For Davey and I, having an awesome triathlon season consists of training effectively to improve our race times, making sure we don’t skip our strength training workouts, smiling during the race to ensure that we have great race photos, having fun and staying injury free.
Having 3 sports to train for can add a lot of variety to your fitness routine, but it can also add a lot more opportunities for injury. Here are 4 tips from the awesome team at Integrative Spine and Sports Physical Therapy, that will help keep you injury free and out of physical therapy this season.
* * *
It’s no secret that injuries can derail your training, especially when training for a strenuous race such as a triathlon. Thankfully, there are 4 quick and easy tips that, when implemented, can drastically decrease your changes of getting injured.
Warding off unwanted injuries will make sure that you are ready to hit the course injury free come tri season.
Get On a Solid Stretching Routine
Stretching is one of the most important parts of training for a triathlon and is often one area that takes a backseat to traditional training. Getting on a stretching routine or investing in a weekly yoga class will ensure that your muscles are recovered and ready for the next workout.
Benefits of stretching are increased circulation, flexibility, strong range of motion, and less knee and back pain. Training for a triathlon can be strenuous. Making sure that you set aside designated time to stretch daily increases blood flow to your muscles and gets rid of waste in your muscle tissue. Improved circulation from active stretching can decrease your recovery time, allowing you to train more and at a higher intensity.
ICE ICE Baby
Joking aside, it is crucial that you ice your legs daily. Most athletes are blown away to know that icing is not just for after long or high intensity workouts, but should be used preventatively to stay away from sore muscles and pains.
A recent article on medicinenet.com states, “The swelling and much of the inflammation that follows an injury is largely due to the leakage of blood from the ruptured capillaries. Therefore, cold applications with ice can help by causing the blood vessels to constrict (clamp down). This constriction of the blood vessels prevents further leakage of blood and serum and minimizes swelling and pain.”
Making the proper choice on your triathlon gear seems like an obvious. (Check out TwoTri’s beginner swim, bike and run gear guides) What most don’t realize is that researching the best choice for your individual foot shape and body type can make all the difference come race day. Most lean towards highly popular brands or sale racks, but the research shows that quality and individualized gear can enhance overall performance.
Starting with getting the basics will make the transition to quality much easier. Swimsuit, goggles, swim cap, helmet, and running shoes are the gear that is most frequently used items in triathlon training. An example is running shoes. Investing in quality running shoes avoids blisters, and also common over pronation & supination issues. Here are 4 tips to help you find the perfect pair of sneakers.
Set Aside Scheduled Time
Typical beginner triathletes need to set aside 5-8 hours per week for training. What triathletes oftentimes do not realize is that getting in those hours can be easier said than done. Creating a schedule of meals, workouts, and time frames, can ease the stress of a busy workout calendar. Getting in stretching, icing, warm-up, cross training, and cool down in addition to your regular scheduled workout can be tough on the clock.
Oftentimes people who are rushed for their workouts, do not stretch (or recover) properly, while also pushing themselves too much in order to shave off 5-10 minutes. This just adds to potential injuries and can be easily avoided with a strong workout schedule.