DCT is almost here. Niamh Fitzpatrick helps one final athlete in need.

August 25, 2017 Leave your thoughts Posted under

I used to play football, but gave that up a few years ago because I was getting too old. Now I do triathlons to keep fit, but I don’t take it that seriously. I loved team sports and triathlon doesn’t give me quite the same buzz, though I do enjoy it. I’d like to take triathlon more seriously because I feel I’m holding myself by having such a laid-back attitude to it – any tips? – Marty

Marty – it sounds to me that you have met your initial goal from taking up triathlons, which is keeping fit. If that’s all you remain focused on, then that’s fine. Just keep doing what you’re doing.

However, it seems to me as though you’d like to move on from simply keeping fit to something different. You say your laid-back attitude is holding you back – what is it holding you back from? From improving? From winning? If so, then your initial goal has changed as it has been met and maybe it’s time to start resetting your goals and review the reasons you’re doing what you’re doing. You’ve taken up triathlons, you’ve achieved a good level of fitness and now you want to take it to another level. That’s what I hear from your question.

I’m not saying that you have to decide that you want to win a race or to finish on the podium in your age group, but perhaps look at one element of the race, your swim, cycle or your run and set some targets around those. Do you want to achieve a personal best on the run, do you want to finish the cycle quicker than you have before? If you do, set these are your own manageable targets and work towards them. Setting a new target, working towards it and achieving it can help you get a new buzz from triathlon, a different buzz than you got from football perhaps but not a lesser buzz.

It sounds to me like you have the resources in terms of training to know how to work towards and achieve these goals, but if you don’t then you can consult with an experienced triathlete, coach or join a club, if you haven’t already. Make sure that the goals are achievable – if you set yourself a target that isn’t within reach you can become frustrated. Smaller targets that you can achieve will give you a buzz and then you can move onto the next target.