June 5, 2014
2014 Team Z Race Calendar Discussion
PLEASE take your time to read this email. I know there is a ton of information in here, so please print and/or save this where you can find it again. Including long ride/run weekends, recovery weeks for the year, etc.
It is important that you build a “race plan” for yourself to help guide you through the winter and summer, focus your training, and manage your personal budget and interests/goals. So take your time to plan – ask Ryan, Alexis, and I and your mentors if you have questions – and then….
ENTER THE RACES YOU WANT TO DO – as they open. THEY WILL FILL UP AND YOU WILL MISS THE BOAT IF YOU DRAG YOUR FEET. THAT IS A PROMISE.
A. There is absolutely NO way you can expect to participate at all of these races – Our goal is to provide as many opportunities for people to choose from as possible. The winter is definitely easier than the summer in making choices for you b/c the events tend to be less expensive and closer to home. And – to be honest – not that many people put races on from Dec-March due to the risk of weather. Thus – we invented our own race series last year and will make another run at it again this season.
B. Also – please remember that just b/c this is our race calendar it does not mean you can’t do other races . All our race calendar “means” is that we will be an effort behind an organized social type event (likely with trailer, tents, etc if possible/allowed). I’m sure there will be plenty of Zrs racing events like the Army 10 miler and Nations Triathlon – but we just can’t be everywhere all the time with the tents and trailer and many venues make it extremely difficult (or impossible) to provide the trailer race (e.g., The Pentagon, National Park Service, etc). I encourage you to consider your options now! Make your plan – and stick to it!
C. All of our race weekend events will be listed in the race calendar on the WEBSITE (not the yahoo group). If you go to the race calendar and click on the event name – it is hyperlinked to the registration pages. Here is a link (let me know if they are broken, many are not yet available)….
Link to Race Calendar (with hyper links to each race website that is available): https://triteamz.com/calendar.php
In this email:
1. Program Overview – Choosing your A Races
3. Prioritize Entering Races
4. Consider Your Budget
5. What if you don’t do a race – what will you do that weekend?
6. Review of Key Training Weekends – Additional Insight
7. MCM Considerations
8. Nations Triathlon, Army 10 miler
9. Discount Codes
10. Review of Race Calendar By Event
1. Program Overview – Choosing your A Races
The first step in planning your year is to determine what your focus races will be (otherwise referred to as “A” Races). The team voted on which races we would focus on as “A events”. In an ideal world, you will align your individual A race focus with those of the team. This is not required – but is sure does make life simple b/c your training plans will be dialed in exactly for those events. Also – it is simply a hell of a lot more fun to race at events with the team than a stand-alone event. If you’ve not been to one of our team races, you will see why this coming season!
A. Under 70.3 program Overview for 2013/14: If your goal is to train for 5 and 10k’s this winter, and/or Sprint and International Distance Races next summer…
Winter A Races: Choice of Shamrock 8k (Va Beach), The Scope it Out 5k (or both). These races are on back to back weekends, and there is no reason you could not race both and expect to do well!
Winter Comments: The Back Yard Burns are a trail series, and up to you if you’d like to participate. We will have group runs at alternate locations for those not racing (most will not race this – but we always have a decent group). Your local Turkey Trot is also optional – as it falls on a recovery week this year. Normally we’d use that as our track workout for the week – but it is up to you if you’d like to race. The Red Nose Runs will start in December – and will be race pace efforts for most of you. So I would consider these “important” to focus on with your calendar. Army 10 miler and Annapolis 1/2 marathon are not out of the realm of possibility – but for you most of you these are not intended as evens you would participate in.
Summer, First Half A Races: Mussleman Sprint (Geneva, NY), or Colonial Beach Triathlon. These are on the same weekend – so you will either travel to Geneva and race the Sprint, or stay local and race the Colonial Beach International and/or Sprint (yes you could do both if you wish, or relays).
Summer, First Half Comments: All Races are in play for your program except for Kinetic Half, Eagleman, MTB 70.3. Depending on your cycling background – you could consider the Mountains of Misery and Gran Fondo – but for most of you this will not be in play. The better option for newer cyclists would be to participate in the Wilderness Road Ride (vice Mountains of Misery) and if you’d like to go to Gran Fondo – they do have shorter options but all are challenging (and fun/beautiful).
You may participate in all of the races listed – but that is obviously a ton! My suggestion would be to sign up for (in addition to your A race) the Colony Zones Meet; either Kinetic Sprint or Columbia International; Rock Hall Sprint or International; and either Rev 3 International and/or General Smallwood Sprint or International. You can do more of course, and you can do less – but if you take my suggestion you would have 4-5 events between April and July. About 1 per month. Then you can sprinkle in other events as you find availability.
Summer, Second Half A Races: Your choice of Waterman’s Sprint or International, or Rev 3 Half Full International. Waterman’s will be moved to a new location next year, and moved up one week (that is the plan).
