Author Archive for Coach Al Lyman and Dr. Kurt Strecker

027: Does Running With a Forward Lean Help Efficiency? Does Your Bike Pedal Fit Matter? We Answer [Podcast]

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Forward_LeanHi Everyone!

Today on the podcast we discuss two things.

First, the foot-pedal interface is an important part of a bike fit, yet it is frequently overlooked.   When this is executed correctly, it can improve power and reduce injury.

Second, we answer the question about whether running with a forward lean improves efficiency. This questions leads to a rich discussion of running form. To quote Coach Al, unless you build and integrate the qualities that make for strong, efficient running on the inside, "you can lean forward all day long and all you're gonna get is a mess." We dive in.

026: Coach and Kurt and the Balance Puzzle (And We Don’t Mean Standing On One Foot) [Podcast]

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coach al and kurt talk balanceWe need to be in balance. We hear it so often it can sound cliche. But the simple concept of "being in balance" comes up over and over again in all facets of our lives. That's because the truth of its importance remains consistent over time.

Coach comes up with a "balance puzzle" for you today--and we don't mean learning how to stand on one foot. In the podcast, Coach and Kurt discuss how easy it is for athletes to lose balance. They discuss how letting just one element of training fall by the wayside works to the detriment of all you are trying to build.

Remember, folks, no puzzle is complete if there's even one piece missing. It all works in concert, and here's why.

Coach Al : BELIEVE, TAKE ACTION, then…MAKE IT HAPPEN

BELIEVE, and then TAKE ACTION and make it happen!

"Our greatest fear is not that we are powerless. Our greatest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure."

Marianne Williamson

 

Coach Al LymanOne of my many roles as “coach” is to help the athletes I coach learn to understand and accept that the only limits that they have are those that THEY place upon themselves. That’s a pretty frightening thought actually, because it essentially means the POWER to achieve success and happiness lies within us and is our responsibility alone.

While I am a fan of the book and movie, “The Secret,” you and I both know that "wishing" that you can do something, such as race to a new marathon or 5K personal record or finish an Ironman, will not, by itself, get it done. Yet at the same time, doubting that you have what it takes or believing you cannot do it, will most certainly prevent you from ever making it happen.

The choice of what to believe is clear. Believe that you can, believe that you will, and you are well on your way to making it happen!

The question I often ask is, "what do you truly believe you can do?"

Believe it or not, the difference between impossible and accomplished is largely a matter of belief. A world of things that were once considered impossible are now so common we take them for granted. Each one of those things became reality because someone believed it could happen. Everyday I speak with athletes who have achieved more than they ever thought possible because, at some point, they decided to believe in themselves. Then they did the work.

On the flip side, you all know that doubt in yourself is very easy to maintain.. The more we allow doubts to ‘take hold’ in our mind, the more they grow. Today, I challenge each of you to see how many of your doubts you can replace with positive and compelling beliefs! Take some concrete action toward this end!

Belief in oneself is of little use unless it is acted upon. By the same token, the most powerful actions and efforts are of little positive use unless there is some real, focused BELIEF behind them.

Positive thoughts, self-confidence, and then consistent action work best when it all “works” together. Confidence gives direction and focus to actions, while actions serve to manifest the beliefs into reality. Make sense?

 Here's your goal for today:
Put some real energy into believing and dreaming of achieving more than you ever thought possible. Then put your daily energy into making it happen through positive and consistent action. You have a brain and you have a body, so use them both together for positive, productive results.

Remember, every moment of every day, your beliefs guide your actions. Believe that you can, believe that you will, and your reality will follow along to new heights of success!

That’s it for now…

All the best,

- Coach Al

025: Discerning Gems from Junk in the Athletic Information Age (Podcast)

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Dr. Kurt Strecker and Coach Al Lyman, Pursuit Athletic PerformanceAccording to Darren Hardy, publisher and founding director of Success Magazine, we are bombarded by more than 30,000 marketing messages on a daily basis. How can any athlete hope to sort through such a mountain of information and effectively cull the wheat from the chaff?

Whether you're trying to choose the right triathlon bike, the training plan best for you, proper footwear, or learn how to do a kettlebell swing, this podcast is for you.

We may not have all the answers, but we'll help you ask good questions. to help you reach your goals.

Coach Al and Kurt

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A lot of what we talk about in the podcast revolves around helping YOU get the best information--and much of it is about getting to the BASICS. A quick tweet to share and you can have our FREE ebook, Baby Steps, to help you get to those basics about a choice that often perplexes athletes -- how to pick running shoes.

