New to triathlon or taking on new challenges in the off-season? Find out how your other sporting loves can impact on your triathlon progress.
Martyn Green was a competitive bodybuilder for five years and was British Junior Champion in 1988. He’s now a top regional age-group triathlete in the South-West.
Benefits: In some ways bodybuilding set me up well for triathlon, with strong muscles which support my joints and help protect me from injury, and good core strength. It also taught me about self-discipline in training, nutrition, and I am able to diet to a target bodyweight.
Baggage: Quite a lot really! Useless muscle mass on the chest and arms - I am constantly battling to lose muscle mass to keep my weight down. Poor basic aerobic fitness because bodybuilders neglect it in order to gain weight. Ex-bodybuilders also carry the wrong kind of muscle fibres - lots of fast-twitch muscles when what is needed is slow-twitch. This can lead to a tendency to cramp easily and poor strength endurance which is needed while cycling and swimming.
Biggest difference: Triathlon is a much healthier sport and far more enjoyable!
Verdict: Help and a hindrance - bodybuilding proved useful, although no more than any competitive sporting background would have been, but there are definite disadvantages too.
Picture credit: Shapeshifters/ Getty Images
I was a squash player who turned to Triathlon for fitness, now its Triathlon that's my main sport and only play squash in the winter months, the extra fitness and stamina has made me a better squash player even though I have a 6 month break each year!!
Visit the official Triathlete's World page
Follow Triathlete's World on Twitter
Other Natmag-Rodale Sites
About Triathlete's World