Whether you are new to the sport of triathlon, or a seasoned veteran – these are my three top tips from a PRO that may help you in your daily training leading into race season:
1) Do not neglect the “fourth” sport of triathlon – TRANSITIONS!
All too often, us coaches see athletes “relaxing” in the transition zone, eating bananas, sitting down to put socks and shoes on, even talking to other athletes and officials… forgetting that the race STARTS when the horn sounds, and ENDS when you cross the finish line. The race also INCLUDES transition times, not just a “SWIM”, “BIKE”, “RUN”, but also a “T1” (swim-to-bike transition), and “T2” (bike-to-run transition) time. This should be FREE time, quickly removing your wetsuit and putting your helmet on and RUNNING with your bike to the mount line. In your training, do not neglect the transitions, PRACTICE them… after a hard swim, get out and go for a ride (don’t head for the showers for ten minutes to contemplate doing to that group brunch or having a nap); and after a long ride, immediately change into your running shoes and head out for a short “Brick” run – practicing your transitions and getting use to running after the bike (Do not come in from a ride and eat everything in site and lay on the couch looking at your Garmin’s top speed!). Practice transitions – it will PAY OFF!
2) Have FUN with training, and Enjoy your races!
Ever hear the phrase “Do what you love, love what you do”? I have it on my wall in my home where I train all winter… if you aren’t enjoying yourself while training AND racing – then why are you doing triathlon? You should have FUN with training – think back to riding your bike as a kid, and the places you went with your friends. Think of how scared you were when you started swimming in the deep end, but how accomplished you felt after your first full 50m! Running to catch that bus, or running through your first finish line! Enjoy what you are doing, and don’t take everything so seriously! Have fun, and LOVE how the sport of triathlon makes you feel.
3) Get a coach/join a team!
Get someone to assist you with your training, or even plan it all out for you! Getting advice from a trained and seasoned coach who knows triathlon to a “T” can help create a program that best suits you and your goals. A coach can hold you accountable to train, give you feedback on form, technique, which races to start with, and even other athletes you might be able to train with. Joining a team or getting a coach can make a huge positive impact in your training, and make everything not necessarily “easier”, but helps you better understand how to get into this crazy sport!
Hope this works! 🙂
~ Jessey The Elf ~