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Terminology and Lingo of Endurance Events.

A guide to endurance sports' terms and expressions.

  B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z |

adventure racing - a race through wilderness areas using multiple non-motorized forms of transportation. Running, biking, mountain climbing and paddling are the most common forms, but rafting, canyoning, skiing and snowshoeing, horseback and camel riding, and even skydiving may be used. Races can be anywhere from 3 hours to couple of weeks long. Navigation, self-sufficiency, energy management and sleep deprivation are the key to the success and finish. Competitors may race team or solo divisions. Surprise tests and obstacles are also may be used, testing the ingenuity, skills, and forethought of the competitors.

aero / aerodynamic - equipment design, body position, or movement in such a way as to reduce wind resistance, i.e., allowing greater efficiency and speed.

aero bars - bike handlebars or attached to them extensions that allow rider to maintain aerodynamic, similar to a ski racer's tuck. Positioning your hands and arms out in front effectively minimizes your profile, decreasing wind resistance, while increasing your comfort by resting your upper body on elbows/forearms.

aerobic - an intensity of exercise below the level that produces lactic acid faster than the body can dispose of it. If oxygen needs are continuously met then the exercise can be continued for long periods.

acidosis - lactic acid buildup (see lactic acid).

age–grouper - an amateur athlete who competes in an age bracket (such as Men 35 to 39).

AheadSet - a type of headset that fits on a fork that has a non-threaded steerer such as is found on many mountain bikes and becoming more common on the road bikes.

allen key(allen wrench) - a hexagonally-shaped wrench tool that fits inside the recesses head of an allen bolt or screw (very common on bike's components). Common sizes are from 2mm to 8mm.

anaerobic - an intensity of exercise past the point where the body can cope with its production of lactic acid and need for oxygen. Thus, the high-intensity exercise level cannot be sustained for long.

anaerobic threshold (AT) - the point just below which the body's energy production switches from aerobic to anaerobic. Interval training raises the heart rate at which the threshold is crossed. Also called the lactate threshold (LT).

anti-oxidants - Free radicals are charged molecules that contain an unpaired electron. Being charged makes such molecules very reactive and unstable. By nature such molecules are always looking for a partner to bond with to fill the gap. This can result in harmful combinations of various organic molecules within the body. The primary cause of free radicals is the calorie burning process of various nutrients with oxygen, required for the life of body cells. Over time free radicals are created by calorie consumption and normal metabolism and are then increased by sunlight, exercise, injury, pollution, alcohol, and smoking. Also, many food materials, such as oxidized and hydrogenated oils, can significantly contribute to free radical buildup. Once inside the body, and if not cleaned up by anti-oxidants, free radicals can cause chain reactions over time, releasing tens of thousands more and doing serious damage. Anti-oxidants, sometimes called free radical "scavengers", are various forms of foods, herbs, hormones or other substances that have the beneficial ability to cleanup the unwanted free radicals from the body. Many recent studies have implicated free radicals in the development of many health maladies including cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and even aging. Humans and other animals have efficient antioxidant enzyme systems which require various nutrients properly. Even with perfect health the enzyme systems never are able to completely remove all free radicals and over time the intruders do build up within the body, leading to various age related health problems. A regular consumption of anti-oxidants through proper diet and supplementation is essential in combating the free radical problem.

association - 1) organized entity dedicated to a specific activity, cause, or interest; 2) listening to your body, monitoring its every twinge and ache while shutting out all extraneous details.

attack - an aggressive move designed to try to get away from other competitiors.

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bandit - an unregistered race participant. Someone who races without paying for the race, or without registering, or without a race number.

bar ends - handlebar attachments that fit on the ends of mountain bike bars to add another riding position.

beam bicycle - a bike with the saddle mounted on a suspension beam. Such design provides a more comfortable ride with correspondent saving in energy, although riders usually must smooth out their pedal stroke to keep from bobbing.

biotin - aids in cell growth, in fatty acid production, in metabolism of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins, and in the utilization of the B-complex vitamins. Forms part of two enzymes essential for glucose and fatty acid synthesis.

binder bolt - used to fasten a stem inside a steerer tube or a seatpost inside a seat tube or a handlebar inside a stem. Usually, binder bolts are allen type and often made up of two pieces, one on either side of the clamp.

blocking - impeding the progress of riders in the pack to allow teammates a better chance of success (legal in cycling).

blow up - to suddenly be unable to maintain a racing pace or high intensity and having to stop or slowdown dramatically (due to overexertion, bonking, or general fatigue).

bonk - what happens when you run out of energy due to low glycogen levels and/or dehydration; a terrible lightheaded, dizzy, empty feeling. Also known as "hitting the wall".

bottom bracket - the cylindrical part of a bicycle frame that holds the crank axle, two sets of ball bearings, a fixed cup, and an adjustable cup.

