American triathlon's elder statesman Hunter Kemper qualified for his third straight Olympics this past weekend, fending off Andy Potts to place sixth and be the top American finisher at the Hy-Vee ITU Triathlon World Cup race in Des Moines, Iowa.
Sarah Haskins joins Laura Bennett and Julie Swail Ertel on the women's Olympic triathlon team. Haskins, who won the silver medal at the 2008 ITU World Championships in Vancouver in early June, finished sixth in Des Moines and punched her first Olympic ticket by beating Sarah Groff.
More race info can be found on the ITU website , including video wrap-ups of both men's and women's races (click here and then click on Hy-Vee in the list to the left of the video player).
After representing the U.S. at the Olympics in swimming and triathlon, Sheila Taormina will once again proudly wear the stars and stripes -- this time in modern pentathlon. She was recently nominated (though not officially finalized) to her fourth Olympic team in her third sport by the USOC (full story, including an explanation on why it isn't yet "official," here.)
Modern pentathlon consists of shooting, swimming, running, equestrian and fencing. Taormina was a gold medalist in swimming at the 1996 Games in Atlanta in the 4x200 relay. After making the transition to triathlon for the 2000 Sydney Games, she placed sixth. In Greece four years later, Taormina again participated in triathlon, finishing 23rd.
Sheila Taoarima prepares for the swimming event of the modern pentathlon competition at the 2007 Pan Am Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. AP Photo/Armando Franca
Taormina's ability to adapt to new sports seems uncanny. The progression from swimming to tri may be natural, but to take up shooting, fencing and equestrian shows dedication and the willingness to learn and try new things. But she's also overcome more than having to reinvent herself as an athlete. As ESPN reports, Taormina's ordeal with a stalker has led her to become a stronger person.
Active Expert, Bruce Hildenbrand previews the Giro d'Italia that starts Saturday
Even with the torch atop Everest, Olympics are clouded
Climbing Everest because it's there is inspiring. Climbing Everest because it's in Tibet is not nearly so heartwarming, particularly to an international audience that is still trying to sort through the ethics of getting enthusiastic about August's Beijing Olympics.Read full story
Make doping a crime, says Lewis
Olympic legend Carl Lewis has called on governments around the world to make the use of banned substances in sport a criminal offense.Read full story
Shave valuable time in you bike-to-run triathlon transitions by installing a quick-lace system:
But this takes the party one step (or several, depending on how old you are) beyond the traditional cake and ice cream. The idea behind the B-Fit B-Day Challenge is to swim, bike and run your new age. To do this, take your age and:
1) Swim the number of miles in the first number
2) Run the number of miles in the second number
3) Bike the number of miles in the combined number
So a 45-year-old athlete would:
1) Swim 4 miles
2) Run 5 miles
3) Bike 45 miles
"My goal in creating the Challenge was to come up with something that has all of the athletic appeal of a triathlon, but with a much more gentle and family-friendly atmosphere," says Mica. "We really hope this new Challenge will encourage athletes, their friends, and their family to celebrate their birthday in a unique and healthy way."
The B-Fit B-Day Challenge is completely free and open to anyone of any age. The website currently boasts over 120 members. Those who join can create profiles with photos and video, interact and encourage others, post completion times and take part in some great sponsor premiums offered on the site.
(Thanks to B-Fit B-Day member Stronger for permission to use her awesome photo montage!)
The Challenge is divided into three levels: Gold, Silver and Bronze.
Bronze: Do all three (swim/bike/run) during the week of their birthday.
Silver: Do all three (swim/bike/run) in the 72 hours (three days) before, after or during their birthday.
Gold: Do all three (swim/bike/run) in 24 hours to celebrate their birthday!
Some important notes: Since "0" birthdays (like 10, 20, 30, 40, 50...) are important milestones, the "0" represents a 10. This means that on those "0" birthdays athletes must celebrate this big milestone by running ten miles.
Also, note that transitions don't count in the overall time.
