Hi MizFit readers!
My name’s Jess. I blog over at Jess Runs and I’m really excited to hang out with you today!
If you’re a long time reader of MizFit, you know this blog is all about not having to fit in to one style of working out or another.
Well after having been a dedicated runner for six years, I am taking a step off the runner path, and trying something new.
Several months ago, I signed up for my first triathlon.
Going in, I knew absolutely nothing about the sport of triathlon. Heck, prior to registration, I hadn’t ridden a bike since I was about ten years old.
Now I own this beauty:
In just a few short months, I’ve learned a ton and wanted to share it with you, because hey, if I can do this crazy triathlon thing, you can too!
- Training for three sports at once is tricky, but it also lets you be super flexible with your schedule. I used to lock myself into really rigid running training plans, but tri training makes it so easy to swap workouts. If you’re legs are feeling burnt out, you can swim or the bike. If it’s raining outside, you can go to the pool and move your bike ride to a day when the weather is nicer. The flexibility is an amazing bonus I wasn’t expecting.
- You don’t need fancy equipment. Sure the top competitors all have bikes that cost more than my car, but if you’re trying something new to see if you like it, there’s no sense in wasting money on expensive gear you may only use once. I will recommend you invest in a pair of tri shorts though. After doing my bike ride last week with no padding to protect my butt, I realized that a pair of tri shorts might actually be a worthwhile purchase. Seriously, your butt will thank you.
- Don’t worry if you fall off your bike, apparently it happens to everyone. Or at least that’s that what everyone told me when I crashed mine a few weeks ago. They might have just been trying to make me feel better. On that note, invest in a good helmet!
- Triathlons have a lot of rules, and for a while that really turned me off. I didn’t want to have to learn a whole bunch of special rules so I wouldn’t get disqualified. I’ve since learned the rules are important, but you most likely won’t break them. Just make sure you don’t ride too closely to anyone on the bike, and you should be OK!
- It’s OK to be a complete newbie and ask what may seem like silly questions. I lean heavily on my friend Zach who is an experienced biker to answer all my many, many questions about safely riding a bike. I also rely on my blog readers who have done a ton of triathlons to guide me. Their advice and support has been incredible and I have learned a ton from them. So don’t be afraid to ask the questions. No one expects you to know everything if you’re new.
Most importantly, have fun. I’m enjoying this whole triathlon experiment, but running will always be my first love. I’ve found that time away from running has been awesome because it’s preventing burnout and fueling my fire to get back dedicated running training when tri season is over.
If you’re curious to learn more, you can follow along on my tri-training (mis)adventures over on my blog, Jess Runs. If you’re interested in training for a tri, sign up for the FitFluential triathlon group on Facebook. There’s lot of great discussion and motivation going on there!