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Team Nagi Coaching Newsletter – May 2017

I’m so pleased to say it’s been a phenomenal month for Team Nagi racing. The results have been coming in thick and fast as some people kick off their season and others on the opposite side of the world are winding down theirs. As a coach it’s an exciting time because it’s when my athletes start to make that transition from training to racing. As I’ve written in many of my blogs this is an art form in itself because all the best training in the world doesn’t guarantee race day success. Far from it, there are a whole new myriad of new skills to be developed and refined as each athlete moves from race to race. These include pacing, nutrition, race tactics, bike handling skills, transition efficiency, heat acclimatisation, open water skills & familiarisation, the list goes on and on.

As daunting as all this may seem it’s one of the main reason we do this sport, athletes are constantly trying to put the elements of the perfect race together because as we know there is always something that can be improved. In surfing they would call it the search for ‘the perfect wave’, that one moment when all the stars align to give you that out of body experience. But as we know this rarely ever happens, I once asked triathlon legend Simon Lessing regarded by many as one of the greatest triathletes of all time how many perfect races he had in a glittering career that spanned 25 years, he said ” One, and it wasn’t that perfect either”.

Perhaps that was also the mentality of someone who rose to the absolute pinnacle of our sport but it also highlights the reason people become so addicted triathlon. It’s the pursuit of mastery over all 4 disciplines that is the biggest challenge of all that keeps pulling us back in time and time again. But most importantly it’s a sport that is healthy & fun, yet challenging, varied and demanding at the same time. There really is no other sport like it, it’s an intoxicating mix for many that keeps drawing you back in time and time again.

So my message this month is no matter what your goals or how competitive you are trying to be remember that having fun is an absolute priority. This is what you do to stay healthy and feel good about yourself so keep smiling when out there training and racing. Don’t try to be too perfect because perfection is unattainable, what you can aim for the is to be the best athlete you can be on race day based on the training and racing you have done so far. You can’t ask for more than that. Then if there are areas you can improve on next time use this as a positive driving force to take you onto success in your next race.

Think of it as the ultimate journey of self-realisation and self-discovery, you never know what might be around that corner.

One year on & still very much missed – Simon Whittock

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Last week sadly marked the passing of one of Team Nagi’s finest. Simon Whittock was a true Ironman that sadly lost his life to cancer. He was one of the finest human beings I have ever known, his bravery and courage is unsurpassed. It was such a privilege to have known him and coached him for so long.

I thought I would mark his passing by posting one of my favourite photo’s of him at the end of one of my swim squads. This is where Simon really was in his element (left) with his favourite swim sparring partner David Magyar. The photo pretty much sums him up, always smiling, always happy with that special kind glint in his eye. He had a magic dust like no other and was the ultimate Team Nagi athlete and team mate.

Always missed, never forgotten.

I know would have been so pleased and proud to see all of your race performances below.

Our love and thoughts go out to Nicola, Lucy & Anna.

Team Race News

Emily Loughnan (25-29) was on fire yet again in her last race of the Australian season at the Bussleton 70.3 in Perth. Emily posted 4 hrs 21mins (27min swim/bike: 2:24/ 1:26 run) placing her 1st in her category and 3rd female overall including the pro women. What made this performance so impressive is that there was no specific prep done for this race, just some low volume, easy light training to help her recover from Ironman New Zealand a few weeks before. Not bad effort for a bit of last minute fun eh Loughers?

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Tash Jackson (30-34 cat) stormed to back to back victories in her last two triathlon events winning her age category at Challenge Salou in Spain in 4hrs 26mins (35min swim/ 2:26 bike/ 1:24 run). The ‘Flash” also came 10th female overall including the pro women. A truly outstanding performance as this tough girl continues her rise. Her key training focus moving forwards will be to remember her passport when she arrives at Heathrow airport! Thank you Dad for saving the day.

