How the CEO of Lululemon Stays in Elite Triathlon Form

head shot of calvin mcdonald in a swim cap and goggles

Marcus Eriksson

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CALVIN MCDONALD IS on his bike, indoors, on this early Monday morning, alternately putting his head down and eyeing the iPad that’s serving up his Zwift virtual-inch course. He’s tackling three myth climbs in almost about 30 miles. The cumulative 3,000 toes of elevation accomplish isn’t for the faint of coronary heart or the tired of legs, however McDonald doesn’t thoughts. He’s all in with his virtual practicing associates, who inform a combine of strengthen and extraordinary bike-pack trash notify with grind thru the anxiousness. The exercise ends with a merciful four-mile downhill.

After that, the 51-one year-vulnerable Lululemon CEO shuts it down, turning off the fan subsequent to him, hopping off his coach, and wiping the sweat from his brow. One exercise down, one to mosey. And yes, you be taught that right: Calvin McDonald does two-a-days.

In an world stout of busy pros who battle to slot in exercises, duration, McDonald, an accomplished triathlete, packs his exercises tight to care for his engine and agenda beautiful-tuned. And he does bear an engine: This past December, he positioned in the tip 10 percent of the total 2,300-plus-particular person field at Ironman 70.3 Indian Wells, a 1.2-mile swim, 56-mile bike, and 13.1-mile scurry. That certified him for the 70.3 World Championships in 2024.

calvin mcdonald on his indoor bike

Marcus Eriksson

Lululemon bested market expectations with double-digit one year-over-one year development in 2023, and McDonald says that’s not in spite of the ten to 12 hours per week he spends practicing. It’s on legend of of it. With three disciplines to inform and 7 days to make it, “you’ve got to be deliberate alongside with your time,” he says. It’s an design he takes to practicing as nicely as to life in frequent. “I be taught about at where the wide alternatives and challenges are, and that’s where I employ my time.”

McDonald loves the bike leg (the longest half of any tri) most. He’ll make up to six bike classes per week, alongside with two swims, two or three runs, and two energy classes. Zwift exercises (which allow you make employ of a historical bike for indoor exercises) with chums provide camaraderie, however he’ll inch alone as nicely. A setup in his office helps him be efficient with time.

Every session is about more than gains, too. “I employ the practicing time to work thru any mental roadblocks or challenges that I’m going thru,” he says. “After the exercise, this clarity enables me to be more original and centered in conversations in some unspecified time in the future of my day.”

calvin mcdonald doing core indoors

Marcus Eriksson

Triathlons sync with McDonald’s being. He’s continuously been active (and mature to play ice hockey), however the three-sports-in-one nature of a tri pushes his time-management skills, especially as a CEO who desires to be a original dad to his four formative years. He races four or five instances a one year. He speaks most ceaselessly of being centered, doing what you fancy, and dialing up efficiency—and likewise that you can’t continuously announce whether or not he’s talking about working a firm or practicing for a tri.

Every run teaches him lessons, fancy the wreck on the course at the Melbourne 70.3 in 2022 that left him with two broken ribs and remodeled him into a spectathlete, cheering his teammates on. “It teaches you that you’re not up to bolt. For me, it helps me calibrate most of the sentiments we feel in life and professionally when things don’t mosey the design you had hoped,” he says.

He shares these experiences with his Lululemon crew when he can. Final July, he and 40 Lululemon-related riders assembled at the starting line of the 75-mile Okanagan Granfondo bike run in Penticton, British Columbia. “Everyone does their very have bolt, and we join at the tip of the day and bear an excellent time what all americans accomplished,” he says. “I believe sport is a improbable learning platform for constructing character.” Which is strictly why he’ll be support on Zwift on Wednesday morning, too.

Set Vitality and Endurance on the Bike Esteem McDonald

Set this 60-minute exercise on a stationary bike/bike coach. This intense exercise with cramped rest helps fetch energy and endurance.

The Warmup

Originate up with 5 minutes of easy pedaling, picking up the bolt every minute. Discontinuance at 85 percent of your maximum coronary heart charge (MHR).

The Well-known Self-discipline

Utilize the next 5 minutes at 90 percent of your MHR; your legs will bear to restful feel continuously taxed. Then pull support (only a bit!) for five minutes, losing to about 85 percent of your MHR. Repeat this sample 4 more instances. Discontinuance centered!

The Cooldown

Now dash easy for five minutes. Unhurried down ample that you discontinuance with a coronary heart charge that’s as cramped because it will possibly well also be in the event you had been taking a shuffle.

calvin mcdonald swimming

Marcus Eriksson


Lightning Spherical Q&A with McDonald

Dream exercise associate?
“Bono. He loves biking, and U2 is my accepted band.”

Favorite cheat meal?
“Does wine rely? If that is so, then a nice glass of pink.”

Easiest time to scurry?
“Within the afternoon or evening, when my physique feels a bit of more loose.”

Favorite instruments?
“The AlterG Anti-Gravity Treadmill. I bear an getting older knee, and working can irritate it.” This tech lifts your physique up so that you’re putting only a share of your weight on the tread.

Hardest practicing block?
“The taper sooner than a run. You honest are attempting to score began and make the run.”

A model of this story looked in the March/April 2024 scenario of Men’s Health.


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