The Next Level Newsletter - November, 2016                       Volume XIII, Issue VIII


Dear Marty,  

We hope your having a wonderful time of the year!




We are finalizing dates for the following programs in 2017. Please check the website and stay tuned.


Lightning Squad Youth Triathlon Team - 8 week Spring and 10 week Summer/Fall

Open Water Clinics - April through August

Open Water swim workouts - April through September


Preparing for 2017 article                                     


Ah, your triathlon season is over, or almost. You get to sit down, chill out, and not train hard for a while. Or at least, you have that option. 


But after a couple weeks of laying on the couch and eating your children's Halloween candy, you start to get the itch. The itch to do more. The itch to be more. More than a candy stealing, couch laying, TV watching blob. The inner athlete in you is crying to break out.


And you can't help it. You start looking for events. Exotic events. Local events. Challenging challenges for you to conquer. You encourage your friends to sign up. You goad your frenemies to follow your path. Before you can say, "Honey, I have a surprise for you," half of your 2017 salary is committed to enrollment costs and travel expenses.


Next Year is upon you.


Half the fun is signing up and making yourself commit!


As you get ready to launch into another season of endurance madness, take a little time to make a plan of attack. Today, we will create a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) analysis of your racing plans.



What are your primary strengths in racing? Ideally, your big/key races will be a play to your strengths. You sell yourself short if you make your most important race a place/situation where you historically underperform. For example - if you are not good on flat courses but excel in the hills, don't waste thousands of dollars signing up for a big, flat event. If you are able to train well in the summer heat, you can find a late summer/early fall race to deliver all the fitness.



What are you not good at? Winter and spring is likely a good time for you to get better. If you have a weak core, start a core program. If you sink like a rock, set up some swim technique lessons. If you have motivation issues, find a reliable training partner or two. While you might not be great in flat events right now, you can work on it and change this - and then spend thousands of dollars signing up for a big, flat event.



What is missing from your endurance athletic resume? What gaps are there in your experience in endurance athletics? You can view these in different fashions. While qualifying for World Championships is often a goal, it is not easy. So, what opportunities do you have or can you create to make this more achievable? Experientially, where would you like to go? You can easily tie in some endurance race with a pleasant vacation to your dream spot. What sort of event have you not done but always thought about? Make 2017 a year to accomplish one of these.



In endurance athletics, our greatest threat is typically ourselves. If you have high motivation, you run the risk of overtraining and injury. If you have low motivation, you easily slide into skipping sessions or falling off the good nutrition bandwagon.  What can you do to keep yourself in line?  Your spouse may be very supportive or completely indifferent. Other obvious threats are unsafe riding conditions, bad coaching, negative training partners, improper gear, not recognizing the stress work/life take on you...and failing to plan properly.


This analysis is a nice, top level, general way to approach a season. The reality of picking a key race and working backwards from that event is the easier part. How much time you need depends on your experience, goals, and lifestyle. In other words, everyone's specific approach is different. 


Read more about SMART goals here;

Off season strength training here;

And more about season planning here.


Good luck and we'll see you at the races!


Marty Gaal, NSCA CSCS, is a USA Triathlon coach. He has been working with endurance athletes since 2002 and is the co-founder of One Step Beyond. He is currently doing planks.





In November


Kathryn Scovel runs the OBX Half Marathon

Lindsee McPhail runs the City of Oaks Marathon

Coach Daniel runs the City of Oaks Half Marathon

Dennis and Angela Respecki run the New Balance Power Run 8k


In October


Lindsee McPhail and teammate complete SwimRun NC

Jeff Roegge runs the Marine Corps Marathon

Kathy Larkin runs the Marine Corps 10k

Laurie O'Connor PRs and 2nd AG at Eno River 10 miler 

Lindsee McPhail 5th OA, 1st AG at Great Floridian Iron-distance Triathlon


Diane Huis 9th AG at Ironman North Carolina

Marian Bergdolt 2nd AG at 70.3 North Carolina

Jenni Barker 7th AG at 70.3 North Carolina

Frank Rexford 19th AG at 70.3 North Carolina

Mike Napoli 6:21 at 70.3 Miami

Tanner Lovelace runs the Tuna 200 relay


Thys Wind 1st AG, 5th OA and Kona Qualifier at Ironman Louisville

Tom Lehr 14th AG and PR at Ironman Louisville

Kory Gray 15th AG, sub 10 in first Ironman at Louisville

Diane Huis: 6th overall, 3rd AG at the Sandling Beach 50

Lindsee McPhail 3rd AG at Sandling Beach 50

Tanner Lovelace 5th AG at NC Triathlon State Championship


Morgan Farrell 3rd AG at Swim the Loop 3.5 miler

Allison Kacmar 4th AG at Motts Channel 1.3 miler

Jenni Barker 1st AG at Swim the Loop 3.5 miler

Tom Lehr 1st Master at Battle at Buckhorn Triathlon

Coach Bri wins the Belt Buckle at Battle at Buckhorn Triathlon

Coach Marty 3rd Master, 7th OA at Swim The Loop 3.5 miler


OSB coaching programscoaching


One Step Beyond offers customized individual endurance training programs to triathletes, runners, and swimmers throughout the year.  Our most popular ongoing program is called Basic Steps coaching.


