Monday, September 2, 2013

Planning Next Year’s Races

I still have two more races in my current season, but truth be told, it’s really not too early to think about what I want to do next year.

Of course, it is early so picking an actual event won’t happen for a while yet. Instead, I’m starting to look at the criteria for picking an event. So far, it’s working out like this:


The harsh truth is that I over-registered this year with eight races over a five month period. I should have known better, but now I know for sure. There is such a thing as too many races.

Next year, at most, I’ll do one a month and probably more like every six months. What’s more, events will need to be at least three weeks apart and preferably more. I’ve found I don’t like the pressure and anxiety that an upcoming event creates.


This is not much of a change, but I do plan on sticking with races that are known for being well-run. That probably means reading the race reports on a lot of other blogs and tuning in to the various comment boards on sites like Trifuel and Beginner Triathlete. Quality also means avoiding event companies with a history of cancelling events.

New Experiences

It’s great for race strategy to know the course really well. I think that was a big part of what helped me reach the podium in Greeley in 2012. However, it’s also a lot of fun to see a place for the first time. No doubt depending on scheduling and cost, I may have a repeat, but I’m going to favor events that I have not done before.

Environmental Factors

These are things such as venue, historical weather, course, and ease of access from my home. I don’t mean to say that I am not willing to travel to reach one or two races, but all else being equal; I’d lean toward the local race.

Taking My Time

Part of why I was over-registered this year is because I didn’t take enough time to put a particular race into the perspective of my whole season. While not every race can be an ‘A’ race they don’t all have to be a ‘C’ either.

Part of this consideration may also be impacted by whether or not I decide to hire a coach. I’m still toying with that. That decision (probably a good topic for a future post) will be determined by exactly what I want—and can reasonably expect—from being coached.

These criteria should be helpful to making a more logical, rationale decision. That said, I don’t want to totally dismiss the notion of “hey, that looks like fun.” After all, having fun is supposed to be part of being a triathlete. Right?

Thanks for reading!

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