Is triathlon a fleeting obsession on a personal agenda?

21 to 40 of 55 messages
16/10/2012 at 10:40

there's no simple answer

I've been doing tri for nearly 10 years - and during that time have seen the sport grow enormously and that will continue for a few years yet until it does eventually reach a saturation/maturity point.  as pops says, you can hardly do tri without it being part of a competition whereas cycling, running , swimming can be sole endeavours as a way of keeping fit without competing.  

so if triathlon as the "sport de jour" that everyone seems to want to do helps people get into the single disciplines to keep fit, then great - it's serving a purpose.

and as for officiating - I would hope that more people take this up as well as competing (you can do both) as there is a crying need for more officials as the sport grows.  



16/10/2012 at 12:22

I'm in this purely for me and my head, no idea if I'll stick at it long term although I see no reason why not.

I think you can be a triathlete a not race as you train in swimming, biking and running.

The split of sports means I don't obsess over any one thing and the variation stops me injuring myself by over doing one thing.  

Cost, coming from Dressage Triathlon is positively cheap. I also like that the single key fail or success element is me and only me.

I certainly don't do this for times or race placings, it's purely about seeing what I can do and getting good healthy exercise for my body and my mind.

Oh and Triathletes are a very friendly bunch I like the encouragement for everyone vibe, I didn't get that when I was just running.

Britrisky    pirate
16/10/2012 at 12:34

I echo what AliBear says - I got into running and then tri, but reckon that tri means I do can more exercise (and therefore eat more?!) without hammering my knees.

I like the variety, I think, and yes, they are a friendly bunch, but then my running club is too

16/10/2012 at 12:47
popsider wrote (see)

As far as individuals go though I'd expect more to stick with being runners or cyclists than triathletes simply because you can be a runner without racing, you can be a very keen cyclist never having raced, can you be a triathlete if you aren't competing ?  Most people get fed up of the competition at some point - maybe they just can't devote as much time to be as good as they were or as good as they feel they should be.    

But of course!

I only do 1 (possibly 2) triathlons a year, usually when someone talks me into it, and quite frankly it wouldn't bother me not to compete at all.  I enjoy the variety of training (when I get off my ass to do any that is) and love the variety of people I meet and the craic

I'm also a member of both a running and a tri club but that is pretty much for the chance to mix with folks in training and socially and not in order to be able to compete

I still consider myself a triathlete - albeit a rather portly middle aged one  and will probably end up being a portly old one a decade or two down the line....


Iron Muffin    pirate
16/10/2012 at 13:10

Great attitude Podds.

I would be tempted to be a runner instead if I wasn't so sh1te at it

Ironholgs    pirate
16/10/2012 at 13:58

I can't see me ever giving it up, although there have been times when I've wanted to. I fell into the sport accidently and now love it.
I don't race as much as I used to because of cost, as a fairly new parent I have other priorities now escpecially financially.

However I'm equally excited at the prospect of running a sub 40 minute 10k as I am of doing a sub 12 ironman. I just like to push myself I guess.

I'm heavily involved in a local club and a load of my friends are into the sport, so I guess it's a long term investment for me.

16/10/2012 at 15:04 feel the fear, do it anyway wrote (see)

I only do 1 (possibly 2) triathlons a year, usually when someone talks me into it, and quite frankly it wouldn't bother me not to compete at all.  

Ah but you still compete even if it's only a couple of races a year.   The triathlete that never competes must be fairly rare - whereas in cycling or running former competitive amateurs who still run or ride - often to a decent level of fitness - are quite common.   

Cheerful Dave    pirate
16/10/2012 at 15:27

Is someone who runs, cycles and swims ocassionally a triathlete, even if they've never competed in a triathlon?  Or if you have, but haven't for a while, are you still a triathlete?  When do you become an ex-triathlete, or are you branded for life once you've had your first taste of T1 & T2?

Ironholgs    pirate
16/10/2012 at 15:30

Surely you can only be a triathlete if you've finished one?

and until that point you are either a runner, a swimmer or a cyclist training to do your first triathlon?

Edited: 16/10/2012 at 15:31
16/10/2012 at 15:31

If swimming, running and cycling makes you a triathlete then i've been one since around 2 years old although i held of competing in one till i was 33, so i guess it's a long term thing for me.

Cheerful Dave    pirate
16/10/2012 at 15:44

That was my point really, I was broadly agreeing with pops in that being a triathlete by definition involves competing, whereas being a runner, cyclist or swimmer doesn't.

16/10/2012 at 16:45

I havnt yet done a triathlon but now consider myself a triathlete due to the fact that ive been training like one for several months now and am a member of a triathlon club.

before that i was a runner though i havnt entered an event for probably 7 years now but still enjoy the training, Ive no idea what my times are like now compared with then, i keep getting tempted to enter something and find out but then think, travel time, hanging around before the start, paying to enter, I'd rather just spend that time training.

after next years Outlaw I hope to continue to train in all 3 sports but probably wont compete that often, I'm very much enjoying the variety of training.

