Fact Or Fiction? The Pro Edition

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  • Published Mar 6, 2012
  • Updated Oct 31, 2014 at 4:37 PM UTC
Rachel Joyce at the 2011 ITU Long Distance World Championships. Photo: Jayne Furman

We’ve all heard about the 60-plus hour training weeks hammered out by the likes of Ironman legend Scott Molina, but just how accurate are these accounts of the pro triathlete lifestyle? Top pro Rachel Joyce sets the record straight.

Myth: The pros’ edge comes from having all that time to swim, bike and run.
It’s true that pros train more than age-groupers, but the real advantage comes from resting or getting a massage between sessions while the typical age-grouper must squeeze in main workouts around that thing called life.

Myth: They don’t make rookie mistakes.
Arrive at the pool without a suit? Forget your helmet on race morning? We’ve all been there, and even the pros aren’t immune to making the simplest of mistakes.

Myth: They never take an unscheduled rest day.
Pros are living the dream, so surely they are jumping out of bed every morning, right? Nope. While it’s rare for us to take an unplanned rest day, sometimes they’re necessary, either for physical or psychological reasons.

RELATED – Ask A Pro: What Are The Craziest Questions You’ve Been Asked By Non-Triathletes?

Myth: They’re super fit year-round.
Even the pros give in to the temptations of seasonal splurges. Almost everyone puts on an extra pound—or 10—in the off-season.

Myth: They know the secret formula.
It’s more fun to believe that pros have cracked the triathlon code to training and racing success, but in reality the “secret” is just plain hard work and consistency.

Myth: They handle bad days with more grace and ease.
Triathletes are generally a highly motivated bunch of people. When you lose your mojo, you are probably pretty hard on yourself. It’s exactly the same for pros.

Myth: They go hard all the time.
Yes, pros are fast because they train hard. But that doesn’t mean they train at max all the time. Most know when it’s time to let others get on with the smash-fest.

RELATED PHOTOS: 2011 ITU Long Distance World Championships


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