I always used to tell Philippa is that one of the reasons I loved running was because you hardly needed any kit. An old pair of trainers, some old tshirts and shorts and you were done. You could go on a few runs, see if you like it and then go mental and buy a pair of trainers. Tie in a running top and you were pretty much done. That would pretty much be all of your kit for all seasons. That’s how I started and it was ace.

Triathlons. Are. Not. Like. That.

So what do you need to train for a triathlon? Well the swim stuff is easy you need; goggles, a wetsuit, couple of sports towels, some regular swimming shorts. Maybe some of the weird long swimming shorts (jammers). For the run bit you need your regular run stuff, trainers, tops, base layers, gloves, shorts. Easy again. The bike? Oh my god the bike.

Cycling is not like the other sports. Cycling is basically a massive hole that you can throw all of your money and time into. It doesn’t matter how much money you spend you can always spend more. And wow can you spend a lot of time looking at the many new and wonderful things that you now find you need(want) to buy. And researching them. And looking at the reviews. And finding the best deal. After the important stuff – the bike, the helmet this is so far what I have got:

Pedals, cleats, shoes, front light, back light, GPS watch holder, cadence sensor for GPS watch, water bottles, water bottle holders, track pump, grease, dry chain lube, spare inner tubes, turbo trainer, wheel riser for turbo trainer, videos to train with for turbo trainer, gloves, chain cleaner, name stickers, padded shorts, padded tights, more padded shorts, inner gloves, wind proof top, over shoes. And there is still more to get. Like a lock. Or clip on tri bars. And maybe special brushes and cleaning fluid for the bike. And well I could do with a proper waterproof cycling top. And I really need more padded shorts. And a CO2 pump. Maybe a saddle bag for race day. It’s happening again!

Last week at work I looked under my desk at work and there were four empty Wiggle boxes. Four. I’m getting fat on all the little bags of Haribo they send.

So lesson number three; training for an ironman is like a journey – and much like going on a journey with Philippa – you’re going to need a lot of stuff.