(Excerpt from "Triathlete" magazine, October 2006)Full Article
Surf swimming. Flailing arms. Mud, grass, roots and logs. Lava rock. Dagger-edged thorns. Desert heat. Neck-jarring descents. Flat tires and broken derailleurs. The XTERRA world championship on Maui presents some awesome and daunting challenges. This year at the Oct. 23 event I saw more than 10 competitors bleeding from at least one area of their body. But mostly I saw white-toothed grins beaming from beneath dirty, dust-laden faces. They would testify that XTERRA adds a fresh challenge to our familiar routine of swim, bike and run.
Coach Lance Watson works with many top athletes, both on and off the roads.
For those looking to tackle an XTERRA next season, the fall is a great time to start transitioning road skills to off-road without disrupting your usual training regime. For the XTERRA veterans, now is a great time to evaluate your skill set while the season is fresh in your memory. Make specific written notes on the areas you want to improve. XTERRA ultimately is about swim, bike and run fitness, but these basics need to be applied to the technical demands of off-road racing. In short, start building you technical skill set now, and plan your winter and spring to incorporate some specific energy-system demands of XTERRA.