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Blood Flow Restriction Training (BFR-T): The greatest bio hack of our time

Not to be confused with occlusion training (which cuts off blood flow to the limb), BFR-T is an exercise modality that manipulates the bodies circulatory system combined with no load/low load exercise. This ultimately leads to effects similar to high intensity strength training. “Say what?...”

 

It’s simple but true and proven effective over decades of research. BFRT benefits include increased strength, muscle hypertrophy & hyperplasia, increased anabolic hormones (IGF-1), increased myogenic stem cell proliferation, increased muscle fiber recruitment, increased protein synthesis, improved cardiovascular endurance, improved power and to top it all off, you experience all these benefits with little to no muscle damage. All these benefits and more have made BFRT a “Must Have” for athletes and fitness guru’s alike.

 

Sounds great so far, but getting ahead with new technologies can be tricky. You know that BFRT works, but what do we need to know to get started? How do we know what BFR methods are legit and which ones can be harmful? Don’t worry, we are here to help! Our motto here at RP is “Primum No Sincere” which simply put means “First, do no harm.” We have done the research, and we want to share a few Do’s & Don’ts with you so you can safely and effectively boost your performance through BFRT.

 

Watch out for Don’ts and major “No No’s” of BFRT!

01. Don’t Exceed 15 minutes of upper body training or 20 minutes of lower body training.

That's a No no! You don’t need to overdo it. BFRT is meant to be short & sweet. Why overload your body when BFRT was designed to simplify the process of achieving the results similar to high intensity strength training. (Stay tuned for the top 3 starter exercises of BFRT)

 

02. Definitely don’t lift heavy weight while doing BFRT.

 

You don’t need to lift heavy weight to feel the effects of an awesome BFR workout. No no! That’s Naughty!!

 

03. Absolutely don’t occlude your bloodflow.

Come on now! That is a huge No No! Serious complications can occur if one occludes the arterial inflow for a period of time. Consider heart tissue for example, where in less than 5 minutes of ischemia (occlusion), the tissue can die or be severely damaged.

 

 

Now we know what our Don’ts are, what are the Do’s of BFRT?

01. Do check your capillary refill time

You don’t need fancy gear to know if you are occluding blood flow. The symptoms are obvious. At no point during BFR should you feel dizzy or lightheaded. If you are, then stop training immediately. Don’t worry, it’s super easy to check even before those obvious symptoms occur by frequently checking capillary refill time. Do a quick test now. Press on the lower left side of your palm (under the pinky finger). You will notice that your skin appears lighter for a moment, then immediately fades back into its natural color. Capillary refill time is the amount of time it takes for your skin to return to its natural state and should not exceed 3 seconds. To check arm Capillary refill time, press the lower left side of the palm. To check leg Capillary refill time, press top of the foot or bottom if you are darker skinned.

 

02. Do use proper band placement

Arm: Place band around arm just below deltoid head (do not place too high).

Leg: As high up on the leg as you can place the bands.

 

03. Definitely follow the 3 T’s of muscle failure

Muscle failure is that point where you just can’t push anymore. There are 3 “tell all” signs that you have fought the good fight, but your muscles can do no more. Usually, it would take some intensive exercise to get there, but with BFRT it only takes simple exercises to feel the 3 T’s of muscle failure.

Tolerance – User won’t be able to complete repetitions

Technical – User will begin to cheat the form of the specific exercise

Tempo – User’s tempo will begin to lag and become slow.

 

04. Absolutely do use BFRT devices that were intended & engineered for BFRT

Don’t try to repurpose a device that was not intended for BFRT. BFRT devices will have elasticity that yields to your muscle contractions. Lessoning risk of occlusion. They are also created to give you full range of motion while training without being tethered to a machine allowing you the option to do some sport specific training (i.e. kicking around a soccer ball, shadow boxing, or other sport simple exercises). Devices designed for BFRT will be relatively narrow, thus allowing a broader therapeutic window that is proven both safe & effective.

 

 

 

Trying to find time to squeeze a workout into a busy schedule? BFRT is designed for you. Can’t use weight during the recovery of an injury but still want to keep your muscles in check? BFRT was designed for you. Want to get the goodies of high intensity strength training but not the joint & muscle damage, you guessed it, BFRT was designed for you! To learn more or to get your BFR on, call today! 855.732.7867

 

See Science & Studies section of KAATSU & (B)Strong for article references 

 

Throw Back Thursday: Do you Know how old Baseball REALLY is?