 

024: Race Day Nutrition: Plan A Fueling Strategy NOW (Podcast)

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Hi Everyone!

race day nutritionA little early in the year to talk race day nutrition? We don't think so.  The time to begin planning a fueling strategy is NOW, and in this podcast we review the many facets of how and why.

We walk you through the following:

      • Is there a perfect recipe for training and racing nutrition?
      • Which fueling products are best?
      • Can gut dysbiosis have an impact on general nutrition and/or race day results?
      • How many calories per hour?
      • Liquids vs. solids?
      • Impact of intensity and temperature?
      • What are some guidelines athletes can use in developing a fueling strategy?

 

We also talk about the essential importance of teaching your body to burn fat as a primary source of fuel. This is a fundamentally important baseline to establish, and we review specific strategies to make this happen that stretch right into your daily nutrition.

We love to talk this stuff! Questions? Fire them up!

Coach Al and Kurt

As a thank you for listening, if you would like to go deeper into this topic, you can sign up below for our webinar "Smart Training and Racing Nutrition." It fleshes out in depth all the topics we cover in the podcast. Enjoy!

021: Why The Front Plank Is A Dumb Exercise (Podcast)

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Hi Everyone!

You might be surprised to read that we think the the front plank is a dumb exercise. The triathletes and runners on our team RULE the plank, but a focus on the front plank is not part of our training. Here's why....

As you've undoubtedly seen, the front plank is common in training venues and gyms. Problem is, it's not the best exercise to create core STABILITY. As a competitive, endurance athlete, core stability is what you're after. Certainly, the front plank can help develop strength and endurance in the front of the body, but here's the problem.... The exercise is over used, and if you've looked around your gym, it is often poorly done.

Lots of people like to work on the muscles that make them look good in a bathing suit. If that's your aim, carry on.

BUT... if your mission is to create a good, solid, stable core in three planes of motion, the half front plank with a reach AND the side plank will give you a much better payoff for time and energy spent. These plank exercises challenge transverse and frontal plane motions respectively, and they are too often ignored.

If you're not familiar with the half front plank with reach, here's Dr. Strecker in a training video for our triathlon team. We don't usually share these, but OK, just this once--it's that important. 🙂

If you want to know more about core stability, we have a podcast here on the topic. We also have a three-part series of posts on "What You Don't Know About the Core CAN Hurt You," which you can find here.

We hope you enjoy our podcasts and find them useful for your training and racing. Any questions? Hit us up in the comments, or on Facebook. Let us know of any topics you would like us to cover too.

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HOLIDAY PROMO! Click on photo for details.

Gait analysis promotion

020: Gait Analysis: What It Is, What It Isn’t, and Why It Will Work For You (Podcast)

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Hey Everyone!

coach al conducting gait analysis

We've been getting lots of questions about gait analysis of late. It seems many of you are turning your attention to the basics during the off-season, and searching for ways to shore up weaknesses. That's exactly the right thing to be doing at his time of year to support your training and lay the proper foundation for a kick-butt 2014 season.

Gait analysis differs--from the basic shoe store version that looks simply at pronation and supination to the comprehensive clinical evaluation that examines muscle length, joint mobility, foot mechanics, running technique and holistic functional movement.  The key to any analysis is being able to use the information practically to improve function, optimize performance, get you faster, and reduce injury risk.

Have a listen. Whether you have a gait analysis with us at another reputable institution, you will be armed with the information you need to know to get the most out of the experience.

Helping YOU Be Great!

Coach Al and Kurt

We hope you enjoy our podcasts and find them useful for your training and racing. Any questions? Hit us up in the comments, or on Facebook. Let us know of any topics you would like us to cover too.

NOTE! If you review our podcast on iTunes you could win TWO MONTHS FREE on our training team! Click here for details, register below.

Click here to subscribe via RSS (non-iTunes feed)

We're on Stitcher Radio too!

HOLIDAY PROMO!

Gait analysis promotion

018: The Secret To Running Technique No One Is Telling You (Podcast)

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Hey Everyone!

Want to know the secret to running technique no one is telling you? (Hint: It has nothing to do with shoes or drills.)

Boston_MenWhen it comes to running, we tend to put the cart before the horse. Browse the web and you're sure to find plenty of coaches and trainers eager to help you improve your running form. And there's certainly no shortage of shoe companies who will tell you that their shoes are, in fact, the magic bullet you've been looking for.

