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Six ways to become a better triathlete in 2017

With 2016 around the corner, triathletes are beginning to plan their upcoming triathlon season. This is a great time to reflect on what went well in the past year and where you’re looking to improve next year. Did you complete your first triathlon and want to improve your time next year? Did you overcome your fear of open-water swimming and now want to become as strong a swimmer as possible? Here are 6 ways to become a better triathlete in 2017.

swim start1. Sign up for a new race

One of the best ways to challenge yourself as a triathlete is to sign up for a race you’ve never done before. Whether its a new distance or a new location, a new race will put you out of your comfort zone. If you normally stick to flat races, try one with some steep hills. If you’ve been thinking about moving up to the half or full distance, make 2016 the year you commit.

2. Keep a training log

If you don’t already keep a training log, make it a New Year’s resolution. Keeping a log of your workouts and how you’re feeling helps you analyse what’s working and where you need to focus more attention. It will also help you see if you’re spending too much time on one area of your training and neglecting something important, like speed work.

3.  Add healthy foods to your dietKale is all the rage.

Most triathletes are careful of what they’re eating, but might be unaware of some foods with extra goodness. In 2017, add something new to your diet that will improve your training and your overall health. We recommend these superfoods  with specific healing properties to aid in faster recovery during your hard training weeks.

4. Get more sleep

Triathletes already know how important sleep is but few get as much as they need. While life gets in the way and it can be difficult to sleep well every night, consider it an investment in your training. Train your body to go to bed earlier and avoid distractions (like your phone, TV or computer) as you get ready to go to sleep. There are also several foods you can eat that will help you sleep better.

Ottawa Triathlon Club members at the 2010 Riverkeeper Triathlon (now the Ottawa River Triathlon). Photo by Marc Lavoie/Zoomphoto.ca5. Find new people to train with

There’s no need to find a new group of training partners, but meeting new people in the triathlon community is a great way to become a better triathlete. New training partners can push you in your training and encourage your to add important aspects like strength training or more pool sessions. They might bring a new perspective and reinvigorate your love for the sport.

6. Find a training plan and stick to it

Finding and using a training plan for your next race is the best way to improve a previous time or achieve a specific race goal. This could mean reaching out to a coach or someone more experienced to help you build the best plan for you. Staying on track with a training plan forces you to push through the uncomfortable times and come out stronger. When you approach your target race, you’ll feel confident knowing you put in all the work required to achieve your goals.