Swim Inspiration for the Team and for Young Athletes

By Senior Coach David Martin

During a practice with the Varsity Swim team at Shepaug Valley High School in Washington, CT, I was trying to inspire some of the athletes to pursue the breast stroke in an upcoming Relay event with 3 other local schools.  As we worked through drills, I asked some of the athletes if they had heard of Adam Peaty.  They shook their heads and replied no.  I then followed up with Dara Torres and Greg Louganis as we have some divers on the team.  I was astonished when silence followed.  I decided to make a list for them of some swimmers I believe to be some of the top swim athletes of my generation.  I will continue to add more as the weeks pass but I thought I would share my write up with you all.  

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Dear athletes,

 

            I have listed a group of athletes I would like you all to be familiar with.  These are current and past athletes who have influenced the sport of swimming and diving.  Try to watch videos of them on YouTube, learn about their past, and let their courage and passion for the sport be a motivator for you.  Thank you for letting me be a part of your team, I’m really proud of you all.  

“You either do or you don’t, there is no try.” Yoda

 

1)    Caeleb Dressel: Won his 7th Gold Medal at Worlds tying Michael Phelps.  Won 2017 Male swimmer of the year at Golden Goggles.  Current World record in 4x100 meter mixed freestyke and medley relays.  University of Florida    

a.     100 fly: 43.58

b.     50 free relay split: 17.71

c.     200 IM: 1:40.61

d.     100 free: 40.00 

2)    Adam Peaty: Incredible competitor at the breast stroke.  Current World record holder for 100m and 50 m breast stroke. First swimmer ever to break 26 seconds in the breast stroke.  British competitive swimmer.  Most successful British swimmer at a single World Championship  

a.     100 breast stroke: 57.13 

b.     50 breast stroke: 25.95

3)    Greg Louganis: One of the most well known Divers of all time and has been called “probably the best diver in history.”  Won gold medals at 1984 and 1988 Summer Olympics on both springboard and platform.  Only male diver to sweep diving events in consecutive Olympic games.  He won 17 gold Medals in his career between world championships, Olympic games, pan American games, and the summer universiade

4)    Michael Phelps: Most decorated Olympian and swimmer of all time.  World record holder in 100 meter butterfly, 200 meter butterfly, 400 meter individual medley as well as former world record holder in 200 meter freestyle and 200 meter relay.  Holds top 8 fastest ever recorded times for 200m butterfly.   

a.     100 butterfly: 49.82

b.     200 butterlfy: 1:51.51

5)    Lilly King: Swims at Indiana University.  Powerhouse in the breast stroke.  In my opinion, made it great to watch.  Current world record holder in 50 meter and 100-meter breast stroke.  She has 10 gold medals on the world stage.  Freshman year in college she was named Big Ten swimmer of the year, 4 all American honors, first-team all-big ten, and big ten freshman of the year.    

a.     100 breast stroke: 1:04.13

b.     200 breast stroke: 2:21.83 

6)    Tom Daley: Double World Champion in 10 meter platform.  Was Britain’s youngest competitor at Olympic games at 14 years old.  Won gold at the 2017 FINA World Championship at the 10m platform event.  He Has 10 current gold medals in world competitions. 

7)    Dara Torres: 12 time Olympic medalist.  First swimmer ever to represent USA in 5 olympic games.  Oldest swimmer at 41 to earn a place on US Olympic team.  In the early 80’s, held world records for 50 m freestyle and 4x100 medley relay and 4x100 meter freestyle.  Iconic Event was 2000 Sydney Olympics winning 4x100 freestyle relay.  Set the new world record at that event with 3.36.61

a.     50m free: 25.61

b.     4x100 m free: 3:36.61

8)    Mark Spitz: Nine time Olympic champion and former world record holder in 7 events.  He won 7 gold medals at the ’72 Olympics in Munich.  Indiana University Grad.  Member of the USA Olympic Hall of Fame.  Between 1968 and 1972 he set 35 world record.    

a.     200 Butterfly LC: 2:00.70

b.     200 Free LC: 1:52.78

c.     100 Free LC: 51.22

9)    Katinka Hosszu: BEAST!  45 Gold medals at World events including 13 at World Championships.  Hungarian swimmer, world record holder in 100m IM, 200m IM, 400m IM, 100m backstroke.  First swimmer to hold world records in all five IM vents at the same time.  Competed at 4 olympic games and nicknamed the “Iron Lady.” 

a.     200 IM LC: 2:06.12

b.     400 IM LC: 4:26.36

c.     200 IM SC: 2:01.86

d.     400 IM SC: 4:19.46

10) Sara Sjostrom: Has top 3 best recorded times ever for the 100 m butterfly and best time for short course 100 butterfly

a.     100m butterfly LC: 55.48

b.     100 butterfly SC: 54.61

11) Katie Ledecky: Five time Olympic medalist and 14 time world champion, which is the most in history for a female swimmer.  She is the current world record holder in the womem’s 400, 800, and 1500 meter freestyle as well as the 500, 1000, and 1650 yard freestyle.  Youngest person on Time magazine’s Time 100 list in 2016.  She has earned Swimming World’s World Swimmer of the year and American Swimmer of the year in 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016. 

a.     1500m free: 15:25.53

b.     800m free: 8:04.86

c.     400m free: 3:56.46

d.     200m free: 1:53.73

 

Other Incredible Athletes and swimmers I’ll cover in the future: Ryan Lotche, Missy Franklin, Ian Thorpe,  Kevin Cordes, Jenny Thompson, Dana Vollmer, Anthony Ervin, Nathan Adrian, Maya Dirado, Simone Manuel

 

Fall Cycling Tips from FTE Coach Ann Marie Miller

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For most of us in the Northeast, the competitive cycling & triathlon season winds down in autumn as the days grow shorter, the leaves start to turn and fall and the temperatures drop. Although there may not be any races in the next few months, fall can be a great time to jump-start your cycling for next season. Here are some tips to keep you on track and start your next season at a higher fitness level.

