it right. Elizabeth James, what is triathlon training tip #3? Elizabeth: Tip #3 is don’t sabotage your training with too much or improperly timed racing. This is kind of another thing that we’ve talked about before with planning your season and making sure that you don’t miss the opportunity to build your strength and speed before adding the stamina. So that strong before long, fast before far. I mean, racing is fun. I love racing, but having a purposefully planned season can allow you to get stronger and then have better results when you do race. So maybe consider adding some shorter distance races or lower priority races to really help you prepare for the main goals of the season and I think this is another great one that we’re bringing up here in the first part of the year. You know, as people are still kind of looking ahead to what their season is going to be and what that would look like, you know, definitely put down those A races first on your plan. Put those into your season planner and then see how other events might support your development toward those events, but don’t just put a whole bunch of random things on your calendar and expect that that is going to get you your best results for your last event of the year. John: So I think two common mistakes that are largely I think based on what kind of makes sense is oftentimes we will see the athletes that are doing that 70.3 a couple weeks out from the Ironman. We’ve talked about it before. It’s obviously somewhat suggested by Ironman and the fact that so many of the Ironman races have a 70.3 a couple weeks prior, it’s a great opportunity to go see the course and experience that, but as we’ve discussed before there’s a very high cost to racing that 70.3 in lead up to that Ironman race. You lose a tremendous amount of very valuable time. So for a lot of people, that is not going to be the best use of that time. So that is exactly what kind of thing Elizabeth is speaking to is planning that season to set yourself up for success. Another thing we see very common is if an athlete is racing say a 70.3 in the summer as their A race their going to train for a half marathon through the winter months thinking that I’m going to build my stamina to run that half marathon and then I’ll be ready to do that in the summer, but we’ve been able to demonstrate those preseason months are much better utilized as Elizabeth said working on speed and power to increase those thresholds, then adding the stamina as race day approaches. So that stamina that you gain in the winter isn’t going to be there for you in the summer unless you just continue to do a very high amount of volume which again is not going to be your most productive training. So kind of a great tip, rule of thumb, is whatever you’re racing A race in the summer, do half of that in the winter months. So if you’re racing Ironman in the summer, focus on a half marathon. If it’s a 70.3, do a 10K. If it’s an Olympic, run a 5K and really nail those in your winter months. Then top it off as race day approaches. Andrew: So I’m going to take triathlon training tip #4. This is something I’m pretty passionate about and enjoy doing myself and it’s to read books and to listen to interviews with the pros. There’s a lot that we can learn from our friends in the professional field like Elizabeth James. There’s a lot that we can learn just about their determination, their passion, the way they train, the way they approach the sport, their mindset, how they execute races. You know, follow pros on social media, see what they're up to. It just really rounds out the experience in the sport somewhat and a lot of these folks, you know, they work full time jobs. A lot of these folks have families. A lot of them go through adversity and struggles and they’re very open with those adversities and struggles and it’s just a reminder that the pros are people too. I’ve watched just recently on social media, I think of Gwen Jorgensen, has been honest with a recent injury that she is fighting through. I’ve seen guys like Ben Kanute and Ben Hoffman in the past year or so. Tim O’Donnell add children to their families and they’re being honest about what it’s like to train while having kids and so it’s just really cool to see the pros deal with that and navigate that the same way that we do. I’m obviously a big fan of podcasts so have to recommend– there’s several fantastic running, triathlon, etcetera podcasts that do a great job experiencing the pros. Follow these folks on YouTube. A lot of them have great YouTube shows where you can see what they’re doing and it’s just a really cool way to connect to the professional field of our sport. Elizabeth James, our resident pro here at TriDot, what is triathlon training tip #5? Elizabeth: Tip #5 is to say thanks to those who have helped with your tri journey. This kind of goes back to that first important tip about just training with a grateful heart, but not only being grateful for it but here we kind of have the action for it in tip #5 with saying thank you. I mean it really is important to express that gratitude and that thanks to people that have supported you and whether that’s the family members in your household that pick up some extra chores when the training hours get a little more lengthy closer to your event or just the words of encouragement from a friend or the training buddies that you do your group ride with every Saturday. Really expressing your thankfulness for them just puts such a positive spin on the sport, on the community and is just a great thing for everybody. Andrew: TriDot athlete Shannon Cranson, one of our wonderful ambassadors, one of our TriDot athletes who is a member of the Betty Squad. She raced Ironman Waco with myself and several others and she was the first athlete who has given me a handwritten thank you card just saying “hey thanks for all the podcasts, all the information” and she found– and longtime listeners of the podcast will know the significance of this. She found some Cheez-It socks and gave me a pair of Cheez-It socks that have been a huge hit around the Harley household. They’re very cozy. John: Oftentimes especially as big races approach we get asked, “so what are your last minute tips or what are you holding out?” It’s like, we don’t hold out anything. We have over 100 episodes of podcasts. It’s like, we’re telling you everything we can, but one