Monthly Archives: June 2014

Wall Lake Pics Now Available

In the sea of black find yourself!

In the sea of black, find yourself!

With its excellent weather, the SDTA sanctioned Wall Lake Triathlon presented by Sanford Wellness allowed the SD Tri News staff some great pic opportunities. The staff has plans to put together a Flikr page with high resolution photos within the next day or so. But for now, because we care so much about our favorite hard-working South Dakota triathletes, we’ve made the pics available at our Facebook page. Athletes can check them out, tag themselves, and tag their friends. They can also print out any pictures they want for free. The staff just asks that in return, they “like” the SD Tri News page on Facebook or follow us on Twitter (@SDTriNews) or do both.

Also, SD Tri News fans need to be aware that we’ll be launching a brand-spanking new, updated, and snazzy site with a much more logical and memorable address (like in the coming week. We want nothing but the best for South Dakota’s best sport. So keep your ear to the ground and your eyes on your screens. We’ll let you know when we move.

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Lousy Weather Abates for Wall Lake

PhotoGrid_1404011401416Genuinely crusty weather dissipated somewhere between Kansas and Nebraska and sometime between midnight and 4am the night before the 2014 Wall Lake Triathlon presented by Sanford Wellness Center, which took place without a hitch on June 28.

All forecasts looked grim prior to Saturday’s race. At times the every-so-often-reliable weather sites called for significant chances of thunderstorms the night before the race and all throughout Saturday. And with similar weather patterns forcing Dakotaman to take a two-month delay, Wall Lake felt a little destined for weather challenges.

Thankfully, this never happened.

All total 98 individual athletes and 5 teams competed in this year’s Wall Lake Triathlon. Though some of the traditional frontrunners were notably absent, the field did not disappoint.

While Michael Martin and Luke Serck took first and second and posted respectable times of 1:03.43 and 1:03.58 respectively, 15-year-old Katie Patrick stopped the show with her third-place finish (1:04.09). Not only did Patrick chick 58 men in today’s field, but she gave hope for the future of triathlon in South Dakota, as did the handful of other young triathletes at this year’s race.

Wind definitely factored into this year’s race. A drafty south breeze estimated with gusts up to 25 mph met participants on their swim back to the beach. It also greeted them on the final few miles of the bike, and semi-hilly run course gave adequate resistance to already tired legs according to a variety of participants.

This race offered an ample amount of volunteers and showed the organizational marks of a race with some experienced and attentive directors. All participants crossed the finish line just yards away from a fantastic spread of recovery snacks as well as a complimentary hefty pork sandwich.

As with all SDTA races thus far, SD Triathlon Association vice-president Mathew Wollman brought vocal support, announcing all participants who crossed into transition. They also gave away two Scheels gift certificates to lucky participants.  This addition to Wall Lake brings a whole new level of entertainment and understanding for spectators.

We cannot help but notice also that having the normal heavy hitters of South Dakota sprints absent paved the way for others to move their way up the SDTA leaderboards. In particular, Brigette Setness bumped her way up to the women’s first-place spot, and men’s leader Justin Schweitzer saw his lead greatly reduced.

Stay tuned to SD Tri News for a link to some great race photos in the next couple days. They will not disappoint.


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Make a List, Check it Twice: Night Before the Tri Checklist

Got Gear?courtesy of Mike Waldner

It’s the morning of the big day. Your first triathlon will be said and done, in the books, in just a few hours. Or maybe you’ll have your 131st triathlon under your race belt in a few hours. Regardless of if you’re looking at your first race or your hundred and thirty-first, little can quell that pit-in-the-bottom-of-your-stomach feeling that accompanies race jitters.

Except maybe a checklist.

Triathletes are known for being type-A beings. They have plans, and they like results. The gear checklist has the potential to eliminate unnecessary stress the night before a race and the morning of a race. Below you’ll find our favorite checklist here at SD Tri News. Feel free to print it off and modify it as needed:

SDTriNews_logo_sans_dotcomBefore the Race:

–Misc Stuff:

  • Wallet, cash, food to eat on way to event,
  • USAT Membership card (if you are a member)
  • Photo ID/License for proof of age
  • MP3 Player
  • Race Information (from Website)
  • Race Distances, Course maps, Maps to location, Addresses, Start times etc.

–Race packet

–Race packet pickup is either the day before the race or the day of

–Race Chip – should be in the packet – don’t forget it!

–Race Belt (Pin the number from the race packet to the belt )

–Numbers from packet

–Helmet and bike numbers (sometimes races have these, and sometimes they don’t)

–Triathlon suit

–Shorts and top

–Towels (2)

  • One to stand on in your transition area
  • One to dry your feet off before you put your bike shoes on
  • You might want one more for afterwards to dry and wipe away the sweat (if you work hard enough)

–Tub for washing sand off your feet (Optional)  I don’t use one – waste of time

–Plastic bag to cover your transition area in case it rains

–To keep warm the morning before – esp. if you know it is going to be cool early in the morning

–Sweat pants

–Hooded sweat shirt/top

–And/or long sleeved shirt

–Misc: Sunscreen, First Aid, medicine, aspirin, etc.