 

Take a Short Break, but Don’t Go Off the Wagon:

 

Historically, pro cyclists took a long break at the end of the cycling season, from 1-3 months, but the current trend favors a shorter break, and a few weeks of “unstructured” riding or cross training before resuming base training. Your body will benefit from a rest from the rigors of week-in, week-out training and racing, and mentally, some time “off the grid” may help you re-focus and refresh your attitude toward training.

 

After your last race or training block, give yourself 1-2 weeks off the bike, or just biking for fun, when you feel like it.  Try a little cross training and enjoy some activities you normally can’t do in the thick of racing season. Then use the next 2 weeks for unstructured, recovery rides. Ride for fun, and avoid the temptation to pore over your power meter or chase wheels.

 

Enjoy a break from a formal training calendar, but set a date to return to base training and re-building your endurance base. Don’t procrastinate and keep pushing back your return to training!

 

Work on Your Cycling Skills

 

There’s still a lot of good weather and “road time” left so take advantage of the nice fall weather and get out on the road!!!! Now is a great tie to use those “endurance miles” days to work on your cycling skills. It is easier and more productive to work on skills while riding at moderate intensities than when you’re suffering through intervals and about to blow up.

Here are some things to perfect before next year:

 

·       Paceline riding. You will become a much better rider and you can go farther much faster if you learn to ride good pacelines. Riding closely behind another rider requires good bike handling, proper cadence, smooth pedaling and the ability to anticipate changes in speed or hazards on the road. The goal of good paceline riding is for all riders to stay together and proceed smoothly as a unit. This topic deserves its own post, but in a nutshell, learning to ride a smooth paceline takes practice. The quickest way to make progress with paceline skills is to find a USA Cycling Licensed Coach with experience Ieading road cycling group training.

·       Cornering: Practice cornering to avoid being “dropped” at every turn, and to carry speed thru corners.  A good bike fit is key for your position when cornering, and working with a coach can build your confidence and shave off seconds thru turns.

·       Descending: Take time to work on your descending skills for greater comfort and control on downhills.

·       Shifting to maintain a steady cadence and effort: learn to use your gears efficiently to maintain a steady cadence and effort level. Proper shifting is important to avoid excessive stress to your drivetrain and to improve your cycling efficiency.

·       Pedaling.  Although it seems simple, adding a few pedaling skills drills now will result in greater power with less effort and improved muscle balance next season.

·       Eating and drinking on the bike; practice eating and drinking on the bike. Now  is a good time to try different sports drinks and energy bars to see how they affect you.

 

Ride Some Gravel

 

Take your bike off the beaten path & hit some gravel or dirt roads in the fall!  Don’t use your delicate, all-carbon race wheels; make sure you have a set of sturdy “training wheels” and try some dirt roads. 

 

You will develop better balance & bike handling riding on different surfaces, and the variety will spice up those long “endurance miles” days.

 

Dress for Success:

 

As the temperature drops, dress for comfort and performance.  A few simple wardrobe additions will keep you riding on the road without suffering.

 

·       Baselayers: These range from lightweight mesh summer models that wick away sweat to heavy-duty long sleeve insulating baselayers for the coldest winter days. Start with a lightweight short sleeve baselayer under your cycling jersey when the mornings are chilly.

·       Armwarmers, knee warmers, leg warmers: A great addition to your cycling shorts, baselayer and short-sleeve jersey on chilly day. Easy to remove them and stash in your jersey pocket as it warms up.

·       Cycling vest or cycling windbreaker jacket: A versatile accessory to block the wind and keep your torso warm which can be stored in your jersey pocket if the day heats up. (avoid baggy jackets which are not aerodynamic)

·       Glove liners or lightweight fall finger gloves: The hands are very exposed to wind chill, so avoid frozen fingers with a light weight polypropylene “glove liner” under your normal cycling gloves, or invest in lightweight full finger gloves for frosty days.

·       Bib shorts, bib knickers or Bib tights (for colder weather): Bib shorts keep the torso warmer and prevent cold air from seeping in around your waist. Thermal full-length bib tight will keep your legs warm in frigid temps.

·       Cycling cap: You lose over 60% of your body heat from your head, so as the temperature drops, layer a wool cycling cap under your helmet to stay warm.

·       Toe warmers, booties: Most cycling shoes are very well-ventilated to keep feet cool in the warmer months, so add toe warmers when its nippy or go to full-footed “booties” over your shoes to keep the feet warmer in freezing conditions

·       Avoid baggy “sweatshirts” or loose jackets when cycling.

