Tag: multisport

Benefits of Swimming

1. Low Impact

  • Stress on joints is decreased by 90% in water
  • Even when your feet touch bottom there is les force on the body because of buoyancy
  • Great for rehab, arthritis, pregnancy, overweight, seniors….EVERYONE
  • Your body weight is 1/10 of what it would be on land.
  • It is the most injury-free sport there is

2. Builds Respiratory Fitness

  • A 12 week study showed an increase in oxygen consumption by 10% and an increase in stroke volume (the amount of blood pumped to the heart) increased by as much as 18%

3. Builds Muscle Mass

  • Muscle mass in the triceps increased by 23.8% in a 10 week study
  • All muscle groups are used

4. Alternative when injured

  • Maintains fitness levels
  • Aqua jogging
  • Because of the resistance, which is 12 times great than in air, of the water it makes the muscles works with out strain or impact like that on land

5. Calorie Burner

  • Swimming burns anywhere from 500-650 kcals per hour
  • In comparison to running it burns 11% fewer kcals and in comparison to cycling 3% fewer
  • However, this does not account for efficiency and for intensity….so the less efficient you are the more calories you burn
  • Be aware that heart rate decreased 10 beats per minute e in water and max heart rate decreased by 10-30 beats….it is believed this is due to the lower water temperature and the lesser pull of gravity in water.

6. Increases Lung Capacity

  • The need to hold your breath while swimming trains your lung capacity
  • This increases stamina and change heart rates
  • Great for asthma

7. Increases Flexibility

  • Increases mobility
  • The body is able to do stretches more easily than on land

8. Family Affair

  • The entire family can do it!
  • Everyone enjoys a day in the water…by the pool at the beach
  • It encourages health and fitness for the entire family

9. It is a lifetime Activity

  • Due to its low impact it can be done through all stages of life.
  • USMS- masters swimming…has age groups of 100-104!

10. It’s Relaxing

  • Water is soothing psychologically
  • There is a meditative quality about being able to just swim…float on your back
  • There is no noise and distraction of life on land

11. Improves Posture

  • Swimming strengthens your stabilizing muscles and works rotationally…therefore, strengthening your core and postural muscles

12. Lifesaving Skill

  • Swimming is a necessary life skill that everyone should possess
  • Open water, pool swimming, etc…

13. “YOU ARE A SWIMMER”

  • the fact that you can call yourself a swimmer is a reward in itself!

10 Tips to Prepare for Your First Triathlon

  1. Research! Know the distances and the course. As a newbie short distance are best to start with. The more prepared you are the less worry and anxiety you will have on race day. If you can practice on the course ahead of time then do it. Or drive the course so you know what to expect. If you are unable to do either then at the very least study the course maps, elevations, and go to your pre-race meeting with any questions.
  2. Practice swimming in the open water. Many athletes are very comfortable in the pool but the open water throws many new elements at you. Buddy up and practice ahead of time. If you are wearing a wetsuit make sure to practice in it at least 2-3 times before race day.
  3. Determine your race gear early and practice in it! This includes shoes, race kit, hat, etc. Get comfortable with your attire!
  4. Bring “extras”. Extra clothing on race day to stay warm and to change into post race, extra food to munch, and extra fluids to sip before race.
  5. Seek advice from experienced coaches/athletes. Pick 1-3 trusted sources and learn from them. Use their advice to help guide your training and racing strategies.
  6. Practice running off the bike often. This is a big shocker if you don’t practice it. Even just running for 10-15’ after each bike ride will make a difference come race day.
  7. Don’t try anything new on race day. No need to change your sports-nutrition, your breakfast, or attire, etc on game day. It is easy to get caught up in what everyone else is doing. When race day comes, everything should have been tested and dialed in. Follow your game plan.
  8. Pick a location to meet your friends/family post race. It can get busy and the worst is not being able to find your loved ones after a phenomenal race!
  9. Get your bike tuned. Make sure your bike gears, chain ring, tires, etc are cleaned and up to date. Make sure to book your tune-up appointment early to ensure the shop can get you in!
  10. Have fun!!! Race day is about celebrating!

Tempo Trainers…What are they and why do I need to know how to use one?

