5 Training Tips to Spring into Shape!

May 11th, 2015 - Posted by zoot

It’s time to spring into shape and begin a fresh training schedule with new ideas to get you stronger and ready to race.

Add a little spring into your step with these 5 training tips:

1)   Set Goals

Set one big goal for the spring season training, something to look forward to. It could be training for your first 5k, racing a half or full marathon you have always wanted to do, or reaching a personal best by the end of the season. Keep it simple and stick to what inspires you! Write it down and gain confidence in that goal.

Set mini milestone goals to motivate you to achieve that one big goal you set for your spring season. Milestone goals can be as simple as eat more greens, get 8 hours of sleep a night, take a few minutes out of the day to stretch & strengthen or finish a run a little faster than normal. It is important to be consistent with your goals and reward yourself!

2)   Track Your Progress 

Write down your weekly training in a training journal. Map it out and watch the progression. Write down weekly miles, hours of sleep, and how you felt in each workout. This allows organization to your training and a method to track what works and doesn’t work. It is also nice to backtrack and see what you did days, months, even years ago.

 3)  Mix Things Up

Workouts- A variety in your training can strengthen different muscles in the body and create an overall balance.

Hill Repeats- Is there one hill near your home that you despise walking, biking, or running up? Well, here is a great workout for you. One day a week confidently focus on that hill. Start slow doing 3 reps up/and recovery downhill. Eventually, you can increase the hill reps, allowing your muscle fibers to adjust to the alternative terrain. Hill repeats will increase your heart rate, strengthen and tone your glutes, and most importantly your mind and body will naturally adapt to the hills, allowing confidence to overcome every step of the climb.

Intervals- Interval training is a great way to mix up your workouts. Instead of going by distance, go by time. Set your workout to segmented intervals. For example, you can run 1 minute fast, with 1 minute recovery, 2 minutes fast, 2 minutes recovery, 3 minutes fast, 3 minutes recovery, etc. Intervals are a great way to see what pace is right for you. You can decrease the recovery time to see how well you adapt to recovering. Intervals are a great way to get you fit and in that racing mode!

Tempo- Tempo is also known as a lactate threshold run and is a faster paced workout to help you gain endurance. It should be at a faster pace than your normal run pace and a little slower than your race pace. It should be a pace that you can keep for a longer run and should feel comfortably hard. The more training, the higher you can push your threshold. So how do you find your threshold? You can start by adding 30-40 seconds to your average 5k-10k pace. If you average 8:00 per mile in the 5k your threshold pace will be relative to 8:30-8:40 per mile. It should be a hard yet comfortable pace you can do for 15-20 minutes continuously.

Location– Mix it up with the location of your runs. If you run the same route daily it could easily lead to burn out. Try to run on grass or trail for longer runs to reduce the impact, and recover faster.

Find a running friend– A friend running next to you can help keep the pace of the run honest and consistent. A friend to run with is a perfect way to motivate you and create a positive attitude. It is nothing like a good conversation to make a long run go by when you have a friend to talk to and reach out to. A running friend can also critique your form and help improve your stride.

4)   Strength- there is more to it than just running! 

Body mechanics – Work on the little things to strengthen for an overall balanced body. Each day focus on a part of the body to make it stronger!  

YogaStrength is not only important physically but mentally as well. Take a few minutes out of your day to stretch quietly and clear the mind through meditation. It not only relaxes you but freshens the body for your next run!

CoreThe core is the foundation to running. With a strong core your body can move mechanically, creating less tension in the hips, glutes, and legs. Even if it is 5-10 minutes of core while watching television, your abs can still get a nice workout.

5)   Race More, Race Faster       

April racing brings May personal bests! Do you get the nervous jitters at the starting line? Well, the common cure is to race. The more you race the more confident you become and your body gets accustomed to the adrenaline. Believe in your training and know that you are ready for any race!

 

What Makes a Tri Shoe Special?

April 10th, 2014 - Posted by zoot

When first looking for tri shoes the big question for many is, “Why do I need these?” Well, here is the answer. Tri shoes have specific design details to minimize the time we spend in T2. In fact, we believe so heavily in the need for a tri shoe that we were the first manufacturer to make triathlon specific shoes.

Here is what makes Zoot tri shoes special:
– The liner is designed to be extremely comfortable for sockless wear
– The traditional tongue has been replaced with a single piece upper to make it easier to put your shoe on
– The shoes feature a quick lacing system
– The soles have drainage holes (because who has time to dry off before the run?)
– They are extremely light, so they feel amazing on your feet

Now we hope that doesn’t make you think that our road and training shoes aren’t special in their own right. When Zoot introduced our road shoes, we took all the lessons that we learned from making the most comfortable shoes for the hardest sport on earth, and translated them over to a traditional road shoe.

To find which shoe is best for you, visit your local retailer. We hope you #LoveYourRun!

Flashback to March 2008

March 13th, 2014 - Posted by zoot

Flashback to March 2008

We are extremely proud of our storied past. For this episode of #ThrowBackThursday we are looking at a huge milestone for the company – the release of the first tri specific shoe. Here is an excerpt from the 2008 Xtri.com article explaining what made the original Ultra line so special.

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After years of studying triathletes, and further reinforced by athlete focus groups, Zoot Sports identified four inherent footwear problems specific to triathletes:

Speed of Entry – The need to get in and out of T2 as quickly as possible
Sockless Wear – Triathletes don’t want to take the time to put socks on
Water Retention – Studies have shown that traditional running shoes can gain an additional 30% of their weight during a race
Biomechanics – Athletes run differently after racing a bike

The solution to these problems is the ULTRA Line of Footwear. The initial ULTRA line of Zoot Footwear includes four models in both men’s and women’s styles: the ULTRA Race, an 8.4 ounce neutral racing shoe; the ULTRA TT, a 9.2 ounce neutral lightweight trainer; the ULTRA Tempo+, a 9.5 oz. dual-density midsole stability shoe; and the ULTRA Recovery Sandal, a fully customizable and cushioned sandal that helps reduce swelling and promotes a speedy recovery.