Testing My Limits at the Duathlon National Championships

Duathlon National Championships – Bend, Oregon.

Tested the limits big-time. Beautiful city, challenging course, great competition, wonderful time meeting up with old friends and making new ones, and an absolutely fantastic job by USAT, Tim Yount, and the Duathlon Team putting on a top-notch event.

If you can run and ride a bike – make this your goal for 2017. Go to Bend. Test yourself. It will be worth it!

Sunday morning, waiting for my flight home, I met a girl (Kirby Heindel Adlam) whose 2nd duathlon EVER was the world championships in Spain. Now THAT is incredibly inspiring. Nothing ventured, nothing gained.

The opportunity is yours for the taking – why not seize it with both hands!?!?!

I am thankful beyond words for my husband, Jeffery M Sass (most of you know as Elvis), who is my constant support and cheered tirelessly all day for everyone out there competing; for my family who watched the children so we could pursue this adventure; my awesome coach (Suzanne Atkinson) of Steel City Endurance who has put up with multiple texts and questions and always has the right answer; to Raceday Transport (goracedaytransport.com) who got my bike from Spain to Bend so all I had to do was show up at the event and my bike was ready to ride (I cannot even begin to say what a fantastic job they do, definitely worth checking out!);

Bobby McGee – what I learned from him in running was all that got me through that second race (whew!); UCAN nutrition also saved me for that second race, Lynn Greer for the awesome new race suit/helmet/shoes/all my biking needs; to John Lines for all the support and encouragement; and to ALL of you who cheered from near and far – you keep me going!!!! Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU!!!!!!!!Du Nats Sprint Start2016 Kirsten&ElvisBend2016 Du Nats Finish-Bend OR Sass Du Nat Champ 2015
?#?USATDU? ?#?steelcityendurance? ?#?UCAN? ?#?kask? ?#?fizik? ?#?racedaytransport??#?testyourlimits? ?#?Elvis? ?#?ilovemybike? ?#?hills? ?#?lifeisgood?

Kirsten Sass Team USA, Duathlon World Championships 2016

Kirsten sass duathlon world championshipsGood luck to Kirsten Sass, Steel City Endurance  athelte coached by Suzanne Atkinson in this weekends Duathlon World Championships in Aviles, Spain.

Kirsten earned her spot in Team USA by winning last years sprint and standardized Duathlon National championships on the same day!

Kirsten entered 2015 wanting to improve her running form and dedicated herself to both technique as well as training. Running transformation camp with Bobby McGee early in the season set the stage for her to not only improve her form, but also quickly improve her post bike speed and resiliency in run training.

Her “secret” run training included short post bike race bricks. Not simply doing a hard bike ride followed by a trainig brick, but competing in road bike and time trial races (often winning) and then immediately doing a quick 10-15 minute run.

These sessions forced her to learn leg turnover after digging deep in a race effort not just a hard trainig effort. The difference may seem subtle but it’s significant.

Kirstens training also included progressive training blocks that built strength, leg speed, neuromuscular connections and of course overall fitness.

Her run improvements since her stress fracture in 2013 have been from a long term planning arc, and not from a need or desire to hit a specific pace at a specific time in her season.

This is is the true result of process over outcomes…competing with team USA at the World Championships.

Good luck Kirsten!!

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