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Here are my top gifts for triathletes this year:
I learned at IRONMAN FLORIDA that you can try new things on race day. This was one of those things. I knew from my experience at Chatty that I needed to carry my own nutrition. I carried NBS Hydration (Pineapple) in this amazing little flask. For SIX HOURS! I had never used one before but it proved to be comfortable, easy to hold and is lightweight. Plus, I was able to stash extra nutrition, BioFreeze packets, a Pickle Pop and chapstick in the pocket.
What an amazing not-sweet treat in the middle of your race or big training day. If you get tired of gels and cola and fruit and Red Bull and all the sweet there is to eat, this is an amazing change to your taste buds! Freeze these and then store them in a cooler on training days. When you return from your ride and right before your brick run, slurp one of these nearly frozen dill pickle pops and you will be ready to roll. They are also great warm in the middle of a ride or served over ice at an aid station. Yum! Pickles!
Oh how I love thee, let me count the ways. These amazing packets of relief fit in the pockets of my aforementioned nathan handheld and in the past I’ve stuffed them in my tri jersey, bento box on the bike, race belt and all my special needs bags. These little packets are helpful for aches and pains, but more importantly they are amazing in hot weather! I spread a little on my neck, wrists and low back to create a cooling sensation even at White Lake, Chatty and Florida.
One of my iron friends gave me this book right before Chatty with a fantastic note inside and a reminder to embrace the day. I read it the night before both of my IRONMANs this year and chanted SWIM, BARK, RUN, Everyone Have Fun a few times during the race. It’s a great gift for the triathlete in your life or for a triathlete in training. It’s not just for kiddos! Remember, we get to do this sport because it feels like being a kid again (only faster!).
This book is a COMPLETELY different take on how to handle all your different mental challenges as an athlete. Forget simple mantras and visualization - The Brave Athlete will give you real tools to overcome all the overthinking and overfeeling so you’ll get better at swimbikerun and LIFE! As a coach, you need to read the whole book. As an athlete, read the first chapter and then skip to the chapters that apply to you. Either way, do ALL the activities and you will start to tame the mind monkey!
I’ve had this book on my shelf for over a year but really dug into it after Age Group Nationals when I had crazy race nerves (first time in years!) in the days leading into the race. I wanted to figure that out and a dozen other ways that my Chimp Brain takes over when I least need it. Here are a few of the topics covered:
I wish I felt more like a “real” athlete.
I don’t think I can.
I need to harden the F* Up.
I keep screwing up in races.
I don’t like leaving my comfort zone.
I don’t handle pressure well.
Buy every pair. Seriously. You can’t go wrong with any of the styles. The R1 is great (sizewise) for the pool and for open water. I prefer the amber mirror and the vermillion mirror for open water.
I took a step out of my comfort zone when I got these earlier this year. I didn’t think they were really my style but……. I. FREAKING. LOVE THEM. They provide the full coverage I need for my round face. They look good on everyone. You can dress them up or sport them up. Best of all, they are scratch resistant. This is from a girl who drops them regularly and rarely uses the case.