Hit the ground running
Before you take off out the front door, take a look around online for a beginner’s program and advice on how to get started.
Women’s triathlon website Witsup is a great place to start. The site has released a series of ‘Tri Newbies’ videos, which feature Australian triathlete Emma Jackson dishing out tips for beginners. They cover a range of topics not usually outlined in beginner articles such as:
How to get comfortable with riding on the road
Running straight after a bike ride (jelly legs)
Not freaking out in the open water
Get into gear
Make sure you get gear that’s right for you. Again, this is where research comes into it. Read reviews, asks around, and try the equipment out. Your gear should be comfy, and in your price range. As cool as it might look, there’s probably no need to get a $2000 bike when you’re not riding more than 20ks, or the latest wetsuit if you’re just cutting laps of the local YMCA.
Gear includes safety equipment too - consider investing in high vis clothing, and definitely install a blinking light to the front and back of your bike.
Boring but important
Just like how your mum stopped you from getting back into the pool too soon after lunch, there are a few things you need to know before you get your tri on.
Each state in Australia has different cycling laws. For example, in NSW, QLD and SA, cars must stay at least 1m away from riders. In Victoria, no rule exists. Look up the rules in your state before you hit the road.
All this sound a bit overwhelming? Look up your local triathlon club, or even swimming, running, and riding groups. They’ll be more than happy to help you find your way!
Tri and enjoy it
There are definitely times when training’s not going to be easy. Hey, if it were easy, everyone would do it. You’ll probably launch your phone across the room when it tells you it’s time to get up for your Saturday morning ride at least once. But it’s the moments where you struggle that will make finishing your first tri all the more sweet.