Being totally immersed

Last weekend, I had the great pleasure of attending a three-day Swim Camp with five  #StartlineCoaching athletes in St. Petersburg, Florida. The swim camp, hosted by my long time coach, mentor, and friend Coach Earl Walton of #TailwindEndurance was an incredible experience.

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Apart from the joys of swimming outside in February, each of us came away with substantial improvement in swim form and speed that we can focus on as the training season progresses. Nothing beats being totally immersed in a single sport for an entire weekend. So much progress can be made. A number of the athletes came away with 10+ secs/100 improvements in their swim time trial pace, which is huge.

It was great meet and work with skilled swim coaches Roderick Sewell, & Rudy Garcia-Tolson, both highly accomplished Para Swimmers. An absolute inspiration to swim with and to be coached by.

Two major takeaways from the Tailwind swim camp that I would like to share as you work on your swimming:

  1. Body Position – Nothing affects swim performance more than poor alignment and body position.  As your lead hand enters the water, ensure that it follows the line of your shoulder, through to your hip and feet. Stretch out fully, maintaining that line as you rotate your body during the stroke. Here are some tips for doing so:
    • Be sure you can see your hand as it stretches forward. Your body follows your hands so be sure you know where they are.
    • Open your armpit to maximize the length of your stroke. Be patient and extend as your body rotates.
    • Let your hips drive the rotation, and stretch. Extend your stroke as your hip rotates. The rotation is about your hips, not your arms. Let the hips lead.
  2. Capturing momentum – ‘Capturing momentum’ is about enabling your body to streamline while it has momentum, capturing that momentum, and applying it the next stroke before you lose the momentum by over gliding. It is much harder to build momentum than maintain it. Here are some tips for doing so:
    • Stretch past the point of entry with your hand, armpit, and hips.
    • Allow the bubbles to scrub off your fingertips before beginning the catch phase of your stroke. This will maximize the use of your streamline.
    • Commence the catch only when the recovering hand has passed your head and is in line with the elbow of the lead hand. This enables proper catch & rotation timing.
    • Anchor your hand and forearm in the water, and then drive yourself past the anchor, using your hips. Think of trying to gather a pile of marbles. You want to apply sufficient pressure to gather the marbles (aka the water) toward you, but not so much that the marbles slip away.
    • Let hip rotation create the power –  not the strength of your shoulders and arms

Hope you find these insights helpful!

Coach Peter

 

2019 Open Sky Training camp calendar

Prepare for your A race with a multi-day triathlon training camp experience.

ost-logoOpen Sky Training camps offer extensive coach contact, 12-56 mile open road rides with specific workout prescriptions aimed at race events, small group swim skills development at Bard College pool, open water lake swims, and sport specific clinics. Run & ride beautiful vistas, combine routes to go any distance, and enjoy delicious food in the company of fellow athletes.

The camp fee includes accommodation, coaching, and all meals (the food is outstanding). A 10% discount is available to Startline Coaching athletes on any camp date.

2019 camp schedule:

  • May 10-12 – Led by Startline Coaching – Coach Peter
  • June 7-9
  • June 22-23 – Led by Startline Coaching – Coach Peter
  • August 9-11

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Become Strong like Bull

Strong Like Bull

Strong Like Bull is a 9 day long bicycle/triathlon training camp in the mountains of Spain modeled in the style of professional European pro team spring training camps.

The trip brings together athletes to explore the quiet and mountainous regions of south central Spain. The Spanish sun and challenging mountainous terrain will reawaken, strengthen and warm you. The unbelievable riding, amazing scenery, great food, and great people will be an experience you won’t easily forget. With much better weather than February and March in the states, and a dedicated 7 days to training, you’re sure to get stronger and faster and have fun in the process.

There are 2 camps of 9 days each:

  • Camp 1: Friday 2/22/2019 – Saturday 3/2/2019 (**Plan to fly from USA 2/21/19**)
  • Camp 2: Saturday 3/2/2019 – Sunday 3/10/2019 (**Plan to fly from USA 3/1/19**)

On staff are a masseuse, nutritionist, 2 coaches, driver and bike mechanic. The camp features daily yoga, 3-6 hour training rides in the mountains with follow car, athlete friendly nutritionist designed meals, all conducted within the context of a stunningly beautiful and culturally unique setting.

New this year! Head Coach Peter Helling from Startline coaching will be joining the Strong like Bull team from 3/2/2019 to 3/10/2019 for Camp #2.

To register go to: https://www.bikereg.com/slb2019

Excellent preparation for the Ironman.

Get your bike on!

Coach Peter.

USA Cycling Certified Skills Instructor certification

SLC_logo+name_webSept 10 2018 – Startline coaching is pleased to announce that Head Coach Peter Helling is now accredited as a USAC certified skills instructor, joining approximately 50 other coaches nationally who hold this certification.

