Ironman Triathlon Strength Coach San Antonio

The Four Seasons of a Triathlete

(I have been wanting to write this blog for quite some time. Until recently, I didn’t realize how much it has pertained to my life.)

Physically… athletes have different seasons, good and bad seasons. Athletes race well, qualified for Ironman-Hawaii or placed on the USA Triathlon Triathlon team or they didn’t race well at all, got injured, or over trained.

Mentally… athletes also have different seasons.

Beginner Season:

  • Finish LineBeginner athlete, who has done a few triathlons.
  • This typically last  2-3 years or seasons.
  • They sign up for their 1st race and they are so so happy.
  • They may train, they may over train or they may not train at all.
  • They cross that finish line and they are the happiest they have ever been.
  • All they did was smile on the course, say  Hi to the volunteers, slapped the kids hands, who are cheering on their parents, rode a mountain bike, took the time to sit down and wipe their feet off from the water to put on their socks in T1.
  • They told the world, Facebook, Twitter, the person in the grocery store, the person in line at the grocery store, etc. .
  • They get home, GORGE food and  took a 3 hour nap.
  • A great season to be in…you are in a Happy Place in your Triathlon World.

Intermediate Season:

  • Intermediate athlete, who has done 5-10 triathlons.
  • This typically last 3-5 years or seasons.
  • These athletes would like to improve their times with the same races that they did in the Beginner Season.
  • They actually train. Who knows….maybe they will get a coach.
  • They smiled in the beginning but started getting serious, say Hi to a couple of volunteers, keep looking at their watch, they get a new bike, they don’t wipe their feet down in T1.
  • They told the world still that they did the race but they justified why it wasn’t as good as last years or why it was better than last year. There is a reason why they did or didn’t do well.
  • Not a bad season to be in…but it is a season that you may have to be mindful of.

Advanced Season:

  • Advanced athlete, who has done 11-20 triathlons
  • This season typically last 6+ years.
  • These athletes would like to improve their times from before but plan on passing everyone else and would like to kick everyone butt.
  • They want to place either 1st in their age group or 1st overall.
  • They need to get hardware.
  • They train…they may even over train. Coach is there but these athletes really don’t listen since they know better.
  • They don’t smile, don’t say Hi, they cross the finish line because they are pissed off because they didn’t do as well as they wanted too.
  • They still told the world that they race but it wasn’t good enough. It never is.
  • Not a good season to be in at all…this is NOT a healthy season. You need to re-evaluate your goals, take a break or find a different sport.

Re-Born Athlete Season:

I jumped too early and my legs buckled underneath me!

I jumped too early and my legs buckled underneath me!

  • Re-Born athlete, who has done 21 + triathlons.
  • Took a sabbatical.
  • Remember the reasons WHY they do this sports.
  • A smile was on their face from beginning to the end.
  • Said Hi to everyone and thanked everyone for their time.
  • They weren’t mad or angry at their race or towards anyone.
  • They still tell everyone that they did a race.
  • They crossed the finish line with an extra skip in their step.
  • They cry because it feels good to be happy again.
  • They are in their Happy Spot….they love the sport…AGAIN.

So, what season are you in?

I have been racing triathlons since 1992. I have gone through every season. I was not a nice person in the advanced season. I was not in a healthy spot in my triathlon world.  I have to admit… it is good to be back. I think you know what season I am in!

Welcome Home Coach Jen!

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Triathlon Strength Coach

P&G Everyday Post

Triathlete Squats Ironman Triathlon

Check out my expertise in Squats!

Check out the “P&G Everyday” article that I was quoted in and how important squats are in every day life!!!


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Ironman Triathlon Strength Coach San Antonio

Strength Training for Triathletes Lingo

I coach a lot of triathletes, runners, cyclists and endurance athletes for their strength program.Strength Training Lingo for Endurance Athletes  I have done classes specifically designed for triathletes, cyclist and runners called, “The Strongest Mile,”  a strength and conditioning program designed for endurance athletes.

Let me give you a background of how “The Strongest Mile” came about.  In 2009, I started doing CrossFit. Drank the Kool-Aid and LOVE it. Needed break from the Ironman Triathlon world. In 2010, I received my CrossFit Level I and CrossFit Endurance certification. I coached CrossFit for over 3 years. In 2012, I received my Masters in Kinesiology with an emphasis in Exercise Science. In 2015, I will be receiving my NSCA – CSCS certification. Check out my blog that I wrote about “Triathlons and CrossFit.” My two LOVES!