"It's not so much about how far or how fast you go or how many people you pass, but more of a celebration of your life, health and fitness on your birthday," Mica says. "In other words, where a race is highly competitive, stressful, punishing and very publicyou know...a racethe B-Fit B-Day Challenge is personal, intimate, rewarding and stress free."
What better way to give yourself something to work for in 2008 than to sign up for a race? But be aware, some pre-planning could save you a little money. Many races that already have registration open will be raising their prices beginning January 1.
Now is the perfect time to find out the registration details of your favorite race and add it to this list. Runners, cyclists, adventure racers, swimmers and anyone who wants others to be a part of an awesome event can add it to the comments section below.
What's going to be your motivation to train in 2008?
This weekend will be a big one for triathletes planning out their 2008 season as several big races open registration. Set your alarms on Saturday to snag a spot in St. Anthony's Triathlon, the Wildflower Triathlons Festival and the Escape From Alcatraz lottery. Then start the workweek off by registering for the Los Angeles Triathlon on Monday morning.
St. Anthony's Triathlon, April 25 through 27, kicks off many a triathlete's season in St. Petersburg, Florida. The race is celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2008. It starts off on Friday with a fitness expo and the black-tie Medallion Gala. Saturday's Meek & Mighty Triathlon is actually two races: a 100-yard swim/3.6-mile bike/half-mile run tri for kids age 7 to 10, and a 200-yard swim/5.4-mile bike/1-mile run race for novice triathletes age 11 and over.
Sunday, April 27, is the Olympic-distance St. Anthony's Triathlon. Once named "Race of the Year" by USA Triathlon, St. Anthony's draws elite triathletes from all over the world competing for $60,000 in prizes ( Mike Reed, Greg Bennett, Craig Alexander and Chris McCormack rounded out the top four pro men in 2007; top-three women were Michelle Dillon, Sarah Haskins and Julie Dibens.) A great place to watch and learn.
There's also an elite amateur division for fleet-footed age groupers. Limited to 4,000 individuals and 100 relay teams, last year's event sold out in seven hours. Registration opens December 1 at 9 a.m. EST.
Read or share stories of past experiences at this message board post: #.
Also beginning registration on Saturday is the Wildflower Triathlons Festival. Featuring a 70.3-distance long course race, a sprint-distance mountain bike race and an Olympic-distance tri over three days in early May, Wildflower continues to be one of the most talked-about West coast races. Read Everyman Triathlete Roman Mica's race review (including need-to-know secrets) of the 2007 25th anniversary race here.
December 1 is also the day when lottery applications are available for the drawing to participate in the Escape From Alcatraz Triathlon. The notorious course starts with a plunge from a ferry into the waters off Alcatraz Island, then consists of a 1.5-mile swim, 1-mile run, 18-mile bike and 8-mile run, including the infamous 400-step Sand Ladder.
And on Monday, December 3, registration opens for the Los Angeles Triathlon. Featuring both Olympic and sprint-distance races, the event is part of the Life Time Fitness Series, which draws some of the best triathletes in the world.
Hey everyone, Trish and Toby here. This month we've created a guide to our best seasonal articles to help you maintain a healthy lifestyle throughout the holidays. No matter what your active passion may be, we've got you covered.
With holiday feasts right around the corner and weather that can diminish our motivation to train, it is not uncommon to pack on a few extra pounds this time of year. Active Expert Charles Stuart Platkin’s article, The Diet Detective: Fall Into Healthy Eating Habits, offers valuable tips for maintaining fitness without a compromise in performance at winter races and ensures a return to peak form in the spring.
Have you ever heard the saying, “athletes are made in the off season”? Now's the time to target your weaknesses and build proper technique and habits to lead into a successful racing season. Check out Boost Your Endurance in 7 Simple Steps and get the most from your off-season training.
Basketball season is upon us and it’s time for fundamental workouts with and without the basketball. Mississippi State basketball coach, Sharon Fanning, shares a 45-minute Workout that will developing confidence, coordination, strength, timing, and stamina on the hardwood.
