Tag: Off Season (page 1 of 2)

Stocking Stuffers for Triathletes

Who doesn’t love their stockings stuffed? That is… unless you call socks stockings, and then I really wouldn’t want anyone stuffing anything in my “stockings.”

Growing up, stocking stuffers were all about getting those things we kind of needed but not really. Usually it was a little candy (Reese’s of course) and then a little higher quality toiletries and accessories than we would normally buy for ourselves. It was always great because we got some of those things we- Luxuries if you will- that made life a litter easier.

In the spirit of my childhood stocking, here is what a triathlete would want in their stocking!


Seriously. I would get a year’s supply of chapstick every Christmas in my stocking. I don’t actually think I’ve ever bought any chapstick for myself. Your triathlete will love having chapstick for those winter rides in the cold, and then again for the blistering summer rides. This is an easy win!

Wireless Headphones

There’s always debate on whether to listen to music, or not listen to music when training. If your triathlete is the kind that listens to music (and even if they aren’t) wireless headphones are the way to go! You can get really nice ones like the ones from Jaybird, or you can go the budget route and get the ones constantly on the top headphones lists.

Running Socks

Socks are just one of those things that can make or break a run. They are almost as important as good running shoes. Save yourself (I mean, your triathlete) so headache (footache??)and get some Balega Socks. They are all good, but the ultralight quarters are my go to.

Sports Nutrition

This is highly individual, but if you know what your athlete likes, then get them what they use! Even some single servings thrown in a stocking are a nice touch. If you don’t know where to start, I suggest grabbing some Nuun hydration packs, Honey Stinger gels, and a whole pack of Waffles. I’m serious. These waffles are the best afternoon snack!


Yes. Real, unhealthy candy! Reese’s are my favorite. What? It’s the off season!

Toe Covers

One of those comforts that are not expensive at all but can make all the difference in the world! Here in the South winter is only cold enough for full shoe covers for a week. Most other places around the US call that fall or spring! Toe covers are great for those rides where a full shoe cover is not needed, but a little extra warmth would be appreciated. I suggest the Toe Thingy from Castelli.

Elastic Shoe Laces

Yes, the staple in triathlon transition zones everywhere. Save a few seconds in T2 with elastic laces and get elastic laces. It’s probably time for your triathlete to get new running shoes anyway, so get them a good pair of laces to go in them! I’ve been using RipLaces for over a year now and they are the best ones out there! You can individualize each loop to fit right and don’t have to deal with a single elastic band running through the whole shoe. These are the bomb!

Bar Tape

Freshen up your Triathlete’s bike with some new bar tape. A new roll of tape will make a world of difference. Remember when I said these are things we wouldn’t normally buy ourselves? Well triathletes are notorious for letting their bar tape wear down to nothing. At least that’s what my bike shop told me.


This is really more for you than for your triathlete. Peace of mind. Get them a RoadID and tell them about the RoadID app. Safety First!

Smartphone friendly gloves

Nothing is more annoying than having to take your had out of your glove to use a touch screen (be it a phone or bike computer). Smartphone friendly gloves are the bomb!

There you have it! 10 easy things to stuff the stockings and make your triathlete smile! What things would you add to the list?

If you are shopping online for these things (like I do!) then I’d appreciate you using my Amazon link! It’s free to you and I get a little kick back to help keep this site rolling.

Skip the Run this Off Season… Focus on the swim!

Everywhere you look, leaves are changing, pumpkins are out, and it’s getting colder, and everyone is gearing up for a Turkey Trot!

That’s right, it’s off season. Most Triathlete’s change gears, take some time off, and focus on bringing their run form around with an off-season 5k, half or full marathon. Don’t believe me? Take a gander at Triathlete’s or TrainingPeak’s website and see how many different articles you can find on the off-season run?

May I suggest a different course of action?

Focus on the swim!

Yes, it’s the shortest of the 3 disciplines. Yes, most triathletes suffer through their swim sessions because they have to. But, here are 4 good reasons to focus on the swim in the off-season. Continue reading

Post Season Break- Won’t I loose Fitness?

