Weekly Update for September 29, 2014

Race Results
Ironman Mallorca
Congratulations to Lowry Barfield for his first Ironman finish off the coast of Spain in Mallorca.
12:07:50 Lowry Barfield

The Durapulse TriKids rocked the JCC triathlon with stellar performances.
JCC Youth Triathlon
17:43 Sarah Plant (1st AG F11-12)
19:00 Emily Plant (2nd AG F11-12)
20:00 Sophia Kosednar (3rd AG F11-12)
22:08 Colorado Stanley
25:54 Kaiya Price (3rd AG F1-8)
JCC Mini Triathlon
41:14 Shawn Bernardi (1st Overall)
49:28 Connor Berntgen (2nd Overall)
1:03:33 Jayda Price (1st AG F1-19)

Power in Motion Endurance
Durapulse Performance Company and Power in Motion CrossFit have recently partnered to bring a successful strength and conditioning program to endurance athletes. Formerly DuraFit, this new “CrossFit for endurance” program will use the same proven training methods that Durapulse has utilized that has brought so many endurance athletes incredible success over the past few years.

The program involves daily classes that will be a part of a strength and conditioning program and will train the three energy systems of the body for complete fitness in endurance sports. Many endurance athletes neglect their phosphagen and anaerobic energy systems while giving exclusive focus to their aerobic energy system (ie. “long, slow distance”). To build and maintain complete fitness, and to race effectively, one must train all three energy systems. This program goes beyond the “general physical preparedness” that CrossFit is know for. And the ability to endure is not enough to race well. Participants will build endurance along with strength, power, speed, stamina, agility, accuracy, balance, coordination, and flexibility for their target endurance events. These physical attributes will be developed through various weightlifting and gymnastic (body weight) exercises combined with swimming, biking, and running.

The classes will involve cycling on bike trainers, running, and strength and conditioning methods with an emphasis on great technique, consistency, and work, to develop participants into the strongest and fastest endurance athlete that they can be. Those looking to build durability and resilience in their bodies while developing an increase in work capacity are great candidates for this program. This program is specialized for those training for endurance events, including running, cycling, and triathlon.

Most classes are 90 minutes in duration and will follow this format: warm up, skill and technique session, Workout of the Day (biking or running), strength work, cool down with stretching and mobility work.

Classes begin September 29th with the following schedule:

Monday 5:30-6:30AM (CrossFit Strength and Conditioning)
Tuesday 5:30-7:00PM (Bike emphasis)
Wednesday 5:30-7:00AM (Run emphasis)
Thursday 5:30-7:00PM (Run emphasis)
Friday 5:30-7:00AM (Bike emphasis)

The cost of the program is $199/month and includes a general weekly training plan for target events. The training plan will be interactive through Training Peaks (must set up a free account). The plan will give specific swim, bike, and run workouts during the week and on the weekend. For those only wanting to supplement their training program with strength and conditioning there is an option to attend any two classes/week for $149/month. Drop-ins are also available for a daily fee. Current Durapulse members will receive a discount off the listed price.

With these changes the weekly Durapulse track workout at Saguaro HS will be moved to Power in Motion. Power in Motion CrossFit is located at 16679 N. 90th St, Suite 102, Scottsdale, AZ 85260 near the 101 Freeway and Bell Rd.

I am very excited about this new partnership. Power in Motion has incredible equipment for the needs of triathletes and beyond. The gym location is near fantastic routes for road and off-road training. This is a great opportunity for Durapulse to bring better coaching to the endurance athletes in the valley.

October Tri Clinic
Mark your calendars for the monthly Durapulse Tri Clinic to be held on October 11, 2014. The venue will be at the Granite Reef recreation area on the Salt River along Bush Highway in Mesa. The Granite Reef dam creates a great swimming spot along the popular cycling route on Bush Hwy. Start time will be 6AM with a swim in the river. Following an hour of open water swim skill work the group will then ride the 18 mile Bush Hwy/Usery loop multiple times with a bike lane the entire way. The clinic will finish with a transition run along Bush Hwy. SAG and BBQ lunch will be provided. This clinic is free to Durapulse athletes and $20 for all others. A Tonto parking pass is required at the Granite Reef recreation site and can be purchased at the nearest convenient stores. More details to be announced next week.

