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What To Expect in the 2018 Life Time Tri Series

 

The 2018 Life Time Tri season is about to get interesting…

If you haven’t heard yet, we’re taking some bold steps next year, launching a myriad of new initiatives that the industry hasn’t yet seen.

Our goal is to make the sport of triathlon a bit more friendly for new athletes, as well as enhance the experience of our seasoned veterans.

Why? It’s simple. We need to bring new life to short course triathlon.

Like any industry, if we’re to remain relevant to our existing marketplace, or even consider tapping into new audiences, we’ve got to adapt. We must find ways to convince veterans to have another go. We must invent opportunities for millennials to consider short course triathlon in their evoked set of personal activities.

While we’ll continue producing high-value events in iconic destinations, no longer can our incredible team label ourselves as “event producers.” Instead, we now consider ourselves to be in the Athlete Development business. Each of us are responsible for motivating, educating and physically preparing our customers for the challenge at hand. Make no mistake, this is all heavy lifting – and it’s needed.

After 12+ years in this sport, we continue to believe that short course triathlon still has its place in the endurance universe. We want to inspire and influence the multisport lifestyle for years to come, which is why our 2018 season will focus on these four initiatives:

  • We will simplify our approach.
  • We will increase accessibility to the party.
  • We will incorporate convenience into our sport.
  • We will rekindle the fun factor.

Allow me to explain…

Simplify
Let’s start with pricing. This year, all event prices include both registration fees and insurance. If you’ve ever attempted to explain the concept of secondary participant coverage fees to a non-triathlete, you understand.

Then, there’s the inclusion of both Coaches and Race Officials at each of our 2018 races. If you participated in our 2017 events, you likely observed the “Ask A Coach” booth at the Expo. This will be a standard next year, staffed by race-familiar experts whose duty is to offer complimentary, face to face guidance – from education to motivation, whatever it takes to reduce confusion and/or enhance the athlete experience.

Speaking of our Race Officials, you may notice something a bit different from them in 2018: actual athlete interaction. New penalty assessment is here. Gone are the days of being surprised with 2 or 4-minute additions to your finish times. Now, should an Official experience a rule infraction, they will automatically communicate with the offender – who will subsequently be directed to a penalty tent placed beyond T2. Much like Ironman and ITU, athletes will serve time penalties while on-course. Once they cross the finish line, there are no modifications to timing – which alleviates many historic awards ceremony issues. Stay tuned for full details on the 2018 rules.

Accessibility
Our goal is to make triathlon more diverse and more appealing to the masses. That means we need to be prepared to offset typical barriers to entry, often educational, physical training or financially-focused.

As for education, we will continue to offer free programs in every market, from Tri101 webinars, to fully-immersive first-timers’ programs. We will also offer physical training options, from online training plans to complimentary swim clinics to comprehensive (fee-based) in-club coached sessions. Of course, we’ll continue to support Women For Tri, local Para Tri organizations, inner-city development programs, and others looking to expand triathlon’s reach.

We’re also excited about our new scholarship program. We get it – triathlons are not cheap! To support those in financial need, Life Time Tri is proud to introduce a unique program to ease the possible financial burden. Twelve race entries will be donated across each of our events. Learn more.

Indoor Triathlons return on January 21, 2018. This national event series is the ultimate promotional opportunity for our sport. Last year, more than 6,000 individuals (the majority with zero triathlon experience) participated in the 10-minute swim, 30-minute bike and 20-minute run events. At only $30 each, these are hot commodities (and each limited to 100 participants). Like our outdoor races, registration opens November 1. Details here.

By the way, the 2018 2XU New York City Triathlon returns to general entry this year. Gone is the lottery process, which started back in 2010. With 4,000 slots up for grabs, and now accessible to a first-come, first-served audience, this race will quickly sell out.

Convenience
Simply put, triathlon is anything but convenient. Tons of gear. Early mornings. Long waits. This sport can test anyone’s patience. Where we can, we’ll expand the model in place at the Chicago Triathlon, with flexible transition access, allowing for late check-ins or early check-outs.

