6 Ways Older Triathletes Contribute to the Sport

As a 53-year-old triathlete I consider myself a great match for the sport of triathlon.  Here are six areas where senior triathletes contribute and enhance the sport.

 I Spend Money

At this point in my career and life, I have a nice home, cars, and most things that I need.  I have a higher percentage of disposable income that I dedicate towards my gear and training. 

I understand and recognize value and I’m willing to pay for value.  The adage “the cheap man pays twice” is something I believe in so I constantly look for quality and value first then price.  My experience is that you end up spending less in the end if you are will to invest in quality.  At my age I might be buying equipment that may last the rest of our triathlon career. 

The best way for me to be successful is to develop the necessary skills and technique, then work on speed and endurance.  This is why I am a firm believer in formal coaching.  The Masters Swim team I am a member of has been extremely valuable in my swim success and improvement. And cost of a Masters Swimming License and the Y membership have been well worth the cost.

I also like to make the triathlon race experience more than just the race.  I enjoy making a weekend out of it and am willing to travel for the experience.  This year my A race is the Nautica Malibu Triathlon out in California.   

Work to Bring Younger Athletes into the Sport

I have children that I have brought into the sport.  Making the training and racing a togetherness thing has allowed me to bring younger athletes into the sport that would probably not have gotten into the sport.  They are a lot younger than the 53-year Dad that just discovered the sport.

Partially funding their hobby hasn’t hurt; and I hope this gets them on the right path with quality gear and dedication.  I am working to bring the youngsters into the sport.

 Dedication and Focus

I am serious and focused on the sport.  My generation understands the benefit of hard sustained work and the benefit of focusing this energy.  I am goal-driven and display the traits that are necessary for goal achievement.  I plan, set big goals and set my sights on bucket list races and achievements.  I show people how to succeed.

I bring the goal attainment success I’ve experienced in other parts of my life into the sport.  Setting and achieving goals is not an overnight activity and I hope others pick this up by watching me.   

I am not easily distracted and understand the time commitment necessary for success.  I am not out jumping from thing to thing; I know what I want and am dedicated to mastering the sport.

With all this focus and dedication, I’m a great example of the 5:00 am training plan. My days are busy so I’m dedicated to getting my workouts out of the way early allowing the rest of my day to progress as planned.  I plan most everything.

Socially Support the Sport

I am a great ambassador for the sport.  The fact that I have this blog is evident.  I am active on Facebook and Twitter and really share what I learn and my enthusiasm for the sport.  I also use it to support the younger athletes as they chase and achieve their goals. 

I enjoy the camaraderie of the sport from my master’s swim team to the open water folks I swim with to the guys I race with.  I really enjoy making this individual sport a group event.

I enjoy learning about the sport through books, YouTube, podcasts and magazines.  I embrace the old and new media to get the knowledge I need. 

Display Efficiency

I am also busy with family and my career.  I don’t have time to waste on unproven training techniques and equipment.  I may be more conservative in this regard but I focus on high-quality proven equipment and training methodologies.  This helps drive efficiency in my training and approach to the sport.

This focus also requires that I am efficient with my training.  Each workout has a specific purpose and is planned out in every detail.  Maybe too much but I know when I have completed a training workout if I was on plan or not.  I don’t have a lot of junk miles.

 Patient with Development – long-term View

This may sound funny or ironic but I view triathlon as something I can do for the rest of my life.  Which is probably thirty plus years.  That gives me a great long-term view on continually improving.  I want to be efficient in developing my skills and technique but I am long-term as it relates to speed and endurance.  I’m not training for the next Olympics or a college scholarship.

I am working out and training for the sport and me not the mirror.  Over time that will take care of itself.  I’m not looking for a magic bullet but rather recognize expertise and am willing to listen to it, regardless of the provider’s age.  Most of them are younger than me anyways.

Summary

 I describe myself and other 50+year old triathletes I know as having child-like enthusiasm with adult checkbooks.  We’re good for the sport.