SOMA Relay
So far we have 3 teams for SOMA with a couple others looking to be on a team. If you are interested, or know anyone who is interested, in being on a relay team at SOMA please contact me.

Weekly Update for September 22, 2014

Race Results
Durapulse athletes raced very well over the weekend. Laurel Sroufe placed 5th in her age group at the XTERRA National Championships in Ogden, Utah. That’s 5th in the nation. Great racing Laurel! Next up, the XTERRA World Championships in Hawaii at the end of October.

It was great watching so many Durapulse athletes race at the Lifetime Tempe Triathlon yesterday. We have an amazing team as evidenced by the below. Almost everyone who raced yesterday finished on the podium. Congratulations to Nicole Truxes for winning the overall women’s title in the Olympic race and to Ryan Hardy for winning the overall title in the sprint race.

XTERRA National Championships
3:43:31 Laurel Sroufe (5th AG F30-34)

Ironman Maryland
11:54:18 Ryan Ferreira

Lifetime Tempe Triathlon
Super Sprint
45:40 Connor Berntgen (2nd Overall)
50:17 Sarah Plant (1st AG F12-13)
59:54 Emily Plant (2nd AG F12-13)

Sprint
1:03:18 Ryan Hardy (1st Overall)
1:09:06 Branden Turley (1st AG M30-34)
1:16:09 Tyler Barfield (1st AG M14-15)
1:27:45 Evan Barrick (1st AG F14-15)

Olympic
2:12:02 Nicole Truxes (1st Overall Female)
2:20:57 Shawn Bernardi
2:44:24 Galina Kelly (2nd AG F45-49)
2:45:03 Patrick Bass

Tri Rock San Diego Sprint Triathlon
1:35:33 Cheryl Pendergrass

Westchester Olympic Triathlon
2:17:55 Hana Sykorova (3rd Overall Female)

Maui Marathon
3:53:16 Marvin Malkowski Jr.

Maui Half Marathon
1:41:00 Matt Gurtatowski
1:53:39 Joan Sommerlad

Upcoming Races
Watch the following Durapulse athletes race in the coming weeks at their respective races. Lowry, Elliot, and Dmitry have been training very hard for their Ironman races.
September 27, Ironman Mallorca, Lowry Barfield
October 11, Ironman World Championships, Elliot Kawaoka and Dmitry Baer

SOMA Relays
Anyone interested in putting together a team or teams for SOMA? Contact me if you would like to be a part of a relay team for the SOMA half.

Power in Motion Endurance Developed by Durapulse
Durapulse Performance Company and Power in Motion CrossFit have recently partnered to bring a successful strength and conditioning program to endurance athletes. Formerly DuraFit, this new “CrossFit for endurance” program will use the same proven training methods that Durapulse has utilized that has brought so many endurance athletes incredible success over the past few years.

The program involves daily classes that will be a part of a strength and conditioning program and will train the three energy systems of the body for complete fitness in endurance sports. Many endurance athletes neglect their phosphagen and anaerobic energy systems while giving exclusive focus to their aerobic energy system (ie. “long, slow distance”). To build and maintain complete fitness, and to race effectively, one must train all three energy systems. This program goes beyond the “general physical preparedness” that CrossFit is know for. And the ability to endure is not enough to race well. Participants will build endurance along with strength, power, speed, stamina, agility, accuracy, balance, coordination, and flexibility for their target endurance events. These physical attributes will be developed through various weightlifting and gymnastic (body weight) exercises combined with swimming, biking, and running.

The classes will involve cycling on bike trainers, running, and strength and conditioning methods with an emphasis on great technique, consistency, and work, to produce participants who are the strongest and fastest endurance athlete that they can be. Those looking to build durability and resilience in their bodies while developing an increase in work capacity are great candidates for this program. This program is specialized for those training for endurance events, including running, cycling, and triathlon.

Most classes are 90 minutes in duration and will follow this format: warm up, skill and technique session, Workout of the Day (biking or running), strength work, cool down with stretching and mobility work.