BPM - Beats Per Minute, referring to heart rate.

brake pad (brake block) - a block of rubberlike material fastened to the end of a brake caliper; it presses against the wheel rim when the brakes are applied.

brake shoe - the metal part that holds a brake pad and is attached to the end of a brake caliper.

braze-ons - parts for mounting shift levers, derailleurs, water bottle cages, and racks, which are fastened to a steel bicycle frame through a type of soldering process known as brazing.

breakaway - a rider or group of riders who have escaped the pack.

brick - a workout involving two of the triathlon's components, done one right after the other.

bridge, bridge a gap - to catch a racer or group that has opened a lead.

bullhorn bars - also called cowhorn and time trial handlebars, handlebars especially designed for use in time trial events. The tops are either flat or angle down, and drops turn forward and hook up slightly at the ends, where the brake hoods are mounted.

bunch - the main cluster of riders in a race. Also called the group, pack, field or peloton.

bunny-hop - to jump on the bicycle over obstacles such as potholes, rocks or logs with both wheels off the ground at the same time.

butted tubing - tubing whose outside diameter remains constant but whose thickness is reduced in midsection where less strength is needed.

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cable end - a small aluminum or plastic cap installed to the ends of brake and shift bike cables to keep them from fraying.

cadence - the rate of pedaling, measured in Revolutions Per Minute (rpm) of one foot.

cage - on a front bike derailleur, a pair of parallel plates that push the chain from side to side; on a rear derailleur, a set of plates in which pulleys are mounted to hold and guide the chain from cog to cog.

cantilever brakes - bike rim brakes with pivoting arms mounted on fork blades or seatstays.

carbohydrate - simple sugars and starches that provide a quick source of muscle energy. One gram has 4 calories. Carbos are plentiful in fruits, grains, potatoes, breads, bagels, pasta, etc., and once converted in the body to glycogen, are stored in the liver and muscles. It is the muscles’ preferred endurance fuel, but human body can store only about 4,000 calories of carbohydrate.

cardiovascular - pertaining to the heart, lungs and circulatory system.

cassette - the set of bike gear cogs on the rear hub. Also called a freewheel, cluster or block.

catch air - to jump with both wheels off the ground when your bike hits a natural rise or dip in the road.

categories - the division of bike road racers into groups based on ability and/or experience.

century - a 100-mile ride.

chain - a series of links pinned together that connects the chainwheel to the cogs on the back wheel and allows one to pedal the bike.

chainring - a sprocket attached to the right crankarm to drive the bike chain.

chainstays - the two tubes of a bicycle frame that run from the bottom bracket back to the rear dropouts.

chainsuck - when the bike chain doubles back on itself in the middle of a gear shift and gets jammed either between chainrings or between the inner chainring and the frame.

chainwheel - see chainring.

chain whip (chain wrench) - a bike tool consisting of a metal bar and two sections of chain, used in changing cogs on a cassette.

chasers - competitors who are trying to catch a group or a race leader.

choline - is not a vitamin because the body can make this substance. It forms part of phosphatidyl choline which is an essential component of all cell membranes. It is also called a methyl donor in energy metabolism. In the brain, choline forms part of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, intimately involved in anabolic drive and in memory.

chondromalacia - a serious knee injury in which there is disintegration of cartilage surfaces due to improper tracking of the kneecap. Symptoms start with deep knee pain and a crunching sensation during bending.

circuit - a road course that's raced two or more times to compose the race.

circuit training - moving rapidly from one weight training exercise to another. Sometimes aerobic exercise, like short bouts of running or cycling, is alternated with the strength exercises.

clincher tire - a bike tire whose edges hook under the curved-in edge of a rim, with an underlying separate inner tube.

clipless pedals - bike pedals that use a releasable mechanism like that of a ski binding to lock onto cleated shoes and do not use toe clips or straps.

class - something any competitor should possess.

cleat - a metal or plastic fitting on the sole of a cycling shoe that engages the pedal.

coenzyme Q 10 - a vitamin-like substance that resembles vitamin E, but may be an even more powerful anti-oxidant. Coenzyme Q 10 declines with age and needs to be supplemented. It is a critical fuel used by every cell in the body and especially in the heart muscle.

cog - a sprocket attached directly to the rear hub on a single-speed bike and mounted on a cassette on a multi-speed bike.

concentric - the part of the exercise in which the muscle contracts and becomes shorter. When you "curl" a barbell you are performing the concentric part of the "curl" exercise.

cone - a bearing race that curves to the inside of a circle of ball bearings and works in conjunction with a cup.

cool-down - slow running or cycling done after a workout or competition to loosen muscles and rid the body of lactic acid.

corncob - a cycling term used to describe a cluster of cogs on a racing cassette is there is only the small variation in number of teeth on adjacent cogs. Straight block is another term for a corncob.

