Training in Auburn on Foresthill Road

Bike hill repeats on Foresthill road on a Winter morning.  Our elites Dominic Pollizzi, Sydney Lewis and Chase Visser figuring out which Foresthill road they are on before working on their repeats.

It’s About Learning To Be A Hero

A great article written by John Leonard (American Swim Coach’s Association).  From my experience in coaching top juniors I take some very important points away from his fantastic story ~ a story of which I have had similar experiences in my coaching.


Serious sport teaches you how to become a hero ~ you must do things that are hard, you must do things that scare you and you must push through when times are tough,  you must believe much more is possible,  you must keep going and learn how to overcome mental and physical challenges, you must learn how to prevail (which is sometimes called winning or reaching personal records) ~  and all the other things that create greatness.

We are creating heroes!

I do actually coach athletes who ARE training to go to the Olympics and go professional and reach top in the world AND I also coach athletes on our team who are not interested in going to the Olympics but want to reach high points in their sport like National Titles and World Championships.   The lesson is the same as Leonard says below:  “It is the fact that young people need to learn to dedicate themselves to something that is difficult, something that requires perseverance, guts and the daily determination to get your butt out of bed and go out and push your body till it can’t go anymore.”

THAT’S NOT IT! by John Leonard

Last week, we had a Mom come to us and “inform us” that her 13-year-old daughter would be gone for two weeks vacation in late June, maybe another week after that.  Her daughter was not much of an age group swimmer, but she has some endurance capacity and comes regularly to workout at 5:30 am and again at 5:30 pm daily. She works hard, demonstrates little talent, but lots of determination.  Her mother is not athletic and clearly does not value athletics. We expressed our dismay that she’d be missing for 2-3 weeks in the middle of the most important training of the summer. Her mother’s response?
“Who cares, she’ll never be an Olympic swimmer, so what does it matter really?”
This is a dagger in the heart to any swimming coach, and it is to me.
If we only cared about and worked hard with, those 52 people who will eventually, once every four years, go off to the Olympic Games, it would be a small, empty and meaningless sport.

My response was “That’s really not it.”
What is it?
It is the fact that young people need to learn to dedicate themselves to something that is difficult, something that requires perseverance, guts and the daily determination to get your butt out of bed and go out and push your body till it can’t go anymore.
Why do they need to learn this?
Because their lives are too easy, too soft, too catered-for. Too many people carry them, make excuses for them, never allowing them to try to be “heroic.” Is it “heroic” to get your butt out of bed and go swim at 5 am? It is if you haven’t done it before. Is it heroic to “make” 10×200 fly on 4:00? It is if you haven’t ever done it before. Is it heroic to finish your swim and turn around and cheer for the teammate who is even further behind than you are, and is struggling to make the set? Need I say it? It is if you’ve never done it before.
And that is what “It” is about. About doing what you haven’t done before. And learning that sometimes you succeed. Sometimes you fail. If you fail, you go again until you learn to succeed.

It’s not about being an Olympian.
It’s about being Olympian. Learning to be a hero.  And what it takes to learn that.
Or, you can Be Comfortable and teach your child that its more important to be Comfortable.

So, if that’s your choice, I only have one question?
What will happen to your child on the day when they are made “uncomfortable” by life?
Reply from George Block, Alamo Area Aquatics Assoc., Level 5 Senior Coach
Your article really struck home as it reminded me of Robert Reyes – arguably the worst swimmer to ever go through our program – rescuing four of his buddies from choppy, night seas… a hero.  Robert Reyes swam on our high school team and he was always the slowest guy in the race, but he would swim ANY race and go all out, all the way.
He was the same way in water polo. We have seven high schools sharing the same pool, so we don’t have any weekday games. Every Saturday they play 3 or 4 games, 3 or 4 hours of wrestling up and down the pool. Robert Reyes was always the slowest guy, but he would never quit. Even then, the real reason he was swimming was to help him when he went in to the Navy. He had his goal way back then and was preparing back “in Taft High School ” for when his moment came. I told our kids that the famous Olympians actually have it easy. They know exactly when their moment is going to come. They can prepare precisely for that moment and they have a lot of help getting them there. For the rest of us it’s a lot different.
Your phrase to the mother, “being Olympian” hit it perfectly. All of us will have our “Olympics,” when the very best we can bring is called from us. We don’t get to know when that moment is going to be. We have to constantly prepare. We may have no one to help us. No one may ever know.  It may come like it did for Robert, as a physical test on a dark night, in choppy seas, with the flaming wreckage of a helicopter still floating in the water. It more often than not won’t be a physical test, but a moral one — that integrity thing. I tried to explain to my team that the reason they have to prepare every day is because they have to be prepared every day. “Being Olympian.” That is it.
Man Rescues Navy Pals

By Amy Dorsett – Express-News Staff Writer
A San Antonio sailor saves four crewmembers after a helicopter crashes into the Mediterranean Sea .

