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This post was originally published on https://zone3.us/blogs/blog/what-to-eat-and-when-to-eat-during-a-triathlon

By Glen Gore, former pro triathlete and current coach.

 

If ever there was a hot topic of debate, it comes in the form of triathlon nutrition and more importantly, nutrition intake on race days.

What exactly do you need to eat and drink, and when?

To start this editorial piece, we need to agree that there is no magic formula that will work the same for everyone. Each of us differs in our body mechanics and the way we work with nutritional absorption that it’s almost impossible to pinpoint one clear plan that will work for everyone.

Having said that, you can still use sound advice and at least start on the right track. For us, nutrition is another important discipline in the sport of triathlon. The fastest and most finely tuned sports car in the world will go nowhere fast if there is no fuel in the tank. Similarly no matter how hard you have trained and prepared if you are going to race on zero nutrition, your body (engine) is going to slowly come to a complete stop and falter.

Rule no 1 – don’t neglect your nutritional intake on race days. It’s quite easy to “forget” to drink and eat when you are giving 100% during an all-out race effort. Just know that sooner or later, you will start to run out of energy stores and that is when racing becomes anything but fun.

Fuelling is different depending on the distance

A Sprint Distance triathlon race is completely different from an Olympic, Half, or full Ironman distance event. These distances require different amounts of training loads to be fully prepared to take on the challenge. The same rule applies to how you fuel the body during an event that takes less than 60 mins compared to an event that may take up to 17hrs.

Sprint

A sprint race normally lasts anywhere between 52 minutes for the PRO’s up to say 1.5-2hrs for the backmarkers. Most of the time – depending on weather conditions, you can get away with next to nothing in the form of intake over the sprint distance. Some hydration via a small sports bottle and perhaps 1-2 gels for the bike and run should sufficiently see you through the event.

I have often found that my best results over the sprint distance come when I go in “light” – not much food in the tank – that empty feeling but with just enough energy stores from the previous night’s meal or early morning small breakfast to see me through the event.

Hydration is always important – you never want to start any event “thirsty” so make sure the fluid levels are topped up in the form of small sips. A huge intake of fluids just before the start is not a suggested best practice for an optimum result over short distances. 

These should be taken as pure guidelines and not as hard-fast rules – these suggestions come from trial and error on the battlefield.

Olympic

When you compete in an event that spans longer than 2hrs, then you need to start looking at a more efficient fueling system.

The Olympic distance event can take anywhere from 2hrs to 3hrs plus – eating and drinking now becomes more important. If you are not fuelling adequately over the 40km cycle, you will feel the burn when you enter the hunt on the 10km run.

Some athletes require less nutritional intake than others while others may require more fluid intake. The best place to learn what your body requires is by trial and error. The more you race over this distance, the more you will learn as to what you require and when. 

Half-Distance

When the event time spans over 4hrs in duration right up to 8h30, then you will need a tried and tested method, worked on in training, to see you adequately fuelled in a race that covers a whopping 113km.

The many trained brick sessions will give you a firm indication of what will work for you on race day and what will not. It does become quite expensive when your training sessions have to mimic race days but as the saying goes, practice makes perfect. The more you practice eating and drinking over the longer distances in training, the easier the transition will be from training days to half-distance racing days.

Full IM Distance

So many athletes have “bonked” or “hit the wall” over the full IM distance simply because they ran out of fuel. The body was prepared, the mental side was in place but the “engine” for some reason was neglected.

Firstly consider that a normal day at work would require someone to eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Now add in 3.8km of swimming, 180km of biking, and a 42.2km marathon to top it all off, covered in a time that may span at least 17hrs. Now it becomes apparent just how much food and drink is required to keep you moving along at an optimum level.

Best Fuelling Tactics during Training

  • Find a product that works and more importantly is cost-effective. Just because it’s expensive does not mean it’s better.
  • Trial and Error – the brick session will help you develop a suitable war plan for race days. If it works in training, more than likely it will work during the race.
  • Make sure you re-fuel within 15-30 minutes after a strenuous workout. As athletes, we often neglect the post-training refueling strategy. Remember you are not only eating for today but you are eating for tomorrow’s training session as well.