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Andy Rogerson (30-34 cat) ticked off one of his dream triathlon goals qualifying to race at the Half Ironman World Championships in Chattanooga, USA later this year.  He grabbed his slot firmly with two hands at the St Polten 70.3 in Austria posting 4hrs 44mins (swim 32:31/ bike  2:35/ run 1:29).  A deserved slot form an extremely hard working athlete who is only just starting to discover what he might be capable of, huge congratulations Andy.

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Robert Drake (30-34 cat) continued to show his potential at The Outlaw Half Ironman posting a blistering 4:17:15 (swim 29:19  / bike 2:24 / run 1:20) . This placed him 4th in in his category and 10th male overall . A superb performance considering there were quite a few pro’s and former pro’s racing.

Adam Bailey (25-29) was back in action again at the Challenge Lisbon Half Ironman, despite a pretty nasty bike crash Adam managed to show his metal by getting back on to post a speedy 4:34:19 ( 30min swim / 2:31 bike / 1:28 run) placing 4th in category.

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Jerome Jones (40-44) also put in a massive 19min PB at The Outlaw Half Ironman going 5hrs 1min (swim 33:13/ bike 2:39 / run 1:44) . A gutsy performance despite suffering from a severe case of housemaids knee.

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Stefano Lolli (40-44 / right in pic) kicked off his season with a fine performance Mallorca Olympic distance triathlon posting 2hrs 24mins (24min swim /1:11 bike /45min run). A real breakthrough swim and bike performance that was only slowed on the run by breathing issues and stomach cramps. Never the less it was a 8min PB on the previous year.

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Chris O’Neill (50-55) has been in action twice during May and put in terrific new PBs in both races. At the St Neots Olympic triathlon he posted 3hrs 11mins  (32min swim / 1:41 bike / 50min run )  and then at the Windsor half marathon he posted  2hrs 14mins.

I also had the pleasure of going down to watch the Sprint distance World Championships qualifiers at Dorney Lake last weekend where 3 Team Nagi athletes were in action. All chasing those coveted Team GB slots and all very much at the start of their journeys. All performed brilliantly on the day for where there are in their current triathlon development with Jo setting a new 4min PB and Helen setting 7min PB based on last years times.

Jo Irwin (45-49 cat) 1:21:57 (swim 15:34 / bike 39:04 / run 24:43)

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Helen Read (60-64 cat) 1:28:57 (swim 15:34 / bike 41:53 / run 26:51)

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David Magyar (55-59 cat) 1:21:17 (swim 15:01 / bike 39:36 / run 22:40)

Aymeric De Jessey (35-39) also kicked of his season in fine style at the same venue but a different race posting 1hr 20mins (swim 14mins / bike 37mins / run 24mins)

Really great work everyone, some truly outstanding race performances for so early in the season.

Team Kit 

I’m hugely thankful to Storm Trentham founder of the now legendary D.B.A sports apparel for providing some new additions to the Team Nagi kit  & clothing range. Please click on the link to see what’s available. http://www.dbasportsapparel.com/team-nagi-triathlon-coaching/

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“DBA Sports Apparel is the new, innovative and comfortable sportswear created to make you get up and stand out. The motivational quote gives you that little extra inspiration. That extra 1% that everyone talks about.”

For those of you that want to order Team race kit please click on the image below. The password is 111. Please note it is available in both black and white.

Any queries please Email: doris@nimblewear.com

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What’s even more exciting is Team Nagi comedian/super hunk Tony Peach got so excited when his new kit arrived the other day he decided to do his very own impromptu modeling shoot! This magnificent specimen of a man reliably informs me the Tony Peach calendar will be available for order very soon.

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Physio tip of the month

In this video physio Mark Green of ‘The Locker Room’ provides some great tips on how how to use the foam roller. A key piece of kit that helps aid leg recovery & lowers the risk of injury.

 “The Locker Room is a website which has been designed by a runner and a physiotherapist who has been treating runners, cyclists and triathletes for over 20 years. In The Locker Room you will learn everything you need to know to manage your body and your injuries to become a faster, stronger athlete”. Mark Green. 

