Avoid this newbie mistake:
Keep in mind that running on its own is different than running off the bike. “Beginner athletes often underestimate the impact the swim and bike can have on their run performance,” coach Bethany Rutledge says. “One’s ability to run well off the bike is often dependent on bike fitness and pacing.”
If you’ve never done a triathlon, practice doing brick workouts, says another coach, Stephanie Liles. Right after a bike ride, do a 10-minute run off the bike. Practice this a few times preceding your race. “It helps you experience the feeling of wobbly legs that you will feel during the race.”
The only real gear investment you need to make for running is a good pair of shoes. If possible, go to a specialty running store to have someone watch you run and outfit you with shoes for your stride type, and try on multiple pairs. Retire your kicks after 300–500 miles or 6–8 months. (Need help remembering? Take a Sharpie and write the date you bought them somewhere on the shoe.)
Looking for a triathlon to sign up for this year? Check out our partner, the TriRock Series. Their seven events feature a fun atmosphere for triathletes of all levels.