Exactly what type of equipment do you need for the swim section of a triathlon race?

Not a whole lot really. Most races require a wetsuit (mandatory in any cold water event) and you would definitely want to have a pair of goggles with you.

Outside of that, there is not much else that you must have. A spare swimming hat and some bodyglide to help you get your wetsuit on.

 

Best Entry Level Triathlon Wetsuit

best entry level triathlon wetsuit reviewI have been racing Triathlon for many years now and when I first started out I was a bit overwhelmed with the amount of gear I needed – well I thought I needed anyway. 

One of the more expensive items on my list was a wetsuit and today we look at the best entry level triathlon wetsuit money can buy.

There are a lot of races that won’t even let you into the water without a wetsuit  – due to the low temperatures so it’s a bit of kit you can’t do without.

Plus if you aren’t the best swimmer out there you will be glad of the extra buoyancy you get from a wetsuit.

I started searching online and found a lot of rubbish to be honest so set about creating a review for beginner triathlon wetsuits so you don’t have to go through the same pain that I did.

QUICK GUIDE

COMPARISON FEATURES SIZING FLEX
BUOYANCY BUILD QUALITY WETSUIT MAINTENANCE TOP CHOICE

Firstly, when you are starting out, don’t spend a fortune on a wetsuit because you never know if you are going to stick with the sport and a decent tri suit is not really suitable for much else bar triathlons…

Here is a quick summary of our top triathlon wetsuits for beginners. We will go into detail on each one further down the page.

Best Entry Level Triathlon Wetsuit Comparison


What to look for in a wetsuit for Triathlon?

One thing that you will notice immediately is that even at this lower end of the price range all the top brands are in there. This just shows how things have moved on since I started.

My first wetsuit was great but not ideal for triathlon – at the time it was all I could afford. It is still in great condition and I use it for practicing all of the time.

What to look for?

There are a few fundamentals with a good tri wetsuit that you should look out for:

Fit and Build Quality

Most important of the lot is the fit of the wetsuit. 

The wetsuit should be a snug fit with no gaps or looseness at the small of your back but not so tight that you can’t stand up fully without is tearing into your shoulders or crotch area.

The zipper should be flat on your back and easy to open and close by yourself. It should feel very strong and be made of heavy duty materials.

The seams around the zipper should be sealed and flush to your back as well. All good tri wetsuits will sport a good zipper and the ones above are no exception.

The seams of the wetsuit should be smooth and flat with some wetsuits providing an additional layer of protection in the way of seam tape to cover everything up nicely.

The first thing to go on any wetsuit will be one of the seams so make sure your suit is a reputable brand and you have nothing to worry about.

All good suits have some additional buoyancy panels built into the design. These are great for helping you stay afloat but just make sure they do not hamper your swim stroke in any way.

Budget Wetsuits may have all the features but they aren’t necessarily in the right places – not with the brands we have covered though…

Flexibility

Flexibility is crucial for a couple of reasons. Firstly these wetsuits can be a nightmare to get on before a race. Use a bit of body glide if you are having trouble. You also need to be able to get the thing off after the swim.

You also need to be able to get the thing off after the swim. This becomes even more challenging because you are trying to remove it while you are running into the transition area to start your bike leg. I have seen more people struggle at this stage of the race than anywhere else.

Top Tip: Practice getting in and out of it a few times before you head out on your first race and get used to it. Triathletes, in general, are very friendly people but don’t get stuck in transition half out of your wetsuit and nowhere to go…

Also, remember that you are going to be wearing your tri suit under the wetsuit for speed in transition so make sure everything fits properly and still gives you free arm movement. Check out this post to see what to wear under your wetsuit.

Buoyancy

I have to admit I’m not the best swimmer in the world so can use all the help I can get. Having a nice buoyant wetsuit on during the swim is a great help.

There are times in the past where I had to stop swimming and just float around for a bit to catch my breath – did I mention I’m not the best swimmer…

All modern wetsuits have additional buoyancy panels built in so happy days. My original suit didn’t have these luxuries but was that thick it was like a dry suit and I would have needed a weight belt to get it to sink.

Believe me, I relied on it a few times.

If you are looking for the best triathlon wetsuit for a poor swimmer then something with as much buoyancy as possible will really help you out.

This approach does have some downsides though. The heavier wetsuits tend to be more restrictive around the upper arm area and are not the best once you master the art of freestyle swimming.

What you are looking for is a wetsuit with buoyancy panels included that do not hamper your swim stroke in any way. Any of the wetsuits in the comparison table below will cover this for you so nothing to worry about.

Build Quality

Let’s face it. Your wetsuit is most likely going to be the second most expensive purchase you make, number 1 being your bike, so you want to make sure it last you for a long time.

With the brands listed above, you are getting premium quality at very affordable prices and the features are designed for their top wetsuits that can run well over $1000 a piece. There are no spurious knock-off suits listed that you may find elsewhere. These are premium wetsuits from top-flight Triathlon Gear companies.

Looking after your wetsuit

There are a few things you can do to extend the life of your wetsuit and keep it in tip-top condition for the next race.

Always wash your suit after every race. This is just as important for freshwater swims as it is for saltwater racing.

In freshwater, you will pick up all sorts of grime and much getting in and out of the water and if the water level is low you are probably going to be swimming through some weed beds at some stage of the race.

It is very important after a Sea swim to wash the wetsuit thoroughly and remove all traces of salt from both the inside and outside.

I usually hang mine in the shower and give it a good scrub down with a soft cloth after each race. Just make sure the wetsuit is fully dry before you pack it away.

Another thing you can do after the suit ages a bit is to lubricate the zipper lightly. This might seem trivial but you will be glad you did when you are trying to get the darned thing off you in the transition area.


Blueseventy Men’s Sprint FullSleeve Wetsuit – Our Top Choice

Preview Product Rating Price
blueseventy Men's Sprint Triathlon Wetsuit Size MT blueseventy Men's Sprint Triathlon Wetsuit Size MT 2 Reviews $229.95 from $171.00

best entry level triathlon wetsuit review

While this may be classed as an entry level wetsuit the Blueseventy Sprint has all the features you would expect in a high-end tri wetsuit.