CP - Check Point, sometimes PCP (Passport Control Point). Locations on the course of the adventure races through which teams/racer are required to pass.

CR - Course Record.

crankarm - a bike part, one end of which is attached to the bottom bracket axle and the other holds a pedal, whose forward rotation provides the leverage needed to power the bicycle.

crankset - bike components that include the bottom bracket, two crankarms, and one or more chainrings.

crash - 1) exactly what it is, aka "biff", "piling it", to stack; 2) to bonk.

criterium - a mass-start cycling race covering numerous laps of a course about one mile or less in length.

cross-country - the standard running or mountain bike race, in which competitors race over hills, through woods, across streams, etc.

cross three - a bike wheel spoking pattern in which a spoke passes over two and under a third spoke before being attached to the rim.

C-spanner - a wrench whose end is C-shaped, used to loosen the lockring on certain bikes bottom brackets and headsets.

cyclocross - cycling event contested mostly or entirely off pavement. Courses include obstacles, steps and steep hills that force riders to dismount and run with their bikes across their shoulders.

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dark zone - a part of the race course in the adventure races through which it is unsafe to travel at night.

derailleur - a lever-activated mechanism that pushes the bike chain off of one sprocket and onto another, thus changing the gear ratio.

diamond frame - the traditional bicycle frame, the principal structural elements of which form a diamond shape.

dish - offsetting of the hub in a rear bike wheel on a derailleur bike to make room for the cassette and still allow the wheel to be centered within the frame.

dissociation - mental technique of tuning out the pains of the body, by talking to the training partners, competitors, support crews, thinking through problems, looking at the views, dodging the traffic, singing, generally daydreaming.

DNF - Did Not Finish. Refers to someone who officially started a race but does not finish it.

DNS - Did Not Start.

domestique - a bike racer who sacrifices individual results to work for the team leaders.

DOMS - Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness. This type of muscle soreness normally peaks about 48 hours after a particularly intense or long workout or race. DOMS is due to microscopic muscle damage, resulting in inflammation which causes soreness. This process takes usually two days to peak, during this time muscles are busy repairing themselves.

down tube - the bike frame tube running from the headset to the bottom bracket, one part of the main triangle on a bicycle frame.

down tube shift levers - shift levers that are mounted to the down tube of the bike (not a common feature anymore).

drafting - tucking in closely behind another racer so he/she’ll break the wind saving you energy. Drafting at speeds of 15 mph and higher on a bike can save 10–20% of the energy required to ride alone.

drivetrain - the derailleurs, chain, freewheel, and crankset of a bike.

drop - 1) the vertical distance from the horizontal line connecting the two wheel axles and the bottom bracket, one way of determining the location of the bottom bracket in relation to the rest of the bicycle frame; 2) to leave behind another competitor.

dropout - a slot in the bike frame into which the rear wheel axle fits.

drops - the lower, straight portion of a turned-down-type handlebar.

dual-suspension bike, dualie - a bike with front and rear suspension.

duration - how long an exercise routine is performed for.

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eccentric - the part of the exercise in which the muscle lengthens. Lowering the barbell during a curl is the eccentric (or negative) phase of the exercise.

echelon - a form of paceline in which following bike riders angle away from the leader to get maximum draft in a crosswind.

elite - an athlete who has reached the highest level in the sport.

endo - to crash by going over the handlebar. Short for end-over-end.

endurance (muscular) - the capacity of muscles to sustain work over a period of time.

ergometer - a stationary bike designed for performance testing. Laboratory models have a heavy flywheel and are accurately calibrated in watts.

