Sporting Past: The Benefits

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.



by Jacqueline Wadsworth.

aerobics gym triathlon
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Aerobics and Gym

Sandra Webber spent years keeping fit at aerobics classes and gym sessions until she took up triathlon. Now she’s a dedicated triathlete, with experience at every distance from sprint to Ironman.

Benefits: Core stability is massively important in triathlon, a strong core is vital in order not to strain weak parts of the body like the back and knee. When I think back, the aerobic exercises we performed on the floor were strengthening this area although I didn’t realise how important it was at the time!

Baggage: An obsession with weight control. It’s even worse when you join a tri club. What counts for slim in an aerobics class is average in a club full of stick insects!

Biggest difference: Triathlon is much better for fitness – the three sports complement each other to give a toned body shape, and fitness is taken to a higher level.

Verdict: Hindrance - aerobics and gym sessions didn’t prepare me for the triathlon race culture which makes you train a lot harder. I can’t see myself going back to classes though!

Picture credit: Stockbyte/ Getty Images


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Discuss this article

sqush is a great game, nearly as good as running.
Posted: 02/02/2012 at 20:20

sqush is a great game, nearly as good as running.
Posted: 02/02/2012 at 20:20

is that the noise you make running in the snow or having sex in a bath of angel delight
Posted: 02/02/2012 at 21:28

I thought that said "Squishy is game"...
Posted: 03/02/2012 at 08:00

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!!


Posted: 13/02/2012 at 12:19

I used to be a cross-country runner, but suffered ankle and achilles injuries so I turned to cycling to give me a new challenge and someone said why don't you try triathlon? That got me thinking...a poor swimmer, good runner, not bad cyclist could really improve overall if I really worked on my swimming. Definitely think that the benefits of my running past are good as you get a feel for how far you can push yourself.  Bring on the triathlon!
Posted: 16/02/2012 at 20:24

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