I arrived back in Miami on July 29th and my first triathlon was just a little over 3 three weeks away (August 21st). In other words it was just around the corner and I felt like there was still a lot of work I needed to do to get ready. I also was not feeling well because of a dry cough I had for the last 3 weeks in Medellin. I did a Covid test both there and also when I came back to Miami and both times I got a negative result. I also went to the pharmacy on a couple of occasions in Medellin to get some medicine, but it was not really helping. Once I was back I did a Telehealth visit (too lazy to go to the office) and the doctor believed it had to do with allergies and prescribed me some over the counter medicine to deal with it. I did not think you could get a dry cough that lasted so long due to allergies, but the medicine worked. With my health back to normal I needed to figure out my bike setup.
The first full day in Miami my dad and I went to Key Biscayne for my first bike ride there and almost immediately I realized that I do not like the handlebars on my bike. I was used to the handlebars on the bike I rented and now that I was back on mine I realized that the handlebars were too wide. My arms did not feel relaxed and comfortable. However, I was not too worried about it since the plan from the start was to mainly use the bike in the TT position with clip-on aero bars. Still sucked though, but as a novice with no previous experience with these bikes I had no clue.
Prior to leaving for Colombia I had bought some clip-on aerobars from Profile Design (Sonic/Ergo/4525a) and tested them out a little bit, but I was not a fan about the whole thing. When on the bars the saddle felt very uncomfortable and I felt like I was going at the pace of a turtle. To hopefully fix this issue my next purchase was the Selle Italia WATT Superflow Kit Carbonio on Amazon for $205.00. I immediately noticed a difference and felt relieved because I was seriously worried that maybe my body was not good for this. Even going over the bumps did not feel that bad compared to the previous saddle.
Now that I had a good saddle I knew I had to do at least a proper basic bike fit. At the time I bought the bike they said it comes with a free bike fit, but all they literally did was adjust the saddle height. At the time I was a complete noob and thought that was all that was needed, but fast forward a couple of months and watching many YouTube videos and I could not believe they called that a bike fit. I looked around the internet for triathlon bike fitters and the range was from $150.00 too close to $400.00. I just wanted a decent basic bike fit so I went with the $150.00 option. By the way this was less than a week prior to my first triathlon, but I honestly was not worried at all about the result. It was my first one and I would be happy with any result because it is just the start of hopefully a long and most importantly fun journey. My goal for now was to have everything in line to at least enjoy training and racing and not put myself through unnecessary pain and potentially bailing out because of that.
I bought a few more things in the weeks leading into the race. A CO2 bike tire inflator, C02 cartridges, a number belt, a pair of no tie shoelaces, and a trisuit. The no tie shoelaces I even put them on the day before the race even though I had heard plenty of times that you should not try out new things on race day or close to it, but this in my opinion was a minor thing that would not affect at all my running.
I did quite a bit of research for the tri suit since I will obviously be wearing it for the entirety of the race and want to make sure it is a good one. I decided to go with the Castelli Sanremo 2 short sleeve suit which cost me $250.00. Not cheap, but for something I only use for race days and is a great suit it is definitely worth it for me.
Lastly, I needed to figure out what my nutrition would be for races and more so for the middle distance and beyond races. It did not take long to realize that gels are expensive especially if you want to use them for training sessions too to get used to them. The best quality and priced gels I found are the SIS electrolyte gels from Amazon for a price of about $34.00 for a box of 30 gels. All the other gels I looked at which included Maurten and PFH were a lot more expensive and therefore out of the running for me.
With that I felt ready for my very first triathlon. The logistics for it almost felt more challenging than the training itself, but it was finally time for the fun to begin.