Indoor Climbing Gyms Offer Year-round Fun Fitness and a nice break from the treadmill and stationary bike routine. Don’t let the winter elements take you off belay—utilize indoor climbing gyms to build stamina and confidence in a controlled environment. When the weather warms enough to head outdoors, you’ll be in peak condition.
Activities of Interest:
Check out Sacramento Winter Softball Camp by Olympic gold medalists Tairia Flowers and Natasha Watleyto hone your softball skills at the plate and in the field. Focus will be on increasing offensive power, slapping techniques, defensive fundamentals and pitching development. This camp will also feature practice-structure tips and drills along with valuable college recruiting advice from the pros.
Take advantage of The Classic Y-100, one of the last century rides of the year on November 25 in Ormond Beach, Florida. Crank out 100 in this inaugural ride that promises a beautiful route leading north along the Intracoastal waterway through parks and along the Atlantic coast. This event features a great safe route for beginners as well as 65- and 35-mile routes.
Folks in Southern California have already begun to register for the 2008 Carlsbad Marathon and Half Marathon on January 20. This was Toby’s first half marathon back in 2006 and he recommends it for runners of all abilities because of the fast course and beautiful ocean view.
See your training bear fruit at the oldest Ironman-distance triathlon held in the continental United States. Check out one of five 2008 Vineman events: Ironman 70.3, full Vineman, sprint tri at sundown, women's half or Aquabike during this weekend-long triathlon celebration.
Active's 2007 Ironman World Championship special section is alive and kickin'! We're going to be updating daily with training tips, feature stories, blogs and video--taking you all the way through the midnight cut-off time on Saturday, the 13th.
Right now, you can check out:
Active Expert Gale Bernhardt's guide to training for your first Ironman. Her 13-week program is tailored to triathletes looking to step up to long-distance racing.
Last night I attended an interview of Normann Stadler, the two-time reining Ironman world champion. The interview was organized by Competitor Magazine and the Triathlon Club of San Diego. The newly-opened Coastal Sports & Wellness Medical Center was kind enough to host the couple hundred triathletes who showed up for the Chipotle burritos and live interview with host Bob Babbitt.
Stadler kept the audience entertained with his German accent and anecdotes of his younger days winning races in his homeland. It was amusing to learn that Stadler actually fears swimming in the ocean and trains primarily in the pool. Among recapping last year’s win in Kona, the controversy between him and Chris McCormick resurfaced once again, because we all love drama and it’s good for the sport, right?
It was interesting to learn that Germany, Stadler’s country of origin, has developed quite the following for triathlon. In fact, last year Germany broadcasted live race-day coverage from Kona, Hawaii--logging over 23-million viewers! The third weekend of October, Germany will again broadcast the Ironman world championship as the sport continues to grow in popularity. Last year, coverage aired in the US on December 9 with a similar schedule expected this year. You can always log-on to the web for live race-day coverage (check out the Ironman website for more info).
What I think worth mentioning is the fact that in most parts of the country (except, perhaps, San Diego, birthplace of triathlon), most people wouldn't recognize this international icon if they passed him on the street. But to the room full of triathletes who gathered for the interview, Stadler represents the pinnacle of triathlon excellence. Each individual in that room who trains and aspires to compete in races of all distances is inspired by what Stadler stands for.
Thus, leaving the interview I was fired up and excited for the weekend as I am an Active Warrior! I drove straight to my local bike shop and picked up my bicycle, which just had the chain replaced. When I got home and flipped-on the television to an interview of Lokelani McMichael, the youngest female Ironman competitor. This got me even more pumped-up so I organized and set out my cycling gear on the floor of my room for my ride into work this morning before calling it a night.
So ask yourself this: What inspires you? I mean, what makes your heart beat fast and gives you goose-bumps? What stirs those bottled up emotions in a call-to-action? What does it take to get you off that couch and outside? Find that heart and feed it what it needs to strive and take you places: physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually.
