Bike for Show, Run for Dough!

Bike for Show, Run for Dough!

A superb come from behind win for Lisa Roberts in Cozumel. Photo Credit 

Lisa Roberts continued her amazing season capturing her 3rd Ironman title in Cozumel. This fall Lisa has been on fire nabbing a title in September, October, and now November. Lisa executed a smart swim and bike that left her with some work to do on the run. But as the others faded, Lisa hunted them down like a patient assassin. Lisa battled her way to lead by the final lap of the run and never looked back taking the win in record time. Lisa put a cherry on top of her stellar season and her Trisutto coaches are proud of her amazing success.

Race Recap from Coach Edith Niederfriniger:


A good run by Johnnie in Bahrain.

Saturday I had Jonathan Ciavattella racing 70.3 Bahrain. We just wanted to see at which point we are and what better to do that than racing against a world class field! Johnnie placed 19. ProM in 4:05.24, after a good swim in middle of the first pack, he tried to keep up with the strong cyclists around, but we are not there yet, power lacking! The run effort was good! So now we have a lot of time (and work) ahead to get this sorted. Both very motivated for the new season. Bring it on!!

Race Recap from Coach Mirjam Weerd:


Rahel takes on the big hitters in Bahrain!

Rahel Bellinga raced the 70.3 Bahrain in the pro category. After a crash this summer left her with a few broken ribs she knew time was too short to have a great race while facing the best of the triworld battling it out. When the racelegs seemed to have been stranded somewhere between loosing the bike and sleepless in Bahrain city the days leading up to the race, being painfree and racing without issues was the biggest achievement of the day. Rahel now has gotten rid of the the jitters and can have the patience to work on a solid built up to do an Ironman or Challenge somewhere next year! Well done Rahel, from here we built further! Every stone is one to work with.


Overcoming the heat and humidity in Cozumel, well done Cecile!

Cecile Amstad raced at Ironman Cozumel last weekend. She loves to race in hot conditions and that is what she got! Even though the current helped her with a superfast 55 minute swim her almost 20 minutes pb showed a big step forward even if there hadnt been a current. On the bike Cecile was able to push well without actually getting tired. Another pb there! The run was a slightly different story with a tight calf cramping up. But on a supertough hot day in a marathon that wasnt too short she was only 2 minutes slower then her previous ironman. Overall a great permformance finishing in a new pb of 10.44 hours Cecile showed that with consistent training and hard work you can become a better athlete! Well done Cecile and congrats on a great race!

Race Recap from Coach Cali Amaral:


Congratulations Patty, a great win at 70.3 Fortaleza. Photo Credit: Talita Saab

Patricia got her third 70.3 title in the year and great performance to finish the year with gold key. The race begins with a very hard swim course with a lot of waves It’s followed by a single loop bike with a very dangerous course too.The run course follows the palm tree-lined streets of Fortaleza, offering breathtaking seaside views. However athletes had a harder tipical sun from north of Brazil. She is very exiciting with her great 2017 improviment and start looking forward 2018.

Race Recap from Coach Melanie Mitchell:

Laura wins her AG and earns herself a Kona Qualification – Congratulations!

Age group athlete Laura Nadeau, absolute legend and amazing mum of 2 competed and won 30-34 age category 70.3 Phuket Ironman 70.3 this weekend. After Laura’s confidence building 70.3 World championships result, she was KEEN to race again, on reflection of her worlds race Laura felt she could of pushed a little harder, and with such a confidence building result considering her short time in the sport (less then 12 months) Laura’s motivation went to a whole knew level as with her drive and commitment to the task ahead of her of improving her swim!
Going into Phuket 70.3 I had no doubt Laura was ready, she had done all the work I had asked of her and she was just fired up and ready to go. . this girl is a real racer, Being her coach I can strongly resonate with Laura as an athlete, as Sutto could attest to, Laura was like a cage fighter,  let me at em!!  There were a few text messages to tell her to race hard but controlled.
There was nothing sweeter then seeing her swim time on the athlete tracker, then see her hit the lead on the bike. It was a steep 22%  and technical bike course which made her nervous as it was wet which made for slippery roads. I gave the advice of, work the hills and take the down hill easy.  The run she was either going to set a new half marathon PB or blow up spectacularly. Either way it would be all in the learning process for her. When my athlete tracker dropped out at 8.2km and she had run through at 35mins my heart stopped for a minute and i thought, oh no LAURA!!!  When I picked it back up at 16km she was still holding 1st place and moving at a great pace. PHEW!
Laura finished with a PR and a new half marathon PB. 1.32…. Only a few weeks ago Laura ran a half marathon and did 1.34. Laura’s goal was to earn a Kona slot and she did it!  Well done Laura!!