If you want a great schedule but don't feel the need for extensive interaction during the training cycle, this is the plan for you. Our coaches will create a professional training plan designed around your specific goals and constraints, with adjustments along the way as needed. We use heart rate, power, and perceived exertion targets as appropriate. 


Your coach will be available to you via email, text, and phone, which we check and respond to Monday thru Friday.


The initial interview is conducted by phone, and all ongoing coaching is accomplished through Training Peaks software, email and phone support. You will receive:


- Annual Training Plan

- A weekly schedule with specific daily workouts  

- Group training sessions
- Ongoing email support for all questions (client initiated)

- Ongoing phone support (<15 minute type conversations)
- Race day pacing and nutrition advice
- Necessary adjustments of your schedule
- Regular feedback from your coach
- 20% discount on additional personal training and consulting sessions
- A Trainingpeaks training account


Powerstroke: Speed through force and form DVD powerstrokedvd


Powerstroke® is Coach Marty Gaal's method for teaching competitive freestyle swimming technique to adult triathletes and open water racers. The Powerstroke® DVD was specifically developed for adult swimmers looking to improve their swim speed in triathlon, open water racing, and distance pool events.


Powerstroke DVD


Powerstroke® is:

  • A concept designed to teach the integral relationship between good form and the application of force when swimming
  • A specific drill you can include in your daily workouts
  • A stroke form that will help you torpedo your way to a PR finish
  • A way of swimming

The Powerstroke®: Speed through force and form DVD includes:

  • 40 minute lecture: What is Powerstroke?
  • 25 minute general freestyle swim technique analysis: The three types of freestyle stroke mechanics and how to progress to the strongest: High elbow catch / early vertical forearm
  • 25 minute Powerstroke freestyle swimming technique in-depth explanation
  • 1 hour of seven key drills and detailed descriptions
  • 4 minute stretching and dryland exercise video

Purchase your copy here!



OSB premade training programs are for athletes who would like to follow a well made training plan, but don't require ongoing coaching. These plans can be set so they can end on the day of your A race and include a free TrainingPeaks account.

One Step Beyond currently offers:

Intermediate 16 week Half-Ironman 70.3 Triathlon Training Plan - $79.99

Intermediate 16 week Olympic distance triathlon training plan - $69.95
Intermediate 10 week Olympic distance triathlon training plan - $59.95

Beginner 16 week Olympic distance triathlon training plan - $69.95

Beginner 10 week Olympic distance triathlon training plan - 49.95

Intermediate 10 week sprint triathlon training plan - $59.95
Beginner 16 week sprint triathlon triathlon training plan - $69.95

Beginner 10k run in 10 weeks training program - $44.99


You can review and purchase any of our plans, hosted on the TrainingPeaks platform here.


Run workout of the monthswimworkouts


This month's run workout is a combination of strength and muscular endurance.



10 to 15 minutes easy

dynamic stretching - leg swings, jumping jacks and form drills: high knees, a b c skips, strides



Find a mild to moderate uphill.

6 x 2 minutes in Zone 3-4 (half marathon to 10k pace) uphill

easy jog downhill



5 to 15 minutes easy

Post run stretching - hurdler, calf, butterfly, IT Band, and upper body stretches

Immediately post run is also a good time to do a few sets of planks or basic core exercises.


Advanced athletes could include more hill repeats within the main set, or add a few flat or downhill strides after the main set.


Triangle Open Water Swim Champs TriangleSwim


Open Water logo


The 2017 Triangle Open Water Mile Swim Series tentative dates:


Sunday, May 07 - Jordan Lake Open Water Challenge 1.2 and 2.4 milers

Saturday, July 22 - Little Uno and the Big Deuce 1 and 2 milers

Sunday, October 15 - Hurricane Championship Swim 1.2 and 2.4 milers



The Triangle Open Water Mile Swim Series is brought to you by One Step Beyond and FS Series.


Our Sponsorssponsors



Thanks to the following organizations, that provide service and support to One Step Beyond athletes.


Frank Rexford, Guaranteed Rate


Whether you are purchasing a new home, refinancing your mortgage, or simply considering a home improvement project, I have the experience to help you find a loan that is right for you. And I will take the time to provide clear explanations along the way, so that you will be confident as you make choices about the many financing options available.


My business is referral-based, with nearly 100% of my business coming from satisfied clients, trusted financial advisors and some of the most experienced realtors in the Triangle. I hope to earn your business by not only offering competitive rates and fees, but also by providing exceptional client service. Purchasing or refinancing a home can be stressful, and so my team and I will work hard to carefully guide you to a smooth closing.


office: 919.442.4139

f: 919.869.1510


Clean Jordan Lake


Clean Jordan Lake is a grassroots nonprofit founded in 2009. Our stated mission is to restore Jordan Lake to a healthy and vibrant aquatic resource by removing trash from the shoreline and preventing its recurrence.







Marty, Bri, and Daniel
One Step Beyond 





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One Step Beyond, PO Box 4622, Cary, NC 27519



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