of the things that I always really enjoy sharing with athletes in those last couple days as that big race is coming up is to really express their gratitude to those that helped get them there. Because every single person on that start line got there because someone helped along the way and I’ve often told them that you’re going to think of those people throughout the day especially the longer the race especially the more painful the race. When things get tough your mind is going to go to those people, to those loved ones, to those friends, those training partners and I can always tell you you’re going to be so glad when that moment comes knowing that you told them thank you. Knowing that you expressed that gratitude. I think that’s just something that’s– I love sharing that and then seeing them and then afterwards the feedback is always great. You know, “I’m so glad. That did happen. I thought of my kids and I was so glad that I just got that opportunity to say thank you to my kids or my training parters, my coach, my spouse whoever it is that helped you get there.” And I say to everybody, just express love and gratitude to all those people because again, they’re going to come to mind and you’ll be really glad that you did and really draw energy off of it as well. Elizabeth: And it really means the world to the people on the receiving end of that. I mean, in my home office I have kind of a little mailbox, letter, kind of holder… Andrew: Oh, that’s so fun. Elizabeth: …and it has every single handwritten letter that I’ve gotten from athletes, from training partners just saying “Wow, thank you for your help in the journey” and those mean so much to me. I’ve read them multiple times. I’ll, you know, keep them forever. So those people on the receiving end of that are just loving the opportunity to be a part of that journey and that recognition does mean a lot to them as well. Andrew: Coach John Mayfield, triathlon training tip #6. John: Keep it fun. You know I think… Andrew: Yes. John: …this is something that is critical because this is, for the vast majority of us, this is a hobby. This is something we do for an outlet. This is something we do to challenge ourselves, to better ourselves. You know, it would be hard if for most of us if we never did triathlon again, but we don’t necessarily have to do triathlon again so it’s important that we keep it fun, that we keep it enjoyable, that everything is in it’s place. So there are times when it’s absolutely appropriate to really buckle down, to focus on training, but then there’s also opportunities even within that to really enjoy it, find the fun in it, make those connections. I think that’s pretty well known. My favorite part of both participating as an athlete and a coach are the relationships that I’ve built throughout it. There are few things I enjoy doing more than just really working hard next to one of my training partners and just having that connection and we’re working so hard that we can’t talk. So there’s not a lot of conversation going on, but it’s just that shared experience. Same thing on race day. You know, if you’ve ever shared a few miles with somebody out on the race course when you’re both out there struggling there’s not a whole lot of conversation. I think back on races and I don’t even know these people’s names, but man we’re bonded through that. So you know, do the fun things. Do the things you enjoy, but even in those times where you’re really buckled down and working really hard do what you can to make it fun and make it enjoyable and that’s also going to be huge in making it sustainable. So that’s going to be what keeps you coming back time after time. So do what you have to do to make sure that you’re really enjoying it. Andrew: I’m going to take triathlon training tip #7. This is another thing that I have become passionate about particularly as I’ve become a part of the triathlon industry as a podcaster and I’ve traveled to a lot of races now and been in a lot of athlete villages and met a lot of athletes. I would just encourage everybody– tip #7 is to support the multisport industry. Races can’t keep happening unless you sign up for races and go and race them, particularly your local races. I mean, support your local sprints. Support your local Olympics. Even if you’re the kind of guy or gal that just loves doing the big time events, throw a sprint in there every so often just so you can support your local triathlon scene. Don’t float around from ambassador group to ambassador group trying to collect freebies and massive discounts. Don’t Amazon everything for the cheapest humanly possible price. I mean there’s times you have to be practical with your budget, but as much as you’re able give business to that local bike shop. Give business to that local running store. Give business to the vendors in athlete village that are there trying to educate you on the top of the line products in the industry. If there’s a product that you come across and you just become a huge fan whether it’s your favorite nutrition product or that new saddle you got that changed your life and changed the quality of life for your butt– whatever it is that you really become a fan of share those things on social media with your other triathlon followers. Tag those companies in posts. That kind of feedback means a lot to them. That call to attention means a lot to them. Kind of like we said before, follow some of the pros. Give them some love by subscribing to their YouTube shows. I mean, give us some love by subscribing to the podcast and leaving us a good rating and review. All those things just really help support the multisport industry. We do this because we love this, but everybody in the triathlon space, it is a business and you have to survive to pay the bills to keep doing what we’re doing. So do what you can, when you can, to do everything you can to support the industry. John: I’m totally with you there Andrew. I’ve got a great relationship with the guy at my bike shop and I– sometimes he wants to give me discounts and I’m like, “man, I’m more than happy to pay. I want you to make money. This is your business. I understand how this works.” Andrew: Yeah. John: Just the fact that we have this relationship that I can call in favors, I would say that’s worth more than any discount. If I know I can roll up, if I’ve got something little that my bike needs