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Top Triathlon Hacks To Make You Faster In Your Next Race

Top Triathlon Hacks To Make You Faster In Your Next Race


– We all want to go faster. I mean, triathlon is a race, after all. I’m sure you spend many hours training, trying to beat your rivals
or lower your personal best. Admittedly, there is no
avoiding the hard work that you’ve gotta do in
the pool, on your bike, and on the run, but there are several ways that are much easier, that can help you go a lot faster on race day. So we’ve chosen a few
of our favourite tips, to help your race day
experience become smoother and most importantly, faster. Obviously you’re preparing for your race from the first day you
start your training, but we’re gonna be focusing
on specific race day prep. So let’s begin with the swim. Now there’s a lot of ways you
can save valuable seconds. To start with, make sure you’ve
got a good fitting wetsuit, and once you’re happy
with what you’ve got, if you grease your wrists and
your ankles with something like baby oil or Body
Glide, then that will make a massive difference,
and also when it comes to the actual transition,
make sure you get your wetsuit down to your waist as quickly as possible as the wetter you are, the easier it is to slide off. Okay, onto tactics, so if you
can get some inside knowledge to find out the best place
to swim with the current and away from any of the chop, and then try and find
a landmark that’s gonna be large enough for you to see to help you spot as well
as using the marker buoys. And finally, try and find
some swimmers that you know are gonna be similar paced to you, or maybe a little bit quicker, so you can really get the
benefit from drafting. (energetic music) So you’ve got your wetsuit
off in record time. Well now you can dramatically
improve the speed of your transition by
changing your layout. For example, start with
having a bright towel so you can easily find your kit when you run into transition. If you’re not yet at the
stage of leaving your shoes on your bike, then just make
sure that they’re laid out in transition, facing away from you so that when you come in you’re gonna have to get your feet in more easily. If you’re not gonna be wearing socks, then put in a bit of talcum powder, and a bit of lubrication like some Vaseline or petroleum
spirit around the heel. If you are wearing socks,
then make sure you leave the corresponding sock on
the corresponding shoe. Maybe even think of popping them inside and rolling down the tops so they’re that much easier to put on. Well make sure the rest of your transition is laid out purely for speed. So if you’re wearing sunglasses, pop them in your helmet ready,
and then leave your helmet upside-down, facing towards
you with the straps open so you can grab it and
put it on extra quickly. If you’re using an aero helmet, and you can’t put your
glasses on top of it, then have them open inside, so you can really quickly pop them on. Same goes for race belt,
if you need a race belt for the bike, have it laid down, so that it’s quick to pick
up the clasp and pop it on. Finally, leave your bike
in the correct gear, because there’s nothing worse than being in too high a gear when you’ve got an uphill slope out of T1. Not only is it gonna be very slow, it could be slightly
embarrassing as you’re struggling and you’re gonna lose valuable seconds. While there’s a lot that
you can do to your bike to make you go faster, we have covered that in a lot of detail in another video. But look at your position,
if you’re riding a road bike, then you could think about
adding on some aero bars. For your spares for
example, you could put them underneath your saddle
and tape them up there. If you’ve got a lot of loose cables, then tape them up, just
make sure you’ve still got enough movement for your bike. Well think about moving your hydration. There are several options of
where to carry it on your bike. It’s that balance between
being more aerodynamic but still having it easily accessible so that you can drink regularly. The same goes for your nutrition. So if you’re using bars for example, make sure they’re open so