Summer, Second Half Comments: All Races are in play for you except for Savageman 1/2 and Ironman MTB. The second half of the season is much quieter (and slightly shorter). I would suggest that you race either Luray International or Sprint, and Nations Tri or Savageman International. Yes you can do both Savageman and Nations Tri – but you should at least do one or the other. Since there is a shortage of sprint opportunities before Waterman’s – newer triathletes should target doing relays at one of the International distance events if you do not have confidence in the longer distance yet. The Pool Sprint at South Riding is a huge opportunity for our newer athletes to gain experience before the end of the season A races. This would give you 3-4 events for July-Oct.
B. 70.3 program Overview for 2013/14 – if your goal is to race a winter 1/2 marathon and/or Half Ironman Distance Races next summer
Winter A Races: Choice of Shamrock 1/2 marathon (Va Beach) or DC RNR 1/2 Marathon, and The Scope it Out 5k (or both). Pick your poison with the half, and then plan to bounce back one week later with a fast 5k in the district.
Winter Comments: The Back Yard Burns are a trail series, and up to you if you’d like to participate. We will have group runs at alternate locations for those not racing (most will not race this – but we always have a decent group). Your local Turkey Trot is also optional – as it falls on a recovery week this year. Normally we’d use that as our track workout for the week – but it is up to you if you’d like to race. The Red Nose Runs will start in December – and will be race pace efforts for most of you. So I would consider these “important” to focus on with your calendar. Army 10 miler and Annapolis 1/2 marathon are not out of the realm of possibility – but for you most of you these are not intended as evens you would participate in. Track 3 and 4 people will be running 12-13 miles for training on the day of the Annapolis 1/2 – so it is a great opportunity for you. Track 1 and 2 people will not be at this volume yet.
Summer, First Half A Race: Mussleman Half (Geneva, NY). If you do not want to travel to Mussleman, you can still follow the 70.3 training program and race at Colonial Beach. They just don’t have a half Iron for you – but you can still build your volume if you are (for example) an Ironman Cozumel person.
Summer, First Half Comments: All Races are in play for your program. Depending on your cycling background – you could consider the Mountains of Misery and Gran Fondo – but for most of you this will not be in play. The better option for newer cyclists would be to participate in the Wilderness Road Ride (vice Mountains of Misery) and if you’d like to go to Gran Fondo – they do have shorter options but all are challenging (and fun/beautiful). Track 1 and 2 people will be at 40-50 miles in terms of long bike rides, and Track 3/4 will be at 70-80 miles in terms of long bike rides at this time of year (MoM, Fondo).
There really is no way you could do all of the races listed! My suggestion would be to sign up for (in addition to your A race) the Colony Zones Meet; either Kinetic Half or Columbia International; Rock Hall Sprint or International if you are feeling frisky; and either Rev 3 Half, Eagleman, or 70.3 MTB. None of these are A races – you just have to make your call. Smallwood is available if you are feeling up to it. You can do more of course, and you can do less – but if you take my suggestion you would have 4-5 events between April and July. About 1 per month. Then you can sprinkle in other events as you find availability.
Summer, Second Half A Races: Your choice of Waterman’s Half, or Rev 3 Half Full Half. Waterman’s will be moved to a new location next year, and moved up one week (that is the plan).
Summer, Second Half Comments: All Races are in play for you except for Ironman MTB. The second half of the season is much quieter (and slightly shorter). I would suggest that you race either Luray International or Sprint, and Nations Tri or Savageman International or Half. Yes you can do both Savageman and Nations Tri – but you should at least do one or the other. Since there is a shortage of Half Iron opportunities before Waterman’s – newer triathletes at the Half Iron should target doing the International distance events if you do not have confidence in the longer distance yet – Savageman Half is brutal and only for the most experienced and crazy among us. This would give you 3-4 events for July-Oct.
C. Ironman (Or Winter Marathon people) Overview for 2013/14
Winter A Races: Choice of Shamrock 1/2 marathon or marathon (Va Beach) or DC RNR 1/2 Marathon and marathon, and The Scope it Out 5k (or both). Pick your poison with the half or full marathon, and then plan to bounce back one week later with a fast 5k in the district. You do not have to run a marathon this winter to be ready for IM MTB. Totally your call on the 1/2 or full marathon.
Winter Comments: The Back Yard Burns are a trail series, and up to you if you’d like to participate. We will have group runs at alternate locations for those not racing (most will not race this – but we always have a decent group). Your local Turkey Trot is also optional – as it falls on a recovery week this year. Normally we’d use that as our track workout for the week – but it is up to you if you’d like to race. The Red Nose Runs will start in December – and will be four of the longest prep runs you will have if training for the marathon. So I would consider these “important” to focus on with your calendar. Army 10 miler and Annapolis 1/2 marathon are totally in play for you and your running volume will be at a level that these races are great options for you. You don’t have to race them – they are just a good opportunity to race if you are looking for it and fit well with your training plans.
Summer, First Half A Race: IM Mont Tremblant
Summer, First Half Comments: All Races are in play for your program. Mountains of Misery and Gran Fondo are in play for you as everyone’s long rides will be up around the 90 mile mark at this time of the year. But please understand that both Mountains of Misery and Gran Fondo are very hard. They are NOT requirements to be ready for IM MTB. The better option for newer cyclists would be to participate in the Wilderness Road Ride (vice Mountains of Misery) and if you’d like to go to Gran Fondo – they do have shorter options but all are challenging (and fun/beautiful). Or just stay home and do our local training rides – these supported bike rides are NOT required.