Something that I realized for endurance athletes was that they were intimated by CrossFit. All these crazy lifts, gymnastic movements, flipping tires, and lifting heavy weight ALL THE TIME (not true, BTW). So, endurance athletes don’t want to go into a CrossFit gym and get “injured.” Right? What about the nagging hamstring, the Plantar Fascitis, pulled groin, etc. You can get injured in running, cycling, etc. You are an athlete. YOU NEED a STRENGTH PROGRAM :)

So, I started my own program, The Strongest Mile. My program is designed specifically for swimmers, cyclist, runners and triathletes. I don’t expect my runners to do a Muscle Up. I don’t expect my swimmers to do an Olympic lift called a snatch. And I don’t expect triathletes to do max box jumps.

What I do expect from endurance athletes?

  • To get under the bar
  • To do body weight exercises (pull ups, negative pull ups, push ups, sit ups, etc.)
  • To work on posterior chain (back side) of the body
  • To do a HIT workout that will ONLY last less than 12 minutes to get into the Phosphagen Energy System or the Anaerobic Energy System. (You don’t need to do a 30 minute HIT. You do that every day in the pool, on the road!)

A question from one of my athletes, who is completely new to strength training, didn’t know the terms or lingo that sometimes I will use in the workouts that I do for them.

Can you define some of the technical terms in strength training and lifting?

I put together a few terms, definition and lingo that I use but I have to give the props to CrossFit and other health and fitness experts. Why re-invent the wheel? These terms are terms that I will use in, “The Strongest Mile:”

Basic CrossFit and/or Fitness Lingo

WOD – Workout of the Day
AMRAP – As Many Rounds As Possible
EMOM– Every Minute on the Minute
RFT– Rounds for Time
RNFT – Rounds Not for Time

SQ – Squats
AS – Air Squats
BS – Back Squats
FS – Front Squats
OHS – Overhead Squats (Advanced)

DL- Deadlift
RDL – Romanian Deadlifts
WGDL – Wide-Grip Deadlifts (Advanced)
SDHP – Sumo Deadlift High Pull (Advanced)

STO- Shoulder to Over Head
SP – Strict Press
PP– Push Press
PJ – Push Jerk (Advanced)

Other Barbell Lifts or Movements

DU – Double Unders (Jump Rope)
KBS– Kettle Bell Swings
PC – Power Cleans (Advanced)
T2B or TTB – Toes to Bar
K2E or KTE – Knees to Elbow

Other Lingo that you may see:
BW– Body Weight
DNF – Did Not Finish
HIIT – High Intensity Interval Training
HIT – High Intensity Training
PR – Personal Record (HELLZ YEAH)
Rx’d– As prescribed
Rep – Repetition
RI – Rest Interval
RM– Repetition Maximum. Usually, I will ask for you 1 RM of squat/deadlift, etc.
Set – How many repetitions are you doing? 3 sets x 10 reps
Tabata – 8 total intervals: 20 seconds on/10 seconds off for 4:00 minutes
TSM – The Strongest Mile :)

So, there you have it. The terms and the lingo that I will use in “The Strongest Mile,” that CrossFit gyms will use, that other gyms may use (Gold Fit, LifeTime, etc.) I hope that will help you as you are heading into the gym for your strength program. If you don’t know, ask! That is what coaches are there to help you out. If you have been to the gym for over a year, then I will tell you to look it up!

So, here is a Word Problem for you. Put your answer in the comment and tell me what each BOLD acronym is:

“I would like you to find you 1 RM of your BS. After you do that and take a 5:00 RI, I want you do to 10:00 EMOM of 5 RDL’s and 30 DU’s. After your WOD, let me know if you did Rx’d or had to scale the DU’s. Now,  I want you to do 3 x 10 of TTB. “

Click HERE and sign up for Triathlon Training Tips for Endurance Athletes on Wednesday!

Click HERE and sign up for Strength Training Tips for Endurance Athletes on Fridays! Plus you get a free PDF!

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Ironman Triathlon Strength Coach

Real IronDAD PodCast

Ironman Triathlon Strength Coach

Click on the photo for the PodCast with Cory and myself. Great information about how to get ready for Ironman Training and Life!


Ironman Triathlon Strength Coach

Thanks for the Support Cory! Check out PodCast that Cory and I did. Stay tuned as Cory and I work together for 2016!


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Strength Training Triathlete

Strength Training for All Endurance Athletes!

The last few months, I have chatted about strength training for all athletes that I work with: swimmers, cyclists, runners and triathletes.
Sometimes blogs get lost in the shuffle. So, today, I  Ironman Triathlete Strength Training put together a blog with all the recent blogs that I put together for these athletes.

Click HERE and sign up for Triathlon Training Tips, every other Wednesday!

Click HERE and sign up for Strength Training Tips, every other Friday!


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