Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Marquee-type tent for this weekend - can anyone help?

Dear All
I've been scraping around trying around to find a marquee-type "pagoda" tent (see attached) for this weekend's race down in Busselton, but to no avail.
Does anyone have anything similar we could borrow? I've had the "ok" to set this up on the side lines to act as both shelter from the sun and as a base for the support crew (and even a place to leave your gear etc). I have also decided that I will take my bike tool box down with me and stand to run through any last minute maintenance check-ups for anyone should they need it (hopefully though you've all had yours done now though as this is really just for a quick "tweak" if necessary) - all of which would be great to do under the shelter!
I'm trying to get a large TEAM CORE banner done up as we speak, so if anyone has any contacts in that field, please call me on 9443 9960.
Thanks guys and go TEAM CORE!
P.S Please make sure you have read the bit of info below about how these emails will work in the future - 3 options for how you receive our news! If you want to keep receiving these emails direct to your inbox you'll need to add your details here. Note that the new website is currently down with a server issue - the technicians are working on it and full service with a new back-up facility will be operational shortly!

  • Enhanced Communication:
In order to keep you better informed of what we're up to and when, we've used some cool technology to keep the new website regularly up-to-date ensuring you don't miss a beat! This facility is great news for you as it allows you more of a decision in how and when you receive this information:
  1. Continue "as is": To continue to receive our exciting news and free tips as they are written, simply enter your email address into the following form: Each time we add new content this will be delivered to you between 3 and 4pm (WST) - no content = no email. In the event of a sudden change to the program (i.e. severe weather etc) please check the Blog for instant clarification of whether the session is still running. From here onwards, unless you add your details here, you will not receive an email from us. Some of you like the tips and news that we provide, others may find it too much "clutter" - and thats OK - there are other options:
  2. Subscribe to our RSS Feed: If you know how to use an RSS Feed, you can simply subscribe to this at - this allows you to get our updated information without having it delivered to your inbox.
  3. Follow our Blog: If you prefer to simply check the website for new information when it suits you, you can simply do this by checking out our Blog at
Paul Newsome
Swim Smooth & The TEAM CORE &
+ 61 (0) 431 540 980
Follow the Blog at

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Official launch of our new triathlon team name and website!

Dear All
Following on from the previous email, I am pleased to announce the birth of our new triathlon and swim training squad here in Perth, W.A! I do hope that you will find the new site very useful (whether you are training with us or not) and that you will continue to support our program where possible.
  • The name - "The T*E*A*M CORE" - Bespoke Triathlon Coaching in a Motivating Squad Environment:

I have my good friend Adam Young to thank for all the time we spent trouble-shooting and trying to come up with a name that really encapsulates what we stand for as a triathlon and swim squad:

T = Triathlon

E = Endurance

A = And

M = Multisport

CORE = Our unique team-like approach to coaching and athlete support, ensuring the longevity of triathlon enjoyment for all!

It was so important for me personally to create both a name and an image which will really give us a sense of team identity and pride, and I'm hoping that you'll agree, "The TEAM CORE" goes a long way to achieving this. The hard part is now up to us to continue to develop this concept. So whether you are training for swimming, cycling, running, triathlon or multisport / adventure racing, we hope that you'll find something of benefit to you within our program.

  • The Concept:

You can read here more about our "Core Values" and philosophy including an explanation of "the 3 C's" - Commitment, Consistency & Camararderie.

  • The New Program:
Effective as of Monday May 5th 2008 and centred around the Claremont Pool on Davies Road - We will not break for the winter, so for those keen on joining from the "off" you can now do so! Check out the program for details of our cool new sessions.
Changes: due to slight differences in the pool bookings at Claremont compared with CCGS, it has been necessary to slightly adjust the new training program. We are hoping that this is still in your favour, especially with the addition of an evening swim session and a saturday afternoon session, as well as an additional Time:4:Me swim as well. We welcome your feedback on the new program!
Frequently Asked Questions can be found and their answers here.
Details of our next group "race-centric" program will be posted up at shortly starting with a 24-week build-up to Ironman WA on Monday the 23rd June (please note some of you guys will prefer a shorter lead-up of 18 weeks and we'll have something starting on Monday 4th August in that case too!).
  • The "Look":
Orders are now being taken for some of our unique team-kit as per Team t-shirts (as per attached) are now ready for collection too! Pretty soon we'll be looking like a truly veritable training team for all abilities and aspirations - I hope you will partake!
  • The "Community":
We now have our very own triathlon chat forum located at Chat forums are great areas to chat and meet new people and learn more about our great sport. I have provided a super-comprehensive link section which provides easy-access to the answers all your commonly asked questions. So the idea is that now when you want to ask a training-related question that you feel comfortable openly asking it on the forum. Its free to join, but the benefit of asking your questions there is that there is a very high chance that someone else is thinking the same thing. Asking your question will allow it to be then answered publically to the benefit of everyone within the group. In such a manner we can grow to become a really strong team! The TEAM CORE community will also comprise those athletes that we coach from overseas / over-east as well as just here in Perth - the word is getting out!
  • The Athletes:
We have a comprehensive list of our athletes up on our website at If your name and details are missing its only because you haven't sent them through. Please attach a photo and some blurb along the same lines as those you see on this page and we'll add your details.
  • Enhanced Communication:
In order to keep you better informed of what we're up to and when, we've used some cool technology to keep the new website regularly up-to-date ensuring you don't miss a beat! This facility is great news for you as it allows you more of a decision in how and when you receive this information:
  1. Continue "as is": To continue to receive our exciting news and free tips as they are written, simply enter your email address into the following form: Each time we add new content this will be delivered to you between 3 and 4pm (WST) - no content = no email. In the event of a sudden change to the program (i.e. severe weather etc) please check the Blog for instant clarification of whether the session is still running. From here onwards, unless you add your details here, you will not receive an email from us. Some of you like the tips and news that we provide, others may find it too much "clutter" - and thats OK - there are other options:
  2. Subscribe to our RSS Feed: If you know how to use an RSS Feed, you can simply subscribe to this at - this allows you to get our updated information without having it delivered to your inbox.
  3. Follow our Blog: If you prefer to simply check the website for new information when it suits you, you can simply do this by checking out our Blog at
  • Online Payment:
We have now added a secure and safe way of purchasing your new session cards through our online payment page: Simply fill in the form, receive your receipt and bring it along to training to receive your PAYG card - easy! You can still choose to download a registration form and bring this along to training with either cash, cheque or credit card details as well. Please note that session cards do not include pool entry for swim sessions, but do include the pre-swim 30 mins core stability and flexibility class which is available before every swim that we now run.
  • Photos - we all love photos!
Check out our new photo gallery at - this will be regularly updated as appropriate. Why not get yourself inspired with our inspirational Desktop Quotes as well (free to download).
Hope that all makes sense. Have fun and please enjoy the new website - we designed it for you!
Paul Newsome
Swim Smooth & The TEAM CORE &
+ 61 (0) 431 540 980
Follow the Blog at

