Sunday, April 29, 2012

What! A! Week!

Wow, it has been a rough week for Coach A and several of my Spark Athletes (Oh, how I just want to call you all Sparklers, but I know I would get my butt kicked by some for that! ;)  I ended up with a vicious flu and spent the night in the hospital, one of my athletes is having some serious knee pain that needs to be nipped in the bud, and yet another athlete missed a whole week of workouts due to an insane work schedule.  What else do we all have in common besides a bad week?  We had all trained for and were scheduled to run yesterday's Lakefront 10 Miler, where it was 40 degrees and raining with 20 mph winds.  None of us made it to the race.

How you handle a week like this is what makes or breaks you.  For some, this might be the final push in the wrong direction that derails them from their regular workouts.  For others, it may cause them to question their goals and whether they can really be accomplished.   For me, it reminds me that I need to slow down, listen to my body and prioritize my life again around things that are going to make me feel good.

I have missed many races in my career but have almost always come back stronger after I  have had to sit on the sidelines.  Why?  Well, once in a while we all need to slow down and take the long view.  Is a week of not working out going to destroy my entire season?  No.  In fact, I think this week has brought some clarity that I did not previously have.  It is no surprise that I was running around with the world's longest to do list when the flu took me down flat on my back for 48 solid hours.   During those two days I got to thinking about what I could do to clear my plate, breathe a little and enjoy life a little more.  And, in fact, I have taken some very big steps to accomplish those goals.  I am feeling better already (despite my lack of workouts) and am ready to start Monday with a fresh perspective and less stressful schedule.

So, the next time you are sidelined by an injury, illness, or plain old stressful week, take a step back and try to identify what you can do to correct and avoid this situation in the future.   Sometimes a few bad days is all we need to help us realign our attitude and goals and appreciate what we have a little more.  Stay tuned for future posts about coming back after more serious setbacks...are you reading Derrick Rose?

-Coach A

Monday, April 16, 2012

Spark Summer Tri Training Group 2012

Spark Summer Tri Training Group
April 30th- August 26th, 2012
Join USA Triathlon Coach, Angela Park, and fellow triathletes for a summer training program targeting both of Chicago’s downtown Triathlons- South Shore and Chicago!

What is it? A group of 4 (min) to 10 (max) triathletes training, learning and competing together!

Who can do it?  Anybody who has ever wanted to do a triathlon, is looking for a new challenge or who wants to take their triathlon training to the next level!

Will we actually do a triathlon?  Yes!  Our target races will be South Shore Sprint triathlon on July 28th and
Chicago Triathlon (sprint or Olympic) on August 26th.

When and where will practices be?  The practice schedule is:
Mondays 6:30 pm- Run Speed Workout- Lakeshore Park Track
Fridays 6:30 am- Swim, Bike or Brick Workout -Olive Park
All workouts will be one hour except for a few occasional longer combo workouts on Friday mornings.  
Run practices will meet at Lakeshore Park Track, Chicago Ave. between Michigan Ave. and Lake Shore Drive. 
Friday workouts will meet at Olive Park (5oo N Lakeshore Dr)

What will practices be like?  Every workout will be catered towards the group’s specific needs and tailored so that each individual is challenged but not overwhelmed.  A detailed practice plan will be given to participants so they know what equipment is necessary and what to expect each day.  Coach Angela has years of experience working with groups and will structure the workouts to meet each individual’s fitness level. 

What does the Training Group include?  The training group will be lead by USA Triathlon Level II certified coach and personal trainer, Angela Park.  Each group member will receive a training plan for the events and,
due to the small size of the group, lots of personalized attention. 
Angela will also be at South Shore and Chicago to coach, calm and cheer you on. 
Finally, the benefits of group training include camaraderie, motivation, and fun!

What do I need to join?  The items you need to train for and complete your first triathlon are- goggles, swimsuit, bike (any type), helmet, and running shoes!  A wetsuit can be helpful, too.

How do I sign up?  Registration and more info now available through 
Cost:  1x per week $320, 2x per week $560
There will be no practices the week of May 28th.
Signup now…space is very limited!