Somehow, back in the dead of winter, I convinced two of my BRF’s (best running friends) to sign up for their first sprint triathlon. Now that we are days away from our race, I promised them a little info on how things will work on race day. So Holly & Laura this post is for you!
The transitons (T1 & T2) are essentially a 4th component of a Triathlon race and can really be chaotic and confusing to a newbie. I preface all this information by stating that I am not an expert or a tri coach. I have done quite a few tri races myself in the past 8 years so this is suggested info based on my own experiences.
Of course we will start with a list of gear. Using Racechecklist.com you can create your own printable checklist for all types of races (triathlon, century, marathon, etc). Here’s what I came up with for our race this weekend:
I suggest wearing to the race what you plan to swim in. Most people wear tri shorts or a tri suit. Less to carry and pretty much ensures you aren’t forgetting it. I plan to swim in a pair of tri shorts and a sports bra. I will have my goggles and cap in my bag. Wearing a pair of flip flops to the start helps keep your feet clean while you are waiting to jump in. I will be wearing some sort of warm up top depending on the temperature.
When we go pick up our packets the day before, we will have the opportunity to scope out the transition area and get an idea of how things will work race morning. I like to count how many rows in my bike will be so I know exactly where to find my gear. It can be somewhat disorienting emerging from the swim and running towards the bike area. For me, counting the rows out in my head is somewhat calming.
I like to use a brightly colored or patterned towel that I know I will recognize.
T-1- The Bike leg-I arrange my gear on my towel in the order that I will be using it. I’ve put my socks into my bike shoes and turned them open. I’ve found that sprinkling a little baby powder into my socks helps to put them onto wet feet a little easier. I will do that race morning.
My sunglasses are open inside of my helmet. My bike gloves are inside my helmet. Once my bike is racked in place race morning, my helmet will be on top of the handle bars. I have one water bottle on my bike and a back up on my towel.
I find it hard to fuel on the bike because I really don’t like to let go of the handlebars too much. One trick I started doing a few years back was to tape a small ziploc bag with my gu or gels in it. That way they are easy to grab out. If there are any left after the bike, I can throw them into my pocket and take on the run.
I also take note of where the “bike mount” line is when I am setting up my transition.
T2-The Run-Coming off of the bike, I will be throwing my bike gear down and switching to my untied running shoes. I have my race belt with my number attached inside of my shoe so I don’t forget it. Transition 2 is usually a little quicker.
Mistakes to avoid:
-Forgetting where your bike is. I’ve seen people walking around aimlessly before.
-Mounting your bike too soon or dismounting too late.
-Forgetting your helmet (I did that once and had to go back)
Sounds simple right? Now we have to just go out there and be amazing. I am so excited to be doing this race with my friends and celebrating with them after they become triathletes. You both got this girls-No Sweat!
Any other tips for the newbies?
linking up and Anne Marie