Hey Die Hard Sports Fan! Did you ever stop and think about how far some of your favorite sports actually date back to?

Did you know that the earliest known record of baseball traces back all the

way to 1344? Cantigas de Santa Maria, a French manuscript illustrates a game that

shows resemblances to baseball. The earliest known written reference traces back to

1744 in Little Pretty Pocket-Book a British publication written by John Newbery. New

England introduced America to two early forms of baseball games called cricket and

rounders. By the early 18th century, school kids across the United States were playing

forms of these games in their backyards and school grounds everywhere.

 

Modern baseball’s creation is credited to Alexander Joy Cartwright, a volunteer

firefighter and a bank clerk, who founded the New York Knickerbocker Baseball Club in

September of 1845. Cartwright developed a new set of rules that later formed modern

baseball and its foundation. This set of rules included a diamond-shaped

infield, foul lines and the three-strike rule. Cartwright can also be thanked for eliminating

the very dangerous rule of tagging runners out by throwing the baseball directly at them.

In 1846 the Knickerbockers played the first ever official game of baseball that started

the new American tradition.

Philosopher Morris Raphael Cohen described baseball as America’s national

religion. Baseball became increasingly competitive and profitable as it quickly turned

into a form of entertainment. This is attributed to players like Babe Ruth who was the

first great power hitter and known for permanently changing the nature of the game

along with the brilliant, sometimes violent, Ty Cobb recognized for his inside game

playing technique.

 

Baseball continues to be one of America’s favorite sports with game

attendance growing over 50% and revenue has nearly tripled for the past two decades. So, if you are a baseball fanatic, make sure to thank a New England ancestor for bringing historic forms of baseball to America.

 

Check out our Best seller for Baseball Players: RecoveryPump Half-Jacket

 

Sources: https://www.history.com/news/ask-history/who-invented-baseballhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baseball

Tips to keep your fitness goals on track all year!

 

Photo courtesy of Patrick Hendry

 

Be honest: How many times has this happened to you? You start the new year off by enthusiastically declaring a fitness resolution. For the first few weeks or months, you’re going strong and getting excited about all the goals you will reach by the end of the year.

 

After a while, however, you start to lose motivation. Perhaps you miss a workout or give into the temptation of a “cheat meal” when you should be dieting. Eventually, you’ve fallen so far off the fitness bandwagon that you just give up on your New Year’s resolution altogether.

 

We’ve all been guilty of losing motivation when it comes to our annual fitness goals. In fact, it’s so common that an estimated 80 percent of people give up on their New Year’s resolutions after just one month.

 

Luckily for you, there are ways that you can become the exception to that rule rather than just another statistic. Contrary to what you might believe, there are many ways to keep your fitness-related New Year’s resolutions throughout the year. You just have to find what works best for you.

 

Don’t Give Up.

Falling off the bandwagon or enjoying a “cheat” meal doesn’t mean you have to give up on your goal. Just remind yourself of the reasons why you became dedicated to this goal in the first place - then jump back on the bandwagon and get back on track!

 

Have a workout buddy.

This could be a coworker, a close friend, a relative, or even your spouse. If you feel your motivation slipping, you’ll have someone to hold you accountable for your daily workout. You could schedule times to meet in-person (or via Skype, if you live far away from each other) to work out together. You might meet up each week to try a different group class at your favorite local gym, from yoga to kickboxing.

 

If you are more competitive, you could even turn it into a friendly competition. Whoever loses the most weight at the end of the month enjoys a free meal courtesy of the other person. There are endless options when it comes to working out with friends.

 

Hire a fitness trainer or coach

If you’ve ever wondered whether hiring a personal trainer or health coach might be worth the money, science tells us it is. Research indicates that professional health coaches are able to boost their clients’ success rates and help them maintain their fitness and weight-loss goals.

 

If you’re struggling to stay motivated, there’s no reason to go it alone. Why not get a coach or trainer?

 

Workout with Fido

Bringing your pet into your workout routine can be another great way to stay motivated. There are many benefits to working out with your favorite four-legged friend. Dogs the most upbeat and energetic workout partners, requiring a certain amount of physical activity each day.

 

Perhaps this is why researchers found that Michigan dog owners are 34 percent more likely to get the recommended 150 minutes of exercise per week versus those who didn’t own a dog. Additionally, dog owners tend to outlive cat owners, possibly because all that dog walking is good for your heart.

