Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Shop ride Sundays: Confused, I am - time for a beer

Well the Lone Star Triathlon festival saw some great performances, both fast, stoic and heroic. Angie, Suzanne and Meriwether from the shop all had great results, as did Austin based and J&A sponsored Natascha Van Der Merwe and Billy Harlee as well as many of you racing in shop kit. Special mention also goes to James Thomas who sends out the communications on the Texas Tri Series and joins most Sundays for the rides. James had an epic day out finishing the 70.3 Me not so much.

My confusion following the w/e, has also spilled over to this Sundays ride. I checked the schedule and there is nothing there... Woah, what happened to May 2nd? It's just AWOL... How comes no one said anything??

So, here's my proposal. Many of your fearless ride escorts, me, Zac and Lisa from the advanced group for sure, as well as Tammy, Shane, Laura and Kim from the Tempo Multisport and shop intermediate ride crew are all doing the Shiner GASP ride on Saturday, 97-miles of chipseal road, into a headwind, followed by eats and some great beer at the Shiner brewery. You can too if you have not signed up yet.

Registration can be done at packet pickup on Thursday from 4 - 7pm; and Friday 11am-7pm on the deck at the shop. You can also register at the ride start Saturday morning. Full details here.

On the basis we have the Shiner ride Saturday and going south while still fun must be getting "old". So, unless there folks on Sunday don't want to, Sunday there will be the no-drop ride and we will all head out to Decker Lake(it works out at about 24-miles round trip for the no-drop. We will split at Decker Lane, we'll bring the no-drop ride back, and those looking for a bit more adventure can thrash around the back of the lake on the Couples triathlon course. Feel free to weigh in with comments, requests, and questions just don't ask me to explain why I quit on Sunday...

How does that sound? Time for a beer anyone??


Thursday, April 22, 2010

Get Your Game On!

Good luck to ALL racers this weekend!!! A lot of Austinites, including myself, will be heading down to Galveston, TX to participate in the Lonestar 70.3 Triathlon. The Galveston race weekend kicks off on Saturday with a Sprint Distance Triathlon as well as an Olympic Distance Triathlon. For additional details click here. There should be some fast time in Galveston with a relatively flat & fast course! This year, the Lonestar 70.3 Triathlon is designated as the Pro Championship with a $75,000 prize purse.

Not participating in this weekends event? Well DO NOT feel left out! Now through September there is a swimming, biking, and/or running (or all 3!) event every weekend! Check out the Jack & Adam's Event Page for more details.

Have fun and be safe!!


Shop ride Sundays: Back to our routes!

Well it's been a wet and cold year for rides so far, can we have spring back please? When Jack, Drew, Zac and I, with the Velossimo guys and some of the other folks from the shop started the shop rides back 15-months ago, they were just pick up rides.

Since then we 've been joined by literally hundreds of riders, some visiting from out of town, some irregulars and a growing number of regular riders. We've added some variety to the rides, split into two groups, no-drop and long, and then this year were joined by Tempo Multisport who created and staff the intermediate group.

Last week and this week it's 70.3 race time. Last week it was New Orleans and this week it's down in Galveston. A number of the regular riders are racing in the Sprint, Olympic and 70.3, a few of the ride leaders are racing as well.

So, we are going back to the start for the shop ride this week. Meet at the shop for an 8:30 start, there will as always be the no-drop ride, and then depending on who shows up, there may be another group ride! Oh, and of course, Taco Deli tacos afterwards!


Skeese Greets Tri Goes Green

It's Earth Day so thoughts turn to ways of reducing, reusing and recycling. The Skeese Greets Women's Tri has always tried to keep the environmental impact at a minimum. Here are some things we are doing this year:

*Recycling bins at the event.

*Goodie Bags are reusable and made from recycled materials by a local company. They can be reused as a fresh fruit/veggie bag or for wet workout clothes or for whatever else.

*Goodie bags do not contain flyers, but instead a comprehensive guide with sponsor ads and pertinent information printed on recycled paper here in Texas.

*No single-use disposable plastic bottles for water or sports drink distributed at the finish line. We'll provide reusable plastic bottles instead. They can be re-filled at the Water Monster.

*Green portable toilets that use non-toxic deodorizer.

