Five Things NOT To Use TRISLIDE For

What TRISLIDE does for endurance sports-related chafing is what a hungry teenage boy does to a bag of Nacho Cheese Doritos.  TRISLIDE makes chafing disappear!

sbr_sports_trislide

TRISLIDE is a continuous spray  anti-chafe skin lubricant that is all the rage in the multi-sport community.  This stuff seriously is bottled awesomeness.  This non-sticky all-day lubricant is used anywhere you might have chafing…wetsuit neck openings, saddle area, feet.  Basically – you spray and forget!  TRISLIDE isn’t like that gooey stick stuff that other competitors offer; it’s a spray-on silicone that works wonders!  Ever have a hard time getting out of a wetsuit?  Spray TRISLIDE on the outside of the cuffs and ankle openings, and you will literally fly right out of your suit!  You can share this (without fear of contracting some pesky critters or having someone else’s extra “hairs” latch on to your body).  TRISLIDE won’t stain your Tri-Kit, and it won’t melt in your transition bag either.

I’m not going to lie – TRISLIDE is SERIOUSLY slippery!  The product comes with a warning to not spray Tri-Slide on the floor as it will make the floor extremely slick and could lead to falls.

So, with this knowledge, here are the top five things that you COULD use TRISLIDE for – but you really SHOULDN’T use TRISLIDE for…

# 5:  Rusty bolt un-stopper

TS_bolts

Yes, you could use TRISLIDE to loosen up those rusty bolts – and this stuff would probably work as good, if not better, than your trusty can of WD-40 or a massive amount of elbow grease.

# 4:  Personal….ahem….lubricant

TS_censored

Now, we all love some lovin’, but please…..don’t go there with TRISLIDE.  It’s for external use only.

# 3:  Saucer Sled Accelerant

TS_sled

We’ve all watched the movie “Christmas Vacation” and seen what Clark Griswold can do to a saucer sled with his cereal varnish.  TRISLIDE would make Griswold’s varnish look like glue.  Beware if you do try TRISLIDE as an accelerator for your sled.  If you use too much at one time, land speed records could be broken.

# 2:  Hair Pomade

TS_Hair

Every triathlete wants to look great when they leave transition, and who doesn’t like the “slick” look in their hair?  But seriously…instead of TRISLIDE, go to the drugstore and purchase some Dippity-Do or some other hair gel.  Heck, even Vaseline would look good.  Just don’t use TRISLIDE….because if you do, instead of your girlfriend slowly running her fingers through your hair, her hands are likely to slip right off and hit you in the eyes.  And no one wants to get poked in the eye.

# 1:  Flamethrower

TS_Flamethrower

Who hasn’t wanted to light some aerosol aflame and use as a firestarter?  Why not try your hand at a little welding?  Meet a pesky dog on your run?  OK.  There MIGHT be some potential good uses if you could use TRISLIDE as a flamethrower.  But, don’t do it.  Use a can of Aqua-Net Hairspray instead.  Besides, I’m not even sure if you can set TRISLIDE on fire.

OK.  It’s settled then.  Don’t use TRISLIDE for any of those five things.  Do use TRISLIDE to prevent chafing and hot spots.  Do use TRISLIDE to help get out of wetsuits in a jiffy.  Do share your TRISLIDE with others and not worry about some space-suit wearing dude from the Centers for Disease Control showing up to escort your lube away to some quarantined location.

 

Just so you know, TRISLIDE is one of the amazing sponsors of the Rev3 Triathlon AG team.  They periodically send me products to use.  I LOVE their products and would use them even if they didn’t send them to me…they are THAT GOOD.  To learn more about TRISLIDE and other products made and sold by SBR (namely Tri-Swim Anti Chlorine shampoo, conditioner, body wash and lotion) and Foggies (anti-fog towelettes), click on their website:  www.sbrsportsinc.com.

 

Advertisements

Embrace the Triathlon Prima Donnas!

People take themselves way too seriously.  At work.  At home.  On the cricket pitch.  In triathlon-related social media.

