to tri or not to tri

I remember walking in a grocery store parking lot with three of my college roommates. Two are swimmers. I was asking them if they would continue swimming after college, which they replied “Probably, somehow.” Then they asked me if I would continue running: “Will you do a marathon?”  “Probably not. I want to do a triathlon first.”

I totally forgot about that.

At the time, I never thought I’d have it in me to run 26.2 miles. But triathlons always seemed more interesting, more….fun. And for some reason, more feasible.

And since it’s tri season, I am itching to give it a go. However, after giving it some thought (with a dash of cynicism), I’ve run into some few problems:

  • I can barely swim. Not totally sure if this will be a problem, but if I had to guess…I’d say YES. I just kinda suck at swimming. I can dominate the doggy paddle, but that’s the extent of it. And I hear when you’re swimming, you usually just get kicked in the face. (I don’t need any extra disadvantages.) Oh, and if it’s an ocean tri, it doesn’t help that I hate waves. (I don’t like large bodies of water crashing on me, weird I know.) 
  • I don’t own a bike. I lost my bicycle. It wasn’t stolen, I just…lost it. It was a fixed gear anyway, but my bikin’ muscles have not been properly worked in awhile. This became evident when I went to my first spin class and wanted to die from an asthma attack and sever lactic acid overload in my hamstrings. Why do people actually enjoy spinning? 
  • I like running fresh. The reason I enjoy running is, oh I dunno, I feel great while doing it. For some reason, I think by the time I hit the running part, my legs will be all JELL-O and this will make me angry and frustrated. Can I do the run first?
  • I’d have to buy a lot of stuff. Triathlons are expensive. It’s like getting equipped for three sports! I’d probably need a swimsuit/wetsuit, flippers (JK), goggles, cycling shoes, helmet, BIKE, and lots of Gu. And then my wallet will probably yell at me. 
All that being said, I still really want to do one. REALLY BAD. I just need some help. And fast. 

About Laura

marketing director at Possible. formerly at Greatist. Still running, finding zen, and searching for the perfect bloody mary.

Posted on June 14, 2012, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.

  1. I’m so interested/intrigued by triathlons. It’s on my list of things to do, one day, but I’m a lot like you. I would need some adult swim lessons. I don’t want to invest in an expensive bike and special cycling shoes. I’m sort of afraid of swimming in open water (and getting kicked in the face terrifies me).

    I think the training and including brick workouts in the training will help get your body accustomed to going from sport to sport to sport, but it can’t be easy!

    So, yeah. It’s still on the list, but it will take me a long time to work up the gumption to do one.

    • Intrigued by triathlons is a good way to put it! Have no idea what the experience would be like really, which is why I want to try it!

      • Not 20 minutes after I left that comment, I got suckered into doing a triathlon with one of my good friends. It must have been something in the air to get me all tri fired up!

        So, yeah. I need to learn how to swim. Quickly.

  2. YESSSSSS. OKay so here is the deal. If you find a Triathlon you want to do (CT or LI) then I can loan you a bike, goggles, helmet, and wetsuit (I have two, one I got for free)….As for swimming you are on your own for practicing, but I have found that at smaller triathlons there are a lot of not very strong swimmers…so you will be in good company!

    My first triathlon I road a mountain bike with running shoes…so you really don’t need bike shoes or a fancy bike. AND I didn’t even wear a wetsuit my first 4 Triathlons…so you don’t even need one of those.


  3. You are very welcome to borrow my bike anytime – I use it like once a year and the rest of the time it just sits in my storage room.

    Also, if Old Navy will do, you can get a free one piece this weekend 🙂

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