Friday, December 19, 2008
While we are on the topic of Hammer time, I am happy to report that I am riding weekly and consistenly at that! Right now a minimum of one ride a week is at the gym in a spin class. The spin workout makes me feel like I am hammering and the mental aspect is key. At least the group is getting me through an hour ride which says a lot since my ride time consisted of a 35 minute commute while I was in marathon training. Even though it is off season time it is always important to set goals. For me that is incorporating several rides a week while I increase my run mileage and prepare for Boston. Yup. I changed my mind and decided I would race Boston. So...what's your goal?
Get out and swim, ride, run, or just do something!
P.S. We got a great new energy bar in this week: 1st Endurance EFS Peanut Butter Chocolate Bar. It is gluten free and yes it taste good! Check out 1st Endurance's cool website.
Thursday, December 18, 2008
First of all, wearing swim fins increases the amount of resistance your muscles experience as you kick, guaranteeing you'll put your leg muscles to full use. Stronger legs, and that additional strength will carry over into normal swimming when you're not wearing your fins.
A second thing you gain by using fins is improved ankle flexibility from the extra force the fins place on your ankle as you kick. Increased ankle flexibility will result in a more efficient flutter kick through better angles of attack on the water. When you are unable to fully flex your ankles into a streamlined position the ankles remain somewhat bent, catching water instead of propelling the body through it. Wearing swim fins actually forces the ankles to fully extend into a straight line, similar to a ballet dancer on point. This new found flexibility, just like the increased strength, will still be there when the fins come off.
Another benefit of using fins is the ease of holding a better body position. This allows you to focus on other parts of your technique, such as body roll or timing. The strongest swimmers achieve a fully horizontal position in the water, which leads to the most efficient kicking and paddling, moving them along at optimum speed. On the other hand, a weaker swimmer's back half tends to hang lower in the water than the upper half. So instead of achieving good forward thrust, the swimmer is continually thrusting partially upward, rather than fully forward.
Since wearing swim fins increases leg strength and flexibility, the lower half of the body is better able to remain level with the upper body, a much better position for achieving forward thrust. This posture automatically improves speed.
Fins, as you probably know, come in all different shapes, colors, fastenings, and sizes. And all of these different fins do different things for you. We carry three types of fins at J&A: CrossBlade Training Fins, SplitFins & FlexFins (all made by TYR).
CrossBlade fins are an multi-purpose training fin. The intermediate blade length combines the attributes of both short and long blade fins. These fins increase tempo and speed while still offering increased resistance to build leg power. Whether you seek technique work or increased power, the CrossBlade is a great training fin.
Unlike conventional fins that force the foot to push water in a flat plane, the unique split blades slice through the water with two winged surfaces creating lift and forward propulsion much like a propeller. SplitFins operate more efficiently than 'paddle' bladed fins by mimicking a user's natural kicking cadence. This ensures a more even distribution of resistance during the upswing and down thrust motions of the kicking cycle, working both muscle groups equally to help build leg strength and power output.
Flexfins are designed to increase leg strength and foot flexibility. Designed for fin swimming & training, they provide a stiff foot pocket while maintaining a flexible blade. They help to build leg strength as well as increasing ankle & foot flexibility.
Let me know if you give fins a try!
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Although swimming at Barton is fun, it's more fun when you have friends to join you. Unfortunately, there are still people who are hard to get into the water. For those people we have three tactics...
Friday, December 12, 2008
And now is the time to buy! Get 15% off all nutritional products in our holiday sale. Stock up for yourself or grab a few for healthy stocking stuffers!
There are so many things going on with the holiday season! Don't forget to save some time for yourself and get a workout in...even 20 minutes counts. It is going to be a great weekend so get out and ride!
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Michael tested five very cool watches in the story titled, "Physical Culture - Gear Test, Twin Digital/Analog Watches" in the Fashion & Style section of the paper. You can check out the full article HERE.
I wonder if he gets to keep all the watches, especially when one is valued at almost 2k!
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
What do the people in these pictures have in common? They all like bikes but more importantly they all smell from a lack of bathing.
Good news, I have a solution for those of you who have encountered this problem, Action wipes (ActionWipes.com). Action wipes are these great wet wipes that allow you to clean off the sweat and grime without taking a shower. I'm a little disappointed I didn't have them at the time when any of these pictures were taken but better late then never.