There really is no way you could do all of the races listed! My suggestion would be to sign up for (in addition to IMTB) the Colony Zones Meet; either Kinetic Half or Columbia International; Rock Hall Sprint or International if you are feeling frisky; and either Rev 3 Half, Eagleman, or 70.3 MTB. None of these are A races – you just have to make your call. Eagleman is dead flat. I would think that 70.3 Mont Tremblant or Rev 3 Williamsburg Half would be your better choices considering the Ironman Course. Smallwood is available if you are feeling up to it. You can do more of course, and you can do less – but if you take my suggestion you would have 4-5 events between April and August. About 1 per month. Then you can sprinkle in other events as you find availability.
Summer, Second Half A Races: Ironman Cozumel
Summer, Second Half Comments: All Races are in play for you except for Ironman MTB. You will likely have just raced Mussleman – or at least finished the 70.3 program during the first half of the summer. I would suggest that you race either Luray International or Sprint, and Nations Tri or Savageman International or Half. Yes you can do both Savageman and Nations Tri – but you should at least do one or the other. You are DEFINITELY racing Waterman’s Half as a prep race for Ironman Cozumel. This would give you 3-4 events for July-Nov.
As we approach the second half of the race season you will begin to see (starting next week likely) notes from Coach Alexis over the yahoo groups organizing relays. Our team puts together a TON of relays every year, for any race that allows them. The relays are great for many reasons. Obviously if you are new to the sport and want to build confidence in one leg or another before you attempt a “full” tri on your own – this is a great way to get involved by volunteering to do the leg (or legs – you can do two) that you are comfortable with. It is also a great way for people that are injured to be able to compete and have fun (example – can’t run, but can ride or swim).
Lastly (and importantly) – many of our event weekends are very cheap and take place over two days. Some people will do both races on both days – but other people may find those people crazy. Doing a relay for fun on one day and racing the other is probably the biggest reason our relays are put together. Are you an ex swimmer? Maybe do the Oly on Saturday by yourself and volunteer to do the swim for a new Zr on Sunday at the sprint. You get the point. When we send an email asking about relays – just respond if interested.
In planning for the year – Consider which events you would like to do a relay at when thinking about your race plan for the summer.
3. Prioritize Entering Races
Some races will fill up faster than others – and thus should take a priority in terms of registration. Other races are MORE IMPORANT TO YOU and should also take priority over others. If you have the cash and can enter all the races you plan to do – I would highly encourage that you do so and soon.
In 2011 – almost every race we participated in filled 3-4 months in advance of the race date. EVERY SINGLE ONE. In 2012 and 2013 – we did not experience the same scenario. Many races did not fill for some odd reason. This is the first stretch in as long as I can remember that we had this luxury. Having said that, do not expect it to be easy this year. You can simply never tell.
- Races that are already full for 2013/2014: Ironman Mont Tremblant – has only foundation slots remaining, Ironman 70.3 Mont Tremblant
- Races that likely will fill up very soon, are more important to enter as soon as you can: Any Back Yard Burn, DC RNR 1/2 or Full Marathon, Va Beach Shamrock 1/2 or Full Marathon. Eagleman is already open – and will fill soon. Mussleman Triathlon (registration opens Nov 13)- if this is your goal mid-season race I would enter it as soon as it opens. Ironman Cozumel in November – obviously.
- Races that can wait – but are mid level priority for registration. Kinetic Half/Sprint normally fills, Columbia Triathlon.
- At this point all other races are not likely an issue or anything we need to worry about until spring. However -note that many races have early bird pricing if you register over the winter.
4. Consider Your Budget
Local Races (South Riding Pool Sprint, Nations Tri, Army 10 miler, various 5k’s/10k’s/, colony Zones swim meet, Jim Mcdonal Lake Swim – ALL of our winter races): These races can be “expensive” to enter considering how short it is (price vs distance of the event), however – it is LOCAL and when you consider gas and lodging, and convenience – it is very cheap. This is ideal for busy folks, parents, new athletes who want to gain experience in less intimidating environment (no mass start, no open water, can walk the swim if you like, etc). You will be home by noon. 🙂
Drive to Races the day of: I consider the following races “driveable” the day of. This is the majority of our race calendar. Sure – you may have to get up early – but you can drive to the event the day of, compete, and drive home. (Kinetic, Columbia, Rock Hall, General Smallwood, Colonial Beach, Luray, Waterman’s).
Camping Races: (Kinetic, Columbia, Eagleman, Wilderness/Mountains of Misery, Mussleman, General Smallwood, Luray, Savageman, Waterman’s): These are all races where we will have team car camping options. Luray is FREE camping. Kinetic (Lake Anna State Park), Columbia (Patapsco State Park), Smallwood (General Smallwood State Park), and Savageman (Deep Creek Lake State Park), are state parks – where the facilities are outstanding for camping (warm showers, etc). I would highly encourage you to invest in a tent and an air mattress. I camp at most races if I can to save money – and I can bring my dog. We have a ton of fun at these events. Example – many folks will show up on Friday night and pitch a tent. We eat off the grill and have a cocktail – hang out by the lake. Saturday we have breakfast, race, then lunch and hang out on the lake all day – playing in the sun (sun NO RAIN). Camp out again at night – wake up and relay the next day, hang out and have more fun. Total cost if you have a tent? For two dinners, two breakfasts, two lunches, and all the fun you can handle – $40 to the grub fund.
