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


Team / Racing

JP Theberge Two-time World Champion and 2016 Rio Paralympics Hopeful

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People ask me why I do this, this crazy sport of triathlon. Why do it? Why get up at 4:45am every morning, week in and week out to train? Why put wear on tear on my already damaged body ? What am I trying to prove? Why devote so much time on this when I could be devoting it to my family, my business, my community? I ask myself the same question and the answer is simple.

Because it is important. Moving your body is important. Disabled sports are important. Disabled triathlon is important. Paratriathlon is important.

I started in disabled triathlon 14 years ago, before it was called “Paratriathlon.” It was a community of like-minded people who, suffering some sort of bodily insult, refused to let society define them and refused to be put into a box of “less than.” Many of us were driven by the need to prove that we were just as capable, viable as anyone else, despite whatever abnormality we suffered.

When I started in triathlon, the pinnacle of our sport was the ITU World Championships. The Athletes with a Disability category (AWAD) was a few years old. Winning the race was the highest honor you could obtain in the sport. It meant you were the best disabled triathlete of your class (leg amputees, arm amputees,wheelchair athletes, etc.).

I made it to my first world championships in Lausanne in 2006. There I encountered something I had never seen before: an international crowd of spectators and people like me from every corner of the globe. It was a community that I fell in love with. There were people there I admired and looked up to. They inspired me to train harder, become better as a person and as a triathlete. They lit a fire in me.

Every year, the field got tougher and tougher, broader and more diverse. We all had to train harder and harder. 40 or so athletes in 2006 morphed into over a hundred in 2014 and 2015. The field now encompassed 40+ countries across all five continents including South Africa, Morocco, Finland, Australia, Russia, China, Japan, Korea and almost every country in Europe. The Americas were well represented with the USA, Canada, Brazil, Argentina and Mexico in full force. National delegations were swelling in ranks. National teams began supporting their disabled athletes with training and team support. Sponsors were taking notice.

In 2010, the biggest thing to happen to our sport was the hard-won inclusion into the program of the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games. I say hard won, because it took over a decade of lobbying, politicking, recruiting athletes and development of the sport across 5 continents to prove that we had the enough elite athletes to represent the sport in the Paralympics. And, we were only one of at least 11 major sports seeking inclusion. In addition to being an athlete, I played a small role in the political and organizational process as a board member of one of the earlier Paralympic inclusion committees, particularly in recruiting athletes from Latin America, where I have family roots.

Now, when I race, there is another cadre of young athletes who have been inspired by the earlier generation including myself and those that came before us. I see them with the same sense of awe and inspiration that I had when I first began racing internationally–this sense that “hey, there are others like me out there, and I know I can achieve what they have achieved, if not more.” With the prospect of competing in the Paralympics, the fire grew bigger for all of us.

Since 2006, I’ve competed in 8 World Championships, winning twice and three times taking second place–a record I’m proud of. Of course I want to compete in the 2016 Rio Paralympics, first and foremost, because it is would be an achievement of a lifetime and a long-held goal of mine. But also, it is because I want to be part of something that I played a small role in helping create. I do it as a tribute to those who fought, in the early years, to insist that race directors include a disabled division in their races. For those, like Jim McLaren (for whom the Challenged Athlete Foundation was originally conceived) who refused to sit back and let life pass them by, despite the societal expectations to do just that. I do it so that those little kids who might be alone in their disability see that we can do great things if we don’t let others define us. I do it for those who, like me, saw their normalcy abruptly interrupted on account of an accident, illness or war and perhaps might not see the light at the end of the tunnel. I also do it to set a good example to my kids, my community, my country and to make my family proud.

That is why I do it. And that is why it is important.

What’s next? Qualifying for the Paralympics this year is going to be the hardest test of my athletic career. The process is an arduous schedule of races taking place around the world, where my competitors and I will be accumulating ranking points that will ultimately qualify us for a slot. There will only be 10 or so Paralympic slots worldwide in my class which numbers in the hundreds of competitors. My first big race of the season will be in March, in Sarasota. It is a continental Panamerican championship and so it is weighted much higher than other races. A good performance there will not guarantee me a slot, but a bad performance will likely take me out of the running. No pressure.