 

Some creative ways to work out with your pet might include going for a walk, jog or run at a dog-friendly park, dog yoga; dog-friendly Stand Up Paddleboarding (SUP) or outdoor sports such as trail running and hiking.

 

Remember: You Can Do It!

We set fitness resolutions because we’re excited about them, dedicated to them or because we know we need them. If you’ve resolved to become fit and healthy, you undoubtedly want to succeed in achieving your goal. Good luck!

Are you forgetting one of the 4 key components of performance? That's Naughty!

Some athletes & fitness enthusiast might focus on nutrition, training & sleep, but what about Recovery? All these points are equally essential to keep you performing at the top of your game. If you don’t take the steps to properly recover, you may set yourself back or even worse, give yourself an injury.  Don't make that mistake...

Just use RecoveryPump, it’s easy. Step into your boots, put on your favorite show, kick back & relax while RecoveryPump does its work. RecoveryPump will help reduce any pain & swelling, increase your circulation, increase your joint mobility and improve your bodies healing of soft tissue & bones. Train Hard, Recovery Happy. 

Are you Naught or Nice?

Be nice to yourself and take advantage of 10% off all RecoveryPump products by using promo code Nicelist at checkout.


Using RecoveryPump is proven to:  

  • Reduce Pain & swelling caused by intense exercise  
  • Improve your body’s circulation which helps to speed up your bodies mechanism to remove waste & lactic acid build up.  
  • Increase Joint Mobility  
  • Improve Soft tissue & bone healing  
  • Accelerate Recovery  

 

Don't waste time getting back on your "A" game. Train hard, Recover Happy.

#TeamNater Races Across America

 

As a track sprinter on the velodrome, I am used to going 100% and doing everything I can to turn myself inside out. My typical efforts in training are between 20 and 40 seconds long and by the time I am done I often have a headache and a sudden urge to throw up. Pushing this hard did not come natural. To be able to push to this extent, it takes years of training and experience, and as the saying goes, "The stronger you get the more it hurts." So needless to say, I am a glutton for punishment… Maybe that's why I jumped on the opportunity to be a part of Race Across America 2017!

 

In the beginning of 2017, my brother James approached me to see if I'd be interested in joining the Oceanside Police Department team for Race Across America. Of course there was some slight hesitation, being a sprinter on the velodrome, but this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that I knew I needed to jump on. Since my training is typically done for races that are less than two minutes long, I needed to understand the strategy and how I would tweak my training to fit. Fortunately for me, I would be riding on an eight man team that is separated into two teams of four riders and put on a rotation. Only one rider rides at a time with the teams of four being on eight hour shift's. During your eight hour shift the four riders rotate who is on the bike every 15 minutes. Although compared to my typical racing, 15 minutes is a very long period, I knew that if done right I would be able to do what is needed to be successful. 

 

The total race distance is just over 3000 miles and the first team to the finish line wins. This means there is a rider on the road 24 hours a day until we reach the finish line. Being on an eight hour shift is nice because you get some rest, but really when all is said and done it only equals about 3 to 4 hours of sleep a day... Sometimes you may start your shift at 2 AM and then finish at 10 AM. That means you have to try to find some sleep in the middle of the day while being transported to the next starting location. Basically it is a sleep and logistical nightmare!

 

On June 17th, we rolled out of Oceanside California in pursuit of Annapolis Maryland. My team of four was on second rotation so we did the initial parade ride for the first few miles and then hopped in the van for a few hours to our starting point. I knew going into this that the riding would be difficult, but the most difficult portions would be the sleep and keeping my legs as fresh as possible. Fortunately for me, I had my new RP Lite system!

 

I had the opportunity to ride in almost every condition imaginable. The first few days through the deserts we did climbing at temperatures above 115° and had tailwinds at night that pushed me to 60 mph. During the rotational period of riding, it is a very strange rhythm. On the bike at 100% effort for 15 minutes until you exchange with the next rider and then get back into the van for 45 minutes. Sometimes in the van it is daytime and everybody is up and talking, and other times it is in the middle of the night and as soon as you get back into the van you fall straight to sleep for the next 45 minutes until it is your turn to race again.

 

It took me a few days to find my rhythm. While driving ahead to our next starting destinations I made sure to have my Recovery Pump boots on for at least an hour to freshen up my legs. Having a whole row to myself in the SUV made this a very comfortable experience. I think at one point I fell asleep with them on for over two hours! Come day four everything starts to go numb. The way you would be able to hurt your legs the first few days became more of a doll ache.

