It’s no surprise; the night before a youth triathlon is probably harder on the parent than it is on the youth athlete! And if it is your kid’s first triathlon, well hold on. You’ll run the gamut of emotions, especially if you are not already a triathlete!
The night before the race, stay calm. Young athletes can easily pick-up on your vibe. If you are nervous, they will be nervous. If you are calm, cool and collected, they will be too. If your athlete’s confidence is wavering, that’s normal! Don’t worry, get upset or frustrated. Just remind your athlete how much they’ve prepared. They are STRONG! They are READY! Remind them how great an achievement this will be when they cross the Finish (not to mention Kemah has great medals for the kids!!!).
But most of all? Most of all, tell them how much you love to watching them swim, bike and run, enjoying the sport of triathlon.
Sometime during the evening, if you can keep their attention, have them do a race visualization. Lay down with them and have them imagine in their minds exactly what they will do; how they will swim, how they will move through their first transition, how they will bike, how they will handle their second transition, and how they will run… and last, how will they cross the finish line?!? What’s that finishing pose going to look like? Studies have shown that sports visualization makes for a more confidential athlete on race day.
Remind Athlete’s to create and use a checklist to pack there transition bag. Also, remember, athletes wear their tri kit for all three disciplines (no undergarments, except sports bras for girls).
At a minimum Athletes should be packing:
A great, positive attitude!!!
A brightly colored small towel for Transition
Swim Cap (one usually comes in the race packet, but bring an extra!)
Goggles (bring an extra, if you have a 2nd pair)
Towel for drying off
Socks (if you wear them)
Running Belt for your Race Bib (On The Run, Sun and Ski, Bike Barn, Webster Bike all have these)
Safety Pins (If you will pin your race number to your shirt. (be careful if you’re pinning your kit!)
Athlete’s should have a balanced dinner and a good night’s sleep. For the Kemah Youth Triathlon, packet pick-up is from 5am to 6:45 am at the race site in the big, white tent. Arrive in plenty of time for stress free prep. Realize you will need to:
Park your car and Walk to transition
Wait in line to pick-up your Packet
Wait in line to get body marked (or apply tattoos)
Put sticker on helmet and number on bike (before entering transition)
Note where the Bike Out and Run Out transition exits are
Meet up for the team rally with Coach Chris at 6:15 in Transition
Head to the swim start!
The NextGen team is excited to see the next generation of triathletes in action!