You started out as a runner. Running is a great form of stress reliever for you so your developed it from a simple hobby and exercise into sports. From your first 2km run to longer, tiring yet accomplishing kilometer run.
Running seems to be a much easier sport for you so you find something to push you on the edge. And then one day you thought of joining triathlons. The challenge seems to tickle your determination and push your motivation. It’s a step towards pushing yourself out of your comfort zone and breaking your limits.
But how do one prepare for it especially if you’re only a master of one or none among all three: running, cycling and swimming? How do you prepare for your first triathlon?
Training and preparing yourself physically would not be enough. You would also have to prepare your overall mentality for the best race of your life. Being a first-timer can be intimidating but if you’re really determined to race past the finish line, you must remember these tips to prepare yourself for your first ever triathlon race (and become a triathlete!).
Schedule your training
This is especially important if you work 8 hours a day, 5 times a week. With suchlike work schedule, it would hard to find free time for you to train.
Allocate sufficient time for each disciplines. But before that, focus on your strengths and weaknesses so you know which discipline you need to work out more. If you’re already great with running, spend more hours training for cycling and swimming. Again, plan your training and ensure you devote all your time during training hours. Have your friends tag along in your training sessions to stay motivated.
Invest in your race gears
A flexible and comfortable suit plays a major role in your marathon success so make sure that you find yourself a great triathlon gear. Chaffing while your in the middle of running won’t be a great feeling so better find a suit that is breathable and suitable for you.
In addition, before the day comes, ensure that your bicycle is as ready and prepared as you are so you can avoid extensive malfunctions. Also, make sure that you bring your repair kit with you in case your tires succumb. Do take a test for your swimming essentials as well so you’ll know early if there’s anything you need to replace. For instance, if your goggles clouds up and blurs your vision while underwater, buy something better. Always find the best equipment you’re comfortable in and works for you so during the race, you’ll only worry about you and the finish line.
Do proper workout routines
Do you think you’ll need a thousand crunches to train for the race? Work the right parts of your body and figure out methods that could be beneficial for you.
Most of the time, coaches would train their athletes to focus on their endurance, speed and technique. As mentioned in the first tip, you have to schedule and plan your training carefully and it needs to be specific.If you’re unsure (you definitely are), consult with a professional coach to help you structure your training and give you advice to survive and conquer your much-awaited race.
Prepare your mental state
Aside from training your physical capabilities, you would also have to prepare your mental health as well. If you are unaware, there are people who die in triathlons due to various reasons.
This is especially important during the open-water swimming. You will be paddling and stroking in the water along with other racers so you should expect physical contact during that phase. You need to swim in a defensive manner. Aside from that, you would also need to prepare yourself for the water temperature. Most likely you’ll be splashing in cold water that can cause a shock to your body.
Practice. Relax. Enjoy
Signing up for a triathlon race is easy. Although getting through it is difficult, finishing off the race and granting you the medal is the best part of the long journey.
All the same with other kind of sports and other adventures; boxing, running, swimming, trekking, hiking, etc., triathlon needs prior training and extensive practice as well as preparation. There’s no way one can finish this race without training beforehand. Train each day so when it comes to the most-awaited time, you’re less nervous and more ready to tackle the race.
Most importantly, relax and enjoy the race. It’s your first time so enjoy each moment. Be dauntless for this sport and enjoy the whole process; even the cold water. It’s your first time so don’t bother coming off last, finish the race is a success itself. So don’t pressure yourself too much and enjoy the atmosphere.
About Chie Suarez
When you can’t find her watching the latest films in the cinemas eating popcorn, she’s probably writing for SWIMSHOP — the Europe’s premier swim specialist. They are both recognized nationally and internationally for providing the essentials for every swimmers of all levels.