Two weeks ago Andrew Talansky had a career moment. Considering the 28-year-old has spent the better part of the past decade propelling himself into the position as one of the top U.S. cyclists, having a career moment at this point is rather notable. This time, it wasn’t on a mountaintop finish or turning in the fastest time trial, it started off with a 1,500-meter open water swim followed by a 22-mile bike ride and capped with a 10k run at the 10th Annual Marin County Triathlon. Talansky is now officially, a triathlete.
“On the morning of the race it really dawned on me, I had never actually done a triathlon”, said Andrew Talansky, Topical Edge athlete and the biggest name to turn their attention to the sport of triathlon in recent memory. “I have been fortunate enough to get a great group of partners together to support this project of me moving over to tri, so I’m really happy to have gotten the first one under my belt–now I can actually call myself a triathlete.”
It’s only been a handful of weeks since Talansky retired from pro cycling and announced his next sporting endeavor as a triathlete, with a goal of making the start line at the IRONMAN World Championships in Kona next October. So when he lined up at the Olympic-distance Marin County Triathlon it was a major step forward in his new career path.
“My goal was to go and get the experience in a local triathlon in a low stress environment. It was completely grass roots, but I was honestly as nervous as I was going into my first Tour de France. It was a totally new environment and a new beginning”, Talansky explained.
Maybe you chalk it up to beginner’s luck, or the simple fact that Talansky is a world class athlete, either way, his tri career is off to a flying start after taking the win in his first triathlon. “It went well, better than expected”, he told us. “I ended up leading the swim and that was not in my pre-race thought pattern at all. I knew I would put in a good bike ride, so the other parts exceeded my expectations.”
LEARN BY DOING
Even though Talansky walked away with the win, albeit on a smaller scale that what he’ll be facing next season, there were a couple things he learned by just going through the process. “Dialing in the pre-race setup will be important. The biggest error was dropping one of my two Clif Shot gels as soon as I jumped on the bike. It was only a two hour event, so nutrition doesn’t play as much of a part as it will in a half or full IRONMAN where you’ll definitely pay for a nutritional bobble later on.”
Now that he literally got his feet wet, we wondered if there were any second thoughts on his career change. “It rekindled the motivation and passion...passion in the sense that you really enjoy what you’re doing. During the run I was thinking how this was what I felt early on in bike racing and when time trialing.”
Going into the winter, when Talansky would normally be packing his bags, saying goodbye to his family, and heading off to a team training camp, he’ll instead be sticking around home in Napa to build the base he says that’s needed to handle the training program required to be competitive at IRONMAN. “We’ll see how my body handles the training. From here on, it’s all new. The journey begins now.”