Race Recap from Coach Rafal Medak:


A huge PB for David in Cozumel! Congratulations!

Congratulations to David on his fantastic performance in IM Cozumel – a PB by 52 min in a very hot race! Ironman Cozumel was David’s goal for the season. After a little break in early summer we build fitness with training and fitted other races around the main goal.
During the race David followed the plan and adjusted the strategy to race conditions and challenges that the day thrown at him.
David started with a great relaxed swim. The bike was very well paced even though he had to deal with a puncture. The run was set to be hot and testing. To David’s surprise he felt good and could keep a steady pace over the marathon while focusing on hydration and getting calories in. David was thrilled to finish with his massive PB (52 min).
It’s been a great season for David and we look forward to 2018 already while we think about goals. As David summarized in his race report below – exciting times ahead for David and the Coach! Very, very well done David!
“Thanks again for all your help and attention, I really value it and it’s amazing when everything comes together like this, especially in the last race of the season, so we can go into 2018 on a big high.”

Race Recap from Coach Brett Sutton:


Third place and Thai Champ this weekend for Nini at Phuket 70.3.

NIni Ruttanaporn continues to improve week-by-week and I couldn’t be prouder of the way she has progressed, coming to grips with a new training philosophy and racing outlook.

Shannon Benson had her first outing under the Trisutto colours at Bahrain 70.3, executing a great race from the get go. Very happy.

Race Recap from Coach Michelle Barnes:


Sub 10 and a PB for Ryan in Cozumel.

Ryan Wright lined up for Cozumel this weekend and I’m super proud of his effort.
Ryan is a busy emergency room doctor and it’s always a good challenge finding a way to give him enough training to have him ready for a good Ironman while getting enough recovery with the high demands of his job but he’s been doing awesome & the work showed on Sunday. Ryan exited the water in 46 min ,2nd in his category with one of the faster AG swims then went on to have his best bike to date, top 10 bike split in his category which is great considering this was Ryan’s weaker link. Regardless of a struggle on the run Ryan still came in 11th with a big PB and his first sub 10 performance! Far from a perfect race but we are certainly in the right direction and like all races, learned more on what worked and what didn’t. After a little break, I am very much  looking fwd to building off this fitness to see what Ryan is capable of!!!

Race Recap from Coach Harald Fritz:


Sebastian on his way to qualifing for the 70.3 World Champs.

Very proud of Sebastian Herzig and his race at the Bahrain Ironman 70.3 race! Altough only working together for a short time he trusted me and we applied basic trisutto methodology. Additionally he was willing to take a risk by trying new things. With an impressive 2:26 Bike he layed the foundation for his slot for the Ironman 70.3 World Championships in South Africa!

Race Recap from Coach Vassilis Krommidas:


Great job team! Wouter, Wendy and Andreas in Phuket!

Wendy Casterton qualified for S.Africa World Championship 70.3 at Thailand’s 70.3. She won the 4th place in her category despite the accident it had in cycling due to slipperiness of the road. Something that cost her valuable time but was able to keep her concentration after the accident and keep her performance winning the slot for the W.C.!
Andreas Goros he was compete in same race despite his busy schedule, he stand at the start line making another good race enjoining the crowd and himself. With 5:09, finishing in 18th place in his category.
The third teammate athlete was Wouter Delbaere, where with 4:52 won the 21st place in his category!
Well done to all three!

Race Recap from Coach Christian Nitschke:


Backing up this weekend with a 70.3, well done Martin.