Tri Wetsuits have really advanced over the past number of years and this suit is loaded with the latest technology.

This suit has additional buoyancy pads on the upper leg and hip areas to lift you higher in the water column to help you swim faster.

Built with 38 cell Yamamoto neoprene you have a very flexible suit that is buoyant and super durable.

The suits legs and arms are coated with SCS – a friction reducing coating that supposedly helps you glide through the water better.

You will have to try it to find out…

The arm and ankle cuffs are made from a silicone compound that helps you get the suit on and off. You will appreciate this feature alone if you struggle with your wetsuit.

A final nice feature is the back of the neck. Blueseventy have lowered this a bit to stop you rubbing the neck off yourself when you are swimming.

It also has the added advantage of keeping the zipper top clear.

We have used Blueseventy gear for some time and are big fans of their triathlon bags so have no hesitation in recommending them as a brand or indeed their wetsuit.

Just look around the next time you are lining up for your swim at the start line and you will see plenty of athletes – both beginner and pro wearing them.


That’s it for now. We will be adding to this review as more triathlon wetsuits come down in price and offer the same quality and features like the ones we have listed.

Whatever suit you choose make sure the fit is right, you look after it and enjoy your swimming.

Now get out there and start racing…

 

best clip on aerobars for triathlon 2018

Sprint Distance Triathlete. Swim, Bike, Run, Fitness. IronMan is on the cards for 2018. Love the tech behind triathlon equipment and spend far too much time testing everything out so you don’t have to!!

Best Swimming Goggles Review

There are many options available when looking for the best swim goggles.  Whether you are looking for the most comfortable full mask type goggles or for the slick suction goggles you will have plenty of choice.  Swimming goggles will most likely be one of the cheaper purchases you make when getting set up for a triathlon.  Prices range from about twenty dollars up to about fifty dollars for the top of the line.

It really comes down to what you are most comfortable wearing.  I started out wearing the full mask style goggles as they gave me the best field of vision and I didn’t have to worry about them leaking during a race.  They do offer a bigger ‘target’ when racing for somebody else’s foot to kick them off your head.

I progressed onto a much slicker pain of TYR Special Ops goggles as I got more confident in the water.  I usually wear two swimming hats during a race.  The second hat goes over the band of the goggles to help keep it in place while racing.  There is nothing worse than losing your goggles during a race – it’s hard enough as it is to manoeuvre around the water without having to do it with your eyes closed.


Our best Triathlon Goggles


Our Top 3 Swimming Goggles

First Place: Speedo Vanquisher 2.0 Mirrored Swim Goggle

The best selling swimming goggles for 2014 are without any doubt the Speedo Vanquisher 2.0 Mirrored Swim Goggle.

Some of the features that make these the best swimming goggles on the market are the ultra low profile design that gives you an additional 25% peripheral vision.  Very handy when you are jammed into a pack of eager triathletes all vying for a personal best.  They come with a silicone double headstrap that is easily adjustable, and you wont have to worry about these goggles moving about while you are swimming.

The soft silicone eye seals keep every last drop of water out and the ultra mirrored coating help reduce the glare off the water.


Second Place: Aqua Sphere KAYENNE GOGGLE

A very close second in this review is the Aqua Sphere Kayenne Goggle.

These goggles are a firm favorite of mine because they give you a full field of vision when you are swimming.  The big lenses are great when you are starting out and you get none of the uncomfortable pressure or suction feeling when you are wearing them.

They come with a very easy to use adjusting system which allows you to make small adjustments while wearing them.  Couple that with the anti-fog and scratch resistant lenses and you are on to a winner with these goggles.


Third Place: Sable Water Optics

The final set in our top three review of swim goggles are the excellent Sable WaterOptics 101MT Mirrored Competition Goggles.  These goggles form Sable are top of the line with regards to quality and features.

If you need a very clear view of things going on around you then these are the goggles for you.  They are a bit more expensive than the other goggles in this review but then the quality of this brand really shine out.  They do not fog up when you are swimming and because of the quality of the fit you wouldn’t even know you were wearing them.  They are a firm favorite amongst budding and professional triathletes.


Swim Goggles – What to look for

There are many types of swimming goggles you can purchase and here we will break it down a bit more to give you some ideas and use cases for each one.

Competition Goggles

anti fog sprayCompetition goggles are really slick close fitting goggles.  You will see this style on most of the serious swimmers on race day.  They sit very close in to the eye so reduce drag considerably and because they are so slick they also help with aerodynamics during the swim.  They take a bit of getting used to but are by far the best but take some getting used to because of the tight fit.  I strongly suggest testing these and get comfortable with them in the pool or on training sessions before you hit the start line.  Some people cannot wear them at all so take your time and get them setup and adjusted to suit early.  I have seen people mark the bands with tape so they know exactly where the need to be adjusted to in case they slip.

Gasket Goggles

Seen by many as the most comfortable swim goggles the gasket style name comes from the ring of silicone or sometimes foam than lines the inner edge of the goggles.  They fit snugly to the contours of your face and do not sit in too tight to the eyeball.  Sometimes you will hear people complaining that they suck their eyeballs out and are too tight.  This comes down to how they are adjusted.  Again to highlight the point I made earlier, make sure you test and adjust them correctly before race day.  A couple of sessions in the pool will have you sorted in no time at all.

Full Mask Goggles

swim gogglesThe full mask style swim goggles are great when starting out.  Not the most aerodynamic of styles but for the novice competitor or casual swimmer they are ideal.  They give you a full field of vision and do not in any way press in on your eye sockets.  The silicone edge fits around the face very comfortably.  This is the style I started out with.  The big problem I had was they were removed rather abruptly from my head about 2 meters into the first competitive swim I ever did.  I do still however use them during the odd training session as they really are very comfortable and have never leaked a drop.

