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Tri noob

I'm doing my first event in about 4 weeks now. It wasn't really my idea but i'm happy to give it a shot. Basically my Mrs talked her brother, my dad and my sister into it then i got asked in front of them all (sneaky) so i had to comply really. Now i'm pretty unfit and have managed to pile on a couple of extra stone since starting a new job 18 months ago so i'm tipping the scales at about nineteen stone when i checked at the weekend I have always been pretty active but over the last couple of years my fitness has dropped dramatically.

Cycling will no doubt be my best event of the three but my main aim is to beat the times of the people who talked me into it although they are all far fitter than me yet i'm A LOT faster than them on the bike, except i'm unsure on my dads pace as he is also quite competitive, keeps himself in good shape and i havent had a chance to train with him. He is also borrowing some decent kit off a mate... the sly git.

I'm not worried at all about not finishing except in the case of a mechanical which would annoy me greatly since i feel, even unfit, its just mind over matter. The greatest problem though is the fact that the event is in four weeks time so i need to get training right away (instead of typing at the computer really)

It is only a fun event so the distances are 200 metre Swim - 23 km Cycle - 2.5 km Run and the swim is in a pool.

I'm mainly after any tips for late and last minute preperation and training as i'm in it now so i've just gotta MTFU and get on with doing the best i can. Oh, and the event is http://www.fun2tri.co.uk/Warwickshire-new/index.htm

Thanks for any help


  • Hello,

    If the event is in 4 weeks, you've got 3 weeks to train and week to taper (rest/reduced volume) into the event.

    I'd say look to build up over the 3 weeks then reduce your effort in the last week going into the event.

    perhaps do some intervals during the 2nd week.

    What ever happens why don't you look at this a taster to see if you like triathlon, then pic another event with 12 or more weeks to train for and really see how far you can go!

    all the best with your first race.
  • shadowone1shadowone1 Posts: 1,408

    First things first - instead of worrying about the event, why don't you relax about it. Its a fun event and you will absolutely love it when you arrive at the event. So sit back (figure of speech), and relax.

    You have 4 weeks to do some form of training, so get some time in the saddle and when you get off the saddle go for little 10-15min jogs. When you get off the bike in the tri you will have jelly legs so best to try and get used to that feeling now.

    More importantly than all of the above - just have fun.
  • Sorry to ask a silly question, but can you swim?

    I don't mean Phelps-like speed, but are you certain about your ability to do 200m then get out feeling like you could take on a bike ride?

    If you're not a regular swimmer, just relying on the fact that you could swim as a kid and are happy splashing about, then you might be surprised how much energy you can waste in the water.

    Just saying make sure you've given it a go so you'll be confident of enjoying your day rather than it turning into a frustration.

    I reckon if you can squeeze in each week: a 60 min and a 30 min bike ride, do a little run off the short bike and maybe another 30 min run, and get down to the pool once or twice; you'll be fine so long as you don't push yourself to be a hero!

    But mainly, as shadow said, have fun.
  • ZacniciZacnici Posts: 1,385
    Agree with Bopomofo

    The swim is usually the weakest part for many triathletes and I suggest you may want to devote some time at that in the 3 weeks or so before the event for two reasons:
    1 So you don't get out of the pool completely fagged out before the bike and run - practice getting out of the pool by the side by the way, unlikely you will have steps - if major problem let the organisers know now.
    2. If you have put on weight swimming will give you a good cardio workout, it is non-impact and will serve you well for the bike and run.

    Bike, as S11 says you are not going to get much faster but the important thing is to get some rides in and then immediately go for a short jog to get used to the jelly legs.

    Run, as above, don't be a hero, aim to finish.

    Practice your transition technique i.e what will you need to switch from swim to bike and then from bike to run; have it neatly laid out and in a logical order. Prep your bike. You don't say what type you have but strip everything that is not necessary off. What are you wearing? Swim trunks? Shorts and vest for bike and run?

    Read the instructions, then agian, then again.
    Go early, drive the bike route, better still get one ride in at least on the route beforehand if possible.
    Get registered in plenty of time
    Have a look at what the others are doing, ask questions, we are a friendly lot and you will get help and suggestions on the day.
    Attend the briefing
    Big rule, helmet on before you touch the bike, rack the bike before helmet off.
    Last Km on the bike switch to high gear so your legs spin faster, that reduces jelly legs.
    Listen to what the marshalls say, don't argue or swear, this is not football you will get disqualified.
    Most marshalls wil recognise newcomers and will advise rather than penalise, take what they say with good grace they really do want you to have a good day not spoil it
    Where possible thank the volunteers, those guys are fanstastic and make it all happen.
    You will get lots of cheers and support.