Strap on a pair of those babies and you'll run faster and injury-free.

Um, not so much.

The truth is, our running technique is a product of the way we move.

It is the sum total of our flexibility, mobility, strength, stability and biomechanics. We see evidence of this in our Fast Lab everyday. When athletes restore balance in muscle length, achieve appropriate mobility in the joints, and develop strong, stable cores, the way in which they run is transformed.

Small tweaks can be made to things like posture, cadence and arm carriage, but these are not central. They are the "frosting on the cake." A particular shoe or the latest method can neither create core stability nor compensate for short hip flexors.

The way that we run is derived from the inside out, not the outside in.

To ignore this is to invite injury and deny yourself your true potential.

Don't settle for broken and slow. Choose healthy and fast!

Helping YOU Be Great!

Coach Al and Kurt

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We hope you enjoy our podcasts and find them useful for your training and racing. Any questions? Hit us up in the comments, or on Facebook. Let us know of any topics you would like us to cover too.

NOTE! If you review our podcast on iTunes you could win TWO MONTHS FREE on our training team! Click here for details, register below.

Click here to subscribe via RSS (non-iTunes feed)

We're on Stitcher Radio too!

016: Bike Fit With Todd Kenyon of TTBikeFit (Podcast)

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Hello Everyone!

Every triathlete knows the importance of the aero position on the bike, and all the free speed it can bring. In our opinion, no one sets up that bike fit more expertly than Todd Kenyon of TTBikeFit.

We are very pleased to have Todd on our podcast this week. It's the perfect time of year to learn more about the importance of bike fit--and to get proactive about checking out the efficiency of your own set up. It's a great discussion with lots to learn.

In the podcast we cover:

•    The importance of bike fit for performance, comfort, lower risk of injury, and improved run performance

•    Comparisons of various bike fit “systems.” Good fit advice, and getting set up correctly on your bike has much less to do with the “system,” and much more to do with the expertise, knowledge, and skill of the person actually doing the fit.

•    How to choose or select someone to do your bike fitting?  This is a critically important choice, as the results critically impact your training and racing.

•    The important steps of a bike fit process?

•   How we at Pursuit and TTBikeFit mirror many synergies in our approach to working with athletes. Our focus on movement quality first as a baseline of a smart training progression aligns quite neatly with the smart “fit” progression Todd employs.

Finally, on a separate topic, we had to get into what it's like to wear the “husband” and bike tech hat while traveling to Kona with your wife who just happens to be a 4x Age Group Ironman World Champion (and one of our all-time favorite athletes and people on the planet), Lisbeth Kenyon. And here they are working on her bike fit in the photo below. 🙂 You can read Lisbeth's 2014 Kona race report here, and listen to her unique perspective about Kona here.

Enjoy! Hit us up with questions in the comment section or on Facebook.

Helping YOU Be Great!

Coach Al

TTBikeFit Lab

Todd Kenyon and wife, Lisbeth Kenyon, at the TTBikeFit Lab.

We hope you enjoy our podcasts and find them useful for your training and racing. Any questions? Hit us up in the comments, or on Facebook. Let us know of any topics you would like us to cover too.

NOTE! If you review our podcast on iTunes you could win TWO MONTHS FREE on our training team! Click here for details, register below.

Click here to subscribe via RSS (non-iTunes feed)

We're on Stitcher Radio too!

013: Off-Season Training: System Reboot to Prepare For Your Best Season EVER! (Podcast)

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Off-Season TrainingCoach Al and Dr. Kurt Strecker here to encourage you to do a system reboot to prepare for your best racing ever!

How to do a full system reboot, you may ask?

Through specific, precise, and directed off-season training.

In this podcast we explain why the keys to your race results--and your ability to stay injury free-- may very well lie in your off season preparations.

Here are some important points about what the reboot entails, and a few things you need to do:

  • Let any injured tissues you have heal
  • Assess mobility, flexibility and movement quality
  • Address weaknesses
  • Train the nervous system and mindfully practice skills (hint: never take another bad swim stroke!)

Hit us up with any questions here in the comments or on Facebook!

Helping YOU to Be GREAT!

Coach Al and Kurt

We hope you enjoy our podcasts and find them useful for your training and racing. Any questions? Hit us up in the comments, or on Facebook. Let us know of any topics you would like us to cover too.

NOTE! If you review our podcast on iTunes you could win TWO MONTHS FREE on our training team! Click here for details, register below.

Click here to subscribe via RSS (non-iTunes feed)

We're on Stitcher Radio too!
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