Ahh… Off Season! There are so many different emotions that come to mind when you talk to a triathlete (or his family) about off season. First is relief! A hard, successful (hopefully) season is behind you. Time to focus on the holidays, put on a few pounds, and spend a little extra time with the family!

But so many athletes balk at the idea of taking a post season break! “Won’t I loose fitness?” They ask. Well… Continue reading

4 Thoughts On Season Planning

You may have noticed things have been quiet around here over the last month. I would say that was intentional… but that would kinda be lying a bit. The month of July has been crazy for me, and that’s normal for my job (I’m a Youth Pastor… summer means we throw the schedule in the trash as soon as we make it and pack in as much as we can while school is out!) This past month we’ve had a Community Outreach Week, a trip to an amusement park, a week-long trip to Atlanta, GA (Go Braves!!) and various other things thrown in like planning for the start of the school year,  family coming to town, and even church softball.

With all that craziness, my triathlon focus went out the door. I was able to keep up my bike rides for the most part. Runs were cut short, and swimming… well… I only swam 3 times in the month of July.

That put me down the path of thinking about season planning. We all know when our busy time of year is. If you’re in retail, Black Friday to New Years is your time. If you are in Education, the start and end of the school year are your time. I’m not going to go through them all, but you know what your time is. Since you know it, you should also take a look at your triathlon (or individual sport) season and plan accordingly. Here are 4 ways you can help ease that tension between life and triathlon life by planning ahead. Continue reading

Pre-Season Pedal Stroke Drills

Pre-Season is a fun time of year for training. It is the time that we all get to re-focus after a nice break from training. We are all planning our seasons, picking races, and getting back our fitness.

One important part of the pre-season is build form (also called: Speed skills, technique, etc.). Everyone know that technique is important in the pool. Most of us know foot strike is important for running. Only a small percent of us even give any thought to our pedal stroke.


Continue reading

What’s a KiloJoule

Following on the heels of the post “What’s a Watt?” I wanted to jump off that and get a little more info out there on one of the things you can do with a power meter. A lot of people, (especially in the off season) focus on losing weight and getting a better body composition. To accurately count calories, you need an accurate count of calories burned. Any GPS will give you a number of calories burned for a given workout, but sometimes that is a bit of an arbitrary number. This is where a power meter comes into play!

Continue reading

Reverse vs. Traditional Periodization: My Take

It’s that time of year… yes… Christmas, but also planning time for next season. You’re picking races and starting to plan your training. I’ve noticed a bit of hustle and bustle around the interwebs about one topic surrounding annual training plans… reverse periodization vs. traditional periodization. I wanted to give you my take on the subject.

Continue reading

Time to Refocus… Off Season

The 2016 season definitely ended on a better note than 2015. I love racing, so getting in a few good races to cap off the season is great. Even if they are more for the fun of it than for competition. But isn’t that why we do this anyway? Fun is what it’s all about. And like I learned playing High School baseball, winning is more fun that losing! Finishing with two podiums qualifies 🙂


A little off season R&R

But now it’s the off season. I’ve been relaxing and raiding the ice cream freezer at the office. It’s great! But the off season is more than just loosening the belt a little. It’s time to refocus. Here’s what I’m focusing on this off season. Continue reading



One of the exciting things about looking forward to this triathlon season is the fact that this is my first season with a sponsor! No, I am not a professional, and no, I do not have people giving thousands of dollars in free stuff, but this year, I get to be part of the Trisports.com Champions team!

I have been using Trisports.com for the last few seasons for my equiptment needs. They have really made it so that I only go to my Local Bike Shop for maintenance and labor, but all the parts I get from Trisports. I even have sent my wife there for Birthday Gifts! They are a great company to do business with, and I am excited to be a part of the Trisports team this year!

One thing I love about their website is that they have divided their products by sport, so even if you are a one sport athlete, it is easy to find items related to your one sport without having to wade through all of the triathlon specific equipment. So even if you are just a runner, cyclist, or swimmer, then you can still find what you need at Trisports.  