I secretly tested the action wipes the other night after a core workout. It was kind of fun to look at all the dirt those things wiped off my skin without wasting a drop of water.
They worked so well Michael didn't even seem to notice I hadn't showered. This is a good thing b/c he is always quick to complain that I smell like a swimming pool, smell like the back yard, etc. I therefore conclude the action wipes did their job.
Action wipes are also great for those of us who like to fit in workouts during the lunch hour. Your workout to desk transition will be improved significantly without the need to shower. No worries as you run an extra mile, you now have the time.
The biggest negative I found was the residual chemicals on my hands. Since I was about to cut veggies for dinner I didn't feel the action wipes got me adequately prepared. But, if you don't have water around these will do the trick.
The key here is to think outside the box with these wipes. We see the obvious post workout benefits but I want to point out another target audience, Mr. Gold_for_Life. Yes, you know who you are, the person who has racked up a life time of frequent flyer miles due to 20+ trips to Asia. If this is you or you know someone like this, listen up...
These wipes are essential for your trans-Pacific flights. Have you ever landed in LAX and thought to yourself, "Do I really smell that bad?" The answer is YES and the kid next to you on your flight to Austin is going to notice the guy who smells. No problem, your action wipes are not a liquid and you can bring them on the plane. You should use them! It will definitely increase the likelihood of getting hug from your spouse when you arrive home.
PS: I'll buy a Clif Bar for the first person who identifies each of these pictures (No, you can not identify a picture you are in).
Friday, December 5, 2008
Thursday, December 4, 2008
Whatever your goals are as an athlete, you need a place to record your workouts & a place to record how your body responds to training from day to day. These diaries can be used to:
Look for these books at the shop too...
Big Blue Book of Bicycle Repairs
The Art of Wheel Building
Not only are these books good for your own personal library, but they make great gifts, too! Happy reading!
Wednesday, December 3, 2008
Sounds good but the real test is to see how it tastes when you are actually on the go. I decided to use the nuun as an excuse to go battle the afternoon winds and plopped a nuun into my water bottle. Or... maybe I just wanted a reason to watch the nuun fizz. After all, who doesn't like fizzy bubbly?
Available soon at J&A!
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
It’s that time of year again! Long, slow base miles, indulging in off-season diets, and oh yes, trying to find that perfect present for the special endurance athlete(s) in your life.
Luckily for you, the folks at Jack & Adam’s have compiled a comprehensive list of creative gift ideas for anyone who likes to swim, bike, run. From bike computers to calendars, there is something for every athlete here at the shop!
First on the list is The Cute Commute Calendar featuring local
Another local charity selling calendars at J&A's is the Down Syndrome Association of Central Texas. Brad Pitt, Nolan Ryan, Andy Roddick and J&A owner Jack Murray will help you keep your days straight from now until next January.
And if you're in need of stocking stuffers, we have a plethora of nutritional items, so skip the candy canes and include chocolate mint Gu instead! Pack in some Tri Stickers and J&A water bottles for a stocking any triathlete will love.
Of course, there is the never fail, always appreciated Jack & Adam’s gift certificate! Charge it up with any amount from $5 to $10000!
$12 and Under
The Down Syndrome Calendar 2009 featuring Jack (of J&A's), Brad Pitt, Nolan Ryan and others. ($12.00 fundraiser)
Easy Laces ($5.00)
Jack & Adam’s Water Bottle ($2.99)
140.6, 70.3, Tri Stickers ($2.00)
Assortment of Nutrition
The Cute Commute Calendar ($14.99)
Pure Sport Sports Drink Starter Kit
The Triathlete’s Training Bible by Joe Friel
Park Tool Bike Shop Barbeque Tool Set ($20.99)
J&A Cargo Wedge Saddle Bag ($14.99)
Every Town Needs a Trail by Jen Ohlsen ($39.95)
Cateye Strada Cadence ($45.99)
Planet Bike Superflash Blinkie ($23.99)
Pearl Izumi Beanies ($24.99+)
Rocket Shower Showerless Clean-up Kit ($25.99)
Topeak Joe Blow Floor Pump ($36.99)
Innovations Tire Repair and Inflation Saddle Bag ($25.99)
SLS Compression Sox ($57.95)
Rocket Science Rocket Transition Bag ($149.99)
Helmet: Giro Ionos, Atmos;
Aero Helmet: Giro Advantage 2, Louis Garneau Rocket
Garmin-Chipotle Slipstream Team
Trigger Point Total Package ($139.99)
Cycleops Pro Fluid Trainer + Riser Block ($399.99, $22.99)
Garmin 305 Multisport ($450)
Garmin 705 Edge ($499.99)
SUUNTO Complete Training Monitoring Tool for Triathlon
Race Wheels (Zipp Special 20%
A NEW BIKE
Friday, November 21, 2008
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
For some reason our shop worker refused to speak when we asked them questions. Instead they dashed around the store, apparently filling TYR bags for a customer and merely gave a "thumbs up" or "thumbs down" to our questions.