Swim Goggles – How do they Fit

Next up we want to look at how to correctly fit your new swim goggles.  We have all seen the mysterious red band of terror that people produce when they take off their swimming goggles.  Do the following next time you put yours on or are trying out a new pair.

Easy does it

As a minimum test you want to make sure the goggles actually fit you.  This is easily achieved by press fitting the goggles onto your face.  Push them gently towards your face until the suction process takes over.  They should fit around your eye and not in it.  Don’t force them – apart from blinding yourself momentarily you will not conduct a suitable test this way.  If they fit correctly they should stay in place on their own.  Note that we have not tightened the strap at this stage.  They should stay there on their own.

Can I still see

Next you want to adjust the strap.  Don’t tighten the strap to the point where you might pass out from lack of blood circulation either.  You want to tighten it enough to make sure the goggles stay in place because the suction process mentioned above will look after the water tight seal not the strap.

Caring for your Goggles

best swim gogglesMake sure you wash and rinse your goggles properly after you swim.  Do not rinse them in the pool but rather rinse them off in the shower or under a tap.  The pool chlorine will eat away at the seals if you don’t wash it off post swim.  You should also make sure to store your goggles in a dry place after use.  Your best swim goggles will be useless if left in the bottom of a damp gear bag.  Bacteria will start to grow on them and the lenses will get dull or even crack.  Dry them thoroughly and store them somewhere dry.  Most decent swimming goggles come with a hard case which is ideal for storage.  If you have the luxury of living in a climate that allows for a lot of outdoor swimming protect your goggles from prolonged exposure to the sun.  This exposure will effect the durability of the straps.

So just to recap.  Keep you swim goggles dry, clean and away from the sun and they will last for many years.

best clip on aerobars for triathlon 2018

Sprint Distance Triathlete. Swim, Bike, Run, Fitness. IronMan is on the cards for 2018. Love the tech behind triathlon equipment and spend far too much time testing everything out so you don’t have to!!

Triathlon Transition Bags for 2018 Season. Review & Buying Guide

Triathlon bags or transition bags, while not essential for race day are a must of you want to get to and from a race without stressing on whether you have everything you need to complete.

I spend a fair amount of hard-earned money on my tri gear. The last thing I want to happen is for it to end up all over the road.

That’s where a good triathlon transition bag comes in. 

I spent far too long researching these so you don’t have to…

Yes, I know it seems odd but the reality is that you need somewhere to keep all your stuff on race day, and a properly kitted out bag is going to help reduce stress when you get to the start line.  

Knowing you have everything you need and that it’s all readily available in its own compartment really does make a difference.


So which is the best and why:

Take a look below.  We have picked out our best-sellers, the top of the line tri bag, and also a nice quality budget bag.


Our Best Selling Triathlon Transition Bag

The Blue Seventy Transition Bag is by far our most popular transition bag.

Most people who race triathlon will know Blue Seventy for their awesome wetsuits.  They also make a superb triathlon transition bag.  

This really is a great all-rounder and a bag that some of our racing team currently use.

Some of its cool features include a large insulated compartment at the bottom of the bag that will hold a wetsuit.  A very handy elasticated pocket for your helmet.

Some fairly decent sized side pockets for drinks bottles and hydration, a multitude of internal zip pockets for your essentials like keys etc..

It sports a large opening for top loading of your kit and has plenty of room to hold everything you need on race day.  

Top all of that off with very comfortable shoulder and waist straps to carry the bag around and you are on to a winner with the Blue Seventy Tri bag.

This bag has been around for a while now but still makes the cut when it comes to value quality and features.  A very popular triathlon transition bag and top of our list.


Our Second Choice Triathlon Bag from Orca

Orca makes a fantastic tri bag that is jam packed with features you would expect to see from a brand like Orca.

The Orca bag has been built with every feature designed to suit a triathlete. There are pockets for literally everything you need on race day.

The is a very handy helmet pocket to protect your lid, special dry compartments for your wet gear, separate sections for dry gear and it even has lined sealed compartments for your electronics like phone and car keys.

One really great feature is the bright interior of the bag. Now, this may seem gimmicky but it’s really easy to find things in the bag because of the contrasting colors.

So let’s take a closer look at what we really like featurewise about this tri bag.

  • It’s 100% polyester so it’s very hard wearing and easy to keep clean
  • The helmet protector keeps you prize helmet safe and covered at all times
  • It comes in at 70l storage capacity so plenty of room for all your gear. No more bring separate bags along to transition
  • The carry straps are nice and padded and can be converted into a single carry strap so this bag can go everywhere with you
  • It is a cool looking bag, comes with white reflective strips to keep you safe and the green liner makes finding things a breeze.

You can pick this bag up here and as we have stated, it really is a great hard wearing bag full of features


Our Top Choice | Best Quality Bag

The Gyst BP1-15 Triathlon Backpack claims the top spot in our review.

This really is a top class tri bag and carries all the features you would expect from Gyst.

It features the Gyst X-Changer system that allows you to get changed pretty much anywhere.  

You can stand on a built-in transition mat that folds out from the bag, keeping your feet clean and dry while you change – essential when you are in a transition area and don’t have time for anything.

There is a multitude of pockets in this bag that can carry all of your triathlon or fitness gear, a wet compartment for your wetsuit or swimming gear and damp towels.

  • This bag is unique, in that it transforms into a tri bag with a built-in transition mat
  • It has a great selection of magnets, loops and hooks that allow for easy access to all the compartments
  • A great feature of this bag is the dual access.  This allows you to load the bag from either opening.  Saves pulling everything out to get what you need
  • Also, has a built-in drainage system to remove any excess water after use
  • Made from water-repellent fabric with great size #10 zippers

Best Value For Money Tri Bag

The final bag on our list is the TYR Alliance Team II Backpack.  This awesome bag from TYR really is the best value for money available today.  

Full of top features that you would expect from TYR – A great brand in triathlon.

The TYR tri bag has a good-sized interior compartment that will hold all your swim gear or wet towels.  It also sports a large dry compartment.  This helps separate things out and keep you organized.