a small adjustment or something like that, the fact that I can roll in there and say, “Hey Phillip, I need you to take five minutes and fix it.” I know he’s going to do it. He’s going to provide great service; great service to everyone I send to him. I have 100% confidence in that and you know, going back to my bike, one thing that’s really cool is the bike that I just got, it is one of the first in the US. So my guy came through for me and returned the favor. Andrew: Yeah. John: So, you know, it works both ways. So go and establish those relationships and take care of the folks that take care of you. Andrew: Triathlon training tip #8, Elizabeth James. Elizabeth: Alright, #8 is don’t neglect or skimp on your recovery and this has been something that has been a difficult thing for me in the past so I’m happy to have this one to kind of talk about and make sure that we bring it up here. Again, here we are at the beginning of a new year, maybe this is something that you can be focused on. I mean, I’ll say it here first. One of my goals for 2022 is to be very focused on sleep. So when we’re talking about recovery we’re talking about nutrition, we’re talking about functional movement. I mean, B.J. has talked about that on a couple podcast episodes before. We’re talking about sleep. Your training is only as good as what you can recover from. Andrew: Wow. Elizabeth: So you’re not going to perform well on a few hours of sleep. You’re not going to perform well on a fast food diet. The things that you do outside of your training sessions should support your goals and what you want to do inside those training sessions. So this is a really big, important one and as I said this is something that I’ve struggled with before and I’m making this a big priority for me in this next year. Andrew: I remember Elizabeth, when I think I was a high schooler and there was a television commercial for a protein drink company called EAS. I haven’t seen their products on the shelves in probably ten years, but back in the day it was a white and purple bottle. I can still picture it in my head and they had a commercial where you would see different scenes of people working out and at the end of them working out they would grab their EAS protein drink, they would pound it and they would put the bottle down and they would say, “Now I’m done!” And athlete after athlete after athlete finishing their workout and saying, “Now I’m done!” It really like for the first time clicked with me that, “oh.” You can go work out and that’s well and fine, but you’re not really done until you’ve done what you need to do to give your muscles that protein to recover. So here the argument is you’re not done after you take a protein drink. You’re done after you go to sleep and allow your muscles to rebuild themselves and then get up the next morning for your next workout. Really we should be waking up in the morning, sitting up in our beds and saying, “Now I’m done!” because that’s when you’ve actually made the gains at that point, right? Elizabeth: There we go. I’m going to think of that tomorrow morning as I’m getting out of bed. “Now I’m done with yesterday’s training.” Andrew: Alright, Coach John Mayfield, what is triathlon training tip #9? John: Make investments in training quality as you are able. So set yourself up for success in the training that you’re doing. This does require a certain amount of investment and you can start small and go from there. So it really, kind of as you mentioned before, we don’t want to encourage anybody to do anything that they shouldn’t, but as you are able I think one of the things that really starts at a basic level is a really good triathlon specific watch. So something that you can track your heart rate, your pace, all those metrics that are necessary to track your swim, bike, and run sessions. Then we’ve talked about it before numerous times, a power meter is invaluable in your training. So adding that to your bike as you are able to. Same thing with run power especially if you are using a treadmill or in an area where you don’t have flat routes. So that run power meter is really going to increase the quality of your execution. Again when you’re running in the undulating hills or whether on a treadmill. Another thing that’s really cheap that can really make a big difference in your swim are swim bands. So doing those dry land workouts can make a big difference in your swim whether you have access to a pool or not. We demonstrated back in 2020 when very few people had access to pools just how valuable that was. We had a tremendous amount of people that were going and doing band work several times a week and when they returned to the pool most folks six months or more later had almost no loss of threshold speed on the swim because of that work that they were doing. Some folks actually got faster because it really reinforces proper technique. It helps with strength development, movement, all those things that are so critical in swimming. Then you know some of the higher end things like a smart trainer. Those are great for improving the execution of your training especially if you’re exporting your sessions and using ERG mode. You know you’re going to do exactly what is prescribed for you on that day and that’s kind of the same thing with the treadmill. Very controlled environment so you don’t have to worry about intersections or dogs or potholes or anything like that. You can just go and you can do that session as prescribed regardless of what’s happening outdoors. So you can really set yourself up for success and really improve the quality of your training execution with a couple of these cool toys. Andrew: Yep, absolutely. You can totally be a triathlete and you can totally train for this sport with just a phone and a heart rate monitor or just a basic entry level watch, but like John said, as you’re able the more you can one by one by one add some of these items it just raises the quality of your training data and the quality of your ability to nail your sessions. So great stuff there John. Right there we were talking about making investments in the training quality and triathlon training tip #10 is to make investments in your training comfort. I’m a big fan of investing in good running clothes; good running shorts, good running shirts, getting rid of the cotton. I’m a big fan of investing in good running shoes, finding