So, you’ve decided to enter a triathlon for the first time.
Before going into the nuts and bolts of what you need and how you can get the most out of your first race, WELL DONE YOU FOR PURSUING SUCH A GREAT SPORT!! I’ve been competing in triathlon for 7 years (pre- working as a personal trainer), and I can tell you that the community surrounding this sport and the variety of quality events across the UK make it a fabulous challenge to undertake…so, let’s get started!
There are 5 standard race lengths for triathlon.
Half IronMan (aka 70.3)
Here is a list of items you will need to get going with your triathlon training
£15 – 23
£300 – 7850
£30 - 300
If you plan on entering a race where you swim in open water you will also need a wetsuit. These range in price from £165-470, but if its your first race you may want to consider hiring one for the season, as you will save a significant amount of money (£65 for the season) and be able to return the item at the end of the season (there is also the option to buy). For more information and advice on fitting visit www.wetsuithire.co.uk.
How to train
Here are a few key rules to assist you on your way to completing your first triathlon.
Train all disciplines – you may be world class at one of them, but don’t forget to train the one you are best at.
Balance your sessions – the total time spent on a triathlon can be broken down into the following rough percentages, 20% swimming, 50% cycling, and 30% running. When you plan your weekly triathlon training leading up to your first race, keep that rough breakdown in mind when deciding how much time you have in total to train.
Treat Nutrition as ‘the 4th discipline’ – the fuel you put into your body during training and racing will have a dramatic effect on the your improvements as you prepare, as well as your results on the day. Also, make sure that any nutrition (i.e. energy drinks, gels or bars) have been tested in training to make sure that they agree with you. Race day is not the day to experiment, so go with what you know.
Where to find events
There are literally hundreds of triathlons in the UK, and the following are a few options for locating an event near you:
Best of luck with your first race, and watch this space for training tips and more information!