Food: If you can’t eat at a rental house – Team Z does a great job providing breakfast, lunch, and dinner at race sites. Expect Grub Fund Donations of $5 for breakfast and lunch, and $10 for dinners. Plan an extra $1 per can/drink. 🙂
5. What if you don’t do a race – what will you do that weekend?
In most cases we will have local workout options. These will in many cases be “brick workouts” or “race simulations” where you will ride and run a prescribed distance that is in line with your training programs. Again – there is NO way we expect you to be able to participate in all of these races! It just won’t happen! So pick the one’s that interest you the most. IF you don’t go – expect us to have a brick workout at home (example: 2 hour ride, 1 hour run).
6. Review of Key Training Weekends – Additional Insight
Disclamor: THIS IS A PLAN AND PLANS CAN CHANGE! We try not to -but it can happen.
A. Recovery Weeks for Winter 2013 and through Summer 2014. Each of these dates are a MONDAY which is the first day of the recovery week. There are obviously more “down weeks” including race weeks, taper weeks, transition – these are simply the recovery weeks for the year. This is useful information in planning work travel, vacation, special weeks for the significant other who sacrifices so much for you and your participation in the sport. Set these aside to do good things with them!
- These dates are the remaining Monday’s in 2013 that begin a recovery week: Oct 14, Nov 4 and 25, Dec 16
- These dates are Monday’s in 2014 that begin a recovery week: Jan 6 and 27, Feb 17, March 10 and 17 are Race Weeks, April 7 and 28, May 19, June 9 and 30, July 7 is a race week, July 21, Aug 11, Sep 1 and 22.
- Cozumel Recovery week dates beyond Sept: Oct 13, Nov 3
B. Key Long Ride and Run Weekends: These “key” weekends are key for all racers – meaning they are big ride or run days for everyone regardless of if you are on the under 70.3 track, or the 70.3 track. Keep in mind – these are planned weekends and the actual day may not be representative. Look to the weekend file for current plan (Team Z Yahoo Group, Files Section – Weekends for 2013/2014 file). We have planned out the entire year – and this is a plan. IT CAN CHANGE:
Below I will call out the long ride number for the Iron crew – as you see this volume increase just know that if you were a half person you are increasing too, same with Oly. So these are key training weekends for everyone – not just Ironpeople. For Iron crew -the mileage may vary slightly depending on the program you are following.
- Long Ride Key Weekends Through Ironman Mont Tremblant: April 19/20 – 70 miles, April 26/27 – 80 miles, May 17/18 – 90 miles, May 30/June 1 – 100 miles, June 28/29 – 110 miles. (For Mussleman and Colonial Beach People – taper starts around here so these remaining long rides do not apply to you). July 19/20 – 120 miles.
- Long Run Key Weekends Through Ironman Mont Tremblant: April 26/27 – 12 miles, May 17/18 – 14 miles, May 30/June 1 – 16 miles, June 28/29 – 18 miles. (For Mussleman and Colonial Beach People – taper starts around here so these remaining long rides do not apply to you). July 19/20 – 20 miles.
- Long Ride Key Weekends Through Ironman Cozumel: Aug 9/10 – 70 miles, Aug 23/24 – 80 miles, Aug 29/30 – 90 miles, (For Half Full and Waterman’s People – taper starts around here so these remaining long rides do not apply to you), Sep 20/21 – 100 miles, Oct 11/12 – 110 miles. Oct 25/26 – 120 miles.
- Long Run Key Weekends Through Ironman Cozumel: Aug 9/10 – 12 miles, Aug 23/24 – 13 miles, Aug 29/30 – 14 miles, (For Half Full and Waterman’s People – taper starts around here so these remaining long rides do not apply to you), Sep 20/21 – 16 miles, Oct 11/12 – 18 miles. Oct 25/26 – 20 miles.
C. Training Camps: There will be an Ironman MTB training camp (which is the 70.3 Mont Tremblant Race Weekend). There will also be a beach training camp at Rehoboth for the flat land end of season races (Waterman’s and Cozumel) the weekend of Sept 20/21. Anyone is welcome to come.
7. MCM Considerations
As we mentioned early, and often – MCM is not a great choice for an A race b/c where it falls is so close to the end of our race season. You will have to make MCM a total “B” race. I’m not saying you can’t do both – though I don’t recommend it b/c it is such a big conflict with our end of season A races. When we are tapering you for our end of season A race is when we would be increasing and maxing your volume before taper for MCM. So – we will offer a “suggestion” for how to best handle this in the coming weeks. I’ll provide mileage guidance for your long runs. Your general fitness will be great, and you should be able to run the race. But I want you to understand that your training would not be ideal. What does this mean? Hard to say. Depends on your background and expectations. You may PR MCM still – but if you do I can’t wait to train you properly for a marathon over the winter and see what you are really capable of! If your goal is to just finish – we can do that certainly. If you decide to enter and race MCM (I do not think you should if you want to train for triathlon) how we will support you is…
A. After the Mid-Season A Races (Mussleman, Colonial Beach) Choose one of our team 1/2 Ironman A races for October
B. Follow that plan
C. I will advise you on when and where to add in longer run mileage to make sure you can complete MCM as best as possible, and ideally injury free with a smile on your face.
