Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Preparing for the Austin Tri & Lady Bird Lake

Only two weeks left until the Austin Tri! If you're part of this sold-out event, then here are some racing tips from Austinite and Pro Triathlete, Kelly Handel Williamson. From the Newsletter Archives, August 2008. Click HERE to sign up for the Jack & Adam's Monthly Newsletter for more great info like this.

Swim like a River: Preparing for the Austin Tri & Lady Bird Lake

Whether you are an Austin Triathlon veteran from 2007 or a triathlon rookie, Lady Bird Lake is a very nice swimming hole for a race. It is situated around the 'hub' of exercise in Austin, with the running trail lining its shores. Scouting this course is not too difficult, as it is essentially one large rectangle, most of which you should be able to view from shore before plunging in.

After setting up your transition area, head towards the swim start with plenty of time to spare (20-30 minutes before your wave takes off). Find out the wetsuit call. This is sometimes not made until race morning, so be sure you know if wetsuits are legal or not. In making your decision, remember a few things. While they are faster (up to 2-3 minutes over the course of a mile), they are very warm; so if you tend to get hot easily, consider how warm the day is and if you may overheat. Acknowledge what is most important to you, speed or comfort?

Scope the course. Look at the path you'll be swimming and try to see all the buoys you will pass. Note their color, location and also if there are any 'large, immobile' objects beyond these buoys. These large objects can be used to 'sight off' in case your view of the buoy is blocked from fellow swimmers, waves or sun. If you can, count the number of buoys you will 'pass' before making a turn. Try to locate the turn buoys, sometimes these are a different color or shape. Decide based on weather if you need dark or light goggles. An overcast day may call for lighter lenses, while a sunrise on the horizon may require dark lenses to eliminate glare.

This race will be a deep water start, so you'll be treading water. With about a minute to go, try to start to move to a 'horizontal' position. When many people standing in a small space go from vertical to horizontal, crowding entails. Try to 'mark your space' before the gun goes off, so you are ready to move forward. Start to the 'outside' of the crowd, so you can make a diagonal line to the first buoy or turn buoy. If you are directly in front of the buoy, you may have to fight your way 'around' it because people will converge there. Starting to the outside or to the back of the crowd may eliminate some fighting when swimming.

When the gun goes off, go hard at the start but be careful of maxing yourself out. Many people will sprint and fade quickly. If you monitor your intensity to a strong but sustainable pace, you will likely catch people as you swim and gain confidence in the process. These first few strokes focus on getting into a rhythm, and do not worry about sighting too much until you settle in and the congestion calms down. Once you feel comfortable, begin to sight often (every 6-8 strokes or as needed) and each time you look up try to get a glimpse of your guide buoys. Do not blindly trust the feet in front of you!

As you near the finish, start to think about what you will be doing next. Once you feel the ground (the swim ramp or the bottom of the lake), start to stand and get vertical. Catch your breath, and immediately begin to unzip the wetsuit (if you have one), remove the cap and goggles and get running to transition. As you run, think about the steps you'll do in preparation for the bike leg...congratulations, you are already 1/3 finished!

Kelly Handel has been racing triathlons professionally for 7 years.

Check out Kelly's website...



Monday, August 24, 2009

Wedding Proposal at Couples Tri

If you were out at Decker Lake on July 12, 2009 for the Couples Tri, then you may have witnessed a wedding proposal. The soon-to-be bride and groom both participated in the triathlon on that hot summer day, with the surprise proposal occurring directly after she crossed the line.

This was the first wedding proposal that we know of at a triathlon produced by Jack & Adam's/High Five Events. It was exciting to witness such a happy moment.

Here is the note and picture we received from Diana's friend, Denise:

My friend was recently proposed to at the
Couples Tri at Decker Lake. Her fiance had her friends and family stand at the finish with posters ("Di Will You Marry Me?) and was waiting for her at the finish - he barely beat her. KVUE Austin news did a story on the proposal, and the piece was also picked up by the Dallas news affiliate.


Friday, August 21, 2009

Keepin' The Stink Away

In the past I have blogged about the Penguin Fresh Twist Shoe Deodorizer, but this time I am happy to report that I personally tested the product to see what it was all about.