Those of us who play at triathlon and who are also on social media often fall into a trap of becoming too self absorbed.  Too often we become braggarts.  We pine for attention.  We pander when we should be praising.

We’re too politically correct.  Too focused on our image.  Often at the detriment of others.  But that’s life, right?  Shouldn’t we look down on others that we perceive as lower than us?

Umm…no.  We should all be issued a Yellow Card.

Take heed all ye heathens who dwell in the land of socialness!  Life is not all serious.  It’s not all about your personal best in the 5k or your uber difficult hill workout.  Triathlon is at lest partially about celebration of accomplishment.

Sure…we can (and should perhaps) talk about our love of triathlon and the things that are fun, difficult, challenging, exhausting, flatulence inducing, or sun-burning.  We should post selfies on treadmills.  Personally, I’d like to post a selfie of me doing sidestroke in my next race.

I want you to think that I’m better than you.  That I’m a better triathlete.

In fact, I’m fat, slow, and often too unmotivated.  I have really poor swimming technique and don’t ride a carbon bike.  I know that I’m not going to bust out a 23mph average over 40k (let alone 112 miles) or drop a 15 minute 5k in a sprint race.  But I recognize that, and try to not take myself too seriously.  I try to not be too snarky.  It’s hard, though.  Sometimes I become a Slowtwitcher and start complaining and looking down on everything.  I tell my son that he’s too slow of a swimmer and that turning a 100 free in 52 seconds isn’t good enough.  Right before I go and drop a 1:40.

Triathlon isn’t about telling someone that they are doing it wrong.  That their seat is too high or their catch & pull aren’t perfect.  It’s not looking down on someone who isn’t in a team kit or doesn’t have an M-Dot tattoo.  I shouldn’t think I’m any better than you because I did an Ironman race.  Hell, I was almost the last finisher in my race!  I wasn’t technically last.  Just close to last.  At least I was faster than a few people.  It had to have been because I was riding on my rented Zipp wheels, therefore eliminating all potential drag from my bike when they were on a the adult version of a Big Wheel.  Or maybe my superior VO2 max.  Whatever that is.

Triathlon is a hobby for most of us.  It should be fun.  People bust their asses to train for a race – they should be allowed to have fun no matter if they are on a $10,000 super bike or a $100 bike from Goodwill.  Who cares?  Be happy for them that they are out doing something.  Besides, the dude riding the $100 Goodwill bike probably makes more money than you and me combined (and certainly doesn’t rely on a homestay at the race).

And while you’re at it, take a good long look at yourself in the mirror.  Chances are that compared to someone else, you are slow, fat and unmotivated.  So while you may be fortunate enough to be a podium finisher (btw, congrats if you are), keep in mind that there’s always someone better than you.  His name is Andrew Starykowitcz.  He’s better than you, and he’ll tell you that too.  And he doesn’t always drink beer, but when he does, it’s with the beautiful people.

For the record, this post is directed as much at me as it is at others.  I’ve been guilty of this.  I’ve looked at others and thought that I was better than them.  I’ve laughed at the gear some folks use.  The brands they pick.  “Is that dude really wearing a Betty Designs kit?  I thought they were only for chicks.”

So now, I’m going to go grab a drink from my favorite nutrition sponsor, relax in some amazing apparel from another sponsor, and go read some blog posts from some age group hacks like me.

Never forget, I may be slower than you, but at least I’ll look cooler!

🙂

 

Huge Announcement: I’m turning Pro!

After months of planning and preparation, numerous high dollar donations to governing bodies, and in depth negotiations with my sponsors and family, I’ve decided that – and am very proud to announce – that I am changing careers and becoming a professional triathlete, effective immediately.

Mrs. Tri Madness and I have recently sold our house here in Florida, and will be moving into a slightly used, 1968 VW bus camper van.  We will be home schooling our children while we travel the country to participate in races.  I have struck an agreement with Wal Mart which will allow us to live and stay rent-free in the parking lots of thousands of Wal-Marts across North America.

I will be competing in 100 events over the remainder of this season, culminating in my entry into both Kona this October and the Rev3 series championship in May 2015.  Both WTC and Rev3 have agreed to create a special professional category to reflect my unique abilities and skills.

