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How to Train for a Triathlon

05/06/15

Those who signed up for Panasonic NYC Tri back in winter are now staring down the barrell of the proverbial gun. With just a month until the June 19th event, ambitious New Yorkers are in the last stretch of training for a race that will take them swimming the waters of the Hudson, biking along the West Side highway, and--wet, sweaty, and a little more than tired--running through Central Park. Finishing the Tri is the marker of a true and dedicated athlete, not to mention a New Yorker.

How to break across that finish line? Training. Lots and lots of training. Plus some gear. Here’s our shortlist of what you’ll need for your next triathlon.

CLOTHING

Before you even thinking of taking to land and sea in the name of superior athleticism, you must make sure you have the right gear for the task. For the swim, you’ll need a suit and goggles (especially if you’ll be taking a dip in the Hudson during the NYC Tri). If you don’t already have a bike, get one. You’ll also need a good pair of cycling shorts for those chafe-inducing rides. And let’s not forget about a good pair of running shoes. While there is plenty of gear out there specifically designed for the rigors of a tri on the day of, training can be accomplished in gear you use in your regular workout routines, like pieces from our ISAORA Sportswear collection.

TIME

Triathlons are hard on your body. To reduce the likelihood of beating yourself to a living pulp when the day of the big race arrives, give yourself about 12 weeks to warm your body up, training five days a week and working in small increments.

WORKOUTS

Workouts for triathlons are meant to hone endurance, which means short sessions of 30 to 45 minutes per workout day plus an additional couple of longer hauls when you can spare the time. Running and biking can easily be put on the same time table and easily done at the gym. If you know what’s good for you, you’ll push yourself to your max a few times on the bike and then hop on the treadmill to prepare yourself of that rubber-legged feeling that’ll surely hit you on the day of the race.

As for swimming, freestyling is your best option in open water and the skill can be cultivated in the pool and at the gym with drills and exercises. Out of the water, imitating arm strokes with resistance bands can mimic the burden of plowing through water. In the pool, you’ll want to isolate muscle groups--from holding a kickboard to work on leg strength to one-arm strokes to perfect the stroke of each arm--to ensure they perform when the moment of judgement arrives.

TAKE A BREAK

Slow and steady wins the race… and the training program.

SUIT UP AND GO

Avoid excuses and procrastination. Triathlons are one those enduring symbols of delayed gratification, where all your hard work will pay off once you finish the race. With commitment and patience, you’ll get there.

Think you can train in time for the NYC Tri? Read this article from Runner's World on their 6-week tri crash course.