What do you think of the new gloves? Thumbs up
We noted the ease at which the shop worker gripped onto product and quickly tossed it into a bag. From this we have concluded the grip on the gloves is useful and the fit was snug enough to allow pinpoint grabbing.
What do you think of the fleece arm warmers? Thumb up
Since the arm warmers did not fall down to reveal the presence of birth marks, tattoos, hair, or striated muscle (which could be used to distinguish employees) we believe these arm warmers stay in place very well.
Do you like the LG Balaclava hood? Thumb up / thumb down
We did not know how to interpret this since we were unable to identify the shop worker during the time they were in the shop.
We do know the shop worker (or imposter shop worker) was warm while entering the shop on a chilly Monday morning. This deduction is based upon the commuting method (i.e. bike) used to get away from the shop.
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Looking for a fun way to end your season? Then check out the Dirty Du Weekend! The Dirty Du is a unique, fun, and laid-back event. The perfect end to the long tri season. Come spend the weekend at beautiful Rocky Hill Ranch. The weekend activities include 12 & 3 mile trail runs, a cyclecross race, camping, campfires, cookouts, flybar contest, bike toss, and of course, The Original Dirty Du. This event is perfect for relays too. So find a friend to bike or run and take part in a central Texas multi-sport legend. November 22-23, 2008.
Here's the schedule:
Friday, November 21st, 2008
10 AM - 7 PM Packet Pickup & Late Registration at Jack and Adam's Bicycles, 1210 Barton Springs Dr., Austin, TX
Saturday, November 22nd, 2008
7:30 AM - 8:30 AM - Late Registration & Out of Town Packet Pickup at Rocky Hill Ranch
9 AM - 12 Mile Trail Run Start
9:30 AM - 5K Trail Run Start
2 PM - 5 PM - Late Registration & Out of Town Packet Pickup at Rocky Hill Ranch
3 PM - Cyclo-cross Start
7 PM - Fly Bar Competition
8:30 PM - Bike Toss Competition
Sunday, November 23rd, 2008
7:30 AM - 8:30 AM Late Registration & Out of Town Packet Pickup at Rocky Hill Ranch
9 AM Dirty Du Start
12 PM Awards Presentation (tentative - awards will be done after the final finisher)
Saturday will also see the Inaugural Austin Duathletes BUDDY DU starting at 10:30AM. This is a separate event from the Dirty Du Weekend, but it takes place at the same venue. The Buddy Du is a run-bike format that is completed with a teammate, but scored in a unique fashion...READ MORE...
Monday, November 17, 2008
First, I would never mountain bike with this light. Though it throws a fairly strong forward beam there isn’t a lot of peripheral light being projected. So it wouldn’t be safe for say the greenbelt or other really technical trails. I also don’t think it would be safe to count on it to light the way for speeds of 17+ mph. Just not enough forward illumination for that.
But alas I am a commuter riding a mix of the Hike and Bike trail and residential streets. For these conditions - I like the light. The beam is rather focused, as I mentioned, and does a nice job of giving me thirty / forty yards or so of visibility on a dark Hike and Bike trail. Once I am in neighborhoods I find it to perform equally well. The button which controls beam brightness is on top of the handlebar mounted light (you can also helmet mount the light). The light has the following brightness options / features: 4 hour burn time at 100% intensity, 6 hour burn time at 30% intensity and a flashing feature. I like the flashing feature at dusk to increase my visibility to motorists. Generally I run the high beam in all other scenarios. I have yet to see the low battery indicator light flash at me.