It comes with a goggle protector pocket, reinforced interior pockets and a handy pocket for your iPod or smartphone.  Comes with good strong straps and has a padded back for extra comfort.

This really is a great bag considering the cost.


triathlon transition bagAlso known as a triathlon duffle bag, triathlon gear bag, equipment bag, triathlon gym bag.  (List goes on)

Put simply, though – you cannot underestimate the import role a good tri bag plays on race day. Everything on race day goes into your bag, except your bike and possibly your helmet, but there are bags that have clips for holding your helmet which comes in very handy.

My first day out I had three bags full of gear and more bits and pieces.  What a disaster really.

There was stuff everywhere and I must have gone through each bag twenty times to make sure I had everything.  I invested in a decent transition bag before the second race to avoid this happening again.

Modern design gives you multiple compartments and sections that allow you to split up each area of the race into separate spaces.

Very handy when you are going through your pre-race gear checklist and you know where to find everything. Saves the twenty check panic attacks…

We can provide customer reviews for Zoot, Zipp, Zeus, Blue Seventy, Desoto, Nike, Orca, TYR and more, so just reach out and ask us.  If there is a particular bag you have in mind that is not on our list we will gladly take a look and give you our honest opinion via a review.


 Features to look out for:

When you are on the hunt for a new tri bag there are some key features you should definitely look for.

As this is a multi-disciplinary sport you should try and get a tri bag with separate compartments for each discipline.

What do we mean by that?

When you are going to a race everything is nicely organised and more importantly dry!

If you can get a bag with a wetsuit compartment and somewhere waterproof to store your towel you will keep everything else in your bag from getting soaked.

I like to separate out my gear based on each section of the race.

I keep all my swimming gear together in one section. There is a dedicated section for my tri suit and running gear – including my runners, and finally somewhere for my helmet and visor.

That way when I get to the transition area I can easily grab each set of gear and lay it out. Nice and calm with no panic…

Some of the best triathlon bags on the market are designed this way and one particular feature I like is the ability to strap my helmet onto my bag out of the way. Just remember to put in on once you enter the transition area or you risk being disqualified before you even get started.

Look for something with a bit of padding around the straps and the back area. We tend to carry quite a bit of kit in our packs and you don’t want to strain or injure yourself – at least until after you cross the finish line.

I also like to keep all my race nutrition separate from my gear just in case any of my gels or fluids leaks. This can be a bit of a nightmare as everything gets sticky and uncomfortable.

Some modern racing bags have an array of side pockets for storing kit and these can be great for things like swimming goggles, swimming hats and even your tri sunglasses.

You bring a lot of gear with you on race day so keep it organised and you will be one happy racer.

You get my point… So make sure you have a system or checklist for your tri bag and tick everything off well in advance. Hop in the car on race day with peace of mind 


Essentials for your Tri Bag

When it gets closer to race day it always pays to be organised. There is enough happening on the day without you having to worry about whether you packed everything you need. 

Did I remember my goggles?

Are my shoes packed?

1. Bike Helmet

Yep, I’ve seen this many times before. People rock up on race day and have forgotten their helmet. Rules now dictate that you can’t even get into the transition area without your helmet firmly attached to your head, so if you forgot yours then you are out before you even start.

Some of the specialised tri bags have specific compartments for your helmet or straps on the top or front of the backpack when you can clip on your helmet.

If you are using one of the really fancy Triathlon TT helmets then chances are it comes with its own bag or box so just clip that onto your bag strap somewhere anyway.

2. Bike Shoes

I like to pre-clip my shoes onto the pedals before I leave transition and hold them in place with a few elastic bands so they don’t flop about in the run-up to the bike starting point. But what happens if you forget your shoes. Have you ever tried to cycle a bike with normal runners and clip on pedals – yes it works but you ain’t going to be hitting any personal bests on the day.

Some more modern bags have special zippered areas or netting for your shoes so make sure you have them packed before you go.

3. Swimming Gear – Wetsuit / Hat / Goggles / Towel

I have a bag that has separate areas for each part of my race and that really helps keep me organised. Make sure to pack yours before you leave the house on race day.

You can live without a swimming hat because at most races you are given a colour coded hat so the marshalls know what wave or race you are competing in and can direct you easily.

You can also do without Goggles if you are really stuck but I would not recommend it. I always have two pairs packed just in case a) I lose a pair or b) I break the elastic band. Also, make sure to throw in the anti-fog spray if required so you can see where you are going

Most important of the lot when it comes to swimming, is your wetsuit. Now in some races, you are allowed in the water without one but why not have it on anyway to help you with buoyancy and streamlining in the water. Use the advantage where you can.

Look for a bag that has a wetsuit compartment included because while the wetsuit is dry going on, it’s going to be soaking when it comes off and you don’t want to mess up the rest of your gear if you don’t have to.

Always pack a towel. This comes in extra handy after you enter T1 and get changed into your bike gear. Try pulling tight socks onto wet feet when you are in a rush and you will understand. It only takes a few seconds to dry your feet but it’s totally worth it. 

Plus you can fold it beside your bike and put the rest of your kit on it to set out your stall in the transition area…

4. Tri Suit / Runners and socks

Chances are you will already be wearing this when you leave the house because a lot of people are that prepared. If this is not your case then make sure it is in your bag. It’s extremely hard to cycle and then run a race in a wetsuit – apart from the looks and laughter it’s not going to help your times in any way…

I have churned through many different types of tri suits over the years but they will never get used if you forget to bring them with you!

Believe it or not but quite a few athletes forget their runners. You would think they would be already wearing then on the day but that is not always the case. Make sure they are packed and stick a spare pair of socks into the bag just in case.

5. Hydration / Gels / Fluids

Hydration is critical to your performance so make sure to keep an eye on this at all times. I have a bottle on my bike at all times but will often have a spare bottle with me – depending on heat conditions etc.

