A triathlon, you might want to think twice. Once you start swimming, cycling and running, stopping is no longer an option. Just ask any triathlete. If a runner’s high was already addictive, then a triathlon will take you to a whole new level. After you’ve paid some serious dues, of course, because a triathlon is the pinnacle of sporting suffering. Let that be clear. But if you can see the beauty in it, nothing else comes close. Certainly not when the setting for all that agony is Knokke-Heist and environs. An extra bonus that the Zwin Triathlon is proud to offer. And rightly so, as the landscape in which the race takes place is quite unique. So it’s no wonder that Compagnie Het Zoute – with deep roots in Knokke – has lent its name to this sporting event as sponsor. The Zwin Triathlon ticks all the boxes for the best that Knokke has to offer: an exceptional seaside resort that constantly strikes just the right balance between nature, recreation and culture.
10 TIPS FOR BEGINNING TRIATHLETES
1. TRAIN AS A GROUP
Join swimming, cycling and running groups that are just above your level. Feeling the burn together with others is a bit more fun than going it alone and it will motivate you when your training commitment is wavering.
2. PRACTICE TAKING U-TURNS AND CURVES ON YOUR BIKE
The cycling route of a triathlon often includes sharp turns. With quite a few kilometres behind you, you may find your mind getting a little less sharp, so you’ll have to rely on automatic reflexes.
3. TRAIN FOR SWIMMING IN OPEN WATER
It’s quite unlike swimming in a pool. The water is colder, visibility is poorer, and you have to keep a straight line. You can get by without this kind of training, but it absolutely helps.
4. TRY OUT YOUR SPORTS NUTRITION PRODUCTS IN ADVANCE
Energy gels are not a must, but if you want to avoid a dip while running, they will come in handy. Test your gel for taste, digestibility and hydration during your running training.
5. PLAN YOUR LAST VISIT TO THE TOILET BEFORE YOU PUT ON YOUR WETSUIT
Once it’s on, you don’t want to have to struggle to get it off again. Or at least not before you’ve put that kilometre swim behind you.
6. DON’T FORGET! THE ZIPPER ON YOUR WETSUIT IS AT THE BACK
After swimming, there’s a chance that you will be a bit disoriented when you get out of the water. So, remember that your zipper is at the back and that you may have to pull on a cord to free yourself from your wetsuit.
7. MARK YOUR BIKE
Finding your bike among 1100 other bikes is a challenge. Place a colourful towel on your handlebars or saddle. This way, you will recognise it faster and you’ll save yourself an extra 30 seconds in the transition zone.
8. ‘TAKE IT EASY ON THE BIKE’
Advice that many triathletes have probably heard from their supporters during the second discipline in the race. Although it is tempting to go for it, dosing your energy is crucial in this phase.
9. LEGS LIKE JELLY DURING THE RUN? THAT’S PERFECTLY NORMAL
Give your lower legs time to adjust to the transition from the bike to the road and take it a bit easier for the first few kilometres.
10. AND HAVE FUN!
The scenery of the Zwin Triathlon is unlike any other. Swimming in the Damse Vaart, cycling along the borders of the Zwin and running on a boardwalk packed with supporters.
THE 2019 ZWIN TRIATHLON IN FIGURES
The Zwin Triathlon is an international ¼ TRIATHLON. What’s on the menu?
1 KM SWIMMING,
45 KM CYCLING AND
10 KM RUNNING
The Zwin Triathlon is traditionally held on the 1st Wednesday of September. In 2019, this will be on the 4TH OF SEPTEMBER.
It will be the 21ST EDITION of the race
The triathletes will start in Sluis and finish on the beach at Knokke-Heist
A MAXIMUM OF 1100 PARTICIPANTS will be allowed to start.