*At least 80% of all marketing and participant communications facilitated through email or website updates instead of paper mail.

*We reuse at least 80% of all signage for the event.

*We plan to serve locally grown, fresh, organic fruit at the finish line.

*Clothing/shoe/bike recycling/reuse program available at packet pickup with Bicycle Re-Cycle.

*Carpooling option.

*VIP parking for carpoolers of 3 or more.

with more to come!


Monday, April 19, 2010

Riding in and around town

During Sundays shop ride I was asked a couple of times if the shop had bike route maps? No, not so much. Besides, mostly the routes we have start at the shop for the shop rides and not everyone wants to start there, although there are ALWAYS good reasons to pop into your favorite bike shop and triathlon headquarters ;-)

There are a variety of online ride direction websites, some more useful than others, such as mapmyride which if you search for Austin will return over a 1,000 rides, but adding "Jack" to the search will narrow it down to include some of the shop rides, as well as some others that start or end at the shop!

Bikely.com also has some good rides for the greater Austin metro area. We don't endorse any of these rides, and road condition can change from day to day, so please take care! But hey, while it's still nice and cool lets get out there and ride!


Thursday, April 15, 2010

Riding to Raise Dough

It's Tax Day, yes, but it's also National High Five Day. I think high fives should go to all the people who have helped raise millions of dollars during the MS150 happening this weekend from Houston to Austin. The goal was to raise $18 million and they're almost there. So they definitely deserve high fives!

What about you? Have you ever raised money in such a way? Asking your friends, family, neighbors and strangers to chip in so that you can hit your quota? Or have you helped raise money through a group like the LAF Tri Team which will be participating in the Austin Tri again this year?

There are lots of ways triathletes and cyclists can help raise money. Besides joining Team In Training or the LAF (amongst others), there's a newer one here in Austin called SoleMates. You can join SoleMates to help raise money for Girls On the Run. How it differs from other organizations is that you can pick any event of your liking; there's no specific tri or ride designated by the organization. You can pick a 5k or 10k if you want or even the Skeese Greets Women's Tri (hint, hint!)

What are you riding for? (besides your own well-being?) Either way, I'm giving you a virtual high five!


Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Shop ride Sundays: It's all about Transitions

If I told you I could save you 2-mins off your swim time with 30-mins practice, you'd bite my hand off to find out how. Bring your transition gear to this sundays shop ride, including run shoes and hat. My transition times at last w/e Texas State Sprint Tri were 47 and 43 seconds and in both cases included a 50m or so run.

We've two Transition practice and Q/A sessions scheduled as part of the shop rides in April and May. The first one this week will be at the shop after everyone else has left and will be at the basic level. The 2nd session in May will be advanced and cover running mounts/dismount. There will be some simple practice sessions and then we will ride. Those not wanting to do the transition sessions will leave at 8:30 as normal. A shorter ride will follow the transition session for those that take part. Mark C.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

The Texas School for the Deaf Physical Education Program, along with 1379 Family Sports Shop and Jack and Adam's Bicycles, is hosting the 3rd Annual Ranger Triathlon for KIDS and ADULTS on the school grounds located in the heart of downtown Austin with the beautiful cityscape in the background -- on Sunday, April 18th 2010.

The race takes place on a safe, closed course, free from traffic, that includes swimming in a nice, indoor swimming pool, cycling on the campus road that encircles the school grounds, and lastly, a run that takes place on sidewalk, grass, and the track, even climbing a set of stairs! How about that for added "spice" in a triathlon!!!

Again, the mini-sprint distance triathlon is for both KIDS and ADULTS. This is a wonderful opportunity to experience a triathlon in which children, parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and friends, regardless of age, can participate in the same event, cheering each other on! It is even an event for those who are looking to get ready for longer distance triathlons later in the summer.

In addition, the primary language spoken at the Texas School for the Deaf is American Sign Language. You will have the opportunity to see the National Anthem in ASL and even learn a few signs as you compete and/or volunteer with participants associated with the school.
Come join a wonderful family event!
Race date: Sunday, April 18th 2010
To register: Click Here!
For more information about the event: Click Here!
To volunteer, Contact the volunteer coordinator: michael.wynne@tsd.state.tx.us


Saturday, April 10, 2010

Trakkers Pro Team on Ironman.com!