Martin Kasten raced his last race oft a long season in Thailand last Sunday. His season started with Challenge Lisboa in the beginning of may and he finished it strong after 4hrs52min at 70.3 Phuket. He backed up a podium finish at Laguna Phuket Triathlon last weekend with a 14th place in the 40-45 age group. Very even performances in all three disciplines lead to a very good overall result. Not even a blocked reak break could stop him on the last 10km of the bikeride ;-). Martin will enjoy his very well deserved season break now!


Great work Deb – racing Superleague style!

Deborah Bomstein did a very special race format in Hatta near Dubai last Friday. The race started with a 3,4km run with a very steep climb of 20% at the end to a water reservoir where the 1500m swim took place. It was Deborahs first swim in fresh water and she managed it well even without the additional buoyance of the saltwater or wetsuit. After the swim followed another 6km run with 400m of elevation and a 30km bikeride with two steep 14% climbs. Deborah managed to get to the finish line after 3hrs14min in this special race and it was a great day of specific strength both on the bike and in the run.

Hardy Wiedemann did another 10km run last Sunday, the Donauwörth „Schlößlelauf“, and won his agegroup again. Three runs and three age group wins during the past four weeks. In addition his 10km club championships was carried out there and he was the first finisher of his tri club and won that as well. The 20s personal best on that specific course was just a bonus ;-).

Race Recap from Coach Jo Spindler:


A wonderful team effort by Jo’s athletes in Bahrain.

My athletes did a fantastic team performance IRONMAN 70.3 Bahrain! Carmen Grosse wins her AG with almost a 40min lead! Sabrina Stadelmann wins her AG with a 20min lead and get’s 2nd AG athlete overall! Mihai Vigariu backed up his 3rd place at IM Malaysia with another podium finish and Jenny Schulz had a fantastic “comeback” race after a lot of injuries and finishes 8th pro! Sandra Schöni adds another 4th place to her palmares with fast swim and bike splits! Outstanding efforts. Super proud coach.

Race Recap from Coach Carson Christen:


PB run for Cory!

Cory Giesselman took part in the Curacao 1/2 Marathon this past weekend as a final hit out before 70.3 Cartagena this weekend. The plan was to test fitness, but not absolute 100% effort that would dig a hole in recovery. Cory stuck to our race plan, and at the end of the race, set a new 1/2 marathon PB, and did a fine negative split! The past 2 months have been set on very consistent training, and Cory is seeing the benefits of consistency over huge workouts! Coach is ready to follow your first 1/2 Ironman this weekend!
Eddie Luna had an absolute ripper of a race at Ironman Cozumel this past weekend, posting a 2 hour 25min PB!!!! He swim 20min faster, bike 60min faster, and ran 55min faster than 2015! Coach knew this was going to happen, but there were a few points in training where Eddie questioned if he was doing enough, or if he’d be ready! We made a race plan, raced that plan, and the result came itself. He still went through some dark spots with a possible muscle strain out of the swim and the last 10-15k run problems, but he keep our pre-race talks in his head, and the rest is history! Congrats again, Eddie! Enjoy your season break!

Race Recap from Coach Susie Langley:


Hoppe, Hoppe!

Getting stronger week-by-week. A two stage TT event this weekend for Jane. Short sharp and fun!…great training!

Race Recap from Coach Robbie Haywood:


Using the winter run races to get faster, go Flora!

Winters coming in Switzerland and perfect viking conditions for Flora as she runs her way to another podium finish.

Congratulations to all athletes competing this weekend.

Trisutto.com online triathlon coaches are available to help improve your performance here...

Louisville and Hawaii Highlight

Louisville and Hawaii Highlight

Lisa Roberts is on a roll capturing her 2nd Ironman title in record time this weekend. Lisa bested the bike, run, and course records on her way to a dominating win. Lisa is having the season of her life and at Trisutto we are proud to be a small part of her success.


Phil heads out on the run in Kona.

Phil Whitehead had a stellar debut at the Ironman World Championships in 9:45 on a stinking hot day. Coming from the UK, Phil left it all out on the lava fields with a balanced swim, bike, and run. I have no doubt that Phil will be back in Kona and battling for the age group podium.