With summer months comes stinky running shoes for obvious reasons. Lately my shoes have been so bad I have been taking a hose to them to clean them out a little. This week, I rinsed my shoes, placed a Penguin Fresh Twist Shoe Deodorizer inside each shoe (the deodorizers are sold in a pack of two), and then left the deodorizers in all day. I went with the Citrus scent. I have to admit they smell very similar to car deodorizers but for a musty shoe the scent is NOT too strong.

At the end of the day when it was time to check on my shoes I was pleasantly surprised that they smelled half way decent, though there was a slight hint of funky scent, it was 90% better. The best thing about them is that after every run I place the deodorizers in my shoes and I have noticed additional improvement since the first use. So, I give the Penguin Fresh Twist Shoe Deodorizer two thumbs up! We have them available at Jack & Adam's.

The shop received a few new items this past week. A particular one I think many male triathletes will be happy about is the new arrival of Desoto's 2010 Forza Tri Short. It is very similar to this year's version except they scaled back on the band of material towards the knee and changed the color from white to black. Unfortunately, I could not get a photo of the 2010 shorts...they are that new!

Another new arrival is brought to you by e Load. They have come out with a carbohydrate specific training/racing fuel, known as FLY. Currently available in unflavored, the FLY is similar to Carbo Pro in that it replenishes carbohydrates for the long training sessions or long races. Please click on the e Load link for additional information on e Load Fly

The shop also has some great products on sale this week. Currently all Rudy Project sunglasses are now 50% off while supplies last (please note all clearance sales are final.) We also have the Neat Seat Cover on sale 40% off for Purple colored covers. The Neat Seat is a great way to maintain your car by keeping the carseats clean. Finally, the Gatorade Endurance SINGLE serve packets are available at 50% off while supplies last.

Stop in and see what we have! Happy training and stay cool!




Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Shop Ride - Special Edition

As the summer winds towards an end, we are going to introduce monthly Sunday shop ride "specials." This week, one of the regular shop ride leaders, Zac Dashner, and team Velossimo will be taking cyclists and TRIATHLETES out for a group riding training session. Learn to spin fast and efficiently on a group ride. It's the motion not the muscle!

Group riding & paceline riding 101 session on the morning ride of Sunday, August 23rd. 45-50 miler No hammering, no attacking. It's about etiquette and technique. This won't be a hard-paced ride, but just the same you should be able to sustain 18-20 mph while drafting (which we'll teach).

If you're a regular on the Sunday rides, if you do the Decker Lake 35 mile ride or the 33 miler down to the corner store in Buda, do not be intimidated by "45-50" miles. You'll find proper group & paceline riding this distance to not be appreciably more difficult...maybe even easier.

Those wanting to push the pace should not join. Those not wanting to follow direction/instruction/leadership of the group leader(s) should not join, either. For those with TT/tri bikes, absolutely NO riding in the aero bars for this ride and absolutely no MP3 players.

Attendance is free and unlimited, free tacos and ice cold water on the deck back at Jack and Adam's. Be at the shop ready to leave at 8:15 AM, we always start on time! The regular shop ride and no drop ride will leave at 8:30 as always!


Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Clinchers vs. Tubulars

From the Newsletter Archives, September 2007.

Confused about the difference between tubular and clincher tires? We have some pro's and con's of each...

Clincher - Conventional tires used on 99% of all bicycles are "clincher" type, also known as "wire-on." They consist of an outer tire with a u-shaped cross section, and a separate inner tube. The edges of the tire hook over the edges of the rim, and air pressure holds everything in place.

- less expensive
- more common
- wheels are more common
- easier to patch on the road, no need for gluing, stretching tire, etc

- if you flat, you can't really ride on it
- some say a lower quality ride
- will always be heavier (tube, tire, clincher interface)

Tubulars - Tubular tires, also known as "sew-ups" or "sprints" differ from clinchers in that they don't have beads. Instead, the two edges of the tire are sewn together around the inner tube. Tubulars are used on special rims, and are held on to the rims by glue.

- the lightest practical tubulars will always be lighter than the lightest clincher
- if you flat, you can ride on it for a little longer
- if glued properly the tire will stay on the rim even if it flats
- ride quality

- costs more (rims, tubulars)
- more difficult to maintain/repatch as an individual without team support on the road
- you could get tire/rim separation, especially when rims are hot from braking.

The ride quality and weight differences are getting smaller, but will continue to be there, especially with carbon wheels - carbon clinchers are more difficult to make and will be heavier than their carbon tubular rim counterparts.



