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Liz Richards Face

21st June 2016

Top ten tips: Researcher triathlete

Just six years after starting the sport, university researcher Liz Richardson is now the European age group champion. These are her top ten training tips…

  • 1. Consistency in training. You’ll get faster quicker if you make a plan and stick to it and also find it easier to keep up the training once you can get into a routine.
  • 2. Train with others. It’s not always possible to train with friends or club mates, but if you can it is well worth it. Firstly, it helps you drag yourself out of bed at 5am knowing that there’ll be a social camaraderie aspect to the session, and secondly it really helps you to push yourself, knowing you’re all suffering together!
  • 3. Take recovery seriously. The down time is when our bodies get stronger. In particular, make sure you get enough sleep and listen to your body.
  • 4. Time management. Training takes up a lot of time so use your spare time wisely. For example, I make meals in bulk at the weekend so I don’t have to cook during the week. It’s also good if you can get in a bit of training while commuting.
  • 5. Be organized. There’s a lot of kit involved in a triathlon, so it’s helpful to make a list of the things you need to remember to take (and do), or use a checklist online. I use http://triathlon.racechecklist.com
  • 6. Don’t do anything new in the race. Practice everything in training. Nutrition is a key thing to practice, particularly for longer races.
  • 7. Recce the race route if possible. Knowledge is power! If you can’t cycle the route then driving it will be fine.
  • 8. Comfort. In longer races it’s worth checking the forecast and thinking about how you’ll feel after transitioning onto the bike when wet. Putting on an extra layer (e.g., gilet or arm warmers) may take a few seconds but you could save time because you’ll be more comfortable. I’ve suffered unnecessarily by not following this advice!
  • 9. Remember to have a life outside of triathlon. It can get addictive.
  • 10. Remember that you’re doing this for fun. Enjoy your training and racing.