Swim Goggles, What Things Do I Want to Consider?

Everyone is looking for different types of swimming gear. Whether it is swimming gear for exercising, kids playing in the pool, scuba diving or any of the other activities that come with swimming everyone eventually is looking for some type of swimming gear. One of the most common types is swim goggles. This is a common piece of swimming gear that everyone wants to help protect their eyes while in the water. Children, youth and adults love them just the same and find the necessity of them. When you are buying swim goggles it can be difficult to decide what type of swim goggle you need. There are hundreds of choices and they can range for one dollar to hundreds of dollars.

Let’s take a few look at a few things that you might want to consider when deciding what type of swim goggle to purchase:

1. First thing, is what the use of the swim goggles will be used for. If they are for children for fun then you might want to go with an inexpensive pair. If they are for professional competition then you might want to go with a more expensive, high end pair of swim goggles.

2. Now that you have decided what the use is for you will want to get goggles that have a press on fit. Without the putting the strap over your head do the goggles stay on your eyes.

3. A comfortable fit. Nothing is worse than have goggles that aren’t comfortable.

4. Good Construction. Will they hold together for more than one swimming experience?

5. UV Protection. Will they safeguard your eyes when they are used outside in a pool?

These are just a few tips to consider when looking for swimming goggles to add to your swimming gear.

Visibility Unlimited – Just 4 Swim ( is where you will find your full supply of swim products. Billings Farnsworth is a freelance writer.

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Posted by The Running Guy - August 15, 2009 at 1:01 am

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Beginner Triathlon Training – 5 Top Tips

Perhaps you are considering entering a triathlon competition. If you have never been a competitive athlete or involved much in endurance sports before now, you may need some tips on how to approach your triathlon training. Training right is very important to endurance sports like triathlons. Lack of good training leads to more than poor competitive performance: you can become injured or even make yourself sick.

What should beginners to the triathlon world keep in mind?

1) When you are first starting out, you have to pace yourself. Don’t try to prove to yourself, your spouse, your family, your dog, or anyone else that you “can do it”. If you don’t start off slowly and then gradually build up to both greater speed and longer workouts, you will only prove that you can make yourself too exhausted to be competitive on race day or, worse, that you know exactly how to injure yourself and keep yourself out of commission for weeks.

In a more extreme scenario, poor training could lead to something like a heart attack. Keep in mind–this is highly unlikely. But it is a real, if rare, possibility, and thus you have to take serious training seriously. Pace yourself and build up gradually.

2) Stretch well. Lack of stretching robs strength from your muscles. It robs flexibility from your movements. And, it can also lead to some very serious injury. Your stretching regimen should be involved and cover all of your muscle groups. Take your time with it and never take it lightly. It’s more important to stretch after your workouts than before, but ideally you should stretch at both times.

3) If you ever feel that you are too tired to workout as intensely as you planned, don’t. That doesn’t mean don’t push yourself to the limit–it does mean to KNOW your limits. You risk injury, burn out, and illness if you push yourself too hard. Listen carefully to your body as its energies ebb and flow. When you feel very strong, push yourself harder. But when you feel overly tired, take it easier.

4) In spite of what was said above, you do need to create a workout schedule in advance and stick to it as much as you can. This gives you a strong mental focus and makes you feel committed and energized. Only deviate from it in a marginal way and if your body is seriously telling you that you should not or cannot do what you planned for such and such a day. Also, readjust your schedule in relation to what you do that day so you stay consistent.

5) Plan your workouts right up till the day before the race with care. Include what you’ll eat, how far you’ll run or bike or swim, and everything else. If you’re a beginner you want a coach, so consult him on exactly how to proceed with your schedule. Again, triathlon success depends on excellent planning.

For more beginner triathlon training exercises and a proven triathlon training program to help your performance follow the links.

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Posted by The Running Guy - December 13, 2008 at 12:55 am

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Triathlon Swimming – Help – I Sink Like a Rock! 5 Keys to Swimming Level in the Water

I got an email from a beginner triathlete that went like this: “Can you help me with my triathlon swimming? When I get in the water I sink like a rock and can’t keep myself near the top of the water. Any tips?”