Thursday, August 13, 2009

Jack's Generic Tri 2009

What: Seventh Annual Jack's Generic Tri
When: Sunday, August 2, 2009
Where: TX Ski Ranch, New Braunfels, TX
Distance: 500 M swim, 13.8 mile bike, 3 mile run
Participants: 813 finishers, ages 13 - 72

A lot of people will tell you that they think the name "Jack's Generic Triathlon" is very clever or funny. You might even agree, but do you know why it's called that? Here's the story behind the name and the theme:

Jack's Generic Triathlon was founded by Jack Murray in 2003, at a time when he thought many triathlons had forgotten about the participants. Events had become so focused on getting big sponsors, accommodating pro athletes, and trying to look good that they sometimes neglected the actual product - the race. Athletes ended up paying more, but their racing experience was actually less. Jack had the idea to put on a race with very little pomp & circumstance, yet at the core be a great race. It would be well organized, safe, good value, and of course, fun. From the outside, it wouldn't look terrific, but the participant experience would be great. It reminded him of the generic isle at the supermarket: It's the same quality products, sometimes even better, but you don't have to pay for the fancy packaging. And hence, the name Jack's Generic Triathlon was born.

While today, more than 7 years after the first Jack's Generic Triathon (JGT as we call it), our races do have a lot more fancy packaging, but at their core they still try to preserve the values of Jack's Generic. Each race is designed, planned, and priced with you, the everyday triathlete in mind.

A few photo highlights from JGT 2009:

Logan announced:

Laura sang the National Anthem:

Beaux started each wave of swimmers:

Dan directed the whole thing (and refilled ice):

Volunteers did a bunch of stuff, including holding the finish line tape:

Cassidy worked the burger cabana with a smile:

Can't get enough JGT? See a few more 2009 photos HERE.

If you participated or volunteered - THANK YOU! We hope you had fun!


Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Volunteering Myths Dispelled

Written by Meriwether Tull, a triathlete and part-timer at Jack and Adam's:

I’ve been really lucky to participate in some awesome triathlons, but I’m ashamed to admit that I’d never actually volunteered for one until recently. When I moved to Austin eight months ago, however, I was fortunate enough to fall right in the middle of an amazing, supportive triathlon community simply by working here at Jack and Adam's. These triathletes not only race, they help fix each other’s bikes, share each other’s experiences, support, cheer, and – above all – volunteer.

I faced a predicament: with an awesome race going on almost every weekend in central Texas this summer – how could I possibly take time off to volunteer?! But I was inspired by my new group of friends so, against what I thought was my better judgment, I volunteered for Jack’s Generic Triathlon on August 2. Now that it’s all said and done, let me dispel a few myths about the horrors of volunteering:

1) Watching everyone race from the sidelines will make you sad that you didn’t race. I dreaded this the most but found that the exact opposite occurred; watching my friends race was super fun. Plus, I learned a ton about what clothes fit (and look!) the best while racing, what equipment suits different athletes, transition and race strategies – all just by observing.

2) Your friends and family won’t want to volunteer with you and, if they do, they won’t have fun. Since Jack’s Generic happened to fall on my birthday this year, I had a trump card on my boyfriend and made him volunteer. His job requires him to stay up really late and he’s not an aficionado of the sport, so I was pretty sure he’d never come to another triathlon after I made him volunteer. He looked exhausted when we woke up at 4am, after he had only one hour of sleep, but while we were body-marking the athletes I turned around to see him laughing, chatting and joking with everyone just like me. Turns out, he had (almost) as much fun as I did.

3) There’s little to no incentive for waking up at 4am when you don’t get the glory of crossing a finish line. I will admit, 4am is early, but training isn’t always about crossing a finish line. Sometimes it’s the journey that counts. Yada, yada… Just remember you can take a nap around noon.*

4) Volunteers don’t get all the awesome perks that competitors do. Actually, volunteers get wonderful stuff: great food before, during and after the race, an awesome t-shirt, and even a post-race party. You could also receive other long-term opportunities, like an invite to the Texas Tri Series party at the end of the year and eligibility for awesome prizes.

5) Slogging around in the dirt and mud isn’t that fun. Wrong! When you’re in there with friends – some you will meet while volunteering – it’s a blast! Enough said.

As you can see, I am a volunteer convert. It only took one race to show me that volunteering is not only fun, but it’s a great way to become a better competitor yourself!