The Triathlon One O One series, which began this past May in Bradenton, Florida, has been canceled. Their website, www.trioneoone.com shows only the following text:
Billed on its website as "bringing a new brand of world class long-distance racing to the multisport world," the series sought to fill the gap between the Ironman and half-Iron distances. Each race offered a $50,000 prize purse, with $10,000 going to the first place finisher in each gender. The series finale in The Woodlands, Texaspreviously scheduled for Novemberwas offering a $150,000 purse.
No other information on why the series ended was readily available. The site had previously postponed a race in Halifax, originally scheduled for this September. The announcement on the website read:
"IMPORTANT: Triathlon One O One regrets that this year's Triathlon One O One Halifax event has been postponed until August 31st, 2008. The reason for the postponement is due to a recent resignation by our local race management company several days ago."
Whether the series is truly canceled or just on hiatus is still to be determined. The news does raise a few questions, however: Can a series of national long-distance races not under the Ironman umbrella compete with the globally-recognized brand? Are triathletes, both professionals and age-groupers alike, more likely to sign up for a race because of potential prize money or because of other factors that characterize a race?
While the initial Bradenton race was met with good reviews, the problems that plagued Tri One O One may suggest that a national series of races might be better served by starting off small as it cultivates regulars and grows within the triathlon community rather than exploding on the scene before bonking halfway through the season.
The Life Time Fitness Triathlon Series is more a collective of nationally prominent Olympic-distance races than a schedule of races born of one company. But for long-distance tri's, one has few choices outside of Ironman sponsored races. The question remains, does this benefit the sport?
Today, August 8th, begins the one-year countdown to the 2008 Olympics Games in Beijing, China. Spending more money than any other host city ever, Beijing's venues are nearly ready for competition, with several staging test events in the next six months. To say that China is excited to show itself off to the world would be an understatement.
Fans of the Olympics should also be excited to learn that NBC will broadcast over 3,600 hours of coverage. The majority of it will be available via live streaming video online, a first for American viewers. This amount of coverage is more than the total of all previous Summer Games combined. Prime-time coverage will feature live swimming, gymnastics and beach volleyball.
My teammates and I competed in the Solana Beach Triathlon on Sunday morning. Our team, Active.com, won the mixed relay division and posted the best relay time overall. Swimmer, Carrie Smith handled the ¼-mile in 6 minutes, 59 seconds; our cyclist, Airey Baringer, biked the nine miles in 24:45; and I ran the 5K in 18:43 for a total team time of 50:27. Our performance ranked 15th place overall on the day.
Our team is satisfied with the outcome of the race and weve already begun planning our next event. I think we were most excited for the opportunity to compete as a team because weve each become used to training and competing on an individual basis. The camaraderie of the team environment proved motivational and I recommend this experience for anyone looking to get involved in the sport of triathlon or to gain valuable race-pace experience in any of the individual disciplines.
Individually, I set a PR because it was actually my first 5K distance. I felt extremely powerful throughout the 3.1 miles, and Ive recovered well already. Its interesting to note that on Sunday I raced at a six-minutes-per mile pace and on August 11 I will be attempting the Mount Disappointment 50-mile ultra marathon, which demands a conservative pace of approximately 10-minute miles of mixed running and fast hiking.
Here is a video I made of the event using the video editing technology, Jumpcut, which is a new feature of Active.com
It’s been a while since I last checked in so I thought I’d provide an update on my latest endurance endeavors. I’ve been getting my feet wet with triathlon as a new member of the Triathlon Club of San Diego. Saturday I participated in a club race which was my first-ever unofficial triathlon.