Ester-C® - a naturally chelated mineral form of vitamin C. It allows faster absorption and is pH balanced so as not to upset the stomach. Is an anti-oxidant required for tissue growth and repair, adrenal gland function, and healthy gums. It protects against the harmful effects of pollution, prevents cancer, and protects against infection. Essential in the formation of collagen, vitamin C protects against bruising, and promotes the healing of wounds and the production of antistress hormones. It also aids in interferon production and is needed for the metabolism of folic acid, tyrosine, and phenylalanine. White blood-cells ascorbate levels are increased four times more with ester C than with the average vitamin C. It also enters the bloodstream and tissues four times quicker than traditional vitamin C. Ester-C® is a registered trademark of Inter-Cal Corporation.

expert - the category in mountain bike racing between sport and pro/elite.

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faceplant - to crash.

fartlek - Swedish for "speed play". It's a training technique based on unstructured changes in pace and intensity (a mixture of slow running, running at a moderate pace and short, fast bursts); a variable pace running.

fat - an essential nutrient in food that is also stored in the body. Even highly–fit athletes with low body–fat levels store about 50,000 calories of fat that can be used as energy.

feed zone - a designated area on a race course where support crew can disburse food and drink to racers.

field - a group of racers in a race.

field sprint - the dash for the finish line by the main group of bike riders.

fire road - a road maintained chiefly for emergency vehicle access.

fixed gear - a direct-drive bike setup using one chainring and one rear cog, as on a track bike. When the rear wheel turns so does the chain and crank; coasting isn't possible.

folic acid - considered brain food, folic acid is needed for energy production and the formation of red blood cells. Functioning as a coenzyme in DNA synthesis, it is important for healthy cell division and replication, especially the rapid changing muscle and blood cells of athletes.

flip turn - swimming technique for turning around when you reach the pool wall.

full tuck - an extremely tight crouched aero position on the bike used for maximum speed on descents.

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gels - carbohydrate gels.

GC (General Classification) - the overall standings in a stage race.

GD - Gear Drops. Locations on the course of adventure race where necessary gear for the next section is prepositioned.

GI distress - Gastro-Intestinal condition resulting from carbo imbalances, muscular and digestive tract problems.

glucose - a sugar, energy-producing fuel of the cells.

glutes - gluteus maximus, the large muscles of the buttocks.

glycogen - a sequence of glucose molecules that forms the principal carbohydrate storage material in the body and muscles’ preferred fuel for endurance exercise.

glycogen window - period within one to two hours after exhaustive exercise that refuels the muscles more rapidly than if feeding is delayed.

gorp - a high-energy mix of dry fruits, nuts, seeds, granola, etc.

Grand Slam - to run the following four 100-mile trail races in the US in one summer: Old Dominion, Western States, Leadville and Wasatch. Some alternatives are possible; Old Dominion can be substituted by Vermont 100-miler.

granny gear - smallest bike chainring combined with largest cog, used mainly for climbing.

grape seed extract - a very powerful anti-oxidant that enhances immunity, protects against pollution and cancer formation, and is needed for epithelial tissue maintenance and repair. Research has documented its ability to neutralize the free radicals created by exercise.

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hammer - to race hard, to jam, to rock-n-roll. Opposite is to "get hammered" by a stronger rider.

hamstring - the large muscles of the back of the upper leg.

hand paddle - training aid used to improve your swimming stroke.

hanging in - barely maintaining contact at the back of the pack.

headset - the parts at the top and bottom of the bike frame's head tube, into which the handlebar stem and fork are fitted.

heart–rate monitor (also HRM) - an electronic device that tells you your current heart rate by means of a chest strap with electrodes and a receiving device worn on the wrist.

hill climb - an event contested from bottom to top of a significant vertical challenge, on road or off.

"hitting the wall" - the dreaded point (and awful feeling similar to what your body would feel like if you ran into a wall) during a race/training when your muscle glycogen stores become depleted and a feeling of fatigue engulfs you.

honking - standing out of saddle on the bike while climbing.

hybrid - a cross between a road bike and a mountain bike. Not as fast or efficient or usable, not well-suited for any events.

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IM - Individual Medley of four swimming strokes, done in this order: butterfly, backstroke, breaststroke, freestyle.

IMBA - International Mountain Bicycling Association, a nonprofit outfit that seeks to preserve or expand trail access for cyclists.

inositol - helps to prevent hardening of the arteries and is important in the formation of lecithin, removal of fat from the liver, as well as metabolizing cholesterol.

interval - time allowed to complete a training repetition.

interval training - a structured method of training that alternates relatively short, hard efforts with recovery periods of much easier intensity.

ironman - triathlon race distance consisting of 2.4–mile swim, 112–mile bike and 26.2–mile run. Also copyright of Ironman Triathlon Hawaii organization.

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jam - a period of hard, fast riding.