If you want to read more about the company you can see their about page HERE

As a member of the Trisports team, I get to hand out coupons to refer people to site. These coupons are for 20% you order! Just comment or send me a message and I’ll send you a one-time use code! Do keep in mind that these codes cannot be used in conjunction with any other offers, on items designated as non-discountable, and do not apply to taxes or shipping. If you are getting something on sale and cannot use a discount code, please click through to the sight from this link HERE or on my sponsors page. While I DO NOT get a kick back from the items you purchase, I do earn rewards for referrals, so I would deeply appreciate your support this way!


Another partnership I have this year is with The Feed. The Feed is a company built to make it as easy as possible for athletes to get the nutrition products they use. They operate mainly on a subscription basis, so you can set it and forget it and your bars and hydration mixes will show up on your doorstep at whatever interval you choose. They also accept on-off orders so you can give them a try and test out new products as your leasure. One great thing they have is pre-built boxes so you can pick your sport or favorite team/athlete and get a box of products delivered to your door to try out!

You can check out the feed here, and for full disclosure, I get a 10% kick back through their affiliate program, so I would appreciate your support of this blog and my athletic endeavors! Also, Get $10 Worth Of Food For Free With Your First Order of $25 or More! Coupon Code: freebonuskit 

Guru Bike Fit

One of the great things to do in the off season is get a bike fit. That’s what I was able to do back in November when Podium Multisport- North Carolina ran a special on their Guru Bike Fits.

I contacted Mike there at Podium to set up an appointment in the middle of the day. The whole process was very easy and they were very flexible with my schedule since I had a bit of a drive to get to them. Once I got there they grabbed the measurements from my IMG_20151119_140822536current bike set-up and then they input them into the guru fit system. For those not familiar with the system, there is a computer and ipad system that connects to a special fit bike. This fit bike has motors that the fitter can control to change the various aspects of your position while you are on the bike pedaling. The bike also is equipped with a power meter that measures power and cadence so that you and your fitter can see how different positions affect your power output.

Mike started by taking a look at my cleat position on my shoes. This was huge for me because that is the only ear I had really been having problems. He checked my flexibility and knee alignment and did some others things I’m not really sure about in measuring my feet. Then he adjusted my cleats and got them on like they should.

Once they set the fit bike to my current position, I got on a did a little warm up. At this point Mike started to find my limits on each position. He raised the saddle to the highest point possible so that I could barely reach the pedals. Once we found that point, he brought it back about halfway back down. Next, he did the same with the aerobars, moving them as far out as I could stand. Both of these points felt very weird, but it would good to have a reference to start with.

Once we brought both back to a happy medium, he started with the saddle again adjusting up and down to find the most comfortable position, and then the same with moving it back and forth. When we settled on a nice position with the saddle, he did the same with the aerobars, up and down, back and forth. We settled on a position and saved that into the computer. We did this three more times to get a few different positions to compare with differences between drop from saddle to bars etc.

With four positions to choose from, we went through them one by one to compare them back to back. It was obvious from those comparisons that the first one was NOT the best for me, and in comparing them we settled on the last two positions as the best ones. The only difference between them was 1mm drop in bar height. After feeling the differences a few times while pedaling, we decided on the higher bar positions because it would take some time to get use to anyway, and we could easily take a spacer out down the road if I decided I wanted a lower front end.

With that, Mike saved my positions and the computer spit out measurements for him to use to adjust my bike to this position. The computer also spit out various options for new bikes, sizes, and adjustments needed to make them fit me. I didn’t need this, but it was nice to see I can fit quite a wide range of bikes without too many adjustments.

The guys took my bike and got it all set up for me while I cooled down and changed clothes. Overall I’m very happy with the process. I can feel the difference in the bike and am getting settled into the new position. As part of that, there are a bit of “growing pains” with that new position. I’ve emailed with Mike about some things and I’ll probably go in for them to take another look at my position. Right now I think I started to sit a little different on a new ISM saddle I had them put on and that is affecting my position just slightly enough to feel it in the knees. I’ll update this when we get it figured out.

I can now say that I think everyone needs a bike fit! I had gone 3 seasons without once and messed with my cleat about once every couple months trying to get it right. One trip to a fit and everything is wonderful! Even just that one change would be worth it in my opinion. So a big thanks to Mike and the guys a Podium!

Older posts

© 2017 Triathlonpal

Theme by Anders NorenUp ↑