As triathletes our very nature makes us difficult beasts to buy any kind of gift. Most of us are touched with a little ‘OCD’ further compounded by a sport which demands us to plan, organise and execute with meticulous/irritating detail.
We will also have researched and planned kit purchases with the efficiency of a commercial procurement team making your task even trickier. For this reason we have weighted our recommendations towards highly desirable stocking fillers and what we think is the ultimate triathlon bag to minimise any 'straight to ebay' Christmas gifts!
Orca Transition Bag - RRP £99
This triathlon bag was definitely the brainchild of a triathlete, loaded with clever organisational pockets and sleeves, comfortable to carry ensuring you have the ultimate mobile transition area wherever you are. We loved it so much we had to limit ourselves to 5 areas we particularly appreciated:
Zone 3 Elastic Laces - RRP £7
Controversial for some but they are relatively inexpensive and worth trying. We were sceptical about the benefits until we spent a bit of time (15 minutes max!) setting them up. In our experience, once set up correctly they provide a comfortable and secure fit. They are less bulky than laces and definitely make it easier to get you feet in/out of trainers. Unlike laces, once the trainer is on it very rarely needs any adjustment. A great stocking filler option and definitely worth experimentation.
Body Glide Anti-Chafing Stick - RRP £7-12 (Dependent on stick size)
This is a bit of a no brainer for us, skin lubricant alleviates chafing around your neck in wetsuit swims and in various spots during the run. It is also helpful for a swift T1 transition enabling your wetsuit to slip off your wrists and angles with greater ease. We have used bodyglide happily for years and haven’t felt the need to try anything else.
Zoggs Antifog Lens Cleanser - RRP £7
Foggy goggles can be the bane of a swimmers life and for some reason most of the swimmers we know don’t seem to do anything about it?? Anti-fog products are great and hold the fog at bay for 2-3 sessions. Much more important for open water swimmers as there is nothing more irritating than having a swim constantly interrupted by foggy goggles in deep water.
Bottle Cage Tool Holder - RRP £7-12
This is a bit of a no brainer as it can be used across different bikes and is a convenient way to keep your bike tools together. You can happily fit a couple of tubes, patches, small pump, CO2 pump, levers and multitool in this compact and well protected case. It's also less fiddly than some of the other tri-specific took kits on the market. KISS - Keep it simple stupid!
Finis Hand Paddles - RRP £15
This product is definitely one for triathletes without a swimming background. We trialled these paddles last summer in the pool and give them a big thumbs up. It's well worth chatting with a swimmer or coach about the use of swim training aides to ensure you use them correctly (and don't look like an idiot in the pool!). Just the fact that we had them during pool sessions was enough motivation to incorporate regular technique sessions into our programme.