JRA - Just Riding Along. Bike–industry expression for dubious but common customer claim: "I was JRA when my bike broke in half".

jump - a quick, hard acceleration.

junk miles - runs and biking at an easy pace inserted into a program in order to reach a weekly or monthly milage total rather than for any specific benefit. Despite the name, "junk miles" often serve as recovery from harder workouts. The value of "junk miles" is still debated among training theorists.

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kickboard - a floatation training aid held in your hands while practicing your swimming kick.

Kona - location of Hawaii Ironman world championship.

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lactic acid - a byproduct of anaerobic exercise that accumulates in the muscles, causing pain and fatigue. "Lactic acid buildup (technically called acidosis) can cause burning pain, especially in untrained muscles. Lactic acid accumulation can lead to muscle exhaustion within seconds if the blood cannot clear it away. A strategy for dealing with lactic acid buildup is to relax the muscles at every opportunity, so that the circulating blood can carry the lactic acid away and bring oxygen to support aerobic metabolism. ...much of the lactic acid is routed to the liver, where it is converted to glucose. A little lactic acid remains in muscle tissue, where it is completely oxidized when the oxygen supply is once again sufficient." Understanding Nutrition, 5th ed., Whitney, Hamilton, Rolfes, West Publishing Co. 1990, pg 402-403.

lactate threshhold - level of intensity that can be maintained for 30 minutes to an hour before blood lactate builds to such an extent that it can’t be eliminated faster than it’s accumulated. Sometimes called "anaerobic threshold" or OBLA (onset of blood lactate).

leadout - a bike race tactic in which a rider accelerates to maximum speed for the benefit of a teammate in tow. The second rider then leaves the draft and sprints past at even greater speed to win the race or prime.

light zone - a part of the race course of adventure race that is unsafe to travel in the daylight (a glacier, hazardous snow area).

LSD - Long Slow (also, Steady) Distance. A training technique which refers to the practice of running longer distances at an "easy" pace rather than shorter ones to exhaustion. The slower pace allows the runner to go longer and therefore (supposedly) gain more fitness.

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magnesium aspartate - vital to enzyme activity, it assists in calcium and potassium uptake. This essential mineral protects the arterial lining from stress caused by sudden blood pressure changes, plays a role in the formation of bone s well as in carbohydrate and mineral metabolism.

maltodextrin - a complex carbohydrate that digests slowly to supply energy to the body over several hours.

marathon - 26.2 mile running race. According to legend, in 490 B.C., a Greek soldier name Phidippides ran the distance from the site of the battle of Marathon to Athens, where he died after the Greek victory over the Persians.

mass start - events such as road races, criteriums and cross-country races in which all contestants leave the starting line at the same time.

master - an athlete 40 years of age or older is designated a "master" in the U.S. Many other countries use the term "veteran".

Masters - an organized, coached fitness swim team / club for adults.

maximal oxygen consumption (VO2 max) - the maximum amount of oxygen a person can consume in one minute. It is basically determined by heredity and indicates a person's potential in endurance sports.

maytagged - to be thrown out of whitewater raft into the powerful hydraulics of rapids.

metric century - a 100-kilometer ride (62 miles).

"metric mile" = 1500m, the international racing distance closest to the imperial mile.

mile = 1609 meters = 5280 feet = 760 yards.

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negative splits - racing the second half of a race faster than the first half.

niacinamide - aids in the functioning of the nervous system, promotes metabolism of carbohydrates, fats, and protein, and in the production of hydrochloric acid for the digestive system. Also key to strong blood circulation.

NORBA - National Off Road Bicycling Association, the governing body of off-road racing in America. A division of USA Cycling.

NR - National Record

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off-camber turn - the surface slopes sway from the curve, making it difficult and dangerous to go through with speed.

off the back - describes racer who have failed to keep pace with the main group.

olympic distance - triathlon race distance consisting of 1.5–kilometer (0.9–mile) swim, 40km (24.8–mile) bike and 10km (6.2–mile) run.

orthotics - custom-made supports worn in shoes to help neutralize biomechanical imbalances in the feet or legs.

outsole - the material on the bottom of most shoes running / cycling shoes; usually made of hard carbon rubber in running shoes and hard plastics in cycling shoes.

over distance - a training concept of going longer than the anticipated distance of an event.

overload - performing more exercise than you are accustomed to (usually in weight training). Overload results in the muscle's adaptation to the stress by a gain in strength and cross sectional diameter.

overpronation - the excessive inward roll of the foot before toe-off. Overpronation is believed to be the cause of many running injuries.

overtraining - declining performance and deep-seated fatigue, both physical and mental, caused by excessive training loads, high stress levels and carbohydrate consumption insufficient to fuel continious performance.

oxygen debt - the amount of oxygen that needs to be consumed to pay back the deficit incurred by anaerobic work.