If you are a swimmer you have realized there are many…MANY aspects to our sport. Understanding the ability to combine stroke rate (tempo) and distance per stroke in order to increase speed and power output in swimming is very important. Being able to utilize this knowledge with understanding the biomechanics, physiology and training zones is also instrumental in being a successful swimmer.

Those are a lot of big words and we haven’t even gotten in the pool to start stroke mechanics yet! That’s why you hopefully have a coach or an instructor to help you in your swimming. From the beginner, to novice, to elite swimmer… we ALL need instruction in this great sport!

A few years back a scientist from New Zealand developed a little device that has made swimming more fun, more exact and more about the science of the sport and physiology. The Tempo Trainer (TT).

The TT is a little blue device that hooks onto your goggle strap or in your swim cap and basically is a mini metronome. It “beeps” at whatever setting you choose and basically….it sets your “cadence” or “tempo” in swimming. By understanding your combination of TEMPO and STROKE COUNT in swimming, you will be able to increase power and speed in your swimming.

For example: I want as much “distance per stroke” as I can for each lap I swim. So, it is better to take 15 strokes than it is 18. I ALSO want my tempo to be as efficient and fast as I can. By combining the two: tempo and stroke count… I am able to pull more water faster… which makes me a more powerful swimmer.

There is a lot of science in swimming and an even greater amount when discussing biomechanics AND training zones. But, the best thing you can do is learn to use the TT and how to make it applicable in your swimming goals.

USAT Level II Triathlon Coach Teresa Nelson and Outdoor Recreation Coach Brandyn Roark will be doing a Tempo Trainer clinic in November so this will be a perfect place for you to start! Email Teresa at tnelson@sacdt.com or Brandyn at broark@sacdt.com for more details or to ask more about the tempo trainer.

Hawaii 70.3 Triathlon – SAC Athlete Results

On Saturday, June 4th Seattle Athletic Club was represented in Kona, Hawaii at the Hawaii 70.3 triathlon. The course consisted of a 1.2 mile ocean swim, a 56 mile bike ride on the Ironman championship course with the winds and heat delivering as always, and a 13.1 mile run through the Mauna Lani golf course with a spectacular view of the ocean.

Each athlete trained and worked hard utilizing the coaches, the swim conditioning, cycle class, pilates lessons, and massage therapist at the SAC. Congrats to the following members/employees:

  • Bridget Jones – 5:05 and 5th in her division qualifying her for the Vegas World 70.3 championships.
  • Mark Webb – 4:46 for his fastest 70.3 to date and a great lead-up to Ironman CDA in just a few short weeks.
  • Tom Camp – 6:11. So much stronger with more experience going into the race this year!
  • Amanda Camp – Had an amazing performance dropping time in all three disciples from the previous year and landing herself a finish time of 6:38.
  • Kirsten Nesholm – Broke 6 hours with fantastic overall performance with a finish time of 5:50.
  • Bri Cooper – Stayed strong and positive after switching out 3 flats in the heat of Hawaii. Way to finish proudly! 6:48 (and with 42 minutes of flat tires).
  • Karissa Lackey- Had an amazingly quick swim and bike! Finishing in 6:11.

If you are interested in training with a team or individual coaching please contact Teresa Nelson for more information.

Seattle Athletic Club Runners Take on the Mercer Island Half Marathon!

Let the race season begin!!!

Kicking off the 2011 local race season, we had an amazing showing at the Mercer Island 5K, 10K and half Marathon. And a super kick-off it was with over 32 athletes racing, we were a pack to be reckoned with! The sun was shining and so were all of our athletes with some superb performances! Plenty of fantastic races, course PR’s, top placements, and race debuts made it a very memorable day for all!

While there was plenty of pre and post race laughter and kidding around, the MI courses are no joke! The courses have more ups, downs, turns, and bends in them than a roller-coaster! And just when you think that you have hit all the hills and rollers you could, there is that last little steep climb to the finish that is placed there like a bad joke but oh so exhilarating when you crest the top and sprint that 30yds down to the finish line!

Congrats to all of those who raced your performances were amazing and inspiring out there! And of course always a big thanks to the support systems out there cheering them all on! Your cheers of encouragement are the secret weapon that kept all the racers charging up those hills to the finish line! It would’ve been that much more mentally difficult out there without all of that positive energy to keep our athletes moving forward. Your cheers are what helped to give all the racers that boost when we really need it out there!
We look forward to seeing you all out there at the many races to come this season creating more fabulous memories!!!

