Your first triathlon: Tips from Brendan Sexton

Olympian Brendan Sexton shares some helpful advice for your first triathlon.

What’s the number one thing people should keep in mind when setting out to complete their first triathlon?

Acknowledge that there’s a process that will take time. Set small goals that lead towards a major aim and enjoy the processes involved in achieving those goals.

If possible, find a group of training buddies with similar goals and abilities to your own. It’s also great to train with people who are more advanced so you can gain perspective and added motivation to improve. Ensure your group makes the process of improving enjoyable, and be sure to celebrate your collective achievements.

Should you focus on your weak leg or your stronger leg when training?

At an elite level, I’m constantly trying to improve all three legs of the triathlon. I believe this should be the aim at any level. Triathlon is a three-discipline sport – ideally all three legs would be as strong as each other and a triathlon is only as strong as its weakest leg!

That said, a focus on weaker legs should see greater overall improvement. I often find someone’s weakest leg is his or her least liked in training (the case with me anyway), so a change of approach towards the training could see more enjoyment and therefore improved performance.

“It’s great to train with people who are more advanced so you can gain perspective and added motivation to improve.” 

What level of fitness do you need to complete a sprint distance triathlon?

Being an endurance event lasting up to two hours, a sprint triathlon will need some degree of preparation. In training, you should practise separately swimming a non-stop 750m, riding 20km without a break and running 5km. If you’re able to complete the disciplines alone without difficulty, the combined effort is attainable.

What is the most important training gear that people need?

Apart from the obligatory pool, bike and running shoes, the most important equipment is the right clothing. Depending on climate, conditions and type of training, what you’re wearing can make all the difference too. Training and race apparel should be well fitting, engineered from good fabrics, offer insulation in cooler weather and breathability when it’s hot.  In 2XU I can approach my training, racing and recovery with the confidence I require to perform at my best.

vImage: Jaimi Chisolm

Recommended reading - Issue Sixteen Winter 2016

Recipes

10 ways to enjoy sweet potato

Bursting with flavour and vitamin goodness, sweet potato is a comforting veggie staple.

Read more
Experts

8 things you should know about preventing disease

How can you lower your risk of common health conditions?

Read more
Recipes

Roasted guinea fowl, brussels sprouts, baby beets and quince recipe

A deliciously juicy dish, full of flavour and colourful veggies.

Read more
Community

How your blood can change lives

Blood is a precious resource. Here's why we should all consider donating to people in need.

Read more
Experts

10 ways to reach your running goals

Go the distance and seamlessly achieve your running goals – while protecting your body from injury.

Read more
In Brief

CareComplete: Support for chronic health conditions

How Medibank helps members with chronic health conditions take positive steps forward every day.

Read more
Travel

The best bike-friendly cities

Discover the most bike-friendly cities of the world.

Read more
Community

The healthy food gap

There is not just a healthcare gap in Indigenous communities, but a healthy food gap too.

Read more
Lifestyle

The history of the stethoscope

Brilliant ideas often spring from unlikely places, like the playful history of the stethoscope

Read more
Experts

Caring for braces

Braces will be your best friend (once they’re off your teeth). Here’s a few tips for the meantime.

Read more
Community

Onsen Ma: Soaking and shiatsu

Healing steam from the Japanese mountains settles in the Melbourne laneways Onsen Ma.

Read more
Experts

Eating for a healthy heart

Make heart-friendly food choices for a healthy heart by following these simple guidelines.

Read more
Recipes

Lamb shank and vegetable soup recipe

Need a new soup recipe? This hearty lamb soup beckons with bursts of fresh vegies.

Read more
Lifestyle

Winter bike riding tips

Tour De France winner Cadel Evans tells you how to keep bike riding through the winter months.

Read more
Recipes

Spicy pumpkin and lentil soup recipe

Spice up your soup ideas this winter with a pumpkin and lentil soup inspired by Indian flavours.

Read more
Experts

What pro athletes really eat

Learn why you don't need to make drastic life changes to eat a healthy, balanced diet.

Read more
Experts

Laser eye surgery alternatives

Laser surgery not an option? Here are some alternatives.

Read more
Recipes

Corn fritters with tangy tomato salsa recipe

These cajun-flavoured corn fritters with tomato salsa will freshen up your weeknight routine.

Read more
Lifestyle

Healthy school lunchbox ideas

Healthy kids are happy kids with this innovative school lunch ideas.

Read more
Experts

A guide to good guts

Protecting your gut bacteria with healthy food is vital to overall health.

Read more
Experts

What are macronutrients?

So what exactly are macronutrients? We've got the lowdown.

Read more
Lifestyle

7 easy ways to get active in winter

Take a look at a list of activities to keep your heart racing during the dreary winter months

Read more
Recipes

Curried cauliflower salad recipe

A curried cauliflower salad recipe for something a little fancy.

Read more
Recipes

Lentil soup recipe

Lentil-based dishes like this red lentil soup are not only delicious but are packed with goodness.

Read more
Experts

The best immunity-boosting foods

Want to avoid the dreaded flu this winter? Try these immunity-boosters to strengthen your defenses.

Read more
Recipes

Chicken and white bean casserole recipe

Try this fresh and protein-packed chicken and white bean casserole with pasta or extra vegies.

Read more
Experts

10 tips for diabetes-friendly food

Top ten food tips to manage or prevent diabetes and enjoy a healthy life.

Read more
Community

Hit 100: Diabetes-friendly eating made easy

Hit 100 takes the frustration out of diabetes-friendly eating for a happier, healthier life.

Read more
Recipes

Pea and ham soup recipe

Try this take on a classic soup by seasoning with Himalayan pink salt.

Read more
Experts

10 things you need to know about the body

Our bodies are complex, mysterious, miraculous things. Dr Bridie O'Donnell tells us how they tick.

Read more
Lifestyle

Your quick-start guide to running training

Whether you're gearing up for a marathon or your first 5 km, prepare your mind, body and wardrobe.

Read more
Experts

How to build mental resilience

Life has a habit of testing our limits - mental resilience is your chance to bounce back.

Read more
Experts

Exercise for mental health treatment

Anxiety and depression can be exhausting, but exercise is one fantastic way of fighting back.

Read more

For full functionality of this site it is necessary to enable JavaScript. Here are instructions on how to enable JavaScript in your web browser.