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PABA - one of the basic constituents of folic acid, it also helps in the utilization of pantothenic acid. As an antioxidant, it acts as a coenzyme in the breakdown and utilization of protein and assists in the formation of red blood cells.

paceline - a group formation in which each bike rider takes a turn breaking the wind at the front before pulling off, dropping to the rear position, and riding the others' draft until at the front once again.

pantothenic acid, pantothenate - belongs to the B-complex of water-soluble vitamins with multiple roles in energy metabolism. It forms part of the important coenzyme A and part of the protein for the enzyme fatty acid synthetase. It is necessary for making of glucose and fatty acids, the main fuels of the body. It is also essential for making steroid hormones and brain neurotransmitters.

passport - multipage book that participants/teams in adventure race must carry throughout the race. The passport must be signed and time stamped at each PC/PCP. Loss of passport results in a DQ.

PC (also PCP) - Passport Control Points. Locations on the race course of adventure race through which racer/teams are required to pass.

peak - a time period during which maximum performance is achieved.

peloton - the main group of bike riders in a race.

periodization - a training plan based on training different types of fitness at different times of the year.

pick-ups - accelerations done during a run, normally done in shorter durations than fartleks.

plyometrics - bounding exercises; any jumping exercise in which landing followed by a jump occurs.

PB - Personal Best.

potassium citrate - important for chemical reactions within the cells, it aids in maintaining stable blood pressure and in transmitting electrochemical impulses. I t also regulates the transfer of nutrients to the cells. This mineral is important for a healthy nervous system and a regular heart rhythm. It aids in proper muscle contractions and works with sodium to control the body's water balance.

PR - Personal Record.

pronation - a normal and necessary motion for walking or running, begins immediately after the heel contacts the ground. Pronation is the distinctive, inward roll of the foot as the arch collapses.

protein - an essential nutrient found in meat, dairy products and grains.

prime - a special award given to the leader on selected laps during a criterium or track bike race, or the first rider to reach a certain landmark in a road race. Pronounced "preem.".

privateer - an unsponsored racer.

pro - a racer who makes a living from his or her ability to win races and endorse products.

pull - 1. take a turn at the front of the bike riders pack; 2. a swimming drill in which you use only your arms (typically done with a pull buoy between your legs.

pull off - to move to the side after riding in the lead so that another bike rider can come to the front.

pusher - a bike rider who pedals in a large gear at a relatively slow cadence, relying on the gear size for speed.

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quadriceps - the large muscle on the front of the upper leg.

quick-release skewer - the shaft of a quick-release mechanism that goes through the wheel axle or seat clamp and connects the cam-lever on one side with the adjusting nut on the other.

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rabbit - also a hare. A racer who deliberately sets a fast pace early in a race.

RD - Race Director.

RDI - Recommended Daily Intake. On January 1, 1997, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) began phasing in new labeling requirements - which are now official. One of the changes that has caused some confusion is the switch from Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) to Recommended Daily Intake (RDI). Also, Vitamin and Mineral listings on the labels are now followed by Percentage of Daily Value (%DV). The following is a list of vitamin and minerals with their RDI's: Vitamin A - 5,000 IU*, Biotin - 300 mcg, Vitamin C - 6O mg, Pantothenic acid - 10mg, Calcium - 1000 mg, Phosphorus - 1000 mg, Iron - 18 mg, Iodine - 150 mcg, Vitamin D - 400 IU, Magnesium - 400 mg, Vitamin E - 30 IU, Zinc - 15 mg, Vitamin K - 80 mcg, Selenium - 70 mcg, Thiamin - 1.5 mg, Copper - 2.0 mg, Riboflavin - 1.7 mg, Manganese - 2.0 mg, Niacin - 20 mg, Chromium - 120 mcg, Vitamin B6 - 2.0 mg, Molybdenum - 75 mcg, Folate (Folic Acid) - 400 mcg, Chloride - 3,400 mg, Vitamin B12 - 6 mcg. (IU = International Units; mcg = micrograms; mg = milligrams; *Vitamin A is also measured in RE's: 1 RE equals 3.33 International Units (IU) of retinol (active vitamin A) equals 10 IU's of beta-carotene.)

repetition, reps - 1. each hard effort / distance repeat in the interval workout; 2. one complete movement in a weight-training exercise (repetitions of a specific movement within a group of exercises called a set).

resistance training - to work against resistance to build strength. The resistance can come from weights and other training devices, gravity, wind or rolling resistance in cycling.

retrogrouch - someone who is slow to accept new technology.

road race - a mass-start bike- or running race that goes from point to point or covers one large loop on the surfaced roads.

road rash - any skin abrasion resulting from falling off and sliding on the road or dirt.

roadie - a cyclist who prefers road riding, on a road bike, as opposed to a mountain biker.

rollers - 1) an indoor training device that works like a treadmill for bikes; 2) a series of short hills.