Best Fuelling Tactics during Racing

  • Eat small bits and drink small sips all the time – especially during the longer races – the reason being to keep the tank on full at all times and not deplete it before you think about replenishing. 
  • Cut up your energy bars into small bite-size pieces – this is much easier to eat and digest while on the move.
  • Get in some solid food sources quickly once you are done with the swim. The longer the duration of the event, the more advisable to start the cycle with something a little more substantial than just a gel.
  • Don’t overload your bike with too much nutrition and hydration. This makes that very expensive bike extremely heavy. The bigger races have more than an ample supply of nutrition along the way – make use of it even if you need to stop briefly and take some on-board.
  • Don’t start the run in a hurry. T2 over long distances is a time where you need to relax a little and consume some solid nutrition before you head out onto the run. Whatever time you lose in transition you will more than makeup, especially when the run distance is over a full standard marathon.

Common Fuelling Mistakes

  • Eating only when hungry – this means it’s already too late. It will take you a long time to get back those lost energy stores, time which you won’t have during the race days.
  • Drinking only when thirsty. Once again, this is too late – if you are feeling thirsty you are already on the way to partial dehydration. Keep on sipping water and juice so you never get to feel that thirst.
  • Trying new stuff on race day. Stick to what you know and what you have trained on.
  • Don’t alter the nutritional plan. What you practiced in training, do the same on race day. Don’t change the formula, there is a good chance it won’t work.
  • Drinking too much. This can be a problem worse than drinking too little so take the race weather conditions on the day into account and drink what is normal for you.

Nutrition is important, a successful race plan always has a well thought out nutritional plan that goes along with it, and remember, it takes trial and error to perfect – good luck!

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Adjusting your bike to the perfect saddle height is crucial in order to maximize comfort and payoff during your training rides for Kerrville Tri. Incorrect height leads to pain and discomfort during and after your ride. It can also prevent you from improving your performance on the bike. Learn the importance of correct saddle height, and how to adjust your bike to the perfect fit with these easy steps.

What is Saddle Height?

Saddle height is measured by the distance between the center of the pedal axle and the top of the saddle, or your bike seat. This is set by adjusting the seat post to your ideal height to balance your comfort and power on the bike. This height is arguably the single most important adjustment on your bicycle. Incorrect height can contribute to discomfort in the saddle, anterior and posterior knee pains, and ultimately limit how much power you produce.

How To Adjust Your Saddle Height

There are many ways you can approach finding your perfect saddle height. One of the best approaches is to establish it based on the rider’s individual ride characteristics and flexibility. You can follow the “heel to pedal method” before your next ride. This will get you in the ballpark.

  1. Stand next to your bike and raise the saddle to your hip to get an idea of where to start.
  2. Get on your bike, and place your heel on the pedal to determine if you will raise or lower your saddle.
    • If you are having trouble making contact with your heel to your pedal – the seat is too high.
    • If your knee is bent – it is too low.
  3. Put your bike on the trainer and adjust accordingly.
  4. Get back on your bike with your heel on the pedal and pedal backward to reach the six o’clock position.
  5. Your leg should be completely straight, without being overextended to achieve the correct saddle height.

Pro tip: Make very small adjustments during this process, then repeat until you have found the perfect height.

Ready to Ride

Once you find the proper height, use a piece of electrical tape around at the base of the post where it meets the seat clamp as a marker. Take a tape measure and record the measurements, in case you need to make very slight adjustments in the future.

Have a professional look at your bike every few years to achieve maximum comfort. After adjusting your bike to the perfect saddle height, make the first few rides short. Give it time!  Your body may need a few sessions to adapt to your new height before you feel yourself improving on your cycling journey. How often do you check your saddle height? Let us know on Facebook and Twitter.

When it comes to choosing bike pedals, you need to consider the best option to meet your needs depending on the kind of riding you’ll be doing. It’s all about personal preference and what you feel most comfortable with. If you’re in the market for some new pedals, keep reading to understand the different types of bike pedals to figure out which ones are right for you.

Types of Pedals:

There are two basic types of bike pedals: Flat and Clipless. Flat pedals are the more common of the two when it comes to triathlon because you wear regular running shoes with this type of pedal. Which is great and convenient for the bike to run transition. Clipless pedals are great for athletes who want to feel more at one with the bike. With these pedals, you’ll need to wear special cleats that clip into the specific type of pedal system that’s compatible with your cleats.

