General Discussion Triathlon Talk » Cornavirus: What's it mean for me? Rss Feed  
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2020-03-16 6:46 AM

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Official BT Coach
Indianapolis, Indiana
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Subject: Cornavirus: What's it mean for me?

Hey everyone.

Wow! What a crazy few days, right? As you are all surely aware by now, Coronavirus is here and impacting our daily lives in ways that many of us could not have imagined.  While this is being written with athletes in the United States in mind, the general sentiment of my comments will apply equally to those of you that might be reading overseas.

I’ve received questions from a whole bunch of athletes that can be summarized by, “What does all that is going on mean for me?”

Several races where I am, here in the Indiana/Kentucky area, have been canceled. Indeed, races nationally and internationally, across all sports, have also been canceled. The Ironman Group said in a statement, “We expect that there are going to be substantial and widespread event postponements in the coming weeks and months.” Cleary the race schedule for many of you will be different than planned. How long the uncertainty will hang over the race schedule is unclear at this point and largely dependent upon how effectively the government and society, in general, respond to the outbreak. I think it’s reasonable at this point to anticipate disruptions at least 10-12 weeks into the future. However, if we look to China as a guide, and recall that China essentially locked-down 1.2-billion people in a way that is unlikely to happen in the United States, life is just now beginning to return to a more normal routine. That’s 3 ½ months after the first case of COVID-19. That implies we should all be prepared for a lengthy disruption in the race schedule.

I was texting with one of my athletes the other day and he pointed out that “No one can stop me from using my trainer.” I love that attitude! Many of you have heard me say, “Control what you can and forget about the rest.” This is a situation where, to some extent, that directive applies. We can’t control what’s going to happen to the race schedule. We do know that at some point, racing will return. We can’t control what’s going to happen at some of the training facilities we use. It’s highly likely many will close in the coming days and to that end, I just received a text from an athlete indicating the pool he trains at will be closing tomorrow. We do know, however, that at some point, normalcy will return. We CAN control our training. Most of you are preparing for ‘A’ races that won't be held until the summer months. Considering that fact, I submit nothing has changed. Racing will return, and if you are planning to participate, you need to be ready and should continue training.  Training for a triathlon, almost by definition, IS social distancing.  For those of you that are into a build for an early season race – you likely have a very high level of fitness at this point.  With the return to racing uncertain, you may want to consider a mini-break, or at least reduce your volume for some time.  You can easily find yourself in a situation where your fitness level is unsustainable.  If you continue training at the same volume, you’d simply be inviting a plateau.

Here’s a link to the CDC webpage where you can learn the most recent information and find guidelines on how to best protect yourself and your family -

Folks, we WILL get through this. It is a fluid situation that may require constant adaptation, but brighter days will return. I welcome your thoughts and comments.

Coach Scott

2020-03-16 10:12 AM
in reply to: k9car363

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Overland Park, KS
Subject: RE: Cornavirus: What's it mean for me?
Some good insights Scott. I'm hoping my local fitness center keeps pools open and actually I'm a little surprised so many pools are closed. Here's what the CDC has on their FAQ page:

Can the COVID-19 virus spread through pools and hot tubs?
There is no evidence that COVID-19 can be spread to humans through the use of pools and hot tubs. Proper operation, maintenance, and disinfection (e.g., with chlorine and bromine) of pools and hot tubs should remove or inactivate the virus that causes COVID-19.

A lot of my local races happen in July & August so I'm hoping those races still happen as well as USAT Nationals.
2020-03-16 10:21 AM
in reply to: 0

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Subject: RE: Cornavirus: What's it mean for me?

It sounds like you've got it right, Scott.

Last week I read a letter from an NCAA coach to his distance crew.  If you don't know, the college track season has been cancelled.  Next up for them is XC season that would kick off near the 1st of Sept.  Most of these kids are 80-100 M/P/W runners.  The coach is chopping them to 40-60 miles per week (basically maintenance miles with no workouts) and telling them to enjoy the "break".

Sound advice.

Edited by Left Brain 2020-03-16 10:26 AM
2020-03-16 12:57 PM
in reply to: reecealan

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Eugene, Oregon
Subject: RE: Cornavirus: What's it mean for me?
I think the issue with pools is less with the risk of viral spread in the water itself, and more that they tend to be located in places (YMCA's, gyms, community centers), and at this point in the year when most people are still swimming inside, primarily indoor places, where people tend to congregate. In particular, kids may be able to spread the virus without showing symptoms serious enough that parents might keep them away from such facilities if they were available (especially if schools are closed and the facility has kids' classes and child care). The pool itself would be less of a risk than casual social contact and touching possibly contaminated surfaces in hallways, locker rooms, child care facilities, etc. We already had a suspected case at our local Y (who has since tested negative).

Disappointed about the pool, especially as I was just getting back to semi-normal in swimming after breaking my elbow last year and two subsequent surgeries. But it is what it is. I was living in China during the SARS outbreak and believe me, pool access was the least of my worries then. I felt really lucky that unlike in some places then and, it looks like, now in China and parts of Europe, healthy people were allowed out of their apartments to exercise outside and enjoy the fresh air, as long as we did not congregate in groups.
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