The beginner’s race caught my attention because of the short and manageable distances. The race began with a 300-meter swim in Glorietta Bay on beautiful Coronado Island. I wouldn’t describe the water quality as beautiful, but it was a quick swim none the less. I exited the water and entered the first transition (T1) among the first three athletes. My transition to the bike was quick and I was into the 11-mile bike portion in less than two minutes. The bike portion was staged in an open course so, right away, I had to wait for a traffic light to turn green. During this delay, other triathletes began to catch up but I pulled ahead of the group during the 5.5-mile out-portion of the bike while battling a headwind along The Strand. During the 5.5-mile back-portion of the bike, I used the tailwind to distance myself from the second-place position. T2 was accomplished in seconds and I was into the run so quickly that it felt like I was still cycling. That was my very first experience with running directly following a bike ride and I found it difficult to find a rhythm. The one-mile out-and-back course was quick and I didn’t see other competitors from the beginner’s group until I began to pass them during my last half-mile of the race.
I’m very excited that my first unofficial triathlon resulted in a victory, although I consider completing the race to be a victory in itself. I must accredit a successful outing to my mental preparation and visualization techniques that I practiced before the race even began. I knew that I was physically able and needed to put it all together; that is what made Saturday such an important day for my athletic career. I urge you all to act upon your dreams and aspire towards your goals whether they are social, athletic, educational or professional. Believing in oneself and seeing oneself reach those goals is just the first step. Now get out there and go after them.
This boost in confidence was timed just right as tomorrow my registration for the Mount Disappointment 50-mile trail run will be submitted. On August 11, I will join a group of ultra runners in the San Gabriel wilderness for the longest run of my career. Stay tuned for a pre-race blog on the Active.com Endurance Sports Blog.
To care for the tendinitis that developed in my Achilles tendon while training for a marathon, my sports medicine physician set me up with a treatment plan consisting of prescription anti-inflammatory medication, stretching and strengthening exercises. It is advised that an acute tendon injury can be cured within six weeks while chronic conditions take up to 8 to 10 months to heal.
With conservative treatment and non-impact cross-training, I hope to build upon the cardiovascular base that I developed while marathon training. This will allow my Achilles to repair while preparing for my first triathlon.
[S.M.A.R.T goal|http://active.typepad.com/.shared/image.html?/photos/uncategorized/2007/06/13/openwaterswim.jpg]Next week, I’ll be training in the ocean with an open-water swim. I grew up a fresh water swimmer and gym-pool swimmer, so I lack an abundance of experience with the intricacies of open-water swimming. After reading Rachel Cosgrove’s article, Survive the surf: Entrances and exits in open water swims, I realized that swimming in the ocean is more hazardous than swimming in a pool. I feel confident in pursuit of my latest endeavor after gaining a better understanding of the imminent risks. Since Cosgrove is a USAT Level 1 certified triathlon coach, her explanation of basic techniques are helpful for both training swims as well as race situations.
Triathletes who begin at the Sprint-distance level and aspire to race the Olympic distance remain confident during the small incremental increase in training and strategy needed to compete at the next level. The same gradual progression in difficulty holds true for Olympic-distance triathletes who advance to the Ironman 70.3 level. In stark contrast, there remains a 70.3-mile disparity between the Ironman 70.3 and full-length Ironman race that prevents scores of professional triathletes from advancing to the Ironman.
Triathletes will use competition at the Ironman 70.3 level as a base throughout the season before raising their training intensity for one specific Ironman event. In order to make this leap of faith, an athlete must be completely dedicated to training and race strategy while training twice as much as before. This may all change in the near future with the introduction of the Triathlon One O One series which launched last week in Bradenton, Fla.
Swim: 1.86mi (3km)
Bike: 80.6mi (130km)
Run: 18.6mi (30km)
Total: 101.06 miles (166km)
Although this distance is not new to the world of triathlon, the fact that the series is slated to expand next year and total 20 events worldwide by 2010 will have an impact on the industry. Offering a distance that bridges the gap between half and full Ironman will act as an incentive for Ironman 70.3 contestants to take another step forward. This may also create a level playing field for competition between Ironman and Ironman 70.3 specialists. The series is too young to predict which group will excel but it is certain that the $50,000 professional prize purse and the Triathlon One O One Championship featuring a $150,000 professional prize purse will lure plenty of contestants to the starting line.
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