Something About a Forest and Its Trees

We bought a studio! Sorry, let me rephrase…QT2 Systems, LLC bought a studio! A cycling studio. Ok, so I’m a little late with this. We bought it a year ago. It is exactly what we always wanted to do, but simply never saw as a feasible option, because the start-up costs would be such a tremendous obstacle. Well, sometimes feasibility has a way of working itself out. Somebody builds it out, exactly as you would have wanted it, creates a business around it, runs it, and then comes to a point where life simply takes them in a different direction than originally planned. That’s pretty much how we found ourselves with a studio.
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Strength Training Phases

Triathletes talk (a lot!) about swim-bike-run training. That can depend on coaching philosophy and individual training protocol. There is no one set periodization that should be followed for all individuals. A big mistake I see a lot of athletes (particularly with the bitter winters of the north east) do is scale back over the winter and arrive in April with a blank slate, scrambling to get fit for their first race in June. The problem with this is they have no foundation or groundwork to work upon to increase fitness safely without getting injured. April is too late to try and build a base to gain fitness from, work on skill development and spend time getting their race fueling protocol, bike fit, run shoes, wetsuit etc. in racing form.
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Keeping Your Hip Flexors Happy!

Imagine this scenario. You are in your final weeks of preparation for your A race - a 70.3 distance triathlon. This weekend, your Saturday ride is a preview of the bike course at race intensity followed by a short brick run. The race is a three hour drive from your house, and so you wake up and immediately hit the road. You get out of car and jump on your bike. You start easy for the first 10 minutes and then settle into your race pace. You finish the ride feeling good, grab your running shoes and set off for a quick 20 minute run. You are feeling strong, so you decide to kick it hard at the end. Training is done and so you hop in your car and make the three hour drive home, reflecting positively on how good your fitness is. That evening, you are feeling a little tightness in your hip flexors, the group of muscles which connect your upper legs to your lower back, hips and groin. You figure you’re just tired from the day and don’t think much of it. Off to bed for another day. You wake up a bit more stiff, but figure it will work it’s way out and so you set off on your session for the day - a 10 mile run with race-pace intervals. No time for a warm-up, you just start running. At the beginning of the run, you are feeling some pain in your upper legs and groin area, but it seems to ease up as the run goes, so you do the workout as planned and all seems ok. You head home and decide to rest, sitting on the couch. Then it happens, you go to stand up and feel a sharp pain in your hip and upper leg. You try to walk and the pain worsens. You can’t walk without a limp. Lifting your knee to your chest is difficult. You can’t hop on that leg. Now you are in a panic - what just happened????
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Manage Self Doubt. Don't Let It Manage You.

Self doubt can be an athlete’s worst nightmare. It can impact your workouts, keep you up at night, and taunt you on race day. At some point, all athletes will experience some form of self doubt in their career, and it's important to learn to fight these feelings so they don't debilitate us. As I always say, mental toughness isn't something athletes are born with it's something they learn over time and something there is ALWAYS room for growth in. Below are some tips when you are experiencing self doubt.
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Making the Runner-to-Triathlete Transition

One of the things that make triathlon so interesting is the diversity of the athletes who come to the sport. Triathlon can be thought of as the “melting pot” of all sport. There is not one athletic background that can “make” a triathlete. An advanced swimmer, cyclist, or runner, may have some advantage starting up in the sport, but the training approach, as well as the mental outlook, of what made them an advanced athlete in that sole sport, may have to be adjusted, once initiating triathlon training.
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Translating Pool Fitness to Open Water Success

We swim countless miles, staring at a black line, going back-and forth, back-and-forth, with lane lines on either side of us. And then we go and race, and gone is the black line. Gone are the walls, every 25 seconds. Gone are the lane lines that keep us on path. Gone is crystal clear water. Oh, and now there are what feels like, a few thousand people surrounding us, trying to occupy the same space! YIKES!
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And it's...back to the races!

After taking a little over 20 months off racing, first from burnout and then from injury, I have my first “race” coming up in a little over a week. (My least favorite distance too! The Olympic!) I have been reflecting lately, over both my absence from racing and my return to the sport and have come up with a top ten list of what I miss most (both good and bad) about racing!
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Indoor Training for Outdoor Results

The Northeast: the land of Spring Showers, Blistering summer heat, fantastic foliage, and snow…lots of snow. We get it all! Everyone has a favorite, of course, but who doesn’t love the changing of the seasons?! Answer: this guy! In my ideal world, we’d be constantly living at 65F, mostly sunny, light breeze. After all, minus some potentially cold waters, this would be ideal training weather! Nonetheless, this is New England and, because of the weather, the beat-up roads, and the road rage of rush hour traffic within a 50-mile radius of Boston, we spend time inside training.
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It All Started With A Bet

Follow Jackie Miller, one of our ORR coaches based in Sarasota, FL, on her journey back to Ironman racing after an extended period away. This is the first in the series!
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Periodization Defined

