• The Tempo
  • Posts
  • Feeling Fresh From Foam Rolling

Feeling Fresh From Foam Rolling

Foam rolling insights, the most hydrating liquids, and why you need to tempo


Good morning everyone,

From today onwards you’ll notice more of a presence of the swim performance brand, Blueseventy, within the newsletter. For years, they have supported me incredibly well as an athlete, and I was ecstatic when the CEO John, and his team, decided to invest further in our work. They make great products, and there is no doubt I will retire from the sport as a Blueseventy athlete.

  • If you’re looking to get into world-class wetsuits, swim skins, goggles, and other training gear, our discount code, “TEMPO20” will help you save on Blueseventy products throughout the year!

In today’s edition: 

  • 🧻 What actually happens when you foam roll?

  • 🏃 Why adding tempo to your program will help you have a breakthrough run!

  • 🥛 And what liquids will help you rehydrate the best?

Thanks for being here,

-Matt Sharpe, newsletter editor

Headshot of Matt Sharpe

Have a triathlete in your life who can't stop swimming, biking, or running? Fire this off to them. Forwarded from a friend? Sign-up for free. 


What Actually Happens When You Foam Roll?

Over the past 10 years foam rolling has become a staple of most endurance athlete’s training routines. It can be incredibly satisfying to find that right spot while rolling and feel much-needed muscle relief 💆

What is it?

Foam rolling is a self-myofascial release technique, which essentially is like getting a massage without paying for one! The classic roller is made of foam of varying density and lengths. And, in recent years there have been various innovations in the roller space.

Texture: Some rollers have ridges and knobs to help apply more pressure to specific areas of the body.

Vibration: Certain rollers have vibration capabilities that help promote further blood flow to the muscles and are just nice on the body.

What actually happens when rolling?

Similar to when a masseuse presses on that one brutal spot on your quad, the act of foam rolling uses friction to help release tension. Why so tense? Its all thanks to your fascia.

  • Your fascia is a sheath of connective tissue that surrounds your muscles, tendons, and pretty much everything in your body.

  • When you train, your fascia becomes stiff and dense, and this creates stiffness in your muscles.

  • Over time if this fascial stiffness is not addressed it can restrict flexibility, range of motion, and lead to injuries 😱

Does foam rolling really help?

Other than athletes just saying they “feel better” after rolling, there have been studies that show the benefits can include:

How to roll properly

There are plenty of opinions on how to foam roll correctly. We think the best way is to roll up and down a muscle group until you find a tight/painful spot. You should then hold on that spot until the pain and discomfort starts to dissipate. This means the fascia is releasing.

  • This video has some great insight into correct rolling technique.

Foam rolling for triathletes

Triathlon involves a lot of sports, so there are a lot of potential spots to hit with the foam roller!

Start with these five prime mover muscles as they are doing the bulk of the work:

Happy rolling!


Get The Goggles Your Eyes Deserve

Comfort, performance, and crystal clear vision. Experience it all with the incredible lineup of goggles from Blueseventy

Want next-level performance? 

  • 🥼 Industry-leading hydrodynamic molding for faster splits.

  • 🔬 Premium polycarbonate and anti-fog lenses offer razor-sharp vision.

  • 💙 Adjustable nose bridges for YOUR best fit. 

How about an open water advantage?

🌊 The Hydra Vision and Vision Plus goggles are designed with wide-angle visibility and will help you nail any open water challenge. 

Or, performance at a great price?

🤝 The NR2 is a fully customizable, elite goggle, at a stellar price point!

Find your next favorite pair of goggles at blueseventy.com, and get 20% off with “TEMPO20” at checkout!


🏃 Why you need to tempo: Tempo. It’s not only a great name for an email newsletter, it’s a great addition to any triathlete’s training plan. Adding quality tempo runs to your training plan can lead to your next breakthrough race. And this video explains all you need to know about this key type of workout. [The Running Channel]

🧁 Serious sugar: Although consuming more carbs is proven to help improve performance and speed up recovery, it can often seem like you’re just shoveling a ridiculous amount of sugar down the hatch! This video explores the potential dangers of having too much sugar. [GTN]

🥛 Best hydration: Will drinking water actually hydrate you?!? Yes, of course. But could you be hydrating better? According to this infographic, the liquids that hydrate you the best are pretty surprising! [YLM Sports Science]

🩺 The TriDoc is in: In the latest edition of the TriDoc podcast, Dr. Sankoff explores whether it is OK to train through certain illnesses, and speaks with a best-selling author on how she teaches children about a growth mindset through the power of running! [TriDoc podcast]