–Triathlon shorts

–Triathlon top if you plan on wearing during the swim (not an option for you ladies)

–Goggles (It is a good idea to have another pair just in case you break your first pair at the starting line.)

–Swim cap

–Most races (outdoors) will require you wear one. If so, you will find it in your race packet

–Ear plugs (if you use/need them)

–Wetsuit (not always required)

–Body glide (This is if you use a wetsuit as it will chaff around your arms/shoulders. Make sure it is a brand that will not ruin the wetsuit.)


–Bike (always a good thing to have and remember!)

–Floor bike pump

–Bike gloves – if you use them

–Helmet (This is required, don’t forget it!)

–Sunglasses (It is a good idea to have another pair just in case you break the first pair.)

–Socks (Might want to bring another pair for longer races.)

–Change of clothes for longer Ironman races – like full Ironmans


–Bike shoes (Clip them to the peddles of your bike.)

–Bottles of water and/or energy drinks

–Energy bars and gels

–Any other food items you prefer.

–Race number for bike ( Should have been in your race packet )

–Bandana – if you need one – typically for longer races


–Running shoes (with zip ties already in them)

–Running hat or sweat band

–Energy bars and gels

–Any other food items you prefer

–Socks (if you are changing them for longer races)

–Race belt / Running Number (Make sure you put it on – and the number from your race packet)


–Dry clean clothes to change into

–Dry shoes or sandals to wear.  You don’t want to wear your sweaty running shoes.

–Soap/towel etc. for showering

–Beverages and food – cuz hot dogs just don’t cut it!  😉

–Don’t rely on the event to have food you want/need to eat

Other possible items / misc:

–Alarm clock

–First Aid Kit (Be Prepared!)

–Tools/bike repair stuff

–1 spare tube and/or 1 tire patch kit

–2 CO2 threaded canisters for pumping up tire

–1 multi tool/Allen wrench set, Chain lube Rags

–On the longer races – you might want to carry some of this stuff with you on your bike.  In the sprint TRI’s if you get a flat tire, well then, your day is pretty much over, enjoy the T3 and focus on the next event.

–A few other items that can help are:

  • Superglue
  • Black marker
  • Rubber bands
  • Scissors
  • Ziploc bags
  •  Tape (duck, electrical,  athletic, clear tape to tape your number to your bike)
  • Spare pins
  • First Aid kit
  • Kleenex, if no TP in port-a-potties


–Blanket – you might as well sit down, kick back and enjoy – but be ready when they come in for the transition!

–Outdoor games that will not interfere with any of the participants while you wait (Football / Frisbee)

–Nutrition for yourself: food, snacks, water (just bring more) etc.

–Lawn chair if you’re getting fancy.

–Watch: To time the competitors – so you will know about when they will be coming in for the transitions

–Cowbell: because your voice will just blend in with those around you. The cowbell, everyone can hear that.

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June 26, 2014 · 10:10 pm

10 Tips for First-Time Triathletes

J - backward -helmetBy Gale Bernhardt | For

don’t know if it is accurate to write that triathlon is “the” fastest growing sport in the world; but it has definitely got to be in the top few.

If you survey people that have completed a triathlon and ask them why they decided to participate in the sport—what got them there—you may get an answer included in the list below:

  • I had too many running injuries and needed to do cross training to heal myself. Once I began cycling and swimming, I realized I enjoyed the variety and didn’t want to stop.
  • I wanted a new challenge, a change from my regular activities.
  • It was a stake in the ground. I decided to make changes to my life and triathlon was the start.
  • I wanted a way to celebrate my next birthday.
  • I was decent at several sports and the idea of combining them into a single competition seemed to be to my advantage.
  • I watched a multisport event and thought the madness looked like a lot of fun.
  • It’s a great way to stay fit because I get an overall workout—cycling and running do nothing for my upper body.
  • My buddies and I made a bet. I say a good cyclist can slaughter a good runner or a good swimmer in a multisport event. My buddies disagree. I guess we’ll just have to test those theories. Bring on the race.

The summer is still young and there is plenty of time for you to train for and successfully complete a triathlon. Need more help?


Here are ten tips for first-time triathletes:

More . . . 

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3 Triathlon Cycling Drills

Mike dismount bikeby Ben Greenfield

If you want some good entertainment, head over to the swim-bike transition exit of any triathlon. There you’ll find triathletes swerving, fumbling, and falling all over the road as they attempt to simultaneously clip into their pedals, steer out of the transition area, and sometimes even eat—although why that bar can’t wait just a few minutes to be eaten has always baffled me. Triathlon cycling requires a unique set of skills in addition to those required of traditional cyclists.

You can usually spot the triathletes in a group of cyclists on the road. They are the ones that swerve dangerously away from the shoulder, obliviously locked into their aerobars, a position that can be notoriously difficult to handle compared to the traditional road cycling handlebar position.

More . . . 

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