Training & Fitness, Uncategorized

The Plasma Gets a Prescriber


It is a head-scratcher why this bike has not been a better seller. A part of the problem was the spec, back in 2014 when Kienle won Kona. There was no electronic shift system for this bike. That has since changed. Here is a Di2 Plasma Premium on Nytro’s site for a tick under $7000 complete.

Scott’s well-regarded Plasma has been a visible presence in triathlon since its introduction. Hard-riding, Kona-winning Sebastian Kienle as well as Luke McKenzie, Flora Duffy and others ride Scott’s fine bikes.

But there has been another issue with this bike, which is the lack of a prescriber or solver. Trek, Felt, Quintana Roo, Cervelo, TriRig, Giant, you name it, most of the important brands have Pad X/Y solvers and by this I mean if you know the X and Y dimensions from the bottom bracket to the pads (either to the rear or center of the pad) there is a “prescription” given you by the brand. You’re a Trek Speed Concept, size L, low/far stem, 35mm pedestal, pads pulled back 20mm from neutral.

This has allowed Trek to sell its Speed Concept well in spite of a truly inept national dealer network (that is to say, a truly great dealer network that is truly inept at sizing and selling tri bikes). How useful is Trek’s solver? As of this writing there are about 8,500 posts on the Trek Speed Concept Owners thread which consists of, mostly, “Hey, Carl, I’m 625×495,” and Trek engineer Carl Matson answers with a prescription like that listed above. The customer goes to a Trek dealer, says, “I’ll take a Speed Concept, Project One,” gives the prescription and hands over the credit card, and the Trek store employee, having no flipping idea what the consumer just recited, charges the card and a month later another SC arrives. The dealer accepts a UPS shipment, takes the bike out of the box (probably with a blurry knowledge of how the transaction occurred) and the new SC owner rides off into the sunset.

Scott didn’t have such a prescribing tool. Now it does. Scott uses the rectangle (or parallellogram) motif, which I think is wise. It’s easy to see all sizes on one chart, and it’s easy to read. If your Pad X/Y (this chart uses pad-center, not pad-rear) is sitting on the bottom of a rectangle that means the bike in that size fitted to you will be slammed (you won’t be able to go any lower). If the pads sit 20mm above the bottom of the rectangle you pedestal the pads 20mm.


Now, to be clear, you don’t have every bit of adjustability in these rectangles. You have 3 fore/aft options inside these rectangles: dead center, forward 15mm, and rearward 15mm, because fore/aft is actuated by moving the pad cradles forward or rearward (or center) and each cradle has holesets 15mm apart from each other.

Scott was wise to place this sizer on a page that can be printed out on a letter-sized piece of paper. Quintana Roo did the same thing. Now a fitter or retailer can print it out, laminate it, sit it next to the fit station and prescribe the bike after the fit is done just by reading off this laminated sheet. Click here to download a printable version.

What about mortal Plasmas, such as the Plasma 10 and 20, which are loosely based on the Premium but use standard stems and which might sell for down to $2,200? We use a different process to prescribe a precise complete bike solution based on a rider’s fit coordinates. For these bikes, just as with other mortal bikes like Cervelo’s P2 and P3, the process is just as granular, just as effective, but does not reply on the Pad X/Y solver.

By Dan Empfield   |   SLOWTWITCH.COM

Training & Fitness

The Off Season

Off Season Training

You just finished your last race of the season and the only thing on your mind is a well deserved week off doing what you have been dreaming of: NOTHING.Watching Netflix, catching up with your sleep, eating ice cream and cookies, finally fixing the house door that’s been broken since March.

Every endurance athlete needs a physical and mental break at least once every season. It is absolutely essential for your body and mind!

As soon as you are done with your break, it becomes time for the famous “off-season”. However, many athletes can often misunderstand what it means to be in the off-season. It can be interpreted as a time of checking out, skipping workouts, and basically in a vacation mode. Off-Season is actually a time when all of the foundation work is done… a great endurance athlete is made during the off-season months.

Follow these “Off-Season” guidelines to make sure you will have a killer season:

  • Work on your weaknesses!
  • Drills, drills, and more drills… (swim, bike, and run)
  • Make Core Strength Training a Priority! Now is the time to build an injury proof body (2 to 3 Times a Week)
  • Cross Training: Try new things to keep your workouts fun and to help your training: hike, paddleboard, surf, ski mountaineering, mountain bike, cyclocross.
  • Focus on Stretching: Include at least 5-10 minutes of Dynamic Stretching before every workout. Try yoga once a week if you can!
  • Hills: Build strength and power… try to incorporate more hills during bike rides and runs.
  • Take your workouts Off-Road: Try to run on a trail at least once a week (preferred on your longer run). Trail running improves your balance and proprioception and works a different variation of your muscles.
  • Stick with your Training Plan: A proper off-season plan will make you a much stronger athlete for the upcoming season.

