Jade Hubner is taking on triathlon! Here, her essential training tips. Plus: her #1 exercise for arms, legs, core – and the key to endurance…
We got the training low-down from Top Billing presenter and former Miss SA Top 12 finalist, Jade Hubner, who will be participating in her first triathlon on 1 October at the 30th Freshpak Fitness Festival.
“GI Jade”: proof that anyone can attempt a triathlon
“I’ve always wanted to take part in a triathlon for fun and to challenge myself and say ‘I did it!’” says Jade.
How’s she feeling about her chances in the lead-up to the festival? “I’m definitely just aiming to complete it, not race it. I grew up in the water so I’m not worried about swimming and I’ve always made myself run – it’s a great way to keep in shape. As for the cycling, this will be a huge challenge because, as strong as my legs are, they become putty when I have to cycle. I’m not cycling fit at all! Nevertheless, all the participants are in this together and the sense of camaraderie just adds to your stamina. I’m extremely excited.”
Her training in a nutshell? “Two to six times a week I either do boxing, go to SWEAT1000, run, surf, wakeboard, play touch rugby or go to the gym. I recently added swimming squad training at the gym to prepare for the triathlon. [But I don’t] beat myself up if I can’t fit as many training sessions into my crazy schedule.”
Jade’s #1 exercise for strong legs
Interval training. “This involves quick bursts of explosive movements.” Do it: “Sprint as fast as you can for 30 seconds, then walk for one minute. Repeat this eight times. (Doing it on a treadmill is cheating – you need to do this outdoors!)”
Box jumps. “Jump onto one of the high boxes at the gym – no hands! Slowly build up the height and number of times you do it.”
Jade’s #1 exercise for strong arms
Push-ups! “If you can’t do regular push-ups, still try! Even if you just do one or three, that’s fine. If you really struggle, then change to ladies’ push-ups with your knees on the ground. Each time you’ll see improvements. It’s a process and takes time, so hang in there.”
Jade’s #1 exercise for a strong core
Stability ball pass-through. “Keep your arms and legs straight at all times. Sit up and transfer the ball to and from your hands and feet, each time lowering them to hover just above the floor. Try not to let your hands or feet actually touch the floor – even if the ball is in your hands, you still lower your feet to hover above the ground and vice versa. Repeat until you can’t do it anymore.”
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Triathlon training: the swim
“I’ve just joined the swimming squad at Virgin Active. It’s a great way to push yourself and do more than you would probably do on your own. I find it beneficial for my triathlon training as I’m not always able to train in a dam, so it fits in perfectly with my busy schedule.”
Triathlon training: the run
“I try to go for a run once to five times a week. I generally do between four to eight kilometres each time. I always listen to what my body says, so if it’s been a long day and I need to walk or make it a short run, then I just do that. At the end of the day, at least I did something and that’s what counts. It’s about doing what I can, when I can and being happy.”
Triathlon training: the cycle
“For me, cycling is the hardest activity – I’m not cycling fit! My triathlon coach, Steve Attwell from Embark, makes me do 15 to 20km and he makes me stay above a certain speed the entire time, which is a challenge. We also split my training and go from cycling to running, then back to cycling and running again, so my legs can get used to the transition. The Freshpak Fitness Festival is only 20km, so it’s a nice short ride for a beginner triathlete.”
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Getting down with endurance
For Jade, endurance is about not letting the pressure get to her – and focusing on the fun! “[Because] it’s an event, and you’re surrounded by people in the same boat as you, you’ll have this extra drive and boost of adrenaline, and that always helps. [Also], not taking it so seriously takes off the pressure I put on myself. My goal is to have fun, not to win.”
The triathlon diet
“The more I train, the healthier I want to eat. The two go hand in hand and have such an overall positive affect on your body both mentally and physically – it’s a wonderful thing. When you train a lot, you do get hungrier, so of course you eat more. You just need to make sure you’re eating healthier foods, like your greens and lean meats. The day before the race I’ll have some greens and lean meat so it’s not too heavy on my stomach, and the night before the race I’ll probably have some healthy carbs.”
Jade’s fitness motto
“I always listen to my body and aim for happiness.” Well said!
Looking for more workouts you can do at home or at the gym? Try this killer ‘glider‘ workout… it burns, it burns real good!