Team TriMadness is very excited to further announce that as part of our sponsorship agreements with PowerBar, the TriMadness family will exclusively consume PowerBar product for the totality of our nutrition needs.

In order to hone my triathlon-related skills, Team TriMadness has entered into coaching agreements with a variety of world-class athletes:  I will be partnering with Ryan Lochte for swim coaching, Miguel Indurain relative to cycling, and Meb Keflezighi for running.  Additionally, I will be partnering with renowned physician Michele Ferrari to ensure that I am able to optimize my nutrition and physical capabilities.

I’m excited to launch into this new phase of my athletic career.  Please follow along as I expand my social media presence beyond this blog and Twitter.  As part of a new strategic relationship I have established with Google and Netflix, I will begin hosting a weekly broadcast and update of my race performance and life on the road as a professional triathlete.

Stay tuned for more exciting news!

NormaTec MVP versus Recovery Pump: A Product Comparison

Over the weekend, I received an interesting blog comment.  Actually, the comment was more a question about NormaTec’s MVP system and Recovery Pump’s compression system:

Comment 

What a good question! 

So…some backstory.  In 2011, Team Trakkers/Rev3 was sponsored by Recovery Pump and they supplied each member of the age group team a compression system to use during the season.  In 2012, and again this season, NormaTec has sponsored Team Rev3, and has supplied us with with their MVP system.  I have used both of these systems extensively during the past three years.

You can read a product review I wrote about the Recovery Pump here.

I also wrote an “initial thoughts” post about NormaTec’s MVP, but as of yet I haven’t done a full product review.

There’s an interesting (and lively) thread on Slowtwitch debating the differences and similarities between NormaTec and Recovery Pump (and a few other systems).  Full disclosure – probably half of the posts to that thread are from folks who are/were sponsored or associated with one of the respective companies.

So in the interest of full and transparent disclosure, right now I have and use a set of NormaTec MVP boots that they have provided me with.  They sponsor me, and I get the benefit of using their system.  The thoughts I will share below are, however, my independent thoughts.  I’ll share with you specific things I like about both the NormaTec and Recovery Pump systems, the costs, any drawbacks I’ve noticed, etc.  This is not a scientific study of these two systems; I will not be rendering any input in terms of medically or scientifically which system is better….quite simply because I’m not qualified to to that.  At the end, I’ll tell you which system I personally prefer, and why.

What are these things and how are they different from each other?

For starters, both NormaTec’s MVP system and the Recovery Pump system are mechanical compression devices.  Basically, they use forced air to inflate leg sleeves to help flush waste products out of your cells and back into your bloodstream and lymphatic system so that your body can process those products.  Both systems got their start in the medical industry.  Recovery Pump is a lymphadema press – basically a device used to reduce swelling after certain medical treatments or surgeries.  NormaTec’s MVP system is a variant of the lymphadema press – basically re-engineered and developed to use a different inflation approach than the Recovery Pump.

Recovery Pump uses something called sequential intermittent pneumatic compression.  In English, this means that the Recovery Pump inflates several chambers in the leg sleeves/boots in order moving up your leg from your feet to your thighs.  Each chamber stays inflated as the next one fills until you have a “full leg squeeze” thing going on.  Then all of the chambers release the air, hold empty for a certain amount of time, and then start reinflating.

NormaTec’s approach is called peristaltic pneumatic compression.  They actually named their approach Sequential Pulse Technology.  This approach is a little different in that instead of just squeezing your leg; the compression pulses as it inflates.  The system inflates one chamber and then holds that chamber static as the next fills.  Then, as the inflation moves up the leg, the chambers farthest away from the inflated and squeezing chamber are released.  NormaTec describes this approach more similar to a massage and says that this type of compression more mimics how our leg muscles actually work.

OK, NormaTec MVP and Recovery Pump take different approaches, but do they both work?

The short answer here is, sure, both systems work to flush out the bad goop from your legs and help you recover.  Based on my experience with both products, I have found that I felt significantly better after a long run or ride when I used these two systems.  I have found that using either of these systems helped me recover faster, feel like I could go hard again sooner, and not become fatigued as quickly compared to instances where I worked hard but didn’t use a mechanical system.

