Whether you are a seasoned veteran or a beginner triathlete, the following triathlon training tips will help you have a better race day.
Triathlon Training Tip #10 – Train on the Bike you Race
One thing you must do is train on the bike you will use on race day.You don’t have to have the most expensive bike at the race as long as you are comfortable on the one you use. Don’t spend months training on one bike and use a different one for the race.
Triathlon Training Tip #9 – Invest in Good Shoes
Spend the money on a good pair of shoes from a store that specializes in running. The expert employees will be able to fit your feet with the perfect shoe for your gait, foot shape and race ambitions. You will be on your feet for a good portion of the race so be sure to be comfortable.
Triathlon Training Tip #8 -Train for the Water you will Race In
If the triathlon has an open water start, practice in open water, rather than the pool. The more you practice in the conditions you will have at the race, the more prepared you will be on race day. If you are racing in the ocean, you may encounter choppy waves. To combat the chop use shorter strokes, then longer, more efficient strokes once the water smoothes out. During your training, focus on your swimming technique because this will make the largest difference in your results on race day. Make sure your breathing, kick, body position, and arm rotation are in the proper form.
Triathlon Training Tip #7 – Train for Transitions
Training for transitions can save precious minutes on race day. Time how long it takes to change from your wetsuit to your cycling gear, then find ways to decrease this time such as stepping out of your wet suit while fastening your helmet, or putting your feet in your cycling shoes while they are already strapped into your pedals. You should grab your visor and race number and put it on while running out of T2. Why stand there and put it on.
Triathlon Training Tip #6 – Don’t Over Train
It is easy to get swept up in the excitement of training for a triathlon, but don’t forget to plan days of rest in your training program. On race day, your adrenaline will help carry you through. Don’t risk injury for a few extra hours of training. Be sure to rest your body and you will be much better off for it.
Triathlon Training Tip #5 – Train For The Length of Race You Are Running
If you are running a sprint triathlon, train for speed not endurance. Interval training is a technique you can use for the type of all out racing you will be doing in a sprint. Introduce shorts intervals of running, cycling, or swimming at an increased pace, then slow your pace until your breathing has recovered. Repeat this technique during your training and you will get faster.
Triathlon Training Tip #4 – Vary your Workout
If you normally train indoors, head outside for a trail run.
You need to provide yourself with a change every once in a while so your mind does not become bored with the same regimen day in and day out.
Triathlon Training Tip #3 – Lubricate Your Body
Lubricate all contact points on your body with any number of commercially available body glides. You can find these at any fitness or running store. There is nothing worse than getting off the bike with a rash and then running for miles.
Triathlon Training Tip #2 – Fuel Your Body
Running and bike stores stock an array of energy gels, drinks, and supplements. Energy gels and blocks are easy to carry in the pouch of a fuel belt and will keep your energy level high and your performance at its peak on race day. Every body has different needs so it will take some experimenting to figure out what works for your body.
Triathlon Training Tip #1 – Slow and Steady Start Wins the Race
Many people have burned out midway through a race because they started out too fast. Since the first leg of a triathlon is in the water, plan to train and swim at a steady pace that you can sustain. You should train for the exact strategy you will use in your swimming portion. When entering the water, you should run until the water reaches knee-level, as this will maximize your efficiency. Prepare yourself mentally for the psychology of the other racers. Many of the racers will be sprinting from the very beginning of the race. You should stay relaxed and maintain proper breathing while building into your rhythm. While other racers will try to align themselves as close as possible to the first buoy, you should not follow the pack. Instead, feel comfortable starting outside, and then eventually come into the line as you near the first buoy. You can use the faster racers to make your swim more easy by drafting. While not legal for the bike, it is very legal and beneficial during the swim. As the faster racer passes by, slip in just behind them and you can feel the difference in your effort. Do not try and keep their pace, but instead stay with them only until you lose the benefit of their draft. By not over-expending energy in the water, you will be refreshed for the cycle and ready to go.
Training for a triathlon is an exciting, rewarding experience. The proper training and equipment can ensure that you finish strongly and safely in your next triathlon. I hope this triathlon training advice will be of some use to you.
You can find resources and triathlon training tips for beginners and experienced triathletes here.
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