The Trakkers Pro Team Training camp is a big success!! Check us out on the homepage of Ironman.com.

There's still time to join in the fun. Check out the schedule. You can also follow the Trakkers Pro Team as their season progresses.


Friday, April 9, 2010

Shop ride Sundays: Maintenance, Mechanics and South

This Sunday sees us heading South again, with a difference. Down at Akins High School we will take a break for a free mechanics workshop with Jeff. Jeff will cover breakdowns 101, share some great tips that will help you get home even when things appear beyond rescue.

After the workshop the rides will continue, no-drop will head back to the shop, and the Intermediate and Long will head down the old San Antonio Road South. For those who don't want to attend the mechanics workshop, you are welcome to continue on your own.

A few of the ride leaders will be missing, either the Cap10k, or the Texas State Triathlon, what ever you are doing this weekend, have fun and be safe!


Shop ride Sundays: Intervals Follow-up

This past Sunday was the first “Interval Clinic” at the Sunday shop ride. The intermediate group, which started up this year, is focusing on improving skills and training level for those passionate about the sport of cycling and looking to take their game to the next level. While an understanding of group etiquette and strong handling skills are key to a well-rounded cyclist, and addressed in our other clinics, we also want to show you how to improve your fitness, strength, speed, and power! Enter the “Intervals Clinic”.

The word “interval” gets thrown around a lot, and purists will tell you that it’s not an interval unless it’s directed at improving your maximal oxygen capacity. Webster defines interval as “a space between things, points, limits, etc”. For our purposes here, ‘interval’ is simply meant as a period of time in which you are working on some specific aspects of your cycling fitness. There are multiple intervals that should be incorporated into your training over the season, and last Sunday we discussed and practiced three of them as follows…

1. “Muddy Buddies” – Best performed on a slight uphill or into a headwind, get into a gear that allows you to keep a strong 60-65 rpm cadence (imagine pedaling through mud), making conscious effort to keep equal tension all the way around the pedaling circle. Your bike should roll in a straight line as you are never letting up on either side. Hold this for 5 mins, recover and repeat multiple times to fatigue. Work up to 20 min intervals. Caution: NEVER push through joint pain!

Why am I doing this? - Muscles become stronger at the contraction velocity that you train them in. If you spend 90% of your ride spinning at 90 rpms, you’re going to be strongest at that cadence. That’s great until you hit a hill, run out of gears, and grind up it at 65-70 rpms, wondering why the pack is leaving you behind. One way to improve your climbing force, is to train your muscles to be strong at climbing cadence. Think of this as on-the-bike resistance training

2. “Scooby Doos” – Very high cadence intervals, lasting only 30-40 seconds, with 1.5 min recovery between, repeat up to 6 times. Any ‘Scooby Doo’ fans out there? When the scary monsters appear, Shaggy & Scooby run away, but before they take off, they always spinned in place, this is your visual for this interval. Think fast circles with your feet versus sprinting the bike forward. Ramp up your cadence until your butt starts to bounce out of the saddle, then back off just enough to eliminate the bouncing and hold it. As you become more fit, shorten the recovery time between efforts.

Why am I doing this? – Besides the short anaerobic hit, this ‘interval’ will result in the recruitment of more muscle fibers, and give you a smoother, more efficient pedal stroke.

3. VO2max intervals – 3-5 minute efforts at maximal cycling heart rate, with equal recovery. Goal is to attain 30 minutes per session, so work your way up to 6x5 minutes with 5 min recoveries. Find the minimal effort that gets you to maximum heart rate. For example, if I reach my max HR at 20mph on a certain stretch of road, that doesn’t mean I can’t go 22mph… but if I do, I may fatigue myself for future intervals, and won’t be getting any additional benefit.

Why am I doing this? – Increase maximal oxygen capacity. Since you are completing these intervals at HRmax, you are also at VO2max, thus increasing your cycling “horse power”.

All too often, cyclists get stuck in the rut of just riding long, and staying too close to their comfort zone. This type of training results in progress plateaus that frustrate many riders. Incorporate one or two of these interval sessions into your next ride, and you’ll be well on your way to improving your cycling fitness!

See you soon!