8. Nations Triathlon, Army 10 miler
These will not be trailer supported events. There will be many Zrs participating at these races – but will need to fend for yourself. Just like the Rif Raf! They will still be fun, awesome events. But unless something changes “at the top” it is not likely we will be able to support them in anyway (Security, National Park Service Rules, etc).
9. Discount Codes
We have discount codes for Set Up Events, Luray, and Gran Fondo. Set Up Events on our calendar include: Savageman, Kinetic, Rock Hall, and Waterman’s. Please email coached Ed for discounts.
10. Review of Race Calendar By Event
Sunday, November 10 – Back Yard Burn (BYB) 5 and 10 mile ”“ Wakefield (Annandale, Va) -This is a trail and off road race. This will be a 100% fun event as it kicks off the end of the first week of official winter training after our post race recovery weeks. This race will fill very soon so enter if you’d like to race it. We will have an alternate run workout for the day locally. IF you race this – Choose the 5 or 10 mile race based on your current fitness level. Please be advised that these are technical trail runs, which are a little more difficult than running on flat/pavement type surfaces. We will not have trailers or tents at these races, but we will organize around them. They are fun times.
Sunday, November 17 ”“ Back Yard Burn 5 and 10 mile-PWF Park(Triangle, VA)
See BYB above
Saturday, November 23 – Annapolis Half Marathon – This race is in play for all winter Marathon people, and track 3/4 Half Marathon People. The rest of you will not have the volume in hand yet to participate in this race. Those of you with years of experience and on Track 1/2 half marathon can override my advice and race if you know your history. But your training volumes will be in the 7-8 mile range at this point. Under 70.3 program people should not participate in this race.
Thanksgiving Day – Local Turkey Trots – Your call. Have some fun!
Sunday, December 4 – Back Yard Burn Hemlock Overlook (Clifton, Va) – See BYB above
Saturday, Jan 4 – Team Z Red Nose Run #1 (RNR) ”“ TBD Location. We started our own race series 3 years ago to provide you unique and “race like” setting for your four “last” and “key” long training runs before you peak for the March races. This race will happen at the end of your third to final build cycle (eg, 16 mile run for marathon people, third to longest/hardest run for 1/2 and 5k/10k people, etc.)You will run the exact mileage that is prescribed in your training plan for that day. So many runners will be running different distances. The winner will be determined by predicted time. You will predict your finish time at registration. You will not be allowed to wear a heart rate monitor or a watch while you race. The person who comes closest to the predicted time (divided by # of miles run) will be declared the winner. We will have some kind of awards for the winners.Race entry fee will be minimal and will cover our expenses (and your post race food). Proceeds will go to charity.
Sunday, Jan 26 – Team Z Red Nose Run #2 ”“ TBD Location – See RNR above. This race will happen at the end of your second to final build cycle (eg, 18 mile run for marathon people, third to longest/hardest run for 1/2 and 5k/10k people, etc.)
Saturday, February 15 – Team Z Red Nose Run #3 ”“ TBD Location- See RNR above. This race will happen at the end of your second to final build cycle (eg, 20 mile run for marathon people, third to longest/hardest run for 1/2 and 5k/10k people, etc.)
Sunday, February 23 – Team Z Red Nose Run #4 – TBD Location – This will be your last key run (16 miles for marathoners).
Saturday March 15 – Rock and Roll USA Marathon and Half Marathon – This is one of our end of winter A race choices. This will likely fill, and close. Don’t sleep on this race. There will likely not be an organized Tent/Trailer type of support for this event. The advantage to this race is that it is local – and thus the less expensive option b/c you avoid travel.
Saturday/Sunday March 15/16 – Shamrock Marathon, Half Marathon, and 8k – This is one of our end of winter A race choices. This WILL FILL AND IT ALWAYS DOES AND PEOPLE ALWAYS GETCLOSED OUT. ENTER IT TODAY. This race is flat and fast – especially if the wind cooperates. This race does require travel – but there will be cheap hotels and we can pair up as much as possible (it is Va Beach in the off season). The huge advantage to this race is that it has a really cool post race party on the beach. The Race Director sets up a HUGE tent on the beachand has a stage with rock bands. The place is packed with free keg beer andfree food for post race party. I’ve honestly never seen a post race party like this one.
Sunday March 24 – Scope it out 5k – the week after the DC RNR weekend is the Scope it out 5k. We will support this race with meeting points before and after and a small tent presence. We have been supporting this race for years as it was founded by an original Zr in honor of the memory of her father. It is also a chance for others to come out and simply lay the smack down on a flat and fast course. This is a DC race Easy in and out. We will also do our annual gig as volunteers for the “polyps”. Always fun – more details to come. This WILL BE our team group workout for the day. NO other events aside from a ride the prior day.
