From: Marty Gaal [] on behalf of Marty Gaal []
Sent: Wednesday, January 26, 2011 4:58 PM
Subject: One Step Beyond Coaching Newsletter - January 2011
please review
One Step Beyond
The Next Level Newsletter
 from One Step Beyond Coaching
Volume VIII, Issue I
January, 2011
This Month
OSB Group Training
Beginner Swim Clinic
OSB Masters Swimming
Powerstroke Clinic Apr 16
Understanding Lactate Threshold
Old School Aquathon Series
Trysports Triangle Open Water Mile Swim Series

cabinet connection

We had a great 2010 season, with over 600 competitors and many new open water swimmers. 

2011 Race schedule:

May 22 - 5280 Swim
June 12 - Jordan Lake
July 23 - Big Deuce / Little Uno
August 28 - Nuclear Swim

cabinet connection

Powerstroke®: Speed through force and form DVD

The DVD includes more than two hours of video of freestyle technique, drills, and common stroke errors & how to improve.  We include underwater, above water, and freeze frame analysis.

Visit the website to read all about the DVD and purchase your copy today.


Jennifer's Nutrition Tip of the Month

Do you want to lean out?  Eat enough at breakfast. If you don't, you are more likely to overdo it later in the day. Don't have time? Blend up a smoothie with whey protein powder, milk, and fruit.


Jennifer Patzkowsky, MS, RD/LDN offers nutrition consulting and counseling

to endurance athletes. 

Read all about

her services here.


Our sponsored events and teams

Our Sponsors

Quick Links
Dear Marty,

Welcome to the Next Level Newsletter - Volume VIII, Issue I.  Looking forward to spring!
One Step Beyond
2011 Group Triathlon Training

Starts next week!
OSB Group Triathlon Training starts on Monday, January 31!
The standalone program costs $75 per month, and includes a team racing jersey, coach-led workouts, group email support, and a free basic workoutlog training account.

Current One Step Beyond coached athletes are encouraged to join any/all sessions at no additional charge. 

Schedule beginning Jan 31, 2011:

Monday 5pm: 2.5 mile easy run at Bond Park in Cary with strength stations and form drills

Tuesday 1130am: 40-50 minute bike ride - 15 minute transition run at various locations around Raleigh/Cary

Wednesday 7AM: 1 hour swim at Triangle Aquatic Center in Cary including technique feedback $10 drop in fee

Thursday 630am: 45 minute run with intervals at various locations around Raleigh/Cary

Saturday 9am: 60-90 minute ride - 20 minute T-run at various locations around Raleigh/Cary

Times will be subject to change as the season progresses.   Additional group workouts may be added at various times.  Locations for the next week will be sent on Sunday of each preceding week.

Drop-ins are welcome for $5 at all sessions; the Wednesday swim is $10.

Whether you are new to triathlons or just need an extra kick in the pants to get your season going, we will have something for you!

Coach Marty Gaal, CSCS, will lead most training sessions and will be joined by Coach Bri and other local USAT certified coaches.

Trysports Beginner Swim Clinic
Hosted by One Step Beyond

Sunday, March 13 10AM to 1PM
at the Triangle Aquatic Center in Cary


Ready for some swim help but not quite ready for a Powerstroke clinic?  Join OSB coaches Bri and Marty Gaal for this beginner technique clinic!

$50 per person

Maximum 24 athletes

3 hours in length


10AM to 1045AM - Introductions and 30 minute discussion of the basics of freestyle swim training for triathlon

1045AM to 1115AM - Display of basic mechanics, correct swimming technique, and a swim drills review

1115AM to 1245AM - In water practice with the coaches -

            Proper body position

            Proper breathing technique

            The essentials - extension and underwater pull

            Technique drills

1245-1PM: Q&A and wrap up


Minimum requirement: You can swim a few lengths of the pool.  Not appropriate for people who cannot swim.


Visit the One Step Beyond website to sign up today!

One Step Beyond
Masters Swimming
Masters logo11
Looking for a solid season of swim training in the Triangle area?  Join the TAC-OSB Cary Masters swim team at the Triangle Aquatic Center (TAC) in Cary, North Carolina.  All workouts take place at TAC.

This is a year-round program open to all 18+ athletes.

Practice times are:
Monday 545-715AM distance workout 
Monday 730-845PM distance workout 

Tuesday 545-700AM core strength and technique 

Wednesday 545-7AM mixed stroke workout 
Wednesday 730-845PM mixed stroke workout 
Friday 6-7AM Speed workout 

Some Saturdays 7-830AM coaches choice

The fees:
$52.50 per month for all swim workout times, or $6.50 per session.

Click here for all te details.

Powerstroke Freestyle Technique Clinic
April 16, 2011 - Cary, NC

Join us for a six hour comprehensive swimming technique clinic at the Triangle Aquatic Center in Cary, NC.

Each of our 2011 Powerstroke clinics are approved for six CEUs from USA Triathlon for USA Triathlon coaches.

Our 2011 dates, all in Cary, North Carolina:

April 16 - Start time 11:30 (everything back 30min)
July 16
October 22

Our itinerary:
11-12: Meet and greet, Lecture: What is Powerstroke®
12-130: Powerstroke® Swim Practice, drills, and demonstrations
130-230: Individual swimmer filming
230-430: Swimmer film review and lectures: Swim Training for Triathlon and Triathlon Training Strategies and Lunch (included)
430-500: Running drills
515: Clinic ends

Each clinic includes:
- The Powerstroke: Speed through force and form DVD
- a print handout of presentations
- an individual swim analysis (recorded)
- a DVD of all attendees' swim analysis
- a Powerstroke® swim cap
- Lunch

$139.99 with the Powerstroke DVD
$119.99 without the Powerstroke DVD
$89.99 for current OSB athletes or repeat clinic attendees (email Marty)

"Your clinic was just what I needed. I felt myself swimming better in just the short time we spent in the pool on Saturday. Thanks for all the great insight..." - DM.