Classes begin September 29th with the following schedule:

Monday 5:30-6:30AM (CrossFit Strength and Conditioning)
Tuesday 5:30-7:00PM (Bike emphasis)
Wednesday 5:30-7:00AM (Run emphasis)
Thursday 5:30-7:00PM (Run emphasis)
Friday 5:30-7:00AM (Bike emphasis)

The cost of the program is $199/month and includes a general weekly training plan for target events. The training plan will be interactive through Training Peaks (must set up a free account). The plan will give specific swim, bike, and run workouts during the week and on the weekend. For those only wanting to supplement their training program with strength and conditioning there is an option to attend any two classes/week for $149/month. Drop-ins are also available for a daily fee. Current Durapulse members will receive a discount off the listed price.

With these changes the weekly Durapulse track workout at Saguaro HS will be moved to Power in Motion. Power in Motion CrossFit is located at 16679 N. 90th St, Suite 102, Scottsdale, AZ 85260 near the 101 Freeway and Bell Rd.

I am very excited about this new partnership. Power in Motion has incredible equipment for the needs of triathletes and beyond. The gym location is near fantastic routes for road and off-road training. This is a great opportunity for Durapulse to bring better coaching to the endurance athletes in the valley.

Weekly Update for September 15, 2014

Race Results
Spartan Beast Temecula, California
3:38:44 Mike Sanchez (1st AG M50-54)
2:30:00 Eric Kimble (3rd AG M30-34)

Upcoming Races
Over the next two weekends the following Durapulse athletes will be racing around the world in their respective events. Best wishes to Laurel Sroufe as she will be representing Tribe/Durapulse at the XTERRA National Championships in Utah.
Laurel Sroufe, XTERRA National Championships, Ogden, Utah
Ryan Ferreira, Ironman Maryland
Marvin Malkowski Jr., Maui Marathon
Joan Sommerlad, Maui Half Marathon
Lowry Barfield, Ironman Mallorca, Spain

The following are some of the local races on the calendar.
Tempe Triathlon, September 21, 2014
JCC Triathlon, September 28, 2014
XTERRA Trail Run-Estrella Mountain, October 5, 2014
Bartlett Triathlon, October 5, 2014
XTERRA Rock Hopper, October 12, 2014
SOMA Triathlon, October 19, 2014
TriFamily Gilbert Triathlon, October 19, 2014
Mesa Halloween Triathlon, October 26, 2014
Thanksgiving Triathlon, November 27, 2014

Upcoming Clinics
Mark your calendars and reserve the following dates.
October 11, 2014 Tri Clinic at Roosevelt or Saguaro Lake
November 8, 2014 Open Water Swim at Saguaro Lake

Coaching Tips
Bicycle Pedal Stroke
The pedal stroke in a spin cycle is one complete revolution or 360 degrees from one point in the pedal stroke back to that same point. A bicycle revolution is measured in RPM’s or revolutions per minute and is often referred to as “bicycle cadence.” There are four major phases in a complete revolution of the pedal stroke; the down stroke, the up stroke, and the very top and very bottom of the pedal stroke. The downstroke is the phase where the rider moves his/her foot from “top dead center” to “bottom dead center.” This phase requires the rider to push and the force of this phase can be increased by using the rider’s weight by standing on the pedals. The downward force required to move through this phase is inherent to all riders. This is the phase that all riders used to learn how to ride a bike. “Pushing” is a natural movement to all riders, young or old, weak or strong.

The upstroke is the phase where the rider moves his/her foot from “bottom dead center” to “top dead center.” This phase requires the rider to pull up. The muscles used for pulling are not as strong as the muscles used for pulling so there is usually a loss of power during this phase of the pedal stroke. The very top and bottom of the pedal stroke are considered “dead spots” because of a riders lack of strength and/or coordination to transition from pushing to pulling or pulling to pushing.

To be an efficient cyclist one must learn to use all phases of the pedal stroke or keep constant pressure on the pedals. Rather than limiting the muscles groups being used by only pushing, a rider should use multiple muscles groups in all phases of the revolution. This will increase the time to fatigue in the cyclist’s legs and prolong endurance. Greater strength and endurance are every cyclist’s desire and by dedicating some focus to all the phases of the pedal stroke one can become a more efficient rider.

