K.I.S.S.

Shoes, towel and water bottle

You’ve heard this before: Keep It Simple Stupid (K.I.S.S.). Well, in triathlon, it isn’t any different and yet, so many of us make it more complicated than it needs to be. Here are a few tips on keeping a few things I’ve seen in my time, not so complicated:

Transition Space

This is not the time or space to pitch a tent. The goal of transitions is not to spend time there but rather, to get in and out as quickly as possible. You need a towel, bike shoes (if not on your bike already), helmet, running shoes, (maybe) socks, sunglasses, and a race belt. Nutrition should already be on your bike, ready to go, like you.

Nutrition

Eat to live, not live to eat. The same goes for fueling your endurance lifestyle, with the exception of feeding yourself during training and events. And even then, it should be simple and fit on your bike or your body. If you don’t know what works for you, get some professional help and figure it out. This is absolutely one of the BEST things you can do for yourself as an endurance athlete. Fueling during life, training, and events is not the time to go the buffet. It’s time to be aware of what you NEED to get from point A to point B.

Spandex

I’m just gonna say it, not even supermodels look good in spandex. If you are spending your time and energy thinking about HOW you look vs. WHAT your body can do, you are wasting valuable resources (i.e. energy) that could be used to train and race. This is one I’m still working on myself. So, you do you—wear what you are comfortable in and enables you to kick ass, and don’t worry about people looking at that ass!

Technology

When it works, it’s awesome but, be ready for it not to work. Have this conversation with yourself before you start. What alternatives can you use to gauge your activity besides what your watch or power meter reports? No where is simplicity more important than using outside measuring resources. They can convince you of anything that you let them: you’re fast, you’re slow, you suck, or you rock. Don’t give that much power to something you wear on your wrist or bike.

Gratitude

And finally, this is not really a tip but, something else to consider. Never lose sight that in a moment, everything your body is doing now, it may not be able to always do. Every day that you have the opportunity to take part in endurance sports should be celebrated. Even the bad workouts or events; these are where the greatest lessons lie. When you approach this sport with gratitude, it gives back a million times. Take the time to say “thank you” to the volunteers, to slap the hands of the little kids (who think you are a sports god), and to kiss that family member before crossing the finish line. Take the time to celebrate.

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