The Joy of the Outdoors

I love the outdoors, so I trail run, sea swim and mountainbike.  Most of all, I love to run trails.  I like hills and gnarly back-county – with the big ups, the challenging downhills and the amazing views.  I love exploring new places and the feeling of freedom and adventure, but mostly, being in the outdoors reminds me that I’m alive.

I’m running my first ultramarathon in 4 weeks.  To add to the challenge, I’m running Kepler which is a 60km mountain race. The race is about 30km of climb and descent (including an 8km of continual uphill grunt to 1400m – that will be tough), and the rest undulating.  My race day pack weighs about 7kg, as I’ll be carrying water, food, and technical clothing.  My body likes food every 30 mins and water every 15, and likes a mix of cheese sandwiches, cashews and pouches of baby food.  I reckon it will take me about 10 hours (that’s 18 items of food!) and it’s going to be tough.  But Kepler’s on my bucket list so why not give it a go?

Before you think I’m a superfit experienced endurance athlete, I ran my first off-road marathon last year as my 50th birthday present.  I’ve never run a mountain race.  Last year I learnt to mountain bike and sea swim.  I met Ray about 2 years ago after recovering from a major health trauma.  My bucket list was born while lying in HDU (amazed to be alive) and Ray has given me the confidence and fitness to try things I never thought I could.  Running trails makes my heart sing and everyday I’m reminded that I’m alive!
Heather Collins

800 Ways to Enhance Your Endurance

Tri Training NZThis is the seventh session as we build your fitness to a new 1,500m PB. Start with the first session and then work through doing each session three to four days apart.

This session will provide a lower intensity session prior to the last session in this series.

Session Seven: Stamina

  • 200m Warm Up;
  • 2x 800m, 60sec RI
  • 200m Cool Down;

Start the workout with a Warm Up covering 200m. During the warm up feel free to stop and stretch as needed.  It doesn’t need to be a continuous swim.

The main set is made up of two 800m repetitions with a 60 second Rest Interval between them. Try and swim the second 800m at the same pace as the first, which is extremely challenging but with 15 seconds is pretty realistic and achievable.

Complete your workout with a 200m Cool Down. Feel free to pause and stretch when needed and/or include stretching as part of each break until the distance is covered.

As you swim record your time for each 800m rep and post them to the comments section below.

If you would like further advice feel free to contact Coach Ray.

Coach Ray is the Head Coach & Director of Qwik Kiwi – Endurance Sports Consultant.

Coach Ray specialises in assisting first timers and recreational athletes to achieve their sporting goals. He can be contacted at www.qwik.kiwiray@qwikkiwi.com and 021 348 729. Make sure you sign up to his monthly informative newsletter.

Test Yourself with a set of 15x 100m

Tri Training NZ
Female swimmer underwater — Image by © Ocean/Corbis

This is the sixth session as we build your fitness to a new 1,500m PB. Start with the first session and then work through doing each session three to four days apart.

This session will build on the threshold work you did in Session Three with a shorter interval, however because it is shorter you can do them at a higher pace.

Session Six: Threshold

  • 400m Warm Up;
  • 15x 100m 20sec RI;
  • 100m Cool Down;

Start the workout with a Warm Up covering 400m. During the warm up feel free to stop and stretch as needed.  It doesn’t need to be a continuous swim.

The main set is fifteen reps of 100m with 20 seconds Rest Interval (RI). Swim each rep as quick as you can.

Complete your workout with a 100m Cool Down. Feel free to pause and stretch when needed and/or include stretching as part of each break until the distance is covered.

Record your times for your 100’s and post them in the comments section below.

If you would like further advice feel free to contact Coach Ray.

Coach Ray is the Head Coach & Director of Qwik Kiwi – Endurance Sports Consultant.

Coach Ray specialises in assisting first timers and recreational athletes to achieve their sporting goals. He can be contacted at www.qwik.kiwiray@qwikkiwi.com and 021 348 729. Make sure you sign up to his monthly informative newsletter.

Enhance Your Technique with This Drill Sequence

Tri Training NZThis is the fifth session as we build your fitness to a new 1,500m PB. Start with the first session and then work through doing each session three to four days apart.

This session will continue the work you did in Session Two and continue to enhance and develop your technique.

Session Five: Technique

  • 400m Warm Up;
  • 4x 100m KOS 10sec RI;
  • 100m Easy;
  • 4x 100m (first two 6/1/6, next two 6/3/6) 10sec RI;
  • 100m Easy;
  • 4x 100m Alt Popov & Broken Arrow, 10sec RI;
  • 200m Cool Down;

Start the workout with a Warm Up covering 400m. During the warm up feel free to stop and stretch as needed.  It doesn’t need to be a continuous swim.

The next set is four reps of 100m doing the Kick on Side (KOS) drill with 10 seconds Rest Interval (RI) between repetitions. KOS is a great drill for enhancing your body rotation and is also great for enhancing both your posture and your alignment in the water. Here is a video of how to do this drill. This drill along with the other drills are most effectively done whilst wearing fins, so feel free to wear them during this part of the workout. Alternate doing them on one side then on the other, changing round each rep (i.e. odd numbered reps do them on your left and even numbered reps on your right side).

After the set of KOS, swim 100m nice and easy, without your fins. Focus on your body rotation and being nice and long through the water.

The next set is a set of four reps of 100m doing two reps of the 6/1/6 drill and then two reps of 6/3/6 drill (click on the name of the drill to see how to do them) with 10 seconds rest between repetitions. As with the previous drills, feel free to utilise your fins for this set. 6/1/6 and 6/3/6 are great drills that follow on nicely from KOS and incorporate the stroke and recovery into the drill.