what is that model of speed work shoes, that long run shoe, that race day shoe that really just fits you well and interacts with your foot well and then invest in those models of running shoes. I’m a big fan of just well fitting, moisture wicking socks. Making sure your feet are staying dry and happy for everything we put our feet through. Making sure no matter what the weather is outside; whether it’s hot, whether it’s cold, investing in the right layers to make sure when you head out the front door you’re going to be comfortable as you’re knocking out that workout. Investing in good bike shorts. Some people prefer a thicker chamois. Some people prefer a thinner, more kind of triesque chamois. Learn what you like and then invest in a couple of good pairs of bike shorts. Spend some time if you have to, spend a little money if you have to to “date” several saddles. Getting the right bike saddle underneath your butt is crucial to your comfort on indoor and outdoor training rides. For me, I probably dated a dozen or so saddles before finding the one that I wanted to marry. That is a Dash Saddle. I absolutely love my saddle, but I went through several different models before I figured out that was the one for me. What I did basically was I would order a saddle, I would try it on the trainer for about two weeks or so to see how I liked it, well within the return window of the saddle. If it didn’t work for me I would either return it or sell it on Ebay to somebody else to try, but in that way for about a year or so in the sport I was rotating what saddle I was on until I found the one that I was really happy with and my butt has thanked me profusely for it. Then the final one I’ll say is in your pain cave whether you’re doing strength work, whether you’re on a treadmill, whether you’re on a trainer, get some good fans. Get something that’s going to get the air moving around you. Get something next to you that’s going to hold your water bottles and your nutrition and just really make some investments to make those workouts more comfortable. Elizabeth: I’m going to jump in and add just one more for the women out there. Andrew: Please do. Elizabeth: I mean invest in a good sports bra as well. It took me a while to find one that would work well with my chest strap for my heart rate monitor. I mean I used to get a big like almost scar from how my sports bra would rub against the heart rate chest monitor and just basically leave a cut. So you know, find a sports bra that’s going to be supportive, that’s especially important for the run, and one that’s going to be compatible with your heart rate monitor just so that you’re training in comfort there as well. Andrew: Yep, great add there Elizabeth and not one that I would have thought of. So that’s why you’re on the show, right there. Elizabeth: The woman’s perspective here. Andrew: You’re on the show for way more reasons than just that. Elizabeth: Oh, okay. Good. Andrew: I don’t want to minimize your contributions. Just joking. Just joking around. Elizabeth, why don’t you contribute some more by giving us triathlon training tip #11. Elizabeth: Alright, so #11. We’ve touched on this a little bit as John was making sure that we’re having fun and including some sessions with others. Tip #11 is to do your triathlon training with others. Andrew: Absolutely. Elizabeth: Find a local tri club. Find some other athletes in the area. Be active with TriDot groups that we have, the events that we have at the races. Kind of in the group that I train with we joke all the time that this is for fun and fitness, but it truly is. There are times where it is very fun focused and we’re going to go out and have a ride to one of the coffee shops and sit there and catch up on how everything went over the holidays and there are other times when we are very focused on the fitness aspect of it where we will meet at the pool and probably not say a word for the next 90 minutes as we’re all gasping at the wall for breath. Andrew: Yep. Elizabeth: But you know, a smile here and there and just knowing somebody else is there next to you also working hard, it’s just fantastic. I’ve always found that training with others can help keep you more accountable and just kind of help you stay on track for your goals. Even if you’re only meeting a group for your weekly Saturday ride, that’s going to help you be more accountable to your training during the week as well. You’re going to want to get in those other sessions so that you’re not the one who’s holding up the Saturday group ride. Then you’re going to be there on Saturday because that’s where your buddies are too. I also think this just allows for great community and gets you meeting other people who can offer advice and encouragement and that adds a lot of fun to the sport as well. Andrew: Yeah and then being a part of a group on race day and having other people out there in those TriDot kits or having people out there in the same tri club kit as yourself just really even adds a whole nother dimension to the race experience. Coach John Mayfield, what is triathlon training tip #12? John: 12 will dovetail nicely in with what Elizabeth just said. It’s maintaining a healthy tri/life balance. So really doing what she just mentioned and incorporating others into it is a great way of doing this, but so many times we get so focused on what we’re doing, what our objectives are, what our goals are that sometimes it gets out of whack and not only do other things suffer, but even your triathlon performance can suffer because of that. So maintaining that healthy relationship with triathlon is critical to being successful in triathlon. You can absolutely overdo it and not only do things like family and work and friends and other important aspects of your life suffer. Your triathlon performance is going to suffer as well. So we want to be careful to avoid burnout. That’s something that we see fairly common in the space is athletes will go so hard either in one particular season headed into one race or they’ll go super hard for a couple years and then they’re just done. Their bodies are exhausted. Their adrenal systems are exhausted and they just don’t enjoy it anymore and then they lose out on this tremendous thing that we have. And too, it’s going to eb and flow. So there are certainly times where it is important to be consistent in training. There may be times