If you consider yourself to be anything beyond a “casual runner” or “beginner triathlete”, you probably have heard of the term “periodization”. Periodization is an important in training to ensure long term improvement, avoid plateaus, and make sure the athlete is in peak condition at the appropriate time in their season. Without periodization, an athlete can achieve solid fitness, but reaching their “peak potential” at the time they want it to happen, will be unlikely.
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Cycling
We bought a studio! Sorry, let me rephrase…QT2 Systems, LLC bought a studio! A cycling studio. Ok, so I’m a little late with this. We bought it a year ago. It is exactly what we always wanted to do, but simply never saw as a feasible option, because the start-up costs would be such a tremendous obstacle. Well, sometimes feasibility has a way of working itself out. Somebody builds it out, exactly as you would have wanted it, creates a business around it, runs it, and then comes to a point where life simply takes them in a different direction than originally planned. That’s pretty much how we found ourselves with a studio.
Triathletes talk (a lot!) about swim-bike-run training. That can depend on coaching philosophy and individual training protocol. There is no one set periodization that should be followed for all individuals. A big mistake I see a lot of athletes (particularly with the bitter winters of the north east) do is scale back over the winter and arrive in April with a blank slate, scrambling to get fit for their first race in June. The problem with this is they have no foundation or groundwork to work upon to increase fitness safely without getting injured. April is too late to try and build a base to gain fitness from, work on skill development and spend time getting their race fueling protocol, bike fit, run shoes, wetsuit etc. in racing form.
Imagine this scenario. You are in your final weeks of preparation for your A race - a 70.3 distance triathlon. This weekend, your Saturday ride is a preview of the bike course at race intensity followed by a short brick run. The race is a three hour drive from your house, and so you wake up and immediately hit the road. You get out of car and jump on your bike. You start easy for the first 10 minutes and then settle into your race pace. You finish the ride feeling good, grab your running shoes and set off for a quick 20 minute run. You are feeling strong, so you decide to kick it hard at the end. Training is done and so you hop in your car and make the three hour drive home, reflecting positively on how good your fitness is. That evening, you are feeling a little tightness in your hip flexors, the group of muscles which connect your upper legs to your lower back, hips and groin. You figure you’re just tired from the day and don’t think much of it. Off to bed for another day. You wake up a bit more stiff, but figure it will work it’s way out and so you set off on your session for the day - a 10 mile run with race-pace intervals. No time for a warm-up, you just start running. At the beginning of the run, you are feeling some pain in your upper legs and groin area, but it seems to ease up as the run goes, so you do the workout as planned and all seems ok. You head home and decide to rest, sitting on the couch. Then it happens, you go to stand up and feel a sharp pain in your hip and upper leg. You try to walk and the pain worsens. You can’t walk without a limp. Lifting your knee to your chest is difficult. You can’t hop on that leg. Now you are in a panic - what just happened????
Self doubt can be an athlete’s worst nightmare. It can impact your workouts, keep you up at night, and taunt you on race day. At some point, all athletes will experience some form of self doubt in their career, and it's important to learn to fight these feelings so they don't debilitate us. As I always say, mental toughness isn't something athletes are born with it's something they learn over time and something there is ALWAYS room for growth in. Below are some tips when you are experiencing self doubt.
One of the things that make triathlon so interesting is the diversity of the athletes who come to the sport. Triathlon can be thought of as the “melting pot” of all sport. There is not one athletic background that can “make” a triathlete. An advanced swimmer, cyclist, or runner, may have some advantage starting up in the sport, but the training approach, as well as the mental outlook, of what made them an advanced athlete in that sole sport, may have to be adjusted, once initiating triathlon training.
We swim countless miles, staring at a black line, going back-and forth, back-and-forth, with lane lines on either side of us. And then we go and race, and gone is the black line. Gone are the walls, every 25 seconds. Gone are the lane lines that keep us on path. Gone is crystal clear water. Oh, and now there are what feels like, a few thousand people surrounding us, trying to occupy the same space! YIKES!
After taking a little over 20 months off racing, first from burnout and then from injury, I have my first “race” coming up in a little over a week. (My least favorite distance too! The Olympic!) I have been reflecting lately, over both my absence from racing and my return to the sport and have come up with a top ten list of what I miss most (both good and bad) about racing!
The Northeast: the land of Spring Showers, Blistering summer heat, fantastic foliage, and snow…lots of snow. We get it all! Everyone has a favorite, of course, but who doesn’t love the changing of the seasons?! Answer: this guy! In my ideal world, we’d be constantly living at 65F, mostly sunny, light breeze. After all, minus some potentially cold waters, this would be ideal training weather! Nonetheless, this is New England and, because of the weather, the beat-up roads, and the road rage of rush hour traffic within a 50-mile radius of Boston, we spend time inside training.
Follow Jackie Miller, one of our ORR coaches based in Sarasota, FL, on her journey back to Ironman racing after an extended period away. This is the first in the series!
If you consider yourself to be anything beyond a “casual runner” or “beginner triathlete”, you probably have heard of the term “periodization”. Periodization is an important in training to ensure long term improvement, avoid plateaus, and make sure the athlete is in peak condition at the appropriate time in their season. Without periodization, an athlete can achieve solid fitness, but reaching their “peak potential” at the time they want it to happen, will be unlikely.