1. Full Body Workout1 of 8
Training for and participating in a triathlon works all of the major muscles in the body and provides several fitness benefits. All three disciplines provide aerobic benefits for the cardiovascular system.
Swimming is a great upper body workout, and it provides a cool, comfortable environment for workouts. Cycling can be done indoors or outdoors, and can improve balance, a skill that's increasingly valuable as we age. Running is a weight-bearing exercise, which helps maintain bone density. It's also the most convenient sport to do while traveling.
2. Workout Motivation2 of 8
The motivation to finish workouts and get fit comes much easier when you have a goal to accomplish in the near future. Look ahead and find a race to do. Unless you currently have a strong base of swim, bike or run fitness, it's best to begin with a sprint distance triathlon. These are usually about 500 yards of swimming, 13 to 15 miles of cycling and a 3.1-mile run.
3. A Growing Sport3 of 8
According to the USA Triathlon website, statistics show that as of June 2014, the sport of triathlon has experienced nearly 20 years of growth. A 2013 survey done by the Outdoor Foundation found that in the previous three years, triathlon had the biggest participation percentage increase in any sport for people older than five years old.
4. Exhilaration4 of 8
Thinking about a new challenge can be intimidating. Fear can arise because false expectations appear real. Self-doubt creeps into our thoughts and prevents us from taking the first step towards achieving a goal that's entirely within reach. For those that take the necessary steps to train for and complete a race, the exhilaration of victory is well worth the work.
5. A Healthy Way to Spend Time with Friends5 of 8
Many people find that setting a fitness goal with a friend or a small group of friends is not only motivating, but a fun and healthy way to spend time together. Planning workouts with friends can create a positive peer pressure situation. If you know others are planning to swim, bike or run with you, it makes it harder to blow off a workout.
6. Weight Loss6 of 8
Many athletes find that they want to eat better when they are training for something. They want the synergistic effects of healthy eating and aerobic exercise. The end result of this synergy is often weight loss. Some may find that there's no change in the scale, but rather a change in physique. A lean body, healthy lifestyle and better fitting clothes are just a few of the benefits to triathlon training.
7. Problem Solving and Stress Relief7 of 8
Ask any triathlete if they've ever solved a work issue or a personal problem during a workout session, and I estimate more than 95-percent of them will say they have. Triathletes often find that aerobic workouts allow the mind to wander, unload stress and find solutions to problems.