Friday April 18 – Colonies Zones Swim Meet – This swim meet will take place on Friday night before a recover weekend. It is at George Mason University – a very nice facility. If you are a new triathlete, and more importantly a new swimmer – this is something that I would highly consider! There will not be an intimidating environment – you don’t have to dive in, you don’t have to do flip turns. You get your own lane, and a teammate or coach will be there to count laps for you! This is a great (I can’t stress this enough) opportunity to prove to yourself that you can swim 1,000 yards or 1,650 yards (about the same distances as a sprint and Olympic distance triathlon swim) in a safe, and FUN environment. Every year we send about 40 people (last year almost 100 of us) to this race and they always tell us how much fun they had! Enter that 1,000 yard freestyle – you won’t regret it! IT WILL FILL UP!
Saturday May 3 – Arlington Science Focus 5k – This is a grass roots, no frills, local 5k which benefits a good friends elementary school phys ed program. Proceeds go to improve the fitness equipment on the play ground, etc. This race will also be on a recovery week for everyone. IF you do not race with us, there will be other local group run options on Sunday. But this is our group run for Saturday. Long runs on your schedules will range from 5-10 miles for Under 70.3 programs, and 10-14 miles for 1/2 and Ironman people. SO this is ideal for the under 70.3 people. Get in a 2-3 mile warm up, then do the 5k and call it a day! Come out and help out a great cause ($20ish dollar entry fee, you do get a shirt and there are awards). Zrs tend to steal a ton of hardware at this race.
Saturday/Sunday May 10/11 Kinetic 1/2 and Sprint – This race always seems “early” in the season. Volume is just climbing and it is usually the first hot weekend of the year. The expectation is that you are doing this race as a high quality brick workout in a race environment. If you do not race with us, there will be a group brick workout on Saturday back at home. There will be no workout on Sunday (Mothers day). This is a big camping race weekend – at Lake Anna State Park (very convenient, clean warm private showers, etc). If you want to camp – GET ON IT as the park fills up fast and early (reserve now). Under 70.3 people should race the sprint at Kinetic. 70.3 and 140.6 people should enter either the half or the half aquabike at Kinetic. You do not have to – it is your choice. But we do have a 3 hour ride and 1 hr run built into your training. It is up to you – but I would suggest Kinetic for 70.3 and 140.6. This race is early in the season so volume is not SUPER HIGH yet. So, you can do the half or the aqua bike – just understand that it is an early race and you should NOT set your expectations for the fastest day of your life. Your performance at this race should be aligned with “long hard workout” and not “kick ass first 1/2 Ironman”.
Sunday May 18 – Columbia Triathlon – This will be the second time back to this event for us after many years. The plan is a trailer event, though the venue is not super supportive (not tons of room). We’ll have some support there for sure. This is a very hard Olympic Distance event (very very very hilly). It is a very crowded course (2,000 people) for an olympic. It is also a very very fast field. Test yourself against this race if you have some experience – but likely not a great first timer event. You have to rack your bike on Saturday (mandatory) and the race is on Sunday. Under 70.3 people – you will skip your workouts for this weekend if you race Columbia. 70.3 people have between a 60-80 mile ride and 16 mile run this weekend as part of your training. Ironman MTB people – you all have a 90 mile ride and 14 mile run this weekend. Keep that in mind. I would not skip the ride under any circumstance. Skipping the run to race Columbia is ok – but your call.
Saturday/Sunday May 24/25 – Reston 1 and 2 mile lake swims (and 5k) – You can’t do this and the MoM and Wilderness Road Ride. You have to choose. There will be a group ride on Saturday and a group run AFTER the swim with a social (bbcue) on Sunday. You can do the group ride and run without entering the swim – or you can also do the swim before the group run. You can choose the 1 mile or 2 mile swim, and wetsuits are legal/optional. This is a great chance to practice your open water swimming. IF you want to do the 5k swim on Saturday – be a monster. This is a recovery week for everyone – so any long rides you do are “bonus”. 🙂
Saturday and Sunday May 24/25 – Wilderness Road Ride and Mountains of Misery – This race falls on a recovery weekend – so no major workouts. You can’t do this race and the Reston Lake Swim. These are not races, but supported bike rides with planned aid stations, stops, etc. MTM will fill, but Wilderness Road Ride will not. The area is SO BEAUTIFUL and the rides are just fantastic. The lodging will be cheap – The hotels you’ll stay at will be at Va Tech – Blacksburg in the summer. Tons of availability. If you choose to camp – it is like $6/7 for the weekend – no showers though. We will also do group lodging/rentals as available. The MTM rides are VERY VERY difficult and not for new riders. The wilderness road ride is much more tame – there are rolling hills but it is not masochistic. We had several new riders go and enjoy every minute. The WRR is on Saturday morning. Leisurely ride and pace – enjoy the beautiful roads and scenery. Then hang out in the parking lot on the river with a tent, some grub, etc – head out to dinner as a group in BBurg and have some fun or kick it at the camp site. Sunday – those not riding MTM will go and hike to the Cascades – a very scenic rock scramble (but dogs, etc can do it easily) up to a water fall. After the hike – we’ll grab grub at a RIDICULOUS country diner where you can get ANYTHING deep fried. I’m not kidding. Entire Hamburgers I think. Then we head up onto the mountain with beer and cheer to will home our MTM studs on the final climb of the day (very much Tour De France like). Very cool. The race ends at the famous Mountain Lake – which is where Dirty Dancing was filmed.