In 2018, we will offer beginner-friendly starts at all races. During registration, participants will notice a new set of “race divisions,” where they select from either Competitive or Recreational groups. These new divisions (e.g. First-Timers, Friends + Family) will begin at separate times from the often intense, veteran triathletes. Allowing athletes to start with, and participate alongside, others of their choosing is long overdue. Further, some events will feature “Early Bird” or “Late Owl” start options – scheduled at the extreme ends of the day. Because these individuals are taken out of typical Age Groups, they are designated as Recreational athletes, thus not eligible for competitive awards. Capacities will vary by event.

Another convenience we’re incorporating into select event is race day Packet Pick Up. Available to the first 25 individuals at South Beach, CapTex, Minneapolis and Tempe (more races to come), athletes will be able to skip the Expo and check-in on race morning – a huge convenience for those with busy weekend plans, or those hoping to avoid hotels. A $25 convenience fee will apply.

The Fun Factor
If we’re not having fun, what’s the point?  We’re taking a stand, rolling-up our sleeves and mandating that everyone enjoy themselves while participating in our events! Sure, it’s OK to be (a bit) serious, but in the end, we want to see your smiling faces at the finish line. Staff and volunteers will be there to greet you, and to properly “knight” you with some new hardware. Through our partners at Athlinks, we’ll eventually be able to celebrate first-timer finishes and PRs, too – right in the finish chute!

Last week, we debuted the 4-person Mixed Relay competition in San Diego – to rave reviews! In the near future, we plan to unveil more experimental race formats like this, offering unique iterations of the classic swim-bike-run format. Chicago’s Triple Challenge will certainly return in 2018, as well as a new “Double” format in select markets.

Finally, it doesn’t get more exciting that the 2018 Life Time Tri Championship event, held within the 2018 2XU NYC Tri on July 1. We’re recognizing and rewarding the fastest athletes across the Life Time Tri Series with a blowout in NYC! Free biking shipping, a $50K prize purse and VIP access is only the beginning. Two qualifying races remain: South Beach (with expanded qualification standards [6-deep] due to Escape to Miami’s cancellation) and CapTex in Austin.

 

So, that’s our plan. We realize this is a lot, but it’s all necessary. Necessity stimulates innovation. Innovation leads to growth. Or so we hope.

Over the next 13 days, and forthcoming weeks and months, we’ll continue to deep dive into each of these innovative programs, philosophies and opportunities. Meanwhile, mark your calendars for Wednesday, November 1 at noon when registration opens for all 2018 events.

Let’s do this!

Scott “Hootie” Hutmacher
Brand Manager, LIFE TIME Tri

These Three Women Define Strength

To recognize International Women’s Day, IRONMAN did a virtual sit-down with three of triathlon’s most inspiring women. Read on to find out their views on life and triathlon.

 

 

 

 

by Jennifer Ward


Christina Hopper: Mother of three and the first female African-American fighter pilot to face combat in a major war.

Has triathlon altered or affected how you see yourself as a woman? If so, how?

It has altered how I see myself as a person. I was an athlete when I was young, but after completing college, I didn’t really compete in sports anymore. When I took up triathlon three years ago, I rediscovered a part of myself that I thought had died. It has given me a renewed sense of confidence and vigor. It has given me renewed energy and helped me to see that age is a state of mind.

What has been one of the biggest challenges you’ve faced personally as a woman, an athlete, or both?

One of the biggest challenges I have faced as a triathlete is balancing life demands with all of the training and trying to reach my goals. In order to garner and maintain the support of my husband and family, I had to decide that my goal was not going to be “to be the best.” That goal would have required me to put my life on hold to train. Instead, I set the goal that I would “be the best that I could be within the time constraints of my life.” I set realistic goals within those constraints and feel good about what I was accomplishing both at home and in sport.

What are your tips for balancing training with a full life?

I think one of the most important things to remember is that triathlon is not your life, it’s just a part of your life. If you keep that in perspective, things fall into their proper place. You don’t need to fit someone else’s training plan into your life. Do what makes sense for your schedule. For me, that usually means getting up early and getting training in before my kids are up and before work.