Coach Tammy Metzger

Tempo Multisport LLC



Happenings At Jack & Adam's

If you haven't checked out the J&A website lately then please read on for upcoming events here at Jack & Adam's.

Tonight kicks off the Trakkers Pro Training weekend with happy hour from 6p.m to 8p.m here at Jack & Adam's. The training weekend is open to all and is FREE! Please check out the remaining weekend schedule below:

8:30 AM Group
ride from J & As.

12:00 PM- 4:00 PM Trakkers Pro Team & Jack & Adams Season Kick-Off Expo!
4:30 PM Group Run from J & As.

Optional Capitol 10,000 event. Trakkers devices available for test run.
8:00AM -12:00PM
Pro athletes receive Retul Bike Fits with Zane Castro
12:00PM Trakkers product talk and wrap-up.

Next weekend is also full of events with the Shiner Bash Kick Off Party here at the shop on Saturday, April 17th...schedule updates for this event to follow.

For those of you interested in relaxing a little next weekend and watch the kiddos race check out the 1379 Tri Series Kick Off Event with the TSD Ranger Triathlon.

With lots of racing comes lots of training and the need for new training stuff. We just got in an order of TYR Grab Bag suits. The Grab Bag suit line is available in all sizes but at a discounted price. Suits range between $30-$40. Please stop by and check out the selection.

Have a great weekend!


Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Scheduling Tune Ups During Tri Season

Now that tri season is upon us you should know when to schedule your tune ups before your big race.

During the busy season the J&A repair schedule is usually about a week out so you should call about 2 weeks out from when you need your tune up done to make sure that we get it on the schedule. This also lets us get any parts in stock if you are going to replace something that we may not currently have.

Good luck this season!


Monday, April 5, 2010

Getting In and Out of Your Wetsuit

Are you ready to try on your first wetsuit? Maybe you’d like to upgrade from a long john (sleeveless) to a full suit (one with sleeves)? Whether you’re trying on your first wetsuit in the shop or prolonging the life of your wetsuit by taking proper care of it, the process getting into and taking off a wetsuit is the most common time when it can be damaged. Knowing how to perform these processes properly and practicing them frequently will save you from frequent repairs or replacements and can also speed up your transition time.

Note: Sharp objects can penetrate the rubber of your performance wetsuit. Long fingernails and other sharp objects could make small cuts in the surface of your wetsuit if caution is not exercised. These small cuts are not covered under the manufacturer warranty and are the responsibility of the owner. When trying on a wetsuit, it is best to clip fingernails or be especially aware of your nails.

  1. Step into the wetsuit with the zipper facing behind you.
  2. Pull the legs of your wetsuit about 1-2 inches above your ankle
  3. Raise the wetsuit up to around your waist. Work the wetsuit rubber towards your crotch area until the air pockets have disappeared. For an ideal fit, the wetsuit should feel snug and tight around the waist and legs.
  4. Lift the wetsuit up around your arms or shoulders depending on the wetsuit model.
  5. For a full suit, pull the sleeves 1-2 inches above watch or wrist area. When pulling on the sleeves, pull the rubber between the elbow and the shoulder.
  6. To maximize range of motion and comfort in the water, it will be important to take your time fitting the arms. Point your arms to the sky and start working the wetsuit material towards your shoulder. The wetsuit fit is correct when there is no gap between the wetsuit and your arm pit. Excess rubber should reside about the shoulder. Repeat for both arms.
  7. Have a second person zip and secure the collar. Ask the person assisting you to be careful that the zipper does not catch in the protective back flap. Having another person secure the beck mechanisms will prolong the life of the rubber and help prevent your zipper from getting stuck in the closed position.
  8. The wetsuit should feel tight around your neck causing the wetsuit to move with the neck. If the neck moves freely inside of the wetsuit, readjust the collar. If you choose to use lubrication products, make sure it is a non-petroleum based product.
  9. A proper fitting wetsuit should feel almost uncomfortably tight out of the water. The suit will naturally expand and become more comfortable once in the water and in a proper swimming position.

