So I raced the Palm Springs Tri last weekend.  I finished fourth overall.  I got off of the bike in 7th or 8th and ran my way back up to 4th.  I ran out of room.  It was only a six mile run, on some rally crappy surfaces.  I averged 5:14/mile.  I ran the 6 miles in around 31 minutes.  The next closest run split was around 32:30.  I am so strong on the run right now.  I came off the bike not knowing how my legs would feel.  I have not been doing that many bricks, so when I put on my shoes and took off, it was a mystery as to how I would feel.  It took about a half of a mile but I found my grove and pounded out a few solid miles.  So what do I need to work on?

Obviously, swimming.  I have been doing 1:10/100yd in the pool so I know I am gaining speed, but what I need to really hone in on is getting out of the blocks FAST and getting on the feet of a swimmer that is faster than me.  I am good at drafting, but I need to be better at drafting off of faster swimmers.  I remember speaking to Chris Lieto after Buffalo Springs last year.  He said he had to dig really deep at the start of the swim in order to get on Terenzo’s feet.  I need to learn to dig that hard at the start.  I have been open water swim training with Conejo Valley Multisport Masters on Wednesday mornings.  We take the lane lines out and swim the perimeter of a 50 meter pool.  This is 150 meters nonstop, and if you keep doing it, it leads to endless swimming.  So this is really helping me.  Everyone is welcome and the more the merrier.  We need to to get a big group to make it a race- like atmosphere.

Bike pacing is also very important.  I held an averge of 325 watts for the bike segment.  This is a good number, but there were way too many spikes in power.  I can get away with this on and olympic distance course, but anything longer, I will suffer.  I was spiking to over 700 watts.  This kills my legs and too many of these would lead to a horrible run.  Especially at a half or full IM.  I know, because I have suffered from this many times in the past.  If I remain more consistent in my power, this will leave me freasher to use my run as the weapon it is.

Lastly, I need to improve my power to weight ratio.  As I said, I averaged 325 watts.  Philippe, my friend and fellow pro, had the fastest bike split and he averaged 305 watts.  Philippe only weighs 165lbs where as I weigh a hulking 191lbs.  This means he was pushing 4.1 watts/kg and I was pushing 3.9 watts/kilogram.  I don’t want to lose too much weight because my power will suffer, I would rather work on losing only a few pounds and really concentrating on increasing my threshhold power through VO2 max training, threshhold intervals, and strength training at ProactiveSP.  Make sense?

As I always say, make sure you take something away from each and every race.  I would like to start this habit of making sure I learn at least three things from every race I compete in and document those things.  I think every serious athelete should do this.  No one is perfect and we all learn from our previous experiences.  If we have something that we can look back on and remind us of what we need to do, it makes it all that much more evident as to what needs to be done.  RACE HARD!



  1. Good write up and race re-cap! How is your power meter setup w/ your race wheels? Good to have that power data.

    I was actually really cold on the swim and the first part of the bike. I like what you said about learning something from each race. Even after many years, I have to have a plan for how to ensure that I can stay as warm as possible.

    Have you heard of a book called Racing Weight? It is really good for nutrition and body type for endurance sports.

    Thanks Jim for the post.


    • I have a Quark so it is set up like an SRM in the cranks of my tri bike. Nothing on the wheels

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