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saddle sores - skin condition in the crotch that develop from chafing caused by pedaling action. Sores can range from tender raw spots to boil-like lesions if infection occurs.

saddle time - time spent cycling.

sag wagon - a motor vehicle that follows a group of racers, carrying equipment and lending assistance in the event of difficulty. Also called the broom wagon.

sandbagger - a bike racer who stays in an easier category instead of moving up. USA Cycling rules mandate an upgrade after a certain number of top finishes.

set - a series of repetitions of a specific movement or exercise.

shin splints - an injury to the muscle on the inside of the flat shin bone.

singletrack - a narrow path or trail.

sit on a wheel - to ride in someone's draft.

slingshot - to sprint past another rider after catching up in the draft.

slipstream - the pocket of calmer air behind a moving rider. Also called the draft. Also, in a lesser degree, present in running and aquatic sports.

snakebite - a type of bike inner–tube puncture characterized by two small adjacent holes. Typically caused by hitting a curb, pothole, rock, and caused by underinflated tires.

soft-pedal - to rotate the bike crank without actually applying power.

specificity - the law of athletic training that says you get good at those things you practice.

speedwork - a series of short, fast efforts aimed at developing speed.

spin - to pedal at high cadence.

spinner - a bike rider who pedals in a moderate gear at a relatively fast cadence, relying on pedal rpm for speed.

spinning - 1. pedaling rapidly and smoothly; 2. an indoor cycling workout.

splits - refers to times at mile markers or any other pre-planned checkpoints along the race / training route.

sprint distance - triathlon race distance consisting of .75km (0.5–mile) swim, 22km (13–mile) bike and 5km (3.1–mile) run.

squirrel - a squiggly, nervous or unstable bike rider who can't be trusted to maintain a steady line.

stage race - a multi-day event consisting of point-to-point and circuit races. The winner is the racer with the lowest elapsed time for all stages.

stevia - is a natural plant extract used as a dietary supplement, and it is considered to have some effect in controlling blood sugar levels.

straight block - a bicycle rear wheel cassette with cogs that increase in size in one-tooth increments.

strength (muscular) - the maximum amount of power that a muscle group can produce in a single contraction.

strides - short, fast but controlled runs of 50 to 150 meters, used both in training and to warm up before a race, build speed and efficiency.

supination - the opposite of pronation. It's an outward rolling of the forefoot that naturally occurs during the stride cycle at toe-off. Oversupination occurs when the foot remains on its outside edge after heel strike instead of pronating. A true oversupinating foot underpronates or does not pronate at all so it doesn't absorb shock well. It is a rare condition occurring in less than 1 percent of the running population.

swag - 1) prizes; 2) free products given out at races, festivals, or expos by manufacturers.

switchback - a 90-degree or greater turn.

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T1, T2 - see transition.

TA - Transition Area. Location for transitions in triathlons, and specific locations on the race course of adventure races at which racers are allowed to interact with their support crews, get food and change gear.

taco - to severely bend a bike wheel in a crash. Also: potato chip, pretzel.

taper - cutting back mileage (or taper) one day to three weeks (depending on race distance) before a big race. Tapering helps muscles rest so that they are ready for peak performance on race day.

team time trial (TTT) - usually a bike race format with two or more riders working together against the clock.

technogeek - a bike rider who focuses on all the latest technical gear developments.

tempo - fast continious movement (cycling: riding at a hard, steady pace).

tempo runs - sustained effort training runs, usually 20 to 30 minutes in length, at 10 to 15 seconds per mile slower than 10k race pace. Another way to gauge the pace of tempo runs - a pace about midway between short-interval training speed and your easy running pace.

10k - 10 kilometers = 10km = 1,000 meters = 6.2 miles; one of the most common running race distances.