Bicycle handling skills are an essential foundation for all recreational and competitive cyclists & triathletes. Often neglected in preference for physiological development, handling skills provide tools to allows riders to ride safely, enjoy the thrill and camaraderie of riding in groups, progress rapidly as racers, and improve overall race performance.

USAC certified skills instructor certification is targeted specifically toward preparing cyclists to group ride and race: focusing on contact, position, communication, collaboration, predictability, and riding assertively to protect the riders front wheel in increasing complex and crowded riding situations.

The certification is based upon the USAC Beginning Racer Program aimed at preparing first time racers. This program enables racers to move quickly from entry level categories to higher level categories.

PrintThis new certification adds to Coach Peter’s existing accreditation as a USAC Level 2 cycling coach w/ distinction and USAT Level 2 triathlon endurance coach. USCycling_Coach

Located in Brooklyn NY, Startline coaching offers group & individual training programs for triathletes, runners, and cyclists.

Please contact Coach Peter if you are interested in a coaching program or club cycling clinics to develop solo and group bike handling skills. Boost your performance as a cyclist or multi-sport athlete.

 

2018 Open Sky Training camp calendar

Prepare for your A race with a multi-day training camp experience.

ost-logoOpen Sky Training camps offer extensive coach contact, 12-56 mile open road rides with specific workout prescriptions aimed at race events, small group swim skills development at Bard College pool, open water lake swims, and sport specific clinics. Run & ride beautiful vistas, combine routes to go any distance, and enjoy delicious food in the company of fellow athletes.

2018 Camp schedule:

  • May 18-20 – Led by Startline Coaching – Coach Peter
  • June 8-10 – Led by Startline Coaching – Coach Peter
  • June 22-24
  • August 3-5

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The camp is fully catered (the food is outstanding) and includes accommodations while spots in the house last

USAT Level II Endurance coaching clinic rocks!

Such a great clinic! Special thanks to Linda Cleveland, M.S. USAT Coach Development Senior Manager and the clinic presenters:

  • Jesse Kropelnicki, MS – USAT Level III, ACSM CpT,  NSCA CSCS
  • Ian Murray – USAT Level III, ITU & USAC Level II, Bike Fit Instructor: Cannondale’s Guru Academy & Dan Empfield’s Fit Institute Slowtwitch,  USAC Certified Race Mechanic
  • Karen Allen Turner, USAT L2 Coach, 2016 Team USA Coach

The following sessions really resonated with me:

  • Periodization for Long Course
  • Workout Design and Application for Long Course
  • Advanced Nutrition for Long Course
  • Strength Training for Long Course
  • Video Analysis and Application for Long Course
  • Advanced Running for Long Course
  • Psychological Assessment and Application

As a final task, each of us were asked to present an athlete training plan based upon an assigned scenario. Each scenario presented a unique and challenging athlete situation. Topics covered a wide spectrum:

  • Kona qualification
  • Disordered eating
  • Pro performance
  • New Iron distance athletes
  • Iron distance recovery
  • Limited training time
  • Critical training volume
  • Unrealistic expectations
  • Mental skills
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2017 USAT Level 2 Endurance clinic coaches (Kona, HI)

The final presentations by all the attending coaches showed how detailed and specific our approaches have become.

Each coach presentation brought out innovative problem solving strategies for a diverse range of coaching challenges.

The presentations were the highlight of the week.

Key insights from the clinic:

  1. Critical Training Volume – What it takes to resist breakdown of performance during racing & key metrics to strive for in athletic development.
  2. Nutrition approaches for the athlete to optimize body composition, training adaptation, and race fueling
  3. Triathlon specific strength development to resist injury and improve form

As is always the case when attending formal accreditation classes, I walked away a stronger coach with new ideas and approaches that will strengthen the Startline coaching squad in 2018.

2017 off season group training here we go. Prepare for a great 2018 race season.

2017 training camps – preview announcement

ost-logoWhile the training camp dates are not officially announced, Start Line Coaching will be coaching 2.5 day triathlon training camps in partnership with open sky training in 2017.

Located in the beautiful Hudson Valley, prepare for your A race with a 2.5 day program tuned to your race goals and experience.

Dates: May 19-21, 2017 & June 23-25, 2017. Mark your calendar.

Training camps include a swim instruction clinic, open water practice, heart rate & event specific pacing discussions, multiple opportunities for long distance biking & running over rigorous terrain, and coach guidance on technique and strategy in all disciplines.USAT10SanctionedEvents

The camp is fully catered (the food is outstanding) and includes accommodations while spots in the house last.

Watch www.openskytraining.com, follow this blog, or follow me on Twitter @startlinecoach for more updates on when registration opens.