Do you remember what it feels like to set off on a long holiday without the slightest idea what to pack? Well, remember that feeling because you might feel the same when as you get your bag ready for your first triathlon race.
You will be racing in three different disciples and you need to remember what to take with you for all three of them, without forgetting anything because that could jeopardise your performance or, in certain cases, even prevent you from taking part!
Preparing a checklist might well be useful, but only experience can teach you certain things, but we will be revealing these tips right here!
It is all about … your tyres!
In some competitions, particularly on the Ironman circuit, you need to leave your bike in the transition zone the day before the race. However fond of your two-wheeled friend you might be, you cannot spend the night before the race with it, but do not worry: the transition zone is guarded all the time and nobody will be able to steal your beloved bike!
But do not forget to check your tyre pressure the day before the race, because the cold at night or even the heat can affect it.
Vaseline or moisturising cream?
If you particularly enjoy swimming in open water you will know exactly why you need these products, but when you race for the first time you must remember to protect those places that are likely to rub during the swim, such as the area round your neck, under your arms and also around your forearms and knees: it will also help you get your swimsuit off more quickly in the transition zone and avoid any annoying irritations.
Look after your swim cap
A shiver of joy will run through every molecule of your body when you finish the swim! It is time to run towards T1, the transition zone, where you will get on your bike. But do not get carried away, remember not to pull off your swim cap and throw it on the ground. On the contrary, it must be carefully placed in your position in the transitions zone.
Race number belt
Generally speaking, you will be given an elastic band in your race pack for attaching your number, but proper triathletes prefer to have their own race number belt. Leave this accessory in the transition zone on the handlebars of your bike and wear it at the back during the bike leg. Do not forget to twist it around to the front at the end of the race: your number should be clearly visible when you cross the finish line, otherwise you will be penalised!
Forget about socks when racing over the sprint and Olympic distances, but take them with you for half and full Ironman events! Running a half marathon or a marathon without protecting your feet properly will result in rub marks or annoying blisters.
Have you got all that? Just remember these little tips and don’t tell them to any (and I mean any) of your fellow competitors!