Different Benefits:

Flat Pedals

There are many benefits of flat or platform pedals. Any type of shoe you decide on will work with this type of pedal. They’re great for a quicker bike-to-run transition because, without changing shoes, you eliminate the need to spend any more time in transition.

Flat pedals also reduce any anxiety you may have about falling over during the bike leg. You can put your feet down to catch yourself, as opposed to if you were clipped into the pedals. Lastly, this is the more common and affordable option of the two kinds of pedals. Flat pedals can be found for $10 – $40.

 

Clipless Pedals

There are also many benefits of a Clipless Pedal (clipless means clipped in). Increase your speed during the bike portion by being clipped into your bike pedals. This allows you to take full advantage of your pedal stroke, which in turn allows you to ride faster once you have mastered the push and pull of it.

A smoother more efficient pedal stroke will lead to better average power output. Being clipped in can actually keep you a little safer while riding because it reduces the chance of your foot slipping off the pedal while climbing, descending, or fatigued. There are endless options when it comes to choosing clipless pedals if that is the

You can go clipless right from the start or use flat pedals until you are more comfortable in the saddle. There are benefits to each type of pedal, but the important thing is to choose what is more comfortable for you. Whatever you choose, spend time becoming familiar with your bike pedals to maximize your efficiency on race morning of Kerrvile Tri!

Learn what causes skipping chains and what you can do about it

There are two main causes for skipping chains. The most common cause is the misalignment of the rear cogs and the chain itself. The second most common cause of skipping chains is wearing on the chain, cassette, and/or the chainrings. Read below to see what causes each and how you can prevent chain skipping and extend the life of your bike.

 

There are several things that can cause the misalignment of the rear cogs and the chain.

  • Improper cable tension. When the tension is incorrect the chain does not sit in line with the corresponding cassette cog and is trying to jump to the next cog. 
  • Dirty cable. The dirt prevents the cable from moving like it needs to. 
  • Slightly bent hanger for the rear derailleur. Can affect the alignment.

 

Skipping chains will wear on the chain, cassette, and/or the chainrings. The chain is the most likely to wear out first since it is made entirely of small, moving parts. Those parts tend to wear out faster when they are dirty or ridden dry. Chains on most modern drivetrains usually last anywhere from 1500 to 2000 miles. This can change depending on your riding style and how well you maintain your bike. If you keep your drivetrain clean and you tend to spin at a slightly higher cadence then you will get more mileage out of your chain. Follow these six steps to clean your drivetrain.

 

When the chain wears, it no longer sits evenly on the cassette cogs and chainrings. As this goes on the chain will eventually start to jump since the chain wears much faster than the cassette and chainrings. If you let your chain go too long it will start to wear down the teeth of the cassette first and then the chainrings. If the chain is replaced before it is too worn the cassette and chainrings will outlast the chain many times over. You’d much rather want to replace your chain than the cassette and chainrings.

 

Pro tip: Use this bike tool to measure chain wear at home. 

 

Learn the benefits and safety tips of swimming in cold water

Swimming in cold water is an exhilarating experience. It’s a fantastic way to get fit, unwind, and strengthen both your mind and body. Swimming laps in chilly water can wake you up and make you feel alive in a way that no warm swimming pool can. For triathletes, cold, open water swimming is a vital part of training. It can provide you with more space and fewer swimmers since everyone won’t flock to the cold swimming areas. Learn why taking an icy dip can be good for you and how to accomplish it safely.

Benefits of Swimming in Cold Water

  1. Increased stress tolerance

Swimming in cold water has many benefits.

Swimming in cold water is scientifically documented to improve psychological markers of stress tolerance. The shock and adaptation you experience make your body thrive under stress in the long run, not just tolerate it. Swimming in cold water increases the adaption even more. Just like any other physical activity, it’s an excellent method to relieve stress.

  1. Improved circulation

Coldwater imposes vasoconstriction on your blood vessels, followed by a period of compensatory vasodilation. This forces your body to warm your core when you enter the cold water. It then creates a dilation when blood rushes to your extremities to warm them up again. This process of alternation between constriction and dilation dramatically improves overall circulation.

  1. Superior calorie burn

Wearing a wetsuit can help you retain body heat.

Swimming against cold waters forces your body to thermoregulate more than usual while you focus your mind and body on the difficult task of swimming. It also improves fat metabolization which makes you leaner and healthier in the long run. Swimming is considered a complete workout because you’re using every part of your body.