*You could quite possibly have the best nap of your life after volunteering at a triathlon. Just ask Mark. His roommate took this picture of him after returning from the Couples Tri this year. Fell asleep with shoes and all:

Next volunteer opportunity with J&A's - The Austin Tri on Labor Day!


Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Runnin' Down A Dream

J&A's is supporting a great fundraiser this Thursday called "Runnin' Down a Dream." It benefits Girls On the Run of Austin. They'll have many prizes from different businesses around town, including this cruiser we've donated:

Here are the rest of the details from Girls On the Run:
We're in the final stages of planning for this wonderful Runnin' Down a Dream event & if you haven't purchased your tickets yet, think of this:

-Shrimp Tostada with Mango Salsa from Garrido's Austin
-Flautas, chips & salsa from Elsi's
-Mexican Vanilla & Mexican Chocolate cupcakes from Hill Country Cupcake
-Intimate concert with Reckless Kelly
-Gibson is not open to the public, so this is an awesome chance to view, up close & personal, all the guitars lining the walls

Throughout the evening we'll announce raffle winners (your ticket entitles you to one raffle ticket, plus you can buy more). We've got great giveaways. Fox News anchor Loriana Hernandez is our emcee. She'll even broadcast live just before the event starts.

Silent auction including great packages with items such as gift certificates, dinners, art (painting & photography), beauty, an awesome Cruiser bike, and much more.

We'll also be selling tickets at the door, but prices INCREASE to $35 (adult) and $15 (children). We'll be accepting Cash, Check & Credit Card via PayPal.

We really hope you can make it! Tickets available online now on Facebook.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Hydration and Electrolyte Seminar

Registered Dietitian, Meredith Terranova is holding a hydration and electrolyte seminar at J&A's. Here are the details:

If you are searching for a way to feel and train better in the heat of summer, come attend the hydration and electrolyte seminar on Saturday August 15th!

Seminar Details

Have you been faced with any of the following:
- Cramps
- Post-workout hedaches

- Overly exhausted after your workouts
- Nausea or stomach upset during training
- Sloshing stomach
- Loss of excessive weight (water weight) during long workouts

Then it is time to learn:
- What your body needs for hydration and electrolyte balance
- What products are available
- How products compare
- Handouts and Samples
- and answers to your hydration and electrolyte questions!

$10/person for samples of all products available

Date and Time:
August 15th at 10:30am

Jack and Adams Bicycles
1210 Barton Springs Road
Austin, Texas 78704

If you are planning to attend, and have not sent me an email, please RSVP by Thursday August 13th, so that I have plenty of samples available. meredithbn @ yahoo.com


Saturday, August 8, 2009

Late Summer training and Sales items at J&A

By now most of you are in the thick of your training whether it be for a sprint triathlon, marathon, or a full IM. Hopefully things are going well. So far so good as far as my training goes thanks to the help of my Cross Fit Central strength class and my reliable Rogue training program. I decided to race the San Antonio Marathon again. I enjoyed it so much last year that I thought I would try to beat my time from last year. The hardest part so far has been dealing with the heat later in the run. Thankfully November will not be this hot (knock on wood). Please stop in the shop for any nutritional questions or guidance you might need related to nutrition and the heat.

On a more shop related note, we now have Rudy Projects on sale, 50% off. Feel free to stop in and check out the selection of sunglasses now on sale.

A recent arrival to the shop is the Penguin Fresh Twist Shoe Deodorizer. Perfect for hot summer days when your shoes get nice and smelly from all the sweat! The deodorizer is available in packs of two.

Stay cool out there and happy training!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

August Happenings

Here's a list of some of the fun stuff happening in the Tri community in August:

August 5-9: Bicycle Film Festival - This film festival is making a stop in Austin for the second year a row. Competitions, parties, film, fun & all types of bikes fill the packed schedule.

Thursday, August 6: Moonlight Margarita Run - Run for a good cause & get a 'rita!

Thursday, August 13: Girls on the Run Benefit - J&A's is donating a bike for this fundraiser. Live music by Reckless Kelly, food & drinks provided. Many local triathletes are involved in this great organization, so be sure to check it out!

Sunday, August 16: Sweet & Twisted Tri - All Women's Tri at Pace Bend Park.

Sunday, August 16: Darnd'st Du - If you don't like to swim, then try a duathlon!

Sunday, August 23: Pure Austin XTERRA Austin Off Road Triathlon - Emma Long Park, Austin.

