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How to Stay Motivated for Triathlon Training and Racing

with Professional Triathlete Radka Kahlefeldt

Like anyone else, there are times when I just don’t feel like training. I have to remind myself what it feels like to be sick or injured. What if I could not hop on my bike or get out for a run or swim? How would I feel then?

So, if you are feeling bored with your routine, tired or busy with work, tell yourself to be happy you are healthy and thankful you have the ability to do the sport you love. There are so many people in the world who do not have the same privilege.

Here are a few tips for improving your motivation for training:

  1. Sign up for a race BEFORE you begin training. I love racing, so that is my main motivation for training. Although you may want to get into good shape before you sign up for a race, you are also more likely to quit training without the commitment or the deadline. So, sign up for a race with your friends. This will keep you motivated!
  2. Train with a friend. Sometimes, it can help you to stay motivated when you have another person to train with. Let’s say on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday you commit to a longer group ride with friends. The commitment with others will make it harder to back out of training. Not only will can you and your friends challenge and push each other, but it is actually fun!
  3. Reward yourself. I like to reward myself with some little treats after long rides. What do you enjoy most? Coffee? Ice Cream? Chocolate? Beer? Deprive yourself of these things unless you do some training that day. Whenever you do not feel like going for a bike ride or run, remember how good that cake or ice cold beer will taste afterward! Personally, I like to stop at a coffee shop on rides longer than 3 hours. It keeps me motivated (and caffeinated)!
  4. Go shopping. If you have hit a wall in your training, consider buying some new equipment! It can be something small like a new sports bra or socks, or a larger item that you have been meaning to upgrade like new cycling shorts, a jersey or shoes. New gear can really make you look forward for your next swim, bike or run!
  5. Early morning motivation. What helps me to get up early in the morning for a bike ride? I love breakfast. Thinking about that bowl of granola and good coffee helps me get out of bed without hitting the “snooze” button. And, as a bonus, I have another breakfast after the bike ride! Love it!
  6. Change of scenery. Once in a while, change the environment of your training. Try out a new swimming pool or swim open water. Discover a new bike loop by joining a group ride at your local bike shop. Or, take your sport gear with you for your holiday and do some training in a new place! Biking is one of the best ways to discover a new city (you might not even realize you are still training).

How do you stay motivated? Share your tips with us by tagging #TryATri and #LivBeyond in social media.