10k pace - describes speed/pace of the run, simply is the pace of a runner's last 10k race, and therefore, is different for every runner.

threshold runs - runs of 5 to 20 minutes at a pace just a little slower than your 10k racing pace. Threshold pace is roughly equivalent to what exercise physiologists call "lactate threshold", or the point at which muscles start fatiguing at a rapid rate. Running at or near lactate threshold is believed to raise lactate threshold, which should allow to race faster in the future.

time trial (TT) - a race against the clock in which individual racers start at set intervals and cannot give or receive help from other race participants (i.e., no team efforts allowed, do drafting).

toast - being tired to the point of stopping.

toebox - the front portion of a shoe's upper. A wide toebox allows plenty of room for the toes to spread.

tops - the part of a drop handlebar between the stem and the brake levers.

TOTF - Time On The Feet. Training concept in ultras.

training effect - the result of exercise done with an intensity and duration sufficient to bring about positive physiological changes.

transition - segments of triathlon race between swimming and cycling (T1), and between cycling and running (T2).

tri–geek - someone obsessed with triathlon, especially with equipment and gear, or training methods, or any affiliated latest developments in the sport.

tubular - a lightweight bike tire that has the tube permanently sewn inside the casing. Also called a sew-up. The tire must be periodically glued to the rim.

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ultra - a term for long–distance races.

underpronator - less common than overpronation condition. The running shoes of underpronators show outsole wear on the lateral (outer) side not just at the heel but all the way up to the forefoot. Typically, underpronators tend to break down the heel counters of their shoes on the lateral side.

unranked team - a team in adventure race that is allowed to continue without all their teammates, or having missed a portion of the race course. Such team may finish the race but will not be listed in the official rankings.

upper - the leather or mesh material of the shoe that encloses the foot on the top.

USA Cycling - the umbrella organization for U.S. bicycle racing.

USCF - U.S. Cycling Federation, the organization that governs amateur road and track racing in America. A division of USA Cycling.

USPRO - U.S. Professional Racing Organization, the organization in charge of professional bicycle racing in America. A division of USA Cycling.

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velodrome - a banked track for bicycle racing.

veteran - international term similar to "master" in the U.S. According to the IAAF, men become "veterans" on their 40th birthday; women, on their 35th birthday.

vitamin B1 - enhances circulation and assists in the production of hydrochloric acid, blood formation, and carbohydrate metabolism. It effects energy, and is needed for normal muscle tone of the intestines, stomach, and heart.

vitamin B2 - (aka riboflavin), a water-soluble that functions to help the mitochondria of the muscle cells produce energy. It is necessary for red blood cell formation, antibody production, cell respiration, and growth. It also facilitates oxygen use by the body tissues.

vitamin B6 - involved in more bodily functions than any other single nutrient. It effects both physical and mental health. It is necessary in the production of hydrochloric acid and the absorption of fats and protein. It also aids in maintaining sodium and potassium balance, and promotes red blood cell formation. It activates many enzymes and aids in B12 absorption, immune system function, and anti-body production. It inhibits the formation of a toxic chemical called homocysteine, which attacks the heart muscle and allows the deposition of cholesterol around the heart muscle.

vitamin B12 - an important vitamin needed to prevent anemia. It aids in cell formation and cellular longevity. This vitamin is also required for proper digestion, absorption of foods, protein synthesis, and metabolism of carbohydrates and fats.

V02 max - the maximum amount of oxygen an athlete can take in to produce work, usually measured in of oxygen per kilogram of body weight. Elite athletes can record scores of 80 ml/kg or above.

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wall - see "hitting the wall".

warm-up - five to twenty minutes of easy jogging/spinning/swimming before a race or a workout. The point of a warm-up is to raise one's heart rate so the body (and its muscles) are looser before a tough workout begins.

washboard - a ripply patch of road or trail.

wheelsucker - derogatory term for cyclist who drafts behind others and doesn't take his turn at the front. Also "parasite".

wind trainer - an indoor trainer for cycling. The bike is mounted on stand that holds the rear wheel. When the bike is pedaled, the rear wheel turns a device that provides resistance.

wind up - steady acceleration to an all-out effort.

"world best" - a recorded best time for an event in which formal world records are not kept. For instance, the fastest time at 150m, a non-standard distance, is a "world best" rather than a "world record". Similar distinctions are made for road races which do not meet certain standards, such as races with excessive amounts of downhill.

WR - world record

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X-country - abbreviation of cross country. Type of geography which features surfaces unimproved for bicycle riding and/or running. In the most technical sense, this would even exclude hiking paths, and as such, it is a less general term than off road.

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Y-wrench - a combination tool in the shape of a Y, with a different size or type of tool at each end. The tips may be screwdrivers, Allen heads, or sockets.

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