Leadman Bend Course Preview From Local Pro Matt Lieto

  • By Jené Shaw
  • Published Sep 18, 2012

We recruited Bend, Ore., resident Matt Lieto to give us a preview of the upcoming inaugural LeadmanTri Life Time Epic 250 and 125, which takes place Sept. 22, 2012. “I am absolutely in love with this town and am stoked to share it with the triathlon community for this tough event,” Lieto says. “Fortunately this course consists of all my staple training grounds and runs within feet of my house on several occasions.” Below is Lieto’s description of the beautiful course and tips to help you prepare. It’s not too late to sign up!


The 5K/2.5K swim takes place at the high-mountain Cultus Lake. Pristine mountain views and crystal clear water fed by the Cascades, Cultus is at a bit of altitude—4,700 feet—and will likely be pretty cold swim conditions. Being later in the year, the ambient temp in the area could also be in the 50s and possibly 40s when the gun goes off.

Course Tips: Work in some hypoxic training in the pool to get ready for a bit of exposure to altitude and restricted breathing while swimming. You can do this with some sets with a snorkel, or by maybe doing some descending breathing sets in the pool, such as breathing every third, fifth or seventh stroke, or something along those lines. For race day, be prepared for the cold and dress warm (like really warm—I’ll be the guy in the swim parka) and have a race strategy that allows you to build into your effort. Combining anxiety, the cold and a fast start at altitude can be a recipe for disaster about 100 meters in, so have a plan to relieve some of those stresses. Get out and enjoy this beaut of a swim venue!

RELATED VIDEO:  Sneak Peek Of The LeadmanTri Bend Course

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Jené Shaw

Jené Shaw

Jené Shaw is a contributor for Triathlete magazine, a six-time Ironman finisher and a USAT Level 1 certified coach

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