 

Be consistent:

 

After a nice break, start back gradually and build duration and mileage sensibly during your “endurance base” period.  Riding for shorter periods more frequently will help your fitness more than “binge riding”, or doing infrequent long rides o infrequent very hard rides. Doing one 6 hour ride in a week is not as effective as doing 3-4 rides of 1-3 hours in a week. Likewise, one “hard” interval session will not make up for missing 5 days of riding in a row. The more the body becomes accustomed to doing something regularly, the more efficiently it performs.

Get in a habit of riding and exercising frequently and build your longer rides gradually.

 

Check Your Equipment:

 

Examine your bike and your gear for signs of wear and tear, and make a list of any equipment that needs to be replaced or upgraded.

 

Here are some things to check for now to be ready for next season:

 

·       Chain and cassette: Your shifting will suffer and you may drop your chain excessively if your chain and cassette are worn out. Look for worn-down cogs on your cassette and have a mechanic measure your chain for “chain stretch”. Replace your cassette and chain together for best results.

·       Handle bar tape: Replacing dirty, torn handlebar tape will freshen up any bike, and will provide better grip and greater comfort. Choose bar tape with enough padding to dampen the vibrations from the road and avoid numbness or pain in the hands.

·       Tires: Wipe your tires after every ride and check for cuts or tire damage. Replace tires if there are signs of deep cuts or punctures, or when the tread begins to “square off” instead of maintaining a smooth curved surface.

·       Brake Pads: Since brake pads aren’t easily visible, it’s easy to forget about them.  If the brake pad has narrowed, or the “grooves” in brake pads have worn down, it’s time for a new set.

·       Cleats: If the cleats on your cycling shoes have lost their sharp edges, buy new cleats.  Worn-out cleats will not secure your foot to the pedal, and may result in an accident if you “pull out” of the pedal because the cleat was too thin to hold the shoe to the pedal.

·       Saddle: Saddles do wear out; the outer covering wears away and the padding breaks down over time.  If your saddle looks “tired”, you’re due for a new saddle.

·       Bike Tune-up: take your bike to professional mechanic for a full-service tune-up at least once a year. Your bike will perform better if you maintain it properly.

 

Make the most of the fall season to come back more motivated and well-prepared for next year!

 

Ann Marie Miller, MA is a 5-time UCI World Masters’ Road Cycling Champion, a 13-time USA Cycling Masters’ National Road Cycling Champion and is a USA Cycling Category Racer.  She is also a USA Cycling Level 2 Licensed Coach and holds an MA in Applied Physiology from Columbia University and is a certified BG Bike Fit Technician from Specialized Bicycle Components University. A Reebok University Master Trainer for over 10 years, she has presented educational workshops for fitness professionals across the United States and in Europe, Asia and South America. She enjoys helping athletes and exercise enthusiasts of all levels improve their fitness and have more fun on the bike, in the gym and in all their athletic pursuits.

Masters World Champion Ann Marie Miller Shares Her Experience Winning the Gold

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Albi, France

August 24-27, 2017

 

One benefit of winning the Road Race at the USA Cycling Masters’ National Championships this year was the invitation extended to me to compete at the 2017 UCI World Masters’ Road Cycling Championships August 24-27, 2017 in Albi, France.

Having participated in 2 previous UCI World Masters’ Road Cycling Championships, where I had won both the Time Trial and Road Race in Pietermaritzburg, South Africa in 2012 and again in 2013 in Trento, Italy, I was eager to return. The event has grown steadily, with over 3,000 riders from 62 countries competing in 2017. Great Britain had the most riders, with over one-third of the entrants, followed by France and Australia, then Italy and the USA.

 

Albi is a medium sized city on the banks of the Tarn River in southern France, about 52 miles northeast of Toulouse. The city is a UNESCO World Heritage site, known as the “Episcopal City” for its enclosed medieval quarter featuring the Cathedral de Sainte-Cecile, to be used as the site of the start of the Road Race, and the Palais de la Berbie, the home of the Toulouse-Lautrec museum. The countryside around Albi is spectacular with long, rolling hills with vineyards, fields of corn, sunflowers and wheat, dairy farms and forests. There are quaint medieval walled villages on hilltops throughout the region, and the roads wind over the hills and through the valleys. The Mediterranean climate in August is usually warm and sunny, perfect conditions for me for racing. 

 

As few accommodations were still available by the time we made arrangements we ended up staying in a village about 14 miles north of Albi in Cordes-Sur-Ciel, a small medieval walled village on the top of a large hill. The town looked like a magic castle perched atop a hill. Although Cordes is a 30-minute drive away from the Albi race activities we decided to take a chance and are glad we did.

 

After an easy overnight flight we arrived on Monday the 21st in the morning, and drove to Cordes-Sur-Ciel, unpacked and checked out the village. All the buildings in the town were ancient, stone-walled structures with wooden shutters and it was a challenge navigating our Renault Scenic crossover on the tiny cobblestone streets that wound along stone walls and through narrow arches. Cars are strongly discouraged between 8AM and 4PM. We had a magnificent view of the hills and valleys from the outdoor dining terrace of our hotel. The hotel’s upper rooms were accessible through a circular stone staircase with thick roped banister guarded by a medieval armored knight we named “Roy”. We stayed up as late as we could to get on to local time.

