Triathlon Transition Tips
You’ve been training for a triathlon and you are happy your progress with swimming, cycling and running however have you overlooked a critical factor in triathlon race success?
Many triathletes forget that one of the most important areas where you can gain ‘free’ time is the transition. This article offers you five tips to ensure you have a speedy transition.
1 – Preparation is key- ensure that you have a set layout for all your gear, many triathletes use a plastic tub to keep all their gear in, others prefer to lay out their gear on a towel. Remember you have a limited amount of room so organize yourself in a tidy fashion, if you spread your gear out over more than one space don’t be surprised if the triathlete next to you has moved your stuff, adding to confusion when you return to the transition point. Remember your heart-rate will be elevated so it is much easier to become confused in this state.
2 – Most keen triathletes will wear a tri suit when competing in triathlons. Not only are tri-suits comfortable, but they allow you to transition faster also as you don’t have to change gear when moving from one discipline to the next. If you’re taking part in a shorter triathlon which might involve a pool swim then you can swim in your tri-suit, and the advantage is you can also cycle and run in it. Many triathletes who don’t like to wear a tri-suit for fashion reasons loose valuable time and ultimately race places, by having to change clothes.
3 – Remember where your transition place is. You need to make a mental note where your transition space is and also work out where the entry and exit points are. You will be surprised how many people forget where their transition space is and then run around in a panic. Whilst it is mildly amusing for spectators it isn’t funny for the person racing who is seeing their times go down the pan. A secondary tip here is not to panic, as you will only lose more time. Try to remain calm in transition as panicking will only increase your heart rate slowing you down.
4 – Practice transition at home. This might seem like a really silly thing to do, but practicing your transition routine will help you shave seconds off the time you spend in T1 and T2. Whilst you may feel this is not necessary, go to a triathlon and watch a race and hang around the transition area and see how triathletes transition who are both great at it and those who make a mess of it. Clearly, racing experience has helped some, whilst other dedicated triathletes have actually practiced at home to ensure that they are as fast as possible.
5 – Use elastic laces such as those made by Lock Laces as these allow you to put your running shoes on very quickly indeed. Don’t mess around tying laces in a hurry, instead use elastic laces and you’ll find you will be able to get your shoes on in double-quick time. Also- talcum powder can help you get your cycle and running shoes on faster. Many triathletes also forgo socks as it can take a while to get them on. If you’re going to do this remember to try this in practice. Feet can blister if you are not used to running without socks. Remember everything you do typically is a compromise for something else.
We hope these triathlon training tips help you shave valuable time off your triathlon transitions. Good luck racing!