Help I'm a complete novice!!

Ok so I had a mad moment, whereby I declared I would do a triathlon in Sept. I have yet to enter but I plan to do novice sprint in bath in mid sept. However I am the following: 1. Overweight. I've lost a stone, but have another 1.5 st to go. 2. Ridiculously slow at all three disciplines 3. Old (slight exaggeration, I'm 38) 4. A mum with boooobs So now slightly flapping. Will everyone be clad in Lycra? How do I swim wit my sports bra requirements?! How do I get from swimming pool to bike? What about knickers? What if I'm last by a long margin? Can I do breast stroke? Fellow athletes I need your help!!


  • As another complete novice and a guy the only advice I can give from experience os on the weight side of things. I am 6'2" and weighed about 220lbs 3 months back due to injury. Decided to do my first event, a sprint triathlon about a month before the actual event. Over that time I found out extra weight does take a toll on your knees and joints used for running in genereal so after a training session (especially running and cycling) ice your knees. Also from what I saw there were loads of serious looking people and loads of beginners too, both groups more than willing to give advice and encouragement, Oh and don't worry about finishing last. I got lost on the run and crossed the finish line before doing a U-turn and completing the rest of the run. And I got stuck in my wetsuit for 4 minutes!. And in the end what mattered was that I had completed it alive and was happy. Best of luck and register now, cause later you might wuss out!

  • I bet you're neither the biggest nor the slowest, and even if you are you'lll receive as much support as the whippets at the front. It's supposed to be fun - relax!

    What are you intending to wear? I think it's worth investing in a tri suit (or at least a pair of tri shorts) if you can but if not you won't be the only one swimming in a costume and putting bike kit on afterwards.

    I use sportsjock bra's to run in but they take too long to dry after swimming (not nice if it's a cold day!) so took advice from Less Bounce and bought a Triumph Tri Action which I wear under my tri top. If you're swimming in a costume just wear your bra underneath, put bike or tri shorts and a cycle/running top on over it when you get to T1.

    Generally you run or walk from the pool to the bike (T1). Most sprints seed people according to declared swim times so you'll probably find that if you decalred a slow swim time you'lll start quite early which means that you'll have people around you all day.

    If you think you can or you think you can't you're probably right.
  • 1.5 stone overweight?

    You'll never fit in around these parts, I'm afraid. I advise doughnuts, hot chocolate with marshmallows n whipped cream, and plenty of olympic watching from the sofa. Report for duty when you've put another 7lbs on, please.

    There's a very friendly thread called something like "Training for a shorter tri". Might be worth introducing yourself on there and finding kindred spirits.

  • Hey Heather, I will hopefully be at Bath. Was aiming for the sprint but my friend is panicking and wants to do the novice. Firstly, as mentioned only 1.5 stone overweight. You'll be fine. I am larger than I should be with LARGE boobs. I wear a sports bra (Shock Absorber) and a tri cropped top under my cossie for swimming with no problem so you should be fine. Get a cheap tri-suit (ebay) makes life much easier and you'll feel less self conscious - honest you will! You can chuck a t-shirt over it for the bike and run if you want. Breast stoke is fine, you wont be the only one trust me. Remember, probably everyone taking part is in the same position as you. If you're not aiming to win the thing then enjoy it. It is great fun... if you get a chance go and watch an event somewhere for tips or get on you tube.

  • Start fitness good website, try there more miles kit very cheap and good image
  • yep   just like what slower said , freddy made me laugh 220lb at 6'2 - try 240 at 5'9 -fecking light weight (literally)  image  heather - 38 - still younger than me and a good few others on here, a mum with boobs lol, a man with moobs is much worse

    carry on people image 

  • mathschickmathschick ✭✭✭

    Heather - you will be fine. I am more than 1.5 stone overweight, older than you and did my first tri in May.

    I wore my sports bra under a tri top (not a cropped topimage - wouldn't want to show my belly) and tri shorts. Didn't want a tri suit because of the thought of struggling if I needed the loo. I got the tri top and shorts cheap on start fitness.

    Slow swimtime means you start early and you will have finished before a lot of the faster people even start. Also, you will be surrounded by people who are probably also doing their first tri and as worried about it as you are.

    Just have fun - you will be buzzing when you finish.

    get your entry in now so you don't change your mind!

  • Heather, there's no reason that you can't do breast stroke, as its a novice sprint then there's bound to be people of all abilities taking part.

    I was in my early 40s before I did my first triathlon so your still a lot younger than I was.

    Have fun image

  • Look on the bright side it is a sprint tri.  My moment of internet madness was entering a marathon image

    As everyone says you'll be fine!  There will be loads of stick thin fast people and there will be loads of ordinary people too!  Go and enjoy.  Well look back on it and enjoy image

  • Thank you good folks!
  • Heather, I had no idea what I was doing when I started tri training, and when I did my sprint tri, I got a puncture about 3/4 of the way around the cycle with no means of repair, so I had to run about 3 miles with my bike, THEN do the 5k run. I came last, but it was so fun and a very friendly and supportive atmosphere image I'm hooked on triathlon now, LOVE IT!

    Someone pointed me in the direction of an excellent novice tri article which answered almost every question I had, but I can't remember where it was now... can anyone else help?

  • L555 It may well have been this one  that we directed you to?


  • Heather, you're a youngster, did my first tri this year at 42 and came last in the swim (with lots of supportive clapping and cheering as I spluttered home breast stroke).  It's such a supportive, inclusive sport, you'll have a fantastic time and will become hooked.  Ironman next year?

    I'll be at bath doing the Olympic distance, see you there! 

  • That's the one, Gastank!
  • Heather as per everyone else's comments not many of us are what anyone might class as athletes. We are all special in are own way, all capable of doing things you might not have imagine possible..

    Book your tri, you will love it, great support from everyone around you and you will be amazed at how good these events can be. You will discover a whole new world of sport, friendship and good will from your fellow triathalonians image best advise I can give you. Don't compare yourself to anyone around you. Enjoy your day and have fun doing it. Good luck. Horse.
  • Heather i have just found this thread and having only just signed up for what i think is the same event i had some of the same questions and worries so thanks for getting in first. 

    I swam this morning for the first time in a year so that will definatly be my worst point, i'm going to spend the next month working on technique.

    As for clothing, i went to Tri UK earlier and tried on some Tri suits, i couldn't convince myself that it was a very flattering look with all my lumps and bumps but since coming home and thinking about it i decided that who cares what i look like. The fact i'm competeing means i am trying to get rid of the extra and i think being completely covered and not needing to struggle into other shorts etc will save me time and energy which might be in short supply on the day.

    Good luck with your training and the race, and i'll be one of the ones towards the back say hi as you race past.

  • Liz, I absolutely promise you. You will not be the only one that doesn't have a physique like cat woman or spiderman in their lycra outfits. No-one will be judging you.

    Crack on and have a good time, good luck best wishes horse. image
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