Triathlete Jeff Lam, a Physical Therapist and Personal Strength/Conditioning Specialist based in California, enjoys training and racing in his spare time. To assist with heat adaptation with training, Jeff installed a Hallmark 44 sauna in his garage to complement his home gym. Below, Jeff goes in detail why his sauna has become a key resource to his triathlete lifestyle.
- What motivated you to get a sauna for your home?
As a triathlete living in the San Francisco, Bay Area, there are only a handful of days throughout the year where you can truly take advantage of heat and humidity to improve sports performance. This year, I have some upcoming races that will have hot temperatures. If you are from where I am from, essentially every race away from here is a hot race.
Racing in places like St. George, Utah, Chattanooga, Tennessee and Acapulco, Mexico for Ironman events in 2022 would previously mean training at one end of the spectrum and racing in the other end. Not exactly optimal, and something I felt I had no control over. Enter Finnleo’s smaller footprint Hallmark series and coupling it with Coach Matt Dixon’s Sauna protocol, I now have another training resource right here in my garage gym to help increase blood volume and fend off the heat (and altitude).
- Describe your sauna set-up.
The Hallmark 44 sauna fits PERFECTLY in the area of the garage between a window and the garage door sensors. It even fits seamlessly in the vertical direction. When garage door is left open, and it is at times, natural light is allowed to peak through more so than just the frosted windows when door is closed. The sauna complements the other pieces of the garage gym which include a Vasa swim trainer, the race bike attached to a Wahoo Kickr, a Rogue Monster Lite folding rack, and numerous other pieces I use personally and professionally as a physical therapist/strength and conditioning coach. Safe to say, the cars remain outside and are less important than what’s in the gym and the lifestyle that comes with it.
- What do you like the most about your Hallmark 44 sauna?
The simplicity of it all. From putting it together with little help and training, to being able to utilize the SaunaLogic2 Control's Bluetooth capabilities to start the sauna from afar so that it is increasingly HOT and “quite stressful” as per protocol (Matt Dixon, PurplePatch) by the time I’m back from an indoor bike and/or outdoor run. Before sauna life, I would load the bathtub with hot water which also took time/resources, but the house I live in now has two showers and no tubs.
- How did the installation go for the panel-built Hallmark 44 sauna?
Surprisingly easy. I went with the 120V Junior heater to achieve up to 194 degrees Fahrenheit. The local Finnleo dealer, Pacific Coast Sauna and Spa, made certain that my garage/house had the required outlet and it did.
- How do you use your sauna? Do you have any sauna routine?
Sauna usage at intense heat is only reserved for immediately after key workouts starting several weeks leading up to an event (sauna protocol from Purple Patch podcast, Episode 174 starting at minute 30:25). I aim to spend between 10-30 minutes each time and building to a point of reasonable discomfort without any hydration until after the session. All of the other times, myself, friends and family will use it much more moderately and comfortably.
- What were your thoughts about the sauna design and materials?
Keeping with the simplicity, the modular design not only looks clean, but preserves floor space for other things (taking less space than the treadmill I’m pondering to get). Inside, two adults can sit side by side or one adult can meditate or do multiple types of stretches with the ease of the adjustable benches.
- How was it working with your local Finnleo dealer?
I worked with Pacific Coast Sauna and Spa (San Mateo, CA). The owner was very helpful!
- Would you recommend Finnleo?
- What would you tell someone who is considering a Finnleo sauna for their home?
Ask yourself if you see yourself and others using it at least 3-4x a week. If the answer is yes, then go for it!
- Type: Hallmark 44 Sauna
- Heater: Junior sauna heater
- Control: SaunaLogic2 Digital Control with worldwide mobile app
- Finnleo Dealer: Pacific Coast Sauna and Spa (San Mateo, CA)