Every rider knows how to push so the focus should be more on pulling and overcoming the dead spots at the top and bottom of the circle. Contrary to popular thought, good pedaling mechanics do not result from pulling the pedal upon the upstroke. What probably happens is that the rider attempts to “unweight” the pedal, giving the opposite leg less resistance. To overcome the dead spot at the top of the pedal stroke a rider must drive his/her knee towards the handle bars as if they were kicking a ball. Then they must transition to the push phase.

To overcome the dead spot at the bottom of the pedal stroke a rider needs to engage muscles required for pulling, pulling back and pulling up. Greg Lemond related this motion to “scraping mud off the bottom of your shoe.” Imagine you have mud on the bottom of your shoe and how you would scrape the mud off. Use the same motion while riding to overcome the dead spot at the bottom of the pedal stroke.

A great exercise to work on your pedal stroke is one-legged drills. While riding on the trainer, or a hill with a slight incline, you will unclip one leg and pedal for 30-60 seconds with a focus of keeping constant pressure on the pedals. Repeat with the other leg. You should not whip your leg around and use angular momentum to accomplish the one legged exercises but focus on engaging the weaker “pull” muscles. It will take some practice but in time you will develop the strength to ride with one leg comfortably without any dead spots and the endurance to ride for a great distance with both legs.

The optimal cadence speed is 90 revolutions per minute. At 85-95 rpm’s the right ratio of muscle groups are being used for greater endurance. A cyclist may have more strength and power at a lower cadence but his/her endurance will be compromised. Low cadence riding is good for extra power needed for hill climbing and sprints but not for steady and long efforts. Time trialing and triathlon racing requires long steady efforts. Riding at the optimal cadence of 85-95 rpm’s while training and racing will ensure the rider has the endurance to complete the ride at a fast pace and have the ability to run well off the bike. The complaint I often hear of having “heavy legs” while running off the bike has to do with the rider’s bike cadence being too low. Because the optimal run cadence is 90-100 rpm’s then to run well off the bike a triathlete must keep his/her bike cadence at 90 rpm’s to prepare his/her legs for a run off the bike with a high leg turn over.

Weekly Update for September 8, 2014

Race Results
Congratulations to the amazing Shane Arters for his astounding performance at the Ironman 70.3 World Championships in Canada. Shane set a personal record for himself at the distance and finished in third place in the men’s 45-49 age group. THAT’S 3RD IN THE WORLD!! The top 5 men in that age group all finished within minutes of each other. It was true race at the world level. Shane has had an amazing year and finished 2014 with a very fine performance.

Jason Sexauer also competed in the 70.3 championships in Canada. To reach that level of racing requires great commitment to the sport, hard work following a specialized training plan, and perfect execution in the races. Congratulations Jason.

A special shout to the Durapulse TriKids for their success in the sport. Coach Joe and I are very proud of our kid’s team for their hard work every practice and determination on race day to do their very best. Sarah and Emily Plant got to experience their first rough water ocean triathlon in California and despite the challenging course conquered the race.

Ironman 70.3 World Championships
4:15:26 Shane Arters (3rd AG M45-49)
4:47:28 Jason Sexauer

Pacific Coast Super Sprint Triathlon
44:27 Sarah Plant (2nd AG F11-13)
53:18 Emily Plant

TriFamily Peoria
Mini
45:22 Connor Berntgen (2nd Overall)
58:23 Sophia Kosednar (3rd AG F15-19)
59:37 Mark Potts
Kids
19:12 Jayda Price (2nd AG F11-12)
19:56 Colorado Stanley (2nd AG M9-10)
24:22 Kaiya Price (1st AG F8 and under)

Jerome Hill Climb
46:53 Mike Sanchez

Disney Half Marathon
1:38:00 Marvin Malkowski Jr.

Saturday Workout
Group ride to Saguaro Lake. Meet at the DC Ranch Village at 5:45AM. The Village is near the intersection of Thompson Peak and Bell Rd in North Scottsdale. The route will be to Saguaro Lake and back with a 30 min open water swim at Butcher Jones Cove. I will carry everyone’s swim gear and provide any other support needed. This is a 60 mile out and back course. Some people have a longer ride on their plan and will be riding into Mesa beyond the lake after the swim. A route map has been uploaded into your Training Peaks account.