Race Recap from Coach Mirjam Weerd:


A fantastic race by Brent in Kona!

Brent Patteeuw from Belgium did a great job at the Ironman World Championships Hawaii. I could not be more proud of him for various reasons. Brent had to overcome some obstacles in raceweek with a mean shoulder and being hit by another car on race morning. But his mindset was in the right place as he took off to set a super good race. Our race strategy was simple: be patient and think about nutrition. He totally nailed this! His swim was better then we anticipated, the bike was good untill he got a mechanical which made him go to the side of the road to fix it. Brent unleashed the beast at the run where he started to wheel in many athletes. Starting of in 23rd position after the swim he eventually finished 6th in his agegroup 25-29 in a time of 9.21.51. Brent can be very proud of himself as are the ones close to him, I’m sure!

Race Recap from Coach Mateo Mercur:


Mike, at Hot Corner, on a clear course after a blazing swim.

Mike Hill and Paula Ponte both raced at the Ironman World Championships in Kona this past weekend. Both had an outstanding lead-up to the race with some time on island for their final race-prep sessions.
Mike got his day started with an aggressive swim, exiting the water 3rd in his group in a time of 51:50. Mike paced his effort according to plan, and despite a puncture, was able to complete the bike of the race in 5:14:34. Mike experienced the brutality of the Ironman Kona marathon and learned the lesson of perseverance in a whole new way. It took grit to get through this race for Mike, and he’ll be stronger for it. Now it’s time for some rest and relaxation. Soon enough we’ll be back at work, getting ready for another crack at Kona.


Paula, putting in an outstanding effort on the Queen K.

Paula raced a very consistent effort across the day. Her times were just a bit slower than last year, but the effort and heart that she showed on this day were huge. Paula also had a few issues on the bike course, and although that is a part of racing, one incident really shows the quality of her character. When Paula saw a friend with a puncture on the side of the road, she stopped, gave him her only pitstop canister, and helped him to fix it. Early in the run, I could see that it would be a tough day for Paula, but once again she showed her resolve. Paula’s pace was consistent across the marathon, and she was only 10 minutes off her personal best marathon time. Paula showed her discipline and courage by digging deep to complete the final section from Palani hill to the finish with everything that she had left. When I saw her on Palani and told her to go, she went and held it to the line. Awesome effort Paula. 2018 is going to be a big year.

Race Recap from Coach Rafal Medak:


Rafal on his way to a new Kona PB!

It was the Ironman World Championship weekend and all triathlon focus was on Kona. Rafal and Steve were battling testing weather conditions of Hawaii.

After a consistent and strong season a new PB in Kona was a big goal. Rafal Herman was ready and excited to test his fitness in Kona for the 3rd time. He was a fantastic swim of 1:02 which was a massive 8 min PB. This set him very nicely for a tough and hot bike leg which Rafal covered in impressive time of 4 hours and 58 minutes. It wasn’t without some minor nutrition issues. The run was a testing time as all athletes were feeling the heat of the day and times were looking to be slower the in previous years. The key was to stay focused and follow the plan. Rafal did just that and finished the run in 3 hrs and 41 min.  His overall time was outstanding 9 hrs and 51 min with was a massive PB in Kona by 27 min.
I’m very proud of Rafal’s performance, execution and fighting till the end. It was a pleasure to watch him focus on the process and take care of all the details. The reward was a great result which gave him 43rd place in the world in his AG. Congrats Rafal!

Steve Lyons set himself a goal to enjoy the experience of Ironman World Championship in Hawaii and embrace the privilege to compete in this iconic race. Having prepared for the race very well Steve was ready for whatever the day through at him.  His swim was the strongest ever in the ocean conditions. The bike course has providing challenging condition for all competitors but Steve delivered solid ride and always stayed focus as per the race plan. His experience was topped with solid run and total finishing time of 13:54. The finish line experience was a unique and very special. Steve was very lucky to share his achievement with his wife and friends.  I’m very pleased to see Steve delivering a controlled and solid race which he could enjoy and be proud of for a very long time! I’m a very proud coach! Great job Steve!


Marathon training day for David.