SAC’s roster of speedy racers – keep up the great work!
½ Marathon:

  • Amanda Camp – 2:00:16 (9:11)
  • Chuck Cathey – 1:43:45 (7:55)
  • Bridget Jones Cressman – 1:35:24 (7:17)
  • Ethan Morris – 1:54:20 (8:44)
  • Patricia Nakamura – 1:51:12 (8:29)
  • Mike Podell – 1:31:25 (6:59)

10K:

  • Chad Baker – 49:51 (8:02)
  • Mark Longman – 52:16 (8:25)
  • Elizabeth Martin – 47:48 (7:42)
  • Kirsten Nesholm – 44:20 (7:08)
  • Lisa Ohge – 51:08 (8:14)
  • Tammi Westphal – 59:14 (9:32)

5K:

  • Teresa Nelson – 22:25 (7:14)

Strength Training for Endurance Athletes

Endurance training works one of two physiological energy production systems in our body; the aerobic cardio respiratory system, while resistance or strength training works our anaerobic energy system. Energy is used primarily in the muscle fibers, often referred to as the slow twitch and fast twitch fibers. The aerobic system trains our type I muscle fibers, which are more densely packed with mitochondria which utilize oxygen to make ATP. Meanwhile, the type II resistance fibers create ATP in the absence of oxygen by splitting molecules. Since many sports and other events rely more heavily on one type of fiber more than the other, athletes and the general public often train for that specificity. Most the population is composed of each fiber type by a 50:50 split, but specificity in training can shift the ratio of fibers either way slightly.

What happens when an endurance runner trains not just for their endurance abilities but also for strength simultaneously?

There have been multiple studies on this topic, with some studies suggesting that training simultaneously with both strength and endurance takes away from the optimal performance of one to improve the other, meaning you can be highly trained for endurance or just moderately trained for both strength and endurance, or vice versa. However, in opposition to many of those studies, others have tweaked the study method in finding how both can be trained for the benefit of improving upon an already trained ability. That is to say, if a runner was to train aerobically and then perform strength exercises used in running, would they improve? In the Journal of Strength and Conditioning, one of many studies was conducted on well trained endurance runners on how the addition of strength training to endurance training would affect stride ability. Groups were assigned to a periodized sport specific strength conditioning program with endurance (strength exercises changed each week), a consistent sport specific strength conditioning program with endurance (same workout), and an endurance only group. They found that the combination of periodized strength conditioning program with endurance training greatly resisted fatigue in overall strides than both the other groups. The exercises were sport specific to running, including squats, calf raises, hamstrings, and others. Many studies done on cyclists, soccer players, and rowers suggest the same findings.

There are several things to note on how this training would optimize performance. Strength was done at sub maximal weights and moderate repetitions – never to fatigue. This type of training will train the muscles for more endurance prolonged use, while enhancing strength. In the case of the runners the addition of strength increases the threshold of fatigue that the muscles endure by improving power. More muscular strength in the leg muscles contribute to greater power in each stride the runner takes. With that said, the studies in which competitors improved both modes of exercise were all trained with sport specific muscle groups. For instance a competing runner would not want to bulk their upper body like a rower might; it would only take away from their running ability. Studies among the general population show that those who want to improve health should train both modes for better overall conditioning. Strength and endurance training does not seem to negate one or the other for improving health and rehabilitation, but for those with an athletic specific goal, remaining sport specific is key.

Tips to Become a Successful Multisport Athlete: #1 Consistency

There have been a handful of commonalities I have seen in athletes throughout 9 years of coaching that have lead to some reaching success or their goals sooner than others. Not one tip makes an athlete better than another, it is just a common base of similarities that has been recognized amongst athletes.

Consistency.
Making your training a priority regularly, starting early with base building and continually making your training a habit has lead to many athletes reaching their successes. Several athletes use the procrastination technique due to online programs such as 12 weeks to your first half ironman and such, and as this does get many to the starting line it is eliminating the importance of base training and there is very little room for error with such a short time frame (ie: illness, injury, etc.). When an athlete has been training consistently, lost time tends to have little to no effect on their performance due to the solid base they have established with their base training methodology.

If you are interested in beginning training, or you are ready to take your training to the next level, contact Teresa Nelson to begin.