When stretched, don’t forget the basics…

In my previous life in the RAF there was a cliché poster reminding us that when stretched not to forget the basics. It occurred to me after sending this email to one of my athletes that racing is very much the same. It’s too easy to arrive at the start line after the roller coaster of expos, bike racking, pasta parties without having thought about the basics that can play a big part in a successful race outcome.

The athlete in question raced his first ‘IM distance’ tri in a little over 10hrs, he certainly got it right.

Well, the time is almost upon us…

Here we are, all those miserable hours in the winter rain, the sweat all over the garage floor, getting up early to fit sessions in when you’d rather have been still in bed…well here’s your time to get the result you deserve for your sacrifices. You’re in great shape, the met forecast looks good so go for it.

Here are a few thoughts for you for race day, nothing we haven’t already talked about over the past few months but worth another mention.

Transition and pre-race

Keep a bottle of electrolyte drink to hand in the hours between bike racking and the gun going off, dehydration will seriously change your result for the worse.

Once you have racked your bike try to visualise the route between the swim exit and the rack position, it won’t be the same as the route you took to deposit your bike/kit. Do the same for T2 route as well.  Try to stay off your feet as much as possible after bike racking and registration, save that energy for the race.

Get to the swim in time to do some muscle warm up movements and have a last look at the swim course route and confirm any visible sighting points. Don’t forget to Bodyglide..


Try to get on some feet early, the first 400m will be madness, accept that and go with it, sight regularly.


Set a recurring alarm on your Garmin/watch to beep every 15 mins. Every time it beeps consider taking a sip of drink and every 2nd beep take some fuel onboard. Take a gel within the last 20mins of the bike course, it will get you through the first section of the run while you are settling into a pace routine.


We’ve put a strategy together, stick with it for the first 4x5k at least, if you are feeling good at that stage then go with what feels right. (we’d previously talked about mentally breaking the run down into a number of 5k chunks, it seems more achievable at the end of a long day). 

Have a great race, l know your race number and will be tracking you online from afar, very best of luck.


Verinesvelo Coaching Services

A little more about Chris Tasker

Chris is the man behind VerinesVelo Coaching, a British Cycling qualified Coach, UK Athletics Run Coach, ASA Swimming Teacher and coach, NLP Practitioner, keen cyclist and long distance triathlete. Chris has competed as a cyclist for over 30 years in most disciplines within the sport including Time-Trials, Cross Country mountain biking, Road Racing and Criteriums. Chris also competes as a Long Distance triathlete, he is also a 3 time finisher at Ironman Lanzarote, as well as many other races. He's currently training for a number of ultra marathons in 2018

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