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Professional Swim Advice for Rookie Triathletes

Complete at least one open water swim before Rookie Triathlon

Hundreds of Rookies will complete their first triathlon at Rookie Triathlon on Sunday, May 6th. If you’re training for your first triathlon like William, then you’ve probably never completed an open water swim. Perhaps all of your training has taken place in the pool. Until Tuesday, April 24th, all of William’s swim training has taken place in the pool. Check in with his training and see how his open water swims went. Paul “Barny” Williams, William’s coach and professional triathlete, provides some advice and talks about the importance of completing at least one open water swim before race day. Watch the video below and feel free to share the advice with your Rookie friends!

Beginner Triathlon Gear Shopping Check List

Must Have Beginner Triathlon Gear

These are the essential items you will need to get you from the start to finish of your first triathlon

Beginner Triathlon Bike - The Rookie Tri triathlon gearBike

Any Bike. It can be anything from your uncle’s old bike that has been in the garage or the mountain bike you take out riding with your kids. Now, be sure that the bike is in good repair by taking it to a local shop. Sometimes if the bike is really old or in disrepair, you may spend just as much on fixing it up as you will a beginner bike. A second note is that a road bike and bike with gears will make your triathlon journey a lot more comfortable.  You will be able to go further with less effort and will have more “in the tank” when you head out for a run.

Beginner Triathlon Helmet- The Rookie Tri triathlon gear

Helmet

Helmets should be replaced every 5-8 years and definitely after any crash– no matter how small. Helmets are the same safety level at any price tag so there is no need to open up the wallet for the cool $300 ones. These higher end helmets will be equipped with more ventilation and more aerodynamics. Some helmets do come is sized so make sure and check when you purchase. A loose fitting helmet is not safe.

Beginner Triathlon Tri Shorts- The Rookie Tri triathlon gear

Bike or Tri Shorts

Really you can wear what you want, just remember that transition is open and there is nowhere to change in private. If you want to be comfortable while training and racing, You will want a nice pair of athletic shorts. First, these can really be anything but cotton, as cotton will not wick away water and can lead to chaffing, ouch! A basic tri short with a little bit of padding will make your bike-riding experience much more enjoyable. The best part is that these shorts will last long after your triathlon debut. They are perfect for cross training, cycle classes, and even going for runs.

Beginner Triathlon Goggles - The Rookie Tri triathlon gear

Goggles

Most importantly, there is no perfect goggle since everyone’s face is shaped a little different. Visit a local swim shop and try on a few models to find what works for you. Leaky goggles will derail your swim and can make swimming a lot more difficult if you are having to stop and constantly adjust for goggles, therefore don’t skimp and just buy the cheapest ones at the store. Once you have tested them out a few times, we suggest buying a second pair in a different tint so that you have something for all conditions.

Beginner Triathlon Running shoes for triathlon gear

Running Shoes

If they are comfortable, they are good to go. Even if they are just the shoes you got because you liked the way they looked. Have some shoes that aren’t comfortable? Well, you can still run in those — you will just be, well uncomfortable at the end of your run. 🙂

beginner triathlon sports bra- triathlon gear

Sports Bra

Ladies, even if you decide to use your swimsuit for your first triathlon you are going to want to wear a good sports bra underneath. You will want something you are comfortable running in. If you have some areas that run, like under the armpits you can put some Vaseline or Body Glide on in the morning to help with chaffing.

Also Recommended:

  • Flat Kit
  • Hat/Visor
  • Water Bottle for the Bike
  • Bright Towel for Transition
  • Sunscreen
  • Race belt

Totally Optional:

  • Socks
  • Bike Shoes with clip-in pedals
  • Sports Watch
  • Sunglasses
  • Transition Bag
  • Wetsuit

 

 

4 Ways to Expand Your Triathlon Training

Training for a triathlon might feel a bit overwhelming, but you’re not alone and we’re here to help! Below you’ll find 4 ways to expand your training and make some friends along the way.

Austin Tri Club- Beginner Triathlon Training Group

Austin Tri Club bike ride.

1. Join the Austin Tri Club!

Austin Triathlon Club is an all-volunteer, member-run community of triathletes across the Austin area. Club dues are only $40/year. Yes, you read that right! Member benefits are plentiful and include new triathlete mentoring, club workouts, monthly happy hours, and a welcoming group that’ll help you achieve your goals!

2. Run and Bike with Austin Duathletes

Austin Duathletes is a fun and FREE group with runs and bike rides throughout the year. They have a standing Monday Morning Run at 5:45 with 3 and 5-mile routes, as well as other special events. You can join them on March 24th for a bike ride on Walnut Creek Trail with 20 and 30-mile options. Wheels down from Tamale House on E. 6th Street at 8 a.m. Follow their Facebook page, just show up, or email the Duathlete leader, Panther, to get more involved.

Austin Duathletes Run and Bike Training Group

3. Join The Rookie Tri Facebook Group!

This group is a place for Rookie Participants, Veterans, and those who are just interested in triathlon, to share support, advice, training adventures, and friendship. Join the group to share your stories, pictures, and wisdom!

4. Join Bicycle World on March 24-25th with their beginner triathlon training weekend.

The weekend will include bike and run workouts as well as workshops. Workshops include How to prepare and what to expect on race day for your First Triathlon, General Tips for each swim, bike and run, and basic maintenance of gear. There will also be an in-store guide to gear selection where you can see what you might be missing in your triathlon gear as well as an open Q&A session. 

While triathlon is seen as an individual sport you do not have to train alone. There are groups to join that are both online and in town. Happy Training!