This is why they invented “hide self view” on Zoom 😆😴


Water woes: Water quality for the triathlon event at this summer’s Olympic Games in Paris continues to be a worry for officials. “There is no plan B.” [France 24]

Life-saving sport: Liam Colbrook seemed to have the perfect life. But under the surface his mental health was struggling and he even contemplated suicide. He now says triathlon helped save his life. [220 Triathlon]

NCAA athletes: The most recent NCAA Triathlon Champions, Arizona State University, have signed two new athletes for Fall 2024; Kaia Merill (USA), and Alice Alessandri (ITA). [The Sun Devils]

Women’s tri success: Over 590 competitors enjoyed the beautiful weather at this past weekend’s Kāpiti Women’s Triathlon. [NZ Herald]


Here’s what Tempo readers had to say about whether Challenge Roth could become THE bucket list race in triathlon.

Reader: Challenge Roth is the best race experience I’ve ever had… the course is lovely and challenging but the post-race atmosphere is amazing and unlike anything I’ve ever experienced in triathlon. There were dozens of food trucks right outside the stadium as well as a Biergarten so athletes were encouraged to stick around post-race to cheer on fell competitors. We stayed to the end to cheer on the final athletes while being entertained with great food and German 🍺

Reader: Apart from tradition, Kona is (at the moment) worse than Roth in every aspect. It is easier to come to Roth, easier to find accommodation (due to pure fact that Kona is on the Island), it is cheaper in probably every detail and Roth race course is much more exciting.

Reader: Having done both Kona AND Roth, I would still say that Kona has the most prestige. That said, I did Kona in ‘22, the last multi-gender race (albeit over 2-days). I think a multi-gender race is still possible in Kona, but IM needs to think out of the box. Hopefully the new CEO can do this and resurrect Konas prestige, in the meantime Roth can reap the rewards of a failed IM strategy

Reader: Being close to 70, Kona, Hawaii in the 80’s, one has to understand that it was unbelievable, there was nothing else like that. It was sunny, hot, far, very far, and it was almost only a desert, even if lava, and it was a Village. You, the athlete, really felt Special, almost privileged and honored to be there. Now, it’s an Industry! I discovered Roth , while IM Roth, in 1996 and 1998. The best event in Europe because of the best crowds. At the end if the day, for me, considering my past, it’s Hawaii, the birthplace of Ironman, that sits on Top.

Reader: Sorry but I think the Kona coffee boat has sailed. Unsure the luster of Kona will ever be the same. With Roth and now PTO offering age group competition I imagine we’ll see a decline in full IM participation for repeat / lifelong triathletes. First timers may stay steady, but people who are committed to winning and going to world champs may decline.

Reader: Roth is an amazing race. You neglected to mention that before the falling out with WTC, Roth was for years the MDot branded European Ironman Championship. Certainly WTC has a well earned reputation for running a premium event such that the MDot brand really does mean something. However the expression "Pigs get fat; hogs get slaughtered" comes to mind. I predict the greed of this corporation will be its' downfall.

Reader: I would love to see Kona back as a 1 day event! It was special because not everyone got to go. It's definitely lost it's appeal.... Challenge Roth is 100% a bucket list race for me!

Reader: It’s getting to the point that neither matters. The average person has to count on either winning a lottery or qualifying in one or two slots at an Ironman race. I’m looking at doing my first IM distance race this year and have a goal time of 12 hours. Respectable but not world class. But I have a feeling it will be a one and done. I will see how I feel after, but I suspect I will focus on shorter non branded local races. More fun less cost.

Reader: Both are clearly outstanding experiences but the fact that Kona is technically a World Champs where qualification rather than faster on the button gets you a slot means it will still hold that magic. Okay, I realize that has been diluted with legacy slots, roll downs, etc (which I'm a big supporter of in addition to the "elite AG" racing), but Roth is technically no different to the "regular" IM races. Both still on my bucket list though!


World Triathlon World Cup Napier, NZ

Women’s race: Australia’s Sophie Linn took control on the run and never looked back taking an emphatic first World Cup win.

Men’s race: A great day for Australia with Callum McClusky taking the surprise win ahead of gold medal favorite Hayden Wilde (NZ)

Mixed Team relay: Australia capped off an incredible weekend taking the win. Portugal stormed to second and Italy sailed to third.


What did you think of today's newsletter?

Login or Subscribe to participate in polls.

Join the conversation

or to participate.