- Under 70.3 Programs: you should do the Wilderness ride. They have distances of 14, 29, 38, 58 and 78 miles. Track 1 and 2 people will have done rides of 30-40 miles or slightly more – and if being safe should consider the 29 or 38. Track 3 and 4 people will have done several 50 mile rides – do the 38 or 58.
- 70.3 – Track 1 and 2 will have done 50-60 miles in training – consider the 38 or 58. Track 3 and 4 will have done 70’s – consider the 58 or 78. IF you want to try the MTM, I would strongly suggest the 100 miler and not the double metric. To prepare for it – you will have to add miles to all of your long rides starting in April – Let us know if you need help.
- IM – You will have done rides of 90 miles, maybe a hair more. Again, suggest the 100 miler.
Saturday/Sunday May 30/June 1 – Rock Hall Sprint and Olympic – This race will be swum in a sheltered Marina on the bay – just over the bay bridge and to the north a hair. Very convenient and pretty. It has been a great first timers event since the swim is in sheltered water and the course is fairly flat. We will camp for cheep at this race and eat crabs by the bushel. This is a great first timers race, and we have a blast every year. Think Crabs and beer on Saturday night!
Sunday June 8 Eagleman 1/2 Ironman 70.3 – This is a very flat and fast course – if the wind and heat cooperate. The swim is in the choptank river which gets its name for a reason. If the wind is up, the swim can be challenging. As can the bike course. So it is a fast course for the most part – but it is a very competitive field and not the most beginner friendly environment. If you have a choice and are new to the sport – I would choose the Rev 3 half over the eagleman 70.3 for my first. You don’t have to – its just a suggestion. Ironman Mont Tremblant people – you should be doing Rev 3 Williamsburg or 70.3 MTB as your prep races (not this flat one).
Sunday June 15 Rev 3 Half and Olympic – A race for the majority of the team. Party it up! This is not a flat course – and should not be compared to the Setup Events race that we have done before (Patriots). This is a different course and while it shares the same swim area – it does not have the same course. This is a great race for families (Colonial Williamsburg).
Saturday June 21- Gran Fondo – Gran Fondo basically means “big social ride”. This is not a race – but a well supported super challenging and breathtaking bike ride. The shorter rides have hills and are very challenging – but trust me it is doable for everyone if you pace yourself. And honestly guys – its “God’s Country” out there. SUPER pretty. Ironman people – you will have a long brick scheduled for this weekend – so if you do the Fondo you will skip the brick (it is ok – especially if you raced Williamsburg 1/2).All other training programs – you also have a brick this weekend so participating in the fondo would replace that workout. The long riders can choose between the Mashochistic Metric, Savage Century, or Diabolical Double and you will be paying dearly as you climb the final ascent to the top of Wisp. I would suggest that most of you do the masochistic metric or the savage century – or even shorter. 70 miles out there is likely as hard or worse than 112 at Lake Placid. We will set up a grill/cheer station on the side of the mountain for the final climb, and last year had riders thank us profusely for being there. They said they could hear our horns and bells from far, far away. On Sunday we will do a run and an open water predicted time swim in Deep Creek Lake – from the Race Director’s Dock. We’ll hang out and barbecue, let the dogs swim, etc.
Sunday June 22- Big Savage Hill Climb – We’ve not done this event before, but I’m interested if we have any takers. This ride is on Sunday, after the Gran Fondo and takes place on Big Savage Mountain. It is a legit race from the bottom of westernport to the top of the mountain. It is only about 7 miles long – but it is all up hill. We’ll see if any of you are interested? This race is pretty much for experienced, or expert cyclists.
Sunday June 22- 70.3 Mont Tremblant – This is serving as our training camp weekend for IM MTB. Nobody is expected or required to go, and on the same note – anyone who wants to participate that weekend is also welcome to attend. The race is already full – but you can still road trip and hang out and ride/run a little bit if you are interested. Those of you doing the 70.3 and 140.6 Program will have a long brick this weekend. Either you do the Gran Fondo, Race IM MTB – or you will have a long brick (4 hr ride/1-1.5hr run). So you could do this on Saturday in Mont Tremblant if you did not get into the race. Or you could stay home and do the brick with us.
Friday/Saturday/Sunday July 11-13 – Mussleman Triathlon Weekend – This is one of our A Races – obviously a Travel Race. Those of you looking to save some coin should opt for the local Colonial Beach Triathlon the same day. Mussleman is in wine country – 6.5-7 hours away if you are not pulling a trailer on country roads. And yes – we do the tricycle race on Friday. WAY FUN. They actually award cash to the best costume and winner of the micro mussel – a 100 yard swim (or so), race on a tricycle or bigwheel, short run. The race directors love us and put us right on the finish line – they go out of their way to make us feel welcome.
Saturday/Sunday July 12/13 – Colonial Beach Triathlon – This is our other A race option for the mid season. 2014 will make the 30th year for these races. The swim starts out with a swim in the Potomac river. This is then followed by a mostly flat bike course through mostly rural countryside. Upon your return to the beach athletes will embark on a flat, fast out and back run course.
