New to Triathlons, what bike and equipment to get?

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TheEngineer    pirate
29/08/2013 at 16:53

1. Don't I see them swim in a cut off wetsuit, cycle in same one then do the run in the same one, so just 1 outfit for all 3 disciplines? Id prefer to do that so its called a trisuite yes? Any recommended makes?

A trisuit is a lycra one or two piece garment that you may wear for the entire duration. This saves you time in transition. A wetsuit is worn over the top for most events, but between certain temperatures are banned or optional. A swim skin is something totally different (and surplus to your requirements).

2. I presume I change from swimming to cycle gear ie put cycle shoes on at a change stage where I collect the bike yes? But when would I change from cycle shoes to trainers for running? These are all kept in a bag yes at my allocated changing points?
Yes, this is called T1. You change from bike to run in T2. Usually a bag or box in each (or the same) location. If you have to ask these questions, go and watch an event.

3. Would £500 get me a cheap carbon bike, are they better?
No. And if you have to ask, no.

4. Am I best using toe clips for the bike, whats the best pedal connection to use?
Clipless Pedals. Buy cheap ones and get used to them. On the road, not the turbo.

5. Goggles for the swim yes or no?
Yes, unless you like dirty water in your eyes.

6. I own a nike plus gps watch will this do instead of the garmin 910?
No computer is compulsory for triathlon. If you’re happy, stay happy don’t worry about other equipment.

7. I'd like to do 1 a month if possible, the standard distance, then do an ironman last next year.
Great. You do that.

8. Can you recommend a good bike under £500?
One that fits.

9. Id need water bottle holder on the bike yes, what extras would I need on the bike?
You’ll need a water bottle unless you plan on hydrating by osmosis. Depending what you define as extras and whether you’ve got big pockets (literally, not financially), you’ll need a bag for tools. If you do longer distances, you will also need to carry nutrition.

10. I wont go cycling near me on roads as too dangerous so would use a turbo trainer, Halfords have one for £120, can you recommend a good turbo trainer?
Go cycling on the roads. If you’re too scared to ride on any road near where you live, you’ve no place getting on your bike in a mass participation event – you’ll be a liability to others. This will reduce how much you spend on turbo tyres (see below).

11. Ive been told ill need special tyre for turbo trainer can you advise on this?
Judging by how new you are to this, I’m guessing you won’t do enough time to wear your tyres very quickly. If you do, buy a cheap tyre. Turbo tyres are hardwearing, but relatively expensive.

12. Any good websites or forums busy that I can get advise from thanks?
You’re on probably the most accommodating forum on the topic (my present mood excepted)

13. Id like to be competitive so want decent ish gear though  not bikes into the thousands.
Train like hell, and better yourself, but don't delude yourself. Spending £500 won’t put you on a level with those who are dedicated to the sport, nor those who've done it for years. Given you “want to get into triathlon” may I suggest that you decide if you like it before deciding you can be competitive.

14. Did you do the recent London one, that looked good, ill do that next year?

15. Which are the best brands, helmets, shoes etc?
These are personal choices. Generally you’ll find that free market economics tends to give a good indication of premium brands – handily markin

cougie    pirate
29/08/2013 at 17:16
Good answers Mr Engineer. I didn't spot that he was afraid of the road.

Mark - if a bit of traffic puts you off - how will you cope with a mass start in a swim ?
How will you cope with other triathletes whizzing past you ? How will you avoid swerving and crashing into people.

I don't think Triathlon is the sport for you. You had enough difficulties with the marathon last year if I recall ?
29/08/2013 at 17:41

As a very recent newbie to cycling I can appreciate your concern on the roads. I live in Bradford and I am fairly sure that at least half of the city's residents obtained driving licences on the back of cornflake boxes - the standard of driving is atrocious and the roads are packed. 

four weeks down the line I realised that it isn't as bad as I thought and I must need to pay attention and secondly if I ride out of the city it is not only a much more pleasant ride on quieter roads but also that I ride further as I do not spend half the time stopped at traffic lights, crossings and roundabouts. 

29/08/2013 at 17:43

A well considered and concise explanation Mr Engineer, Sir  

29/08/2013 at 19:48

Amazing post Mr Engineer. Love it!

29/08/2013 at 20:42
I'd like to do Triathlon but I don't like getting wet!
seren nos    pirate
29/08/2013 at 20:44


Edited: 29/08/2013 at 20:44
29/08/2013 at 23:08

Exile. Only half of Bratfud's drivers got their licence on a cornflake box?  Blimey, improved since we moved.

30/08/2013 at 10:51
GraemeK wrote (see)

Exile. Only half of Bratfud's drivers got their licence on a cornflake box?  Blimey, improved since we moved.



I was being generous.


Had the Bradford traffic byelaw of being able to park wherever you want as long as you put your hazzards on been introduced in the city before you left? On my run on Tuesday evening I past 4 double parked cars in the space of about a km, when going along Manningham Lane in Frizinghall & Shipley.

Edited: 30/08/2013 at 10:51
30/08/2013 at 11:13

"9. Id need water bottle holder on the bike yes, what extras would I need on the bike?
You’ll need a water bottle unless you plan on hydrating by osmosis."

class - absolute class....

30/08/2013 at 12:42

Exile. Oh yes, and skipping a queue by driving half a mile on the wrong side of the road then cutting in, straight on in the left/right turn lane and of course private hire cars are exempt from speed limits and any other traffic law. Aaah, how I miss Bradford, sometimes. 

30/08/2013 at 13:40

Graeme - I learned to drive in the Bradford area - fantastic training as I now live in Italy and Italian drivers are nutters. No road rage episodes though

30/08/2013 at 13:46

See now you two managed to escape the delights of the Bravo Delta postcode - muggins here on the other hand moved here from somewhere else, I have always been a bit odd though. 



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