By August, the Paralympic slots will be allotted and the start list will be published. At that point, I will know if I qualified to represent the USA at the 2016 Paralympic games in Rio (in September). If I do qualify, it will be a great honor to represent the US on the worldwide stage and to bring notoriety to the sport of triathlon in its first-ever Paralympics. To accomplish this, I will have to juggle 20+ hours of training a week, 60+ hours a week running my business (Cultural Edge which is turning 13 this year), taking my kids to soccer, horseback riding and my duties on the Elfin Forest Harmony Grove Town Council where I serve as Vice-Chair and Communications Chair.

None of this, of course, would be possible without the extensive support of my family, friends and of course sponsors. I am so thankful to: my wife, especially, for putting up with my insane training, massive food consumption, crazy travel and work schedules; my kids for being the reason I try to be the best person I can be; CAF Paratriathlon Elite Team, for the support both financial and emotional that allows me and my teammates to showcase the best in disabled athletics around the world; and the great sponsors and supporters: the great guys at Nytro Multisport, Quintana Roo for hooking me up with the best tri bikes money can buy and the great Team CAF sponsors: J&L Pie Company, Nike, Nuun, Procellera Elite, ISM Saddles, XTERRA Wetsuits and Rudy Project sunglasses and helmets.

Never a dull moment. The adventure continues.


Training & Fitness

Brick Workout

brick workout by Felipe Loureiro

What is a Brick Workout?
Bricks refer to training two different disciplines during the same workout.

Brick Workouts are an essential part of triathlon training, helping to simulate race effort with 2 combined sports (swim/run, bike/run, swim/bike)

Here is one of my favorite brick workouts: A Run/Bike/Run Brick Workout that includes practicing quick transitions.

RUN: 2 miles at a very comfortable pace (60% effort)

TRANSITION 1 (Run to Bike): Set your bike up with your shoes attached to the pedals. Use rubber bands looped between the heels and frame to hold the shoes in a horizontal position. Once on the bike, start pedaling with your feet on top of your shoes. When you are cruising at speed, coast and slip your feet into your shoes. Keep your eyes ahead on the road, not down at your feet.

BIKE: 12 miles = 4 miles focusing on high cadence (70% effort) + 4 miles at your race pace effort (80%) + 4 miles closer to your maximum effort (90%)

TRANSITION 2 (Bike to Run): As you are returning from the bike, slip your feet out of your shoes before you reach the transition area. Practice this skill first during training and be sure to gain confidence in this skill before race day!

RUN: 2 miles at your race effort (80%) *FINISHING STRONG

Brick Workouts like this are a perfect way to prepare yourself physically and mentally for your race!

brick workout

*Set up your bike and run gears as you would for race day. Lay all of your gear out in the exact same way you are planning to race. The key is to complete your transitions as fast as possible, so remember “every second counts”.

Learn this skill first during a training practice, before race day!

felipeFelipe Loureiro has been successful in triathlon at all levels – from amateur to pro – accumulating over 26 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.


The Nytro Evolution

Nytro Multisport

In 1992 Nytro Multisport opened its door and helped grow perhaps one of the most important athletic booms in decades.  Located on the famous “Coast Highway” in the quiet beach town of Encinitas, CA, “Nytro” as the store is known to multisport enthusiasts everywhere, became the Mecca for the latest in cycling, swimming and running apparel. Nytro became a pioneer in the industry when they launched their on-line store.  The first of its kind, the revolutionary site sold the best products in the industry and featured hard to get items that were coveted by “Tri guys (and gals)” world-wide.  Thus, Nytro in reality, helped to open the sport of triathlon to global popularity.  In turn, what we see today is that triathlon is one of the fastest growing sports among amateur athletes.