What do you wish you’d known when you started triathlon? What’s your best tip for a first-time female triathlete?

I wish I would have known that it is better to go into a race slightly underprepared than it is to go in overtrained. There were so many times when I thought I just needed to get in a few extra miles or to go a little bit faster than planned and then I ended up injured. Now I live by the motto: “train smarter, not harder.” Being strategic in training and listening to your body when it tells you to back off or rest goes a long way toward longevity in the sport and success in reaching your goals.

As part at Women For Tri, we are doing a “Women for Tri Workout Wednesday” where we encourage women to celebrate the day by working out together, empowering each other, and sharing their photos. Is there anything you’d like to to say to all the women working out on that day?

I, too, have a group of friends I train with regularly. We call ourselves the Before Breakfast Club. Getting up early and training with them is therapy for me. I think it is wonderful to train with other women to share ideas, successes and failures, and encouragement. It is a natural forum to learn from each other and to celebrate the achievement of goals. Doing life together with others and building others up makes life worth living.


Shirin Gerami: The first woman to represent Iran in a triathlon.

Has triathlon altered or affected how you see yourself as a woman? If so, how?

It has definitely affected me as a human being. I feel it has given me a more positive outlook on life, and given me more confidence in working hard towards my goals.

What has been one of the biggest challenges you’ve faced personally as a woman, an athlete, or both?

The constant labelling, stereotyping, and boxing into how/what/who I ought to be, and the challenge of concentrating on who I am and the person I want to grow into, rather than binding myself to what other people expect and assume me to be. That has actually been a huge challenge.

What are your tips for balancing training with a full life?

I wish I had the answer! I’m still trying to figure that out myself.

What do you wish you’d known when you started triathlon? What’s your best tip for a first-time female triathlete?

I have loved the journey exactly as it has been. The thrill and curiosity of the unknown, the surprises, the growth, the ups, downs and up-side downs. Passing on what Paula Newby Fraser has always told me: “don’t overthink it.”


Turia Pitt: Inspirational Australian woman who suffered burns to 65% of her body in 2011. She completed two IRONMAN events in 2016.

Has triathlon altered or affected how you see yourself as a woman? If so, how?

It’s given me a lot more confidence and a lot more belief in my abilities, especially since I set the goal of doing an IRONMAN when I was in a hospital bed. I think just having that goal is something massive to work toward. As I got closer and closer to it, it made me believe in myself a lot more. I think having that self belief and self confidence that’s crucial for anyone in all stages of their lives.

What has been one of the biggest challenges you’ve faced personally as a woman, an athlete, or both?

As an athlete, it’s got to be my injuries. I’ve only got three fingers now which makes swimming more difficult, and it’s harder for me to use my bike like a normal person would. As a woman, we have a tendency to not back ourselves and not believe in ourselves and I think that’s a pretty big challenge. And also, because the sport of triathlon is fairly male dominated, even just finding training partners was really difficult for me. I guess I’m luckier than most because my partner was very fit so I’d do a lot of training with him. I still think if there were more women in the sport that would be really good for everyone.

What are your tips for balancing training with a full life?

I think my tip is that I had to learn to let myself off the hook. If I didn’t do very well in a training session or was really tired and didn’t go as hard as I would’ve liked or didn’t eat my recovery meals at the right time—I think you’ve just got to recognize that no one’s perfect and we’re all just doing the best we can. In the scheme of things if you miss a session or your day doesn’t go as planned it’s not the end of the world.

What do you wish you’d known when you started triathlon? What’s your best tip for a first-time female triathlete?

To not take it too seriously. It’s a sport that we all do because we love it, and I think you can forget about that and get really serious. That for me saps all the fun and enjoyment out of it.

As part at Women For Tri, we are doing a “Women for Tri Workout Wednesday” where we encourage women to celebrate the day by working out together, empowering each other, and sharing their photos. Is there anything you’d like to to say to all the women working out on that day?

I’d say dream big, believe in yourself, and know that if you put the work in, you’ll see results!