 

Follow These Safety Tips

  1. Start small

Gradually immerse yourself in the chilly waters to begin. You can practice at home by slowly increasing the amount of cold water in your shower. It will be difficult to control your breathing initially, but continued training can reduce the amount of time you need to adjust to the cold. When building workouts, begin with shorter distances. This allows your body to acclimate to the temperature and adjust your breathing technique. Lastly, explore these helpful tips for taking your swim from the pool to the open water.

  1. Don’t swim alone

Swimming might be a solo sport, but that shouldn’t stop you from doing it with your friends.

Find your local swimming groups and participate in group swims. Swim partners can provide valuable feedback on your swim style, your kick, and your breathing that can lead to improvements. Partner swimming also provides an extra pair of eyes in case something goes wrong. And, don’t forget about the accountability factor. Knowing your friend or group is meeting you for a workout increases the likelihood that you show up too.

  1. Wear a wetsuit

A wetsuit retains body heat and allows you to focus on the mechanical aspects of swimming first. It also helps to minimize the impact of cold water. You can then focus on your form, sighting, kicking, and breathing in the water. You could eventually graduate to wearing wetsuit shorts.

 

What You Need to Get Started

  • gym bag to carry all your gear
  • towel
  • wetsuit
  • swim goggles
  • extra clothes for after your swim

Swimming in cold water is possibly one of the most challenging feats a triathlete can face. It can be intimidating and difficult, but engaging in a gradually increasing training regimen with small increments can work wonders. Stay safe with our advice and practice often. Eventually swimming in cold water won’t even bother you.

Learn what a bento box is and how you’ll enjoy longer bike rides with it

Cyclists need proper nutrition, especially on longer rides. A bento box is a lightweight and effective way to carry more nutrition for your long bike rides. Carrying a gel or a waffle in a jersey pocket is a good option for short to medium distances. But when you’re increasing your mileage, lack of nutrition can lead to fatigue. During longer training rides you want to carry enough fuel with you without affecting your balance. Before you begin any long rides, make sure your bike has had a proper tune-up.

Bento boxes have a minimalist design, won’t flap around in the wind, and aren’t too clunky. They’re also available in a variety of sizes. Some bikes have fittings designed to install bento boxes. However, most of them are affixed with Velcro straps to your bike frame. The ideal bento box should be small enough to not slow you down or impact your form. But you also want them to be large enough to carry everything you need. Are you ready to add a bento box to your bike? Check out three of our favorites below.

Zone3 Aero Top Tube

The shape of this Zone3 Top Tube allows you to carry what you need without overloading your bike. This bento box can be fitted to the top tube of your bike around the stem. It has loop straps and four hooks. It neatly fits the frame of your bike. You’ll have easy access to everything you need during your ride. This box can also store your phone, keys, or credit card. It’s manufactured from a waterproof material with a large waterproof zipper.

Apidura Top Tube Pack

Apidura is known for its ultralight equipment, like its Top Tube Pack. This box is made from tear-resistant, lightweight, and waterproof Hexalon material. This tough, durable pack is lightweight, weighing only 107 grams. It has dual mounting positions to suit different bikes. The flip-top lid has a magnetic closure making opening and closing very easy. In case your bike does not have top tube mounting points, Apidura provides Velcro straps to strap the pack to the top tube.

Oveja Negra Snack Pack XL

This bento box comes in lots of designs and colors. The Snack Pack remains stable in any road condition due to its wide Velcro top-tube strap. This bag has a large interior and a zipper which can be easily grasped even with gloved hands. The Bolt-On Snack Pack is available in different sizes and bolt-on styles. It weighs 3.6 ounces and is made in the USA.

“Comfort zones: If you live in one too long, that becomes your norm. Get comfortable being uncomfortable.” — David Goggins

If you’ve ever completed a triathlon, you already know what it means to break through your comfort zone. Not everyone can, or will accomplish that in their lifetimes. But when it comes to the off-season, it’s easy to fall into your couch and let the weeks fly by. This article will show you how making new goals during winter training can actually transform you.

 

Where Are You Headed?

So you’ve done a triathlon or more. You’re no stranger to discipline. You know what it means to endure long hours of training just to arrive at that final cathartic moment when you blaze past the finish line.