Training this week and beyond...

Dear All
You have no doubtedly received the email from Bill Kirby today detailing the fact that I will no longer be working directly for Kirby Swim after the Half Ironman this weekend, but will instead be shifting our training program just across the road to the Claremont Pool from Monday 5th May onwards. I wish to stress that this has been an amicable and mutual decision and that we both hope to work together in the future on other projects. We both hope to limit the impact that this move will have on you the athlete and thankyou for your support up until this time and from here forward.
I have prepared two separate emails to a) notify you of training this week in the lead-up to the Half Ironman, and b) discuss what new exciting projects and programs we have waiting ahead for you from May 5th under our new team name, "The T.E.A.M CORE" (see more here: )
The most important thing to note I suppose is that despite many people opting to take some well deserved R&R after the Half Ironman, the squad will continue right on through the winter period with no break in operation (as per some other squads at this time of year). Hopefully those of you whom have been inspired by what we have been doing with the Half Ironman group will take advantage of this "quieter" period to pop down to the new exciting sessions and commence your own personal preparations for your future aspirations. We'll be adding some great new sessions which will focus in May and June on developing sound technique and specific strengthening in order to build you up and prevent injury!
NEWSFLASH! New team t-shirts will be available down at Busselton this weekend (see attached). We have had ~ 35 printed off in various sizes (as per the group below and our estimated sizes). The girl's shirts will be in sizes 8, 10 and 12 and will be a fitted long-body "slim-fit" design in 100% cotton. The guy's shirts will be in sizes S, M and L and will be in a "dri-fit" type of non-crease material. Both are very nice. Cost is just $25.00. Please let me know if you would like one - they're VERY cool and we'll certainly all feel like part of a great team when we're down there! You'll be amazed by what this collective unity can do for your spirit on race day! You can collect yours on Friday afternoon at 5pm down at the Busselton Jetty. Let me know if you're not racing but would like one as a supporter / session attendee too!
Big thankyou!
A big thanks to everyone who made the effort to attend Adam's leaving do last night at our house - it was a great night and Adam really enjoyed himself. Thanks also to everyone who contributed towards his camera gift - he was stoked at the notion that you would all chip-in for that and asked me to say thanks to everyone for doing so!
Training this week and last minute race tips...
Tuesday = early morning swim and core stability session from 5.30am to 7am at Christchurch Grammar School Pool. Followed by the Time:4:Me group at 9.30am to 10.30am at Claremont Pool. Session will be light and enjoyable!
Wednesday = meet as usual for a 5.50am start from the Bouchard Cafe on Mount Street for a steady ride around Shelley and then a social coffee afterwards. Ride will only be about 70 mins today.
Thursday = all H.I.M competitors should take Thursday as a rest day. Both early morning and Time:4:Me sessions will still run as per Tuesday (so good opportunity to get some TLC whilst its likely quite quiet!!). There will be no run session on Thursday evening.
Friday = no early morning Cottesloe swim. all H.I.M competitors will likely travel down to Busselton today. If you can squeeze in a 30 mins spin and a 10 mins jog that would be great. We'll meet for a team "debrief" and stretch session at 5pm in front the of jetty prior to registering for the event. Paul will accompany you through the registration area and bike racking process for those of you who feel a little nervous or unsure of what to do and when. Try not to get too stressed today, remember the golden rule - "why stand when you can sit, and why sit when you can lie down!" and make sure you always have a water bottle with you and keep sipping throughout the day (a sports drink as well as just plain water is advisable).
Saturday = race start is 8am onwards, but competitors need to be ready and on the beach from 7.40am for a race briefing. Transition actually opens at 6am, so Paul and Adam will be down at the transition area from this time ensuring you are all managing OK and not stressing out! Remember, you've worked hard for today - so go out there and enjoy yourself!! We'll meet on the beach at 7.25am for some last minute tips or just to give you a hug and tell you you'll be fine! ;-)
Last minute tips:
  1. Don't panic - you're bound to feel a little nervous before the event, but keep this under wraps and stay positive - you CAN do this!
  2. Keep hydrated / rested - we all know we need to do this during the race, but make sure you are now hydrating, fueling and resting well too!
  3. Remember to smile - just getting to the start is a big accomplishment, smile knowing that you can do no more now for your preparation and just get out there and "rip it up!"
  4. Check you have spares - 2 x inner tube, tyre levers and pump - you know now how to use them!
  5. Don't lose your bottle - both metaphorically and literally...believe it or not I've got on the bike in one of my races and realised I left my drinks bottles at home in the fridge - what a plonka Paul!
Saturday evening = after you've ALL finished (and you will!) it'll be time to let our hair down at the after-party and I hope you can all attend as it'll be a great night!
Sunday = rest day
Monday 5th May onwards = check out our new triathlon training program at - all sessions will run from Monday 5th May as per program (even if numbers are a little low in the first couple of weeks). Following email will contain more details!
Thanks everyone - its been a pleasure - lets go for it team!
P.S Here is our list of athletes for the event including those whom have simply been swimming with the team. Their profiles and pictures can be seen at
  1. Gabe Alves
  2. Michelle Newsome
  3. Jane Day
  4. Kathryn Granheim
  5. Glen Blackwell
  6. Melinda Brand
  7. Melissa Cundy
  8. Helen Cuthbert
  9. Mike Gee
  10. Chris Murphy
  11. Ian Murray
  12. Mary Tennant
  13. Lisa Palmer (bike discipline for team)
  14. Karen Wynne
  15. Judi Clemie (run discipline for team)
  16. Michelle Wilson (swim discipline for team)
  17. Mike Schumann (bike discipline for team)
  18. Zane Randall
  19. Mark Rayner
  20. Paul Williams
  21. Sandy Burt
  22. Matt Biddle
  23. Greg Doucas
  24. Andrew Hunt (swim discipline for team)
  25. Andrew Graham
  26. Trevor Magee
  27. Carl Andrews
  28. Caitlin Hunt
  29. Janet Musker
  30. Clint Doak
  31. Andrew Menschelyi
  32. Rob Buckle (bike discipline for team)
  33. James Millen (run discipline for team)
  34. Jo Swallow (swim discipline for team)
  35. Joe Kierath (bike discipline for team)
Paul Newsome
Swim Smooth & The TEAM CORE &
+ 61 (0) 431 540 980
Follow the Blog at