A San Antonio Navy man came to the aid of four comrades in the choppy waters of the Mediterranean Sea last month, rescuing them after their helicopter crashed into the sea. Petty Officer 2nd class Robert Reyes, assigned to a helicopter combat support squadron aboard the USS Kearsarge, made the rescue June 22 when a helicopter flying a routine search-and-rescue mission crashed into the water. Reyes, 21, whose boyhood love of helicopters propelled him to enlist in the Navy three years ago, quickly suited up for what was to be his first rescue mission. Already feeling the rush of adrenaline, Reyes’ emotions were running even higher because the crewmembers were like family. “Just the day before we flew together,” Reyes said. “While I was dressing out, I was trying to calm myself down.”
Within minutes, Reyes’ helicopter was hovering in the nighttime sky above the downed chopper. Reyes, a trained rescue swimmer, jumped from his helicopter. “I started swimming up to them, seeing if they were alert,” Reyes said. One by one, Reyes helped each crewmember swim to the pickup point, where they were hoisted into the waiting helicopter. Navy officials say the four who were rescued are quick to call Reyes a hero, a title he brushes off. “When they say that, I just think I’m happy they’re there,” Reyes said, adding some of his water skills were acquired while on Taft High School swimming team.

Recovery methods are key to getting faster

WeTri is known for creating top Nationally ranked (and World qualifying) athletes who achieve impressive progress in all three of our sports, Swim, Bike & Run.   I am going to begin blogging and posting all the reasons and  how I achieve this with our athletes in hopes that many athletes, parents and coaches will benefit from some of our secrets on how we make this happen.

Recovery is KEY to becoming faster and stronger.  Most junior and U25 athletes don’t understand how crucial it is.  You must be doing a solid recovery routine in order to make real progress in your sport.   Our athletes spend time each day in their recovery routine because it’s key to REAL progress in sport.   Don’t be fooled by social media of your favorite pro athletes killing it in their sport with little to no photos of them rolling, stretching, doing yoga, meditating (which by the way 80% of them do in some way or another ;-), and sometimes laying around with recovery things on them like Marcpro, recovery boots, cupping and so forth.  The professional athletes in single sports like swim, bike and run or triathlon ALL use most of these methods on a DAILY basis!!

Here are a few of the basics that you should be doing:

  • Rolling and releasing trigger points in muscles
  • Stretching to release areas of tightness
  • Sports massage therapy
  • Sleep (sleep patterns and tracking etc.)
  • Recovery nutrition

All of these are key to getting an athletes faster and stronger!!   The game is simple ~ work hard in your training session then RECOVER hard so that you can do it again the next day.  But recovery does not mean lying around watching TV (unless you are wearing recovery boots) it’s about releasing what was built up in training that day and flushing everything out.

Many single sport athletes don’t make very quick progress in their sport or become injured regularly because of overuse of muscles without enough release or recovery in order to allow the muscles to become stronger and balanced.  This issue usually begins in High School where most athletes are not taught how to do recovery properly.  They are taught to work hard but not the whole picture on how to get faster and stronger.

I have seen countless High School and College Athletes who are tremendously talented, have the work ethic and have reached decent heights in their sport but are continually out with injuries and or have reached plateaus in their sport and some have been full on sidelined out of their sport.  And some simply lose interest in their sport because they aren’t making progress.  Most of it is due to never learning how to do a recovery routine for their body and their muscles that allows them to get faster and stronger.   If you work REALLY hard in your sport you will want to feel and see results but if you are missing a real recovery routine then you will hit a wall in your progress.

All of the single sport athletes that come onto our team experience something really awesome immediately and that is how much more control over their progress they have.  When they start doing the recovery even simple rolling and stretching and releasing of muscles they have an immediate effect on their speed and strength and a new spark is lit on how much control they have over their results in their sport.