This is a pretty common problem for triathletes struggling with their swimming. It is an important problem to fix, too. The more of your body (low hips and legs) you have to pull through the water, the slower you go and the more energy you use during the swim. Slower and more tired getting out of the water is not a good combination.

If your hips are sinking then you aren’t level in the water and that causes problems. Here are 5 tips on how to teach yourself to swim level in the water during your next triathlon swim.

1. One common misconception is that you need to swim “on top” of the water. The first thing you need to understand is that your goal is not to be “on top” of the water – you can work so hard on pushing your body up that your stroke suffers. Your goal is to be level in the water, with mainly your arms and mouth (during your breathing) out of the water. Swim some without your swim cap so you can feel where the water line hits your head. You want more than half your head to be below the water line – higher than that and you are probably holding your upper body too high, which can cause your hips to drop.

2. Take a big breath. When your lungs are full of air they act like a life preserver and make it easier to keep your whole body higher and level in the water. Use this as your “ballast” that you push to raise your hips (see tip number 3 for more about this). Practice holding your breath during most of your stroke, exhaling quick at the end just as you begin your next big breath.

3. A big part of swimming is just getting comfortable. Practice floating on both your stomach and your back. Practice rolling from your stomach to your back and then back to your stomach. Concentrate on pressing your chest (if you are on your stomach) or your shoulder blades (on your back) into the water. You should notice that your hips pop up level with the rest of your body.

4. Concentrate on your balance during drills. Swim lengths of the pool doing stroke drills where you concentrate on your balance and pressing your chest into the water.

5. Improve your kicking form. Many beginner triathletes kick by bending their legs a lot at the knee – this can definitely cause your hips to sink in the water. You want to stay very long in water, so your kick needs to be from your hips, not your knees. Swim some drills wearing flippers and concentrate on keeping your knees somewhat straight (they can bend, but only slightly). Flippers will also improve flexibility in your ankles, which will further improve your swim stroke. I sometimes imagine that I’m wearing flippers while swimming to improve my kick technique.

If you use these tips during your triathlon swimming training you should see your swim times drop and you should have more energy on the bike when you get out of the water. See my 3 minute swim lesson at Coach-Janet.

Triathlon Coach Janet Wilson is a USAT certified triathlon coach and ACE certified personal trainer. Janet is an accomplished and nationally-ranked amateur triathlete and she coaches triathletes of all skill levels, from a triathlon beginner to Hawaii Ironman qualifiers. To learn more about triathlon training, swim tips, coaching programs or just great tips on how to stay in shape visit her website at

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Posted by The Running Guy - April 12, 2008 at 10:37 am

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Triathlon Training Plan – How Do I Get My Bike Miles Up?

I got a question this week from a triathlete struggling to build up mileage on his triathlon bike. This is a common challenge for triathletes. The trick here is to build mileage slowly and consistently. Here are some tips:

Remember to consult your physician before starting any fitness program.

1. Build up mileage slowly. Most triathletes are competitive by nature and they tend to push themselves to the limit. Out of frustration they might try to do a 4-hour bike ride when their longest ride before that is only a couple of hours. This is very risky and counterproductive.

If you overtrain like this you are likely to injure yourself, which can take you out of the game for weeks. Even if you manage to finish it without injury, your body will take a long time to recover from the workout and you may lose a lot of the benefit you might have gained from the long ride. Instead you want to build up slowly over time, adding maybe 25 to 50 percent to your base long ride (based on time in the saddle not mileage) every couple of weeks (see my sample plan to do this below).

2. Take time to recover and adapt. The goal is to slowly build up the length of your longest training ride while building in time to recover. Get to a plateau, ride there for a week and then try to extend it (see the sample program below).

3. A beginner can build effectively riding just 2 to 3 times per week. You don’t have to build your endurance by riding 3 or 4 hours every time you get on your bike. Instead focus on one long ride each week (time not miles). Your ultimate goal should be to ride for as long as you think your complete race will take you to finish. Your other rides during the week don’t need to be as long, but you might want to add some strength or technique training to these rides (like hills or cadence work).

