With the Virgin Active London Triathlon recently completed there are bound to be those of us who took inspiration and are toying with the idea of taking on a triathlon, perhaps with the aim of raising money for a charity we care about. Fundraising can be a challenge, not to mention the challenge of training for the event as well, and then triathlons have the added complication of kit to think about. Luckily, Jane Blackmore, a writer, blogger and runner, has put together a guide of the basics you will need to complete your chosen event to help take the stress out of it, leaving you to the fun stuff!
Preparing for a Triathlon
Triathlons are a fantastic way to raise money for charity, and tone up your fitness. Because of the different muscles used in each sporting event, you can guarantee that if you train correctly you will be as fit as a fiddle.
There are hundreds of events across the UK, you need to choose your distance, choose your charity and then book in for the event.
What you will need
Before embarking on your charity triathlon you will need to ensure that you have the right kit. The choice on the market is overwhelming. Often people over spend when preparing to take on their first triathlon. The basics that you cannot do without include:
Swimming Goggles – An absolute must have for any athlete looking to complete a triathlon. If swimming in the pool they save your eyes from chlorine filled waters. When diving into lakes and oceans, they protect your eyes from dirt and possible infections.
Wetsuit – Like goggles, if you are open water swimming a wetsuit is a must. The UK is not known for its warmth, our rivers and lakes are freezing. A decent wetsuit will speed up your performance and protect you against the icy depths. The general rule of thumb on price is to avoid the most expensive but don’t opt for the cheapest. Middle ground is safe ground. Tri-suits are popular with serious triathletes; beginners may want to see how they get on before investing.
Bike – You can’t do a triathlon without one. For anyone new to triathlons the bike will be your most expensive purchase. Shop around, seek advice, speak to athletes who have already completed events and heed their words. Make sure the bike is also useful for day to day use so you maximise your investment.
Helmet – You wouldn’t put a child on a bike with protection. Make sure you heed your own advice. You cannot compete in a triathlon without one, it is in the rule book.
Other optional extras include a bag to wear round your waist, cream to prevent chaffing in the wetsuit, sunglasses to avoid bits of the road hitting your eyes and of course, decent trainers.
If you cover these basics, you can then put the credit card away, focus on the training and enjoy the event.
If you’re interested in taking on a triathlon for a cause you care about, check out the range of triathlon events listed on JustGiving’s website. There is something for everyone, from events for beginners to long-distance challenges. JustGiving has enabled millions of people to raise billions of pounds for thousands of charities over the last decade, and is the world’s leading platform for charity giving.