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  • Writer's pictureRamsey Bergeron

Malibu International Triathlon

The 2015 Malibu race. The one that almost didn’t happen.

I signed up for this race months ago but found out shortly thereafter that I was going to be going to Mr Olympia in Vegas with EAS the same weekend, so I shifted my tri training to more gym time. Until 5 weeks ago when I got the call that the travel budget was cut so Vegas was out. Yeah. Oook well, it’s a beautiful course so ready or not, I was excited to get back out for an ocean swim. I’m signed up for Ironman Cairns next summer, so I figured this would be good to refamiliarize myself with the salt water and a ride a similar albeit a shorter course.

So, how did I train for this one?

Well, not as I have traditionally in the past. I didn’t decrease my gym time at all. If anything, I actually increased my leg days.

I also started taking Pilates which I find helps me tremendously on the bike, and I started taking spin class once a week. It’s still been hotter than the sun in Scottsdale the past month, so my outdoor time was minimal.

And I bought a new pair of Hoka’s to run in after having them recommended to me by Dave Scott (when the man gives you tri advice, you listen) but only went on 2 runs. I had a backwoods hiking debocle a few weeks ago which left chunks of skin missing from my Achilles which rendered biking and running impossible.

I did incorporate a new supplement to my gym workouts and my spin classes that really made a difference in the quality of the training I was doing. The new Myoplex BCAA + Electrolyte powder.

I had researched BCAAs before and figured it was time I gave it a shot. As an EAS spokesperson, I was lucky enough to get my hands on it early (yay!) and wow! Much less muscle fatigue and increased my gains when sipping it during a workout. It hits shelves this November so make sure you grab some!

So Friday my wife and I drove the 6 hours out here to Malibu. About halfway I realized I forgot my suitcase (I blame my dogs) but had my bike, transition bag, and all my race gear so I would be doing some clothes shopping after the race.

Nutrition was good day before, fish and salad and some coconut milk. I’ve shifted to a primarily ketogenic diet and it works well for me. Race morning I did have half a bagel with peanut butter. (That’s all the carb loading I do these days. ) Got down to the beach and started the race!

Swim: Started off ok! Felt great actually! Then the cannon went off and I sprinted to the water. I usually love the swim. Then I get in and remember “oh yeah, the first 100 meters always sucks.” My dolphin dives under the waves were the most effective they’ve ever been which was motivating. Then you get around the other swimmers past the breakers. Not only are you getting pummeled by other swimmers, but this time when you accidentally swallow mouthfuls of water, it’s salty. And that’s very very bad. I could taste the water even coming in my nose and started making an effort to breathe out more forcefully. Once I got to the turn buoy, I was fine. Sighting went well and held my line pretty well. LAST YEAR: 33:11 THIS YEAR: 27:35

Bike: other than spin, I haven’t spent a lot of time on a bike the last month so I was pleasantly surprised, especially since I’m currently 8 lbs heavier than this race last year due to more time in the gym. Maintained an average speed of around 21 mph. I used my Myoplex BCAA + electrolyte powder in my water which helped keep the legs fresh and kept me from bonking in the heat. On the Specialized Shiv Rival, I got some crazy speed on the downhills, but the uphill a on the tribike wasn’t pretty. But what was pretty? Riding down the PCH through Malibu! Unbelievable views! LAST YEAR: 1:14:18 THIS YEAR: 1:12:22

Run: feet felt heavy right off the bat in the new Hokas. But man, it’s like running on a cloud. So much easier on the knees and back. When my form starts to slip and I heel strike, no pain at all. I grabbed a few gels at the first mile aid station, powered one down immediately and carried the other with me. Having a ketogenic diet, the sugar definitely hit me much stronger than it has in the past. Alternated a run with very few walk breaks to go through aid stations, dump water on my head since it was a scorcher, and tried to stretch out the knot in my back from heavier shoes. Even though the shoes did weigh more, I was able to run faster because it didn’t hurt to! The lesson from the run though is that I have to, well, run more! Training definitely needs to be ramped up. LAST YEAR: 1:06:07 THIS YEAR: 1:02:40

So total with shaving about a minute off both T1 and T2, I came in around 12 minutes faster than last year, which considering how prepared I was, is amazing. I’ll definitely be using my BCAA’s and new Hokas while training formula next A race; Ironman Cairns, June 12, 2016. #bergerontraining

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