It’s pitch black outside. There’s a foot of snow on the ground. The wind is howling and you’re pretty sure your house just landed on top of the Wicked Witch of the East. There are numerous reasons why us athletes take our training indoors. For me, it’s because I am crunched for time. I’m a working mom whose husband is stationed away from home, so I have to fit my training in whenever I can, which is usually at 4 in the morning while my daughter is sleeping. Our tri room is a life saver for me and where the bulk of my training happens. It allows me to make the most of every minute of my workout session, since I’m not spending any time traveling to/from training locations, while also being available for my daughter.
I am very lucky in that Mike is also a triathlete, so we are in full agreement on making it a priority to devote a space in our home for training. Since we spend so much time in the tri room, it was really important for us to make it as enjoyable as possible. We have his-and-hers bike trainers (so we don't have to swap out bikes) and our fancy new NordicTrack X22i incline trainer/treadmill. There are conflicting opinions on distractions during training, but Team Oyler is firmly in the Pro-TV camp. We even have a bluetooth transmitter connected to the TV so we can listen to the audio on our wireless headphones over the noise of the trainer or treadmill. We also have the triPad, which is our tablet devoted just for our training platforms (Rouvy, Trainer Road, Zwift). An unexpected, but huge, benefit of our tri room is getting to expose my daughter to a healthy and active lifestyle. Maddie has never known life without her mommy and daddy riding their bikes on the trainer or running on the treadmill. As a parent, you're often struggling to balance home life with tri life, and our tri room allows us to turn training time into family time. I know it's not the best quality time, but it really means so much to me when Maddie grabs a pillow, blanket and her iPad and lays next to me while I'm on the trainer.
I know you're reading this post with your calculator and thinking "Geez, this sounds expensive!" Believe me, I get it. Triathlon is not a cheap sport and we all have to prioritize our discretionary expenses. What we currently have in our tri room has been years in the making. We slowly added things over time to create our perfect room. Training is therapeutic for us, so investing in our tri room was an investment in ourselves. Whatever you put in your room, whether its bear bones or fully decked out with surround sound, I cannot recommend enough devoting a space for yourself to spend a little "me" time to recharge your mind, body and soul.