My anecdotal findings – and those shared by multiple athletes, professional and amateur alike, is that using mechanical compression devices makes you feel great.  I’m not going to lie – chilling out after a hard workout and using compression like this feels awesome.  It’s like having a personal masseuse at any time you’d like.

So they feel great.  What’s different between the two?

We’ve already talked a little about the differences between NormaTec’s MVP system and Recovery Pump’s system in terms of how they compress your leg.  That being said, there are differences between the systems that aren’t just related to sequential versus peristaltic compression.

The Noise Factor:  I’m going to be honest with you:  neither system is silent.  NormaTec’s MVP is MUCH QUIETER than the Recovery Pump, though.  In fact, by comparison, Recovery Pump sounds like Darth Vader having an astma attack.  There’s a quite pronounced sound as the system inflates, and there a very loud hissing as the leg sleeves deflate.  By contrast, NormaTec’s system really doesn’t present a lot of sound during inflation.  There are some random clicking noises from the pump when it cycles, but overall it’s not too bad.  There are two ultimate tests in regards to the noise factor for these units:  (1) the TV test – can I watch TV while using the pump and not have to blast the volume in order to hear the dialogue, and (2) the sleep test – can I use the pump in the bed at night and not wake up my wife.  I’ve actually done both of these tests with both units.  NormaTec’s MVP wins both tests hands down. 

Feeling the squeeze:   It’s pretty obvious that both of these units squeeze your legs.  One difference that I noticed is that the amount of control you have on how hard the units squeeze is pretty significant.  Recovery Pump has a dial that allows you to increase the level of pressure on your legs, up to 80 Mg of pressure.  NormaTec’s MVP system has seven settings of increasing pressure.  I don’t honestly know what each level means, but I suppose that each level equates to a certain pressure setting.  The bottom line, though, is that I could tolerate the highest setting on Recovery Pump without any discomfort at all – and frankly, there were times where I wanted more pressure.  In contrast, I have never set my NormaTec MVP higher than setting five…I can’t handle the pressure.  Plus, one key difference is that the MVP system allows you to boost the amount of pressure on a specific zone or chamber.  So, for example, if I want additional pressure on my quads or calves, I can tell the system to “squeeze harder” there.  I really like that feature quite a bit.

The cost factor:  Here’s the deal.  These systems are not inexpensive.  Like all things triathlon, you’ll spend quite a lot of greenbacks to purchase either of these.  You can purchase NormaTec’s MVP system for $1750.00 on their website (www.normatecrecovery.com/mvp.aspx).  Recovery Pump sells for $1495.00 on their website (www.recoverypump.com). 

The pro factor:  Let’s face it:  some people will base their decisions solely upon who uses a particular product.  Think Michael Jordan and Hanes t-shirts.  Both of these products sponsor a bunch of triathletes, runners, etc.  For what it’s worth, it seems like NormaTec has broader appeal to professional athletes outside the realm of triathlon…NBA teams, pro cyclists, skiers, Olympians all use NormaTec. 

Portability:  Neither of these systems is small, but ultimately both are portable.  NormaTec’s MVP is designed as a cool-looking toolbox with a handle on top, making carrying easy.  Recovery Pump looks more like a medical device and doesn’t have a handle for carrying.  Both will fit into a suitcase fairly easily – but neither will fit in a transition bag if you have your “normal” race stuff in there (like a wetsuit, shoes, helmet, etc).  I’ve traveled to races with both units before, and quite frankly, if you buy either one of these, you’re going to want to take them with you to a race for both pre and post-race usage.

Which device would TriMadness buy?

Here we are, down to brass tacks.  As I said above, I really liked the feeling that I got out of using both of these systems.  Both products made me feel like I recovered faster after a hard workout or race.  I am a believer in mechanical compression as a recovery modality, and would suggest that if you have the means to purchase one of these products, you should.  There is, however, one product that I would personally prefer to purchase, were I about to spend my own hard-earned money.  That product is NormaTec’s MVP system. 

