I'm 42 years old and have always kept active and in shape. Recently I was getting ready for a hiking trip to Jackson Hole/Grand Teton National Park and started cross training. Normally I ride an eliptical so no weight bearing on the knees. This causes me alot of grief when I try to hike and bike, the knees just don't take it. So I started riding my mountain bike on the road to prepare for a ride across the continental divide and I started jogging again to help the knees handle all the downhill hiking. We rode 30miles to the continental divide and hiked 15 miles gaining over 4000ft in elevation. The biking caused some temporary distress in my knees but I recovered. Anyway, I got the wild thought that I might be able to do a Tri since I was in such good shape and started swimming some in my pool at home. I've already signed up for a "My First Triathalon" in 10 days. I have continued running 3-4 days a week but only two miles each time. I ride the eliptical at least four days a week for 30minutes and I've been biking three days a week @14 miles each time. Yes, a few days I do morning and evening excercies. The swimming could improve, it'll be my downfall. But I plan on working alot on that before my next Tri. My question is... Am I crazy? Or is it doable for what I've been training? I starting to worry now, more about knowing where to go and knowing the course. Do they mark it well?? Guess I just need some reassurance from some of you experienced Triatheletes. Thanks, Sandi
Sandi I am always happy to welcome newcomers to the land of tri-ing. I am sure one you do this first one you will be hooked.
To answer your question, do they mark the course? Almost all of the Triathlons I have done are quite well marked where to go. You'd have to activlely try to get lost. Many times there are people on the corners of turns directing traffic. Also, once you get there, if you have any questions feel free to ask anyone, everyone is happy to help newcomers, event staff espically. Is this event going to be a "sprint" distance event?
It sounds like the ride the divide was quite an experience for you! Do you take anything for your knees? Were you a runner when you were younger?
It sounds like you have a good bike base, the run if its a sprint may end up being 3 miles, so a little longer than what you trained for. The swim just be sure to take your time and Breathe! You should work a little bit on doing a brick or 2 before your "race" to get a feeling for biking then running right away. Also, when swimming be careful of the differences between the open water swim and a pool. Its a lot more hectic and easy to get caught up in the moment. Anthony_all3 has some good tips in another thread for this.
Just remember the purpose is to have fun, and remember no high fiber foods before the race!
The event is a .4km swim, so it's less than a sprint for beginners. The bike and run are the same. The swim is what I'm worried about. Seems like that's a common problem for alot of people. I just don't swim. Never really have. Although my oldest son swam in high school and will help me with technique. I live by a lake and will get in this weekend for an open water swim. I started taking glucosamine a few weeks ago for the knees. Yes, I was a runner. Ran track until my senior year when a back injury put me down. Ran the hurdles- thus the weak knees. Thanks for your time. Sandi ps. what's a brick
A brick is a training ride on your bike followed immediately by a run. The idea is to get used to the spaghetti leg feeling you will get transitioning from one event to the next. As far as the swimming, I wouldn't worry too much about it. It sounds like you will have ample time in the water with your son to help as well. The swim really goes by so quickly. Even the strongest swimmers don't get much time to really swim in a sprint distance becasue the first few minutes you are just trying to find your own spot in the water with lots of swimmers thrashing around you. It will be over in about 10 minutes, even if you are slow. The bike is probably the most important, because that is where you will spend the most time. Good luck in your first tri. I know you will get as hooked as I have. It really is alot of fun.
I almost didn't reply to this thread because I am new to this sport as well. In fact, I just did my first triathlon 2 days ago. While I certainly can't give you any training tips, I can offer my perspective from a newbies eyes. I had some of the same concerns with not knowing how easy it would be to follow the course. As it turns out, the course was well marked and even had people in some places letting you know that "this was the sprint turn around" or "keep going for the Olympic turn around". But more importantly, I arrived as soon as the transition area opened up to set up and have time to look at some of the course. This also gave me time to talk to some of the athletes setting up and found everyone to be very helpful. Many of them had run that same tri the year before and could offer insight to how well the course was marked. They also had really good general tips. I found it to be a great sense of community, and at the risk of sounding like a drunken frat boy saying, "I love you man", I think the strong community made crossing the finish line that much richer just feeling the support of everyone around. I guess this would be the appropriate time to thank all the experienced triathletes for being so helpful.
Thanks for your reply, it's encouraging to know it was a great experience for you. I am sure I will find it to be the same, if I survive the swim that is, lol. At this point my goal is to finish and I am sure I will do so. It may be dead last but that is ok with me (no one that knows me believes me when I say that, I've been a bit competitive over the years). I am hoping that I will enjoy the adventure and go on to sign up for another Tri within a few months. I love the training and staying in shape. Thanks again and good luck on your next adventure!! Sandi