How to Ease the Transition to Outdoor Training

Getting Run Ready

As for running, the switch from treadmill to pavement or the track isn't as tricky as cycling, but it still requires a little patience. As you prepare to move your workouts outdoors, make sure you're bumping your treadmill's incline up between 1 and 3 percent at all times, says Kipping-Ruane.

"If you train at 0 percent, the roads and trails will feel tougher, and you may even feel slower. Running at an incline will make the transition easier."

Now may also be a good time to re-up your running gear, too. "Consider replacing your shoes if you have been running in them all winter," says Fauth. You'll also want to pick up a visor or a lightweight hat so your head and face are protected from the sun, and breathable, moisture-wicking shirts and shorts that will keep you cool as the temps heat up.

More: 2014 Spring Gear Guide for Triathletes

Testing the Waters

While the winter-to-summer transition with swimming requires little, if any, preparation—you'll still do 90 percent of your swims in a pool year-round—you may want to consider doing a few open water swims once the weather warms up, suggests Kipping-Ruane. "It would be great if you could swim in [a lake or the ocean] a few times before a race, but that's not always the case because of water temps."

If you're from a colder climate or just don't have access to open water, you can still try to simulate a mass start by grabbing a few of your training partners and taking off together in one lane. This can help you acclimate to the inevitable flailing of arms and legs.

"When I'm coaching athletes, I really yank on them or really push them around in the water so that if they get that type of practice," says Kipping-Ruane. "In my opinion, that's what will get you ready for race day."

More: 3 Drills for Open Water Swimming

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