 

 

The next day we were on pace to head to race headquarters at the Parc des Expos at the Albi Motor Speedway grounds only to discover the battery in our rental car dead.  Avis amazingly had a local auto repair mechanic there inside one hour to break in and jump-start the car, but we still had to visit the factory Renault dealer in Albi to re-set the car’s electronic system. Now two hours off schedule, we luckily had no trouble finding the one of 2 dealerships in Albi.  While waiting, I learned the manager of the Renault dealership was interested in meeting me having been told I was competing in the UCI Masters’ Worlds down the road. We thought it was just a general interest in a sport deeply ingrained in the French culture, but he went on to say his son was a cyclist, then pulled up a screen-shot on his computer of a rider in Direct Energie kit. The Renault manager then handed us his card explaining his son was Lillian Calmejane, the new French cycling sensation who won Stage 8 of the 2017 Tour de France from a breakaway! He was so proud and I of course was completely star struck and was very happy to have the opportunity to meet Lillian Calmejane’s father, turning an unfortunate breakdown into a good omen. You don’t run into the father of a Tour stage winner every day.

 

I had emailed GP Cycles, the official bike shop of the UCI World Masters’ event about renting a trainer for the Time Trial, but had not received a reply, so we drove by to see if anything was still available. With all the bike gear in the car needing to be guarded, I was on my own in the bike shop and thankful for the translation app on my iPhone to communicate with the staff. They had a new Tacx trainer for me for the Time Trial and some other incidentals. I made friends with Manu the mechanic there and learned the bike shop staff would be available at the Parc Des Expos during Masters’ Worlds so we could return the trainer there and they would be on hand for mechanical assistance.

 

We drove the Time Trial course that afternoon and I rode it twice.  The full course was 22.5 km, 13.5 miles, and the only parts of the TT course we could not ride that day were the actual start & finish on the Albi Motor Speedway, because the track was being used for racecar practice. The track itself features several technical sinuous turns, very different from a big oval racetrack like the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. We watched  racecars speeding around the track, their engines revving as they accelerated out of the corners. 

 

The Motor Speedway was in the suburb of Le Sequestre, and the TT course headed out into the countryside toward the villages of Florentin and Rouffiac. The rest of the course was very technical, passing through several roundabouts and around tight corners with all kinds of curbs & “road furniture”.  As the course progressed in to the countryside, the roads narrowed.  About 6 miles into the course, there was a hill about 3/4 of a mile long, and then the course rolled for another mile along a ridge before diving down a steep descent with a tight chicane, and another plunging descent before a sharp left turn onto more twisting country roads. I figured there would be a lot of crashes during the TT.

 

That night at our hotel we met Pascal, a French rider originally from Montpellier in same region as Albi, but currently living in Perth, Australia with his wife and two sons. He had come to France early for family business and was pretty familiar with the area.

 

As we sat a dinner, I noticed an attractive blond woman at the next table who looked just like a rider from Norway, Sissel Vien, who had won the TT and Road Race for her age group in South Africa.  A few minutes later she stopped at our table and displayed a photo of me on the top of the podium in South Africa, and asked if that was me. It was really great to reconnect with her and we started chatting. Unfortunately, they had flown through Brussels where a baggage strike had delayed her bikes and she still did not have her bikes for the races. I hoped the airlines would come through and get her bike in time for the race.

 

Wednesday I felt “jet-lagged” more than the previous day, so we took it easy in the morning and headed over to the Parc Des Expos for packet pick-up, pre-race bike check and the Time Trial riders’ meeting. I was one of the first to go through the pre-race bike check & my bike passed easily. I attended the Rider meeting at 2PM to make sure I understood the details for the Time Trial the next day, and then jumped on my TT bike to ride the full course. The motor speedway was open for cyclists that afternoon to experience the start and finish. 

 

My Time Trial start time was 08:39:00 on Thursday, so we left Cordes-Sur-Ciel before 6AM to arrive in Albi before 6:30AM. Each country was assigned pit stop “bays” alongside the track for warming up: USA had 2, so we had a nice, clean, covered bay to set up the trainer and get ready. I had a perfect trainer warm-up; 33 minutes on the trainer and still had time to ride the track portion of the course before going to mandatory bike check & heading to the start house. They checked the bike meticulously, and scanned the bike for ”hidden motors” with an iPad detector. I drank another bottle of water while waiting in the staging area. My “30 second person” did not start, so I had a minute wait from the rider before me, another American named Diane Schleicher from Georgia.  I had a good start & was up to 28 mph with a tailwind on the speedway. The first technical element was exiting the speedway on to a small highway; a narrow ramp from the speedway down to the roadway & a sharp left-hand turn. I did not want to drop my bike in the first corner so I slowed enough to make it safely through, onto a few miles of flat to rolling roads with several tight corners and traffic circles. I never felt I could sustain a real “threshold” effort; with the acceleration and slowing, there’s no chance to hold a steady effort.

