Essential Sports Nutrition


Trimarni Greenville Camp - Day 2 recap

"Every mountain top is within reach if you just keep climbing."

Unless you live by, in, on or near the mountains, it's not every day that you can get on your bike from your front doorstep and ride up and down a mountain. 

Karel and I consider ourselves really lucky in that we can ride from our house and within 10 minutes we can climb Paris Mountain. In less than 2 miles, we are on bike-friendly, country roads with endless options for riding.

Although we do not do the long mountain climbs very often in our training, it is a nice treat to know that we can climb a mountain anytime we want without having to drive our bikes anywhere.
And if you haven't figured it out yet, Karel and I love to climb!

It was a no-brainer that we would give our campers an opportunity to climb a mountain (or two) during camp. Not only would it provide great stress on the body for our campers to climb (without stopping) for up to an hour but it would also force our athletes to dig deep and to discover new possibilities with their fitness. And because what goes up must come down, we wanted to put those who are not comfortable descending into the position where they had to descend in order to come down the mountain and we would be right there to give them the tips, encouragement and support that they needed to conquer any fears.

The morning started early for Karel, Joe and Adam. The dynamic trio (all training for IM Lake Placid) set out for a 92 mile, 7000+ feet elevation gain ride. I have never done this route before but Karel has done it three times. 

(Picture from a previous ride). 

I have never done this route but one of these days I will test my strength (and mental toughness) and try to conquer all that climbing. 

Our amazing SAG Support (Elizabeth, Taylor, Tricia) met the trio out around 36 miles into their ride to restock bottles. 

Oh the things you will see while riding in the country. 

The guys met the SAG after/before a climb so it was a welcome but quick refueling top. Although we don't recommend athletes load up on fluids/foods before a climb, this was the only spot where the SAG could meet the guys and still make it to the Ceaser Head SAG stop for my group. Lots of logistics when it comes to training camps and we could not have done it without our fab SAG crew!

The guys had a great view of Table Rock before climbing Ceaser's Head from the other side of the mountain. 

Karel was super impressed with Adam and Joe - both Floridians who never had this much climbing in one ride. Adam's body had enough at the top of Ceaser's Head which meant he still did around 64 miles of the ride which was incredible. Karel gave him a pep talk and told him to call it a day.
(I remember when I did my longest ride in Greenville last summer  - we did some of the Hincapie Gran Fondo route and after climbing/descending Skyuka Mountain, I told Karel I was done with all that climbing. I had a little breakdown but because we were still around 40 miles from home I had no choice but to continue. Thank goodness for Karel's pep talks because I managed to get myself back on the bike. We all have those days - we are human)

The guys enjoying their well-earned view!

As for our group, we left around 8:30am (the guys left at 7:15am) and we were off to the mountains. Our ride was a planned 4+ hours of riding and 5000 feet of climbing.
I love chasing the mountains!

This is one of my favorite stops for a picture. You are so close to the mountains and the views are incredible. 

My group was amazing!! Everyone stayed strong and focused for the 7 mile climb up to the top of Ceaser's Head. Everyone finished in less than an hour (yes - 60 minutes of climbing!).

What a view!!

I was just so proud of everyone for climbing the unknown mountain. There were bumpy roads and switchbacks and with the temps approaching 100, it was not an easy day to be riding 4+ hours but hey, if it was easy, everyone would be at a Trimarni camp! 

Great job Jim!! Looking strong!

Way to go Alex!!

Yay - time to go back down the mountains- 7 miles descending!!

Our SAG crew having so much fun waiting for us. 
(BTW - Taylor - front of pic - is our awesome Trimarni photographer. You will also see some great pics from Elizabeth - back of pic. Tricia in the middle was our awesome SAG coordinator - she rocked!)

Yes Elizabeth - we climbed from way down there. 

Our SAG crew earning their post SAG meal - yummy Sidewall Pizza from Traveler's Rest.

After we all finished our ride (we all finished around the same time), it was off for a 15-20 minute run. We asked our campers to run comfortable with good form for no more than 15-20 minutes but the last 5-7 minutes were strong. As usual, all campers were required to have a hydration system with them (handheld or belt) for the run WITH a sport drink.
For the ride, we all went through at least 1 bottle of sport drink per hour. I provided the campers with specific fueling suggestions for the long run and run (and pre/post workout) and no one bonked or had GI distress - well done campers!