where you need to prepare to be a little bit absent from some things, but make sure that as those ebs come that it flows as well. As race day approaches you’re going to be busy. Especially those long course races. There’s going to be higher volume weeks where you’re going to be training a lot. So when that race comes and goes it’s important to offset some of that time to an extent. So make sure that honey-do list gets addressed and maybe you’re taking a little bit of extra time to spend with loved ones and friends and that sort of thing. So just be mindful of that and don’t be so hyper focused that you lose focus on other things. Andrew: John, I think I’ve heard you say this stat before. What is the average kind of lifespan for the typical triathlete? How long is your normal triathlete in the sport before they wind up just exiting oftentimes because of burnout? John: It’s often three to five years. Andrew: Wow. John: So I’ve been fortunate to now be more than double that and I still love what I do and I really think that being able to do this– and I’ve talked about it before where early on I did not do good at this. Where I fell prey to that. I was so focused, I was so driven that regrettably I missed out on things that I shouldn’t have missed out on. I’m really glad that I do a better job of it now, I’ve learned from that, and that’s one thing I’m really passionate about sharing with the athletes that I coach, with podcast listeners, all that is to ensure that they don’t make those mistakes that I did. Because it is. It’s a lifestyle and it very quickly becomes that for many of us. So it’s important to do. Andrew: TriDot podcast episode #86 was John Mayfield and Jeff Raines talking really a lot more about this. It’s called Work, Family, and Fitness: Balancing Life with Tri Training. Definitely a great one to go listen to and it was one of our Best of 2021 nominated episodes. Moving along to triathlon training tip #13. Elizabeth James, what is it? Elizabeth: It is to be prepared with the gear that you need for your session and then to have backups as well. So a couple different things that I want to talk about here. This one maybe seems kind of like an obvious tip, but set your gear out the night before and it’s probably of no surprise to some of our longer podcast listeners that I have a list for this. I’ve got my list for what do I need for an indoor run session? What do I need for an outdoor run session? What do I need for a bike trainer session? So the night before I’m laying all of that out, getting it ready and I mean some of those things on the list are obvious like okay yeah, if I’m going for an outdoor ride obviously I’m going to need my bike helmet. But then I also have things on that list like, okay is my DI2 charged making sure that I’m not going to get out for a ride and run out of battery for shifting. So it’s just kind of that little checklist of alright in the morning, this is the training session that I’m going to do. I’m going to make sure the night before I’m all prepared and that way it saves me so much time. It gets rid of the excuses of “oh I ran out of time trying to get things ready.” So as much as I can prepare the night before I’m setting myself up for success with that training session with just the preparation part of it. A couple other things that kind of help and go along with that. In my swim bag I always have two pairs of goggles and this came from one of the first years that I was in triathlon. I got to the pool, went to put my goggles on, and the strap just snapped. I tried to tie it back together, couldn’t get it, missed out on the swim session that day, and ever since I have carried two pairs of goggles in my swim bag. I’ve needed it a time or two before and then other times a training partner of mine has needed it. So just kind of those little self insurance things to make sure that I can get in a session. I mean it’s kind of the same thing. I keep a whole bunch of extra training gear in the car. So I’ve got a variety of layers in there just as we were talking about different sessions and the weather. I’ve got wind vest, hat, gloves. I’ve got an extra pair of running shoes. I’ve always got an extra swimsuit so if there’s an opportunity to train I have the gear in my car ready to go. So you can count me in. Then other things to be prepared with or just other little tidbits– here’s my woman’s perspective again. I suppose this could apply to men too, but put your makeup remover in your swim bag because your mascara is cruel to that anti fog on the inside of your goggles. Andrew: Did not know that. Elizabeth: Yes. So take your makeup off. Don’t let the mascara ruin that anti fog on the inside of your goggles. Then like before you go out on a bike ride do a pre-ride safety check. Really just make sure that you set yourself up with your gear to be ready for the session to get it in. Andrew: There were a couple of occasions, Elizabeth, as you were talking I was reminded of. This is a story I’ve never shared on the podcast. I don’t think anybody outside of my wife ever knew this, but before I was on staff with Predictive Fitness doing the TriDot podcast I worked for a television network in the Dallas area and I would do my swim sessions in the morning before heading into the studio and I would throw my swimsuit on before leaving the house and on several occasions I got out of the pool at the Grapevine Rec Center and got into the locker room only to realize I had not packed a pair of underwear in my work clothes bag. Elizabeth you talked about how many things you carry in your car to make sure you’re ready for a workout opportunity. For folks on the back end of their workout opportunity I used to actually carry a pair of boxer briefs in the glove compartment of my car for those days when I inevitably would forget to pack a pair of underwear and yeah. So you know what? There’s plenty of things we can have ready in our cars for both the front side and back side of our workouts. I will move us on to triathlon training tip #14 and it is be weather aware. We had a whole podcast about this just different ways to train and race in adverse weather. We’ve talked about how to dress and prepare for hot training days, for cold training days so I won’t talk too much here, but just be aware of what the weather is outside. I usually at the beginning of the week I’ll fire up the weather app