Felipe Loureiro has been successful in triathlon at all levels – from amateur to pro – accumulating over 30 years of experience in the sport and coaching. His athletic success came as he coached others and grew a business. He knows what it takes for you to succeed in any multisport discipline despite your busy schedule.

Events, Gear, Training & Fitness

Ladies Night at Nytro July 14, 6-8pm


// Leslie Myers to discuss healthy eating habits and nutritional foods for the active woman.
// Michellie Jones to share tips on training and racing that made her a World and Olympic champion.
// Kristin Mayer to show off her Betty Design “bad ass” triathlon and cycling apparel.
// Talia Herman from Garmin to demonstrate how products with HRM can enhance your fitness level.
// Sara Cates from Rehab United to discuss injury prevention and “listening to your body”.
// Beth Gerdes will demonstrate how to change a flat tire and what you need in your gear bag.


// Good eats compliments of Leslie Myers and
// Raffle for cool prizes
// Special one-night only offers from Garmin, Betty Design Giro, Cervelo, and more


Featured Bikes, Gear, Training & Fitness

Start Gravel Riding Today


You already have the bike that works
Your current road bike can be used for an introduction to gravel riding.  All you need are slightly bigger tires.  Continental 28mm Gator Hardshell tires work fine for many dirt roads here in North County San Diego. I have ridden the BWR on 25mm tires, but this year I rode tubeless 28mm tires and was so glad I did.

The term “gravel riding” means riding a road or cyclocross bicycle on adventures which include riding both road and off road.  Unlike many areas of the country, North County of San Diego does not have long stretches of dirt or gravel roads, but it does sport some great off road riding. We have to connect these short to medium lengths of dirt road by riding on pavement. This is where 28mm tires shine. In many cases 28mm tires are the largest tires most road bicycles can run.   Also this size does not slow you down on pavement.  This will allow for exploration of many local dirt roads and trails.

Have you caught the Gravel Riding Fever?
After you have ridden a few gravel rides, it is time to think about a second set of wheels. One wheelset would be paired with your current tires.  The other wheelset would have a more gravel friendly tire.  For example, the aluminum Reynolds Stratus Pro is a great choice.  Weighing in at 1450 grams a pair, they are tubeless ready and can take a beating on the trails.  With two sets of wheels you can optimize your ride time and ride options.

When it is time to get your Gravel Bike?
Until recently a gravel bike was a cyclocross bike with different tires.  The new category of  “endurance bike” with disc brakes has a good compromise of features that allow riding on pavement and dirt.

Perfect gravel bike for Southern California
So, you have a road bike, but you also want the perfect gravel bike. Several manufactures are starting to make gravel specific bikes.  These bikes have hydraulic disc brakes, a lightweight frame, can absorb the rough road and is stable in the dirt. Add electronic di2 shifting and you have the perfect gravel bike. Nytro has that bike

Nytro has that bike.
Nytro has two great choices for gravel bikes; the Scott Addict and Cervelo’s C5 & C3.  If your rides are going to be mostly dirt, get the Addict as it allows for a greater tire size.  If you will be riding more road than dirt get the the Cervelo, it will be lighter and more stable.  If you only want one bike, the C series Cervelo is the bike that performs on the road and is agile on the dirt.

Scott Addict Gravel
Cervelo C5 Series


Training & Fitness

Vegetarian Pho, Triathlon Training and What the Doctor Ordered

It’s so fun to say “tri-ath-a-lon-ing” and it’s even more fun to do it. Last November, I finally kicked Achilles issues to the curb; trained for a few weeks; ended up with some debilitating foot problem; troubleshot said problem and finally got it somewhat under control (read NO GOUT). I was finally able to string together 3 weeks of consistent training COMPLETE WITH RUNNING!!!!! But this past Tuesday, as bad luck would have it, I went down hard on my bike and ended up with another round of bruised ribs + a palm-sized bruise on my right quad + bruised ego. Another couple days off as running, swimming and Core 40 were not happening. Friday hit and my body shot me the middle finger as I went down hard again—this time with a cold. Could these last 12 months be any more inconsistent regarding my athletic endeavors?


Well, when life deals you lemons (or in this case, bruises and a stuffed-up head), you first scream every obscenity you can think of, chuck a book or two across the room, send an sniff-ly email to “coach share” about how you are not RACING, let alone, TRAINING for some indefinite period of time; get short with your spouse; drown your sorrows in a HALF EMPTY glass of wine because nothing at this point is HALF FULL. Then you let everything settle down and make some lemonade

Or in this case, PHO. Just what the doctor ordered.

