Tuesday, October 04, 2005

How About Trying a Tri?

Since I mentioned that I am taking swimming lessons I have had several people ask me if I intend on training for a triathlon. The short answer is that yes I would like to try a Tri.

Now for the long answer. The typical triathlon for beginners is the Sprint Triathlon. In Germany this consists of a 500 meter swim, a 20K bike ride and a 5K run (is that the same worldwide?). Now remember we’re not talking Ironman here, this is strictly beginner’s stuff. Here is my self-analysis:

The Swim Part

I don’t know if I can swim 500 meters, I never tri-ed this distance all at once. I can do a couple laps at the pool with my clumsy doggie-breast stroke. So this is where the swimming lesson enters the picture. My current swim course will hopefully teach me how to correctly do the breast stroke. In January I want to enroll in a freestyle (crawl) swim course. Then it’s only a matter of practicing these techniques unto I turn into aqua man, then joining a water polo team so I can get used to getting beat up in the water (or maybe going swimming in the kiddie pool?)!

The Bicycling Part

Now I could probably pedal my cheap Wal-Mart mountain bike 20K, although my butt would strongly object and the race would probably be over with before I finish. My crazy road-racing-biking-fool-type of a colleague said I should think about getting at least a good 10-speed or something that would keep the peasants from snickering. He suggested buying a used racing bike from a totally crazy biking type who needs to replace their bike every 6 months. Then I would have to put regular bike training on my training schedule so I can work some calluses on the butt.

The Running Part

No problem! I just need to practice running after swimming and bike riding.

All in all this is going to be a tri-ing experience and will take awhile! If my swimming improves dramatically there could be some movement in the Tri-direction in 2006, otherwise I will Tri in 2007.

Note (added later):

I don't have to go to far for a Tri. The next town down from us has a Tri every July with a 500 meter swim/23K bike ride/5K run. Last year there were 139 men and 39 women that finished the event.

Jack, When I decided to try a tri, I couldn't do more than a dog paddle and hadn't ridden a bike since I was 15. I don't know why I did it, but I did. You can too! I took swim lessons and bought a cheap Wal-mart bike and I didn't come in last. :-) I hope to give it a go - I think you might enjoy a new challenge!
Dammit, Jack, not you too! Everyone else is doing tri's. Ooohhh, the pressure....
Wow, dog paddle and cheap Walmart bike - I think I'm ready now ;-)
Well, as you know, I'm in! I was thinking about what you said (how it was funny that I thought of it as "easing in" to competition) and I just realized it's because I've suddenly become injury prone (extra weight is doing, I believe) and tri training if forced cross training.
I don't know why, but when I read your swim comments I kept envisioning you as a a superhero called Jac-qua Man .. :)
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