Not so important for short Sprint type races but for anything longer you will be using Gels or nutritional bars/chews of some description as you race. Check out our review of the best triathlon gels here. Yes, there will be vendors there on the day in case you are stuck but we don’t recommend taking anything different than the norm on race day just in case it upsets your stomach or gives you cramps. The time for experimenting is when you are training only.


 

As you can see there are many features you would expect in a decent triathlon equipment bag.  

We have tried to take a look at some of the best bags on the market from an inexpensive triathlon training bag right up to the triathlon elite bag and give you an overview as part of this review so you know what to look for.  

If you don’t find what you are looking for today then why not subscribe to our site for relevant updates or check back in again another day.

We hope you like our review and thanks for stopping by.

If you are just getting into Triathlon then why not take a look at the history of the sport and see where it came from.  It’s a great read.  You can check it out here.

Another thing you should definitely check out is the following video on how to pack you tri bag correctly. This clip is loaded with great tips

Thanks for visiting and happy racing.

best clip on aerobars for triathlon 2018

Sprint Distance Triathlete. Swim, Bike, Run, Fitness. IronMan is on the cards for 2018. Love the tech behind triathlon equipment and spend far too much time testing everything out so you don’t have to!!

Best GPS watch for open water swimming

GPS and Fitness tracking devices are everywhere and come in all shapes, sizes and prices.

The right one for you comes down to a few basic requirements.

Are you swimming in open water?

Do you need it to track swim strokes or just for GPS tracking?

Will you use it for multi-sport events like triathlons or marathons?

Each of these has many answers so instead of dwelling on them lets take a look at some of my favourite GPS watches for open water and see if you spot the one you like


We take our racing very seriously and while I’m not the fastest triathlete out there I do like to closely monitor my performance during each race.

For that, I use my Garmin Fenix 5X. The Garmin is huge and does weight a fair bit on your wrist. I have very wide wrists so it doesn’t bother me and the weight is worth the tradeoff because it’s packed with more features that I will probably ever use.

Yes, it does cost a fair bit but to me, it’s the best on the market and is worth every cent I spent on it.

If you are looking for a watch that does pretty much everything then this is the one for you.

So let’s dig into the techie stuff for a few mins and see what it can do…

First up we are going to look at the GPS multi-sport qualities of this watch. We are avid triathletes in this group so there are a few must-haves for us.


When it comes to picking out an idea triathlon watch there are some things that are a must-have in terms of functionality.

Title
Best Value
Garmin Forerunner 935
Garmin Forerunner 735XT
Top Choice
Garmin Fenix 5 Sapphire
Garmin Forerunner 735XT Bundle
Star Rating
Preview
Garmin Forerunner 935 Running GPS Unit (Black)
Garmin Forerunner 735XT - Black & Gray
Garmin Fenix 5 Sapphire - Black with Black Band
Garmin Forerunner 735XT - Black & Gray Run-Bundle
Reviews
304 Reviews
235 Reviews
969 Reviews
56 Reviews
Display Type
LCD
215 x 180, Color display
240 x 240
215 x 180, Color display
GPS
Weight
1.76 ounces
1.6 ounces
0.8 lb
1.6 ounces
Multi-Sport
Price
from $429.89
from $345.95
from $399.99
from $399.99
Best Value
Title
Garmin Forerunner 935
Star Rating
Preview
Garmin Forerunner 935 Running GPS Unit (Black)
Reviews
304 Reviews
Display Type
LCD
GPS
Weight
1.76 ounces
Multi-Sport
Price
from $429.89
Details
Title
Garmin Forerunner 735XT
Star Rating
Preview
Garmin Forerunner 735XT - Black & Gray
Reviews
235 Reviews
Display Type
215 x 180, Color display
GPS
Weight
1.6 ounces
Multi-Sport
Price
from $345.95
Details
Top Choice
Title
Garmin Fenix 5 Sapphire
Star Rating
Preview
Garmin Fenix 5 Sapphire - Black with Black Band
Reviews
969 Reviews
Display Type
240 x 240
GPS
Weight
0.8 lb
Multi-Sport
Price
from $399.99
Details
Title
Garmin Forerunner 735XT Bundle
Star Rating
Preview
Garmin Forerunner 735XT - Black & Gray Run-Bundle
Reviews
56 Reviews
Display Type
215 x 180, Color display
GPS
Weight
1.6 ounces
Multi-Sport
Price
from $399.99
Details

Garmin Fenix 3 HR

The Garmin Fenix 3 HR  is an omnidirectional stainless steel GPS watch for open water swimming with GPS/GLONASS satellite capabilities.

With Fitness training features like advanced running dynamics with vertical oscillation and vertical radio, you will definitely find it hard using another GPS watch after using this one.

Rugged, capable and smart, the Garmin comes in a treated silicone band with reinforced housing for sturdiness and durability in extreme water conditions.

The display screen is in high-resolution color Chroma display which is visible under intense sunlight thanks to the LED backlight.

The Fenix 3 HR can be used inside the water and it is water rated up to 100 meters with a battery life of up to 40 hours in UltraTrac battery saver mode, 16 hours in GPS mode and up to 2 weeks of use in smartwatch mode. It’s truly a beast in the ocean.

Lens Material
Glass
Bezel Material
Steel
Strap Material
TPU
Bat Life: GPS + Smart
3 Weeks
GPS/GLONASS
Altimeter, Barometer, Compass
Activity & Sleep Tracking
Running Physiological Measurements
Golf
Wrist Heart Rate
Lens Material
Glass
Bezel Material
Steel
Strap Material
TPU
Bat Life: GPS + Smart
3 Weeks
GPS/GLONASS
Altimeter, Barometer, Compass
Activity & Sleep Tracking
Running Physiological Measurements
Golf
Wrist Heart Rate

With the Garmin, tracking your heart rate won’t require the use of a chest strap.

It gives you the option to track your heart rate data without wearing a chest strap which is a movement away from what we had in some of the other Triathlon watches that we have reviewed above.

You can also count your steps, monitor your sleep with this watch. The Fenix 3 HR uses the heart rate to crunch other numbers such as the amount of calories burned and quantify the intensity of your fitness activities per time.

