Time Goals for First Tri?

author : acbadger
comments : 0

Should I have time goals for the first sprint? Should I just finish the race at a reasonable pace? I'm not sure how to approach this.

Question:

Just getting back into swimming and I got to 1000m on my second work out (old swim teamer). The funny thing is should I have time goals for the first sprint? Should I just finish the race at a reasonable pace? I'm not sure how to approach this. My feelings are that my training is going well and that I should get some set times to meet. I would appreciate any help for this vague question. Thanks.

Answer:

That is OUTSTANDING that you already have a swimming background. Swimming is the most technical of the 3 disciplines and the event that most first-time triathletes ‘stress out’ about. You are already a bit ahead of the game in that aspect.

That being said, I think you need to take your training one-step-at-a-time. I would make this recommendation to ANYONE who is about to embark on their first triathlon experience. Your first triathlon experience should be all about following a structured training plan, getting through the training and just finishing the race. The first race, of any kind for that matter, should be all about crossing the finish line. Once you have conquered that milestone…you now have a baseline. This baseline can be one that you can work from. What was your time for your swim, what was your time on the bike, what was your time for the run?? Now, choose a discipline each race to improve upon. You will slowly but surely see your times, form, etc. improve on each race.

I am not one to set times for people…and I don’t think people who are just beginning to compete in triathlons (or any sport for that matter) should set time limitations…however, you can always set goals for yourself by trying to beat your last overall race time, your last sprint distance swim, your fastest bike time on a sprint course, or set your fastest 5K. Personally, I would try to hit one discipline at a time. This cuts down on the stress of improving EVERY discipline EVERY time out!! It shakes up your training and helps keep you interested and focused!!

Stick with your strong swimming, however, and on another note…since swimming is the sport where you feel the most comfortable…remember, you should try to put a little more focus on your ‘weaker’ sport. Maybe that is running, maybe that is biking…but lets put the idea of time on the back burner until you have completed a training program and your first triathlon!

 

Good luck! PLEASE let us know how it goes. We LOVE to hear from our “beginners.”

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date: January 30, 2006

acbadger

Four Sprint Triathlons and 2 Olympic Distance Triathlons. Several marathons and Boston qualified. Because of my new found love of these sports, I got my Personal Training Certification and USAT Level I Coaching Certification so I could help others attain their goals!

avataracbadger

Four Sprint Triathlons and 2 Olympic Distance Triathlons. Several marathons and Boston qualified. Because of my new found love of these sports, I got my Personal Training Certification and USAT Level I Coaching Certification so I could help others attain their goals!

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