"You did a GREAT job with the clinic! I'm looking forward to taking the feedback you gave me with my stroke to improve my swimming. I also liked the group setting as many people asked questions that it was quite helpful to hear the answers as they are questions that I have had, but didn't think to ask...The other nice part is all of the information you've given us on a CD. It's nice to be able to refer back and review." - CV

Visit the One Step Beyond website to sign up today!


Understanding Lactate Threshold
Heart Rate Training

Marty Gaal, CSCS


The fundamental concepts for improvement in endurance racing and training involve:

- Increasing your aerobic endurance
- Improving your lactate threshold heart rate (LTHR)

The first is accomplished by completing workouts involving aerobic exercises (swimming, biking, running, rowing, cross-country skiing, and so on) at an easy to moderate effort level.  Over time, your ability to continue the exercise will improve through phsyiological adaptations to the specific exercise.  

For example, if you are currently untrained or out of shape, a 30 minute bike ride may be challenging and near the limit of your ability.  If you go and ride 20-30 minutes three times per week for a few weeks, your body will adapt by; increasing blood flow to the muscles being used; increasing muscle size (hypertrophy); improving blood flow through a process called capillarization (tiny veins to the muscles); increased mitochondrial density (aerobic enzymes) in the muscles; and a few other geeky details.  

All these result in the ability to use oxygen as the main exercise energy source more efficiently, meaning you can now ride longer and not be tired at 30 minutes.

The second, improving lactate threshold, is accomplished by completing easier training sessions like the above, plus including more challenging workouts that raise your heart rate.  

Lactate threshold is the point in exercise where your body produces more blood lactate than it can reabsorb (and manage other lactate by-products - look up "hydrogen & lactate & exercise" if you want some exciting reading) on a continuous basis.  Well trained athletes can usually continue exercise at just below lactate threshold for about an hour.  Go over lactate threshold though, and that time drops to 5-6 minutes.

For most people, the lactate threshold is about 20 heart beats per minute above the steady aerobic threshold.  Any aerobic exercise, generally speaking, will help both points go a bit higher.  But there is a point of diminishing returns. If you don't also include workouts that challenge your system by going just below to above your current lactate threshold, you will not maximize your ability in short distance to long distance events.

The secret or goal with lactate threshold training is to raise your threshold point to as close as possible to your maximum heart rate, and improve your ability to withstand that discomfort (if it was easy everyone would do it).  If you never do harder workouts, then your lactate threshold will always remain below your possible maximum lactate threshold.  

Raising your lactate threshold point, for the most part, will bring your steady aerobic threshold point up with it (as the 20 bpm relationship is fairly constant).

So.  If you're training for an Ironman, from a specificity standpoint you want to train that steady aerobic threshold because that is more or less your race pace.  But. You should include some LT training as well to raise that point a bit higher.

If.  You're training for a sprint or olympic distance race, from a specificity standpoint you want to work more on that 2nd threshold. But. You shoud include quite a bit of aerobic steady training as that provides your 'foundation.'

Blah blah blah, how do I find my threshold and what are some workouts ideas!!?

Finding it:
Warm up 15-20 minutes then 30 minutes "race effort".  As hard as you can go for 30 minutes.  Take your heart rate average for the last 20 minutes.  Bingo. = LTHR.

2 x 20 minutes just below lactate threshold with 5 minutes easy between
5 x 5 minutes at lactate threshold with 3 minutes easy in between
5 x 3 minutes over lactate threshold with 3-5 minutes easy in between
8 x 1 minute well over lactate threshold with 2-3 minutes easy between

2 x 10 to 15 minutes (1 to 2 miles) just below threshold with 5 minutes easy between
4 or 5 x 4 minutes (800-1200m) at threshold with 2-3 minutes easy between
5 to 6 x 3 minutes (600-800m) over threshold with 3 minutes easy between
8 x 1 minute over threshold with 1 minute easy between
*generally speaking, running causes more breakdown so total "hard" training volume should not be more than 10-15% of weekly mileage.

4 x 400s just below threshold with 1-2 minute between each
12 to 16 x 100s at threshold with 10-15 seconds rest between each
8 x 50 over threshold with 30 seconds to 1 minute rest between each

There are plenty of other workouts, but the theme here is:
sub-threshold workouts take 10-25% interval rest
at-threshold workouts take 50-75% interval rest
over-threshold workouts take 100-200% interval rest

Advanced athletes can do more repetitions and/or take less rest; beginner athletes should do less repetitions and take more rest. 

Marty Gaal, NSCA certified strength and conditioning specialist, is a USA Triathlon and USA Track and Field Coach.  He works with age-group athletes spanning the ranges of athletic experience and age.

Old School 2

Next summer, One Step Beyond and FS Series present a mid-week summer swim-run series to the Triangle area. 

Each Aquathon will take place on the first Wednesday of each month in June, July, and August at 6:30 PM.

Dates and locations:
June 1 - Harris Lake County Park: 800m swim - 3 mile run

July 6 - Location TBD: 1500 meter swim - 4 mile run

August 3 Harris Lake County Park: 400m swim  - 3 mile run - 400m swim.

These events are meant to be low-key, low-cost, and a good way to check your fitness against your local training partners.

Entry into all 3 races is $50, or $20 per event.
2-person relays are welcome for $60 for the series or $25 per event.

Read all the details at

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