When it comes to going into every detail about your form and fitness, the Garmin Fenix 3 HR has your covered here as well.

It can measure your oxygen levels and your recovery easily.

It uses the VO2 estimator to crunch important metrics such as your stroke speed, beats per minute and your heart rate variability to estimate the total amount of oxygen that you can consume per minute and if you want, you can also track your overall fitness gains over a period of time and compare it with your friends.

Garmin Fenix 3 HR can track the distance covered, pace and your stroke count.

Once you input the pool size into the watch, it will do the rest of the data crunching for you. This same feature is also available for skiing, golf and paddle sports.

Golfers can use it to get the yardage to the front back and the middle of any course you might have downloaded from Garmin Connect and if you want, you can use your GPS watch as a glove-friendly remote via the ANT+ wireless connectivity feature.

The multi-sport watch is not just useful in the water; this watch has relevance on dry land as well.

It can allow you go further with your running data and tap into advanced running dynamics to create a range of important data such as the number of steps taken per minute (Cadence), the degree of bounce in your running motion and the benefit ratio to stride length.

The Fenix 3 HR also measures your stress levels by comparing your heart rate data while standing still for 3 minutes to provide you with data on how stress you are.

The Fenix 3 HR provides serious bass when it comes to comprehensive navigation. It can guide you on and off the beaten path using GPS plus the combination of ABC.

ABC represents the Altimeter, Barometer and Compass.

It can help you navigate your way back to where you came from. With inbuilt sensors for providing important information on heading, elevation, and weather, you will find this watch handy for your everyday use as well.

The altimeter provides the elevation data to monitor your ascent and descent while Barometer helps you predict the change in weather by showing you information in air pressure over the short term.

The Garmin Fenix 3 HR can be customized with tons of free downloads from the Connect IQ store.

You can add new data fields, widgets and important apps that will make it more fun and appealing to use.

You can also receive emails and alerts right on your watch while in the pool swimming.

It uses the wireless connection from a smartphone to let you know when you have a message – displaying the text on your display screen.

Pros

  • Quite lightweight thanks to the rubber strap
  • Well-designed and versatile GPS watch
  • The battery life is very good.
  • Combination of GPS/ABC/Health/Fashion features

Cons

  • Difficult using it with Microsoft products.
  • GPS data is not always accurate.

Garmin 910xt

The Garmin Forerunner 910XT is a next-generation triathlon watch from Garmin and a super upgrade to the Garmin Forerunner FR305.

But is the Garmin 910XT just another upgrade with little to show for it other than a slimmer profile? Actually, it does have a lot going for it.

Garmin Forerunner 910XT is one of the best triathlon watches out there with an insane ability to track time, distance, speed, elevation and the heart rate.

It combines a whole lot of features that make it one of the most revered GPS watches in the market. When you flip open the box, you will see a couple of things that will help you get started.

These include the USB charging clip, USB ANT + stick, the watch, the manual and a heart rate strap.

One of the first things that will amaze you when you go through the content of the box is the power plugs.

The Garmin Forerunner 910XT comes with three different types of plugs – the standard US power plug and two others for customers who reside or are travelling to Europe or the UK. This comes in handy if you are venturing abroad for a race…

The second thing that will blow your mind when you unbox this GPS watch is the heart rate strap which includes a strap and the transmitter pod. The design of the strap here is quite different from what we had in the previous models but it’s still quite effective.

Each Heart Rate strap is paired with Premium ANT+ but the type of strap you will get will depend on the version of the 910XT that you purchase.

You can also use an older or existing ANT+ strap but you should stay away from any strap from a Polar unit.

The USB charging clip that we spoke about earlier will be used to charge the watch by connecting it to your computer or through the AC power plug but it can’t be used to transfer data.

The USB stick, on the other hand, will be used to make data transfer via the ANT+ method. The ANT+ method is a way of transmitting data between Garmin devices.

The ANT+ protocol is strictly for Garmin devices and it is quite similar to Bluetooth except that it uses lower energy as compared with Bluetooth.

In order to transfer data from your watch to your computer, you will have to plug the ANT+ USB stick into your computer so it can establish a connection with your GPS watch.

Forerunner 910XT is an all in all GPS enabled watch designed for use as an open water swimming watch. It is water resistant up to 50 meters and it is Garmin’s first Triathlon watch which offers an extensive set of swim metrics that can be used to monitor and track your movement in the pool such as distance covered, stroke identification and pool lengths.

The Garmin Forerunner 910XT is as powerful on land as it is on water.

It offers a wide range of powerful and advanced cycling features for capturing your speed and distance over time.

What’s new?

The Forerunner 910XT also has a barometric altimeter which is a step above the GPS altimeter that came in the previous FR310XT and the FR305 models.

With the barometric altimeter on this GPS watch, a cyclist can map to reality better than what they had with the GPS data and when this doesn’t work as expected, they can use the altitude data correction on the Garmin Connect device to switch on the elevation correction.

Pros

  • Can be used for a range of activity including biking, running and swimming.
  • Easy low power transmission via the ANT+ network.
  • Great for anyone doing triathlons.
  • The screen is easy to navigate and use.

Cons

  • Concerns about its use with a kickboard and it seems to be inaccurate when doing laps.
  • Data transfer must not be interrupted once it begins.

Multisport mode

In addition to the standard features that should be expected from a good watch, it should also come with a multisport mode that allows you to use the watch for other activities outside swimming.

Multisport watches can be paired with your smartphone via Bluetooth Smart connectivity so you can enjoy other conveniences like reading your email, texts and other important alerts to you.

Triathlon and Outdoor Navigation

Triathlon watches come with extra features for tracking your steps, stroke count, calories, heart rate underwater while swimming, type of stroke and barometric altimeter. Having a GPS watch that can record the necessary metrics for your performance as well as other sports that you might engage in is a smart move. 