Having said that there are a few other ironman events i'd maybe like to do in the future and also fancy doing some longer swim and cycle events.

Edited: 16/10/2012 at 16:46
16/10/2012 at 19:22

I think there are two (maybe more) types of triathletes.  No.1 is someone who uses it as a way of getting/staying in shape, but doesn`t `love` training. No.2 is someone who trains for the love of training and the benefits it gives them, and competing is the reward or buzz for all the hard work.  If competing was made illegal, No.2 would train anyway, No.1 would go back to the couch.  I`ve been a No.2 (that doesn`t sound good) for 30 years.

kittenkat    pirate
16/10/2012 at 19:34

For me the term triathlete is in the moment. Currently I'm not cycling or swimming so I'm not one right now.

Also currently I guess I'm sitting on my arse cooking bacon so I'm not a runner either.

I was a runner about an hour ago...

(Ok, not that much in the moment)

IronCat5    pirate
16/10/2012 at 21:41

DOM may have something there, though it could be distance dependant. I hate swimming with a passion, and it's a drag to go there. That's why I prefer club swims, as it is brain off and go.

Now I'm concentrating on shorter shorter stuff, it's a little more fun. Tonight I ran with a club in Austria. Didn't know where we were going, or how far. Only that it would be less than 90 minutes. I really enjoyed it. No targets.

After the Outlaw I had grand plans, but the body and mind said no. I was worried that I was done with tri, but I then found something called a sprint, which was over in time for elevenses, and so fits in with me spending more time with my family.

meface    pirate
16/10/2012 at 22:20

Definitely a passing phase for me.

I did a bit of gymnastics at school and then switched to Rugby about 15/16. I played that for 15 years up to semi-pro level and then gave it up as I kept displacing vertabrae in my back (T1-T3).

Then I got lazy and did hill walking for a few years then started running. Then a triathlon - think I am in 4th or 5th season now. Will I stop? Probably at some point - so definitely a passing phase.

I like road biking, running, mountain biking, have grown to like swimming. I love the adventure race stuff, although best done only now and again, not sure they would be the same if done every month.

I suspect many will come into triathlon and compete and then move into other areas as well. They will use the skills, I fancy the Dark 10k swim but it is enabled by the triathlete in me.

I can do an easy paced run, can I do an easy paced triathlon? Not really. I have similar scenario in swimming. I can do an easy breast stroke or crawl - I can't do an easy Individual Medley. So yes I think a Triathlete, in general, is either competing, wanting to compete (ijured, skint), or a member of triathlon club. Other than that they are a just a person who trains at running, swimming and biking. Simialr discussions to be had with runner vs. jogger (former strives to improve, races or acheives a certain pace depednign on who you listen to).

I hope to continue to train at all three for a long time it provides variety, enables training when you have sport specifc injuries. You can mix with more people. And for me one of the main benefits is when you look at any aerobic based event you think - I could do that (with the exception of skiing maybe).

Dart 10k River Swim, Scotland Coast-2-Coast, Mountain Bike the South Downs Way, and many many more events I look at. All great life experiences in my view.


17/10/2012 at 18:58
I thought I would take up running to get fit, after 1 run I decided I wanted to do a triathlon and then call myself a triathlete, not before. I found, via the Internet thingy a sprint one in May next year at the Olympic rowing venue.
That I thought would be it, then I found this bloody forum so now I'm aiming for an ironman in 2014. The sprint is now my target to make sure I can get to decent base levels before I start training for the big one.

In about 4 weeks I've gone from no exercise to running (slowly), swimming and riding my new bike!

So to me I think it has become an obsession and I hope it stays that way, I have even had to force myself to have a rest day tomorrow, 4 weeks ago even I would not have believed I would be forcing myself to rest.
17/10/2012 at 20:23

KK - you ask a lot of questions

meface    pirate
17/10/2012 at 20:42
SuperSparx wrote (see)
So to me I think it has become an obsession and I hope it stays that way, I have even had to force myself to have a rest day tomorrow, 4 weeks ago even I would not have believed I would be forcing myself to rest.

Wise man says you only get fitter rest.

Yoda says fitter you want, rest you must

OrangeCannon kona-6    pirate
17/10/2012 at 22:13
I like the fact that triathletes enter races and compete. even if its just with themselves to complete it, or just to get a bit faster, or feel less shattered at the end

The whole age group thing is a real positive in triathlon, and probably one of the reasons its so successful.

A lot of people compete as in a marathon..... They are never gonna win but have great fun getting fitter and fastrr every year.

A passing fad...? I dont think its ever going to be mainstream ( being a marathon runner is a minority sport) but there seems enougj interest from wanna be marayhoners to stoke the fires....
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