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

How will I know if my race was good? Plus training this week!

Dear All
Well, we're now just 10 days away from the 2008 Busselton Half Ironman and at this point you will probably be having mixed feelings about the race. We spoke last week about 10 simple ways you can focus on keeping a positive mind and outlook during the race and in the final few days, but what about those 2 all-important words - goal setting? What do you expect to achieve from this race?
The group is nicely split between those who have already completed one or more Half Ironman events (including Busselton) and those who are doing it for their first time. For those new to this race distance the absolute most important goal is simply to finish and to have enjoyed the process of getting to that finish line. You should not put any other pressure on yourself other than that. Most people (to be fair), do just this at their first race. As such, its not at all unusual to find that their first outing at these longer races often turns out to be their fastest (especially over attempts 2 and 3 or until suitable experience is developed to race more efficiently). The common denominator here is nothing more than a relaxed approach and the desire to simply finish.
But what if you're on the other side of the fence? More importantly, what if you raced your first Half Ironman last year down in Busselton? Without doubt, the conditions down at the race last year were the best on record. I vividly remember back to 2003 when super-star triathlete Stephan Kolm rode a course record on the bike discipline to average just over 40km/h. Just 4 years later, over 50 of the competitors last year averaged over 40km/h!!! This was a staggering result and highlighted just how amazingly quick the race was for everyone last year. Personal Best times were smashed left, right and centre and even by those who didn't consider themselves that fit! The concern this year, is that those who have no prior experience of the event other than 2007's race, will look to gauge their improvements purely on whether they actually race faster than last year. If its a tough race in 10 days time (and it could quite easily be - just look at this morning's weather!), those who have this goal will be nothing less than devastated if they do not race quicker. Bare in mind that the average "life-span" of an adult age-group triathlete is just 2 to 3 years (according to membership records) and it's quite easy to see how many people become disillusioned and are lost to this great sport after such a scenario. Don't let this be you!
Here's my top tips for ensuring you set your goals accordingly on race day and pace yourself efficiently:
  1. Do not base your perception of success on finish time alone. It could quite easily be argued that those who raced in 2006 and then proceeded to race much quicker in 2007, actually had a better race in 2006 - just that the conditions weren't as good that year. Of the 3 disciplines most affected by the conditions, the bike is without doubt the one that you have to watch when comparing average speed etc. If you really must compare times, make them on the swim and run sections and be a little more subjective with your bike judgement.
  2. Because of the above, its very hard to set target times or paces as we simply do not know what the conditions will be like. If you have a goal of holding 35km/h on the bike but then after the first lap realise that despite being sat in the right intensity zone you are actually only averaging 32km/h, you're going to become despondent and potentially despair at your performance. This is not very positive, is it?! Nowadays, I will only ever set goals like this with athletes who are using a power-meter on the bike or footpod on the run - these two pieces of technology allow us to set appropriate wattage and pace zones for the athlete irrespective of the weather conditions. As such, this technology is a fantastic innovation and worthy of your future consideration.
  3. We have spent 15 weeks working to increase your awareness of what Half Ironman "pace" feels like through subjective measures like perceived exertion (i.e. 7 out of 10) and through objective measures like swim and run speed or average power on the bike (if you have that technology). Remember that heart rate is a good gauge of your intensity (especially if you don't own a power meter), but that your heart rate is only a response to the workload you are putting out. Heart rate can also be quite variable with things like heat, dehydration and even race anxiety and as such is really only another tool for addressing your relative intensity rather than the total solution. You have done multiple long brick sessions in the last few months and as such should have a pretty good grasp on what the intensity feels like to race...and remember, if you feel like you're going too hard - you probably are!
  4. Rather than looking at your actual finish time as an "outcome of performance" you may be better off looking at where you place in your respective age-group compared to years gone by. Again this can be flawed by the fact that you don't really know how well your competitors have prepared for this race but this may be a better gauge, especially if you pick a broader "sample group" of say 5 to 10 athletes in your age-group who you have competed against previously.
  5. In the days now leading up to the race, have a go at these relaxation and mental imagery tips to help get your midn in tune with your body.
  6. And, at the end of the day, if you're confident in yourself and your training (and you have every right to be), all you now need do is go out there and give 100% (or should that be 7 out of 10?! ;-)) and know that "all's you can do, is all's you can do!"
"It's the taper period and yet I feel like poo!"
The final thing to stress at this stage is that you're probably feeling physically quite indifferent at this stage in the game. Some people immediately feel great in the taper period - others can feel pretty crummy. If you are the latter, try not to panic and realise that your body is simply going through a process of adaptation. So long as you keep yourself healthy in these last 10 days, keep hydrated and plenty of sleep, you'll come good!

