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Ode to my new favorite training grounds: Cozumel

Riding along the highway on the east side of CozumelI have been inspired to write this blog after my incredible time training down in Cozumel this November.  Previously I have been to Cancun and Playa del Carmen and wasn’t sure how the training would be in Cozumel. But I was astounded by the magical place that is Cozumel.

The island is a triathlon utopia.  There is light traffic through town but outside this small area out around the island there is little traffic.  In addition, during most of the 68K loop around the island there is an entirely separate highway dedicated solely for use by bikes.  As your riding along this bike highway, you look to your left and see undeveloped natural lands and to your right is an unobstructed view of the beautiful jewel toned Caribbean sea.  Not to mention the brand new pavement on this highway is like butter.

In addition, there is a running track and pool in town open for use by the public almost anytime day or night for free.  Unlike the US or most other countries, these facilites are open and accessible to all without requiring steep fees.  And most importantly, the local community is so warm and supportive.  The locals cheer when you ride and run past during your daily sessions.  This is the only place in all my travels were people actually cheer as you ride or run by while out training.  Unlike in the US or Australia where I have been heckled and yelled out while riding, here the people stop and offer cheer of encouragement as you ride or run past.  It is very special.

Running in Cozumel during the Ironman

Finally, this undiscovered paradise is easy to get to from the US and once you’re there the cost of hotel and food is very affordable.  It has all the benefits of Hawaii or Australia without the cost and all the budget-friendliness of Thailand without the long trip.  This is truly going to be the next triathlon mecca.  In ten years, it won’t be San Diego, Boulder, or Tuscon but Cozumel where the who’s who of our sport want to go for a training trip.

Come to Cozumel for your next training trip and you won’t want to go home!

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