Halfway through your first Triathlon Training

By Tripp Norton, USAT Certified Coach, Owner of Endure 3 Sports,

Triathlon NutritionOk, you did it. A few months ago you signed up for your first triathlon as part of a dare, New Years resolution, mid-life crisis, etc. Whatever the reason…you did it. This is the first step in achieving what most of the population will never be able to do…SWIM, BIKE, RUN….back to back to back. As a new triathlete you may believe it is just about the swim, bike, and run. Well, oddly as it may sound the sport of triathlon encompasses much more, which is probably why most people can never do just one triathlon. As a coach, there are a two items I like to touch on at the midway point of a training program with my athletes. The first item is, “where are they Mentally and how do I prepare them (mentally) for their upcoming race(s)?” The second item focuses on injury prevention and safety.

Mentally Speaking
You are probably at the midway point of your training and the nervousness is mounting, as you get closer to that date with destiny. The reality is…you are going to do great. The trick is getting your mind to believe that you are going to do great. One of the greatest limiters that prevent athletes from achieving their goals is not their athletic ability, but their mind. Yep, self-doubt, embarrassment, and fear of failing all contribute to poor athletic performance. In many cases someone feels more pain than they thought they should, so they stop during a race. One of the hardest things to train is the mind and for my athletes this is one of the most important aspects to train. With respect to your mind in training and in racing, I tell my athletes that they are probably going to feel pains that they never knew possible. And that terrible feeling will probably come when you take that first step off the bike or with one mile left in the run. I tell them this because I want them to be prepared for it when it does come. I then tell them this….”knowing that you are in pain…do not focus on the pain but rather, what it will feel like to cross the finish line with family and friends on onlookers cheering you on.” Imagine this…and I promise this image will get you through those tough times in your race. For more mental tips please go to

Injury Prevention
Most of us have experienced one or more injuries in our live. While most of these setbacks sideline us for a few days or weeks, others can last a lifetime. Over the past year I have been battling everything from a knee injury to plantar fasciitis. Injury prevention is the key to long-term success and overall goal achievement. Take me for example…I am no faster today than I was a year ago when all my injuries started occurring. Do not neglect your body and follow some of these in the list below.

  1. Always warm up before every training session.
  2. Get a good bike fit from a professional. Most qualified bike shops will do this for a fee of less than $150. Bike fit is important to maximize your strength and to decrease the chance of injury.
  3. Change Running Shoes often – This is not the area to be trying to cut costs. Err on the side of safety and replace shoes instead of trying to squeeze extra miles out of them.
  4. Wear running shoes just for running
  5. Keep at least two pairs of shoes in the rotation, especially if you are running several days in a row.
  6. Determine what type of runner you are: neutral, pronator or supinator and find shoes that accommodate your type of running. A podiatrist at a good sports medicine clinic is an excellent resource.
  7. Get a message
  8. Join a masters swimming group Spend time alone in the pool. To better focus on technique, it is imperative to spend time at the pool without the pace clock and the competition of other swimmers. Pick a day, swim easy, and think about your stroke.
  9. Strength Train – by strength training I do not mean power lifting. You do not need anything more than your own body weight. Try to do things that are multi-joint multi-muscle exercises. Nothing isolated like leg curls or leg extensions. For more strength exercises please email me

There will be days that you do not want to train…remember that the first two minutes are the toughest. If you have any more questions or would like to check out other topics from my library please link over to my coach’s corner Recommended Resources:


Triathlon Swim : – Get the low-down on gear and read tips for training and events.

Triathlon Bike: – Learn how to structure bike workouts, find safety tips and read recommendations on great bike gear.

Triathlon Run : – Get the ultimate skinny on running sneakers, running gear, safety tips and much more.

“Triathlete Profile
Read interviews of people like YOU who give advice on training, balance and much more.

There are Newbies Starting Triathlons Every Day. Today Just Happens to be YOUR Day!