4. Sample triathlon training plan Let’s say that your goal is to finish an olympic distance triathlon in around 3 hours. “Leg time” for this race is 2.5 hrs or more. Building your bike to 2.5 to 3 hours will help build the endurance needed for this event. Let’s make your goal to do a long ride of around 3 hours about a month before your race. Today you can easily do two one hour rides per week. How do you get to your goal?

By the way, you don’t have to be able to do a 3 hour ride to finish your first olympic distance race, but it is a good goal. As you advance you might try to increase the number of miles you finish during your long ride (see tip 6 for more on this). Here is an example of a basic plan to get you to your goal:

Building Bike – Time goals for your one long ride per week. Other workouts for the week would be based on your personal level of fitness.

a. Week One: Ride = 1.5 Hours
b. Week Two: Ride = 1 Hour
c. Week Three: Ride = 2 Hours

At this point you’ve doubled your long ride. Do you need more time to recover? If so then start over at Week Two and then do Week Three again. If you recover better then move on to Week Four. Do the same thing after each week that you build mileage – if it takes more than a couple of days to recover go back to the next lowest recovery week and start from there.

d. Week Four: Ride = 1.5 Hours
e. Week Five: Ride = 2 Hours
f. Week Six: Ride = 1.5 Hours
g. Week Seven: Ride = 2.5 Hours
h. Week Eight: Ride = 2 Hours
i. Week Nine: Ride = 3 Hours

Note: All rides should be ridden fresh with no hard workouts at least the day before and the day after. The pace should be in a comfortable easy pace (you should be able to talk or have a conversation while you are riding during the majority of your ride). Learn to “spin” or use your easier gears to prolong your muscle endurance.

You did it! At this point your long ride is now 3 hours and you have made a great improvement in your endurance. Next you will want to start working on other things like speed, terrain, etc.

5. Make sure that you are eating and drinking during these rides. If you are hungry or thirsty you waited to long to eat or drink. Right now you are asking your body to do things it hasn’t done before, you will need the calories. Eventually you will get more efficient and may not need to eat as much.

6. Time, Mileage or Heart-rate? Eventually all three of these measures will be important. When I start training someone we focus first on time at a comfortable pace. Next we add a heart-rate monitor to the mix and shoot for time within heart-rate zones. Finally we start working on the number of miles covered, heart-rate, and time. I suggest you start the same way.

If this sounds too over-planned, simplify it. Last winter I started training for a spring Century ride and my workout plan was just to add an hour to my long ride every 3 weeks until I got to 6 hours (although remember that I was starting from a pretty strong base and I didn’t train much in the other disciplines, I did hit the weight room 1 time per week, and the Yoga mat a couple times a week). The key is to do what works for you. Use this plan to adapt something for yourself or for you to present to your coach.

Triathlon Coach Janet Wilson is a USAT certified triathlon coach and ACE certified personal trainer. Janet is an accomplished and nationally-ranked amateur triathlete and she coaches triathletes of all skill levels, from a triathlon beginner to Hawaii Ironman qualifiers. To learn more about triathlon training plans, triathlon bike tips, coaching programs or just great tips on how to stay in shape visit her website at

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Posted by The Running Guy - March 8, 2008 at 1:42 pm

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Triathlon – Things A Beginner Needs to Know

This is collection of the answers to those pesky questions like:

1 What are the different Triathlon races and what are the distances?

2 What if I need to use the restroom on the bike / run leg?

3 Drafting? What is it? Can I do it?

4 Do I need a special Triathlon bike?

5 How to drink out of a paper cup while running?

Triathlon distances (and a few useful measures)

There are a couple of standard tri distances, however races often vary the distances

Sprint 0.75 k swim : 22k bike : 5k run

Olympic 1.5k swim : 40k bike : 10k run

Half-Ironman 1.2 mile swim : 56 mile bike : 13.1 mile run

Ironman 2.4 mile swim : 112 mile bike : 26.2 miles run (yes, that is a marathon)

1 k = 1000 meters = 0.62 miles 1 mile = 1600 meters (1.6 km)

What if I need to use the restroom on the bike / run leg?

