Sex and Triathlon: Do They Mix?



This could be a little awkward—especially since my mom still likes to post my work on her fridge—but, guess what? I'm telling you to have more sex!

It's a fact: Triathlon training is tough. It leaves you depleted of time and energy, and most evenings all you want to do is go to sleep before sunset so you can be up well before sunrise. This mentality is somewhat of a badge of honor among triathletes. When setting my alarm I often remind myself "everyone gets the sunset, only the dedicated earn the sunrise."

More: The Best Triathlon Accounts to Follow on Instagram

This is a reality of our sport, but too often training comes at the cost of our relationships, specifically, our marriages. Our spouses support our crazy endeavors, and we need to be there for them emotionally and physically. Triathletes have an excessively high divorce rate—make sure your marriage does not fall prey.    

As important as sex is to our relational health, there is a benefit to your triathlon performance as well. Intimacy is a great way to mitigate stress. Your body absorbs training, a rough day at the office, boisterous kids, etc. in a very similar fashion. It's important to find a way to deal with this, and sex is one of the easiest things I can advise. 

If you're too tired or stressed for sex, then you're too tired, mate! You need some down time to recover and rest. Your libido is actually a very good indicator of your overall health, including your capacity for additional training. 

More: The Case of the Unhealthy Triathlete

If your drive isn't what it used to be, it's time to evaluate why. Additionally, sex helps regulate hormones vital to support your workload and is required for strength gains. Some outdated beliefs suggest sex before a big race can deplete overall performance, but the review of several studies either show no effect or in some cases improvements in competition.         

It's up to you from here. Please be more romantic than to tell your spouse a coach said to have more sex. Remember, it's more than just that. 

Usually I love feedback from my athletes, but please do not provide any in this case. We're on the honor system with this one. 

About the Author

John Mayfield

John Mayfield is a USAT certified coach and coaches with the TriDot Training System, a data driven approach that takes the guess work out of triathlon training and racing. Coach John specializes in working with athletes with busy schedules and lofty goals. As a husband and father of three, he understands training, racing and recovery must all be prioritized alongside family, careers and faith.

John Mayfield is a USAT certified coach and coaches with the TriDot Training System, a data driven approach that takes the guess work out of triathlon training and racing. Coach John specializes in working with athletes with busy schedules and lofty goals. As a husband and father of three, he understands training, racing and recovery must all be prioritized alongside family, careers and faith.

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