+1 Training Buddies Rock: Things I Wish I Knew as a New Triathlete

#6 Training Buddies Rock
Series: Things I Wish I Knew as a New Triathlete.

My family moved from New York to Minnesota and I became the new kid on the block. Each day my Dad walked me up and down our block looking for other families with young kids. Fortunately we found several. My sister and I joined the neighborhood pack and spent our free time running wild and loving it.

As an adult, training for my first iron-distance triathlon, I desperately needed some pack time. But, I was intimidated by the large local triathlon clubs. I tried a couple of clubs' rides but I felt awkward. I thought I was: too inexperienced, too slow & too heavy to fit in! I felt like an idiot and my shyness made Twilight's Bella Swan seem outgoing.

My Ironman training suffered. While triathlon is an individual sport, a good training buddy is a powerful training boost! The right training partner(s) can: motivate, encourage, & push you to become a stronger, wiser, healthier & happier triathlete.

Years later I'd finally connect with some great training buddies:
- Amy V, Bob, Steve & Sarah took care of me on my first bike tour.
- Amy G & I rocked spin class.
- Stephanie and I trained together for her first sprint triathlon.
- Teri & I power-walked the hills in our neighborhood.
- Anna, Betsy & I work our core and more while doing Zumba together.
(Seinfeld's Elaine Benes has nothing on our dance moves...)

And, I've found friendship and confidence participating in online tri communities. Visit me in active.com's triathlon community, I'm a volunteer moderator! I love chatting with other triathletes. Come check us out.

And, visit GOTRIbal, a global organization aimed at empowering women and promoting triathlon around the world. With two-time World Ironman Champion Chrissie Wellington's support GOTRIbal is quickly connecting triathletes across the world.

Visit GOTRIbal

Questions for you:
- Do you train with a pack?
- How did you get connected and what have you learned by training with a friend/group?
- What communities have you grown to love?

Triathlon is a rewarding sport for people of all ages and abilities. 2009 is your year to taste triathlon. As a triathlete, you'll surprise yourself as you face fears and set personal bests. You'll be more confident, have more energy and smile more often. People will be drawn to that difference. Triathlon is a rewarding sport for people of all ages and abilities, wearing underwear is optional. Sleestak sightings rare. Dogs, many. Bunnies, eaten. Friends essential.

Check out Why You Can series:
Common excuses:1-I have no time. 2-I can't afford it. 3-I'm too old. 4-I'm afraid. 5-I'm not an athlete.

Series: Things I Wish I Knew As a New Triathlete:
#1 My swimsuit was see-through.
#2 Go Commando: Things I Wish I Knew
#3 Land of the Lost Training
#4 Chopper, sic'em, Boy!
#5 I Ate the Bunny

photos: top-My dad & I sit on the backyard fence of our new MN home. bottom-Stephanie & I before the start of our swim. Excited to race!!


Carolina John said...

i don't train with the pack and have very few tri friends. sometimes i'll go on a group ride, but most of the time my schedule doesn't allow it. i like other people, but my family has to come first so it's tough for me to make regular commitments. i do what i can when i can, and it works for me.

Sara Cox Landolt said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sara Cox Landolt said...

Carolina John,
I totally get that. Most of my tri-training for Ironman was on my own. I trained alone to improve my mental toughness too. And, as a mom of 3, it's hard to find balance for family & training for any distance event. So, while I work out regularly, the times/choices have to be flexible. I think that's a life-stage issue for me.

So, while I like working out with friends, and they do motivate and encourage me to get out of bed, I work out on my own most of the time.

I thought about including those points here, but plan on doing a series on triathlon & the family.
Any suggestions?

Have a great weekend!

IronBob said...

Thanks for stopping by.
For last years IMAZ, I was a lone ranger, but then my training consisted of one ride per week and 2 to 3 short runs per week. I guess my 16hr 53min finish reflected that I put in just enough.
I am lucky enough to have Arnie this year (a sucker, I mean friend from my neighborhood) I talked into doing IMFL with. We still only ride once per week and run when we can, but this year the bike mileage will be increased.

Family is why I only do the Sunday morning ride (I dont want to take away from family). I have found peace in the fact that I can "get away" with one ride per week (long as it may be) and the runs at lunch. I am blessed with being able to pull this off and look forward to as many years of it as this old body will put up with.

So it is great to have the Sunday morning training partner, our small club..

Emily said...

wow some one else has heard of zumba! i've been going with my cousin and its the most fun lol.

Sara Cox Landolt said...

I love Zumba, it satisfies my need to dance!

Here's a USA Triathlon article on training buddies pros/cons!

Pros and Cons of Training Partners