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2014-05-08 12:08 PM

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Subject: Aiming for my first triathlon
I'm not sure what to write here for my "introduction". I'm in training for my first triathlon and hope to compete in an event in early August. After my first swim, I had serious reservations given how poorly I performed. But some good research into technique and reading many articles searching for advice, I feel pretty comfortable in the water. Our swim event is 600 yards and I think a reasonable target based on my current performance is 15:00 or less. Now my attention (and concern) has shifted to the bike.

While I have no doubt that I can cover the 14 miles required for the bike, I am worried about what condition my legs will be in once I get off the bike and still have to run 3.1 miles! Due to many constraints of every day life, I have somewhat limited time available to train. My thinking was to simply combine bike and run workouts and slowly increase the distances of each discipline. Say, for example, start with an 8 mile bike followed by a 1 mile run. Then, the next time I combine the workouts I would aim for a 9 mile bike and a 1.5 mile run. Not every workout would be a combo work out, but I feel I need to mix them in with concentrated workouts that focus on a single discipline.

I'm wondering how other people train and if they use a similar approach. I don't want to have to crawl the last mile of the run on my hands and knees because I haven't prepared properly. I'm open to listening to what others have to say!

Randy


2014-05-12 3:37 PM
in reply to: rjchilds8

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Subject: RE: Aiming for my first triathlon

If you are building run volume, I wouldn't do that many bricks, if at all, until a month before race day where you can then do as you plan.  If you can get in 1 bike, possibly 2 per week you should be fine for a sprint.  Biking was my limiter too for my first triathlon.  I was able to get in a solid 1-2 bikes per week and I was fine.  You definitely want to make sure you are able to fully train for the run - 2-3x per week.  If you hit those, your first triathlon will be fine.

Welcome and good luck!

2014-05-16 7:14 AM
in reply to: Ron

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Subject: RE: Aiming for my first triathlon
Would I be better off increasing my individual distances and concentrating less on bricks? The bike is 14 miles and I've already done 14.7. The run is 3.1 and I'm up to 5 miles already. I thought it would be good to do some bricks because I'll need to get some practice running with the higher heart rate and muscle fatigue I'll have in the event.
2014-05-16 7:51 AM
in reply to: rjchilds8

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Subject: RE: Aiming for my first triathlon

Allright, so you have the distance and are still several months away.  I would slowly increase your distance a little more while adding a brick a week.  I wouldn't do 'full' bricks (the full bike and run) but add a 10 minutes run to the end of a bike once a week.  This assumes you want to increase your distances more - you certainly don't have to your first season and I would hold the run around 5 or 6, maybe get near 20 miles for the bike...increase your swimming more if you're bored. 

2014-05-23 2:22 PM
in reply to: Ron

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Subject: RE: Aiming for my first triathlon
You must have been reading my mind (or I was reading yours). I thought I'd do one brick once a week or maybe even only once every two weeks. But I thought I would be well served by increasing my bike to 18 miles and my run up to a 10K. My swimming has been decent, but not great. Distance isn't really an issue. My event is only 600 yards (~550 m) and I've been able to swim as much as 1700m non-stop. My plan was to split my swim workouts between long distance at a slower pace and then event distance at a faster pace. I've been able to get my 550m swim down to almost 15:00. I won't be the first out of the water, but I certainly won't be the last! Some shoulder pain due to a previous injury has caused me to cut back to 1 swim a week for now. So I'm using that as an excuse to focus on the other disciplines. Unfortunately, the weather has not cooperated and I haven't been able to do much bike training.

I did my first real brick this past weekend and finished 9.4-9.5 miles in 36:03 (15.6 mph) and then ran 2.05 miles in 19:21 (6.36 mph). That felt pretty good, especially to have such a good pace on the run since I had never combined bike and run before. My home "course" is a loop and it is much flatter than what I will face in competition. But it still felt great to be able to do that much distance together.
2014-05-25 11:10 AM
in reply to: rjchilds8

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Subject: RE: Aiming for my first triathlon

Your doing a great job.  It is good to do the distances together here and there - especially for that mental confidence which can mean so much.  Keep up the good work!



2014-05-28 12:54 PM
in reply to: rjchilds8


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Subject: RE: Aiming for my first triathlon
Wow, your first triathlon is going to be such a big experience I wouldn't get too concerned about time for any of the events. Just go with attitude that completing your first tri is a major accomplishment. I was concerned that I wouldn't be able to finish the run after the bike on my first tri, but I ran with another guy and we chatted here and there throughout the run and I not only finished the run, but I set a new personal record! Having somebody to talk with (and distract you from thoughts of inadequacy or feelings of fatigue) might help you. It helped me. You can't do this in the swim and it would be very hard to do on the bike, but you can pick a running partner out of the crowd and just hang with them for the run like I did.
2014-05-30 12:37 AM
in reply to: rjchilds8

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Subject: RE: Aiming for my first triathlon

Hi Randy!

Welcome to BT and triathlon. You've gotten great advice already here.

Remember to check out our open Mentor Groups as well--they're a very approachable, inclusive way to get advice and accountability and introduce you to BT's wealth of resources in a small group format.

Link is at the top of this forum and here: 2014 BT Mentor Program

2014-05-30 7:42 AM
in reply to: shepherdsflock

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Subject: RE: Aiming for my first triathlon
Originally posted by shepherdsflock

Wow, your first triathlon is going to be such a big experience I wouldn't get too concerned about time for any of the events. Just go with attitude that completing your first tri is a major accomplishment. I was concerned that I wouldn't be able to finish the run after the bike on my first tri, but I ran with another guy and we chatted here and there throughout the run and I not only finished the run, but I set a new personal record! Having somebody to talk with (and distract you from thoughts of inadequacy or feelings of fatigue) might help you. It helped me. You can't do this in the swim and it would be very hard to do on the bike, but you can pick a running partner out of the crowd and just hang with them for the run like I did.


Thanks, shepherdsflock. I am definitely in this mostly to just complete the event and get my first triathlon under my belt. I don't have any delusions of grandeur and not thoughts about placing in my age group. I set out with an initial goal of finishing in 2 hours. I think now I've whittled that down to thinking maybe I can finish in 1h 50m. For me, it's good to set a goal time because it keeps me focused on my training and trying to push my limits and improve. If all I cared about was just crossing the finish line, I'm afraid I'd slack off on my workouts.

My brother is doing this event with me. He's not as strong at swimming as I am (which isn't saying much). So I'm not sure how much of the event we will actually be together. I thought I might at least wait for him in T1 so we could start the bike together, but he has said that he doesn't want me to wait. I do all of my training solo, so I guess it shouldn't bother me if I compete solo. Plus, I figure I'll just about be out of breath on the run, so I may not have any spare oxygen to have a conversation! LOL
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