 

The hill felt harder than I expected but I stayed at an intensity I knew I could hold without completely blowing up. Once at the summit, I tried to hold the effort until I hit the descent. I grabbed the brake hoods & took the descent with as much speed as I could handle. In recon we figured out where to brake before the final sharp left-hand turn on to rolling farm roads. From there, 2 more hazards loomed; a fast slight down hill blind left corner with a sharp right turn dropping down a chute with about 5 miles to go, and a nasty roundabout with less then 5k to go. I did not win any prizes for speed on any of those rather hazardous, technical corners; I figured better to finish the race with the rubber on the road and I know I lost a lot of time in the corners.

 

I ended up 3rd in the Time Trial with only 7 seconds separating the top 3. Marti Valks of the Netherlands was first in 38.05, Nadine Niemerich of France was second at 38:06 and my time was 38:12.  Not exactly happy with my performance, but considering there were a lot of crashes, I was fairly satisfied.

 

On Friday, Pascal & I rode the Road Race course from Cordes-Sur-Ciel back to Albi.  After leaving Cordes, the course followed tiny farm roads that we would call “cow paths” here; narrow, winding roads through forests, farms and villages with doorways opening right on to the road. I was a little concerned about a big bunch trying to weave through this section. There were a couple of hills, including one deceptively long hill with a false summit that continued to climb. Past the 20k to go point, there were only minimal rollers, and the course dropped down into Albi, eventually ending up on the final kilometers of the TT course, but finishing from the opposite direction on the speedway.  We were met at the Parc Des Expos and then drove the section of the course heading out of town; the first half of the course. At the village of LePerdiges, Pascal rode off to check out the 155km course & I followed the 97 km course. This section was the start of the longest & steepest climb. The afternoon was hot and I kept my effort moderate as I checked out the course. The first feed zone was at the summit and the 50km mark followed. The pavement was good on the long swooping descent but I took it cautiously since the roads were open to traffic. The next section led into the long climb up to Cordes-Sur-Ciel where Pascal and I started.

 

On Saturday we drove to Albi for the Road Race riders meeting and some bike adjustments by Manu. We then practiced the long descent from Feed Zone 1. I concentrated on choosing a good line and keeping my speed up. After practicing some key sections a couple of times, I felt much more confident and was hitting higher and higher speeds on the descent top to bottom.

 

Sunday we left early for downtown Albi & the race start. We planned to park in one of the underground parking lots near the Cathedral de Sainte-Cecile to get ready for the race.  Riders were staged in 3 large holding “pens” prior to reaching the start at the Plaza de Sainte-Cecile.  As fields of racers left the start at 7-minute intervals, the next field moved into the start area. As riders entered the 2nd holding pen, bikes were scanned with the iPad detectors for hidden motors. My field was over 150 riders, and included Women 50-54, 55-59, 60-64, 65-69 and 70+. All women age 35-49 started 7 minutes before our field, so I figured we would run into dropped riders from the younger age groups out on the course. Age groups had different colored numbers, so it was easy to identify each category. All I cared about were the women with royal blue numbers; I didn’t care about the women with yellow, green, orange or dark red numbers; I just had to keep my eye on the royal blue numbers.

 

Although I tried to squeeze up to the front of the holding pen, I was several rows back and I could see one Australian rider in my category a few rows ahead on the left, and the 2nd place rider from the Time Trial, the French rider, Nadine Niemerich, up a couple of rows on the right. I was worried that if there was an early split in the field, there might be a rider in my category that I would not be aware of.  I would hate to lose the race because I didn’t realize someone in my category was up the road.

 

The first 2.5 km were neutral through twisting cobble streets leading away from the Cathedrale.  Once we hit the highway, we were racing and heading west out of Albi toward Marssac, aided by a tailwind. We were hitting speeds of 27 mph and I realized we might finish this race earlier than I expected. We made a right turn at Marssac and headed north. A few km’s later we hit a short hill and I easily passed the Australian in my category. I could see the French woman a few riders up, but she was not gaining any advantage on me. On the flats, the group with the Australian came back, but I saw no other riders in my category in the front group. Just before the village where the long and short course diverged, we hit another climb and the field really shattered. I pedaled frantically to pass dropped riders and bridged to the front group noticing the Australian was now gone and the French woman was the only person in my age group. 

 

When the 97km course turned at the village the climb began and the field thinned even more. I weaved around dropped riders and latched on to the wheel of the French woman. She was holding a steady pace up the climb; it was hard but I never felt I was pushed to my limit or was in any danger of being dropped by her. Near the summit we picked up some riders from the earlier start as well as riders from our starting field. We ended up with a group of around 12 riders including mostly yellow and green age groupers. My strategy was to stay with the French rider in our blue group. I could have attacked to get an advantage, but did I mention it was very hot. Why waste energy when best to conserve in case you need it for later in the race? Keep your allies close and your rivals closer.

 

Just before the Feed Zone 1, the French woman had someone stationed along the road and she got a fresh bottle. I noticed she never had more than 1 bottle on her bike.

 

Our group had picked up a few more dropped riders as we climbed up to Cordes with about 30km to go. We had set up for a bottle feed along the road into Cordes, but I was on the wrong side of the group so didn’t get a bottle but learned that there was no one in my group ahead of me. Leaving Cordes we followed the ”cow path” roads through the country to Feed Zone 2 and again, the French woman had a soigneur stationed along the road, picked up a fresh bottle; never carrying more than one. Most were relying on neutral feeds provided by the event.