    Most importantly enjoy it.
  • Thanks for all the advice folks. i'm going to try and get in the pool a couple of times a week and i have found out my local pool offers something called masters swim which i think is coaching and all that and its included in the gym membership, i'll check when i go to boxercise tomorrow though. I'm planning my first swim tomorrow after boxercise so i'll see how i do i'll lt you know tomorrow As for the rest of it, i normally play football matches on saturdays and sundays but i'm thinking of missing the next couple of matches so i dont pick up any avoidable injurys pre event since i always seem to do something every week that takes a couple of days or so to recover from which is far from ideal with such a short training period.
  • Ok, had a sesh down at the local pool today since work clashed with the pools opening times the rest of last week. It went badly. my breathing is terrible and i keep doing it at the wrong times like a complete tool. I even went as far as exhaling to the side and trying to breathe in with my head in th water it didnt work for some reason :roll: so now i just have to keep plugging away. i didnt manage to string together enough lengths for the distance either and ended up just breathing both sides and looking like a loon splashing about i'll keep plugging away though. I think i would be ok if i could sort out my breathing and technique, even just a little bit... more time in the water is a must now.
  • ZacniciZacnici Posts: 1,385
    Don't be too hard on yourself. I am a rubbish swimmer (I used to be quite good but then arthritis does that for you) and on my first 400 swim I was extactic to beat my 12 minute target time. There will be people stopping at the end of each length, sometimes part way through; its your first event, accept the fact that you are not going to win and aim to finish.

    With the first one under your belt you will feel more confident and over the off season be able to train more purposefully, as suggested a couple of lessons would be ideal, why not join a club?

    After 4 years I have finally bitten the bullet and joined a tri club, they have been very welcoming and in fact met a forumite for the very first time, Nivagh, when I took part in the club relays a few weeks back. I fully intend to us the training sessions, the swim in particular, so that next year I will perform better and I've even bought a club outfit to compete in (cos it matches my bike's colour - these things are important ).

    Good luck.
  • R34PERR34PER Posts: 8
    Well, did the (fun) event today. i set myself a target to aim for but i failed To be fair i also set pre vent targets for losing weight and training but i seemed to forget about the weightloss but i managed some training. so it was a case of starting with about 4 weeks training and about 20 stone to lug round so i suppose i'm glad i finished...even in the crappy weather.

    I started out well on the swim but i struggle with my swim breathing so i use a nose clip to stop me sucking up loads of water... which popped off at the start of my third length and i couldnt find it so it all went downhill rapidly from there after snorting a few gallons of water a length, struggling to get oxygen in and generally losing form. plus cramp in both feet an my right hamstring... result = 200m swim in 13min 45sec

    I spent a little extra time in T1 and tried to stretch out a little to get rid of the cramp but it kept coming back so i jut decided it was best to dig in and ride. Obviouly it slowed me down and at times it got really bad and i considered stopping but then i got into a nice rythm and started passing people (and being pased by some very rapid folk)... result= 23km ride in 50 minutes 57 econds

    I was dead by the run and it was like a real mud bath, especially as i had a late start time and people had time to churn it up so i struggled and postd a crappy time here too at 20 minute 22 seconds with quite a bit of walking involved.

    All in all, a good day out and plenty of happy looking competitors finishing and i look forward to shedding some lbs and posting some better times next time

    I think it was 64th out of 80 in the mens fun category for me in the end although i really feel i sold myself a bit short there.
  • Well done R34PER - you should be poud. Your first event under your belt, and most of the rest of the country spent this rainy Sunday watching people hitting small white balls across beautifully manicured lawns into little holes.

    The noseclip, the cramp, the mud; all part and parcel of it. You are now a Triathlete. Congrats. I really hope that you stick with it, and hit whatever training targets you set yourself for the winter months, and get stuck into some events in 2011, and keep enjoying it, cos that is why we all do it in the end.

    Well done!
  • risris Posts: 1,002
    R34PER wrote:

    i use a nose clip to stop me sucking up loads of water... which popped off at the start of my third length and i couldnt find it so it all went downhill rapidly from there after snorting a few gallons of water a length, struggling to get oxygen in and generally losing form. plus cramp in both feet an my right hamstring... result = 200m swim in 13min 45sec
    i have the same problem, i think if i lost my noseclip i'd struggle to finish one length in 13mins.

    i think you did superbly for your first event - particularly if you know that you still have some pounds to shift! you've now got a whole winter of working on technique and getting some of the weight off so that you can storm some events next year!

    like birdyman says - you took all that the tri-gods could chuck at you and stuck it out to finish.
  • shadowone1shadowone1 Posts: 1,408
    I'm the same, if I lose my noseclip then game over. I lost my noseclip when at IMUK this year and it was a huge major catastophe for me.... then after hunting for it I found 10mins before the swim start lying on the ground!!!

    You deserve a huge pat on the back for your achievements, now you know you can do it.
  • R34PERR34PER Posts: 8
    i think i'm going to have a go at the same (fun distance) event in may just to try and beat my time then have a bash at a sprint after that.

    any idea of the best place to find upcoming events like tri's and duathlons?
  • R34PERR34PER Posts: 8
    And thanks for the support folks.
  • ZacniciZacnici Posts: 1,385
    Hi just picked up the thread - you say you missed your goal but you omitted the primary goal which is to finish so well done you.

    You now know what went well and what didn't but the important thing you know is the feeling of crossing that finish line.

    During the off season keep up the swimming, gently roll out the running whether outside or on a treadmill.As the pounds come off you will get fitter, faster and more confident.
    For evnts in
    http://www.britishtriathlon.org/triathl ... utton.y=13
    Or here:
    http://www.runnersworld.co.uk/defaultev ... te&sp=&v=2
    Well done.
  • R34PERR34PER Posts: 8
    Thanks for the links. I have booked up for the stratford tri in may (the fun event again so i can attempt to beat my time) and i'm thinking of entering the Trentham tri at the sprint distance. i'd have a go at the classic but a 1500m swim i think is a little beyond me really for now. Anyone have any experiance of this event?
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