and just kind of get a sense of which days might be extra hot, which days might be a little stormy, and just kind of know in the back of my head which days I might have to alter my training plans accordingly and then I’ll keep an eye on it throughout the week. As the temperatures go up and down just dress in the appropriate layers. A pro tip that Elizabeth James actually gave to me is to use a Ziplock bag for your phone whether you’re riding or whether you’re running. Not only will it keep the rain off of your phone on rainy, foggy days, but it will keep the sweat off your phone on those days where it’s in a pocket and you’re getting extra sweaty. So phone in the Ziplock bag if you’re carrying your phone on a workout is a great pro tip. Recognize when the session could be better executed indoors. For me in Texas a lot of times this is those days where it’s just 100 degrees outside and there’s no way going outside for a run is going to be effective. I know to either do a treadmill run in the pain cave or do a treadmill run at the gym. So know wherever you live, whatever the weather is like for you there will be days where it’s just, you’re going to have a more effective training session if you keep it indoors and then just be aware of the temperatures and what the sun is going to do. Based on the temperatures, what amount of hydration will you need. Do you need to carry that hydration on you, can you stash it somewhere and do some loops? Know whether or not you’re going to benefit or not from sunscreen or sun sleeves and then just kind of plan your route according to the weather. Do you need to go for a route that has more shade? Should your route keep you closer to home just in case the weather continues to deteriorate? Just be mindful of the route you’re choosing to take on in those outdoor training sessions based on what the weather is doing. So I’m a big fan. Keep yourself safe. Make sure you execute your training well by being aware of the weather. Elizabeth: I love that you talked about, you know, recognize when the session could be better executed indoors. I was just talking to my athlete, Nicole and she lives much further north than we do here and she is experiencing temperatures that are below zero. She’s got all the little like spikes that she can put on the bottom of her shoes for better traction in the snow. Andrew: Crazy. Elizabeth: And we were looking at the weather for next week and it’s like “Nicole, we’ve got to do these inside”, and she was like, “yeah I agree.” It’s not going to be effective if I go outside. It’s also going to be dangerous because it’s going to be pretty icy and so, yeah. I mean wherever you are there’s a point where you will maybe get a better session if you just take it indoors not only from the execution standpoint, but also from a safety perspective. Andrew: Can you imagine MAV shuttles on ice? Elizabeth: Oh my gosh. It would be like slip ‘n slide. Andrew: Coach Elizabeth James, what is triathlon training tip #15? Elizabeth: #15 is train your mind. Gosh another one that I just love here. Mental factors such as confidence, focus, self belief, and motivation are absolutely critical to athletic performance and I guess without giving too much away here we’ve actually been talking to somebody that we want to host on the show in 2022 about mental skills. So I mean, I don’t know that we’ll dive in a whole lot more here today and just know that we’re going to keep the episodes coming and be on the lookout for that one this year. But yeah, training the mental aspect of the sport is also important. So we do a lot of physical training, but making sure that we’ve got our mind and our focus and our confidence where they need to be so that we can conquer some of those tough training sessions and be ready to have our best performance on race day is important as well. John: We’ve talked about it before. This is something that is developed over time and this is really something that the assessments that we do… Andrew: Yeah. John: …on an ongoing basis can really be beneficial in. Learn what it is to push and hurt. Learn what you’re capable of. Learn what it feels like to be at your max heart rate. Find out what your max heart rate is and then get comfortable being uncomfortable there. Go and let it challenge you and that’s huge. That’s a huge skill in racing is really having that ability to push and hurt and go there to that dig deep spot. Andrew: Coach John Mayfield, why don’t you dig a little deeper and bring us to triathlon training tip #16? John: Pay attention to your nutrition. So I think something that’s really beneficial and advantageous is tracking nutrition. I think this is great on a day-to-day basis, but also in the sessions that we’re doing. We’ve talked about it numerous times that especially your long sessions are great opportunities to dial in your nutrition protocol and know what is going to work for you. That is probably one of the most common mistakes especially in long course racing where you have to fuel throughout the race that we see made is people will have GI issues, they will under fuel, under hydrate and your potential is greatly diminished when you reach that state. So really pay attention to your nutrition. Have it dialed in. Have a well thought out, well vetted plan and then also your hydration and electrolytes. Go back to our friends at Precision Hydration. They offer some fantastic online tools that can help dial that in. They also offer free consultations that I recommend to everyone. I found it very beneficial in my training, in my racing, and grateful for that and would recommend that. Also things like utilizing a clear bottle to see how much you’re taking in. That’s going to help keep you accountable to that protocol that you’ve got dialed in and tested. I use a timer on my bike computer. I’ve got it set for every 15 minutes a notification pops up reminding me to drink. So things like that that can really help nail that nutrition which we know is absolutely critical in realizing your potential on race day. Andrew: Alright into the seventh inning stretch here with triathlon training tip #17. Elizabeth James, what is it? Elizabeth: 17 is add strength training to support those swim, bike, and run muscles. Just quickly touching on this one. We know that strength training is important, but as our coach and physical therapist, performance science director