Triathlons have come a long way since the first modern tri-race at Mission Bay, San Diego, California, in 1974. If you’ve decided to try this challenging and thrilling multisport, you’re in good company as in recent years, over 2 million individuals participate in triathlons annually. There’s even a dedicated women’s triathlon that caters to ladies of all ages and capabilities in a fun, comfortable, and friendly environment.
If you are a professional triathlete, you need to be prepared for what will happen. To help you get ready, here’s a low down of what you can do to transform yourself into a competent ‘triathlete.’
Create a Training Plan
Generally, if you have some sports experience and want to complete your first-ever triathlon, it’s best to plan at least 12 weeks before the actual event. However, if you’re already familiar with swimming, biking, and running, bringing it down to 8 weeks will be enough. If you’re starting from scratch and just recently started getting into the multisport, you need to have at least 16 weeks to train.
Promote Yourself and Gain Followers
Having supporters is good for your self-confidence and overall well-being. Posting your training pictures and videos is a good way to keep your friends and followers updated. Their greetings and messages will inspire you to get better and become successful.
Eating Right and Taking Supplements
Besides having a training plan, eating healthily and taking the right vitamins is vital to condition your body for the race. For instance, taking chewable supplements like iron and Vitamin C is ideal than the standard pills when training because they’re easier to consume. It helps regulate oxygen transport and energy metabolism in your body, increasing endurance and energy. Eating leafy greens and healthy fats are also encouraged as vegetables can retain hydration while fats boost energy.
Making these changes to your diet can mold your body into its optimal condition, making you more than ready to take on the triathlon.
Establish Your Swim, Bike, and Run Schedule
Create a training plan that fits in with your existing schedule. Although it doesn’t matter when you do it, you need to complete at least a minimum of two sessions per individual sport in a week. It’s wise to include a ‘brick’ session, completing your bike, and running (or swimming) workout back-to-back. Finally, have an open water swimming session or two weekly if the triathlon you’re participating in is taking place in a body of water other than a swimming pool.
After finishing your first week of training, gradually build and increase each activity’s intensity by no more than 10% per week. Before the race, you should now be capable of completing at least 10% more than the total distance in each sport.
Besides the actual training, ensure you add in resistance training as part of your weekly program that you can do after the main one. It’s best to include exercises that strengthen your primary muscles needed for each sport while creating mobility and stability, conditioning yourself for the race with ease.
Here are the different areas of each activity that you should focus your resistance training on:
- Swimming — Add in resistance exercises that enhance strength in the back, arms, shoulders, and trunk.
- Biking — Incorporate workouts that increase strength in the glutes, quads, and hamstrings.
- Running — Add exercises that build strength in the legs, hips, trunks, and shoulders.
Taking one to two days off each week is vital for recovery. It’s best to take rest days before or after a brick session, or both if you’re considering adding two rest days in your training program.
Having a well-thought plan will help improve your performance in all three individual sports while keeping you in ideal shape as you progress. However, as always, ensure you consult with your physician first before starting any new training routine.