they’re easy to access. If you’re using gels, you could even think about taping them onto your top tube, so they’re really easy to get to. If you wanna use the course nutrition, make sure you’ve checked out
what they have available, and that you’ve tasted it before,
so you know you’ll like it and if you do, you can
actually save a little bit of weight and you won’t
have to carry quite as much on your bike, and
you can pick things up as you go on the course. Then there are things that
are more easily overlooked such as a clean bike, and
yes I probably do need to address mine, but having a clean bike that is well lubed will be more efficient, and then obviously faster. If you can afford some
new tyres for your race, that will make a difference. You’re less likely to have a puncture, and they will be faster. Talking of tyres, check
out the road surface before hand so you can work out what the optimum tyre pressure
is that you want to run. Right, this may sound obvious,
but know where you’re going. If you’ve got the chance, drive
the course the day before. You can note any sharp
bends, ascends, descends and maybe even get out of the car and notice the wind direction. If you can, find someone
who’s raced it before ’cause they might well be in
to give you some good tips. (energetic music) We’re going by pretty much the same rules as we did for T1, it’s
all about the layout for the quickest transition possible. So, have your shoes facing away from you. If you’re not wearing
socks, make sure you put some talcum powder inside, and
something to lube the heel. You can use elastic laces to make it even quicker to get your shoes on. Then everything else
that you’re gonna need, like a visor or gels, leave it in a pile so you can grab it all together, and you can be putting it on whilst you’re already out on the run. Once you’re out onto
the run, there shouldn’t be too much that you’ve
got to think about. If it’s a short run or it’s short laps, then try and walk it or
maybe even jog it beforehand, so you’ve got that mental advantage of knowing how to pace it. If you are doing a longer run, or you’re someone that needs to have the odd convenience
break on the run, it might be worth considering
wearing a two piece, cause that will actually save you a lot of time in the long run. On that note, keep an eye out so you know where the loos are, so you’re
not gonna have to panic and try and find a bush. Now there are a lot of
little physical things that you can do to help you prepare, but don’t underestimate the importance of being mentally prepared. So, swim, drive, or walk through as much of the course as you can,
and then visualise it. When it comes to transition,
walk through T1 and T2 several times until
you’re absolutely certain you know where you’re
going, ’cause it’s amazing how a little bit of adrenalin on race day, and suddenly all the aisles of
bikes look exactly the same. Final point, visualise a list in your head for T1 and T2, and then
towards the end of the swim you can start going through
the motions in your head of what you’re gonna do in T1, and towards the end of the bike,
you can work it out for T2. And finally, a tri suit or a
triathlon specific two piece will save you a lot of time
from changing in transitions. Just make sure that if
you’re using any new kit, and you’ve worn it at
least once before race day. And make sure to pack a
spare pair of trainers, as you don’t want to be
having to warm up barefoot once you put your
trainers into transition. Talking of warm up, if you
can’t get into the water or you don’t want to before your swim, then you can do a job and
some ability exercises to get your heart rate up and
get you into the race zone. Follow these tips and
save valuable seconds, even minutes, in your next triathlon race. Do let us know if there’s any hacks that you’ve got of your own
that we haven’t included today. If you haven’t yet done so
and you wanna catch more videos from GTN, just hit
the globe to subscribe. And if you wanna see the video we made on our top 10 triathlon hacks,
that video is just here. If you want to know how to
transform your road bike into a triathlon bike, we
made a video just here.