After the set of 6/1/6 & 6/3/6, swim 100m nice and easy, without your fins. Focus on your body rotation, being nice and long through the water and getting a good catch with each stroke. Make sure you take your fins off when doing these easy sets.

The final set involves four reps of 100m alternating between Popov drill and the Broken Arrow drill (click on the name of the drill to see how to do them) with 10 seconds RI. As with the previous drills, utilising your fins will aid with a bit of momentum allowing you to focus on doing the drill correctly. Alternate doing them on one side then on the other, changing round each rep (i.e. odd numbered reps do Popov drill and even numbered reps do Broken Arrow).

Complete your workout with a 200m Cool Down. Feel free to pause and stretch when needed and/or include stretching as part of each break until the distance is covered.

If you would like further advice feel free to contact Coach Ray.

Coach Ray is the Head Coach & Director of Qwik Kiwi – Endurance Sports Consultant.

Coach Ray specialises in assisting first timers and recreational athletes to achieve their sporting goals. He can be contacted at www.qwik.kiwiray@qwikkiwi.com and 021 348 729. Make sure you sign up to his monthly informative newsletter.

Swim 300m Reps to Develop Your Stamina

Tri Training NZThis is the fourth session as we build your fitness to a new 1,500m PB. Start with the first session and then work through the second session and then the third session three to four days apart, prior to doing this session, before continuing on with the session that will be sent through to you in a few days time.

This session will help you develop your endurance and stamina whilst swimming.

Session Four: Endurance

  • 400m Warm Up;
  • 8x 25m Drills;
  • 4x 300m Build 1-4, 45sec RI;
  • 200m Cool Down;

Start the workout with a Warm Up covering 400m. During the warm up feel free to stop and stretch as needed.  It doesn’t need to be a continuous swim.

Swim 25m doing an appropriate drill. Pause prior to conducting the next repetition for a total of eight repetitions. Do the drills in the following order (examples of how to do each drill can be found by clicking on them).

  1. Kick On Side (KOS)
  2. Kick On Side (KOS)
  3. 6/1/6
  4. 6/3/6
  5. Kick On Side (KOS)
  6. Kick On Side (KOS)
  7. Broken Arrow
  8. Popov

The pause referred to above is a stop of about 10 seconds. It’s a chance to grab a drink, review the programme and think about the next drill you will do. If you need 15-20 seconds or longer, you are welcome to take it because the rest duration isn’t physiologically critical to the aim of this set. Having a quick break is neurologically critical though, so make sure you don’t just roll straight from one rep to the next.

The main set is made up of four repetitions of 300m with 45 seconds Rest Interval (RI).  As with the third session build your pace as you do each repetition, getting faster as you get closer to the end of the session. Start off with a steady rep, then a fast rep, faster rep before finishing with your fastest rep.

Complete your workout with a 200m Cool Down. Feel free to pause and stretch when needed and/or include stretching as part of each break until the distance is covered.

Record your times for each 300m rep and post them below.

If you would like further advice feel free to contact Coach Ray.

Coach Ray is the Head Coach & Director of Qwik Kiwi – Endurance Sports Consultant.

Coach Ray specialises in assisting first timers and recreational athletes to achieve their sporting goals. He can be contacted at www.qwik.kiwi, ray@qwikkiwi.com and 021 348 729. Make sure you sign up to his monthly informative newsletter.

200’s to Enhance Your Threshold Speed

http://www.unco.edu/campusrec/aquatics/services.html

This is the third session as we build your fitness to a new 1,500m PB. Start with the first session and then work through the next session after three to four days prior to doing this session, before continuing on with the session that will be sent through to you in a few days time.

This session will help you develop your threshold speed whilst swimming. Threshold speed is the speed you can maintain for a reasonable amount of time. We do that by working hard then having a shortish Rest Interval (RI) that allows some recovery, but not complete recovery from the effort.

Session Three: 200’s

  • 200m Warm Up;
  • 8x 200m Build 1-4, 30sec RI;
  • 200m Cool Down;

Start the workout with a Warm Up covering 200m. During the warm up feel free to stop and stretch as needed.  It doesn’t need to be a continuous swim.

The main set involves swimming eight reps of 200m. After each rep have a 30 second Rest Interval (RI). Either use your wrist watch or the BIG pace clock at the pool to keep this rest interval to 30 seconds precisely. If you rest too long, you won’t get the physiological benefit of this session. With each rep I want you to build your pace to get quicker over four repetitions. Then your fifth rep can be a little slower as you start to build your pace over the next four reps. You could say your first rep is steady, your second rep is fast, your third rep is faster and your fourth rep is fastest.  Then repeat it all for the fifth to eighth reps. Your times may look like this:

Rep Time
1st 4:12 Build 1-4 Steady
2nd 4:02 Fast
3rd 3:58 Faster
4th 3:55 Fastest
5th 4:15 Build the next 1-4 Steady
6th 4:03 Fast
7th 3:59 Faster
8th 3:56 Fastest

Complete your workout with a 200m Cool Down. Feel free to pause and stretch when needed and/or include stretching as part of each break until the distance is covered.

Record your times for each 200m rep and post your times below.

If you would like further advice feel free to contact Coach Ray.

Coach Ray is the Head Coach & Director of Qwik Kiwi – Endurance Sports Consultant.

Coach Ray specialises in assisting first timers and recreational athletes to achieve their sporting goals. He can be contacted at www.qwik.kiwi, ray@qwikkiwi.com and 021 348 729. Make sure you sign up to his monthly informative newsletter.