There was still a lot of racing outside of Hawaii…
David Nicholson decided to experience Amsterdam marathon on Sunday. The weather was delivered – a sunny autumn day. With David’s main goal being Ironman Cozumel late November, we agreed that David would treat this race a training day. I’m pleased that David followed the instruction and enjoyed an easy controlled pace. It was a nice weekend away for David and Clare.  Well done David! Enjoy the recovery 🙂


Enjoying the racing is key, great job Carolina and Ana. 🙂

While super motivated after all the hype of Ironman Hawaii a day before The Fun Team, Ana Berenguel and Carolina Lanza, enjoyed a Sunday duathlon in London. As always it was fun and lots of smiles. Well done girls to show us how to experience and enjoy this sport over and over again!

Race Recap from Coach Lisbeth Kristensen:


Bettina, Arnaud and Melanie enjoying good times in Kona!

On Saturday, I had 4 of my athletes taking part in Hawaii IM. And I’m very proud to say that they all did a great job and all finished even though not everything went to plan!
Arnaud Margot raced for the first time in Kona. And this was his 3rd IM of this year! With a 6st place in Lanzarote and a 3rd place in IM UK. Arnaud just steadily keeps improving. Arnaud has been working very hard on his swim and this summer, something really clicked! So in Kona, Arnaud posted an amazing 1:00 swim! Then he rode a 4:51 and this was on a normal road bike. You’d probably only see 3-4 guys on the course on road bikes! Arnaud finished off with a 3:30 marathon, in a total time of 9:28 and came 12th overall in age group 25-29. Well done on amazing race Arnaud!

Melanie Baumann came to Hawaii in her best shape ever. Melanie had a very ok swim and then we thought and hoped for a very fast bike but the heat in Hawaii is just extremely hard on her and she didn’t get the bike split that we’d been hoping for. Melanie is in her best running shape ever but also on the marathon, the heat became a bit issue for her and she had to walk for 30 mins at one stage. She still ran a 3:48 marathon! Despite all of these issues, Melanie still ended up in 16th place with an overall time of 10:40. Very well done Melanie!

Bettina Strehl had a great swim (1:09) and great bike until she got some really bad issues with one foot and she struggled to put pressure on this foot for the last bit of the ride. She still rode 5:28 Unfortunately, this foot problem followed her onto the run and Bettina therefore had to walk a lot. It was a true struggle for her to get to the finish line but she made it!


Kona tests out her race kit before in the days before the start!

My last athlete who raced was Jona Dahlqvist. Jona also finished in style and toughed it out! Well done to all of you, very proud of you all!


Third place podium and World Champs Qualifier for Gerda Maria!

In Turkey, I had Gerda Maria Dumitru racing the 70.3. Gerda Maria had a great swim and was first out of the water in her age group, 30-34. For the first 20 kms, it took Gerda a bit of time to get going and she got passed by 2 other girls. On the run, she hung in tough and managed to remain in 3rd position until the finish! Gerda’s 3rd place also meant that she’s now qualified for 70.3 World Champs in South Africa next year!

Race Recap from Coach Michelle Barnes:


Melonie on her way to a podium finish in her first Xterra!

Well it was a weekend of off-roading for my athletes.
First after having a pretty relaxed summer with just “having fun” in training and taking a break from the TT and exchanging it for the MTB, Melonie entered her first Xterra in Arizona over the weekend. She did awesome and ended up 2nd with a crash included! Next we start slowly building through the winter (Melonie’s best training months) for some key race next year. Soon we will be swapping the MTB for the fat bike. Melonie had such a huge year of racing & life changes that this time to reset is critical for next years successes. So proud of how she handles everything thrown at her- true champ!!!


Tough conditions suited Joanie to a T!

Next up Joanie entered her first Ultra after a season of some 70.3’s, Olympic Distance races, road races and MTB races! I knew all would have her prepared enough to get through an Ultra. With hardly any long runs (as I don’t think she needs them) she ended up winning her category!!! Lucky for Joanie the conditions were tough with 6 inches of snow of the course, perfect for our epic racer;-) Well done Joanie!

Race Recap from Coach Christian Nitschke:


10k PB for Alexander; good job!