Training this week:
Thursday AM - swim as usual at CCGS at 6am and 2nd swim at Claremont at 9.30am. PM - run at McGilvray - some short "sharp" intervals to give you a boost!
Friday AM - Anzaz Day 1500m Handicap Swim. Meet at Cottesloe Beach at 7.30am for a 7.45am start. We'll be doing a handicap "race" down to North Cott and back as per previous years. Lots of fun and a big Anzac cookie to be won for the first across the line. Bring your mates - this will be fun! No charge.
Saturday AM - brick session. Meet at Cottesloe Beach at the slightly later time of 7.00am. We'll be doing a 500m swim + 30km bike (including chance to practice a bidon exchange - very important!) + 4km run.
Sunday PM - rest day but details of a special BBQ to follow in seperate email!
Paul Newsome
Swim Smooth & Kirby Swim
+ 61 (0) 431 540 980
Follow the Blog at

Sunday, April 20, 2008

A fantastic weekend Boot Camp on Rottnest Island!

Dear All
Well, despite the ominous looking weather on Friday night and quite possibly the roughest crossing this little "Rottnest Camper" has ever made, the sun eventually shone on our Rottnest Island Boot Camp this weekend gone (thanks no doubt to Mary's prayers to the Sun Gods!). Please see attached photo.
We arrived on Friday evening to heavy wind and rain and to find out that Adam's sleeping bag had gone missing before we even started! The poor chap had to rely upon the blankets at the Kingstown Barracks which leave something to be desired on the cleanliness front. Luckily he suffered no rashes or strange marks on his skin...well, not yet!!!
Friday night was spent bonding at the Quokka Arms and discussing the weekends activities. Chris advised us all to steer well clear of the Pizzas and in doing so we all managed to have a nice meal and a bit of a chin-wag.
We were up early on Saturday morning after a heavy night's sleep with surprisingly no snoring from anyone...even Rob! After a light breakfast in the Mess Hall where Paul recounted his dream from the previous night of being evicted from the island for jumping up and running across the kitchen tables and spilling tea over everyone (apparently due to being excited that the Boot Camp was going so well?!), we hit the water in front of the Barracks. The first leg of the brick session was an 800m swim which saw the swimmers heading out with the swell pushing them along easily, but returning with quite a tough surface chop. Rob led the group out closely followed by Carl and Michelle. A tight group including Caitlin, Gabe, Chris and Helen tried to draft together to chase down Mel with Mary also making light work of the head-on chop just behind.
Little did the group know that Paul had arranged for Adam to sneak back to the dorm to let everyone's tyres down! Upon retuning to the dorm everyone was instructed to be out at the front of the dorm within 10 minutes, changed and ready to go, to which everyone exclaimed "easy!!". Once the crew realised that their tyres were flat, they were all instructed to not only re-inflate the tyre but actually change the inner-tube as well! Chris would have been the first finished had he not tried to inflate his tyre to 300psi and in doing so blew it to "kingdom-come"; as such, Helen (cool, calm and collected), took the title and made everyone green with envy. Once everyone was finally ready and had forgiven Paul for his devious ways, the crew hit the cycle ride of 50km around the island 2.5 times. Mary and Michelle led the team around the first lap to reliably show everyone the route. Unfortunately, no-one seemed to listen (including Michelle herself!) as the ride eventually turned into the veritable "Randonnee d'Rottnest" with Paul and Adam working hard to predict where the next cyclist would appear from!
Following the bike, the guys and girls hit the run and completed a ~9km loop of the glorious Salmon Bay. On photograpy duties, Adam did his best to scare the islanders by posing as a dirty stalker "paparazzi" type, whereas Paul was looking more like a hobo, having to do without his "special shoes" due to bad blisters! Everyone had a really good run and showed that they were all ready for the Half Ironman in 2 weeks!
After a nice lunch at the Barracks and a bit of a snooze, the crew hit the water for a 2nd time to learn some new skills for openwater swimming. This included Paul's simple acronym of "Swimming S.A.D" - S = sighting, A = attitude & anxiety control, D = drafting. After several short demos by "Paul-I-used-to-be-good-at-this-type-of-thing-Newsome" everyone completed a series of tasks to address these aspects of their swimming, including Paul's infamous "whirly-whirly" turns which were a lot of fun.
Our annual "Taper Time Tapas" was conducted down at the Barracks over some fine champagne and nibbles. Athletes had the chance to sit Paul and Adam on the "Hot Seat" and run through a series of questions which they still sought to be clarified in the lead-up to the Half Ironman. This typically centred around nutrition, including discussion over the fact that the race will not be providing a carbohydrate drink, but just an electrolyte one. Paul had provided each athlete with a bottle of this fluid to try out during the bike leg of the brick session and the concensus was typically split 50-50 over those who liked it against those who found it too "gassy". Carl then kindly took the centre stage and provided all the athletes with a great run-down on the rules and regulations for the Half Ironman, paying particular attention to the drafting policy. This was a very valuable Q&A session and everyone agreed that Carl's input was very insightful.