It’s very important to drink enough and remain properly hydrated. In a sprint distance tri you might not have to cope with this, but in longer races you may have to.

1) Find a bush! If you are reading a page for Tri beginners you probably are not about to win a race anyway and can spare the 1-2 minutes.

2) Stop at the Port-a-Potties

3) for Men only:

Rule 1: Make sure you’re safe from legal repercussions. Urinating in public may violate indecent exposure, public nuisance, and disorderly conduct laws. In some states, you can become a sex offender for urinating in public. You don’t want to have to knock on your neighbors’ doors and notify them of your status. It’s awkward.

Rule 2: Make sure you’re riding on a slight decline. If you’re going too fast, you don’t want to lose control of your bike. If you’re going too slow, you don’t want to have to pedal midstream. You might as well just stop and get off your bike.

Rule 3: Learn the proper technique. Extend one leg and rotate the opposite hip towards the extended leg. Free your member from the top or bottom of the shorts, and let it flow. Tap as necessary.

Drafting, What is it? Can I do it?

Drafting refers to a riding technique where one cyclist rides behind another — sometimes directly behind them, sometimes behind them and a little bit off to the side — using the front cyclist as a windbreak. It helps reduce air resistance, meaning that the person riding in back doesn’t have to work as hard. The low pressure pulls you forward, while the wake pushes you along.

Most US races do not allow drafting. Both people involved in drafting (on the bike) can get disqualified. Note the “on the bike” part, because perfectly legal to draft in the swim .

Do I need a special Triathlon bike?

If you are a beginner, definitely no. I’ve seen people race on mountain bikes. It might be a good idea to put slick tires on that mountain bike, though. What’s the reason that people spend so much money for the lightest, fastest, coolest bike? Look at distances in a triathlon and estimate how long it will take you to finish each of the three legs. The bike leg typically makes up more than half of the race (time wise). So if you can get a gadget that speeds you up 10% for one of your three legs… which leg would you choose? 10% of a 10 minute swim would be 1 minute saved. 10% of a 25 minute run = 2.5 minutes, 10% of a 60 minute bike leg = 6 minutes. The choice is clear. There is another reason: time trial bikes are built slightly different than normal road bikes. For example the seat stem is a bit more vertical, which moves the saddle forward. This helps you transition from the bike to the run. Typically the start of the run is difficult in a triathlon (your legs feel like rubber and/or tend to cramp). The forward seat position shifts the work on the bike to slightly different muscles, which helps a bit.

How to drink out of a paper cup while running

There is a trick to it. When you run up to the aid station make eye contact with the volunteer handing you the cup. Grab for it from the top — do not try to grab it sideways. Right when you have the cup, squeeze the top together a bit. That gives you an oblong opening. Water won’t splash out of that easily. Drink from one end of that opening. You can run full speed without spilling any water.

and Watch those nipples…

What I mean is: your own! And this is a tip for men and women! Long distance runners sometimes put a band-aid over their nipples, or they use a products such as nip-guard, bag balm, or body glide. During a long run, the fabric of the shirt , singlet or jersey rubs this sensitive spot so much that it becomes seriously unbearable. And not in a pleasing way — it simply hurts.

Check out the Active Peak web site for answers to the following questions and more.

Should I use CO2 Cartridges?

What size Wheels are the best?

Do I need a wetsuit ? What kind of Wetsuit do I need?

What about Heart Rate Monitors?

Lulu has coached and trained triathletes for over 5 years. She currently holds USA Triathlon Level 2 accreditation. Lulu is an Ironman and has finished more than 40 triathlons and marathons. To read more Lulu’s Triathlon articles visit on line where Lulu is one of the coaches.

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Posted by The Running Guy - March 1, 2008 at 9:31 am

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