Most of my athletes had their season break and have started the preparation for the 2018 season already.
Both Martin Kasten and Alexander Orlov used a local 10km run race to have a serious test of their run fitness. Martin finished the run in 39:01min very close to his personal best, a very good out of training effort before his last races of the season in Thailand in November.

Alexander Orlov´s 2017 season was over before it really started due to a crash and broken hand in the beginning of June. The good thing is, we could start with the 2018 preparation early and focus a bit more on the run recently ;-). After a new 5km personal best last weekend he could run a new 10km personal best of 48:16 this weekend. His next race will be a half marathon at the end of august and I would be surprised if we don’t see a personal best there as well.

Pavel Blagikh races the 70.3 Gloria in Turkey last Sunday. It was his last race of the season. The preparation was very rough with many hours at work and a stomach flu the week leading into the race, but still he was able to finish the race in 4hrs37min just 5min off his personal best over that distance. He had an ok swim and a great bike ride but was completely drained on the run due to the lack of energy already the days before the race. It´s a well deserved rest for Pavel now before we start to prepare for the next season goals

Race Recap from Coach Carson Christen:


PB and World Champs qualifier for Lee – congratulations!

Lee Melling placed top-10 and set a new PB 5 weeks ago at Portugal 70.3. He then asked, is it possible to qualify for South Africa 2018 in Turkey? We looked at the results and course, and I said, why not? So Lee hunkered down the training for another 5 weeks and packed his bags! On the day, Lee set a new PB, and got his 2018 Worlds slot! Way to add in an extra race and make it happen this late in the year. Coach is stoked!


Congrats Jappas on a nice win and course PR 🙂

Jappas Du Preez continued his Fall XC run season this past weekend at the New Forest Stinger 5 Miler. He was the defending champion, but decided to take it one step farther this year, setting a 1min PR on the course and winning by 4min! I think he had some serious motivation off the back of watching Kona and knowing he’ll be on Ali’i Drive next year! Way to go Jappas!


Great work Erick, working hard for the win in Xterra.

Erick Meier Martinez took part in his first triathlon race since joining the squad, entering a local Xterra race this past weekend. We didn’t have it on the calendar for very long, and hadn’t done much specific MTB or trail work due to 70.3 goals later on. Xterra is a tricky sport where AVG speed and pace are generally not what you hope, due to very heavy and steep terrain. Erick still showed up, raced hard, while many quit due to rough water and tough courses, and ended up on the top step of the podium in his age group! Way to stick it out and persevere, Erick!

Race Recap from Coach Vassilis Krommidas:


Mania had a good race finishing with 4th place in her AG.

This week I had three athletes were they participate in races. Mania Bikof raced in 70,3 Turkey, in rough swimming conditions and windy day she makes a good race, finished 4th in her AG with 5 min PB.


Third place podium for Wouter!

Wouter Delbaer participated in Bali Olympic dst. Triathlon finishing 3d in his AG and 9th overall, In also rough swimming conditions and with his small swim experience was a difficult start for him but then increase their performance, covered the lost time and finished in the front. Certainly he can have better results to come.


Great to get the TT win, well done Michalis.

Finally in covered race Michalis Theocharous  come for another time first winner in his AG in uphill TT  bike race in Cyprus, is the 5th winning race in a row for Michalis this Fall.

Congratulations to all !

Race Recap from Coach Robbie Haywood:

Steve Pressman closed out his 2017 season with Ironman Louisville. Steve has had a big year of racing and training, including an excellent camp with us in St Moritz. A super swim and bike set him up nicely, but his nemesis the second half of the run caught up with him. He has made much progress this season, and we look forward and plan for 2018 with much to take forward. Well done Steve, now enjoy some well earned recovery.

Mark Watt stood on the Kona start line for the 4th time. It was a tough day, gutting out a finish time many would be happy with. Mark can take solace that the journey and process to get to that start line is just as important as the journey to the finish line. As an over achiever, it is sometimes necessary to step back and assess the whole picture, while planning for the next journey. Well done Mark, some rest, recovery and we plan for new goals in 2018.