After a few hours of resting (well more like hanging out and eating) for our campers at the lodge, it was time to clean up and head to downtown Greenville for our camp team dinner at Roost Restaurant.

Those are some awesome bodies!!! 

Welcome to Karel's world - it's always time for a beer. 

We love our beautiful downtown and Falls Park!

Walking on the Liberty Bridge downtown. 

Thanks Roost for accommodating our large group! The service was great!

We were hungry!! I had the tempeh pesto dish....

Karel had steak. 

What a GREAT day 2 of camp!! So proud of our campers. 
Half way through camp and we only gave our campers a teaser of our challenging terrain and what's to come in day 3 and 4 of Trimarni Greenville camp.  

Stay tuned for day 3 recap of camp! 


Trimarni Greenville camp - Day 1

There's no way to explain how our campers feel on day 1 of Trimarni camp. Excitement, nerves, anticipation, joy, fears......just like race day, there are a lot of unknowns and a lot to look forward to so Karel and I enjoy keeping our athletes super busy on the first day of camp. 

Day 1 started at 7:15am at the Swamp Rabbit Lodge (where our  campers were staying). We had four extra guests for Thursday - Kelly and Meghan Fillnow and Dana and Kelly (local triathletes) as well as our 10 campers. 

Karel and I spoke to the group on Wednesday evening, preparing everyone for the planned ride over Callahan Mountain which included a SAG stop at Hotel Domestique. Several of our campers did not have a lot of experience climbing/descending so day 1 was all about skills. Although we like to load our athletes with volume at our endurance focused camps, fitness can only take an athlete so far on race day. Without proper skills, it's hard to put all that good training to good use on race day. 

It was great to meet some new faces as well as have so many Trimarni athletes under one roof. 

We asked all of our athletes to bring 3 bottles to start the ride and then to prepare 1 bottle for the SAG stop. Although the ride was 3.5 hours, I was not going to let any of my campers get dehydrated or become underfueled during their camp experience. I was super strict with their nutrition and needless to say, everyone fueled amazingly well and performed great!

Around 7:30am we were off and the rolling hills were calling as we headed toward the mountains. 

Karel and I split up the group so that we each had an opportunity to ride with our campers with a lot of one-on-one time. Since Karel and I know our roads, we were able to call out when our campers needed to shift from big to small ring and we spent a lot of time talking about how to anticipate climbs. In our terrain, we change our gears a lot. We can easily go through all gears in small and big ring in less than 10 minutes so there is no better place than Greenville to work on cycling skills.

Our day 1 route was filled with nature so even though our campers had to quickly adjust to our challenging terrain, they could at least enjoy the sights. 

See...I'm not the only one who has trouble riding and not taking a picture. It's so beautiful in Greenville!! Thanks Elizabeth for all your great riding pics!

We had a mixed level of fitness abilities but all of our athletes were training for a half or full ironman distance triathlon so everyone was in great shape. 

We were so impressed with our athletes when they climbed and descended Callahan Mountain. We only had one mechanical during our ride when Adam experienced a broke spoke (which made for an even more difficult ride home) but everyone rode smart and safely. 

Our SAG crew (Tricia and Adam's wife Taylor) met us at George Hincapies Hotel and we had a quick stop for bathrooms and to refill bottles. 

Kelly just got a RETUL fit by Karel on Wed (day before camp) so it was great for Karel to be able to ride with her a little on day 1 of camp. Trimarni camper Taryn also got a RETUL fit on Wed and Trimarni athlete Justine got a refit.

There are no shortage of hills in Greenville and despite the beautiful scenery around Hotel Domestique, our SAG stop was in the middle of a climb. 

We took a group pic, Karel and I swapped groups and then we were off again!

Just keep climbing......

When we returned back to the lodge, it was nearing the mid 90's and it was hot! But that didn't stop Karel from making a shot of coffee before our run. Karel is healing from a small tendon tear in his right foot that happened 5 weeks ago so he was not doing very much running at camp. But there's no stopping Karel when it comes to staying active and focusing on what you can do pain free (swimming, biking, strength and power walking). 

It was great to have professional triathlete Kelly Fillnow be part of our camp as she is not only a super fast triathlete and runner but a very sweet person who can connect to athletes on all fitness levels. 

