A triathlon is a race that involves three different types of races - swimming, biking and running. It’s a test of endurance and skill. If you have thought about trying one out for the first time, we have included some tips that you can use to help you get ready for the event and to help you do your best.
Below are some general triathlon tips that you can use to get yourself ready for your first triathlon. These have to do with training and have some tips that you can use to help you prepare for the race.
The last thing you want to do is to try fitting your life into your training schedule. Instead, fit your training schedule into your life. Set realistic goals about the amount of time that can be dedicated to your training rather than failing when you try maintaining a workload that you can’t sustain.
You’re going to see a lot bigger gains in your fitness if you’re maintaining a consistent and moderate training plan.
Find some meet-up groups that you can bike, run and swim with that are close to your own fitness levels. It’s a lot more fun to suffer with other people and it also can help with keeping you on track and accountable with your personal goals. You’re also going to meet other triathletes who are able to give you help and provide advice based on personal experiences.
With a lot of different expensive performance gear that you can buy for the three events, it’s easy to want to get everything that’s the best. But as someone starting out, you should be looking for gear that is solid, durable and reliable. As your fitness improves, the benefits that the slicker and lighter gear is going to impact your performance. But when you’re just getting started, improvements made in your fitness, with the standard gear, is going to make a bigger difference than the gear will.
When you have more than one workout scheduled on a single day, you should do the more important or difficult workouts first, when you’re at your freshest. If you’re saving these key workouts for later, when you’ve already done your endurance workouts, you’ll be less likely to be able to keep up your intensity for completing your important workouts successfully. That’s why you want to understand each of your workouts’ purpose so that they can be accordingly prioritized.
Making sure your training is consistent and hitting the right workout intensity is a lot more essential than finishing all of your workouts perfectly as scheduled. You want to recognize when you’re too tired to finish your workout. You also want to know that struggling to complete your intervals means that you’re going to risk compromising how well you do the key workouts in the future.
Keep in mind that in a triathlon that you’re going to be swimming, biking and running without a break. That’s why it’s a good idea to have brick workouts where you are doing a swim and then a run right after. Or, you want to do a bike ride and then a run right after.
You want to spend time trying to figure out how you’re going to organize the transition area. This way, on the day of the race, in the race’s heat, you’re going to be efficient and quick. You should also include only the things that you absolutely need. When your transition area is cluttered, it’s going to slow you way down and cause you unnecessary stress.
Go through the whole process of removing your wetsuit then then putting your cycling gear on, and then putting your gear for funning on. It’s a good idea to include these practices into brick workouts. You’re going to be a bit tired, and this will simulate the way you feel on the day of the race.
Also practice the entire process of taking off your wetsuit and getting into cycling gear, then getting into your running gear. You can include transition practice during your brick workouts, when you are a little fatigued, to better simulate race day conditions.
You can’t always do this, but they are important for increasing your level of comfort and your performance in the triathlon. Make sure you’re seizing any opportunity possible to experience pack swimming in open water. You also want to practice the way to sight properly – take a stroke, take a breath, face forward, and then lift it so that your eyes come up out of water.
A wetsuit is very hard to remove anytime, and it’s even worse when you’re doing everything you can to save time during your triathlon. To help with removing after swimming, apply Vaseline liberally before your race to spots like under your arms and your legs. This will make it a lot easier to remove your wetsuit, and it will also help with guarding against chaffing.
Make sure you’re able to efficiently and safely make U-turns on your bike in the course’s middle. Give this a try when your training rides are over by placing a cone in the driveway or in a traffic-free, safe spot. Then practice entering your turn wide, hitting the turn’s apex by your cone and then exiting it wide all while keeping up your momentum.
Flat tires happen anytime, and you don’t want it to happen during your triathlon. Be certain you’re carrying a couple of repair tools for punctures under your saddle inside a pouch. If there’s a problem, you’re ready for it and can fix it.
Train your body’s digestive system so that you can take energy in while running and biking. Your goal should be replenishing 25% to 35% of your calories and 20 to 40 fluid ounces per hour. There’s a good chance you’ll need to increase your fuel and fluid intake during your run, so make sure you’re experimenting the amount you can handle during your run.
Now that we have looked at general tips, we’re going to look at some tips that have to do with your triathlon gear.
No matter how well you’re drying your feet once the swim is over, they’re still going to be damp. This means it’s going to be hard to put shoes and socks on. Sprinkling some talcum powder into your shoes and socks is going to help you with getting them on quickly.
Sunglasses are a must. Not only will they help keep the sun out of your eyes, but cycling-specific or running sunglasses can help you with sharpening your eyes in conditions of low-light, blocking out road glare and keeping insects from your eyes.
Lycra will be your best friend in a triathlon. Choose some close-For triathlons, Lycra is your friend. Choose close-fitting to stop your thighs from chafing. You are going to be a lot more comfortable during the running and cycling. Lycra also doesn’t hold water, so you can wear it under the wetsuit for saving time during transitions.
Elastic laces and lace locks are very helpful when you’re trying to put your sneakers on quickly. Instead of wasting precious time tying bows and tightening laces, just put your lace lock on and then you’re ready to go. These are cheap and they’re going to save you valuable time and hassle during the race.
A final way that you can save time is to get your own number belt. When you’re cycling, the number has to be visible on the back of your body. When you’re running, it has to be on the front of your body. Instead of reversing your shirt or swapping your number, just swivel your belt around on your body. That makes you ready much more quickly and easily.
Are you ready to give a triathlon a try? If you are looking for a coach, give me a call. I have many years of experience both with swimming and with coaching, and I am happy to help you. Let me know what you are looking for and what your questions are, and I will answer them. Give me a call today and let’s work together!
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