Rethinking Triathlon

Age group triathletes are not getting paid to race. For them, the sport is a hobby. They may be passionate about it, but it is still just a hobby. They have a separate profession that pays their bills—a job that primarily provides food and shelter and secondly, the equipment necessary to train and race. When the job calls, it takes a higher priority over the hobby. How often does a project come up at work that forces us to work overtime? How many of us come home from work and we are just too tired to train?

For many more of us, we have a family. Again, family is going to have a higher priority than our hobbies. How many family events preclude opportunities to train or recover properly? Holidays, birthdays, family get-togethers, vacations, sporting events and kid's activities can all interfere with our training regime.

Life happens. How do we find success in the sport of triathlon with all that life throws at us on a daily basis?

Rethinking Triathlon is based on decades plus work with people who have a life but want to get better at triathlon. It is about taking all of the technical aspects of triathlon and distilling it into the core elements so that amateur triathletes can focus their limited time and energy. It provides the tools athletes need to find long term success within the sport without getting mired down in the elements of training that provide diminishing returns.

Rethinking Triathlon tackles the primary questions that age group triathletes face in the sport.

  • What is the age group trap that mires triathletes in mediocrity? How can you escape that trap?
  • What is the most productive way to train throughout the year?
  • How can you create a simple yet solid training plan each week?
  • What skills should you master for swimming, biking, and running?
  • How do you conquer transitions?
  • How can you be successful on racing day?

Rethinking Triathlon is a handbook for age group triathletes who want to achieve their full potential in the sport without sacrificing their jobs, families and other commitments. The book provides practical advice on how to train effectively, overcome common obstacles and ultimately find success on race day.

Before Midnight Podcast

Before Midnight Podcast is a weekly podcast that explores the world of multisport. If it has to do with swimming, biking, running or some combination of the three sports, BMP covers it. We cover news, racing, training, technology, equipment, and the psychological aspects of all three sports.

The hosts, Brian and Linda, bring over 10 years of coaching experience and stories to the discussion of the world of multisport.

We are available on all of the major podcast streaming platforms. Check out the Before Midnight Podcast Web Page for the latest episodes.

We also have an archive for the older episodes of the podcast.

Coaching Philosophy

Our coaching philosophy is centered around the concept of lifelong performance. First off, we understand the importance of the next race, but coaching shouldn’t just be about the next race. It must keep the bigger picture in mind. That includes the entire year and even multiple years. We don’t force the now at the expense of longevity in the sport. Our program prioritizes the ability to compete and improve relative to your peers throughout life. We make it about creating a lifestyle and not just the results of the next race.

The other half of the equation is performance. We believe performance is found in the nexus of fitness, economy, and mental readiness.

First we strive to improve physical fitness. Research shows that the best training plans contain two types of workouts: challenging workouts that cause adaptations in the athletes and really easy workouts that promote recovery while improving aerobic fitness. What we have found is that most athletes spend the majority of their time in between these two intensities in what we call the junk zone. These are workouts that provide sub optimal adaptations and introduce extensive fatigue. Fatigue that makes it difficult to have high quality workouts that create the adaptations we need to improve performance. It translates into a combination of really easy workouts and difficult ones meant to spur greater fitness. We will remove the junk and replace it with quality workouts.

The second element is economy of motion. The ability to become more efficient. The definition of efficiency is the ratio of the useful work performed to the total energy expended. Simply put going faster at the same effort levels. We have found many times that improving an athlete’s technique and form can make greater gains than improving fitness. We work with our athletes on technique and form so they can maximize efficiency. Getting the most from their god given talents.

The third aspect of performance is mental readiness. We work with our athletes to help them clear their minds of the clutter that hinders performance and focus on execution. We work on keeping a positive dialog and avoiding the negative thought spirals that poison races. Most importantly we work to instill a belief in yourself. A belief that will allow you to move mountains and reach your personal goals.

Our Coaches

Brian Schenkenfelder

Brian Schenkenfelder currently holds a Level I coaching certification from USAT. He has been coaching multisport athletes since 2012.

He is also a certified Level II masters coach with USMS. He has been the head coach for the Clear Creek Masters swim team since 2012.

Linda Word

Linda Word is a Level I RRCA certified coach, ACE personal trainer and a USMS Level 1 coach.

She is a certified instructor for Beyond Barre, LiveStrong trainer, Bluegrass Cycle Club ride leader, pace captain and race director.

She has coached middle school cross country and been an educator for over 20 years.