 

From Cordes to Albi, there were some tight turns on descents through a couple of villages along the way. I took the corners cautiously because I didn’t want to go down in the last 30km. Lynne Anderson, one of our American friends in a younger group, was in a break, slid out in one of those turns and went over a barrier. Dazed but unhurt, a spectator got her chain back on, helped her onto her bike and gave her a push. She finished 2nd to a racer who passed her just as she got going.

 

During the last 20km, men from the earlier 155km races were catching and passing our group so we had to be aware of riders flying by. I kept riding smoothly and focused on holding my position. With about 5km to go, we were back on the last part of the Time Trial course and I realized things could get dodgy if riders from the other age groups starting duking it out. I was on the French woman’s wheel as we entered the Motor Speedway, and riders in the yellow and green age groups indeed started to sprint for minor placings. Stepping it up as we rounded the corner into the wind with 300m to go, I realized my only opponent was fading a little so I stood up with about 200m and sprinted in solo.

 

I was happy with the race and reported to doping control. My age group had not been selected for testing, so after double-checking with officials, I was free to go. Not so for Jeanie Longo or my friend Sissel Vien; with bikes coming in well under the UCI weight limit they were DQ’d.

 

The podium ceremonies are very elaborate.  The top 3 riders are called to the stage, introduced and awarded medals. Then the riders take the podium steps, riders are given bouquets and the national flags are displayed while the national anthem of the winner is played. I was the only winner from the USA in the Road Race, and never happier to belt out the ”Star Spangled Banner”, which I am told, could be heard in the back of auditorium. 

 

During the podium ceremony, there was a special award presented to Robert

Marchand, the 106 year old French rider who set the World Hour Record for the 105+ age group earlier on the year. While we were waiting backstage, the officials brought Robert Marchand up. He was quite nimble and gregarious, smiling and shaking hands with all the medalists. After the awards I was thrilled to have the opportunity to get a photo with him. This was one of the highlights of the event for me; truly an inspiration to meet someone who is 106 year old and still excited about cycling!  

 

Having raced at many Masters’ Nationals and UCI Masters’ Worlds, I have met and raced against riders from all over the world, that year after year show up at these events. I’m so grateful to have made friends with many of these people. Bravo Masters! I look forward to seeing you and to making new friends in Varese, Italy at next year’s event.

 

 

FTE Athlete Marcelo Moreira Takes 5th Overall at Ironman 70.3 Palmas, Brazil

Marcelo Moreira talks to head coach Scott Berlinger and says, "Best race of my life!  Couldn't have put more effort to achieve what I achieved yesterday!  And wearing my FTE uniform!  It was hot as hell here, and that Castelli fabric is awesome for hot races!"

Marcelo placed 5th among all competitors in the race, including the professionals.  He is a force to be reckoned with.  

Marcelo placed 5th among all competitors in the race, including the professionals.  He is a force to be reckoned with.  

Team Win at South Beach Triathlon 2017

FULL THROTTLE ENDURANCE

This year on April 2nd, 2017 Full Throttle endurance traveled to South Beach to once again take the Team Title at the race for a 10th time in a row.  It started with bike unload while scrounging for pedal wrenches, a morning swim in the ocean that made us question our swim attire and goggle shade, and bike rides along the thruway to warm up the legs and remind ourselves that the big day was here.  It was a hot, humid day.  With the water conditions up in the air and a team not sure of how to prepare for the heat, we conquered the course and congratulated many athletes who stood on the podium for their age groups and overall. 

 

 

Coach Scott Berlinger and his son Shane hold the team title with the many athletes who traveled and competed in the South Bach Triathlon

The coaching staff could not be any prouder of all your accomplishments.  It’s a pleasure to know you all and you all make the training and hard work fun, exciting, and enticing.   We are happy to congratulate many of our athletes who placed in the top 3 in their age groups:

Classic Distance:

Men’s Overall: Athlete Tim Henriot second overall

Men’s Age Group 25-29: Dixon Mcdonald 1st place

Men’s Age Group 30-35: Mike Foncannon 3rd place

Men’s Age Group 35-40 Benjamin Green 1st place

 

Men’s Age Group 45-549 Piers Constable 1st place

Men’s Age Group 50-54 William Kelly 1st place

Men’s Age Group 55-59 John Profaci 1st place

Men’s Age Group 65-69 Juerg Bandle 3rd place

 

 

 

Female Overall Aubrey Dreker 2nd place

Female Age Group 25-29 Lawler Watkins 3rd

Female Age Group 35-39 Jeanette Lee 1st place

Female Age Group 45-49 Karen Phillips 1st place

 

 

 

Female Age Group 50-54 Stacy Creamer

 

Female Age Group 60-64 Stasi Lubansky 1st place

International Distance

Male Age Group 20-24 Matthew Connelly 1st Place

 

Male Age Group 25-29 Conor Bollinger 2nd place

Male Age Group 50-54 Ray Camano 3rd place

 

Female Age Group 30-34 Olivia Malloy

Female Age Group 60-64 Candy Argondizza 2nd place

 

