One word – awesome. If you were unable to attend this seminar, you missed out! Not to worry, Jessi Stensland has more lined up. If you’re not into triathlons, there’s also a partial day “run only” class. It was well worth it to attend the full seminar though.
I’m not going to give away any of Jessi’s material, in part because I can’t say some if it as well as she did. The day started off with the some movement preparation work and a posture check. Then followed some lecture. I was about to say “education” in place of lecture, but the education portion isn’t limited to the lecture part of the seminar. Then we went over some posture, mechanics, and corrections for running, cycling, and swimming.
Throughout the seminar, there were snacks provided. Have you ever been sitting in a seminar and been distracted by your grumbling tummy? Yeah, she didn’t want that. Lunch was also provided. While the lunches were not strictly Paleo, there were plenty of delicious things in it that I could eat. I think most of it, if not all of it, was gluten free.
Who is this appropriate for? Everyone. It’s reasonably priced, especially when compared to Crossfit certifications. For the beginners, it will get you started correctly. I would highly recommend this if you are a beginner triathlete. Why bother correcting bad habits when you can learn to do it correctly and safely from the get go? For the middle of the pack people, something like this is important if you intentions are to perform better. For coaches, it's great to pick up new methods and cues for your athletes. It's also approved for USAT and ACE continuing education.
The swimming portion wasn’t the biggest eye opener. I don’t say this because the information was less than relevant. I say this because I knew my swimming sucked, so I expected to be hit with lots of information. There were a lot of dry land skills presented so I can maximize my time in the water with drills. When I did Team in Training, drills were an essential part of practice. This probably explains why my first swimming experience wasn’t the dread I thought it would be. But after TnT and swim lessons, I let go of the drill work and my form suffered. Any time in the water was a waste of time. Don’t be fooled that you’re getting in mileage when your form sucks. Perfect practice makes perfect. A Craptacular practice makes crap. RLY.
The bike portion was the last part of the day. I made some slight changes to my posture. When Jessie gave me some cues, I wasn’t feeling the correct muscle activation. I was about to give up on it all, but Jessi wasn’t having it. She tried something else and BOOM, I got it. After thinking about it, it all made sense. If I changed my posture enough, there’s a good chance that I needed to change the setup of my bike to accommodate the new posture. Frenchy, the road bike, is now a step closer to being almost as good a friend as Rocky, the mountain bike.
As part of the seminar, we got a good template to start with. Also, we talked about changing the culture of the endurance world. First was an emphasis on movement prep, joint mobility, and joint stability. The other part was the importance of interval training vs the building mileage. That is a tough nut to crack. I’ve dabbled in both. I did Crossfit Endurance (CFE), which combines intensity, interval training, mixed with pacing. You get the same physiological effect from certain interval workouts as from long, slow distance practice. With the freed up time, you can concentrate on movement prep and recovery. While doing CFE, I couldn’t help but think about how many miles I was NOT building. I gave the programming what efforts I could and I got good results. A part of me thinks that I could have given it a better shot though. Next time, I’ll do some consistent mental checks to make sure I’m really dedicating my efforts to that style of programming. We’ll see how it goes, I’m pretty excited to be applying all the new stuff I’ve learned.