And now it’s off-season. Winter’s here. You can feel it in your bones. Your calendar’s filled with parties and other fun activities instead of training.

This is when the days grow shorter, and the ground becomes colder. None of these are ideal circumstances for training outdoors. So why not relax and let loose?

Here’s the thing.

You don’t suddenly transform into who you’re supposed to be on race day. You get there — slowly — by sculpting your body day-after-day, inch-by-inch. 

Everything you do before race day is what makes you who you are. In this sense, it’s arguably more important that you participate in winter training than at any other time. 

All else remaining equal, the athlete who doesn’t let themselves go during the off-season has a competitive edge over everyone else who does. 

And just because it’s winter doesn’t mean you can’t train. While it’s not the most ideal time for breaking your past records, it is the best time to focus on maintenance, covering up weaknesses, and becoming injury-proof.

 

Enter The Half Marathon

Whatever goals you might have for the future, it’s a good idea to do half the distance of next season’s race in preparation. You don’t need to exceed a half-marathon.

Stay active, but reduce the length of all your training sessions. This is because you want to focus on recovery, overcoming injuries, and keeping your mind sharp. 

As long as you stick with a consistent regimen, you can always add or subtract volume later. But if you completely ignore winter training then it’ll take a long time for your body to return to its peak condition. You need to keep the engine running so you can jump into action whenever you need to.

Even if you can’t go outside, you can swim, bike, and run on a treadmill indoors. You can fix up imbalances, weaknesses, or take up yoga and strength training to explore new ground.

One of the best ways to experience a half-marathon is through the 3M Half marathon that’s held in Austin, Texas on January 23, 2022. This event features a course that’s 13.1 miles (21.08 km) long. It ends with a post-race party that’s filled with plenty of food trucks serving some of the best tacos and BBQ you’ll ever have. Make sure to sign up before race day to remain eligible.

Or, if you wait a little longer, you can enter the Ascension Seton Austin Marathon, Half Marathon and 5K on February 20th. This course passes through some of the most iconic landmarks in Austin, and is close to some amazing hotels, restaurants, and shops that you can enjoy with your whole family.

Don’t think. Sign up now. Imagine crossing the finish line to a roaring crowd all over again. You’ll only ever regret the things you don’t do and never the things you’ve done.

 

Follow our advice to get better at hydrating while cycling

If you’re new to cycling, one of the challenges to get accustomed to is knowing how to drink water while peddling. Just as there is skill needed to balance, ride curves, and pump uphills, technique is needed to hydrate without losing your balance and falling off your bike. Here are some tips for hydrating while cycling.

Use a squirt-top bottle instead of a cap bottle

A water bottle with a cap requires you to twist it open, which is cumbersome to do with one hand on a bike. When it comes to squirt-top bottles, you can simply use your teeth to open the valve and start drinking with one hand as you control your bike with the other. The convenience a squirt-top bottle offers during cycling allows you to focus on the course more and avoid any accident.

Make use of the bottle cage on your bike

To carry water on the road, you can use a bottle cage on your bike. The bottle cage can be installed between the bars, on the frame, or near the saddle to help you reach your drink with zero fuss. Here are the pros and cons of each bottle cage.

Aero Bottle Cage

This type of cage is designed so that it can be attached to multiple parts of the bike frame. Most other cages can only be mounted to the frame.

Pros
– easiest to access
– option to install it either vertical or horizontal
– using horizontal bottles at the front can decrease aerodynamic drag

Cons
– poor aerodynamics compared to other cages
– using vertical bottles can cause even higher aerodynamic drag.

Bike Frame Cage

These are very common bottle holders that can be placed on the frame, seat post, or handlebars.

Pros
– slim aero bottles on the down tube are less affected by drag and side wind.

Cons
– intermediate aerodynamic drag
– large frame-mounted bottles are expensive and difficult to clean.

Rear Hydration System

This is an aerodynamic bottle that is mounted behind the seat post. These are more so used by competitive triathletes partaking in very long distances.

Pros
– best choice in terms of aerodynamics
– least affected by side wind

Cons
– requires a cage with a strong grip to prevent bottle-launching
– must be made of a favorable material to oppose side sway

Take advantage of the straight-aways

Think about when the ideal time to take a sip is and be ready to do so. Trying to pull the water bottle out on curves is much more challenging, so wait until the trail is flat and straight to get your drink.

