Hardcore triathletes are a peculiar breed. Highly committed to the swim, bike and run, they live and breath the sport they love. Triathletes invest a great deal of time, money and energy to training and racing. All this makes for a unique experience if you’re dating a triathlete. It means you’ll have to become accustomed to all their quirks, and if the reasons to date a triathlete outweigh the reasons to stay away, then you should be prepared. Here are eight tips you should be prepared for when you’re dating a triathlete – and how to make it work.

1) Don’t plan a party before an upcoming race. 

It’s not that we don’t like to party. Trust us, we do. But because we have to get our pre-race checklist in order, and get lots of sleep, the party planning will have to wait until after our race.

Related: Why dating a triathlete is awesome

2) WARNING: budget money for food – a lot of food.

Yes, we eat a lot. Sorry.

3) Triathletes tend to get a lot of flack from cyclists (our ‘friends’), so please try not to judge our training/racing apparel.

We wear shorter than normal socks (vs cyclists). We wear compression socks, which are usually some fluorescent highlighter colour. But we also have a drawer of other compression gear, legs and arms – we may even have those recovery pants that look like something you might see on an astronaut.

Triathletes competing at Ironman 70.3 Oceanside in 2017.

Related: Why you should never date a triathlete

4) Accept our hygiene choices.

This is one area of our lives that’s not likely to change – hygiene. We smell like chlorine. We sweat a lot. And yes, we do shave our legs – “#AeroIsEverything.” However, we will try our best.

5) “The talk” 

It’s not what you think. This one is about our investment choices. Triathlon is an investment. So, before you enter into a serious relationship with a triathlete, make sure you have ‘The Talk.” What new gear can we afford? What races would we like to do? What makes sense for both of us?

6) Hide your snacks.

With us, no snacks are safe. If you have something you are really looking forward to eating, the best practice is to make it hard to find so it doesn’t disappear after the pantry is raided post-swim, -ride, or -run. A lot of training results in a large appetite, so it’s never a bad idea to have extra snacks on hand.

Related: A triathlete’s ideal date

7) Strava is our social media of choice.

Triathletes are obsessed with gear, numbers, and Strava. So, while you may talk about a post you saw on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram, be prepared to familiarize yourself with the intricacies of the social media platform where athletes share their rides, runs, and swims. It’s a place where they’ll find out if they beat their personal best on a segment or even better, snagged that KOM.

Related: 6 hacks to take down your local KOM on Strava

8) We secretly – or not so secretly – want you to come out on a few training sessions.

Don’t worry, we will keep it easy and fun. Despite all the quirks and commitment it takes to become a triathlete, in the perfect world you’d warm up to it enough to take it up as well.

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