After a nice dinner down at the Tea Rooms, we all transferred over to the pub at the Governer's Lodge for a little bit of karaoke...sadly, no-one participated, but then again when you have Rotto's answer for Elvis Presley on the mic, how can you expect to compete?!
Sunday morning started with a stunningly scenic run around the Salmon Bay area, the lighthouse and back through the salt lakes where the paparazzi were again waiting in the bushes! Despite being a little tired, everyone enjoyed the perfect conditions and the break from the usual "river run".
And then, just as we were leaving, the heavens opened again and soaked us all to the bone! A great piece of timing on Mary's behalf we think! Mary informs me that she's currently working on the Sun Gods for Busso in 2 weeks, so watch this space!
A big thankyou to all those who attended: Michelle, Carl, Mary, Mel, Caitlin, Gabe, Rob, Helen and Chris; as well as to Adam for all his help over the weekend and stunning photos from both days too!
We aim to show-case both our photos in a special DVD presentation during Monday (21st April) night's wind trainer session over at 22 Fairfield Street, Mount Hawthorn from 6pm. As we are now commencing our final run-in to the race, there will be no run session tomorrow morning and the wind trainer session will also be light AND enjoyable!
Please (everyone) could you confirm if you wish to attend the wind trainer session and book your place asap by return email!
Thanks, roll on the Half Ironman team!
Paul Newsome
Swim Smooth & Kirby Swim
+ 61 (0) 431 540 980
Follow the Blog at

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Half Ironman Entries close on Friday!

If you are planning on racing the 2008 Busselton Half Ironman and haven't already done so, be aware that entries close this Friday!
P.S For those whom have mentioned that they'll also be over at Rottnest this weekend, we'll be meeting out the front of the Barracks at 8am on Saturday for our brick session (swim, bike and run) at 4pm for our open water skills session, and at 7am on Sunday for our long run (all from the Barracks). We'll be dining at the Quokka Arms on the Friday night and at the Tea Rooms on Saturday night. Maybe see some more of you over there!

Monday, April 14, 2008

Nutrition and Mental Preparation

Dear All

Hope you had a great weekend - Saturday's Brick Session went really well and the athletes who attended appeared 'pumped' for the Busso HIM, now just under 3 weeks away!! Conditions in the ocean on Friday morning were also rather "lumpy", but as I said "it could be like that come race day" so we need to try to adhere to the old adage of "failing to prepare is preparing to fail".


This is another fairly long email, so if you have no interest in: 1) our nutrition notes and advice; 2) my decision to withdraw from the HIM; 3) Rottnest Boot Camp final details; 4) tips on "how not to lose your head on race day"; then by all means hit delete!

Nutrition Notes:

As discussed, please find attached Nic Holme's notes on nutrition for pre / during and post-race from our seminar 10 days ago. Also attached is some advice from Sports Dietiticians Australia which Nic has kindly resourced for us to compliment her notes for anyone who didn't make the seminar. Nic has also generously offered to field any questions via email ( Thanks Nic!

No race for Paul:

Unfortunately I'll again be off my bike (and run) this week owing to my hip injury which just doesn't seem to be getting any better. Its a tendonopathy of the TFL (Tensor Fascia Latae muscle) apparently, which is similar to ITB friction syndrome in its location and stubbornness to heal. I blame a change in bike set-up, a subsequent hard ride followed by a hard run a couple of days later...all of which was about 6 weeks ago now. I will however be down to all the sessions as usual, just that I'll be accompanying you on my scooter or in my "moon boot" walking shoes (!! In the short-term this means that I have made the decision to withdraw from the Busselton Half Ironman on the 3rd May and concentrate on improving my posture / imbalances. I made a similar decision to this in 2005 and doing so made one of the best decisions in my coaching life. Missing the race personally in 2005 allowed me to focus and channel all my energy into those who were training for the race under my supervision and allowed me to support everyone on race day. As such (together with my co-coach and photo buddy, Adam) we'll be there to make sure that each and everyone of you makes it across that finish line and with a big smile of accomplishment on your face too! Whilst disappointed, I am glad to have this opportunity and look forward to selecting another race to build-up for over the winter.

