Ep. 3: So You Wanna Go Pro? Triathlon As Business, Bike Breakthroughs, and Gearing Up for Race Season

May 18, 2016

Welcome to episode 3 of  “So You Wanna Go Pro” with Matt Bach. Matt has made the decision to follow his dream of becoming a full-time professional triathlete, and EP will follow Matt during his transition from amateur to pro triathlete, documenting what it’s really like to go pro in this sport. Matt currently has a successful finance career on Wall street and has built a very nice, comfortable life with his wife Lauren. Now in order to go pro he has to change (almost) everything he’s built. Lauren is supportive of Matt following his dreams, but Matt and Lauren also do not want to start over completely or lose what they currently have. They want to keep the comfortable life, and even look to start a family in the near future.

Listen to previous shows here.

Quick Updates

  • Boston – able to run 10 miles at 6:10 pace as easily as I did, with bag and taking selfies and video
  • Hip doing better!
  • Breakthrough on bike and in pool last 2 weekends
  • Race schedule adjustments? nope… June 5th – Raleigh 70.3 & June 12th – Eagleman 70.3
  • What kind of run workouts before then?

Matt’s research on going pro

  • Speaking with pros about what it’s like to be pro, and how to make it (Meredith Kessler, Ben Hoffman, Sarah Piampiano, Andy Potts, Cody Beals, Davide Giardini, Molly Roohi). What did these people say, what stood out in their advice?
  • The people that have been the most helpful to me are the ones who treat their triathlon career as a business, which is what Matt wants.
  • Ben Hoffman’s perspective on the economics of triathlon
  • Meredith Kessler & Sarah Piampiano – both came from finance too, and both are now very successful pro triathletes. Both moved to part-time at work, then made the jump. They have both been extremely gracious and have gone above and beyond to share their knowledge and experience with me.

How Matt lives by “Making life an experiment” 

  • Aerodynamic improvements – dropped my front-end, sleeved kit, hydration setup), two months ago went to the A2 wind tunnel to see the data. Found around 10w, still more to go
  • Little things like bottle placement
  • Tradeoff of more aero vs comfort
  • Using the trainer for cycling – one of the biggest breakthroughs. Jared Tootell 2013, then Tailwind Endurance. Discovered what it was like to ride hard
  • Heavy Gear Cycling – HR/Power disconnect…MAF HR = high power. Means you’re fit, legs are the limiter. How do you fix that? One way is heavy gears. I did it in 2014 to great success. Runners typically strong aerobically but not powerful like cyclists. 4x5min at threshold 80/75/70/65 -> 5x7min at threshold 75/70/65/60/55

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