6 Essentials for Your Triathlon Bag

As you're heading out the door to your next triathlon, the last thing you want to worry about is having everything in your transition bag.

The items you may need after the race (large beach towel, drinks, snacks, cooler, your "street" clothing) can be stowed in your car. We recommend getting into the habit of packing your transition bag the night before a race and each time you go out on a training session.

With these six essentials, you will be well prepared for your next triathlon:

Sunglasses

Eye protection can truly make your race much more comfortable. Have your favorite pair of sports sunglasses ready at first transition and enjoy. Resist the tempation to wear a pair of more "fashionable sunglasses", while they are very cool on the street, it's doubtful Chanel, Gucci, Fendi, or Prada had triathlon competitions in mind when designing them!

Transition Towel

Try placing a small (hand-towel) on the ground and arranging your gear around it, bike gear toward the front and running gear toward to rear. Coming out of the water to the transition, you can use this towel to wipe your feet off before sliding into your bike shoes.

Water Bottles

When racing in the summer heat and humidity, it is essential to bring water and electrolytes with you.

Helmet, Hat and Shoes

Your helmet is required in order to complete the biking leg. A baseball hat may come in handy providing shade for your run. And as silly as it sounds, don't forget your shoes! This may be a pair of cycling shoes and a pair of running shoes, or one set of shoes for the bike and the run. No matter, remember to put both pairs in your bag the night before to ensure you are prepared. Never use new shoes the day of a race, break them in beforehand!

Swim Cap/Goggles/Wet Suit

Without goggles it would be very tough to make it through the swim especially if you wear contact lenses! Swim caps are often supplied to you, but not always. A wetsuit or speedsuit can decrease swim times by a considerable amount if used in the right temperature. Make sure you practice with these items before using them in a race.

Timing Chip

Be sure to put on your timing chip as soon as you can the morning of your race in order to not forget it.


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Indianapolis Running Examiner Davina Lewis is a scientist and personal trainer with a long history of running.

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