The light and battery pack mount neatly to the bike. (see attached photos). They are snug and do not rattle which I appreciate. I used some velcro closures to mount the cable that runs from the light to the battery pack. These won’t rub paint from the frame or slip. These weren’t included but are something you can pick up from the shop.
As for battery life and charging - I like that you can leave it plugged in and it will shut itself down once fully charged. So you can basically charge it anytime you aren’t riding it. The bummer is, due to the placement of the charging socket, you need to remove the battery from the bike to charge it. Minor inconvenience in the grand scheme of things. It’s not like you’re having to walk both ways uphill in the snow for a crust or bread and a sip of water or something.
Overall I like the design and performance. You might be able to get more light at a comparable price but I’m not one to know. You would need to factor in that this product has a lifetime guarantee, which is worth something. I have no fear of sending a product I’ve beat the hell out of back to the manufacturer and saying, “new one please.” So if you are a commuter or a roadie / triathlete (that needs something to start or finish your ride with) this light is a good choice. If you are a mountain biker or someone that wants to hammer first thing in the AM or late into the evening I would go with something brighter and beefier – read more expensive.
Adam Butler – crash test dummy and full time bike commuter.
Friday, November 14, 2008
As I grow as a triathlete, I am learning I need to use my enthusiasm and strength for swimming and channel it into my weaker sports...cycling and running. It has taken me about 6 years of triathlon seasons to start to realize this. So for you non-swimmers, now is the time to channel your enthusiasm and strength into your swim! The off season is a great time to work on swimming technique...got to love those drills!
Not motivated you say? Even as a swimmer I'm sometimes unmotivated to get in the water. To stay motivated I think of fun ways to keep it interesting - like a new suit, for instance!
Check out the cool suit I tried on at the shop today! It was super comfortable with a nice, fun, funky color. We have a large selection of suits at J&A's...some even on the sale rack!
How do you stay motivated? We want to know!
Thursday, November 13, 2008
She can really use your support and it will only take a minute to vote. If you're not already an Etsy shopper check it out, because there are some really great items on there.
Vote HERE. Voting ends FRIDAY at 11:30AM.
De Soto definitely knows what they are doing when it comes to women's tri shorts. The women’s Carrera & Carrera Low Rise are two of the best sellers in the shop because of their feminine look, virtually invisible pad, drawstring-elastic waist and the elastic free band around the thigh.
With its new 2-inch contrast waist & drawcord, the 2009 is sure to live up to De Soto's reputation!
Here is a sneak peak at what’s coming:
2009 Carrera with new 2-inch contrast waist (with drawcord)
2009 Carrera Low Rise (1.5 inch lower waist line)
Friday, November 7, 2008
On another note, the other day I thought I lost all three pairs of my sunglasses...YUP! All three. I pretty much gave up looking and decided maybe it was time to just get some new ones to go with the upcoming running race season. I feel fitter and better than I have in a long time so why not get a new pair of sunglasses as a reward for my new found fitness. Okay, I was also thinking that way because we got our fall pre-season order in from Tifosi Optics. Pretty cool! Our Tifosi display is fully stocked! Check these out:
Cool shades! Tifosi VogelNew items coming this weekend to the shop:
More Louis Garneau winter clothes
For the ladies: Craft Long sleeve women's base layer in earth color (pretty purple to me)
Safety First: Neon Yellow Jackets for the dark mornings!Still have one last race of the season? Check out the recent arrival of Continental 700c Tubies to spark up those race wheels!
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
T1 was interesting. As usual the change tent was very crowded by the time I exited the swim so I decided not to even bother. Lucky for me, a volunteer came running over to help me, "You're Michelle from Austin, right?" Holy cow, this was the coolest thing, someone recognized me. As we stood outside the tent there were others cheering for me as we tried to force my arm warmers on, "Go Austin." Even with a slow swim, I felt like a rock star.
The bike at IM FL is very flat and fast. I saw a lot of my Austin friends along the route and made some friends with other people. That seems to happen during IM. It's a long ride and you tend to see people over and over again. An old co-worker of mine talked with me about my new Felt bike and told me another girl had questioned him using a disk. I met a guy from Corpus who remarked there were a lot of Austin people here. I scolded one guy for tossing his gel wrapper and gilt him into holding onto the others in his hand.
