What should I know before starting my first triathlon?

So you are thinking of doing a triathlon, but don’t know where to start? Anyone can do a triathlon, all you need is a pair of goggles, a bicycle + helmet and some running shoes to get started. Once you have these essential items, look to set an achievable event approximately 12 weeks away. This will provide you with adequate time to prepare yourself for the challenge of completing your first triathlon event. The next step you will need to make is finding the time to fit in a minimum of 2 sessions per week for swimming, cycling and running. Start small and make sure you do not increase your weekly mileage by more than 10-15%, to avoid potential injury or burnout. The most important thing to remember is to be consistent with your training, there is nothing worse than missing sessions and trying to play catchup – your body will find a way of punishing you, usually in the form of injury.

Try to get a buddy involved at the same time. It is always more fun and motivating to have a friend who shares a common goal to help you both enjoy the experience. You can then set up a few open water swims with your friend to get used to swimming without the confinement of a swimming pool. Group rides are also a great way to increase motivation and increase your fitness. Join a running group locally if you can, you will learn invaluable tips on pacing, training and information on the best places to run in your area.

Above all, make sure you enjoy your triathlon experience. You do not need all the gadgets in the world to start. Triathlon is a simple sport and an easy one to get started. Once you find out how great the sport is, there will be plenty of time to delve into the fancy bikes, accessories, racing shoes that make triathlon even more fun.

– By Ricky Swindale – Pushys sponsored athlete

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