Rottnest Boot Camp:

A reminder that we will be meeting at 5.30pm at the C-Shed terminal in Fremantle on Friday 18th April for our 2-night stop-over to Rottnest Island for our annual Boot Camp. We have 12 people heading over and it promises to be a lot of fun! Here's what you need to remember to bring:
  • Bike and plastic sheet / blanket for covering your bike (where necessary).
  • Bike lock - essential if you will be staying till 2.30pm on Sunday.
  • Swim, bike and run gear (remember to pack warm gear as it may be a little chilly!).
  • Extra spending money for meals out.
  • Some smart / casual gear for our 2 evenings out.
  • Sleeping Bag
  • Usual tolieteries etc (the bathrooms are single-sex, but communal in nature).
  • A sense of humour!
For those unable to attend but training up for the Half Ironman, you should look to get in a shortened version of Saturday's session (i.e. 1000m swim, 50km ride and an 8km run including swift transitions) and can then either do the 80min run (that the group will do on Sunday morning) on Sunday or choose to do this on Monday (as normal). There will be no formal run session next Monday morning owing to the fact that those who did the Boot Camp will be resting.

How not to "lose-your-head" when racing in 3 weeks time!

Probably one of your biggest and best assets as an endurance triathlete is not your heart, legs or lungs, but your mind. Everyone can train this aspect of their race preparation (you do it sub-conciously with every session you motivate yourself to complete), and this is something we'll discuss over on Rottnest Island next weekend as part of our scheduled "team-talks" (this will be noted for those who cannot attend). Many of you racing this time around are doing so for the first time and will at this stage begin to potentially get quite nervous about the task ahead. This is perfectly normal. How we respond to this anxiety is what will determine what happens on race day. Like I mentioned last week we're also at that stage in the program (the "peak") where a lot of training has been completed and the body is now ready to rest and adapt leading into the event. This residual fatigue can play funny games with your mind and increase that feeling of apprehension and self-doubt. As we start to taper-down, this fatigue will start to diminish, but the anxiety may linger on. Here's my Top 10 Tips to beat those Taper-time "Blues" and look positively ahead to a good race:
  1. Have confidence in the training that you have completed so far. For many of you this will be more than you've ever done before, so give yourself a little pat on your back and appreciate your own efforts to have made it this far.
  2. Stay in the "now" - there's a great movie out now starring Nick Nolte called "The Peaceful Warrior" which I urge you to watch. It talks about staying in the "here and now" and not worrying about what has happened in the past or what will be the ultimate outcome of the race, but aim to give 110% at what you are currently doing...whether that be powering through the water, driving those legs through on the bike, or running as swift as a gazelle on the run! Give it a try, you'll find it works very, very well.
  3. Don't make any radical changes - we normally say this about your bike-set-up or nutrition, but the same applies to your mental focus. How often are you too nervous to do one of our brick sessions or one of the harder swim sets? Very rarely. How different are these race-specific sets to the race? Not very different at all. Our perceptions are that races are "big" and that we have to out-perform ourselves...but you've been out-performing yourself for the last 14 weeks, so why do anything different now!
  4. "PMA Paul - Postive Mental Attitude!" - thats what my Mum always used to say! Staying focussed and positive is your number 1 ally come race day. How do you do this? Even if you feel crap, tell yourself you feel good or that you'll soon start to feel good. Those who say this is "a load of old balogne" simply gave up on feeling good before they had chance to "come good". You won't feel great all day...the key is to focus on those positive times and use them to "ride through" the times when you feel less good.
  5. Break it down. Every Monday morning I've had you doing the Galloway run-walk method..and for good reason! Usually in any group that I coach 2 or 3 people will say "this is a load of rubbish - I'm not doing the race to walk - I'm doing it to run and run it fast!". Good luck to them - make sure you remind them of that when they're walking the last 4km of the run and you go whizzing by having done your run-walk diligently from the start!! Besides the physiological benefits of this method for endurance events (less load on the legs, increased chance to hydrate / fuel-up during your walk breaks etc), the real true benefit is in the way this method allows you to break the run down into more (psychologically) manageable chunks. We've been doing run for 9 mins + walk for 1 mins in training. At the race you may find it more convenient to run to each aid station and then walk through them (~2km apart)...this process starts from aid station # 1 - not just when you start to "blow"! Trust me, I've had guys run sub 1h30 half marathons off the bike with this method when their equally-able team-mates have crashed and burned two thirds into the run and come home with disappointing (for their level) 1h45+ runs. All it takes is CONTROL - mental control to allow yourself to walk, knowing that you'll be stronger and still moving at the same speed come the latter half of the race.
  6. Pace it out! If it feels "too hard" it probably is. This event is going to take you between 4h30 and 6h00+ - its not a sprint event, its a very aerobic one! Cruise the swim, feel steady and controlled on the bike (the 6 to 7 out of 10 perceived exertion we've been working on) and then tap those run "intervals" out on the run course as explained above. Pushing too hard and then realising you've blown and in for a long day at "the office" can be devastating for even the strongest-willed athletes. There is no better feeling than hitting that run knowing you've still got juice in the legs...but even then, don't blow it too soon!
  7. We all get "stressed" sometimes. Understand and accept that for training to have been effective we needed (need) to have periods of "over-load" followed by periods of rest and recovery. Its the recovery periods that allow your body to adapt and grow stronger...miss these crucial stages in your preparation and you're on a one-way road to "over-training's-ville". Don't forget that the stress your body goes through in any training program is not just "training stress", but work / family / social such, if you're having a tough time in any of those areas right now on top of what has been a heavy training period, you're going to really feel it! Thats OK, you just need to accept it and ease-off on the throttle a little.
  8. Remember that your number 1 reason to do this type of event is for fun and the sense of satisfaction it will give you to complete it. No one ever said it was going to be easy! You're in the minority of people who even have the gusto to take on such a challenge and therefore you can be proud in what you have a achieved and will achieve on race day. DO IT BECAUSE YOU LOVE IT...AND YES, YOU DO LOVE THAT "PAIN" EVEN IN A FUNNY WAY!
  9. Just getting to the start line is a huge effort in itself and this journey is something to be savoured. I personally haven't completed that journey this time...but you will. Know that all the hard work has pretty much been done already...if you've got this far, the race-part is easy (well, kind of!) and something that should be enjoyed - a bit like a fine wine!
  10. Don't under-estimate the power of support and encouragement! The last tip is the most important. We've trained as a group for this event and everyone has supported each other as we've gone along. That is a great atmosphere within which to train. Even then though, with 25 other like-minded souls aound you doing the same thing, there have been times during training when you probably felt very alone and wished that the guy on the mountain bike with fat knobbly tyres who just sped past you as you grovelled along having run out of energy, would have stopped and given you some encouragement! Imagine then what it will feel like down at Busselton with a good 40 times more people on the same course as you and with at least the same number again on the sidelines cheering you on. Soak that up and you'll know about it! You're legs will feel like pistons and your heart will surge like electricity (just keep it at 75% mind!). Do not under-estimate the power of this support. All you now have to do is get yourself to that start-line willing and motivated to do your best - it really is that simple!
Remember guys "we're not racing for sheep stations" here...the only pressure that you feel is the pressure you put on yourself. I'm personally terrible for this - but in my old age I'm starting to realise and acknowledge this! After a bad race many people say that they felt uncomfortable with so many people watching and "expecting things from them" (especially friends, family and loved ones). If this were "Little League Baseball" then maybe fair enough, but its not, its all about you and your goal to make this race something special and something worth enjoying. All I expect from you is to give it your best shot and to have a smile on your face when you pass my camera. All's you can do on race day, is all's you can do! The only thing anyone expects from you is to enjoy yourself and have fun, and if you think thats "a bit soft" then you totally under-estimate the power of enjoyment on your overall race approach!