B.J. would tell us, we’ve got to be a sniper. We’ve got to make sure that we’re really looking at those areas for personal improvement and taking care of where our body is weak. For a lot of triathletes that’s going to be your glutes, that’s going to be your core. So strengthen those glutes. Strengthen that core and then keep those muscles stretched, rolled, loose. Make sure that they are in a good range of motion to support the movements that we do in the disciplines. Andrew: Dr. B.J. Leeper doesn’t know it yet, but I plan on having him on the show to do an episode similar to this where we just count down all of B.J.’s favorite strength training recommendations and strength training tips so we can really tap into his knowledge there because it is so helpful to supplement your swim, bike, and run training with some strength training. This has been a big focus for me already in the off season. It’s going to continue to be here in the winter time in the states as we gear up for the next race season. I’m working diligently on my lower back and core and trying to get some more flexibility in my shoulders and upper body. So great tip there Elizabeth. John: So when those are done, now you’re done. Andrew: Now I’m done! John Mayfield, what is triathlon training tip #18? John: Practice race day skills and there are a lot of these. So we obviously spend a whole lot of time preparing from a fitness aspect for race day. We do a whole lot of swimming, cycling, and running to improve our fitness, but execution is so critical on race day and there are a lot of things that we encounter on race day that we may or may not experience throughout our training so it’s important to make sure that we’re dialing these in and maintaining them throughout the year as well. So things like practicing your transition. You want to be efficient. You want to be quick. No wasted movements. No wasted time and then something that can really make a difference is developing the ability to do either a flying mount and/or flying dismount. So this is a great time of year to work on that. Obviously be safe. Maybe start on the trainer and then move to a grassy area before doing that out on the road, but that can make up significant amount of time especially in the short course races where races are often won and lost by a couple seconds that can make that difference. Master the swim start. So we have several different types of swim starts and you want to make sure you know what you’re going to experience on race day and then make sure you’re comfortable and you can properly execute that. Andrew: Yeah. John: So there are– we don’t really have the mass starts anymore. That was an interesting thing from a bygone era, but we still have wave starts where it’s largely like that. There’s enough folks around you that there might as well be 1000. If you’re surrounded by 20, you might as well be surrounded by 1000. So be comfortable in that and know how to navigate that, where you’re going to line up in those whether it be a left side, right side of that pack. That’s going to depend on how the course is laid out, where the buoys are and that sort of thing. Time trial starts are a little bit different. So know exactly what it is going in and make sure that you’re proficient with that. Sighting on the swim is huge. There’s nothing that wastes a whole lot of very productive, great swim training than swimming crooked. You can easily add 10-20% to the distance of that swim by swimming not straight. So the closer you can hug those buoys and know that you’re swimming that minimum distance, that’s going to be a great way to truly maximize your swim. Then things like bike handling. Triathletes are probably justifiably notorious for lacking bike handling skills and probably one of the most, and honestly my weakness, I am not great with U-turns. Tri bikes are just not as nimble as road bikes so it does take a little bit more effort, but I’ve been on plenty of race courses that you have to do a U-turn on a two lane road... Andrew: Absolutely. John: …and if you’re having to really slow down, having to perhaps unclip that inside pedal which I’ve done– I’ve done even recently. You know that’s missed opportunity. So just having those kind of skills dialed in. Same thing with like being able to maintain the aero position for a long period of time. There are several factors that go into this; one is just practice, being comfortable and confident, but then also having a good bike fit that is going to allow you to remain aero and then developing the musculature to do that as well. So it’s going to have some fatigue in the shoulders and neck for a certain period of time, but building that up so you that can remain aero so that you can stay fast. Be proficient in taking in water as well as nutrition, things like gels or solid foods or anything else like that on the bike and run. We’ve talked about how critical race nutrition is. So you want to be proficient in that and doing what you’re going to do during the race. I’m often guilty of that– doing something a little bit different, a little easier in training than what I do in racing and I don’t always have to do it, but maybe instead of that Saturday ride sitting up and eating that bar, taking two or three minutes out of the aero position to eat that bar, do it like you’re going to do it on race day. Andrew: Yeah that’s great. John: Maybe not every time, but just enough to stay proficient in that. Same thing with even like– one thing I do is I carry bottles. I have my primary bottle is between my aero bars. I have up to two bottles behind me as back up and sometimes I’ll just sit up and leisurely swap out my bottles, but I don’t do that in the race so I want to make sure that I’m staying proficient in doing that. So all those things that we do during the race, we want to make sure that we’re staying proficient with those. Then one that just kind of blows my mind, I hear this way more often than I would like to. I arrived at a race site and I hear people talking about the fact that they really hope they don’t get a flat because they don’t know how to change a tire. And you know, that’s just negligent. You should know how to change a tire. Go to your local bike shop. Local bike shops are great about taking the time to educate cyclists on that. If you don’t have a local bike shop, there’s plenty of YouTube videos that you can