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Triathlon Swim / Bike / Run your thing? Drop in our new triathlon forum for the latest in training & gear. From beginner to expert, and sprint to ironman.

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Old 02-25-08, 08:02 AM   #1
cycledorchy
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help! jeez, how do you even get started?

Mrs. cycledorchy and I intend to participate in the September 2008 Cinco Ranch sprint triathlon. She's recently finished the Houston Marathon and I've been riding my bike religiously for some time too. So, she's a strong runner and I have some cycling experience, though, we're both unsure of how to develop our swimming skills for this sort of thing. We're buying matching Trek 1.2's in a couple days and we will be riding together when possible, and I need to get running both outside and on the treadmill. But how do you prepare for something like this? Anyone else in the Katy, TX area or anyone at all who can give advice on diet, scheduling, etc...

We are going to be buying books but still...
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Old 02-25-08, 08:32 AM   #2
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Seems to me your on the right track

I would say simply continue what it is your doing. Understand that doing all 3 sports ina day will beinitially difficult and confusing. As long as you have developed a clear understanding for what your areas of strength are and address the weak areas you will be fine. I would suggest atttending a local race or two to geta feel for the day. Time to be there, confusion of th etransition areas. The first one will be ahuge learning experience..Run, Ride swim and have fun....It gets easier. I am now into my 20th yr....
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Old 02-25-08, 09:05 AM   #3
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If you do nothing else, make sure you practice getting off a bike and then running. It's freaky weird until your legs get used to it. Your thighs won't cooperate at first - like wearing cement shoes. Also known as a Brick workout.

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Old 02-25-08, 12:46 PM   #4
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Just get to a swimming pool on a regular basis and work on getting comfortable in the water. Progressively swim more laps until you've reached your target distance.

As i like to say, "You can slow down if you get tired on the bike/run, but there's a risk of drowning if you tire in the water..."
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Old 02-25-08, 02:06 PM   #5
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Being a sprint, the swimming should not be much of a problem. (Bear in mind, I am a former swimmer)
Just get to where you are comfortable in the water. You won't win on the swim, but you sure can lose on it.
If she runs marathons, you have all the nutritional info you need.
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Old 02-25-08, 02:42 PM   #6
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If I were you guys, I would swim, bike and run a lot : )


My first tri, I did 2 swims a week, 2 runs a week, and 2 bike rides a week. Since each individual leg is pretty short, I slowy built up my workouts to twice the distance. All in all, its not that different than what I am doing for a half ironman, except I am doing three workouts a week per sport and they are longer.
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Old 02-25-08, 02:44 PM   #7
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Being a sprint, the swimming should not be much of a problem. (Bear in mind, I am a former swimmer)
I am always amazed at the lack of understanding on many Swimmer's part of how hard the swim is for many.
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Old 02-25-08, 04:44 PM   #8
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I am always amazed at the lack of understanding on many Swimmer's part of how hard the swim is for many.
iknowhatchamean....

It is difficult to comprehend. Then I cringe at running more than 5k.
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Old 02-25-08, 05:02 PM   #9
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Are you doing it to place well or just to do it?

If you're just doing it for the enjoyment of the experience, I'm sure you could complete it today. Running a marathon is vastly more of a challenge than a sprint triathlon, assuming you just know how to swim and know how to ride a bike. I wouldn't stress so much.

If you're at it to win, well that's another story.
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Old 02-25-08, 05:13 PM   #10
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Are you doing it to place well or just to do it?

If you're just doing it for the enjoyment of the experience, I'm sure you could complete it today. Running a marathon is vastly more of a challenge than a sprint triathlon, assuming you just know how to swim and know how to ride a bike. I wouldn't stress so much.

If you're at it to win, well that's another story.
Agreed. Get some pool time, some run time, and keep riding the bike. A simple plan is to have a six day week: swim, bike, run, swim, bike, run, rest. Repeat.

After a month or two of this, come back and ask about Bricks (buwaahhhaahhaa!)
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Old 02-25-08, 11:29 PM   #11
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help! jeez, how do you even get started?

...buy a cervelo??
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Old 02-26-08, 09:30 AM   #12
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Mrs. cycledorchy and I intend to participate in the September 2008 Cinco Ranch sprint triathlon. She's recently finished the Houston Marathon and I've been riding my bike religiously for some time too. So, she's a strong runner and I have some cycling experience, though, we're both unsure of how to develop our swimming skills for this sort of thing. We're buying matching Trek 1.2's in a couple days and we will be riding together when possible, and I need to get running both outside and on the treadmill. But how do you prepare for something like this? Anyone else in the Katy, TX area or anyone at all who can give advice on diet, scheduling, etc...

We are going to be buying books but still...
congrats on deciding to make the leap. first off, you have plenty of time in fact, maybe too much. i only say that because you dont want to train too hard up front and burn out before september. it is great that you have a foundation and perhaps you start now with teh swimming if that is where your lack of condience is. like the other activities, the only way to train to swim is to swim. get in a pool or a lake depending on temp and get comfortable in the water. you will need to build up your ability to handle distance. when i started swimming for my first tri, i was gassed by the end of a lap or two.

search the internet for suggested training programs. that will let you regiment your training over 6, 8, 10, etc. weeks. typically most programs will have you doing each activitity 2-3 times per week and as you get closer to the race, practicing blocks of swim/bike, swim/run, bike/run to learn to understand teh rigors involved in doing mutliple cardio events in sequence and to get a feel for transitioning from one to the other.
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Old 03-06-08, 05:49 PM   #13
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This may seem like a little thing, but it made me much more comfortable in the water.

When I was a teenager I had been swimming for years, but still didn't like getting my face wet. I had made it all the way in classes to the WSI (Water Safety Instructor) class. This is what you need to pass to be a full lifeguard.

Our instructor was famous for being tough. Everyone who knew of her respected her.

Anyway, I don't remember the point she was talking about, but I remember her putting her face in the water to demonstrate, and then lifting it to further explain something. Each time she would just keep talking as water rolled down her face. It made me really uncomfortable to watch her face get just dry enough so she wouldn't have chlorine in her eyes, only to see her put it back in the water. It's almost as if she was doing it on purpose.

I came to realize, THAT was really her point! It's just water! It rolls right off your face! When you need to breath, you get to turn your head, so don't worry about it.

Of course, now I use goggles to swim laps with, but ever since then, I've been very comfortable in the water. I taught my son this the same way she taught me.

I took that class over 30 years ago. It amazes me how clearly I remember something like that. She was a great teacher.

Thirty years later and NOW I decide to take up triathlons! I don't have the time to make it to a Masters class, and don't care to spend the money on a coach. My stroke has gotten a lot better just by swimming an hour at a time, three days a week.

Out of 12 students she only passed two of us. She told us the only reason we were passing was that the county needed two more lifeguards! (I told you she was tough).
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