Healthy Blog

Triathlon Training Basics for New Cyclists

Monday, October 17, 2016

Preparing for a Triathlon event is a great way to learn new activities and meet new people and here’s a bit of advice I found really useful when I first started.

Safety

Never ride without wearing a good quality cycling helmet and make sure you know how to mend a flat tyre.  You should take at least two spare tubes and a pump, CO or air cartridge with you and a multi-function bike tool that fits into a frame bag behind the saddle. 

You may not be very mechanically-minded, but you’ll need this tool if someone offers to help you.  I always take a credit card, my mobile phone and some cash with me, just in case of emergency and plenty of water and snacks are important, too.

Comfort

After safety, this is the most important factor you need to think about.  Make sure you use a bike that fits your size and try as many different saddles as necessary, until you find one that fits your individual shape.  And we should all raise a glass to the guy who invented super-comfy padded cycling shorts!

Traffic rules

Check out your local traffic rules for cyclists and follow them, because they’re designed to keep everyone safe on the road.  Don’t weave in and out between parked cars, because it means drivers can’t see you and may appear on your tail too suddenly to stop.

Training

Start off on roads with less traffic until you get your confidence and if necessary, get a bike rack for your car and drive to a road that’s right away from the city while you get to grips with controlling your bike.

Join a group

There are many cycling clubs and groups around the country and you can ask about these at a local bike store or library.  They usually welcome new members and have organized rides for all levels of cycling proficiency most weekends - from total beginners upwards. 

This is an excellent way to train, socialise and learn from more advanced cyclers.  And it means you’ll never find yourself alone in the middle of nowhere with a flat tyre!

And my final tip is that you start your Triathlon training well before the event, so you can start off easy and build up your fitness level gradually with regular, sensible training sessions.  Cycling’s a great way to exercise your body - so have fun!