Every day is a good day for a workout; daily exercise controls weight, prevents obesity-related illness, gives your mood and energy levels a boost, helps you get more consistent sleep, keeps you in touch with old workout buddies and introduces you to new friends. But what about doing triathlons year round? Is there a time to put away the bike, hang up the running shoes and forget about the freestyle? Not when you consider what each season offers:
Why "tri" in winter? For the sheer challenge of it, of course! The classic trio of swim, bike and run may give way to other athletic disciplines, such as cross-country skiing and snowshoeing, and your swim will likely require a wetsuit. The competitive field will be smaller, so your chances for a medal get better. You'll need extra gear, including heavier running/cycling socks, tights, gloves, face mask or balaclava, long-sleeved shirts and ear-covering head caps. Keeping your feet, hands, head and ears warm is critical to preventing frostbite to your sensitive extremities.
Why "tri" in spring? Warmer than winter, but not too uncomfortable, you'll be less likely to face overheating issues. Spring rains could be an issue on the roads, causing muddy conditions during the cycling and running portions. In addition to your regular gear, carry clean towels, shoe shampoo and bike cleaner; your gear will last longer if you remove mud and grime quickly.
Why "tri" in summer? It's the peak time for a wide selection of races in most parts of the country, and also the time you're most likely able to combine a race with a vacation if you have school-age children. The benefit is that you're together as a family, you have a cheering section, your children get inspired watching you race and they help you repack your gear for the ride home afterwards. For hot-weather competition, wear your lightest-weight trisuit, pack extra cold drinks (freeze them before you go, so they will be cold when you need them) and use a sunblock with an SPF rating between 15 and 30.
Why "tri" in fall? Cooler but not extremely cold weather makes the running and cycling portion of the race enjoyable, and there's less likelihood of heat stroke or heat exhaustion. And depending on the location, you have the added benefit of seeing spectacular autumn scenery on your route. Because some locations get icy roads before the first snowfall, you may want to consider trying out a set of winter cycling tires and wearing your trail running shoes instead of your usual flats, to ensure good grip and no slip and fall accidents on the road.
Whatever season's your strongest, Element Multisport can help you get ready for your next triathlon. From wetsuits to wheels, gloves to GPS watches, tri suits to transition bags, we can outfit you for any time of year. Come in or contact us for more information about rentals, repairs, service and our line of products.