February 25, 2014
Four Seasons Hotel Westlake Village, CA, is launching a triathlon program to give aspiring triathletes the guidance needed to continue and veteran triathletes new ways of perceiving challenges.
The "Ultimate Performance Triathlon Training Camp" is helmed by professional coaches and the on-site California Health and Longevity Institute team and features extensive training and educational components. The growing interest in extreme obstacle courses and other stamina-testing trials combined with a lack of adequate resources gives savvy hotel brands an easy opportunity to align themselves with the movement.
"Nobody does triathlon training on the luxury level," said Doug Green, United States Masters Swimming coach and head trainer for program at Four Seasons Westlake Village, Los Angeles. "[Other programs] don’t really train you, they just work you out.
"We said, let's train them how they can train themselves for a season rather than have them ride hard or run hard. Let's train them to train smart.
"What we’re really looking for is the 30-60-year-old male or female who has dedicated a specific part of their year to an objective like an Iron Man or a Half Iron Man. Somebody with a real dream or a competitive person who has been locked inside because of the snow in Colorado, and hasn’t seen the sun since September."
The training camp spans four days and five nights from April 16-20. Athletes of all fitness levels are invited to attend, but the serious training may
Guests begin the excursion with fitness assessments administered by the CHLI to determine fitness levels. Health tests such as body composition tests, VO2 lung capacity tests and oxygen blood tests will also be used.
California Health and Longevity
Each day guests will be ushered into the classroom to gain insights from top triathlon training professionals. Aspiring contenders know how to run, swim and bike, but are they performing each task at an optimal level?
The coaches will then offer training insights regarding the three components of a triathlon: running, swimming and cycling. Nutrition and mental preparation lessons are also planned.
Four Seasons promotional image for triathlon camp
Training sessions will be tailored to match results from the assessments. Sessions will be filmed for post-workout video analysis, so that guests can see where they have to improve.
Mr. Green said that triathletes generally spend between 200-400 hours over a nine-month-period getting ready.
Malibu Pier near Four Seasons Westlake Village
Consequently, the program does not purport that guests will be ready to compete after the four days. Instead, the program aims to get people on the right track and provide the motivation vital to competition.
Guests can also take part in yoga, stretching and weight lifting classes. Sleeping advice and spa treatments will be offered to ensure proper recovery.
Four Seasons Westlake Village
Mr. Green pointed out that other triathlon camps do not offer a holistic experience. Food and board are relegated to attendees, while training takes place in an insulated manner that separates work outs from the total experience.
The idea for the program came about because directors at the property were students of Mr. Green and they recognized that there was not a total triathlon program.
Four Seasons had the space for training and luxury accommodations and Mr. Green could bring in the experts.
Credentials of the trainers include United States Masters Swimming, American Swim Coaches Association, USA Swimming, USA Triathlon, USA Cycling and The Red Cross.
Booking information can be found here.
Finding the fit
Other luxury hotels have rudimentary programs to meet the demands the fitness-inclined.
For instance, Trump International Las Vegas augmented its Trump Wellness program with a new year-inspired boot camp and a wellness package through February.
The “Resolution to Wellness” package is intended to give prospective guests the extra push they need to commit to a fitness regimen for the new year. Since loyal guests have had several months to become aware of the Trump Wellness program, the latest component will likely be regarded as a natural extension (see story).
If the program goes well, Mr. Green and Four Seasons hope to run additional camps throughout the year and export the program to other properties.
"If people are spending that money, maybe they can come back and build camaraderie," Mr. Green said.
"Maybe even once a quarter, if there was a demand," he said.
"Then we’ll take it to another location. That’s the big idea. Let’s see if we can get it done once correctly."
Joe McCarthy, editorial assistant on Luxury Daily, New York