Why NormaTec?  It essentially boils down to just a few traits for me that sealed the deal:  MVP is quieter than Recovery Pump.  It’s not as disruptive for my family compared to the Recovery Pump.  I don’t have to turn the TV up to be heard over the unit, and my wife can sleep next to me if I’m using it in bed.  I also really, really like the fact that I have the ability to target a specific zone with the MVP system.  I often feel like my quads are trashed after riding hard or going on a long run, so I really like to focus there and have the MVP system squeeze harder there.  I don’t know if it flushes out more crap that way, but it feels amazing, and I feel like I’m better recovered.

Good luck if you’re thinking about purchasing a mechanical compression system.  I think you’ll find that this type of recovery is fantastic and really facilitates getting back at it fairly quickly.  If you have questions about either of these two products, please leave a comment or send me a note via the “Contact Me” page.

A Shockingly Cool Experience!

One of the really cool benefits of being on Team Rev3 is that we get access to some very amazing products.  For example, we’re lucky enough to be able to use Normatek’s awesome MVP pneumatic compression system, we get superior products from Powerbar and SBR Sports (Tri-Slide, Foggle, and Tri-Swim products), and have other great sponsors.  We were really excited to add Biotta Naturals to our sponsor list this year (maker of great tasting and healthy juice products).

Well, this week the folks on the team and I are getting our hands on a new product – and I’ve got to tell you, it’s electrifying!

No really.  It’s shocking how cool this product is!  It will really amp you up!

OK….ok.  I’ll stop with the puns.

The newest tool in our triathlon stable is Compex’s Sport Elite Muscle Stimulator.

Compex

For those of you who may not know what a muscle stimulator is, basically this is an electrostimulation unit that has been widely used in the health care industry.  Compex is a tool to assist with building muscle size and strength, increasing power, active recovery and more.  Basically, electrical muscle stimulation mimics the way your body works to cause muscles to contract and fire.  For all intents and purposes, your muscles act as if you’re working out, lifting weights, or whatever – except that instead of voluntarily firing off (because you, say, lift something), the muscles fire when given a very particular electrical impulse.  There’s a whole ton of science behind the use of electrical muscle stimulation (I’ll get more into that in a future post).

I have been eagerly awaiting the arrival of this tool – and mine finally arrived earlier this week.  Having scoured the materials that came with the Sport Elite unit – as well as other information online – I was super excited to give this thing a try!

And so, last night I used my Compex for the first time.

And I think I really liked it!

I did a 30 minute trial run on my foot to see how this might help with my plantar fasciitis recovery.  I did a 30 minute “active recovery”.  This felt really cool.  I’d describe the sensation almost as tingling – sort of like your foot or leg feels when it falls asleep…but not painful.  It is odd, though, to watch the muscles in your foot move and jump without me trying to do anything.

You can literally use the Compex Sport Elite to help you strengthen any muscle group you’ve got.  Back?  Check.  Shoulder?  Check.  Gastroc?  Check.  Abs?  Check.  Wait…..ABS????  Seriously?

Absolutely! 

On the off-chance that this can help me build a six-pack of abs, I decided to (don’t judge me) try this on my abs!  I hooked the leads up to my lower abs (or as my wife calls it…my frontal muffin top) and turned this thing loose for an hour on “Endurance” setting.  I jacked the setting up as far as I could tolerate, and went to town while watching a couple of episodes of Duck Dynasty on the DVR.  Here’s where it got cool….it felt like I was doing a ton of crunches – but I wasn’t actually doing anything.  Muscle contraction.  Rest.  Muscle contraction.  Rest.  It was AWESOME!

Guess what?  Today I feel like I did about 1000 crunches.  My core is really tired feeling.  I feel like I had one hell of an ab workout yesterday.  How cool!

I’ll be experimenting with this on other muscle groups over the next few weeks, and will ultimately do a full-blown product review.  More to come!

——–

Don’t forget to enter the TriMadness March Madness contest and giveaway to win $200 worth of Powerbar and SBR Sports products!  Entry closes over the weekend – so get on in and enter today!  Click below to do so:

MMadnessLogo