5 Things NOT to do in the off season

The 2013 season is officially over, and that day-after-Christmas feeling plus 7 lbs. have officially set in. But why wallow in leftover pizza and sweatpants when you can maybe help the tri community at large, I ask? So here’s a few tips, learned (maybe) through my own experience, that just may save you from mounds of regret come March.

Whatever you do, this winter, do NOT do the following:

1. Pretend the pool doesn’t exist.

I know. I want the pool to go away too 😦 But as much as you might view the off-season as 4 whole months of chlorine-free living, you will regret it come April, when your first Oly is a week away and your shoulders have the range of motion of a peanut.

Instead, do what I do. Write up a few old-reliable workouts, 2,000 meters or so, that you can fall back on brainlessly. I keep mine short enough to be able to complete the whole thing begrudgingly. Too long and you’re likely to quit halfway through the warmup. Here’s a favorite of mine:

The Kit Hayes I Don’t Feel Like Swimming Swim Workout

  • 500 W/U (300 free, 100 back, 100 breast)
  • 4 x 100 Free FAST!!!!!! (like 95%)
  • 3x  the following:
  • 100 kick
  • 100 pull
  • 100 drill
  • 100 free
  • Then do about 100 cooldown

If that doesn’t work, remember that there are other strokes than freestyle. I have indeed come to learn that a good old-fashioned set of 8×100 IM is not only way more entertaining than a solid set of free, but also a thoroughly ass kicking workout. Just make sure you make regular eye contact with the lifeguard so she doesn’t mistake your spastic thrashing (aka “Butterfly”) as drowning.

If it makes you feel any better, you have my full support for doing a happy dance those times you get there and see the sign “No lap swim today. Pool is closed for yet another class involving 4 kids that really only need one lane.”

2. Compensate for your lack of spending ridiculous amounts of $ on gel, Heed, kinesiotape, race tires, and massage therapy by spending ridiculous amounts of $ on “trendy” (read, cute on someone else but just awkward, too revealing, and itchy on you) clothing.

Especially shoes. Because your black toenails and bunions just don’t look right in the super awesome, high heeled, open-toed, sparkly combat boots. And you’ll never wear the dress.

Trust me, save the dough for the purple glittery Sidi’s that you know must be coming out this year (pleeeeeease?)

3. Turn into the douchy guys next to me at the coffee shop talking about British authors, hibernation, and using words like “meritocracy” and taking down the royal family.

Because they’re kind of annoying, and I know I could kick their asses HARD on the bike. Hell, I could probably kick their butts in the pool. And really, you don’t want to be that slow. Just remember that when you talk out loud in a quiet room, others are listening.

4. Join a roller derby team.

Yeah, I know it’s tempting. Skate around in the warm, dry, windless indoors and get your core, glutes, and quads in killer shape so you entry your first race of the year already bruised and tough and ready to look all cute in your tri shorts. But trust me, this is a bad idea. Don’t get me wrong; derby is hella fun, and you indeed will get in killer shape as a triathlete, because you will be the hardest working athlete on th team. But you will hurt yourself and not be able to run for a year. Don’t do it!

5. Drink too much beer.

Wait, never mind….on my way to the bar. Beer is good carbs.

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