 

Once we got over the Rockies it was Time for some flat fast speeds! We ripped through the farmlands of America passing silos and tractors by the dozens. At this point I had figured out somewhat of a sleeping routine and could feel my energy and power on the bike climbing. Fortunately the temperatures had subsided a bit and the weather was nice. Although majority of the winds were at our back, there were a few instances that proved different. At one point, I was going all out as hard as I could in my aero position, and for my 15 minute interval my average speed was 16 mph… I've never experienced a head wind that literally felt like somebody was pushing me backwards. At times like these it was nice to be able to rely on teammates. When you get on the bike knowing that you're only there for 15 minutes it is easy to turn yourself inside out time after time. I can't even imagine the mindset that the solo riders have to complete this on their own.

 

As we came towards the end of the race, I became that much more reliant on getting in my Recovery Pump boots after each rotation. It always was amazing how the first few squeeze cycles almost felt painful because of how tight and fatigued my legs were. Then five minutes through I wish I was able to get even more pressure because it felt so good. Nothing like having the feeling of an hour massage while sitting in an SUV driving up the road. Along with my Recovery Pump boots I made sure to bring my foam roller. I have noticed that being able to incorporate back flexion is a huge advantage since I am constantly in a back extension position. 

 

Like with any good road trip, the closer you get to your destination the longer time seems to take. Going into our last day seemed like eternity. Starting off at 4am in pouring rain was an experience like I have never had. It was our last rotation and I was sure to turn myself inside out to make it my very best. Although we were not in the mountains, the terrain was extremely undulating. Quick steep short climbs with fun aggressive down hills. Nothing like passing a semi truck going 60 mph in a tucked position through a torrential down pour! Winding through the rural farmlands of Pennsylvania we got closer and closer to Annapolis. It was crazy to think how many experiences and emotions I had felt in those six days. It felt like an eternity, but overnight at the same time.

 

As my last few efforts came to an end I tried to be mindful about the experience I had just undergone. The emotional highs and lows on the bike battling with my own mindset to push as hard as possible. The disagreements with teammates and crew that turned into laughing and a deeper sense of comradery. It is amazing how much can be packed into six days and three hours of racing. 

 

We arrived in Annapolis and secured our third place position. With several what if's throughout the way and scenarios that could've definitely ended our race, we were happy to have finished as well as we did. It was an incredible experience that not only tested my physical strings on the bike, but my mental and emotional capacity is as an athlete as well.

 

Will I do it again? Never say never...

 

- Nate Koch, Professional Cyclists 

@teamnater 

 

THE BEST Compression Recovery Boots!

"I'm still in denial of the power of RP! This weekend I had my first 50k trail race. It was the worst mountain to pick as a first because it was 6k feet of elevation, crazy amounts of rocks and a heatwave of 109. By the 30k mark my legs felt thrashed, I was in sooooo much pain. I finished the race and was in even more pain. I didnt want to move. I hopped in the legs for 1.5hrs (watched a movie) and I literally felt new again. I went straight to a music festival afterwards. Unbelievable! Again, I'm still soo happy I made this purchase!

I ended up staying at a runner friends place and had her try them also after her race and she was in shock and is considering buying her own! Fingers crossed that she does. She didnt believe me at first :)

Anyways, I thought i'd share my story with you. I am such a happy customer with these legs so thank you. I'd still be in pain without them."

 

- Robert Herrera

@RobertHerrera3
---
2015 Official Hosting Reel
www.iamrobertherrera.com

Offseason Improvements - Triathlon Training

The North America triathlon offseason starts with the last Ironman of the year, Ironman Arizona, and ends with the kickoff of Oceanside 70.3 at the beginning of April. Of course, there are races you can go to around the world such as in Australia and New Zealand yet most athletes in North America are trying to recover after a long racing season. There are some athletes who take this offseason and relish in the time away from training. Others keep the motor running to come into the season without losing too much fitness; each method is up to the individual as far as how they want to spend their time and how their body reacts to inactivity versus continuous motion. One thing that we should all agree upon is if you want to keep improving on your Ironman journey to reach your goals, the offseason should be used to improve on inefficiencies in your training and racing.

