Tri Adventure Coaching Tips & Camp Wrap: Kim Beckinsale
Tri Adventure Cross Triathlon Camp December 2015 – The Wrap
If you could not make the camp you certainly missed out on a great weekend up here in lovely Noosa. There is nothing like getting together with a group of like-minded athletes who are prepared to test and challenge themselves in some unfamiliar environments in challenging weather conditions to take yourself to another level and set new goals for the season ahead. Attending camps like this one take some of the guesswork out of your preparation for Cross Triathlon and you may just find that you get what you need to not only finish your next race but achieve your goals.
Here are some coaching tips for those who missed out:-
Open Water Swimming
Almost 100% of triathlon events are conducted in open water, so where possible athletes should practice swimming in open water at least once a week. There are many variables to consider and becoming familiar with these can save you some time on race day. As the athletes on the camp found out there is no reason why you can’t do your drills in open water as well. Other things to consider including in your open water training sessions are running starts and exits as this is what you are likely to encounter in most off-road events.
Our focus at Tri Adventure is to develop the skills to ride safely, skilfully, and then work on riding speedily once you have mastered some of the basic skills. Then you will find that you will ride much faster and use much less energy than just trying to ride. Then once you have mastered the basic skills we suggest to never stop playing and having fun with some of these drills as you can always make them more challenging. Participants on the camp challenged themselves to execute a few drills on the bike that they may have done on the road before, however they found on the trails, because of the rough surfaces become significantly more challenging. They also soon realised that the riding position for mountain biking is at times very different to the ride bike, and having some knowledge of when and where to shift your weight can make a big difference when trails get tricky.
Just as I mentioned above that you can do your swimming drills in open water, you can do the same on the trails with your running drills. Just because you may be focusing on off road running in Cross Triathlon don’t throw these out with your old road running shoes. You can try your drills on a section of trail that you are familiar with especially when you are trying out your new trail running shoes. Yes, I strongly advise that you consider purchasing a pair of shoes that are specific for trail running that suit your running style and foot physiology. Participants on the camp learnt some new drills and yes, tried these on the trails.
Transitions for Cross Triathlon (Swim/Bike/Run)
Transitions are often referred to as the fourth discipline of Triathlon, so in an off-road triathlon having a good transition is still very important especially as you may choose to have more in your transition area than for your standard road Tri. So the longer it takes for you to get all your mountain biking gear on, the more time you will spend in transition, which means the harder you have to work to catch that time up. So practicing swim to bike and bike to run transitions should be factored into training schedule. At the camp athletes had an opportunity to practice transitions multiple times, with all the gear they would usually wear or use on race day, this includes making sure you have a way to carry personalised nutrition and hydration.
As well as practicing short transitions it is also a good idea to put into your training some swim to bike sessions and some bike to run sessions. These are referred to as brick sessions in triathlon and they definitely have a place in Cross Triathlon as well. Running off the bike especially on a really technical hilly course can be brutal if your legs are not conditioned to run after mountain biking.
To check out the camp video and photos from the camp visit the Tri Adventure Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/Tri-Adventure-209383835821196/?fref=ts
For more information about training for Cross Triathlon contact Kim at [email protected] or to find out more about Triathlon Training Groups and Club Training Events in Noosa look up the Noosa Tri Club website http://www.noosatriclub.com/