The key to a quick transition is being relaxed and using controlled movements while removing the wetsuit. Extra force will only slow this process.
  1. Begin by releasing the Velcro closure on your collar. Take the opposite hand and slowly use the rip cord to pull down the wetsuit. Imagine that you are unzipping your wetsuit in slow motion. Fast, uncontrolled jerks will add time to this process and only slow your transition.
  2. Start to turn the wetsuit inside out. This entire process can be completed while you are exiting the water and finding your bike in transition. Your wetsuit should be rolled down and hanging off your waist by the time you reach your bike rack.
  3. When taking off the bottom portion of the wetsuit, remember to use your arms. Do not use opposite legs to take off the wetsuit. Standing on the wetsuit could cause pavement, sand or any other surface to puncture the wetsuit.
If you have questions about wetsuit fit, putting on or taking off your wetsuit, come by the shop and talk to our staff. We are happy to share with you any tricks of the trade we’ve learned!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Trakkers Pro Team Training Camp Open to All!

Come join Trakkers Pro Team and Jack & Adam’s Bicycles for a weekend of Triathlon fun. Team Trakkers is kicking off their year with multiple happenings at Jack & Adam’s on Fri., Sat., and Sun., April 9th, 10th, and 11th. Come join us for a happy hour, swim, bike, run, or just stop by the mini expo and try to win some free stuff. Other guests will include Rev 3 Events, High Five Events, Trakkers GPS, Saucony, First Endurance, and many more. Mark your calendar now so you don’t miss the fun. Below is a schedule of events for the entire weekend.


8:30AM Group Swim at Barton Springs. Knock the dust off your wetsuit and come take a swim with some of the best in the sport. (Meet at Barton Springs, bring cash for entry!)

6:00-8:00PM Happy hour for ALL to attend. Come meet the Trakkers Pro Team, drink beer, eat catered food, kick back and listen to some live music! (Meet at J & A’s.)

Pro Team includes Michael Lovato, Amanda Lovato, Richie Cunningham, Dede Griesbauer, Brian Fleischmann, Mary Beth Ellis, Jacqui Gordon, and Carole Sharpless.


8:30 AM Group ride from J & A’s. 30 Mile Hilly Loop, presented by First Endurance ANYONE welcome – Free First Endurance product provided pre- and post-ride.
Trakkers device test run and demo set to view at J & A’s
First Endurance nutrition talk immediately following the ride: learn the ins and outs of fueling and recovery. Breakfast tacos & coffee compliments of First Endurance.

12:00 PM- 4:00 PM Trakkers Pro Team & Jack & Adam’s Season Kick-Off

Catered food from Whole Foods - fruit, sandwiches, and more, compliments of Team Trakkers and J & A’s.

Trakkers device test run and demo set to view at J & A’s.
High Five Events, Rev 3 Events, Trakkers, Saucony, First Endurance, and more will be on site with product samples and displays.

Lots of Free stuff to be given away!

4:30 PM Group Run from J & A’s. Take a jog around Town Lake. 4 and 7 mile loops available. - Pros split off for photos on Auditorium Shores


8:00AM Optional Capitol 10,000 event. Trakkers devices available for test run.

8:00AM -12:00PM Pro athletes receive Retul Bike Fits with Zane Castro

12:00PM Trakkers product talk and wrap-up.

Shop ride Sundays: Did someone mention intervals?

In the last blog post Thomas discussed intervals, well right on cue this Sunday, Tammy and the Team Tempo Multisport folks will be adding a structured set of intervals to the intermediate ride.

This week we have a no-drop ride special as well. Zac along with Jeff will be taking the no drop ride out on Shoal Creek for some variation, but as always it will be fully supported and is a great way to get started with your cycling.

Which leaves the long ride. Lisa and I will take the long ride south but we will be taking a different route this week and adding about 6-miles and the Buda loop for abut 45 in total. I'm hoping to have a few surprises for the ride, but suffice to say our rides are almost always interval sessions, warm-up, go fast, stop at the lights, go fast, stop, rinse and repeat.

I understand it's Easter and so some of our regulars won't be able to make it, also, a bunch of us are racing out at the Austin Duathletes Protest Duathlon on Saturday, still time to sign-up for either the du(2/10/2) or the double du(2/10/2/10/2) - and yes, that is a picture of me on the AD website and yes, I will be racing the double du Saturday.

Hope to see many of you Saturday and/or Sunday and may your god go with you.