At the end of the racing season, you need to evaluate your performance, coaches, consultants, nutrition, hydration, gear, technology, organizational skills, balance and determine where you could improve to shave precious time off your racing. This is what any athlete in any sport does when they have a little time off so that they can get themselves into a better position the next year. Lionel Messi does not sit on his couch when the soccer season is over; the free time that he has is spent improving on his already dominant game. In order to keep improving, you cannot rest on your laurels, even if you are one of the best in the world. Serena Williams, as she gets older, knows she has to train and compete smarter, not harder, so her offseason is spent working on new ways to get better which usually involves boosting her weaknesses.

In my ‘offseason’, I do like to keep the motor running. Exercise and training have always been a part of my life and it rolls on after Ironman Arizona is complete. Yes, it does not make sense to go for long tedious rides a week or two after the last race of the season yet I do continue to move the blood and swim, bike, run and strength train when the season comes to a close. It also is a habit to use my recovery tools like my Recovery Pump boots; when I go home to Ohio for the holidays, I always pack them and use at night when hanging with the family. I go to the local pool and run on the treadmill to keep the blood pumping.

For the offseason of 2016-2017, my goal was to keep strengthening my hamstring, which was a nagging problem in the 2016 racing year, and improve my running off the bike. As women racers continue to improve, you have to be that much stronger in all three disciplines. If the race directors will continue to launch the women so close to the pro and age group men, you have to become that much better to overcome all of these obstacles that these types of situations organically create; the reality is, this practice doesn’t look like it is changing anytime soon so you just can’t worry about interference from these conditions and you have to rise above it.

My offseason consisted of more rehab by utilizing muscle activation technique (MAT) to keep strengthening the hamstring region as well as a more intense running program, compliments of Sean Jefferson, to reaching for that elusive three hour marathon in a full Ironman race. It was important to work with Sean in effort to help me design training programs to focus my attention on this deficiency. I have never focused this much on the running aspect of the triathlon and my comfort was growing in this capacity; preparation and training breeds just that, comfort!  

My first race of the year was Ironman New Zealand in early March and I was ready to see if my offseason preparation could translate into race success. As everyone who has raced triathlon knows, nothing ever goes according to plan. My legs were ready and the muscle memory of the run preparation was there but my body just couldn’t deliver that fast run that I was prepared to do. For some reason, I didn’t have that 2nd gear yet these are the highs and lows of racing; not every time out you will have that magical race. The good thing is that the offseason work will not go away; it has been banked and I look forward to using this knowledge and training in future events. Until that time, all you can do is keep working hard, recovering, repeating and ride the waves!

 

- Meredith Brooks Kessler, @mbkessler

Maverick Multisport Team: An interview about Coaching and Ironman Training Tools

 

Bevin: On today's hot property interview, we're very happy to be able to welcome Chris Hutchens from Maverick Multisport Team to the show. Welcome to the show, Chris.

Chris Hutchens: Thanks Bevin. Appreciate it.

Bevin: We just spoke before the interview and we were talking about how our podcast of light has just been focusing a little bit on the professional ranks and how professionals make money. This being the upsurge in professional Troy teams. We've been talking about BMC recently in Bahrain. You're not quite on those guys' budget levels just yet, but you've been around for a while now. Where did the concept of Maverick Multisports stand?

Chris: Oh gosh. You want the 60-second version or the long version? Which do you want?

Bevin: The long version.

Chris: Long version. Okay. Well, a little backstory on me. I was actually an airline pilot for about five years. When my wife and I had our third child, I ended up leaving Delta to be a stay-at-home dad. After about a year, I got a little stir-crazy. As a former collegiate swimmer and active triathlete, I started in the fall of I guess 2012. Helping out some pros in the sport that were really struggling with getting sponsorships lined up. That's what I went to university for.

I have some experience after college in that market. I stepped in and said, "Hey you're doing this all wrong. [laughs] Let me help. Please let me help you. I don't want to see you banging your head against the wall any longer." I hopped in and I helped three pros that year. It was one of those things where I said, "Hey, I'm not too bad at this. I'm actually having some success at it." That was in 2013, was the first full year that I did that.

From that I jumped in. 2014 is when it really took off. That year I had five pros. I had Matt Hanson on the team. His first year as a professional triathlete, he won Ironman Chattanooga that year and obviously, he's gone on to win Ironman Texas. I think everybody for the most part probably knows who Matt is. I had Amber Ferreira on the team that year. She won Ironman Lake Placid and went to Kona.

That second year, it just went like a rocket ship, and all of a sudden, everybody knew at least who we were as an organization. It just took off. Then last year, well I guess in 2015, we had six pros and we spun off an age group component to give us some additional bandwidth. Last year, it continued to grow with seven pros and 20 age groupers and now here we are.