Originally from: http://www.ironman.com/triathlon/news/articles/2017/03/international-womens-day-round-table.aspx#ixzz4akIexN29

Give the Gift of Triathlon this Holiday Season

Looking for the perfect gift for the triathlete in your life? Order a Life Time Tri gift card!

We are now offering physical gift cards for the following Life Time Tri events:

  • South Beach Triathlon
  • Life Time Tri Marquee
  • Life Time Tri CapTex
  • Life Time Tri Minneapolis presented by Just Bare Chicken
  • Transamerica Chicago Triathlon Mack Cycle
  • Escape to Miami Triathlon presented by Voler

Order your gift cards by 12/20 12:00pm CST to receive them before the holidays!

Click here to ORDER NOW!

*Gift cards will come with unique code on the back for redemption.

Must be redeemed on the corresponding event website that it was originally purchased for.

If you have additional questions, please email us at chicagoregistration@lifetimefitness.com.

Registration Now Open for the 2017 Life Time Tri Series

We invite you to join us as we #CommitToTri in 2017!

Each event features an International distance course, which consists of a 1.5-kilometer swim, a 40-kilometer bike and a 10-kilometer run (distances may vary slightly by location). Select events also offer Sprint, SuperSprint and Kids Triathlon courses of shorter, varying distances.

 

2017 Life Time Tri Series Race Schedule

Event

Date

Register

Life Time Tri South Beach

April 2, 2017

Register Now

Life Time Tri Marquee

April 9, 2017

Register Now

Life Time Tri CapTex

May 29, 2017

Register Now

Life Time Tri Minneapolis

July 8, 2017

Register Now

New York City Triathlon

July 16, 2017

Register Now

Transamerica Chicago Triathlon

August 27, 2017

Register Now

Mack Cycle Escape to Miami Triathlon

September 24, 2017

Register Now

 

To register or learn more about any of the 2017 Life Time Tri events, visit www.LifeTimeTri.com. Stay updated with the latest information by following @LifeTimeTri on Twitter and the Life Time Tri Facebook page.

Introducing Women for Tri

by Laurel Leicht (former Fitness Editor for Shape Magazine)

I spent countless hours this year training for my first IRONMAN race—long rides on the weekends, early-morning runs, swims after work. Though I was devoting so much time to preparing for the race, it seemed surreal that I was actually going to attempt to cover such a long distance in one day. I’d only ever done Olympic-distance triathlons before; now I was going to try to do about four times that mileage within one 17-hour stretch? Was I completely crazy?

A month before I was supposed to travel to Panama City, Florida, for the race, I still hadn’t wrapped my head around what I was about to embark on. At that point, I was lucky enough to get the opportunity to interview several inspirational women who were about to race the IRONMAN World Championship in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii. Their stories were amazing because of all the obstacles they’d overcome: blindness, breast cancer, the loss of a husband in military combat. I was especially moved by their experiences though, because all these women seemed so real. They were all just regular people, like me, balancing work and family and squeezing training in somewhere in between it all. Mirinda Carfrae is a badass and incredibly inspirational, but almost super-human. Speaking with these female age-group athletes, I realized how you don’t have to be a world-class competitor to cross the line at an IRONMAN race; you just need to have the drive and put in the time.

That’s the message IRONMAN and Life Time want to extend to women across the country with their new nationwide “Women for Tri” initiative. By increasing awareness and interest in the sport of triathlon, along with providing content and training resources, the program aims to unite and empower female athletes of all fitness levels and help them reach their goals.

Love triathlon and want to get involved? IRONMAN and Life Time are looking for a select group of influential women from all walks of life who are passionate about triathlon to be a part of the Board of Advisors. Anyone with a passion for triathlon can apply, whether you are an age-group athlete, coach, pro or are otherwise involved with the industry. The board will work with IRONMAN and Life Time to research, brainstorm, create and put into action new steps to grow female participation. If you’re interested, contact Amanda Wregg or Lindsey Kurhajetz at womenfortri@ironman.com before January 1, 2015.

They’re putting together an Ambassador Street Team, as well, to mentor and help cultivate new athletes. Stay tuned for more information about how to join the street team in coming months.