See you tonight...if you've read all this by then!


Thursday, April 10, 2008

Friday & Saturday and a bit about next week...

Dear All
Well its getting close...the Busselton Half Ironman, that is!
Its been a funny couple of weeks with various people away with work or holidays, those who caught the dreaded "lurgy" and the couple of you who have had little niggles here and there.
For those training for their first ever Half Ironman, hopefully you'll now appreciate that the actual training part of the program is the "easy part", its the "injury / illness / work / family / social balance" that is the "hard part". You could say that training adds to the stresses of everyday life and for that reason, the thought of training for a Half Ironman is just too much for many to comprehend. However, taking on this challenge and getting to the finish line is not just about what happens on the day, but the journey you took to get there. That journey is something you should be proud to be taking right now!!
At this point in the program, immediately before we start to taper down, you will typically feel at your most "stressed" or fatigued. When you train, the training process builds fitness (gradually) and fatigue (quickly), balancing these two is the key to a successful taper. Start to taper too soon and you start to lose too much fitness, taper too late and there's too much residual fatigue left over, leaving you 'flat' come race day. There's a really great article at (think I've shown you all this before?) which looks at how and why its important to balance this fitness / fatigue 'equation' to provide optimal form come race day.
So, with all this in mind, it may please you to know, that this weekend will be our last long brick session as we head down into a 3 week taper-program!! We're going to split this up as such for the next 3 weeks:
1) NEXT WEEK = a moderate week of training with no really long sessions but maintenance of intensity, culminating with the Rottnest Boot Camp on the 18-20 April.
2) FOLLOWING WEEK = the taper 'proper' commences, with a marked drop in volume but maintenance of intensity.
3) RACE WEEK = a very steady week with a couple of little "pick-me-ups" and focus on good quality of sleep + nutrition + hydration + positive mental attitude!!
Here's the next few days then:
Tonight = either the last 2 hour long run for those who didn't do it on Monday, or the 5,4,3,2,1km intervals as per the program. Both will be long but the advantage of having me "barking at you" if you're not pacing correctly should be well worthwhile!!!
Friday = meet at Cottesloe Beach at 6.30am for an open water session focusing on swimming straight and paired-drafting skills.
Saturday = meet at Cottesloe Beach at 6.30am for a brick session comprising 1000m swim + 60km bike + 10km run
Sunday = rest day
Monday = 60 mins run + spin session at the Sweat Shack in the evening
NB. There is an error in the program for Sunday 20th April stipluating a 2hr run...this will actually be an 80 minute run.
See you out there!
Paul Newsome
Swim Smooth & Kirby Swim
+ 61 (0) 431 540 980
Follow the Blog at

