I met a coaching client of mine yesterday afternoon at Waveny Park in New Canaan to do some heart rate testing on him. It was quite obvious that us northerners have been itching for Spring, based on the amount of runners and triathletes hitting the trails. I saw a bunch of familiar faces which is always nice. This is the time of year where I have to yell at the triathletes I coach to get off their trainers and get outside to ride. The trainer is a great tool and if I have one hour to ride, I would benefit far more physically by spending indoors on the trainer than outside. However, you don't develop bike handling skills on a trainer, something that most triathletes are in dire need of, plus, being outside is just good for the head and soul.
I ran in the trails near my house yesterday with my ipod shuffle. I did a nice 1 hour 5 minute hilly run at a steady pace and attacked the hills. I put some new music on my shuffle - it's always cool when the new tune shows up in the middle of a session. More and more athletes are training with music now, due to great technology. At some of my camps, I perform an LT test on the computrainer on each camper. I have quite a variety of music on my ipod and I hook it up to a speaker system during the testing and have the participant request a few songs for them to ride to. An inside joke between Baker and I is that 9 out of 10 people will choose U2 - either Vertigo or Beautiful Day. A great band and both great songs and very safe. Ask people about their music preferences and most are afraid of being judged so they'll answer very safe and mainstream. At the recent AZ camp, I asked those participating a few weeks before the camp to email me three or four of their favorite songs to train to. Then, I took everyones music selections and made a cd for each camper. I was hoping to get some very cool variety and for people to share with others some songs that we may not be familiar with but I think most played it safe. Lot's of good songs, but most that people would already have on their ipod. I can understand how people are insecure about displaying their music preferences. Sure enough at every camp, there's always one or two that will comment something along the lines of "who's playing this shit?!" if somebody requests a rap, dance or techno song. Personally, I listen to just about everything except country. I mostly like alternative music, but I also like classic rock, rap, and even pop music. But country music - who would play that shit?!
I have a big contingent racing Lake placid once again this year. Not to make those racing there nervous, but it's definitely go time! Do the math on weeks left and you'll see what I mean. That is a spectacular race, one that I will do again some time. For this year, I will be there but on the sidelines, harassing those racing. I am going to set up a couple of longer group brick sessions - one in late May and one in mid June, for my athletes racing there. Anyone else that would like to join us regardless of whether they are racing there or not, or work with me or not, is more than welcome. I'll post something on my message board soon about these sessions. The bigger the turnout, the more fun.