I didn’t have this initiative while prepping for my own race, but I did have an incredibly supportive female coach and talked to as many IRONMAN-experienced women for their training and racing advice as I could. Still, come race day, I was a bit of a basket case.

Amid the nerves buzzing around the beach that morning, I just happened to run into one of my favorite women from my Kona interviews: Sister Madonna Buder. At 84, she’s the oldest female finisher of an IRONMAN race (IRONMAN Canada when she was 82), has finished upwards of 50 IRONMAN races, and looked cool as a cucumber that morning. We took a picture together and wished each other luck. Knowing that she and so many other strong women would be traveling along the course with me all day helped me walk to the start line with confidence and a sense of peace. That’s the kind of support I hope many female triathletes, both brand new to the sport and seasoned, will find in the new Women for Tri initiative.

Commitment Day Festival Set to Inspire Improved Health in the New Year

As the battle of the bulge wages on in America, we’re seeing skyrocketing obesity rates and lower life expectancies among children. Life Time–The Healthy Way of Life Company aims to inspire positive change by opening its doors to the community and hosting one million workouts across the country during its Commitment Day Festival (January 1), Fun Run (January 1-4) and Indoor Triathlon Workout (January 4).

Set to take place at 113 Life Time destinations from coast to coast, the festival will feature healthy family events all weekend long. In addition, 52 Life Time destinations will host the annual Commitment Day 5K Fun Run on January 1 for all ages and abilities to join together in a symbolic commitment to lead healthier, more active lives in 2015. Adding on to the weekend of fitness fun includes the inaugural Indoor Triathlon Workout on January 4 in partnership with IRONMAN at 79 Life Time destinations to encourage and educate people of all athletic abilities on the sport of triathlon.

“The Commitment Festival is all about doing our part to inspire a healthier America,” said Bahram Akradi, founder, chairman, president and CEO of Life Time. “On the heels of successful Commitment Day 5K Fun Run events the last two years, we have expanded it this year to become a four-day festival that features a wide variety of educational workshops and invigorating classes that fit most interests. Ultimately, it is our goal to help individuals and families make 2015 their best yet in terms of taking charge of their health, wellness and happiness.”

The Commitment Festival is open to both members and non-members and will kick off on January 1, 2015 with the Commitment Day 5K Fun Run taking place in 52 cities around the country. The Commitment Day Festival offers a variety of educational and entertaining events, including:

  • Daily Fit Talks and Workout Workshops (January 1) – The FIT Talks series is designed to educate and empower participants with approachable, relevant and simple life-changing actions, such as breaking up with sugar, eating fat to burn fat and explaining why counting calories won’t lead to long term results. Participants also may attend a Workout Workshop in which they’ll have an opportunity to learn and burn with new workouts such as ViPR, LT Connect, Strength and Flexibility, Battling Ropes, Upper Body Strength & Tone and more.
  • Alpha Madness (January 2) – The Life Time Alpha program is designed for anyone looking to lose weight or enhance performance. Participants will start with a Get Connected Seminar to introduce heart rate training via LT Connect, which helps them train smarter not harder. From there, they’ll have the opportunity to compete against themselves in an Alpha Workout focused on functional movements suitable for all ages and fitness abilities.
  • Yoga Commitment Jam (January 3) – Yogis and beginners alike will de-stress from the holidays and kick off a commitment to yoga with 90-minute Vinyasa Flow class suitable for all ages and abilities.
  • Indoor Triathlon Hour powered by Life Time Tri and IRONMAN (January 4) – Redefine your 2015: commit to tri. If you’ve ever wanted to try a tri, this is where to start. Inspiration without intimidation, the 60-minute indoor workout will feature a 10-minute pool swim, 30-minute spin and 20-minute treadmill run. Athletes of all abilities from beginner to experienced are invited. All participants who register for and attend the Indoor Triathlon Hour ($25 fee) receive a lifestyle training shirt, swim cap, race bib, $20 off a $100 purchase at the ironmanstore.com, one free month of Masters swim lessons with Life Time Swim (new participants only) and $10 off a purchase of $50 or more at LifeSpa, plus, are eligible for a chance to win one of three slots to the 2015 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship in Zell am See-Kaprun, SalzburgerLand, Austria or, one of five slots to a Life Time Tri Series race. Learn more about event locations and registration at www.indoortri.com. Limited spots available per club. BONUS: Anyone who goes to ironman.com/committotri, fills out the form and registers for a Life Time or IRONMAN 70.3 branded triathlon in the United States or Canada between November 20, 2014 and January 4, 2015 will be entered in for a chance to win one slot to the 2015 IRONMAN World Championship in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii!

