Triathletes love stuff - and I’m a triathlete. I find that people often want to know what kind of “stuff” I use daily. As a creature of habit, I find myself using a lot of the same items every day. Whether coaching or training, these items are ones I touch multiple times a day, or at the very least, multiple times per week. I’m not saying they’re the “best” on the market. It’s just what I use. They are good, and I use them because they are good. You might be able to find a better deal or something you prefer more, but these are my go-to items. I’ve included a link to each product below so that it’s easy for you to take a look. Some of them are Amazon affiliate links and others are simply links to the product website. None of these companies or products sponsor me personally, though ROKA does sponsor our Team Paragon and all our team members (myself included) get 30% off ROKA products. Check out these four items for gift ideas for your triathlete!
Number 1 Holiday Gift for Triathletes! - The Pour-over
Endurance athletes are quite possibly the most sleep-deprived humans on the planet. That’s unfortunate, because the amount of exercise they do in a regular day requires copious amounts of sleep according to the laws of biology. Fortunately, endurance athletes also defy the human laws of biology… that is until their hormones get out of whack and all of a sudden everyone has Low T.
Caffeine is a proven performance enhancer. It’s also proven to help keep you from falling asleep at your desk in the middle of the afternoon after a morning workout and skipping breakfast. It’s proven, along with crippling anxiety, to help you have a successful bowel movement (or 7) on race morning. It’s a main food group for any athlete seriously training for endurance sports and when you need coffee, you need it 5 minutes ago.
The pour-over has become my favorite method of brewing over the last few years. It’s incredibly cheap and you can make incredibly good coffee with a simple $12 piece of porcelain. There is enough intricacy with getting the weight and pour speed right that it makes me feel fancy and like a coffee aficionado. When in reality, my 3-year-old nephew could probably learn how to do it if I spent 10 minutes teaching him how.
There is also the opportunity to purchase a few more gadgets for an “enhanced” coffee pour-over experience, which serves the added benefit of partially satisfying my eternal lust for stuff.
If you get a pour-over, you're going to need a few other items as well
Some Tasy Coffee (Thanks to Zack Dorman for the info on this one. I now order their coffee on the reg!
Swimming Gift Idea - Foggies
I was a naysayer before I tried the foggies. Though I didn’t grow up swimming club when I was young, I’m a bit of a purist when it comes to swimming. I still use the pace clock. I wear my garmin at practice but don’t lap it every 25 meters. My pull buoy is moldy and my speedo is slightly saggy. So I’ve never even noticed that my goggles get foggy in practice. I’m used to simply dipping them in the water, rinsing them, and then continuing until I repeat the cycle. But oh boy do triathletes hate when their goggles get foggy! I’ve had dozens of athletes ask me what I do about foggy goggles and my response has always been ruthlessly unsatisfying to them: I don’t do anything.
Enter “Foggies.” Another athlete introduced them to me at the pool and I have to say that I’m hooked. They do work! Your goggles really don’t fog and I kind of like it. They are especially handy before a race since swimming into a fog with foggy goggles and a foggier brain is definitely challenging. Now, you can eliminate one of those fogs with foggies.
Cycling Gift Idea - DynaPlug
With the rise of tubeless tire technology, there is also a rise in people who don’t know how to change a flat tire. The cool thing about tubeless is that 9 times out of 10 a full tube change isn’t necessary. For small holes, ensuring
your sealant is topped off will help seal and stop the tire from going flat. If the hole is bigger, the sealant may not be able to seal all the way, and keeping one of these handy devices in your back pocket on every ride can be a ridesaver. If a hole is spewing sealant and refusing to close, all you have to do is insert the tip, pull it out, and voila! Carrying a spare CO2 cartridge is a good idea too but you’ll have to figure out a way to source that yourself.
The DynaPlug is a little pricey and it's not carbon BUT it is super light and far cheaper than an uber.
Along with carrying a Dynaplug, you may need a few other items to help avoid flats.
Running Gift Idea - Paragon Socks
I would be a terrible business owner if I didn’t shamelessly plug some of our apparel on this list. But the cold, hard truth is that shameless plug or not, these socks are some of the best and cleanest looking you can find. While the Keepers of the Cog allow for any color cycling sock you prefer, we secretly know that white socks give off a chill vibe that’s unmatched in cycling. We’ve scientifically lactate-tested these bad boys and know unequivocally that a 7-watt boost is guaranteed when you slide them on and draw them up to the appropriate height. Take your marginal gains and be glad you don’t have to train harder to get faster.
Just wear the right socks.
Merry Christmas and Suffer Faster from all of us at Paragon Training!