Ironman Louisville brought a lot of things to light for me as an athlete and a coach. One of which, being my inability to swim in a straight line. As I looked at my zig zagged path through the Ohio River I crossed my fingers that the GPS on Training Peaks was just being dramatic. So I checked Garmin…which unfortunately showed the same jagged line. When competing for a Kona slot, every second matters and my sub-par navigation skills wasted a lot of them.
That being said, correcting this is high on the list of off-season goals. As triathletes we’re so focused on the key workouts that it’s easy to lose sight of the little things that ultimately build into the big picture. Now that the 2016 racing season has come to a close for most people, it’s time to evaluate your performances from a very basic level. How were my transitions? Can I swim in a straight line? Is my core strong enough to stay in aero? What’s my run cadence? Improving the little things can lead to massive gains in overall performance. The off season is the perfect time to focus on this.
Since the race, I’ve been doing my swim warm ups with my eyes closed, only sighting as if I was in open water. It’s awkward and it may look like I’ve had a few adult beverages as I weave side to side in the lane. But, I’m using the resources I have to improve a small skill that will lead to a big time cut. I challenge you to do the same. Don’t roll through the winter without defined goals.