Race Recap from Coach Susie Langley:

Having overcome a period of obstacles, was very happy when Sandra Gisin reported in she both completed and enjoyed the Hallwilerseelauf (Half Marathon). Back on track 🙂

 

Congratulations to all athletes competing this weekend.

Trisutto.com online triathlon coaches are available to help improve your performance here...

Play The Hand You’re Dealt

Play The Hand You’re Dealt

Of the many valuable lessons impressed upon me during my time working with Brett, the Doc, there is one that rings true time and time again from professional ranks to age groupers alike. It is to play the hand you’re dealt.

What does this mean? Playing the hand you’re dealt….It could for example mean any of the following:-

  • that you started swimming at 40, are 5’4, and not flexible so NO you will never swim like Michael Phelps
  • you are riding a TT bike before running a marathon so NO you will never cycle at 120 rpm like Chris Froome
  • your GI may not be able to absorb calories like Chrissie Wellington so NO you can’t ignore the vomiting instead slow down and play defense until you can start racing again
  • you’re in your 50’s dealing with a history of injuries and crashes that have left you with a body that isn’t able to bend and respond as it used so NO you can’t expect that to change with hoping.

The true lesson is that you accept your own limitations and maximize what you can do with the body you have on race day.

I was able to see this lesson truly and valiantly in action watching my athlete Claudia Kretschman race her way to a 3rd place finish in her age group at Ironman Mt. Tremblant last week.

Claudia has a long history in triathlon racing successfully in the 2000s in Kona as an age grouper and even racing back in the early 90s as a professional. But over her long career, she has faced many setbacks from injuries and crashes that have left her with body in her 50s that isn’t the same as the one she had in her 20s. An accident a few years ago resulted in severe damage to her cervical spine, her C1 vertebra was shattered in 7 places and the ligaments on both sides of her neck were shredded. This injury requiried Claudia to have a fusion from the base of her skull to her C4 and left her with very limited movement in her neck. During her comeback last year, she had another setback as a stress fracture in her heel left her once again on the sidelines. Yet despite these setbacks, Claudia was intent on not only completing her comeback Ironman in Mt. Tremblant but also on fighting to be at the top of her age group.

Claudia’s neck fusion has required her to adjust to a new style of swimming and biking. Rather than focus on what she can’t do, Claudia has improvised. She can no longer sight while swimming by lifting her head, so Claudia has adopted a stroke with a breaststroke stop every 40-50 cycles to check that she Is on course. Most athletes would use this as an excuse to accept slower swim times but not Claudia. She is pushing herself to match and surpass her previous swim times even with this new adjustment that costs her time and interrupts her momentum.

                                        

Before the neck fusion, and after, showing how Claudia has adjusted her bike position.

Likewise on the bike, Claudia is no longer able to achieve her old aero position but has had to make adjustments that allow her to maintain an aero position that suits her new limited mobility. While many would use this as an excuse for slower bike times, Claudia is continuing to push herself to get and stay as aero as she can within the severe limitations of her neck flexibility. Claudia accepts the body she has but does not use it as an excuse. She strives to continually challenge herself and raise the bar.

Finally, on the run, despite her heel injury last fall, Claudia has put in the miles and built up slowly accepting that she has to adjust her run training and style to be strong and fit to run off an Ironman bike. While it may not lead to her fastest half marathon splits it has paid off in Ironman where she is strong and efficient to the final steps of the marathon.

We can all learn from Claudia who truly exemplifies Doc’s lesson. Yes she has been dealt a raw hand by the accident and injuries that have left her with a body that is never going to be as flexible or resilient as it was in her 20s. But instead of dwelling on what she can’t do, Claudia focused on maximizing what she can do despite her limitations and triumphed racing her way to a top performance.

 

Mary Beth Ellis is one of the USA’s most decorated long distance triathletes with 11 Ironman Distance victories and a World ITU Long Course Title. Mary Beth has been a full time Trisutto coach since 2016 after she retired from Professional racing.

 

A Season For All Things

A Season For All Things

Triathlon is a draining sport and too often I see professional and age group athletes racing and training at a high level year-round, day in and day out, year after year. This is not healthy or sustainable.