37 comments on “Top Triathlon Hacks To Make You Faster In Your Next Race

  1. Shouldn't the helmet be attached to the bike in T1? Thought I read that somewhere… Otherwise great tips, as always.

  2. Have you got any race day hacks to add to our collection? Let us know in the comments!

  3. Yeah… I tried putting my sunglasses on the helmet, but sometimes when I fliped it, my glasses would fall, making me lose time. Since, instead what I do is tape my glasses next to my gels, so I don't worry about them untill I'm already on the bike.

  4. My tips are closely linked to knowing the transition areas: know where the mount/dismount lines are after T1/before T2. If you keep the cycling shoes on your bike in T1, make sure you check out the surface to the mount line before the race, easy to get a cut on the soles of your feet if you're not careful on rough surfaces, try doing a full distance after that…

  5. Squirt bottle of clean water and a small cloth next to your tmat to wash your feet clean of scum and sand from your swim. Nothing worse than a sandy foot in a cycling shoe.

  6. These are great and helpful. I’ve got my first 70.3 this week and I’m in a totally different space for this event than past ones (coming off an injury).

  7. If allowed use something to identify your transition area. I use a 5 gallon bucket, and toss the items I’m done with in it to contain them. And my pro tip- get their early to get a good bike spot on the end of a rack. Like if the race is at 8 get there at 6:50.

  8. On the day of the race, double-check the number of loops and where you need to turn back (especially if there are multiple distances in the same race) to avoid being disqualified for a too short leg, or adding unnecessary distance to your race (I doubled my run distance in error on my previous race). The organizers won’t necessarily know your race’s permutation if there’re multiple at the same time.

  9. For all that is holy stop taping gels to the top tube. It ruins any gains from aero/TT frame you bought.

  10. Nice video thanks, my first one of the season yesterday and I lost my place in T2. Think I might get a fluorescent towel! As a suggestion for a video, howabout effort levels during racing. Especially bike and run. Obviously sprint will be different to long distance…

  11. I use a plastic bag to help get my wetsuit on. I place it on my feet as I am stepping into the wetsuit. It is way easier than rolling around on the ground and struggling to get your legs in.

  12. This was interesting, even though I've never run a triathlon. Watching it was good entertainment. Of course I like watching triathlons on YouTube!

  13. I know you are sponsored by 'training peaks' But can you tell what difference with 'stravistix for strava' please?

  14. Great tips, Heather! I learned some of these from Tri friends in years past, so it helped me in my very first 70.3 in Florida last month. Now if I can get better & faster in the swim… 😉

  15. So much talk about going to the loo, what about a video about peeing on the bike? By far the fastest 😀

  16. can't wait to do my first tri in a month. signed up for a half-ironman, as there's no olympic ones nearby until the end of summer. really pumped 😀

  17. All good advice. Put your bike shoes on the bike and your helmet on the bars, to save bending down in transition which can otherwise make you dizzy. If you do suffer from swim dizziness, it’s usually caused by cold water. Dizziness can be reduced by wearing swim ear plugs.

  18. Click your open shoes into pedals, tie them with some thin elastic tightly to the frame so the elastic will tear when pedalling.

  19. I'm sure it depends on the tire, but I find that I am significantly faster on a set of worn in tires than I am on brand new tires.

  20. Your videos are wonderful, are helping me feel a lot more confident with my first triathlon ever tomorrow.😁

  21. She's HAWT! seriously though, your vids are awesome, did my 1st indoor tri a month ago, and all the pointers helped out tremendously with the training. 5 weeks till me next tri ( outdoors) – can't wait!

  22. Tried some of these hacks on my most recent olympic-distance tri and worked like a champ. I especially liked the tips about rolling the socks and taping the gels to the bike–brilliant!

  23. Do you have to have a pair of cycling shoes and a pair of running shoes? Or can I put on running shoes at T1 and not worry about changing shoes at T2?

  24. Thanks GTN. Watched this before my triathlon again today and helped me to remember how to organize everything for transitions.

  25. I would appreciate your thoughts on whether a Rak-it would help my transition times, it seems I can use my normal saddle I train with and to rack it easily – I found it at @t

  26. I'd say it's kinda implied in "scope out the course" and "know the transition areas" but I'll say it more clearly. Know exactly where the swim exit, bike mount, bike dismount, and run out are. My first triathlon I'd taken the time the day before to do this, and in the morning, with 500+ people running around with 6 different distances and start times, the people who hasn't were biking out the run or going down the wrong turn to end the bike and ending up in the carpark, or just riding into transition and getting disqualified.
    Also, keep your transition area as neat and minimal as possible. REALLY all you need is your bike, helmet, sunglasses, bike/run shoes, race belt, and the energy and bottles on your bike. A lot of newbie transition areas are somehow manage to be crammed with stuff and super messy, and the messy transition areas lead to them getting frazzled.

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