June 11, 2019
Yiannis Christodoulou, Team GB International aquathlete and National Aquathlon Age Group Champion in 2019 here blogs about how he started taking part in Aquathlon in 2012, and how you can get involved too.
When I first started swimming and running back in 2012, I didn’t know about Aquathlon’s. So if you’re like me and you like running and swimming you are probably thinking of doing an Aquathlon so here is my advice and tips. An Aquathlon is a swim followed by run and the distances do vary depending if they are pool swims or outdoors. A standard outdoor Aquathlon is 750m lake sea swim followed by a 5k run.
My first tip is deciding what distance you want to do and whether it is an indoor/outdoor swim and then train for it. If it’s outdoor I would advise to train at least a couple times in open water before you do a race.
Next up what kit do you need? This depends again if the swim is outdoors or not. You will need the following kit:
- Swim Goggles
- Tri suit/swim wear
- Running trainers
- Race belt
Swim goggles needed as you will be swimming front crawl in races. Tri suit/swim wear, it would be good to invest in a tri suit and it’s much quicker as you won’t lose time in transition getting changed. However you can use swim wear like jammers & swim shorts etc. The only problem with these is that you will need to put a running top on in transition, which is tricky with you being wet. If you want to race regularly and in open water a wetsuit is a must. I would recommend starting out with an entry level wetsuit. You will be quicker with a wetsuit, but if you’re not a confident swimmer than a wetsuit is a must as it also provides you a bit of safety outdoors. Trainers, of course you need them to run with, lastly a race belt, which is easy to use. These bits will get you started for your first race.
Pool races are different to outdoor swims, because most of the time the pool races you go one after the other and is not a mass start. If you are racing outdoors, keep calm and stay away from the main group. Remember it’s about you and nobody else, you are racing yourself, no one is judging you.
I have a race check list because the more you get into it, the more items you take with you. This is important so that you don’t forget something at a race. I would recommend having a go to list and checking you have everything.
Transition training; is very important to go through in your head what you are going to do after the swim. Before the race you lay your Items in transition in a way you can get to them easy. Remember where you are in transition too & practice taking wetsuit off.
When you come out the water you might feel a bit dizzy before the run, this is normal for a few minutes. Then you head off to transition & put your trainers on and running belt on and then your off on the run. I normally put some baby powder in my shoes so my feet dry up quickly.
Castle Triathlon Series has added sprint and standard Aquathlons to all of its multisport festivals in 2019. Find out more here.