Humans have since the dawn of time advocated a Sabbath or time of rest. Religion has always seen a benefit in integrating mindful rest into our lives. In addition, our earliest industry, agriculture, saw the benefit of taking a break to allow for rebalancing and rejuvenation. Allowing the land to go fallow lowered yield in the short term in exchange for keeping the land vital for years to come.

In today’s fast paced world, whether in triathlon or in our outside life, we are unwilling to rest and only do so as a last resort once we are sick, injured, or burnt-out. Instead of preserving our long-term health, we chase the short-term performance.

Stuck in a vicious cycle, the modern athlete refuses to take the time to recover that both our body and mind require. Constantly in a state of exhaustion, it is not possible to rebuild without taking time away. The toughest challenge in the world may be to take the step back and rest taking a Sabbatical from the constant stress of the chase.

I would advocate every seventh year a break from high-level long course triathlon racing or at the very least an offseason every year. The professional athletes with highest career longevity take the time each year to rest their mind and body. Likewise, as you see the current crop of women triathletes taking a sabbatical to expand or start a family, I would venture to guess you will see many of these top performers come back stronger in the next five years as the time of unstructured training has allowed both their mind and body to rebalance.

Trying something different over the off-season, means you stay fit and continue to have fun.

We can all learn from our ancestors that rest is a vital part of long term development. Rest doesn’t need to mean sitting on the couch, it can mean enjoying some shorter races or doing an xterra or trying a new sport rather than chasing a Kona qualifier that year. But do give your mind and body a break from the constant struggle of long course racing. Taking a step away to restore your body and your passion for the sport whether for a month or a year will allow you to return in a healthier happier state ready to attack the next season.

 

Mary Beth Ellis is one of the USA’s most decorated long distance triathletes. A member of the US National Team for 4 years, during her career she was an elite ITU racer as well as Top 5 Ironman World Championship finisher. Mary Beth Ellis runs her Trisutto.com coaching program in Andover Massachusetts in the USA and speaks English.

Join Mary-Beth at her triathlon training camps on the Ironman Mont Tremblant course in July http://trisutto.com/camps/#tremblant

Paging the MIA Athlete

Paging the MIA Athlete

Hello? Hello? Are you out there?

Now that I’ve had some time to fully transition to my coaching role, I see so many of the mistakes I made as an athlete. First and foremost is the: Missing In Action (MIA) Athlete syndrome.

I was impossible to coach because of my lack of communication. I think this is one of the key reasons I was able to train and race infinitely better while in a camp situation where coach could watch me in the workout and get at least a few words of feedback out of me after a session. While away from camp, I would go quiet and when I did sent feedback it was data, as I was reticent to report back how I truly felt.

As an athlete, I thought my job was to do the training and shut up. I didn’t realize that giving detailed feedback, not just the data but also qualitative analysis of how I honestly felt, would help not only me but my coach. I think many athletes fall into this trap. They either only provide their coach with factual data on the workout or even worse give zero feedback at all. As a coach, it is hard to know exactly what your athlete is doing and how they are progressing with no feedback to review. The best tool your coach has is the athlete’s response to training and this is what truly will make the relationship successful. The best training plan in the world can fail if the communication is lacking.

 
My message to athletes is this. Please do not worry that you are weak or soft if you give an honest statement about how the session unfolded. The data is great, but your perceived effort is better. As a coach, I want to know if your legs felt heavy or you struggled on the hills, if you’re exhausted or you felt amazing. Please tell your coach everything, as this qualitative analysis doesn’t need to be long or overly detailed it just needs to be honest. This information is essential in completing the feedback loop and allows your coach and you to be even better together.

My old motto as an athlete was “shut up and do your job.”

My new motto as a coach is “do your job and let me know how it went.”

 
Mary Beth Ellis is one of the USA’s most decorated long distance triathletes with 11 Ironman Distance victories and a World ITU Long Course Title. Mary Beth has been a full time Trisutto coach since 2016 after she retired from Professional racing.

Join Mary Beth at one of her upcoming Mont Tremblant Camps in July.

 

Trisutto.com online triathlon coaches are available to help improve your performance here.