T2 was just as exciting as T1, another Austinite ran over to help me. This time I was inside the tent with plenty of room to change into my favorite running shorts and put on some sunblock.
I saw former Austinite and Pro Triathlete Michael Lavato as I crossed the line and cheerfully told him that I'd gone under 11.
Among my Austin friends there were a lot of PR's on Saturday. There were also a number of Austin athletes racing their first IM who had amazing times. Keeping a positive attitude no matter what the day brings is important, even if things aren't going your way.
Thanks to everyone who encouraged their friends out there on Saturday, much appreciated!
Friday, October 31, 2008
The shop fall/winter preseason clothing orders arrived just in time for the cooler mornings. Super cute beanies, as well as some awesome pullovers from Pearl Izumi. We also have tights and for those of you early or late riders check out the new bright neon yellow jackets. Safety first!
Also in stock are the new Pearl Izumi Insulator Jackets which are so stylish you can wear them even when you are not riding!
Take a look:
Women’s Insulator Jacket (Olive Green & Orange or Silver & White)
Men’s Insulator Jacket in Brown
Thursday, October 30, 2008
The 2 loop swim in the Gulf of Mexico is a little bit different than most triathlons in that after the first loop, the participants must exit the water and do the turnaround on the beach. The bike portion is flat and fast, but wind could be a challenge. The tri concludes with a 2 loop marathon course.
Below is part of the schedule for IM Florida and it's what you can expect at most Ironman events: (FYI, there's no race day registration!)
Friday, October 31, 2008
- 7:00 a.m.-10:00 a.m.-Gatorade bag check-in. Representatives from Gatorade will be on hand to watch your gear and give away some Gatorade, water bottles and other goodies.
- 7:00 a.m.-10:00 a.m.- Blue Seventy Wetsuit Test and Fit Sessions
- 8:00 a.m.-11:00 a.m.-Athlete pancake breakfast
- 9:00 – 11:00 a.m. – 2009 Ford Ironman Registration for 2008 registrants ONLY
- 10:00 a.m.-4:30 p.m.-Ford Ironman Marketplace opens
- 10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.-Bike and gear bag check-in
Note: There will be no bike inspection.
Saturday, Nov. 1, 2008
- 5:00 a.m.-Athletes begin arriving at the transition zone-Boardwalk Beach Resort
- 7:00 a.m.-Race Starts
- 7:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.-NA Sports Merchandise Store open
- Midnight-Race Finishes
Sunday, Nov. 2, 2008
- 7:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.- NA Sports Merchandise Store open with 2008 Finisher gear!
- 9:00 a.m.-11:00 a.m.-2009 Ford Ironman Florida Registration opens-Ford Ironman Marketplace, photo ID required
- 9:00 a.m.-11:00 a.m.-2009 Ford Ironman World Championship Registration-Ford Ironman Marketplace
- 11:05 a.m.- Ford Ironman World Championship Roll down-Ford Ironman Marketplace
- 5:30 p.m.-Philadelphia Insurance Awards Banquet
- 8:00 p.m.-Post-race celebration-Spinnaker Beach Club
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
If you are anywhere near as close to being as big a bike geek as me, you were at the shop last Sunday morning when Felt brought in a sneak peak of their 2009 line.
AR2's, F2's, ZW1's oh my!
For the ride I snagged the ZW1, a women's specific full carbon beauty with 2009 Dura Ace that comes in at a svelte 13.91 lbs. This would be an appropriate time to insert a ::girl squeal::
Holy Moly, after my 20 mile loop I was ready to add this baby to my quiver (of bikes) at home... I mean, after all, I don't have a carbon bike... yet.
Stiff, smooth, and light, what more could a girl ask for?
After returning the bike (ok, so there might have been a little tug o' war in the process) I had a chance to lap the parking lot on an AR2 (um, WOW?!?), the Virtue 2 (I've always wanted to take up mountain biking...), the Garmin-Chipotle Slipstream team issue F1 (oh, so pro :P), and the fashion fixie Dispatch (in two fancy smancy color schemes for '09).
Here I am dorking out on the Slipstream beauty
Fashion Fixie Saddles Anyone?
Can I ride all of them? Pretty Please??
Thanks Q and Jolly for bringing us a sneak peak of the 2009 Felts.
Steve Jolly, Felt Rep Extraordinaire
Sooo.... When are you bringing the 2010 bikes by?