Much of this has to do with the generation before them not understanding the importance of recovery ~ both coaches and parents need to understand the importance of this part of their training in order for the athletes to learn it.    The “old school” concept was work really hard and push through everything and get up and do it again.  YES I agree with work really hard and push through it but in between that 24 hour period you must do what is crucial to your muscles and your body building strength and speed and that is ~
Release the trigger points you have built from that day’s training ~ it’s not that hard to do and it’s easy to learn

Release the tightness and flush out the toxin build up from that day’s training so that your muscles can recovery and are ready to build the next day

Eat the right kind of nutrition so that it helps in creating recovery and reducing inflammation so that you are ready to go the next day.  Most High School and College athletes are eating things that actually slow down their recovery.

I will talk about sleep in a separate post.

This is the basics on what needs to be done.  Stay tuned for more specifics as I teach you more on the specifics of rolling and stretching.  The important thing is to get started and begin doing it on a daily basis so that it’s part of your training routine.

Until you are doing a solid recovery routine on a daily basis you will have no idea what you are truly capable of in your sport!  It makes a huge difference in your progress and results and you simply won’t know that until you experience what you are truly capable of by doing things more like an elite and that includes focus on recovery.

WeTri’s CJ Hill-Holeman reports to West Point

Coach Kirsten’s letter to the Team announcing CJ at West Point.  

I am exceedingly proud to announce that WeTri Team Athlete, CJ Hill-Holeman has officially reported to the United States Military Academy at West Point on Monday July 3rd. 

CJ was a close part of our team especially in the year leading into his acceptance in West Point this year and I just received a wonderful note from his parents thanking me for being a very positive influence and part of his life as he worked towards his goal of West Point.
Our team is so special and I would like to thank all of you for being such extraordinary families and athletes as well as a significant positive contribution to each other and the world.  I am proud of each and every one of you as today we celebrate the success of your teammates CJ as he embarks on an extraordinary journey to be a significant contribution to our world.
We are hoping to see him again soon when he’s on break.
Join me in congratulating CJ as he begins his journey at our United States Military Academy ~ West Point.
Coach Kirsten

WeTri athlete Tom Welch accepted to Stanford University

Congratulations to WeTri athlete Tom Welch for his acceptance into Stanford University ~ Stanford is so fortunate to have you with your endless positive energy and awesome life perspective.


WeTri Elites Qualify for Team USA Triathlon World Championships 2017

Team USA longer logo

WeTri Elite Athletes Nico Duchez Sydney Lewis  & Chase Visser have qualified to race for our Country on the Triathlon World Championship Team USA age group 16-19 draft legal.  All three athletes qualified through their outstanding performance at National Championships in Omaha 2016.

Nico,  Sydney & Chase will be racing on Team USA at Triathlon World Championships in Rotterdam, Netherlands this September 2017.

Nico Duchez

Nico worlds photo










Sydney Lewis

Sydney worlds photo










Chase Visser 

Chase Worlds annnouncement photo

WeTri Athlete Angel More completes 20K swim in 8 hours, 19 minutes

WeTri Athlete Angel More Completes impressive long distance swim in Santa Cruz to achieve youngest female swimmer to have accomplished this swim

Angel competes on the WeTri Triathlon Team as a Junior Elite Triathlon racer currently in age group 13-15.  Congratulations to Angel on her awesome accomplishment of endurance swimming 20K in Santa Cruz!!

Monterey Bay Swimming Association:  On September 29 , 2016 13 year old Angel More completed a 20K swim from Capitola to Santa Cruz and Back. She started at the Capitola Wharf, swam 2 miles south (directly out to sea) then west toward Santa Cruz. After rounding the Santa Cruz Wharf and swimming to Cowell Beach, Angel did a U-turn and swam in reverse back to Capitola Beach. She completed the first 10K in 3:25 and finished in a time of 8 hours, 19 minutes. See full report 


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WeTri Nico Duchez Ranked #1 men 16/17

NicoBikeCongratulations to WeTri’s Nico Duchez for taking back National  #1 ranked spot in men 16/17!  His awesome performance at Nationals put him solidly into 1st place in the Country in the USA Triathlon National Rankings.

Nico is on our WeTri Team 2024 (special development program for the 2024 Olympic Games)

WeTri Athletes Tracking For All American

All American logo
WeTri current USAT All American Athlete Rankings Update
Men 16/17  
Nico Duchez (tracking All American)
Konnor Van Worth (tracking All American)
Men 15U 
Josh Cagney  (tracking All American)
Chase Visser (tracking All American)
Women 15U
Sydney Lewis (tracking All American)

Congratulations on qualifying for Jr. Elite Nationals

Congratulations to WeTri High Performance Team Athletes:  Josh Cagney,  Nico Duchez,  Sydney Lewis and Konnor Van Worth for qualifying for Jr. Elite Nationals