Coaching Tips
Recently I was driving along a popular cycling route and witnessed numerous cyclists, including members of the Durapulse team, ride through an intersection without stopping at a clearly marked STOP sign. Cyclists are not only required to obey every law that a vehicle must follow but these laws are to protect us and keep us safe. Cyclists get a bad reputation from motorists and it is because of acts like this. Please follow the rules of the road even if it is a little inconvenient. The laws are to protect us so that we can enjoy our hobbies. Remind other cyclists by setting a good example of safely riding on the streets and following the rules of the road.

Weekly Update for August 25, 2014

Race Results
Ironman 70.3 Lake Stevens
5:28:52 Mike Hartman

Anthem Reverse Triathlon
Congratulations to our youth TriKids team who excelled at Anthem. Sarah Plant was 1st overall in the youth division and Connor Berntgen and Evan Barrick won their divisions in the adult race.
Youth
23:54 Sarah Plant (1st Overall)
26:54 Emily Plant (2nd Overall Female)
26:55 Colorado Stanley
28:34 Jayda Price
28:42 Sophia Kosednar

Sprint
1:15:48 Connor Berntgen (1st AG M10-14)
1:20:45 Evan Barrick (1st AG F10-14)

Saturday Workout
This Saturday will be a ride to the town of Sunflower from Fountain Hills. This is a 60ish mile out and back with a good amount of elevation change for those who like to get high. There is a wide shoulder for most of the route. Bring an extra tube and CO2 for puncture repair. There are no services on this route so I will be providing Support And Gear. It is recommended that you bring three bottles of fluid for this route. If your plan call for more or less than 60 miles then you may turn around early for a shorter ride or ride longer after you get back to Fountain Hills. Meet At Peaks Athletic Club to start riding a 5:30AM. Peaks is located at 12545 N Saguaro Blvd.

Coaching Tips
Gravity is a natural law and runners can use gravity to their advantage not only with downhill running but with running on the flats. With a slight lean from the hips (center of mass) one can use gravity to assist them in their forward propulsion. The lean must be from toe to head as if the runner is falling forward towards the ground. The runner should not lean from the shoulders and counter balance the fall with the legs. The runner should always feel as if he/she is falling to the ground. Keep the body erect and use the body’s center of mass for the forward lean. For inexperienced runners this can be an out of control feeling. As one practices they will get more comfortable with the lean and allowing gravity to increase his or her speed.

So much of the inefficiency with running comes from bouncing or vertical movement. While it is impossible to eliminate all vertical movement a person can minimize it with a good forward lean. Less vertical movement and more horizontal power translates to faster speeds. Using gravity by leaning forward gives the runner “free speed” because gravity is always there to pull the runner to the ground.

Practicing downhill running will help with the forward falling feeling. The hill must be steep enough to pull the runner down but not so steep that is forces the runner to slap his/her feet. Doing downhill repeats also allows the legs to move fast without too much exertion. Runners often express that they need to do more speed work at the track to get faster. Track workouts are a great way to develop speed but at the expense of increased intensity. If a runner wants to work on speed without the exertion of the track then downhill repeats are the key. It is good to choose routes that are hilly so that the undulation helps work different muscle groups and gives the runner an opportunity to work on speed without much exertion.

If after a downhill workout the runner’s quadriceps muscles (front of legs) are tight and sore then the runner was over striding or reaching out too far to prevent the out of control feeling. In simple terms overstriding creates impact forces on the quadriceps muscle group and slows the runner down. It is the body’s natural reaction to over stride on the down hill to maintain balance but if this happens the runner is putting on the brakes and fighting gravity. Be aware of this and consciously focus on keeping the feet underneath the body’s center of mass. Do not fight gravity. Think “free speed.” Heel striking is usually the result of over striding but one can over stride without striking the heels. Sore quads are a good indication that over striding occurred and the runner needs to emphasize taking quicker steps, especially on downhill sections.

Quick feet and short strides are essential to good downhill running. Knees should be high, which will require strong and efficient hip flexors. High knees allow more force to drive the feet into the ground. A quick step reduces impact time and time to next stride.

Practice these skills while downhill running to be a more efficient runner overall.