Few days to weeks before your race, you should have everything prepared – mentally, emotionally and physically. When you’re about to race not for one sport but for three, suiting up should be tricky and comfortable.
If it’s your first time to be on a triathlon, it can really be trivial when it comes to your outfit considering the fact that you have to swim, bike and race with only few minutes transition for each activity. So, it is really important that you are able to sort out which of the gears you should be wearing during the race.
Race day should be solely focused on the game and worrying about your clothes shouldn’t be your concern anymore. It’s actually the only concrete thing you can control so you better prepare it earlier to make your race day smoother.
To help you deal with your suit for your triathlon, here’s a list of the gears you should or might want to wear during the race day:
Swimming: Basic Gears
If you’ve seen triathletes on race, you’d see how simple their suits are. As a racer, you should pick an outfit that you will wear for the three activities as well as the transitions in between without the need to change. You can add some gears for the course depending on the weather during the race day but if you want to ace the game, you should plan it perfectly so that you’ll do well during the game.
Basically, the first leg of a triathlon is the swimming part and for this you need to have a swimsuit or a wetsuit, cap and goggles.
Ideally, there are two basic styles you can choose from when picking for the right wetsuit/swimsuit. Yes, you’re reading it right – swimsuit, it is. Here’s a difference between the two:
- One-piece tri. This suit is convenient, comfortable and aerodynamic. However, it can be pricey and doesn’t have the versatility as you would with a two-piece tri.
- Two-piece tri. The most common suit during triathlons, a two-piece usually consist of triathlon swimming shorts and top. It’s more versatile as compared to one-piece suit and you can even wear it during trainings.
When choosing for the right suit for triathlon, you must keep in mind that it must be of right length for your arms, legs and the neck-to-crotch part so that it won’t look bulging. As you know, bulges give way to waters to accumulate, slowing you down. Also, it should fit quite enough for you stretch and good shoulder movement. It shouldn’t restrict you any movement.
Usually, race organizers will provide racers with swim caps but if you are to use your own you should know that there are three common materials used Latex, Silicone and Lycra spandex.
- Inexpensive but the least durable as compared to other materials. You can buy one that will match with your suit. It has the tendency to stick together and is cooler as compared to silicone. To keep it from sticking, sprinkle baby powder in it before storing it.
- Moderately priced, more durable than latex and thicker. It doesn’t stick together, less drag and warmer as compared to latex.
- This isn’t as expensive as you think it is. It’s a good pair-up with your wetsuit because of swimsuit material, durable, doesn’t stick and won’t pull your hair.
Goggles are needed if you want to swim with your eyes open. Swimming goggles with curved lenses further enhance your peripheral vision.
Goggles may be adjustable but it would be best that you choose the one that has a good fit. To check if the goggles fit well with you:
- Inspect its eyepieces if the size of its lenses fits well with your eye sockets.
- Adjust its nosepiece and if the goggles don’t have this feature, you can cut the excess.
- The strap should be just above your ears and if there are two straps available, the first one should be at the upper back of your head.
- Make sure that there are no gaps around the edges of the goggles but not too tight that it won’t be comfortable anymore.
There are goggles that come in with an anti-fog technology for clearer vision underwater. Wearing goggles may be over or under the cap.
Cycling: Basic Gears
Because you already have a suit that can go as well for cycling, the next things you have to prepare for this phase of the race are the following:
If you want to make the most out of the cycling part of the triathlon, a stiff-soled cycling pair of shoes is good way to go. When shopping for the right pair of shoes for cycling, choose the one with velcro straps closures because you have lesser time to change it out as compared to laced-shoes. Also, look for those shoes with loop at the top back of its heel so that you can pull the shoes easier.
Sunglasses are important because it will block off wind, glare and UV rays. Before buying one, make sure that you know what weather it will be on the race day. You can also buy glasses that have interchangeable lenses that will suit different weather conditions.
You can actually use any type of helmet just as long it conforms with the standards.
Running: Basic Gears
In order to make ace the last phase of the race, you must have the proper gear that includes:
When running for shorter triathlon, racing flats will do but if you’re up for longer distances, then a better pair of running shoes should be worn.
When choosing for running shoes pick the one with toggles or stretch laces to help you save time in changing from cycling to running shoes.
Regardless of the temperature, a hat or a visor may just come handy during the running phase. It protects your face from the sun and your eyes from rain. It also helps keeping sweat from dropping down to your eyes.
Fitness & Heart Rate Monitor
This gadget helps you determine your energy and might just help you to strategize for the race at any time of the game. There are 3 types of fitness/running monitors, namely the chronograph watch, heart-rate monitor and speed and distance monitor.
The ideal running watch is a combination of the speed/distance and the heart rate monitor watch. Most advanced running watches have these features.
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