On Friday night, Geoff, well aware of my cold, brought home some vegan Pho from Queen Pho in San Marcos—I ate the vegetables (Steamed Broccoli YUM! Steamed Tatsoi YUM! Steamed Carrots-surprise-YUM!) and broth and skipped the rice noodles. It was so good (and nothing at this point was tasting good) that I had the leftovers on Saturday morning. Today I decided that I wanted it again for breakfast. I googled “Vegetable Pho Broth” but after reading recipes, I decided that I was too lazy and impatient to make a “charred ginger-onion-infused-with-cinnamon-and-star-anise veg stock”. I know, I know, doesn’t EVERYONE make complicated stocks from scratch in order to flesh out a breakfast meal on sleepy Sundays? The solution??????? Whole Foods stocks a Vegetarian Pho Broth made by Pacific Foods. I grabbed a quart of it, came home and tried it unheated. WAY. TOO. ANISE-Y. I’m not a licorice or Sambuca fan AT ALL so when a dish has a fair amount of anise flavor, I’m completely turned off. Luckily, I had some Miso stock on hand, so I cut the Pho broth with some Miso broth and added a little bit of sesame oil, Sriracha and a splash of fish sauce. Into the heating broth I threw green onions and seaweed. I then added a generous amount of spinach and cooked it just until wilted. Finally, I turned off the heat and added diced sprouted tofu (with a sore throat, the creaminess and mildness of the tofu actually tasted great), chopped cilantro and squeeze of lime. I was too lazy to steam any veggies but you certainly could do so and add them in with the spinach. Anyhoo, in 10 minutes breakfast was served—at least, mine was. Geoff was still busy making an applewood-smoked bacon, egg and aged gouda croissant sandwich with chipotle aioli, sprouts and avocado.


Regarding soy Some people are concerned about soy in their diets (a-hem Paleo peeps). There are plenty of labels such as Paleo, High-Fat-Low-Carb, Vegan, Pescatarian, VEGGan (this is relatively new label—vegans who eat eggs) and Gluten-Free. With those labels come restrictions. I hesitate to attach a label to my eating style because I’d most likely violate the “rules” and then come across as a hypocrite. I eat mostly vegetables. I eat high quality products. I eat very little grains. I eat pastured eggs. I eat Bugles and Cheetos only on long rides. I use full fat coconut milk and sauté with coconut oil. I’ll use fish sauce sparingly. And I probably eat a little soy probably 2-3 times a month. Today’s soup contained fermented soy (miso) broth and sprouted tofu. For those of you who are scared of soy but don’t know why, you should be aware that both the fermenting and sprouting processes neutralized soy’s phytic acid—the acid that prohibits your body from absorbing key vitamins and minerals. I would recommend 1. eating soy in moderation and 2. only buying products made from soy that been sprouted and/or fermented. Yes, most of the soy crops grown in the states are GMO, but by law products can’t be labeled “organic” when made with GMOs.


Quick and Easy Vegetable Pho

Serves 2-4

Difficulty Easy

Time to Prep and Cook 20 minutes

2 Cups Vegetarian Pho Stock (I used Pacific Foods brand)
2 Cups Miso Stock (I used Whole Foods organic 365 brand)
1 tsp dark Sesame Oil
½ tsp Sriracha (or more to taste)
1 tsp Coconut Aminos, Tamari or Fish Sauce (Fish Sauce is made from anchovies and is not vegetarian)
1 each Green Onion, thinly sliced
2 Tbsp Dried Seaweed pieces (I used Arame)
6 ounces Sprouted Extra Firm Tofu, cut into small cubes (I used Wildwood brand)
2 Cups Spinach Leaves
1/4 Cup roughly chopped Cilantro
2-4 Lime Wedges
Optional: Steamed Vegetables and Rice Noodles *requires extra cooking time

In Medium-Large Saucepan, bring to boil stock. Turn down heat to medium high and add Sesame Oil, Sriracha, Coconut Aminos, Green Onion and Dried Seaweed. Cook for 2 minutes
Add Spinach and cook another minute. Add Tofu and turn off heat
Add Cilantro
Label into bowls and serve with a wedge or two of lime

This weekend I’ve been horizontal for the most part, catching up with Downton Abbey. I’ve traded in wine for kombucha and weekend training for sleeping. Four days off from training feels like four weeks (that’s how screwed up the triathlete mentality is LOL). I know things will be somewhat back on track tomorrow and I’ll be tri-ath-a-lon-ing away.