Monday, April 7, 2008

Weekend's Results and Nutrition Notes

Dear All
Well it was a weekend of wild weather up here in (sunny) Perth! The brick session was rained-off for the first time ever and we took a group decision to instead complete the session in the infamous "Sweat Shack" - yes, all 2h30 of it on the wind trainers and then 60 mins of running in the pouring rain! It was tough but everyone made it and funnily enough, appeared to enjoy themselves too!
Nutrition Seminar:
Notes from the nutrition seminar will be available in due course. I'd just like to extend my sincere thanks to Nicola Holmes for running the seminar on friday night and for providing us with a superb insight into what nutrition is required to see us through our race.
Race Results:
So, it was a big weekend of racing with athletes from the team competing at the Australian Ironman Championships in Port MacQuarie, the Point Walter Olympic Distance Triathon in Perth, The Bridges Asics 10km Fun-run, The British Duathlon Championships in (snowy) Swindon, and the UCC BHAA 10Km running race in Ireland.
Ironman Australia:
Janet Musker, Clint Doak and Andrew Menschelyi travelled over to Queensland to complete their 2nd, 3rd and 2nd (respectively) Ironman events at the National Championships. After a double-peak program covering some 26 weeks of consistent training, the guys were ready to race:
  • After a very comfortable "smooth" swim which bettered last year's performance by 30 seconds, Janet went on to knock off 14 minutes off last year's bike split and a further 10 minutes off last year's run split to give her a new P.B time of 12h25. Janet also ended up placing 9th in her age-group which is a simply fantastic result at a National Championships! Consistency in training = results! Well done!
  • This was Clint's 3rd Ironman with # 1 being completed in 11h36 (IMOZ '06), # 2 in 11.01 (IMWA '06). Clint went on to record a new personal best on what is now a much harder Port Macquarie Ironman course of 10h56. What was particularly impressive was that Clint managed to P.B even after a puncture on the bike which cost him over 10 minutes!! The ability to keep your focus like this after 150km of hard, hilly riding, is a testament to this young athlete's tenacity!
  • Whilst Andrew only had a shorter lead-up to this event than both Janet and Clint, he did successfully complete the distance in 12h32 and whilst not as fast as his IMWA outing in 2006 (12h19), posted P.B times for the swim and (we believe) run disciplines. One of the big steps between HIM and IM racing is the strength endurance required for the bike leg. With a shorter lead-up time this makes things tricky, so to get through the event and then run faster than his previous best marathon time is pretty good going in my book! Well done that man!
I'm sure there will be more stories that emerge from this event in due course and it is hoped that we'll have an evening to celebrate these athlete's achievements in the next few weeks once back in Perth. Janet excitedly left a message on my phone last night saying that she had just spoken to Chrissie Wellington (World Ironman Champion) who commented that the new Port Mac course is even harder than Hawaii...and if you know how hard that is, you'll be impressed!
Point Walter Triathlon:
Early reports from Ian, Jane and Trevor suggest that whilst the course was still a little slick from the evening's rainfall, that the race went quite well. Ian reports a personal best on this couse of over 5 minutes (nice job!) with Jane equalling her time last year but "feeling comfortable" and "strong on the run". Trevor got through the event despite a niggle to his achilles which we now need to keep a good eye on over the next few days!
The Bridges Asics 10km Fun-run:
Helen Cuthbert was in action despite an evening of pizza-loading the night before (with the coach it has to be said! ;-)) and recorded a comfortable sub-49 minute 10km performance. Well done Helen!
Swindon Duathlon:
After her impressive Bath Half Marathon race a few weeks ago, Georgia Wood was mixing it up at the British Duathlon Championships. Over a testing course which saw the athletes trudging through snow and slush (even in April!), Georgia forged ahead to finish 9th female overall and 4th place in her age-group with a very quick 36.58 first 10km run split! Nice job. Well done that girl!
96 4 48 Georgia Wood Bath Amphibians F E 00:36:58 61 01:27:40 127 00:19:25 43 02:24:03
UCC BHAA 10km:
Over in Ireland, Tony O'Grady set a new 10km P.B with a superb time of 35.07. Well done Tony! Training is obviously going (very) well!
Paul Newsome
Swim Smooth & Kirby Swim
+ 61 (0) 431 540 980
Follow the Blog at

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Thursday to Monday Details

Hi All
Just a few reminders:
  • Run tonight at McGilvray Oval. 6pm meet and warm-up for a 6.15pm start.
  • Swim tomorrow morning at Cottesloe. Wetsuits recommended. 6.30am meet & start ~6.40am. Out & back continuous swim.
  • Friday evening 7pm - 22 Fairlfield Street, Mount Hawthorn for Nutrition Talk (bring a chair if you can as there'll be ~20 people there).
  • Saturday brick session. 6.20am meet for a 6.30am start at the Dodgy Dunnies. 3hr ride + 1hr run. Come prepared with adequate nutrition.
  • Sunday - Point Walter race for those doing it. Yes you'll be tired if having done the brick session yesterday. This is not a priority race. Then why do it? Its an excellent chance to run through swim, bike & run and pace as though your were doing the HIM.
  • Monday - those who raced will do a shorter run on Monday morning and do the long run on Thursday. Still meet at 6am at UWA carpark.
  • Monday evening - cycling in the Sweat Shack.
Paul Newsome
Swim Smooth & Kirby Swim
+ 61 (0) 431 540 980
Follow the Blog at