Thank you for the questions you submitted last month! As always if you have them, shoot me an email or PM me on the social channels. I love the questions and I am happy to answer anything and everything. If I don’t know the answer, I know who to direct you to for it. Keep them coming!
Q: What do you think about Ironman changing up Kona?
A: I am going to challenge this question with a few questions for your consideration:
- Have you ever considered that Ironman should be thanked for keeping at least part of the World Championships in Kona?
- Do you truly believe that since you spend money there, that you deserve to be there?
- How much money do you think the Kona community actually receives from this event?
These are all questions that are easily researched. If you come from the thread that Ironman is the big bad emperor, I have a solution for you. Don’t race their events. Are they perfect? No. Show me who is. Again, don’t race their events if you don’t like them.
I think rotating the World Championships is interesting. I think it preserves our relationship with the residents of such a beautiful island that a small percentage of triathletes have treated like garbage, but are remembered for. I think it provides athletes around the world with greater access to compete in a World Championship. Kona isn’t easy to get to for a large percentage of athletes around the world. I think changing the location year to year is fun. And I think if your biggest issue is Ironman changing the format of the World Championships… you are having a pretty good day.
Q: How close to real life cycling is an online platform like Zwift?
A: Online platforms for cycling offer different experiences. I treat virtual cycling and road cycling as different entities. If you are riding a 25 mile online course in 60 minutes, I don’t even try to equate it to what you ride outside. I find that athletes often try to predict performance, which is really natural. I look at: what was the HR, how much time did we spend climbing, HR, and power. When climbing I don’t “count” elevation, I look at, how much time did we spend at XX cadence, XX heart rate, XX power. We find out how fast we ride, when we race! So to answer the question: there is a TON of value in these platforms, I treat them separately.
Q; I have a really hard time riding inside, I just like outside better. What do I do?
A: I don’t know many cyclists who don’t prefer to ride outside! I know a lot of cyclists who DO ride outside in the snow. I do a lot of inside riding all year round for a variety of reasons, safety being #1. Just because there are those of us who actually enjoy riding inside, it doesn’t mean we don’t like the outdoors, or are big video gamers (people can be so righteous, can’t they?).
I suggest finding a platform you like, there are a lot of them. Many offer scheduled group rides, the chance to ride with teams, friends, etc. If staying power is your issue, consider some entertainment. I only watch TV when I am riding my bike, and Netflix has some great shows (Note: watching TV and riding an online platform doesn’t mean there is something wrong with your brain). Music, podcasts, etc are a great way to help increase saddle time. Also: start small. I have started athletes out at a few 20 minute rides per week and grown from there!
If you belong to a gym that offers spinning classes, that is a great way to go. Spinning is actually how I elevated my cycling game. You don’t have to follow the class exactly, or you can. It’s a fun way to get the miles in.
Q: Where should I start with fueling for long course?
A: My #1 go to for comprehensive life nutrition and fueling plans is Registered Dietician Stevie. If you are going to invest in nutrition, I would invest in a Registered Dietician. Period.
If that’s not an option for you, here are some basic tips to get you started. From here you can titrate as you gain experience (remember that factors such as heat will +/- these numbers and ratios).
- Fluid: a good starting point for long rides is 24 ounces per hour. Some athletes need more, some need less. Starting here is a good bookmark for cycling. For long runs I start at 12-16 ounces an hour and go from there.
- Calories: 300 calories an hour or 50-60 grams of carbohydrates is also a good starting point for cycling. As mentioned before, some need more, some need less.
- Salt: this differs from person to person. Most drinks contain adequate salt, others don’t. Starting around 200 mg an hour is what I’d recommend. More on salt and electrolytes another day!
- What drink? These days there is a plethora of products that are great. In addition to using what works best with you, be able to utilize what it on the course of the race you are doing. You just never know.
Q: Do you offer stock training plans for Ironman?
A: No. Never. We don’t offer 8 week deals, stock plans, etc. We only work 1:1 with our athletes. Our focus is personalized coaching. Period (we are full for 2023, let me know if you are looking for a coach, I have some great recommendations). Some coaches have great pre designed plans, I would recommend Training Peaks as a place to find some great ones.
These were all I had time for this week, thanks so much for submitting!