Saturday Aug 9- Luray Practice Swim There is a practice swim in the Lake where the race is being held the next weekend. The practice swim is on Saturday. They also offer a “full clinic” or just the “swim clinic”. Please enter just the swim clinic. Saturday morning we will swim, then run on the Luray Triathlon course, then lunch as a team and lazy around the lake and campground all day long. FUN PRACTICE WEEKEND and chance to preview the Luray triathlon course. IMMTB people you have a 6 mile run this day. GREAT opportunity to get in and swim one more time in the Open Water before your race, and then do the run/hang out for a bbcue with us.
Saturday/Sunday Aug 9/10 – Age Group Nationals. We’ll see how we can support this based on participation from the team. Milwaukee WI.
Saturday/Sunday Aug 16/17 Luray International and Sprint and camping trip – There will be NO group workouts this weekend other than Luray and Ironman MTB. All I can say is that for some reason – this race is always just off the hook. So much fun. We have the chance to camp for free, again – or its an easy drive from the city on the day of. Please enter this ASAP as it will fill, and I know you’ll want to do it. Everybody is doing it. 🙂
Sunday Aug 17 – Ironman Mont Tremblant – Anyone is welcome to come, even if you are not racing. Make a long weekend/vacation out of it! It will be our first season here as a team, and we are looking forward to what is supposed to be a beautiful Ironman (even nicer than Lake Placid?). This is the same weekend as Luray – so those of you wanting to go to Canada would not enter obviously!
Sunday Aug 24 – South Riding Pool Sprint – Registration typically opens April 1 for non-south riding residents, but keep your eye out. It will fill fast so put it on your calendar. This race is in Loudoun County – you’ll be home by noon! Pool sprint, fast course – and fun. Many Zrs have done it in the past and had a blast. IF you do not do this race we will have our standard workouts for the weekend. This is a great race for anyone who has a hard time “Getting away”. It is flat, and fast. It is small and non-threatening – and the swim is in the pool so it is awesome for newer triathletes to gain experience. We will support it just like any other race!
Sunday Sept 7 – Nations Triathlon – As with every year for this race – it is an unsupported team event. The National Park Service and local police are very much against “the world’s biggest tailgate” happening on the National Mall and/or Pennsylvania Avenue. But every year you will see a good mix of Zrs racing. But be clear – there is no team support for this event so you will be on your own race day. It is not cheap to enter, but with no associated travel costs it is a great option, especially for people for whom getting out of town for a weekend is difficult.
Saturday/Sunday Sep 13/14 – Savageman Olympic and Half – This is another of our DO NOT MISS EVENTS. I would encourage everyone to try and make it to this race at least just to have fun. Plan on a relay for the oly at least, and volunteer/spectate for the 1/2. For those of you racing this…the 1/2 Iron is one of the most difficult races in the world and it is not for beginners. Please heed this warning. The Olympic distance is challenging – but a very realistic accomplishment for most people on our team. Be aware this is still a challenging course for the olympic – but its a great goal to work towards. We should have a ton of relays for the oly and the half. And even if you do not want to race – it is so worth the trip. Normally watching a triathlon is not very much fun. The half Iron at this race is something to see, no…behold. It has a tour de france feel and energy – and some of the “hills” these riders climb will be lined with 100’s and 100’s of spectators screaming and yelling at them to not fall over. The general feel of the event is that of a carnival – and it was voted hardest half Ironman by triathlete magazine. DO NOT MISS IT! However – Ironman Florida people – you have a 110 mile ride this weekend, and an 18 mile run. We will host those workouts at home for you.
Sunday October 5 – Rev3 Half Full Half Iron or Olympic. This is one of our two end of summer A race options and it is a great environment for all levels of athletes. However – it is NOT flat. It is hilly – so keep that in mind when choosing between Waterman’s or Rev 3 for your first 1/2 Iron or first Olympic. It is not “undoable” and is not soul crushing like Savageman – but it is not a flat course. The course is in Columbia Maryland and pretty damn convenient. For the olympic distance people – there is no reason you should not be doing both Rev 3 Oly AND Waterman’s sprint OR Oly. You’ve trained all year, go at it and compare a flat race to a hilly race!
Saturday/Sunday October 4/5 – Waterman’s Sprint and Half (maybe Olympic) – This is one of our two end of summer A race options. This will likely be at a new venue – which will still be flat and great for first time 1/2 option for newbies in the sprint or olympic as it is flat. Ironman Cozumel people – this is your training race for CAM. Flat and fast – you should be doing the 1/2 Iron at this event. Plan on camping and staying for relays…this should be a great way to end the season.
Sunday Oct 19 – Army 10 miler. Army 10 miler is another unsupported Team Race. Again, security is the main obstacle for us so we just avoid the risk of getting in trouble. Obviously it is local – so a great way to get in a good workout. Great Cause, great environment, great race!
Sunday November 30 – Ironman Cozumel. Whoop ass. Again – you don’t have to be doing Ironman to come down and party with the crew. We have almost 40 people racing and it is a cheap cheap cheap Ironman destination. As always, Ironman is off the hook!