Photo of the month 

“Gold in the water”

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The winning photo for May came during a Thursday late evening swim squad. At 8.40pm the most incredible rainbow appeared that dropped directly into the swimming pool. Maybe it was a sign, my swimmers will no doubt claim they were producing “Gold in the water”, who am I to disagree?

Q & A  with 70.3 World Championship Qualifier – Andy Rogerson

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Name:

Andrew Rogerson

Age: 

30

Years in triathlon: 

4.5 years of dedicated triathlon training. But I did a lot of running and swimming for fun as a youngster.

Occupation:

Doctor (geriatrics trainee)

Favourite training session:

Long run in the great outdoors – I love the simplicity and freedom of running. If I wasn’t doing tri I’d probably get into ultra-running. But I also love the exhilaration of a painful Wattbike session – few things beat that feeling of having pushed yourself really hard.

Favourite sports star: 

A few – difficult to pick one! There’s something very appealing about the pursuit of excellence in any field. However I’m primarily an endurance enthusiast so most of my favourite athletes are triathletes and cyclists. I was recently “introduced” to Graeme Obree by Julian, and found his autobiography fascinating – I love his unhinged, desperate will to win, and his scientific genius. Many of the triathlete I admire most are women: I’m a big fan of Meredith Kessler, Siri Lindley, Chrissie Wellington and Lucy Gossage, for various reasons. Chrissie stands out in particular. I found her book intoxicating because of her passion and purity of purpose – it was instrumental in getting me hooked in this sport.

Least favourite training session: 

1 hour easy on the garage turbo. Boredom is much worse than lactate!

Favourite training track:

I prefer silence when doing key sessions – it helps me focus. I find that the session and the music detract from each other when I’m trying to get the most out of myself. But I often listen to music when doing the “easy” (hard) session above! Preferences range from cheesy pop (e.g. Mika) to Guns n Roses or Muse.

Favourite training venue/location: 

Anywhere outdoors and beautiful, with just myself for company and the sun shining! But I have also learned to love the stationary bike: I know how good it is for me so it’s no longer a drag as it used to be.

Training hours per week:

In the past 6 weeks I’ve trained 10-12h/week. But in the 6 months prior to that I was averaging around 6h/ week, which doesn’t seem much but worked amazingly well.

How was your training build up to St Polten 70.3 ?

Not what I expected! I had about 21 days of effectively no training in March due to illness. This was the 5th bout of illness I’d had since October, and by far the worst, with lethargy that went on and on. However after this we managed a 7-week period of consistent training and I was blown away with how quickly the fitness returned. I will try not to let illness worry me again, and just embrace it as an extended recovery period!

What were your race goals?

I had no specific time goals – the only goals I had were how I wanted to feel at each point in the race. I wanted to take the swim a bit easier, then push hard on the bike and get into a sort of zen state for the run. For this reason I chose to race without a watch – the first time I’ve tried that at a major race. Good move – I won’t be using it in a race again!

How did it go?

Loved it! One of the toughest races I’ve done because a) hilly bike courses are not my forte, and b) I pushed myself harder than ever. I had pictured myself running the last 10K with a sense of abandon, mental detachment, and with no fear of blowing up. And I achieved exactly that, which I’m thrilled about. I learned that the body can always take more than you think. It’s a great experience, and I can’t wait to do it again and take it even deeper.

The of course the cherry on the cake was getting a 70.3 World Champs slot on the roll down!

What’s next?

Edinburgh 70.3 – Can’t wait! I studied in Edinburgh, I love the city and am really excited about being in Scotland’s first Ironman event. And it’s a point-to-point bike course, which makes it interesting. And the battered mars bars at the aid stations will be awesome!

Then some more training before off to Chattanooga for the World Champs!

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I also welcome your feedback at julian.nagi@gmail.com