Triathlon has been quite old game for most of the American or European countries as it has been going on, rooted and been take up vastly from many years in these continents by many people whether that is at professional level or at age group level. But for Asian countries it is still a new growing sport.
We all know it is one of the costly sport in the world these days due to both financial & time requirements. So obvious question comes is when you take up the sport what, when and why you should invest in.
The answer depends on your thought process-
If you ask me, I will give first priority to the time investment in the sport rather than financial investment if I am not the person who is great at finances currently. This time investment will allow any beginners to check whether they are enjoying the sport or not, then gives them the abilities to learn more about the sport, how things work in the sport and much more. Time investment for triathlons is necessary any athlete whether he/she is a beginner, intermediate or advanced be it a professional or recreational because ultimately it’s a volume and intensity game along with the supported activities for injury prevention and performance optimization. Professionals train almost 25-30 hours per week maybe more than that for some of them, but recreational can not due to other liabilities of their lifestyle but still they need to train around anywhere between 9-16 hours per week depending on the several factors.
So time investment is always the first thing to take up.
Then it comes to financial investments. Now very first thing here i like to do is categorize it into 2 different sections 1. Coaching needs 2. Ironman Training equipment needs
Out of these 2 coaching needs always be the first priorities as it will actually give you understanding about how should you train, what should go in your training, what should be your training intensities, what should be your focal points, technique work and many more stuff that is basic for starting out in any sport. Unfortunately many fall for second option directly rather than coaching. But coaching is a huge investment in moulding your body to keep it in good health and shape to optimize the performance gains. It is a very basic step in any sport. Like baby can not walk before crawling, triathlon performance can not be optimized without having basics in place and that is what coaching will give you. It will pass you on many tools , educate you , you will learn about yourself without focusing on any bullshit things that are going on around you and ignoring lots of advices around but knowing what works well for you.
Lastly there is a huge investment that comes into picture and it is never ending which is Training equipment needs. No doubt these tools optimize your performance at certain extent and it all gives you an edge of recent technology, but this can not be true unless you have good training in place. It is a basic need. What carbon wheel will do for you is it will reduce the weight of the bike, improve aerodynamics and certain other things to optimize your performance by few % maybe somewhere around 2-4 %. I am not getting or stating any exact values here, but it’s just an approximation. Imagine if you give someone a good triathlon bike which maybe a top end model of the today’s time, but the person does not have any idea about how to be well aerodynamic, how to handle it well, how to generate more power, how to make the most out of it, what is the use if that machine? It’s useless for him/her because he don’t know the basics. Now consider an athlete who knows how and what should be an effective pedal stroke should be, how to be optimal aerodynamic position to generate more power cutting the wind at highest possible levels, that person will blast on this bike. And this is the difference.
There are n number of triathlon tools available in the market, but if you don’t have basics and fall for these, it’s just waste of money. Rather invest at right place at right time to optimize your performance. Try to prioritize things considering all your lifestyle aspects and build your triathlon around your lifestyle and not lifestyle around your triathlons because later one will be a big hassle for you. What I have realized over last couple of years is self or personal development plays a big role in your performance optimization too because it transforms the way you think and ultimately your mind or thoughts control everything that goes on around us.
Here is what I will suggest you to decide what you need at current stage in your triathlon career.
Be honest with yourself & ask these questions to you-
What is my long term goal in Triathlon?
Am I investing sufficient time already in training for triathlons?
Am I well versed with basics of the sport and training?
Do I have the system which will help me figure out what works for me well?
If I have all these then am I prioritizing my finances well considering other lifestyle aspects?
I hope it was a nice read. If you like it, do share it among your any social media circle. I will be grateful for you to do that as it may help many triathletes around.