Tri / Triathlon / Triathlons - do they float your boat?

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  • Cycling years, all varieties of racing. Took up sea swimming in April, doing about 5-8km per week, three races so far with one 2nd place finish in a 3km distance. Have done some running on and off in the past. Never ever done all three at once.

    Lads I swim with are triathletes and invited me to their end of season relay tri for a bit of fun. 200m swim, 5km bike, 1.5km run. How hard could it be.

    My team decided I’d go first, went out on the swim like the clappers. Was joint 1st out of the water by a good margin with a very experienced iron man. I guess this was where my first bit of inexperience showed. I tried to dry my feet and put socks on, but I’d say I had one sock half on when I saw the other guy I got out of the water with already on his bike. Eventually got out on the bike and got the gap down from 1 min to 30s by t2, where I showed even greater inexperience. Swapped my insoles over to my unlaced trainers and laced them up before setting off on 1.5km run, which I done as fast as I expected.

    Overall I’d say i was top 3 on swim time on the day and definitely fastest bike, but my transitions were absolutely tragic. Guy I ride with most weekends raced a lot of super league and gave me some tips for next time once he stopped laughing at me. Was fast and furious though, still got race lung today.

    Given me a taste to try a full triathlon next year though, I’ll probably go straight in with Olympic distance as I find I settle in better with longer swim and bike races, and hopefully that’s the case for a tri.

  • Great you enjoyed your first full tri and the good news is sorting out your kit and transitions is pretty easy. Just speak to your experienced mates or watch a couple of GTN videos and after a little bit of time practicing swift transitions in your brick sessions you'll have it down in no time. Race your mates in training and maybe enter some smaller/shorter local events just for practice and a bit of fun. I've made loads of silly mistakes that have cost me places but luckily most of them were in less important local events so even though i let it annoy me at the time just say to yourself every mistake you make in practice should be one less you'll make on race day. Saying that i did miss out on a podium at a local sprint event a couple of weeks ago by 5 seconds and i lost about 15 in T1 because my one of my helmet buckles had dropped inside and got caught in one of the vents so had to unhook it. Little things like that are a lot harder when your HR is doing 180 bpm with others around flying out of transition and your stressed. Good luck and you'll be hooked in no time.

  • Aside from a tri this weekend that I’m not able to do, I think that’s pretty much it for events in Ireland til next year, but I’m certainly keen to try a few next year life permitting (baby due in January).

    I can’t see myself doing any brick sessions in the near future, but I’ll be adding a few runs to my week going forward.

  • Good luck with training and the baby. We're expecting our first in January as well so i expect 15 hour training weeks will be of the cards for a while too. I have a 9 mile each way commute which i run once a week so that should keep me ticking over in the meantime and once she's settled into a routine I'm hoping to be able to add runs off the bike and swimming plus bike and run intervals on my days off as I'm dropping down to a four day week as soon as she arrives. Thats the plan but we'll see as i could well be on my knees by March 😕

  • Ah congrats to you too! We’ll be similarly sleep deprived! I have very easy access to sea swimming (I live opposite the pier), and I’ve been swimming pretty much every weekday morning since April, so I’m hoping to keep that up chop/swell permitting. Just received a smart turbo too that I’m hoping to squeeze a few ad hoc sessions a week in on, and the same for runs.

    Like you I could be on my knees by March!

  • Now the seasons over hows everyone reflecting on the season? Plans for the off season or targets/ambitions for next year already?

  • First triathlon ever in April so predictably instead of addressing my major weakness (swim) I’m out tomorrow to ride the bike route. Not sure what I expect to learn from this!

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Tri / Triathlon / Triathlons - do they float your boat?

Posted by Avatar for kattiep @kattiep