In a sprint triathlon, preparation is so important because when the big day arrives, you want to be ready.
The triathlon will have three stages and you want the transition between the stages to happen as smoothly as possible.
The three stages are – SWIMMING – CYCLING – RUNNING.
The sprint triathlon that I am preparing for in 2022 has a swim old lake pool. It was built for the Olympics in the 70s.
The swim is 400m long.
The cycle will be 20 km around this lake pool, we have to cycle around it 4 times.
The 5 km run is partly on the grounds and partly on the road and through a parking lot. We have to run the route twice.
preparation for the swim
When you start out then you may or may not be ready to get all the triathlon gear. This will be my third sprint triathlon. I am still using most of the same gear that I used for the first sprint triathlon. I am super slow to commit. Next year maybe?
In preparation for the swim leg of the race you will need the following:
- swimming cap – this is necessary for your training as it protects your hair. It also keeps your hair from flopping into your face. For thick hair, it may be helpful to wear your own cap and put the race cap over it.
- swimming goggles – this is a must. Have one that you always wear in training and have a spare with you too. Having to find something just before a race will be stressful if you do not carry a spare set.
- swimsuit – (I do not use a triathlon suit yet, maybe next year!!!) I have a sports swimsuit and it has served me well for three years.
- swim shorts – I found a great pair of swim shorts three years ago and I still use them. I can swim, cycle and run in them.
- sports watch
after the swim
When you have finished your swim, you can walk or run to the first transition (aka – T1). Remove your goggles and take off your swimming cap en route.
preparation for the cycle
As you enter T1 you will find the bike and cycling equipment you will be needing for the cycling leg. Do not put the things you’ll be needing for your run here.
- the bike – when I did the first triathlon, then I used my city bike. It is the one I use for everyday life. It even has a basket on it for shopping. I took the basket off for the race;)
- there were others at the sprint triathlon with a very similar bikes. You will not feel out of place if that’s what you use. I have now bought a secondhand triathlon bike and I love it.
- you would also be absolutely fine using a normal racing bicycle. There are also people at a sprint triathlon with the super light, super something bikes. They are impressive but not necessary.
- cycling shoes & clips – for my first sprint triathlon preparation, I did not have clips on my pedals. I just used my running shoes for the cycle. This made it easy to go into the run after the cycle.
- I now have clips on my pedals and after the swim, I change into my cycling shoes.
- the helmet – this is very important to have too, you will not get far without one. Put this on first.
- sunglasses – I find them to be very important to have. I like to put them on after you have put on and fastened your helmet.
- race number belt – you will also already have clipped in your race number. It will then be easy to put on. For the cycle leg, the race number will be facing to the back. When you run, you can slip it to the front.
- water bottle – use this to fuel yourself for the rest of the race, you will be thankful you did. I like to fill my water bottle up with an isotonic drink.
- towel – to stand on and dry your feet
after the cycle
You will be racking your bike in the second transition area (aka – T2). If you need things for your run they should be placed here.
Take a quick sip of your isotonic drink.
preparation for the run
All I need to do is take off my helmet, and put on my running shoes, and peaked cap. I can run in my sports swimsuit and swim shorts. Both work well for me.
In preparation for the run leg of the race, you will need the following:
- running shoes
- peaked sun hat
sprint triathlon preparation wrap up
Getting ready for a sprint triathlon is daunting.
I am no athlete. I am 57 years old and love trying new things. Sometimes I do this alone and sometimes with a friend or family member.
It’s definitely more fun with someone else, but not absolutely necessary.
I also cannot join a triathlon club because I live in the countryside. Living far away from everyone else is a problem that cannot be fixed.
You too may have challenges getting going. Face them, and then have fun anyway.
Doubts are also with me every single day. I have to face them and then have fun anyway.
If you want to give a sprint triathlon a try – GO FOR IT.
What I love about doing the sprint triathlon in Germany is the name in German. Here we call it – JEDERMAN, this translates as EVERYMAN, EVERYONE, EVERYBODY, and ANYONE.
So, I think that includes you too. Give it a go and you will love it.
The fun of trying something new and the challenge it gives really does stretch you. It is totally worth it though.
On this journey, I have learned to ride a triathlon bike with clips.
I have refreshed some swimming skills.
And, in the running, I am building endurance.