 

best clip on aerobars for triathlon 2018

Sprint Distance Triathlete. Swim, Bike, Run, Fitness. IronMan is on the cards for 2018. Love the tech behind triathlon equipment and spend far too much time testing everything out so you don’t have to!!

What to wear under a wetsuit

My very first triathlon race was a day to remember.

Apart from the sheer excitement on race day I also remember not having a clue what to do, where to go or even what to wear.

You learn a lot the first race you compete in and usually, it’s the difference between how fit you think you are and how fit you actually are. 🙂

what do you wear under a wetsuit

I had a million questions I didn’t know the answer to and one of them was what to wear under your triathlon wetsuit. Now, this might seem like a simple question to answer but remember this was my first race and I went alone so didn’t have anybody to ask in advance.

Turned out I was ok as I had invested in a dedicated tri suit so was covered. The one thing that I didn’t know and maybe that was me being a bit stupid but because it was my first race I had never trained in the full setup. As in, wearing my tri suit under my wetsuit and going for a swim training session.

At the time I was under the illusion that my wetsuit would keep everything dry. Well, it didn’t and I got soaked to the skin. My very basic tri suit cost little or nothing so didn’t really dry out during the bike ride. I upgraded my basic tri suit to something a little better quality before the second race.

The reason for this? I wanted something that was quick dry. Wear a soaking wet tri suit on a 40k bike ride in the wind and you will know why this is so important.

What should you wear under your wetsuit?

On race day it will either be a dedicated tri suit or tri specific shorts and a tri top. Remember to invest in something that is quick dry or you will end up numb in places that shouldn’t be numb.

If you go for a tri suit then check out our reviews here –  Mens Tri Suits | Women’s Tri Suits

If you decide to go with dedicated triathlon shorts then check out these reviews here.

When you are training you should also wear your full kit. You want to feel exactly the same on race day as you do when you are training so make sure everything is the same with your setup.

I train with a group of guys now and we all follow the same pattern. In fact, you would nearly think we are heading to a race when we are training. But that is part of the fun. Getting used to everything is much easier during a training session as you have enough to be worried about on race day.

One of the big advantages of this approach is you get to try everything out before the pressure of the race. For example: At one point early in my triathlon racing career I tried to use tri shorts and a separate tri top. Everything looked and felt great until I tried going for a long training swim with it all under my wetsuit.

After the first 500 meters or so I ended up nearly ending my career as a father because the shorts had moved about so much under my wetsuit that they ended up in places that no shorts are designed to go. I had no choice but to stop the training session and change into something else.

If this had of happened on race day I’m not sure if I could have continued on.

Why should you wear your tri suit under your wetsuit at all

The main reason for this is speed in the transition area – T1 – where you transition from the swim to the bike sections of the race.

If you had to take off your wetsuit, wrap a towel around yourself and get dry before you put on your shorts and top you would waste very valuable time in transition when you should be out on the course.

Go to a race as a spectator and watch the athletes as they come out of the water. Most will have their wetsuit half off before they even reach the transition area. You will then see a fine array of tri suits and tops already on the athletes.

They just remove their wetsuits, clip on their helmets and off they go…

Putting your wetsuit on

Another thing I wish I had known on race day was what is the best way to put on your wetsuit – especially when you are already wearing a tri suit or singlet and tri shorts.

I must have had my suit on for an hour before the race started – I was a bit over-enthusiastic, to say the least. Putting on your suit too early actually hampers your performance on race day so leave yourself just enough time before the starting bell to get into your gear.

What you are wearing under your wetsuit doesn’t really have that much to do with how you put it on other than to make sure you don’t let your singlet roll up you back or drag you tri shorts up into your ‘undercarriage’ too much as this helps nobody – ever.

Spread some bodyglide around the neck, pits and cuffs of your wetsuit and use plastic bags over your hands and feet when you are putting the suit on. This saves your nails tearing into the neoprene material. Yes, it does happen a lot so protect your suit every time.

Here is a very handy video by Triathlete showing you the best way to put on your wetsuit.


We hope this quick guide helps you get set up properly before your first triathlon race.

best clip on aerobars for triathlon 2018

Sprint Distance Triathlete. Swim, Bike, Run, Fitness. IronMan is on the cards for 2018. Love the tech behind triathlon equipment and spend far too much time testing everything out so you don’t have to!!

goggles anti fog spray

anti fog spray for goggles

Anti-Fog Spray for your swimming Goggles

One thing that used to really bug me was fogged up swimming goggles. 

I tried the whole human spit in the goggles trick and had mixed results. 

Not good if you are about to launch into a triathlon swim, can’t see where you are going and are surrounded by a large group of other competitors who are out to beat you at any cost.

swimming tips for triathlon

Remember that your temperature is probably up while you stand at the start line from anticipation.  This will cause you to fog up fairly quickly.

What you really need is a decent anti-fog spray you can throw in the transition bag and give your swim goggles a quick squirt before you get stuck into the race.  No need to worry about goggles fogging up after that.  I find that a good application will last at least a couple of sessions and then it’s just a case of simply giving the goggles another spray.

No need to worry about goggles fogging up after that.  I find that a good anti fog spray application will last at least a couple of sessions and then it’s just a case of simply giving the goggles another spray.


Our best Anti-Fog Spray for swimming goggles

$1.56
Jaws Quick Spit Antifog Spray, 1-Ounce
Jaws - Sports
$7.95 from $6.39
$3.83
Cressi Anti-Fog Spray
Cressi - Sports
$11.50 $7.67
$4.98
Speedo Anti-Fog Goggle Solution, White, 2.5oz
Speedo - Sports
$13.99 $9.01
Cat Crap
Ek - Sports
$9.95
$0.46
Aqua Sphere Anti-Fog Solution
Aqua Sphere - Sports
$4.95 $4.49


Our Top Choice | Jaws Quick Spit Anti Fog Spray

First up we are going to look at Jaws Quick Spit Antifog Spray.  With Jaws you get the worlds most recognized anti fog spray and it has a long list of uses.  From swimming goggles to dive masks, sports goggles and safety goggles, ski goggles, paintball masks and even binoculars Jaws Quick Spit Antifog Spray has you covered.