When Nytro first opened there was a need to serve the triathlon community in the local coastal section of San Diego.  After all, it was a hotbed for the sport.  Athletes such as World Champions Michellie Jones, Mark Allen, Greg Welch and many others lived and trained in the area.  Bikes needed to be serviced somewhere and swim goggles replaced, but no one anticipated the surge in popularity the sport would experience in the early to mid 2000’s.  Nytro is now the trendsetter in what other retailers choose to carry.  Manufacturers such as Compex, Hammer, 2XU, Zoot, Cannondale and Capo, to name a few, recognize the presence Nytro has in the virtual shopping world.

Part of what makes this landmark store so successful is its commitment to customer service.  The motto is simple, “Offer the latest technology, the most reliable advice and the best customer service in the industry.”  Walk into the store and you are greeted by a fellow swimmer, biker and runner who know everything about what you will need to get to your next PR.  New to the sport?  The staff can help direct you to the products you will need to get your training started and even suggest beginning training groups you can be a part of.  A “one stop shop” so to speak, owner Skip McDowell knows that what his staff is really doing is helping a customer with their fitness goals, reach new personal bests, and enjoy the ride.

Nytro’s presence at major triathlon events and local training events is unparalleled.  Stop by the store for a coffee and bagel before you head out for a long Saturday ride.  The provisions are well stocked outside the shop by Harvey and Ramon who will also provide you with directions and all the “need to knows” of the Pacific Coast Highway.  Nytro is a vital supporter of the Tri Club of San Diego as well the Challenged Athletes Foundation (CAF) and other important triathlon media sources.  Skip and Kristie McDowell, the owners, are proud that their store is what Triathlete Magazine refers to as, “the Mecca of triathlon gear.”  Anyway you look at it, the store that was an integral part in the beginning popular stages of triathlon, is now one of the leaders in the industry and is helping the sport to continue growing strong.

Gear, Reviews

Zoot Sports Ultra Kane Running Shoes Review

zoot ultra kane shoe

The Zoot Ultra Kane described as a high mileage stability trainer built for runners seeking comfort and substance over what everyone else is wearing.

I tested this shoe by running on the various terrain and doing about approximately 50km per week.

I am 185cm tall and 76kilos and average about 50-80km per week. 65% of my runs are on trails and 35% are on the road. Right now I run in the Asics 2050’s, NikeLunarGlide’s and Montrail Hardrocks.

Aesthetically, Zoot did a great job designing the Ultra Kane. Right away, I was impressed with the look of the Ultra Kane and it’s construction. The only suggestion I would make is to add more eyelets (lace holes). I needed to “lace lock”…. Out of the box I ran 16 km’s and the shoes felt like it had good amount of cushioning and stability. As a mild over-pronator and midfoot striker, the Ultra Kane’s also offered a nice mid-level amount of support. The shoe also seems to be very durable, should be able to handle the high mileage and heavier efficient runners.

Here is a summary of pros and cons of the shoe:


The fit was excellent out of the box. The weight of the Ultra Kana is approx 11 ounces (size 12) ; quite light considering it’s support features. Zoot did a very nice job of keeping them light. The fit around the heel is snug without any hot spots that can cause blisters. This would be beneficial for those who prefer not to wear socks. It would be great for triathlons from the sprint to ½ Ironman. It is very easy to get in and out of the shoe; the stretchy material on the upper seems to add elasticity similar to the EZ laces.


The fit of the upper shoe is nice but could improve with extra eyelets especially towards the top of the shoes. I found that my foot wasn’t secure enough and tend to slide forward. I used ‘Lace Lock’ lacing technique and it helped secure the heel back. I do like the low profile design of the midsole but I felt it could have used more cushioning on the metatarsal area.

In conclusion, this is a great shoes for triathletes and runners who are seeking a light weight stability training/racing shoe. Also, triathletes or runners who run without socks will appreciate the sockless feature of the shoe. I would not recommend this show for the severe over-pronator or inefficient runners. Since this shoe was my first Zoot shoe of any kind, I was impressed with the fit, feel and quality of the shoe. I hope Zoot will continue to improve the shoe especially the lacing design but without drastically changing the shoe. It could be my next racing shoe.