1. Start with a ‘sprint’ before attempting an Ironman!
An Ironman event consists of a whoppinges of swimming, 112 miles of cycling and 26.2 miles of running. For first time triathletes, this would be very difficult to achieve without risking injury and disappointment. There are many shorter sprint-distance events (eg. about 400 yards of swimming, 12 miles of cycling and 3 miles of running) which are fantastic to get started. Another option is to start by choosing a sprint duathlon or swim-run event.
2. Enter a race near to where you live
To minimise any barriers to starting races, make your first race close to home. This will be much easier to prepare for and you may even be able to train on the course routes.
3. You need excellent running shoes, bespoke to your running style
I recommend seeing a podiatrist. They should ask you questions about your feet, running history and watch your gait while walking and running. And at the end of the consultation he/she will be able to guide you to the correct pair of shoes.
4. Don’t train too hard
Most sprint-distance races need a maximum of five hours per week of training, which makes starting so much easier.
5. Plan rest into your training schedule
Rest is absolutely vital for your recovery between training sessions, before and after races. It is easy to get caught up in training hard, but this is where people become more at risk of becoming injured. The most important thing is to enjoy all of it.
6. Visit your physiotherapist weekly
This will allow you to continue your training with minimal injury and cater for your aches and pain. Physiotherapists work to prevent and to minimise your injuries as well as treating them. With 1 hour a week – your physiotherapist will be able to run a weekly M.O.T on you. Prevention is better than cure!