In 2017, we've signed five pros for 2017 and we've got 48 age group athletes, now that raise for us. It's grown quite a bit from five years ago when I just had three pros and now we've got 53 athletes under the Maverick banner I guess you can say. It's been a fun ride. It's one of those things you can look back and say it like, "Wow. I can't believe where we are." It's just one foot in front of the other.

Bevin: Interesting. Really, really interesting. Would you say that you started off as more of an agent and working with them as individuals? Did it actually get to a point where you started to attract brands to these individuals and thought, "If I can retain all these brands, we may as well create a banner and then bring individual pros under that banner." How did it go from three or four athletes into what is your own brand?

Chris: Actually the name Maverick came from -- I started coaching youth and junior draft legal athletes. Here in the area where I live, I live in Louisville, Kentucky which is home to the Kentucky Derby. I was looking for something that would reflect the area. So horses and maverick and that's where the name Maverick Multisport came around. I started working with these three pros under that same banner and the pro thing really took off. The coach that I was running the junior team with, she moved to Colorado.

At that point I made a decision to say, "Okay. As much as I love coaching the youth and juniors, I'm putting all my chips in with the pros." It was one of those things where I really see a huge advantage being able to go to a company and saying, "I'm bringing to the table five, six, seven professional athletes that are going to have a very uniform look to them. Everybody is on the same bikes, the same wheelsets, the same power meters, wetsuits, everything like that." It gives a very clean look. Obviously if you're a company and obviously you use Polar as an example because Wayne sets this up.

Bevin: Great friend of the show.

Chris: If Polar comes to me, they're obviously a lot -- it's a lot easier for them to activate a relationship with me as one person as opposed to saying, "Okay, Chris. We would much prefer to go out and just find five or six or seven pros on our own." Well that takes a lot more legwork on their end where they can just come to me and say like, "Boom." It's a one-stop shop.

All the sudden, they don't have to worry about the contracts. They don't have to worry about anything else that goes on behind the scenes. It's just basically like, "Chris, we want to work with you guys." You activate the relationship and supply all the content and manage everything on the backside. If I was a company, I think it will be a dream relationship.

Bevin: Did it start like that though? Did you look when you had your first couple of pros and you were looking at them as individuals? Did you immediately into the market with that concept already fully formed?

Chris: No. I just went into the market with I'm going to package everybody under one umbrella as opposed to try and say, "Okay I've got this athlete. What can you do for this athlete, this athlete, this athlete?" I said, "I have a collection of athletes. This is what I wanted to do with them. Can you support these athletes as a single unit?" Fortunately, we had a couple companies that signed on that very first year which allowed it to start that snowball effect.

If that wouldn't have happened then, obviously we probably wouldn't be sitting here. Things worked out that first year and we got some traction. I think once you get a couple big companies signed on board, then the chips just started to fall into place like, "Oh okay. Well, you're working with XYZ company already." That's a pretty reputable brand. You must be doing something right if you already have a relationship with them. It just seemed to work out.

Bevin: Now that you've been doing this for a little bit, what is the sponsorships based like for triathlon? It seems that the budgets are getting a little bit tighter. We've got provisional triathletes that I coach. We talk to professional triathletes who are up and coming in and entering this market. You've just signed a couple of professional triathletes. One who's just entering the 70.3 space coming out of ITU, Dan Wilson who we had on the show a few weeks ago. Do you think that these teams are where most of triathlon is going to end up if you are actually trying to enter in as one of those newer pros?

Chris: If you are new or still relatively -- you're trying to establish yourself in the market, I think that getting onto a team is really and truly the way to go because again not just from a corporate standpoint but from an athlete standpoint if you go to a team, you immediately walk into relationships with bike companies, wheel companies, nutrition companies. You instantly even as an athlete have just a spider webbing reach where -- and then it takes a lot of the pressure of having to develop all these relationships.

I think that's something that certainly you have to do down the road, but if you are like you said Dan Wilson 10 years' racing ITU, coming into 70.3 this year, I think it's a great way for him to segway into non-draft racing. He may be on the team for a year. He may be on the team for five years, who knows, but I think it's a great way for him to get his name out there and step into a situation where he's got a ton of bandwidth behind him; because with 48 age group athletes on the team, all those athletes are obviously going to be following Dan and Clayton and Leslie and John and Rhuidean, all the pros that are on the squad- -and helping to like and re-tweet and follow and just do all the things that go on to help build a brand for them online.

