I spent many hours handing out bike-to-run gear bags at Ironman Arizona 2012 and I learned a few things that also might help you move on to the run.
- Yell out your number multiple times so volunteers can help get you your bag.
- You can leave your helmet on as you run to get your bag or take it off but hold it so volunteers can see your number. That way they'll know who you are and what bag to give you.
- Or, instead of using your helmet number, turn your race belt around to the front as you go to your bag so a volunteer knows where to send you and knows who to give your bag to.
- Just like in any triathlon, know where your stuff is so you can find it yourself, or so you can at least know where to go to get your bag from a volunteer. So many triathletes, including a few pros, had no idea where they had left their bag even though the bags were all well-organized into neat rows in numerical order.
- Finally, be grateful and thank any volunteers you come across as you race. They are there to help make your day one to remember.
A little forethought and practice can go a long way in helping make your next race a more positive experience.
Of all the observations volunteers make, perhaps this final tip (that's 24) is the most important: triathletes come in all shapes, sizes, and ability levels. Don't think you have to look like a pro triathlete to do it. If you do the training, you will be successful.More: 6 Newbie Mistakes to Avoid
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