Trigirl’s Top Time-Saving Triathlon Tips
The triathlon season is kicking off! You’ve decided on a race schedule, you’re training, maybe you’ve even completed an early season race or two. You’re working hard towards achieving your triathlon goals, but why work harder than you have to?
Let us make your life a little easier with our top time-saving triathlon tips, guaranteed to make your race season faster, simpler and more fun.
- Lay out everything so that it’s visible and in order. For example, put your helmet closest to you, so that when you come out of the swim, it is the easiest thing to grab. Being able to see everything also helps to guarantee that you won’t forget something you need, like an energy gel or sunglasses on a bright day.
- Leave your helmet with the straps open, facing the right direction, and leave your sunglasses open inside the helmet. Everything will go on easily! Think the same with bike shoes and socks, etc!
- Use a race belt. This makes it easy to put your number on; no fussing about with pins. Leave the race belt open in your transition area, so it’s easy to click it on and go.
- Have your bike in the right gear for the terrain that you’ll be exiting onto. If there is a hill right away, be sure that you leave your bike in a low gear. Even on flat ground, it’s good have the bike a gear or two lower than you’ll ride in for an easy start.
- Make sure you know where your transition spot is! Nothing wastes time like running past your rack, looking around in confusion and panicking. Also know entrances and exits for quick… entrances and exits!
The biggest time loss in relation to the swim must be trying to get your wetsuit off. Make it easier by:
- Using a non-petroleum lube at your wrists and ankles
- As you exit the water, scoop some extra water into the top of your wetsuit. The more wet your suit is, the easier it is to get off.
- If you struggle around the ankles, stand on your suit with the other foot for easy exit (being careful not to puncture your wetsuit, of course!)
Saving time on the bike can cost a lot of money – people spend hundreds of pounds to lighten their bikes by just a few grams. If you want to save time without the big spend, the most important thing is to ride aerodynamically. This means:
- No clothes flapping around in the wind (a Trigirl trisuit can help with that!)
- Keeping your elbows and knees in and using the different positions on your handlebars when appropriate .
If you are more advanced and want to start getting serious about speed, a clip-on pair of aerobars is an inexpensive way to go more aero (just be sure to practice in them before race day). A bike fit to put you into a more aerodynamic position can also save time without the cost of a time-trial bike. Just be sure that you don’t sacrifice comfort for speed or you may not reap the benefits. Additionally, learning to keep your shoes clipped into your pedals (taking them on and off on the bike) can save a lot of time – but only if you’re good at it!
- Grab your sunglasses, race number (if it is not already on) and hat and put them on as you are running out of transition, rather than putting everything on while standing around.
- Consider lace locks or elastic laces. They make getting your shoes on a breeze and save you re-tying untied shoes out on the run.
- Smile when it feels tough. Smiling relaxes you physically as well as mentally, so you’re not wasting energy by hunching up your shoulders or keeping tension in your face, ultimately giving you more energy to go fast!