do it and then practice it. You know, it takes a little bit of thumb strength oftentimes to get those tires on and off of the wheel. So just be prepared and be proficient in all those things that you could experience on race day. Andrew: We have plenty of training sessions day-to-day anyway and so while we’re doing the training sessions, while we’re knocking out the intervals and strengthening our body for the next go around for that upcoming race, why not take the opportunity to practice some of these race day skills along the way. That’s great John. Pro triathlete and TriDot Coach, Elizabeth James, would you close out our main set today with triathlon training tip #19. Elizabeth: Absolutely. I’d be happy to bring it home for us here especially with this one. This is a great one to end on. So tip #19, when the workout gets tough, get excited. You know, when it gets tough, this is where the gains are so lean into those tough moments with confidence. Know that those are the moments that are growing you the most and are really going to be things that you can draw back on come race day. So when it gets tough, get excited. Cool down theme: Great set everyone! Let’s cool down. Andrew: A little earlier on the show Elizabeth told us about the current edition of the Preseason Project. Elizabeth and I both came to TriDot as athletes through this research initiative so we especially love seeing other athletes jump on board as participants. Now a great experience with the Preseason Project is not unique to just Elizabeth and myself. Often when I meet TriDot athletes at the races I ask them how they found TriDot and they respond by saying they started training with TriDot the same way Elizabeth and I did years and years ago. Already athletes are joining this year’s edition and have joined the I AM TriDot Facebook group and are in the midst of their two free months of triathlon training. We received some excellent feedback from a brand new Preseason Project athlete named Tom Watkins from Tulsa, Oklahoma. Tom is a member of the Tulsa Area Triathletes so I’m excited to meet Tom in person when Ironman Tulsa rolls around. Here is what Tom had to say about his currently ongoing experience with TriDot’s Preseason Project. Tom Watkins: Hey Andrew! Thank you so much for the invite to be part of the triathlon podcast this week. It’s just– what an incredible opportunity to share a bit about my triathlon journey and specifically how TriDot has completely changed everything for me and just how awesome it has been. You know, for those of the listeners who don’t know me I’m just an age grouper. I’m a normal triathlete at this time. I’m borderline obsessed with triathlon, but at this point that’s what it is. I race with my local tri club, Tulsa Area Triathletes, here in Tulsa, Oklahoma. That’s who I am so that kind of paints that picture. I came into triathlon several years ago from a competitive swimming background and then I latched onto cycling and running fairly quickly. I’ve done lots of types of races from Spartan Races to sprint triathlons to even up to half Ironman. That being said, I’m fairly well versed in what training for multiple distances looks like and have tried a lot of styles and programs of training over the years and just nothing has really seemed to stick. I’ve got fairly lofty goals in triathlon. I want to race the national championships next fall. Possibly go elite shortly after and how cool would it be to race with the pros within the next couple of years. I’ve mainly self-trained in the past and have done decently well with that. But ever since I decided to take triathlon seriously I frequently podium in my age group and finish amongst the top racers, but I’ve decided that I want to make podiums not just in my age group, but overall and I’m confident that TriDot not only can, but will get me there. I started with the Preseason Project back in November, at the beginning of November, and I have had tremendous success being part of the Preseason Project. I came in as a strong swimmer, but I’ve even seen improvements in my swimming. Just in the first two months my 500 yard average has dropped 45 seconds. My bike speed has gone up 2 miles per hour on average roughly; 1, 1-½, to 2 miles per hour average. Lastly and most importantly before TriDot I hated running. I hated– It was my mortal enemy. I hated running. It always hurt. I was slow. I lost positions on the run. But now, now I look forward to my runs. I rarely have any pain. My ankles don’t hurt. My knees don’t hurt. My hips don’t hurt. I’m running– actually I’m running a lot faster. Two months ago I averaged between like 8:30 - 9:00 minute miles during training and now my average is like 7:00 to 7:30 minutes so frequently. It is easy for me to run a 7:30 minute mile now thanks to TriDot. Thanks to the different types of drills that you guys have me doing. My goal was to run a 42 minute 10K in April and now I’m confident I’m going to hit that goal. I love TriDot because it feels like a program for triathlon training that’s actually designed by people who understand what triathletes need. Before it seemed like it was a swim planned by swimmers, a run play by runners, and etcetera. But now it all flows together and makes sense and the distances are achievable and everything complements each other. Before TriDot, going elite was an ambitious dream. Now it’s possible and that gets me super excited. So thank you so much for TriDot and working so hard to make something that truly is different. Andrew: That’s it for today folks. I want to thank coaches John Mayfield and Elizabeth James for walking us through our 19 triathlon training tips that we had today. Shoutout to TriTATS for partnering with us on today’s episode. Head to TriTats.com and use the code TRIDOT for 10% off your order. Enjoying the podcast? Have any triathlon questions or topics you want to hear us talk about? Head to tridot.com/podcast to let us know what you’re thinking. We’ll do it all again soon. Until then, Happy Training! Outro: Thanks for joining us. Make sure to subscribe and share the TriDot podcast with your triathlon crew. For more great tri content and community, connect with us on Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram. Ready to optimize your training? Head to TriDot.com and start your free trial today! TriDot – the obvious and automatic choice for triathlon training.