The Maneater

Club Sport of the Week: Triathlon Club looks to make a splash this season

Club President Rachel Taylor: “We work out together, eat together and socialize together.”

A 6.2-mile run seems like a daunting task for some. Tack on a .93-mile swim and 24.8-mile bike race before that, and it’s a normal race day for the Triathlon Club.

“This team is a great environment for athletes of all abilities, from the seasoned triathlete to total beginner,” President Rachel Taylor said. “Being on this team means you always have a training partner to do a workout with, and more importantly you have a great group of friends who eventually become like a family.”

Racing isn’t everything for the Triathlon Club. For some, it is a great way to make longtime friends.

“It’s very fun to be on the team,” Vice President Rachael Marlar said. “Everyone gets along with everyone. It’s such a diverse group of people. We all love to hang out with each other. I basically spend all of my time with the Triathlon Club or doing something with the triathlon.”

Along with practicing five days a week, the team travels together for races. They plan to participate in triathlons all over the country, the most anticipated of which is the Triathlon Nationals in Alabama.

“Everyone always has a good time [at the Triathlon Nationals],” last year’s team captain Colin Gibson said. “There are over 200 teams there from all over the country.”

The Triathlon Club kicked off its season at the Sedalia Duathlon, which was made up solely of running and biking segments. The team members were led by Alan Lowe, who won the men’s short course, and Claire Spradling, who won the women’s short course. Gibson and Brendan Marsh finished first and second in the men’s long course, and Taylor placed second in the women’s long course.

The Duathlon was a good start to the season, but Taylor sees a lot she can still build on.

“I would really like to improve my swimming,” Taylor said. “It’s by far my weakest discipline. I would also like to work on my mental toughness. Sometimes it’s hard for me to push myself past a certain point, and if I can get myself to work harder, I’ll get a lot better.”

The club hoped to use the Duathlon to ease in newcomers. New members have mostly running experience, so they are taught how to swim and ride a bike in a group of people.

Early on, most of the practices are skills-oriented and teach the basics of each of the three specialties. Some of the skills taught are drafting on a bike, turning and skills in the pool.

Monday practices are used to work on the skills taught at the beginning of the season. Tuesday and Thursday are for running, Wednesday is for swimming, and Sunday is for biking.

“You get out of it what you put into it,” Marlar said. “If you want to have fun and don’t really care about the times or any of that, perfectly fine. If you do care about the times and want to get better, there’s definitely ways to improve, and we will help you with that. No matter the skill level, either expert or beginner, it’s perfect for everyone.”

Contact info

If you wish to get in contact with the Triathlon Club, email muclubtriathlon@mail.missouri.edu with questions. You can also follow the Triathlon Club on Twitter @trizou and on Instragram @mizzoutriathlon.

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