10 Ways to Keep Triathlon Fun
1. Join a new group1 of 11
Triathlon clubs and running groups can be a great source of motivation and fun, but sometimes your regular group can get a little stale. There's no harm in switching things up for a little while--ride with a group of people you've never ridden with before or drop into a different Masters for some new technique tips. Maybe the change will be long term, or maybe just getting away from your regular group will help you appreciate what you have.
2. Sign up for a destination race2 of 11
There's nothing quite like racing in an exotic location, and even your training will seem a little more exciting as you plan your journey and prepare for new terrain and a new race culture. Also, there's often less performance pressure at a destination race, as you learn to appreciate your surroundings and be more thankful for what your body allows you to do.
3. Lose the watch3 of 11
Triathlon can be an incredibly data-driven activity, and months and months of pouring over your activity analytics can really take the fun out of your training routine. Try unplugging for a few weeks. Head out for a run and go as long and hard as you like. Do the same thing in the pool and on your bike. You'll likely go longer, feel better and experience the joy in movement.
4. Focus on your strengths for a while4 of 11
While focusing on your worst leg is one of the best ways to improve your race time, it can also do a number on your morale. If the bike leg is not your favorite part of the race, but you really love running, then hang the bike up for a couple of weeks (you won't lose your fitness I promise!). Enjoy yourself and lace up your running shoes for a few weeks of run-heavy training.
5. Try a new distance5 of 11
Many of us begin to identify as a certain type of triathlete, i.e. a "70.3-distance" or "Olympic-distance" racer. Throw the script on its head and sign up for a few races you haven't done in a while, or one big one that you've never participated in (but wanted to). Bite the bullet and sign up for that IRONMAN, or, take a break from the long course stuff and work on your speed in the Olympic distance. The training and racing shakeup will be exciting and mentally refreshing.
6. Volunteer at a race6 of 11
Triathlons are always on the lookout for eager volunteers to help the day go smoothly. Man an aid station at your local IRONMAN or serve as a swim buddy for a para-athlete or newbie triathlete. You'll have more fun than you thought possible, and you're guaranteed a huge serving of motivation to get back out there and toe the line yourself.
7. Bribe yourself7 of 11
Bribery doesn't just work wonders on small children--it can also be a great source of motivation. Whether it's a new pair of race wheels or that cool new GPS watch you've been eyeing--tell yourself that if you train consistently for the next four weeks, you can buy it.
8. Find a triathlon mentor8 of 11
Finding a veteran triathlete who motivates you and can regale you with stories about the sport is a sure-fire way to have fun training and regain your motivation. Try planning a weekly meet-up with them where you head out for a run or meet for coffee to "talk tri." Just make sure to keep your ears open for valuable advice that can make a difference in your own multisport journey.
9. Become a triathlon mentor9 of 11
If you're the one who's been around the tri block, why not take a triathlon newbie under your wing? Most of us tri-veterans have friends who are on the fence about signing up for a race. Help them press "Register Here," then have fun giving pointers and comforting them as they prepare for their first triathlon.
10. Map out a long-term racing calendar10 of 11
There's something sacred about sitting down at the beginning of the year and mapping out your races for the season. But, who says it has to be done right before the season begins? If you need a quick dose of excitement, sit down and pick out several races you'd like to do in the next year. Maybe they'll happen, maybe they won't, but just planning them out is a fun and easy way to get motivated for distant races.