This long-lasting non-toxic spray provides about 200+ applications per bottle.

Tip:  Make sure you rinse out your goggles after you apply this or you may get a stinging irritation after a couple of laps.


A Close Second for Anti Fog Spray

Cressi Anti Fog Spray for Swim Goggles  is next up for review.  Another quality product that will help you in your quest for clear goggles.  Cressi anti fog is a long lasting solution to fogged up swimming goggles.  You might only have to apply this once a week even if you swim regularly.

Tip:  Like all antifog goggle sprays make sure you rinse out your goggles after each application to avoid irritating you eyes.


Third Place Anti Fog For Goggles

The final anti fog spray for goggles we are going to discuss is Seasoft SeaVue Concentrated Anti-Fog Pump Spray.  SeaVue also provides a long lasting solution to clear swimming vision.

Tip:  Spray this on your goggles a few minutes before you go swimming for a clear and fog-free view.


Anti Fog Spray For Goggles

You certainly have a wide variety of brands available and here we have picked out the top three based on user experience and value for money.  Yep – we know you can use spit and also perhaps baby shampoo as a temporary solution to fogged up goggles but, to be honest on race day you want something you can absolutely rely on.

Think about the fact that you may put your goggles on and take them off a couple of times before you start your race.  This is where the spit/shampoo system fails most of the time.

Do yourself a favor, for under ten dollars you can set your goggles up so there is no need to worry about fogged up lenses while you are flat out in the swim.

Having competed in many multi-sport events one thing I have to rely on is the gear in my bag.  Temperatures are high at the start line and if you look around you will notice quite a few people spitting on, and cleaning out fogged up goggles just before the starting gun goes off.

Being organized and relaxed really helps you concentrate on hitting that personal best you are looking for.  Make sure you can see where you are going by having clear fog-free goggles before you plunge into the water.

This seems like such a simple thing but you will be surprised the next time you are out on the starting line.

The simple solution is a small bottle of anti-fog spray tucked into the corner of you tri bag.  Most swim goggles come with some form of anti-fog coating when they are new.  This wears off over time and cane slowly become a big problem.

We have put together a list of the most popular anti-fog sprays below based on user ratings and reviews to give you an idea of what else is on the market.  One thing is for sure, though.  If you stick to one of the top three brands then you can’t really go wrong.


Thanks for stopping by and checking out our anti-fog spray for goggles review.  If you found this information useful then can we ask you to hit one of the share buttons to help spread the word?

best clip on aerobars for triathlon 2018

Sprint Distance Triathlete. Swim, Bike, Run, Fitness. IronMan is on the cards for 2018. Love the tech behind triathlon equipment and spend far too much time testing everything out so you don’t have to!!

best triathlon wetsuit

Triathlon Wetsuit Reviews

Triathlon Wetsuit Reviews

Are you looking for advice on a  wetsuit for a triathlon? These triathlon wetsuit reviews should give you a good idea where to start.  

Whether you are looking for the most comfortable triathlon wetsuit or the sleekest suit you will have plenty of choice. You can also spend anything from one hundred dollars up to about six hundred dollars for a top of the line triathlon wetsuit and your choice will come down to a couple of things:

What level you compete at and how deep your pockets are.  

There are many advantages with going for the pricier suits but not everybody is willing to invest. Especially on day one.  What I would say is try and stretch yourself a bit from the outset as it will make all the difference come race day.  We may not cover everything in these triathlon wetsuit reviews but hope you can find something here that suits you.  These are the most popular suits on the market at the moment.


Our best Triathlon Wetsuits

$14.95
Blueseventy Helix Wetsuit
Blue Seventy
from $849.95
$25.52
ORCA Men's Openwater Triathlon Wetsuit Size 8
Orca - Misc.
$169.98 from $144.46
$4.97
$250.95
blueseventy Reaction Men's Triathlon Wetsuit, Black, ML
Blue Seventy - Sports Apparel
$549.95 from $299.00
$24.99
Zoot Sports Men's Z Force 3.0 Wetzoot, Black/Flash, Medium T
Zoot Apparel - Sports
$249.99 from $225.00
$89.96
$36.99
ORCA S5 Full Sleeve, Black, Medium Tall
Orca - Sports
$195.99 from $159.00

triathlon wetsuit reviewsSomething that often gets overlooked is caring for your wetsuit.  

You will have made a substantial investment in a wetsuit so make sure you look after it.  The first thing you need to do post race is clean your wetsuit thoroughly.  

Wash it out with clean water – never wash it out in the sea, especially in the surf.  You will just be adding more sand into the mix.  

When you are drying your wetsuit make sure to dry it inside out.  Hang it on a wide hanger (available here) or fold it flat for storage.  If the zipper gets a bit tight the use bees wax to lubricate it.  Never use normal oil etc as this will have a detrimental effect on the material of the wetsuit.  If you take proper care of your wetsuit you will enjoy it for many races to come.  Happy racing…

Happy racing…

Here is a great video that shows you the correct way to put a wetsuit on.

triathlon wetsuit reviews

You also need to consider a decent set of swim goggles as part of your triathlon gear requirements.  

We have a full review section on the best swimming goggles covering off the various styles of swim goggles and the use case for each.  

Your swimming goggles play a very important part during the swim section of the race.

You need to make sure you have a pair you can rely on.  

We have put a review together of some of the best we can find online – from full-face goggles to sleek aero racing goggles.

 


triathlon wetsuit reviewsSomething that is often overlooked is a decent triathlon transition bag to put all this gear into.  

We have a full review section of the best triathlon transition bags which you should check out.  

Look for one with a wetsuit compartment to keep everything else dry.

 

 


best clip on aerobars for triathlon 2018

Sprint Distance Triathlete. Swim, Bike, Run, Fitness. IronMan is on the cards for 2018. Love the tech behind triathlon equipment and spend far too much time testing everything out so you don’t have to!!