Practice, Practice, Practice

Ride up and down your street over and over and practice. Pull your water bottle out of the cage, take a sip, then put it back while moving forward. Start off slow and pick up speed as you get more comfortable.

Pro Tip: Avoid quenching your thirst in one go

Kerrville TriathlonExerting your body through exercise causes dehydration which makes you thirsty. Despite your desire to rapidly quench your thirst it’s important to not drink too much. It can be counterproductive and negatively affect your performance. It is best to avoid drinking mouthfuls and only take a few sips occasionally. You can hydrate yourself effectively without running the risk of drinking too much.

To make sure you do not run yourself dry, you should consume around 600-900 ml of water, per hour, during a triathlon, in addition to other nutritional needs. Although triathlons will have water available in transition and on the run course, not all triathlons provide an aid station on the bike course. Make sure the water bottle(s) on your bike are full so you don’t run out of water.

Hydrating while cycling can be tricky if you’re not used to it. With a secure bottle cage and lots of practice, you’ll be able to master this skill in no time.

What are the different triathlon distances? We cover the basics to help you choose the right one for you

A triathlon is a sports event that rewards your grit, stamina, and endurance. It is a comprehensive competition which includes swimming, cycling, and running. A triathlon is obviously challenging, but you can do well with proper training and a positive mentality.

When you hear triathlon, you might think of mass swims and endurance professionals racing in a full distance triathlon – Ironman – which involves a 2.4 mile swim and 112-mile bike ride before culminating in a 26.2 marathon run. It is a common misconception that is all triathlons can be.

In fact, there are many different triathlon distances, with most of them being very beginner-friendly.

An important factor that determines its difficulty is the distance to be covered. Knowing the distance implications of various triathlons helps you choose the right one for yourself and prepare for it accordingly. Let us look at different triathlon distances.

Super sprint

Super sprint triathlon is a shorter distance sprint triathlon. This distance event usually covers a total distance usually of about 8 miles (3 km). It is perfect for those who want a taste of what triathlon is all about.  The distance breakup can vary greatly in this distance but is usually is 300 to 500 m of swimming, 10 km (6.2 miles) of cycling, and 2-3 miles of running. Despite being considered a beginner’s triathlon because of the short distance, it can be just as tough for veterans that want to see their max speed. 

Sprint

For beginners who have some previous experience and want to take it up a notch, a sprint triathlon is a logical progression after a super sprint. This is one of the most popular distances for triathlons. This distance can vary greatly as well. So be sure to check the specifics when researching triathlons in your area. A sprint triathlon is usually about a total of 15-25 miles. An example of a sprint triathlon distance is a 500m Swim, 14.5 mile Bike, 5 Km Run.

Taking part in a sprint triathlon is a great way to check how your training is going when you are training for a longer distance. Participating in a sprint 6-4 months before an Olympic or Half Distance is a great way to practice and test your race tactics.

Standard/International/Quarter/ Olympic

The name gives away the increased difficulty that comes with this triathlon. This event distance took on the name Olympic after triathlon joined the Olympic Games in 2000. With an overall distance of around 32 miles (51.5 km), this triathlon requires you to exhibit a higher endurance level. It comprises 1500 m (0.9 mile) of swimming, 40 km (24.8 miles) of cycling, followed by 10 km (6.2 miles) of running. 

Training for an Olympic takes significantly more time and planning. There are usually race cut off times at these events, meaning knowing your pace is very important.

Half Distance/ 70.3

Half distance triathlons have become increasingly popular over the years. This 70.3 mile-long strenuous physical course involves covering 1930 m (1.2 miles) in water, 90 km (56 miles) on the bike, and 21 km (13.1 miles) on foot.

Racing a half distance is very obtainable with a structured training program. Half distances can take up to 8.5 hours to complete. Athletes racing in these longer distance events should also pay attention to on-course support and have a nutrition plan. A 70.3 distance is great for athletes that want to focus on endurance over speed. Just like with moving up from a sprint to Olympic, racing a half distance as part of your full distance training is a great idea.

Full Distance

If half distance is not enough for you, you can double the distance by participating in a full distance triathlon. This is commonly associated with the Ironman brand but there are tons of awesome events that offer a full distance triathlon. Covering 140.6 miles (a little over 226 km), a full iron triathlon is extremely tough, even for veterans. It requires you to swim for 3900 m (2.4 miles), cycle for 180 km (112 miles), and run for 42.2 km (26.2 miles).

