The ultimate test of your determination and motivation, Triathlon allows you to push yourself further than you ever thought you’d go. Getting started is surprisingly easy with varying distances, women-only races and kids’ mini triathlons…
People riding bikes wearing a wetsuit look a little crazy, right? Have you noticed they’re become an increasingly common sight though? And that they always look happy? That’s because competing in a triathlon is incredibly satisfying – pushing yourself to your limits will fill you with pride and make you feel almost euphoric. Yep, really. And they aren’t wetsuits, they’re tri suits – similar but created to work when running and cycling too.
Triathlons start with a swim, then a cycle and finish with a run. Whether the swim is in open water or a pool and whether the cycle is on open or closed roads depends on the event. The whole swim, cycle, run thing sounds like hard work right? It is. If you’re new to multi-sports or you’re looking to get into triathlon to improve your fitness (excellent choice) don’t worry – you don’t have to start with Olympic distances.
A super sprint triathlon is a great starting point – these fun races consist of a 400m swim, 10km bike ride and a 2.5k run. From here you can work up to sprint distance races – 750m swim, 20km bike ride and 5k run. Of course you can go straight into Sprint if you already have a good level of fitness. Once you’re comfortable with sprint triathlons you’ll go onto compete at Olympic distance and can even progress to an Ironman race.
Triathlon is an incredibly popular multi-sport and as such is well catered for. Kids will enjoy mini triathlons with distances starting at 50m swim, 800m bike ride and 600m run. A taster event is a great idea before you put them straight into a race and be sure to ask your local club if they have a kids section too. Women-only races are popular and Paratriathlon is thriving. Visit British Triathlon Federation to see all the events and races on offer.
The triathlon season in the UK runs from May until September, so now is the ideal time to start your training, ready for next spring. Why not consider joining your local club – you’ll get lots of support and may well find training more enjoyable with fellow fitness enthusiasts and other members new to the sport. If joining a club isn’t for you, be sure to follow a good training program and don’t push yourself too hard to begin with. You’ll find lots of good training advice over at Beginner Triathlete and fantastic free training plans at triradar.com. It takes bucket loads of determination and patience to work your way up in Triathlon, but stick with it and you’ll reap the rewards. You’ll be one of those crazy people riding a bike in a tri suit soon enough!
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