My name is Skip Slade and I am very excited to be selected for a 3rd year as the CCFA Team Challenge San Diego Triathlon coach. I am a USA Triathlon Level 1 certified coach and look forward to working with each team member so that they can reach their triathlon goals. In addition I have been a swim coach and a swimming teacher over the years, an important expertise to have for helping most beginning triathletes. I am passionate about helping people find success with triathlon. Last year as the Team Challenge coach we had 56 athletes race in and complete TriRock San Diego Sprint Triathlon. About 35 of those people had never done a triathlon before!
As an athlete I began triathlons in 2006 as a beginner doing “sprint” races. Accomplishing personal goals one by one, I began doing century 100 mile bike rides, a marathon, 3 mile ocean swims, and Olympic distance triathlons. In 2009 I did a half Ironman and then my first 140.6 mile Ironman triathlon in Arizona. I’ve finished 5 Ironman races and am training for my 6th Ironman at Arizona in November 2013. I am passionate about triathlon and all of its challenges and rewards.
CCFA and Inflammatory Bowel Disease are also a big part of who I am. At age 29 I had such severe Ulcerative colitis that I had my large intestine surgically removed. It was a very traumatic time that forever changed my life. I know that thanks in part to CCFA’s efforts, great progress has been made in treatment protocols since my diagnosis. I passionately believe that continuing to work for improvements in treatment and even a cure are critically important.
Quote: “We limit what we can do by believing our limits are real and unmoving. What if you are a far greater person than you think?”
Team Challenge National Head Coach Dave’s APRIL Tip
If you're planning on running or walking a summer half-marathon, the time to start training is NOW! The most important thing you'll need to get started is a good pair of training shoes, and the most important feature of a running or walking shoe is how it fits YOUR foot. Don't worry what the Olympic Champion wears, and don't think about what color the shoe is; the only things that matter are how the shoes fit on your feet and how they fit your personal biomechanics. (Of course if the shoes fit your personal biomechanical needs AND come in Team Challenge orange and blue, well that wouldn't be a bad thing!)
Happy feet = happy training!
Team Challenge National Head Coach Dave’s FAQ
Q: I’m not currently running or walking more than a mile or two at a time a few days per week. How will I be able to finish a half-marathon?
A: Your coach will design a program for you based on your current level of fitness, whatever it may be. You’ll gradually build your mileage over the course of the coming months until you can walk or run (or with a combination of walking and running) a ten-mile workout. From there, well over 99% of our participants complete their half-marathons.
Q: What kind of shoes do I need?
A: Everyone has different feet and biomechanics. The staff at your local running/walking specialty store will be able to fit you for these needs, as well as your mileage level, and the surfaces on which you train. To find a local specialty store, head to www.runnersworld.com/store-finder
Q: What’s a “GU”?!
A: “Gu” and other sports gels (PowerGels, Cliff Shots, Hammer Gels, etc.) are concentrated forms of carbohydrate about the consistency of honey. They are an alternative to sports drinks and are designed to provide athletes with energy for endurance activities. Each gel contains about 100- 110 of concentrated carbohydrate. Many half-marathons will provide gels in the later stages (around mile 10) to give runners and walkers an energy boost for the last few miles. Although they are generally pretty easy on the stomach, especially when taken with water, it’s always a good idea to try gels several times in training first before using them on race day.
Q: I had to miss three days of training. How do I make up the lost days?
A: You don’t! If you’ve missed anything less than a full week of training, just jump right back into the schedule. If you missed more than a week, talk to your coach about modifying your schedule to get you back on track.
Q: My fingers swell during my training walks. What’s going on?
A: Your heart beats harder and faster when you train, so blood is sent more forcefully to the extremities. Muscle action helps to return blood back to the heart, but many walkers don’t pump their arms very much when they walk (they should!), so blood pools in the fingers. Swollen fingers are more common with changes in temperature, during pregnancy, and when electrolytes are out of whack. Clenching and unclenching your hands, or shaking them over your head will help to pump the blood out of your swollen fingers.