General Discussion Triathlon Talk » Sprint or Olympic Distance Rss Feed  
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2013-03-02 10:36 PM

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Subject: Sprint or Olympic Distance

First Triathlon Results (indoor Mini Sprint) - 400m Swim - 9:13 (14/32), 3 Mile Bike - 12:53 (2nd overall), 2 Mile Run - 16:17 (17/32). Totals - 38:23 - 12th overall !!! 

For my first event of this kind I was pretty happy. My goal was to be under 40 minutes. 

My first outdoor Triathlon is June 1st and I have to decide to Register for the Sprint or the Olympic.  I have plenty of time to train for the extra distance.  I can complete the bike and the run without issues but the swim is pretty long, but I can do it.  Never swam in a wet suit YET!  

In it for the fitness not the podium, but still enjoy being competitive for my age group. (43)

Should I go for the Olympic or stick to the Sprint for the 1st Full Event???????

First Timer advise Please!!





Thanks and God Bless
Todd



Edited by Toddpa 2013-03-02 10:38 PM


2013-03-02 10:43 PM
in reply to: #4643899

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Subject: RE: Sprint or Olympic Distance

For a first race its always safe to just say "do the sprint". Would you feel any more accomplished by doing the Olympic distance and skipping the sprint?

Sprints are just as awesome to cross that finish line, especially if you know you pushed your body to its limits on those last few hundred meters getting to the finish line! And to answer "which would you enjoy more", gauge where your fitness is. A 6 mile run can be an excruciating experience if you burn out too early! Won't tell you what to pick because it sounds like the water doesn't scare you that bad, and you'd likely finish the Olympic. Just throwing some ideas for you to pick yourself.

2013-03-02 10:48 PM
in reply to: #4643899

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Subject: RE: Sprint or Olympic Distance

how good is your swim ?  you jump from 400m to a 750m (Sprint) or 1.5KM (Oly)

Oly bike is 40KM and Run 10KM, vs 20KM / 5KM for Sprint.

If you feel up for the Oly challenge, go for it...you'd be doing yourself a favor to get a training plan for this.

2013-03-02 10:55 PM
in reply to: #4643899

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Subject: RE: Sprint or Olympic Distance
If you are confident about the swim portion I'd say do the Olympic, particularly since you have the time to build up to it.  I enjoy sprints, where I am much more competitive than Olys due to my poor swim not hurting me as much, but the sprints almost feel like they're over before they started.  An Oly is certainly not the same as a HIM or IM but it feels more like an endurance event.  Plus in my mind you get more race for your money since in all the races I've done the price is the same for an Oly as a sprint.

Edited by mjohnson30 2013-03-02 10:57 PM
2013-03-02 10:56 PM
in reply to: #4643899

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Subject: RE: Sprint or Olympic Distance

I'd say go for the Olympic, though sprints are good races too.  IMHO, do the extra training and give the Oly a shot.  I like the Oly distance - short enough to get it done in +/- 3 hrs, but long enough that it's also about endurance and pacing, not just speed.  It's a good distance.  Full disclaimer - my first race was an Oly distance race, so perhaps I'm a bit biased.  PM me if you have any specific questions.  

At the end of the day, you can't go wrong with either choice.  Your fitness/health will be better with either race.

Good luck.

2013-03-03 10:39 AM
in reply to: #4643899

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Subject: RE: Sprint or Olympic Distance

My Swim is my weakest point, as a lot of others, but I just started swimming last November a few days a week.  I have never swam in a wetsuit (but getting one soon).  I started swimming with a pull buoy because I couldn't float.  I can finish a pool 400 meter pretty well.  I feel I would do better in open water because I hate the walls, they throw off your rhythm.  I live 3 Miles from a Big lake so looking forward to swim in open water with my wife in the Kayak.  I have swam with a pull buoy a full nonstop mile in the pool.  But I have a lot of work to do on my swim.  My bike is good but not real fast, and my run is slow and steady.  

My desire is endurance not speed, but if speed with help me with my endurance that is what I need to do.  

I do plan on doing a Olympic Tri in September, and want to do a Half Marathon by the end of the year.

Are my goals too big or typical for my Age(43) and experience (none)

 

Thanks All

Todd



2013-03-03 11:59 AM
in reply to: #4643899

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Subject: RE: Sprint or Olympic Distance
If your goal is endurance I would say that the Olympic is your choice.  Whether you will be ready for those distance in 3 months depends on your current fitness level which only you can say for sure.  Going from 400M in the pool to 1500M in OW is a signficant jump but it sounds like you can get to that with sufficent time in the water.  Even if you plan not to kill it speed-wise on the bike, make sure you train a decent amount of time there.  A 10K run is doable but wouldn't be much fun if your legs are trashed from the bike.
2013-03-03 12:06 PM
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Subject: RE: Sprint or Olympic Distance
I'd go out and do an OWS first and then decide.  You would be among the minority that would find an OWS easier than swimming in a pool.  The scrum start of an OWS is something that you will not have experienced in a pool and I have yet to see a lake with a line pained on the bottom.
2013-03-03 12:16 PM
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Subject: RE: Sprint or Olympic Distance

You can do whatever you feel comfortable with for sure, for me I would be comfortable doing a progressive approach, starting with a sprint tri next,750 swim 20k bike 5K run, then if that went good, I would do a regular tri, 750M swim,30k Bike, 7.5K run maybe a couple of these, then by mid to late season I would shoot for the Olympic with 1500M swim, 40K bike, 10K run, and finish off my first year with the oly or maybe even 2, but that's just how I would approach it bearing in mind that I have a fairly injury prone history especially when it comes to running. I could easily do an oly right now but I haven't because while I know I could finish it, I don't think I could give it the RACE effort it deserves YET.

I also think that to me this would give a great sence of accomplishment for the entire year to progress thru  from a give it a tri to an Oly or 2 in the first year of doing tri's.



Edited by RRH_88 2013-03-03 12:27 PM
2013-03-06 7:09 PM
in reply to: #4643899

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Subject: RE: Sprint or Olympic Distance

I think I am going to take the progressive approach given by most and RRH_88.  I think this is the wisest approach.  I believe I could finish an Olympic but I don't want to be just a finisher, I want to finish strong and be able to continue to train without being dead for a prolonged time.

Looking forward to June

Thanks all

Todd

2013-03-06 10:18 PM
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Subject: RE: Sprint or Olympic Distance
Toddpa - 2013-03-03 10:39 AM

My Swim is my weakest point. . . I feel I would do better in open water because I hate the walls, they throw off your rhythm.  

Nothing prepares you for your first open water race.  Dark water, mass of people, rush of adrenaline, choppy water. . . its a feeling you will not be prepared for.  Sure, you can minimize it by practicing in open water, but its just not the same.  If you struggle, and you should expect that you will, its a whole lot better knowing you only have to get through 500 meters and not 1500 meters.   I think you'll have a better experience doing the sprint first but a lot of us, including myself, started at the Olympic distance.  



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General Discussion Triathlon Talk » Sprint or Olympic Distance Rss Feed