FTE Athlete Stacey Creamer nominated by NYRR as Runner of the Year

Stacy Creamer competed in her first triathlon in 1994 but didn’t get serious about multisport until about five years ago. She started riding with Full Throttle in 2009 and committed to the full program in January, 2010.
Stacy is a two-time ITU World Duathlon Championships bronze medalist (2009 and 2010) in the F50-54 division. In 2008, she was the USAT Duathlon National Champion in the F45-49 division and finished sixth in that age group at the ITU World Duathlon Championships in Rimini, Italy. In 2009, she took the bronze in the F50-54 division at the USAT National Duathlon Championships and in 2010 she took the silver. In 2011, she finished tenth in the F50-54 division at the ITU World Triathlon Championships in Beijing.
Stacy is a two-time overall winner of the Central Park Triathlon and a frequent age-group winner at Olympic-distance triathlons. In 2010, at age 50, she was the top overall age group finisher at the Nautica New York City Triathlon.
A 1981 graduate of Yale, Stacy is the publisher of Touchstone, a division of Simon & Schuster. Her authors include Lance Armstrong, John McEnroe, Kara Goucher, Dara Torres, Amanda Beard, mountain climber Ed Viesturs, cyclist David Millar, pop star Rick Springfield, former Guns n’ Roses bass player Duff McKagan, Marky Ramone of The Ramones, and Billy Idol. Other books she’s edited include New York Times bestsellers by Lauren Weisberger (The Devil Wears Prada), Elizabeth Edwards (Saving Graces and Resilience), and Douglas Blackmon (Slavery by Another Name). Slavery by Another Name was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for general nonfiction in 2009. Stacy lives in Manhattan with Stuart Calderwood and their son Kieran.

Here, Stacey sit atop the podium at the South Beach Triathlon

Here, Stacey sit atop the podium at the South Beach Triathlon

FTE Athlete Matthew Connelly finishes Manhattan Ultra Marathon

Full Throttle Endurance Member Matthew Connelly completed his 32 miles around New York City in 3rd place on November 19th, 2016. The race, taking place once a year, "The Madhattan" is the only ultra marathon on the island of Manhattan. It's a select group of 30 or so brave souls who make the trek once a year in November.  He completed his first ultra-marathon with a time of 4:36, averaging 8:38 per mile.

This is Matt's first year on the team, he has a strong background swimming and rowing at the collegiate level.  He is consistently a force to be reckoned with in the pool during practice.  He also performing well at Toughman Half 70.3 Championship at Bear Mountain, placing 14th overall and 1st in his AG 20-25.

Matthew, center, giving his feat a rest after his run around Manhattan

Matthew, center, giving his feat a rest after his run around Manhattan

The Indoor Time Trial Series

The Winter Indoor Time Trial Series at the Sports Center at Chelsea Piers kicked off Sunday, January 29 with racers following the profile of the Upper Freehold Time Trial, a rolling 10.46 mile course with 435 feet of elevation.  Andrew Kalley and Ann Marie Miller served as "race officials" for the event. Riders were given a 20 minute warm-up period to prepare for the Time Trial, and then racing started. Racing a course on the Computrainer was new to many of the riders, and posed new challenges to riders who are familiar with structured interval workouts on the Computrainer.  Riders had to ride as fast as possible and shift gears to accommodate changes in elevation. Racers quickly learned it's not just how "fit" you are - it's how efficient you are and how smooth you shift to maintain speed. The overall fastest Men's and women's times were Robert King, 27:48, and Aubrey Dreker, 31:51. Congratulations to our first overall winners and all those who raced!  Here is a list of finishers: Men Overall: Robert King                                 27:48 Nicola Mongelli                           28:04 Steven Lesser                             28:41 Eduard Vernede                         30:49 Andreas Lumineux                     37:19 Women Overall: Aubrey Dreker                            31:51 Gabrielle Alleau                         36:10 Marie Pierre Stark-Flora           43:54 Congratulations to all the racers & thanks to the Sports Center at Chelsea Piers. There are 2 more races in the Winter Indoor Time Trial Series, Feb. 12 and Mar. 19.  Here is the link to registration: https://www.chelseapiers.com/gym/training/performance-center/events-and-competitions/winter-time-trials/ Come test your early season fitness or join us to cheer the riders on in the next round of the Winter Indoor Time Trial Series at the Sports Center At Chelsea Piers! Ann Marie Miller, MA USA Cycling Level 3 Licensed Coach, ACSM(HFI) ammhotwheels@me.com (917) 716-7846

The Winter Indoor Time Trial Series at the Sports Center at Chelsea Piers kicked off Sunday, January 29 with racers following the profile of the Upper Freehold Time Trial, a rolling 10.46 mile course with 435 feet of elevation.  Andrew Kalley and Ann Marie Miller served as "race officials" for the event.

Riders were given a 20 minute warm-up period to prepare for the Time Trial, and then racing started.

Racing a course on the Computrainer was new to many of the riders, and posed new challenges to riders who are familiar with structured interval workouts on the Computrainer.  Riders had to ride as fast as possible and shift gears to accommodate changes in elevation. Racers quickly learned it's not just how "fit" you are - it's how efficient you are and how smooth you shift to maintain speed.

The overall fastest Men's and women's times were Robert King, 27:48, and Aubrey Dreker, 31:51.

