I’m a bit of a gearhead. I’m not sponsored, although my triathlon team does receive some discounts here and there. It seems many of my Twitter #trichat friends are equally as interested in gear as I am, so I decided to add this page to lay out what stuff I’m currently using.
Triathlon is a pricey sport, and I have found that there are deals to be had for things on clearance or on closeout. By smart whenever you can. The gear the pros use is fine, but for most of us something safe and stable is the key. I buy a lot of crap from REI on clearance – most of my trishorts and singlets, and my training swimsuits all came from there and the deals are excellent.
Watch – Garmin 910xt
Without fail, this watch is a game-changer for me. When you really commit to using the data that this device can return to you both during and following a workout, you will work much smarter. It keeps me in the proper HR zones, keeps a watch on my cadence, tells me when I’m not gliding enough in the water, and just otherwise keeps me on track. GarminConnect is a great platform to warehouse your data, and while TrainingPeaks is the preeminent platform for multisport training, GarminConnect works just fine for most folks (and is free).
Bike – 2012 Cannondale Slice5
This bike is a real tri bike as opposed to a roadie with aerobars. I made the jump this spring and sold my way-too-big for me Trek 1.1 Alpha and added some additional monies to pull this purchase off. I am still getting used to this new beast, but it does fit me well, is a true full-carbon time trial frame, and has pretty decent components for the money. By the way, if you’re budget-conscious and still buying your own gear, try to buy a leftover bike from the previous model year. Mine was 45% off.
On board the bike, I’m using the following:
- Garmin GSC-10 Cadence & Speed Sensor
- Profile Aero Drink bottle (between the aerobars – I drink a ton and this think holds lots of oz)
- Profile Design RMC – http://www.profile-design.com/profile-design/products/hydration—nutrition/all-hydration/rmc.html
- Look pedals
- Pearl Izumi TriFlyIV tri shoes – I bike without socks and these shoes have tremendous ventilation and keep my feet comfy. In spring and fall I use a pair of KarbonSpeed toe covers that that is just enough to take the edge off.
- Giro Advantage2 Aero Helmet – I just picked one of these up lightly used on eBay, and it’s extremely comfy. I have a regular Bontrager road helmet for general warm weather training.
On the Feet – Saucony Kinvara3
While I’m wearing socks in this photo, I have run exclusively in bare feet inside these sneakers without any issues. I went to my local running store completely certain that I would be buying a pair of ASICS Noosa Tri triathlon sneakers, however after trying on those, and shoes from Brooks and Nike, these were a slam dunk. I have large (size 13) goofy-shaped feet, but these sneakers provide just enough support while being more on the way towards a minimalist shoe. I moved to a midfoot strike and a more natural running technique and while I’m nowhere close to perfect I’m getting much more satisfaction from my running than when I was a heavy-footed heel-striker. I like these so much that I’ve scarfed up pairs of K3s I’ve found online on clearance – the price has been knocked down since Saucony released the Kinvara4s.
In the water:
Vortex4 Sleeveless wetsuit.
I picked this up with the commonly had 60% discount through my tri team, but I know lots of other discounts are available with a similar % off. I’ve lost a lot of weight over the past year, and it’s likely I’ll have to move to a different size sometime soon. I might go with sleeves the next time around, but this thing gives me speed and buoyancy I didn’t think was possible.
In the pool, I use TYR Crossblade fins and Speedo Contoured paddles.
I was a TYR Nest Pro guy, but I was finding that longer sessions were causing discomfort on my nose bridge. Any goggle will do for a short 20 minute session, but if there’s a slight pinch it will bother you eventually. I found the AquaSphere Kayanne on clearance at AllAmericanSwim.com and grabbed a pair on a lark, and just ordered two more pairs (discontinued color). For my goofy-shaped mug, these are awesome and comfy.
I know a lot of folks are really picky about what hydration and on-course nutrition they can use, and given longer races and the stresses we put our body through, this becomes a very individual decision.
Nutrition begins with Energybits, for me. I use this as a pre-workout fuel, as well as for continual energy within long races or workout segments. These things are pure gold for me, and while I was once a bit skeptical, I’m a true believer now.
I am also an Energybits Ambassador now. Reach out to me if you’d like some free samples to try out. You can also order online using the discount code “PersonalReboot” for 20% off the price, and this discount applies to all of their products. If you’re considering giving them a try, read my review here.
I like Nuun hydration a lot, especially when I travel! It’s so easy to pack my FuelBelt, bottle, and a canister of Nuun tablets and not worry about powder. G2 and Blox (normally found in GNC) is a good combo of some BCAAs and electrolytes. I’ve also messed around with the Herbalife 24 line, but I find the “mouthfeel” of the stuff more like milk, and in the midst of a workout that gets a little gross.