The Commitment Day Festival will also feature the Commitment Bowl, a football-focused activity where parents and kids alike will practice their passing, catching, agility drills and cheerleading skills, Poolapalooza and an indoor pool party featuring beach-inspired pool games and tropical tunes. Each day will wrap up with an evening celebration such as a healthy happy hour, social cycle class or LifePower Yoga class.

Registration is now open for Commitment Day 5K Fun Walk/Run events. Kids 12 and under are free. For more information about Commitment Day, or to register for the January 1 5K fun walk/run near you, visit commitmentday.com. Be sure to like Commitment Day on Facebook and follow the movement on Twitter for the latest updates and event news.

Ring in the new year with fitness and get on track for a fun, happy and healthy 2015. We hope to see you there!

How To Carb-Unload Your Favorite Pasta Dish

By Brooke Schohl, MS, RD

It’s the night before a big race. A giant bowl of pasta is just what the doctor ordered, right? No – the carb-loading ship has sailed. Use these tips to make your favorite pasta dish more metabolically efficient.  

While endurance athletes absolutely need carbs in their diet, too much of this macronutrient hinders the body’s ability to burn fat for fuel. Fat is the preferred substrate for everyday fueling as well as training/racing. Think about it: your carb stores top out at two or three hours; your fat stores can carry you through up to 10 long-distance races.

Many training foods are heavy in the carb department (easily digestible simple sugars), as athletes need quick energy during training/racing. But is this the best fueling strategy for your day-to-day life? Instead fill the body with foods that stabilize blood sugar, keep energy levels consistent and improve satiety. Counteract carbohydrate blood sugar spikes by adding a fat and protein source to meals and snacks. Include carbs in your daily diet but make them the sideshow (along with fat, protein and vegetables) instead of the main act.

If you’re a pasta junkie, don’t freak out. Use the following tips to carb-unload your favorite pasta recipe and make it more metabolically efficient.

1. Swap regular pasta for quinoa or brown rice pasta.
When you do eat grains, make sure they are quality choices. Enriched flour pastas have little nutritional value and are high in calories.

2. Reduce pasta amount by half or 3/4.
You don’t need an entire box of pasta for a dish to taste great. Cut the amount and see if you even miss it.

3. Add more veggies.
Increase the ratio of vegetables to pasta. The fiber in the veggies will fill you up more than the pasta ever could.

4. Easy on the milk, butter and cheese.
Don’t eliminate these ingredients – you’d miss out on the delicious sauce and consuming fat is ok. Simply scale back a little (try cutting these ingredients in half). Again, you won’t miss it.

Bottom line: Experiment with recipes – don’t feel locked into the ingredients and amounts. This also holds true for restaurant dining. Be comfortable with the meal you select at a restaurant or prepare at home. There’s no need to eliminate favorite meals, just modify them to fit your healthy, super-fit lifestyle. Enjoy guilt-free, that’s the way it should be.

Brooke Schohl, MS, RD, METS, is a registered sports dietitian and the owner of Fuel to the Finish Endurance Nutrition Coaching in Scottsdale, Arizona. She is an avid triathlete, having completed many triathlons of all distances including three Ironman races. She integrates that personal experience and knowledge into developing customized, sport-specific, metabolically efficient fueling plans for her clients. Brooke and her husband, John, own two Scottsdale, Arizona-based triathlon stores named Destination Kona. For more information on services and offerings, visit her website at www.fueltothefinish.com.