Saturday, March 22, 2008


Time flies. The OAT Winter Camp ended a week ago, and I'm just catching up. The weather was hot in Tucson, making for some solid training. The primary goal of the camp was to put in a good block of bike training, while maintaining swim and run training. We invited 11 junior athletes from Ontario, and 9 were able to attend. We also had up to 6 other Canadian athletes at some of our workouts, from Patrick Kelly's NTC-Victoria squad, who were also in Tucson for a camp. The athletes had a strong camp, with personal breakthroughs and successes for everyone. Once again, we were impressed with their approach to training and recovery, and pleased with the progress everyone has made over the winter. Some random thoughts/comments on the camp:


-First and foremost, a huge thanks to coaches Jay Johnson and Stefan Timms for taking time away from their day jobs to coach this camp - your expert guidance made for a great camp, and we were lucky to have you on the coaching staff.

-An equally giant thank you to Kate Timms and Tonya Ballard (my better half) for pitching in and helping in a million different ways.

-A standing ovation for OAT, for obtaining the funding for this camp, and for providing the administrative support - without the strong commitment to junior development, we simply wouldn't have camps like this.

-Thanks to Canadian Sport Centre-Ontario for the sport science support with our heat protocol.

-Thanks to Alexander and Scotty for letting me have a bit of fun with them with the blog videos - they helped create a great training environment (hard work can be fun), and they weren't afraid to "have a go" at every workout. I can assure you they are far more humble than you'd think from the videos, but it wouldn't be as entertaining to show that footage.

-Finally, our sincere thanks to Gail Richards and the whole gang at Swim & Sports for their continued support and for the killer camp shirts.


-cooking for 15+ people takes some practice.

-grocery shopping for 15+ people requires a lot of trips to the store - we were on a first name basis with the cashiers.

-despite all of the planning that goes into a camp, you can expect the unexpected, like a broken dishwasher, or lifeguards who forget to show up for your pool time.

-a broken dishwasher + 15 ppl + 3 meals per day = reduced recovery time.

-climbing a chain link fence in flip-flops ain't easy, but at least we got to swim.

-having the opportunity to train with athletes from BC and Quebec was amazing - we should do more of it.

-video blog updates are fun, but they take about an hour of editing for each minute of video.

-if Ian Donald ever becomes a famous director, remember that he got his start in Tucson.

-when Simon links to your blog, things like "champ it" suddenly reach a wider audience.

-the funniest moment of the camp might have been during our last climb of Mt Lemmon: the Quebec team had climbed earlier in the day, and were on their way down as we hit ~16 miles. Despite the speed of their descent, someone spotted Alexander climbing, and there was suddenly a chorus of "Champ it!" from the Quebec crew.

-AP was all class when he gave his "Doper's Suck" jersey to Johnny Raz after Johnny (and Lindsay) posted the two best climbs of the day on Thursday.

-Coaches can give all the training, recovery and nutrition advice they like, but the opportunity to observe the habits of someone like 3 time National Champion Kerry Spearing (2x junior champ, 2007 U23 champ) is the best way to learn.

-No matter how hard you train, and how much you think you can eat, you will only rate as a lightweight at the Golden Corral.


We're in for a strong season of racing from athletes right across the country - great news for Canada - congrats to all athletes and coaches:

-Congrats to the C3 squad for dominating Florida's Great Escape Triathlon two weeks ago. Race report here.

-Congrats to junior Connor Hammond, 9th in the elite wave at the Great Escape Tri.

-Congrats to the BC and Quebec athletes who dominated the Holualoa Tucson Triathlon.

That's it for now. Enjoy the weekend, and train smart.

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