Maybe it’s time to try a flying dismount
By Anton Macasieb
Earlier we covered some tips and tricks to take with you into T1, and now we have a few words of advice to get you through T2. By the time you finish reading this article, you should be a veritable expert of the transition area.
Practice Brick Workouts
The feeling of running right off the bike can take some getting used to. Those “jelly legs” come from muscle fatigue after the bike leg, working with other muscle groups used for the run that are still fresh and unused. Regular brick workouts can help condition your muscles.
It’s Time to Fly
A well-executed flying dismount is simply put, suave. It’s a sign of an experienced triathlete that’s put some effort into every aspect of his triathlon skills. Get enough practice before giving it a shot on race day. I suggest trying it out over a soft surface, or on a stationary bike the first few times around. Here’s our favorite video showing how to dismount:
Don’t Stop to Eat or Change
Definitely one of the biggest time sinks in transition. Why eat at transition when you can eat while you’re running? Grab your gels with you as you run out of transition or pack them in your trisuit pockets and eat them on-the-go. Changing should be out of the question as well. As much as possible, find the most comfortable outfit you can use from gun start until you cross the finish line. Trisuits can be pricey, but they are well worth the investment.
Fast Shoes, Faster Transition
The cheapest and most effective tweak you can do is to make your shoes easy to slip into. This means changing your ordinary laces to speed laces that stretch when you wear your shoes. If possible, roll your socks inside so you can get your feet into both your socks and shoes in one swoop. A bit of talcum powder in the opening and your socks are helpful as well. Thinking of getting a new pair of shoes? Consider a sock-less triathlon shoe, but try them out first because it doesn’t work for everyone.
It’s smart to get into the habit of taking off the helmet last. Stricter races have penalties for removing your helmet while still in contact with the bike, so don’t take the chance. And remember to turn that bib around to the front or your side
Everything in Order
You arrive back into transition and you see an example of orderliness that will be the envy of your neighbors. In front should be the essentials: a cap, your socks, running shoes, and any hydration or nutrition you plan to take with you. Set up everything nice and tidy over a towel that’s easy to spot from miles away. Keep a well organized transition area and your tired, distracted head will thank you on race day.
Helmet Last, Bib Forward
It’s smart to get into the habit of taking off the helmet last. Stricter races have penalties for removing your helmet while still in contact with the bike, so don’t take the chance. And remember to turn that bib around to the front or your side. How else are the photographers going to be able to find your photos for you?