Thursday, December 8, 2011

Christmas Gift

Yesterday I went to the doctor for a follow up appointment for my shoulder. After further inspection of the X-Rays and talking with his colleagues, the good Doctor told me his recommendation was not to operate and treat my separated shoulder with aggressive physical therapy instead. I was elated. I almost hugged him but refrained, thinking that might make for an awkward doctor/patient scenario.

To me, this was the best Christmas gift I could receive.

On an entirely different note, I have been asked a few times in the past few weeks what a good gift would be for a triathlete in the family.

Since most of us can't give someone a favorable medical diagnosis like I was fortunate enough to receive, or at least not one anyone should give any credence to, I figured I would try and spread a little triathlon goodwill and make a gift idea list for those of you who may be shopping for a triathlete this Holiday season. So without further ado, here are some products I use, think highly of and would recommend for any triathlete.

It is winter. It stays dark later and gets dark earlier. It is cold. But none of those are valid excuses not to get our runs in. And lets face it, running when uncomfortable... Sucks. So here are some ideas for some great winter run gear from Zoot. The Kalani is a groundbreaking (no pun intended) high mileage trainer perfect for logging the winter miles. This is the shoe I do almost all my longer training runs in. Along with shoes, the winter weather calls for some coverups and the XOTHERM run jacket and tight
will stand up to the cold.

After a year or two of logging countless miles on the road, especially after the summer heat has come and gone, helmets can begin to get a little funky. Not to mention that UV Rays are helmet foam's biggest enemy, next to violent road meetings that is. By far the lightest and most comfortable helmet I've ever worn, the Specialized Prevail will meet the standards of any cyclist or triathlete.
If you have a very special or deserving triathlete in mind, then he or she will be incredibly stoked on a set of these
The Reynolds 66 wheelset is a versatile high performance setup perfect for almost any race course.

Winter doesn't exactly mean no sun. Further, while riding eye protection is a top priority. SPY+ Optics has a great line of casual and performance shades. The Alpha is my favorite from the performance lineup. They combine great looks, fantastic lenses and are extremely lightweight which makes them great for riding and running. The commando kit comes with three lenses for all conditions. The perfect setup.

For those of you looking to fill some stocking gift vacancies, the following ideas are perfect.

Even though its cold, we still need to stay hydrated on the longer winter runs. FuelBelt released its Revenge Series this year and it is fantastic. The Revenge series of belts features plastic molded flask holders that allow for easy one-handed entry. I don't do a run over an hour without one.

Staying in the hydration department, putting in the base miles on the bike will require some serious fluid intake. While I used to think a water bottle was simply that, a water bottle, and all were the same, that changed when I used the Purist. The Purist Hydroflow is an ergonomically shaped, highly flexible, BPA free bottle that has an interior coating that protects from both color and taste stains. Possibly the coolest feature of the Purist is the spout that prevents all leaking or spilling. Just squeeze. 

Since there are gonna be some long rides in the saddle for most of us this winter, keeping the undercarriage happy is paramount. An ISM Saddle will do the job. I haven't found a more comfortable saddle.

No matter how comfortable a saddle is, hours on hours will take its toll unless proper care is taken. And lets face it, even the finest machines need lube. DZnuts, as the name hints, was developed by Dave Zarbriskie, the US Time Trial Champion, who has logged ALOT of time in the saddle. It is the best chamois lube I have found.
Finally, while the winter isn't an excuse to totally slack off. It is a time for a little more rest and relaxation than the in season months will permit. For those triathletes like myself who may not be blessed with the worlds most hyperactive of metabolisms, this means its a time to watch the intake. PowerBar provides a product that is perfect for these times. Keeping hunger at bay with its higher protein content, while keeping carbs and sugar low, PowerBar Protein Plus Bites are the perfect winter snack.
I hope the foregoing list helps some of you out.

If you buy at don't forget to use coupon code IMIKE-S to save yourself some dough.

Happy Holidays.


  1. Great news on the shoulder, and ya that DZ nuts has some zing to it. I use it and so does my husband. For riding.:) Happy Holidays!

  2. Glad you're on the mend - or will be soon with some good PT. Good gift ideas. Still can't quite bring myself to read your crash report ;-) Just glad you're okay!

  3. Wonderful news! Best of luck with the healing process. Great list too.