Bevin: When did you decide to deviate into the age group side of things? And I noted from your website that initially you're only looking for a dozen age group for the team, but it's obviously moved out since then because it's successful?

Chris: Yes. I think at the end of the day, this is a business. As a business, you have to look at "Okay, how are we positioning ourselves to make money?" If you go to an Ironman race, a challenge race, 98% of the people on the starting line are age group athletes. How do we tap into that market? How do we leverage that relationship? Best by engaging with the age group athletes as a brand. We started that two seasons ago with six. Last year we had 20 and now we're up to 48.

It allows us to -- as a brand also go to the companies that we've worked with and say -- "The buck doesn't just stop with the five pros that we've worked with. You're also able to tap into and have a trickle down effect with these age group athletes. It's a good relationship. I think it's a win-win-win for everybody. It's a win for the age group athletes. It's a win for the company. It's a win for Maverick as a brand. It's just like a circle. You've got to keep everything going around and you don't want to break the chain. As long as we continue to do that, then I think it continues to work.

Bevin: Okay. Triathletes are trying to make money out there.

Chris: Right.

Bevin: Maverick's is trying to make money. How does it all work in terms of a business model because you're not doing it -- most of us in triathlon are doing it for the love [laughs] including a lot of the pros, but how does the business model actually work, so it serves both the pros and makes a sustainable living for you as a director of the team?

Chris: It's definitely tough. I wouldn't say that anybody is really getting rich off of it. I think we're able to provide a solid level of support for athletes. I think that there's probably 25 or so men and 25 or so women something like that. Really like globally that are able to I would say like this is --

Bevin: Yes. Paying the bills.

Chris: I've been around long enough to know what most people want, what most people are making. Like you said Bevin, I think most people are doing it for the love of the sport. There certainly are people that are making good money doing it. I know that for a fact. I think that we're able obviously to provide a lot of things that would be difficult to go out on your own and get. I don't want to go into it too much because I don't want to get on it all completely. We support the athletes to a degree where they're able to be successful.

Bevin: Also to a point where you see yourself in the market because as I say some of those other brands obviously -- there's no prints giving you --

Chris: On our back pocket of course.

Bevin: And no property you magnate in Europe.

Chris: We're basically in a stage, maybe you'll lose, get a President elect and put him in a pocket or something like that.

Bevin: Get one who's fond of triathlon.

Chris: That's perfect.

Bevin: What's the long-term goal for the team then? Obviously, it's really well established now. It's been running for a longest period of time. It's in that sickened tier of teams but it's successful and you've got some great brands aligned with you. Your job would be to obviously continue to try to expand.

Chris: Yes. Just like any brand, I come to look at it just like you would at any product. How do we make this watch better? How do we make this bike better? How do we make Maverick multi-sport as a brand better. We did that by continuing to recruit better pro-athletes. We try to do that by creating better relationships with the companies we work with. We try to step up to what we're doing from just a content creation standpoint. Because at the end of the day, as maybe shallow as this may sound, all these athletes is just an extension of the marketing departments for these companies. That's what an athlete really has to recognize that.

You're not part of their production. You're not part of their -- maybe sometimes they're indeed, but you're not part of their shipping department, you're not part of their executive department, you are part of their marketing department. We have to find the best and the most creative ways to help these companies market the products that we represent, so that we can provide the best ROI for them. So that when we come back around to the next year to look at contracts, they'll say "Yes. Dollar for dollar you guys gave us the best bang for our buck of anybody that we work with." That's what I've pretty consistently heard across the board.

The only complaint I've ever had from anyone is like "Chris, you gave us too much stuff," [laughs] which is a good thing. I guess our goal is to continue just to grow. Obviously just like any sport, whether if you're playing American football, you want to go to the Super Bowl. If you're playing in the NBA, you want to go win an NBA championship. Or you want to win a World Series in baseball. I think for us as a brand, obviously we want to try to continue to chase championships. 70.3 World's get somebody top 10 in Kona. Obviously podium at Kona maybe in the next two or three years. It's one of those things, it takes some time and it takes proper athlete. It takes at the end of the day money. But I think it's possible. I think we're on our way.

