Dreaming of racing season even though it’s months away? Triathletes in Canada don’t need to wait until the warmer months to race locally. Indoor triathlons are becoming more popular and provide the chance to test yourself in a competitive environment without heading to a warmer destination this winter. Here are four reasons to sign up for an indoor triathlon this winter.
1. Set a baseline
If you’ve taken time off training over the holidays, an early season indoor triathlon is a great way to see where your fitness is at after a few weeks of regular workouts. Based on your times in the race, you’ll know what areas you need to focus on as you ramp up your training.
2. Get in the competitive mindset
Training can be monotonous. It’s easy to lose sight of the end goal (like your target race of 2016) when there’s so much time between now and then. Break up the off-season with some competition and challenge a tri friend to join you at an indoor triathlon. Having the chance to break away from training and race will get you excited for the season to come.
3. Short and unfamiliar format
Indoor triathlons tend to be short. Usually instead of being a given distance, they are individual efforts in each discipline within a time limit. Working against the clock to complete as much swimming, cycling or running as you can tests your mental strength in an new way. You can also easily retest individual segments (such as a 10 minute bike) on your equipment at home. Indoor triathlons are also commonly in relay format. If you’ve never raced a relay before, grab some friends from your tri club and give it a try.
Some indoor triathlons change up the usual swim, bike, run format by replacing one with a sport like rowing. Rowing is a great cross-training sport that builds strength in the legs while providing a cardiovascular workout. Most gyms have rowing machines — try one out if you haven’t before.