How I'm Training for My First Triathlon
Let me preface this by saying: I'm no rockstar athlete. I only recently faced my fears of diving in the deep end of the pool, and as of a few weeks ago, I hadn't saddled up on a bike since it had metallic ribbons shooting out of the handlebars. But the one thing I've got goin' for me is that my heart beats for running.
However, my passion for the pavement drove me into a deep burn-out earlier this year. So in an effort to reignite my love affair with my favorite sport, I decided to take a bit of a break and turn to something new. Something completely out of my norm and absolutely crazy. Something only people who have gone mad attempt: a triathlon.
Now don't get all impressed just yet: it's only a sprint triathlon (I haven't completely lost my marbles.) On June 3rd, I will be tackling a 200-yard swim, 8-mi. bike ride, and 2-mi. run with 1,000 other women, and it might just be my toughest endeavor yet.
It's called the Ramblin' Rose Triathlon, and it's this sweet lil' series that tours the South and celebrates the empowerment of women. Every year I see pics of badass ladies smiling ear-to-ear 'cus of all the fun they had, and I kick myself for not signing my name on the dotted line. So this time around, I'm stepping out of my comfort zone and giving it a go. And to prepare for it, I'm taking on 12 weeks of peddlin', paddlin', and pacin'.
So are you tri-curious about how I'm going to pull it off?
Here's a peek at what my training currently looks like:
I've never raced in a swim meet, I've barely mastered a doggy paddle, and I really only like to go to the pool when there's a hunky lifeguard on duty. So I think it's safe to say that learning how to swim competitively will be my biggest hurdle.
My Workouts: Every Tuesday and Thursday, I make a splash at my local public pool and swim anywhere between 500-800m: some freestyle and some breaststroke. I try to do as many laps as I can without taking a break, but I do slow things down if I feel like I'm going to, well, drown. I really don't have much variation with my workouts, because I'm not working for speed. My race-day goal is simply to: 1) finish the 200 yd. swim without stopping, and 2) make it out of the water alive.
Similarly, I've never been very good at cycling. My parents were badass bikers back in their day, and ever since, they've been convinced that one day I would fall in love with it too. Well guess what... that day still hasn't come. Cycling has definitely been my least favorite part of the puzzle, and for that reason, I have low expectations for when I'm in the saddle on race day.
My Workouts: It's not easy to make time for a leisurely bike ride during the workweek, but I do try to squeeze in at least one 30-minute workout, usually on Wednesday mornings. Then, when the weekend rolls around, I devote my Saturday mornings to a longer, more intense ride, which usually lasts 45min. to 1hr. On these rides, I make it a point to tackle hillier courses, to test my legs and work the 🍑.
Now this is the one arena that really don't have to train for at all. Given that I've run, oh I don't know, a gagillion different races, I'm really not concerned about how I'll do on foot. And since it's the final obstacle of the triathlon, I'm hoping I can really shine and finish my race off with an all-out sprint.
My Workouts: My running has really taken a backseat with all of these new sports I'm taking on. But I still find time for at least 2 runs a week, usually lasting no more than 30 minutes. My focus for these workouts is more about building speed and focusing my foot strike (a never-ending battle).
On top of all that fun, I also try to throw in some yoga, ab workouts, and evening walks with the fam. As of right now, I'm feeling super confident for race day. But I still have to devote a solid week to learning the in's and out's of a completing a triathlon: from what to wear to how you transition from one sport to the next. So if y'all have any tri tips, please please please comment them below!
Wish me luck! I'm either going to have the time of my life or I will die tri-ing.😂