Athletes racing the 140.6 distance should invest in more specialized equipment like a triathlon bike and potentially a wetsuit. The training regimen for a full distance is much longer and requires a dedicated schedule.

Ultra

From double triathlon to decuple triathlon, every version that exceeds full distance triathlon falls in the ultra category. These triathlons can stretch over a number of days. The most-demanding forms of triathlon fall in this group.

These distances can be seen as milestones for you to reach over your triathlon career. Choosing the most suitable distance, as per your ability and experience, can prove crucial to how you perform in the competition. Make sure to pick a distance that doesn’t push you too much and that you can enjoy it.

Infographic showing the different triathlon distance that are explained within the blog

Why Creating a Relay Team is The Best Way to Tri

Just when you thought Kerrville Tri couldn’t get any more fun, now you can make it a team effort! Recruit friends, family, or co-workers and create your relay team for Kerrville Triathlon’s 10th-anniversary celebration this September 26-27! The 10th annual tri takes place in the heart of the Texas Hill Country, Kerrville, Texas, with scenic views guaranteed. Relay teams can consist of two or three individuals to help you divide and conquer your upcoming tri while having a blast in the process!  Check out a few reasons why relay teams are a great way to get into triathlon and why you should create a team for this year’s Smokin’ Good Tri. 

Try something new

Maybe you know about triathlon, maybe you’re new to the scene. Perhaps you’ve cheered and supported friends at their triathlons, but you’ve never participated in one. Creating a relay team is the best way to get introduced to the sport! Everyone experiences pre-race nerves, especially if it is your first time ever completing a tri! That’s why building a relay team of two or three will help take some of the pressure off so you can focus on the fun. Split the tri three ways, or if your team has two members, one person does the swim, while the other person does the bike and the run. Depending on your individual skill levels, this can be accomplished in any combination. Train with your team, experience the highs and the lows, and get a taste of your new favorite sport.

The more the merrierThe more the merrier when you create a relay team

You can always get one friend to tri along with you, but why do that when you can triple the fun?! A three-person relay team is triple the action so, get two friends or co-workers to create your relay team.  Here are a few ways to take your team spirit to the next level during your training!

  • Create a sweet team name
  • Make custom gear to show your team spirit during training
  • Start thinking about what your team will wear on race day
  • Come up with a team motto
  • Have fun with it!

What feel is your team going for? Will your team opt for funny costumes for laughs out on the course? Or some matching outfits to show your fellow triathletes your team means business! With so many choices, your team will love this. And it’s a great way to really get you excited to keep working towards your goal.

You could use the help

Injuries happen. No matter what lengths you go to to stay safe during training, sometimes they just happen. But are you going to let that stop you from achieving your fitness goals? Not so fast! An injury that may prevent you from swimming might not stop you from cycling or running. creating a relay team for Kerrville Tri to test your boundaries during your team training sessions is a great way to stay active while continuing to strengthen your muscles! Just be sure you’re comfortable and aren’t in pain when training.  You never know, cross-training might just help speed up your recovery!

Making memories at Kerrville Tri with your relay team membersMaking memories

Create a relay team that brings your buddies back together to make some unbeatable memories. Get the old high school/college crew together. Make it a family affair and create an all-sibling team, or give the ‘rents a challenge you know they won’t be able to refuse! Take on a new challenge with your run group and create a relay team as a way to expand your fitness routine. Whatever direction you go, make this something you won’t soon forget. Participating with loved ones by your side and cheering you on, creating a relay team will make your Kerrville Tri experience unlike any other. 

Push Your Limits

Triathlon is a fun way to push your body’s limits, but we know making time to train for three sports can be difficult on top of everything else life throws your way. If you have a tight schedule and know you won’t be able to properly train for multiple disciplines, focus on one or two disciplines to push your limits! Find someone who swims like a fish in the water. Add a member who gets speeding tickets on their bike for going too fast. Pick a runner whose feet seem to never touch the ground because of their speed. Assemble this super team and hold each other accountable to keep up with training! Before you know it, you’ll be ready to show up on race day ready to set some new records or even take home 1st place!

Whatever your reason for creating a relay team, there are two things left to do: build your team to divide and conquer Kerrville Tri and register!