I required all my campers to carry nutrition with them during ALL runs so everyone had handhelds or hydration belts for our runs. We had our SAG support at the Furman track so that we could refill bottles and keep ourselves cool with ice. 

We all comfortably ran the 1.5ish miles to the Furman track and then started our workout. 

What a view of Paris Mountain from the track! Mountains everywhere!!!

Kelly took us through her favorite dynamic warm-up exercises which was great to learn a few new moves since Karel and I are huge proponents of dynamic warm-ups before training/races. 

After our 3.5 hour ride which included 3000+ feet of climbing, we were all in need of some hip mobility work. 

After our 10 min warm-up it was time for the main set of the track workout. 

18 minute continuous workout
7x3 minutes: Aerobic, IM effort, marathon effort, half IM effort, half marathon effort, Olympic effort, 10K effort. 

There was so much that I loved about this workout. I loved running with others. I loved making myself run slow at the beginning and to dial in pacing throughout the set. I love loops so this workout went by really fast. I loved the push in the last 6 minutes with the last 3 minutes being our best effort.
I asked all of our campers to wear their hydration belts during the run so that they could get comfortable pacing and running at higher intensities with their belts. 


It was great to have Meghan out on the course running super fast and Kelly on the sidelines, keeping us motivated and sharing run form tips with us. We just loved having them be part of our camp on day !

After the workout, we all cooled off and then it was time to run back to the lodge. 

Yippe - the morning workout is done!!! I think everyone thanked their body for surviving the hard workout and heat on day 1 of camp!

We gave our campers an hour and a half to clean-up, eat and relax and then we had an hour for Q&A with Kelly. It was great to have her answer questions from our campers about training and racing as a pro, hearing about some of her bad races and what she learned from them as well as learning about what she does to keep her calm on race day morning.
Her biggest takeaway was that as a pro, she doesn't train more but instead, she rests more. 

The lodge was just perfect for our session with Kelly...although I think some of the campers were struggling to stay awake!

After the Q&A, it was time for a sport nutrition me!! Calculators required!

Because it's not everyday that my athletes and campers can work one-on-one with a sport RD, I had everyone figure out their own fluid, electrolyte and carbohydrate needs before workouts and after workouts. I am finding many athletes are underfueling and underhydrating before/after workouts and with 3 more days of camp, I did not want my campers to struggle with something that is within their control. 

Since Karel is married to his sport RD, he didn't have to take notes but instead, he could cuddle with Campy...who was not impressed with the 5 doggies in the house. 

After I overloaded my campers brains with sport nutrition information (and a few tricks for staying fueled, hydrated and focused without risking GI issues), I gave our campers 30 minutes for a quick nap (as we don't encourage napping more than 45 minutes for it affects restful evening/nighttime sleep) and then it was off to the Westside Aquatic center for a 90 minute long course swim.

I think our campers enjoyed being non weight bearing and in the cool water....although we didn't take it easy on them for their workout. 

Trimarni camp swim:
400 warm-up
100 buoy swim

Pre set: 
16 x 50's w/ toys (paddles, buoy, ankle strap, snorkel) w/ 10 sec rest
8 x 100's paddles  at 80% w/ 20 sec rest

4 x 300's
#1: smooth w/ buoy
#2-3: 100 smooth, 50 strong x 2 (sighting 5 times for every 50 meters on the strong)
#4 200 strong, 100 EZ - sighting 5 times every 50 meters on the strong.

Post set: 
4 x 50's w/ ankle strap "racing" (side-by-side in a lane, racing each other with only ankle strap to simulate race starts and to work on body position with a high turnover). 

Our athletes were rather exhausted at the end so that made Karel and I very happy....
If camp was easy our campers oulc just stay at home and train. 
You can't ask for a better training environment than when you attend a camp.
It's hard to give up or give excuses if 9 of your fellow campers are still giving best efforts and your mind is telling you to quit. 

Our campers enjoyed a delicious pasta dinner (prepared by Elizabeth and Taylor) at their lodge whereas Karel and I headed back to our house to finalize things for day 2 of camp. 

Trimarni camp is so exhausting says Otis. 

Our campers had no shortage of food at the lodge!

Food is fuel!! 

Around 8pm, I went over to the lodge to talk about our big ride on day 2 of camp and by 9pm, Campy let me know that he was so over Trimarni camp and he was ready for some sleep. 

Stay tuned for day 2 of camp - our big ride to the top of Ceaser's Head!