Saturday, August 29: Hotter N Hell 100 in Wichita Falls - one of the oldest and largest cycling events in the country. Many Austinites make the journey to this yearly event. Two local businesses, Skeese Greets and Grease Monkey Wipes, will also have a presence at the expo; be sure to stop by their booths!

And don't forget these ongoing group workouts for all ability levels:

Mondays: Free Core Class at 5:30PM at J&A's (bring a mat/towel & water)
Tuesdays: Free coached run workout at 5:30PM at J&A's (ice water provided)
Wednesdays: Free Core Class at 5:30 at J&A's (bring a mat/towel & water)
Sundays: Free shop ride at 8:30AM at J&A's


Monday, August 3, 2009

Traveling for a Triathlon

If you plan on traveling for a tri this summer, here are some tips from Pro Triathlete, Richie Cunningham. Richie is now living in Austin, TX but races nearly every weekend in all parts of the world. From the Newsletter archives, July 2008:

So you just stepped off the plane after spending hours cramped into a tiny seat between some huge guy who's hogging the armrest and an old man that keeps trying to sleep on your shoulder. You're cramped, tired, and have developed cankles* - not to mention pissed off because they charged you an extra $150 to check your 15 lb bike. Best of all - you have a big race in a few days. And you plan to do it all again in a few weeks. Keeping up with your training and making sure you feel fresh for your race has always been a challenge after a long day of traveling. Here are some things you can do to fight those challenges and end up with some great races under your belt.

*cankles - when the ankles are so fat or swelled that they have become indistinguishable from the calves, therefore becoming one in the same

Before the Flight
· If you are traveling for a Sunday race, I recommend arriving on Thursday. You can turn your travel day into a light training or recovery day and then use Friday and Saturday for warm-ups for your race. It also gives you extra time to recover from your flight.

· It's not a bad idea to take your goggles, swimsuit and running gear in your carryon. If they lose your bags (which they often do), you'll still be able to go on a run or swim to loosen up and get the jelly out of your legs.

· Limit the amount of weight you have in your backpack. If you have to walk around with it in the airport, make sure the straps are on both shoulders. Carrying your backpack around puts a lot of strain on your shoulders, which could undo the months of hard training you've done in the pool.

During the Flight
· Flying dehydrates the body more than usual, so it's really important to hydrate as much as possible before and during the flight. Don't be afraid to ask for two drinks at a time on the plane. What I find works well is getting a juice and a water. Also, you can bring a water bottle with you. If you don't want to buy one, take an empty water bottle with you through security and fill it up on the other side. It's also not a bad idea to take something like Emergen-C Powder or electrolyte tablets, i.e. Nuun, to put in your drink. Being dehydrated on the plane can have lasting effects for days to come, so even if you feel fine, force that extra water down and don't worry about stepping over the person next to you if you need to go to the toilet. This gives you a good excuse to get up and walk around anyways.

· Compression socks work wonders on that post-flight cankle problem. Put them on before your flight and take them off when you get to the hotel. You'll notice a huge difference and your legs will feel much better than they usually do after your flight.

· This is a personal preference, but I always bring menthol/eucalyptus, cough drops or chewing gum on the flight as it seems to open up the airways when the air conditioning gets really stuffy and irritates your nose. If you're a big fan of airplane boogers, you can skip this advice.

· Get up and walk around when you can. It will keep your legs from getting too stiff.

· If it's a long flight, I've found I recover best if I don't sleep on the plane. It ends up just being a wasted sleep and makes me feel groggy for the whole day, so I wait until I arrive.

Once You Arrive
· If it's a long flight, take a 45min to 1 hr nap when you get there. Then go for a light 30min run, bike, or swim to get the blood flowing and flush out the crap in your legs.

· Go to bed at your regular time and don't think about what time it is in your old time zone!

Returning Home
· If you are a training machine and paranoid about missing a session and you get stuck at the airport, look for the airport hotel. They usually have a small gym with a treadmill or spin bike.

· Don't be afraid to get straight back into training once you get home. In my experience, it helps me recover a lot faster than taking 3 to 4 days off. My favorite post arrival training session is a long run a day after arriving home. You'll feel crappy for the first 30 or 40 minutes, but by the time you are done, you'll feel like you've flushed most of the race and travel from your legs. This should set you up for getting back into your training for your next race.

Hopefully these tips help you get more out of your training and have a better race.

Richie Cunningham
Professional Triathlete

Check out Richie's website...

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