Leslie Myers is a proud member of the Nytro Women’s Racing Team, GrooveTri, She’s a professional chef and owner of Foodsense, Now, a Solana Beach-based company which focuses on healthy eating for athletes. A multiple Kona Ironman finisher, dog lover and self-proclaimed oenophile, you will see her out on the roads on her Cervelo P3 in #badassisbeautiful Betty Designs gear”

Training & Fitness, Uncategorized

Go Hard, Go Easy… Know the difference!

Triathlon Training

A common problem that I continue to see in training is athlete going hard when they’re supposed to go easy and that just translates into the inability to go hard when it really counts.

When training, always adding more distance, more intensity, and increased speed is not always better. What is better is finding balance. If you are working with a coach, you will usually have your key workouts followed by easy recovery workouts. If you are self-coached athlete, you can use the simple rule of training one hard key workout day following by one easy day.

All of your key workouts should be approached like a race day, meaning you should be focused, prepared, rested, and ready to perform. These training days are important for improving your performance. These are the workouts that you want to push yourself and go hard!

The easy day workouts are just as important. Taking it easy and getting ready for the next key workout is essential. These are the days where discipline is required to not go hard. For example: you go to the pool for a one mile recovery swim. However, you recognize an age-group competitor that jumps into the lane next to you. When you star swimming all your recovery plans are thrown out the the window because you start swimming faster and faster to beat him.

If you are training hard all the time, your body experiences a snow ball effect of fatigue with no time for recovery. The body had a difficult time even trying to go hard anymore.

Tip: Use you heart rate to measure you effort during your workouts.

Felipe Loureiro is a Multiport Coach and Founder of Breakaway Training

Training & Fitness

Bricks and a Blind Chick

A few months ago Xterra Pro, Lesley Paterson and her husband Simon asked if I had room in my race calendar to help guide a blind triathlete,  Amy Dixon who is racing and training towards the Rio Paralympics this September.  After some discussion with my family, and feeling pretty satisfied with an incredible 2015 season culminating at Kona again, I gave Amy a call and knew after chatting that I could help her.

This was a way for me to use my years of experience as a former Pro/Olympic hopeful myself back in 2000, a Coach and now the 40-44 Ironman All World Athlete Champion, I could put all that knowledge to use in an entirely different way. Just like the athlete who lives in the snow, cold, sunshine or rain a blind athlete like Amy can benefit from a brick workout which is training in two disciplines back to back such as Swim/Bike or Bike/Run. As a busy mom or working professional a brick can be done out of your garage or run in the neighborhood using a GPS like the Timex ONE watch and Heart Rate Monitor. If I’m doing a brick from home, I love the Wahoo Trainer.  A huge benefit is how the trainer becomes your back wheel so you don’t wear down your tire and it’s very quiet. I can attach my Road or Triathlon Bike with perfection, because the bike attaches to a chain ring on the trainer. The Wahoo also connects to an IPAD or cell phone and displays power and cadence. It’s so fun and easy to use with bluetooth technology! The limitation of this trainer is it needs to have a power source of electricity and it’s heavy to move. If you want a portable bike trainer then I would go with a Kinetic 2.0 Road Machine or Cycleops.

Susanne Davis

Luckily, I live in sunny California so the track is a very fun and precise measured area to do a brick workout. The brick workout can help any triathlete training for any distance whether it’s a sprint, Olympic, Half Ironman or an Ironman. The workout teaches your body to transition smoother, run faster off the bike and builds confidence. It’s easy to record your splits, try to descend your splits, test your personal limit or find your sweet spot for pace and heart rate. Bricks teach you to understand and feel race like efforts. If you don’t have a lot of race experience, bricks teach you to run more comfortably at uncomfortable efforts! Athletes looking to maximize their time, want a safe place to keep your bike while you brick run, or in Amy’s case being blind and me at her side to help her hit paces; the track is perfect with even footing! Train like you race. Leave the excuses at home. If a blind Paralympic triathlete can do this, so can you!

Brick Workout: 60 to 75 minutes

Set Bike up on Trainer next to the track. Place bike and run shoes with speed laces on the side to practice quick transitions. Practice putting your bike shoes on while pedalling.

Warm up 15 minutes at 70% at Zone 2 either Biking or Running. Stretch. Then do 3 x 30 second hard efforts to spike heart rate and get cadence going on the bike or run. Then Start Set!

Main Set: 3 sets of : Bike 2 minutes easy 70% active recovery; then 4 minutes hard at 85 to 90% or Zone 4 to 5. Transition quickly and Run hard at 85 to 90% for 800 yards to a mile. (pick a run distance that falls into the 3 to 8 minute catagory. Each Set will take you 10 to 14 minutes. Use your mile, 5k, 10k or Half Marathon paces depending on your race goals.

Cool Down 10 minutes in the activity you didn’t do in the warm up.

By Susanne Davis (Coach/Mom/Athlete)