Congratulations to our first overall winners and all those who raced!  Here is a list of finishers:

Men Overall:
Robert King                                 27:48
Nicola Mongelli                           28:04
Steven Lesser                             28:41
Eduard Vernede                         30:49
Andreas Lumineux                     37:19
Women Overall:
Aubrey Dreker                            31:51
Gabrielle Alleau                         36:10
Marie Pierre Stark-Flora           43:54
Congratulations to all the racers & thanks to the Sports Center at Chelsea Piers. There are 2 more races in the Winter Indoor Time Trial Series, Feb. 12 and Mar. 19.  Here is the link to registration:

https://www.chelseapiers.com/gym/training/performance-center/events-and-competitions/winter-time-trials/

Come test your early season fitness or join us to cheer the riders on in the next round of the Winter Indoor Time Trial Series at the Sports Center At Chelsea Piers!

Ann Marie Miller, MA
USA Cycling Level 3 Licensed Coach, ACSM(HFI)
ammhotwheels@me.com
(917) 716-7846

2017 Race Schedule Posted

The 2017 race season is here!  Please visit the 2017 FTE Calendar and navigate to the dates and links to register to each event.

2017 Full Throttle Endurance Race Schedule:

South Beach Triathlon; Sunday, April 2nd
Italy Cycling; May 5th-9th
Mighty Montauk; Saturday, June 10th
Pat Griskus Triathlon; Saturday, June 17th
Stamford Triathlon; June TBD
Hopkins Vineyard Triathlon CT; Saturday, July 15th
NYC Triathlon; Sunday, July 16th
USA Nationals; Omaha Nebraska; Saturday and Sunday, August 12-13th
Mighty Hamptons; Sunday, September 10th
Mightyman Montauk Triathlon; Sunday, October 1st

 

 

August Racing Recap

It’s been a very exciting month of racing! Here is a quick recap of some of the bigger races we’ve participated in recently.

USAT Age Group National Championships: Omaha, Nebraska

Many Full Throttle athletes represented at our team this year in Omaha at the 2016 USA Triathlon Age Group National Championships.  With temperatures reaching a humid 90 degrees by the time many athletes started the run segment of their race, the conditions were very trying to say the least. 

nationals-2.jpg

Despite the heat and a non-wetsuit swim, we managed to throw down some still very impressive times! Kim Jerome came in at a time of 3:03:59, and Dixon MacDonald finished in 2:25:25. Sam Martini had a similar time, pushing through the heat and pain to come in at 2:25:52.  Alex Goldhammer came through the chute with a strong time of 2:37:50 Stacy Creamer had her best performance at Nationals to date, coming in at 2:39:08 to take 6th place in her age group and claim her spot for Worlds!

And and last but certainly not least, our hats go off to Adrian Mackay, who took 2nd place in his age group in the Olympic, and 1st in his age group in the sprint, with times of 2:09:09 and 1:06:17 respectively!  Chapeau, good sir!

Congratulations to everyone who raced in Omaha, you made your team proud!  Check out this highlight reel (especially around 1:49!)

https://youtu.be/_U2vdyiglRI

 

Ironman 70.3 Timberman: Gilford, NH

We had several athletes compete at Ironman Timberman on August 21st in the Lake Winnipesaukee region in New Hampshire. While she couldn’t run due to an injury, Emily Walgenbach still managed an impressive swim and bike. Steve Borne had a time of 7:04, and Jonathan Byrne came in with a time of 5:22.

James Strol raced the Sprint on Saturday and came home with a new PR of 1:20:51, which got him 4th place in his age group.  Great job, James!

 

Ironman Mont Tremblant: Mont Tremblant, Québec, Canada

Meanwhile, North of the border in Québec, we had several athletes put down some strong times at Ironman Mont Tremblant. Conditions on the swim were choppy to say the least, and soon into the bike the rain started, and did not let up for most of the day.  

David Doherty had an amazing day, finishing at 9:55 despite the wind, rain, and hills.  Scott McGrath and Wyeth Hunnable both completed their first full Ironman distance races; coming in with times of 11:11, 11:43 respectively. Way to go, fellas!

Congratulations to everyone who raced! Stay tuned for announcements about our upcoming indoor charity triathlon. We'd like to also wish everyone a happy and safe Labor Day Weekend! Ride safely!

 

 

FULL THROTTLE TAKES NYC TRI TEAM TITLE. AGAIN.

Your 2016 New York City Triathlon Team Champions

Your 2016 New York City Triathlon Team Champions

While it wasn't quite as hot and humid as last year, conditions at last weekend's Panasonic New York City Triathlon were still tough, so much so that the run course was shortened by several kilometers as a precaution.  As tough as things were though, Full Throttle still prevailed, taking the most points overall to bring home the Team Champion trophy one more time.  

We had multiple podium finishing athletes to thank for this.  On the women's side, Stacy Creamer took 1st place in her age group, Ida Jarner took 2nd in her group, Aubrey Dreker took 3rd in her group. On the men's side, Sam Martini took 3rd place in his age group, Cesar Villalba and Marcelo Pinto took 3rd and 1st respectively in their group, and Dixon MacDonald took 3rd in his.  

It was an excellent day of racing. Congrats to everyone!