Bevin: One of the things that we've just talked about is actually last week on the podcast is that -- And I've been privy to a couple of contract offers for some of the athletes, my professional athlete that I coaches who sign for a team. There seems to be some push back from some of the brands at the moment as to where the athletes rise. Do you find that the market is Ironman scene trick from a sponsorship perspective? From the brands that you're dealing with? It is about 70.3 Worlds or do you find that it's a little bit more broader than that and the events like in the past we've had Rev3 and we've obviously got challenged and Toughman Tri's trying to establish itself. Or do you feel some pressure from the industry that it has to be 70.3 and Ironman focused?

Chris: I think that obviously Ironman and Ironman 70.3 is -- that's top dog. It probably will continue to be that way for the foreseeable future. I think challenge is second there. Some of the other brands you mentioned Toughman and Rev3, they're great brands. We've got athletes to do those races, but I think that they still need to establish themselves a little bit more. They need to develop those brands. They need to get the following behind them. It's hard to compete with the brand where you got athletes; as soon as they finished the race, the next day are going to tattoo parlors to stamp.

Though you've got people that are so over-obsessed with Ironman, it's hard to get people to get that focus away. I think from an athlete's standpoint though, as far as companies that we work with, I think they prefer Ironman. I haven't really heard anybody say like "You have to do all Ironman races." I think at the end of the day, it's about how you -- if you go and win Challenge Rugby or whatever it may be, I think that at the end of the day, it's how you relay that information and how you take those results and repackage them and then obviously distribute it, and then just really activate that.

I would rather have somebody go and get third place at a race and we really blow the marketing out of the water and really create some buzz around that- -as opposed to go and have an athlete win a race. And then it's just crickets where nobody hears about it. That does nobody any good. I think it's [sic] really falls on the athlete's shoulders how you put a spin on the race result.

Bevin: This year you've got a few new athletes on the team. It's an exciting year for you because there's always going to be athletes who come and go. Say in Dan Wilson's case, his entry to 70.3 race has been actually pretty spectacular today. You've actually maybe signed up someone who could be quite a heavy hitter at 70.3 before the end of the season. Does that excite you with the people that you're working with this year?

Chris: Absolutely. Yes. Like you mentioned Dan, he transitioned after 10 years of ITU racing to 70.3 and goes and wins Noosa, and then -- the world's largest Olympic distance race. And then he follows it up with a win at the Challenge Shepp and Ironman 70.3 Western Sydney. He's into 2016 on fire. I'm excited to see what his -- how 2017 starts. I think as long as he stays healthy and just continues to do what he's been doing, I think he's going to be just fine.

And then, obviously, we brought on Clayton Fettell, another Aussie and he's had a great career over the past few years. Obviously, he's been to Kona and he's got his sight set on Kona this year. He just got married and had a little boy last year. So I think last year was probably pretty busy for him. From a personal standpoint, I think this year, the focus is going to be pretty lasered and dialed in. I expect great things from him this year as well.

Bevin: Well, it looks like -- You never know, Dan sneaks a 70.3 world title, all of a sudden Maverick Multisport is going to be spoken about in the same breath as BMC in Bahrain.

Chris: You never know. You never know. I wouldn't put it past him.

Bevin: No, I wouldn't put it past him either. Anyway, Chris -- Well. Thank you so much for taking some time out this afternoon to have a chat to us about Maverick Multisport. We'll definitely put the links up to your website and Facebook on our show notes. It's exciting to see the team expand and evolve, and we wish you the best of luck for the 2017 season.

Chris: Well, thank you, Bevin. I really appreciate the time. Thanks for having me on today.

- Interview brought to you by Fitter Radio (http://www.fitter.co.nz)  & Chris Hutchens, Maverick Multisport

Check out Maverick Multisports recovery tools: (http://www.rpsports.com/recoverypump-products)

 

Off-Season Tips

I get a lot of questions from people about what an off-season should look like. Off-seasoning is something I have seen done well and not so well by a big range of athletes over the years, and here are a few of my top dos and don'ts.

 

DO

  • Take a couple weeks at minimum away from a structured training plan.
  • Take at least a few days completely off of your legs if not off of any kind of training.
  • Give yourself some mental downtime--we do need some time in the year to not be hyper-focused on our power or paces on the garmin.
  • Use this time for fun training adventures and races of a different sort. Long point-to-point bike rides and trail ultra-marathons are some of my  kids' favorite off-season activities :)

DON'T

  • Completely disconnect from your coach.
  • Gain a stack of weight that you will spend the first chunk of your season trying to take off.
  • Take your completely-off days immediately following your big end-of-season race. Active recovery before your break is key.

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Hillary Biscay