6/11/21 Canyon

Triathlon Distances

6/11/21 Canyon

All triathlons share the same outline—a swim, followed by a bike ride, and concluded with a run. Here are 4 different triathlon distance events:

Triathlon Distances Canyon Bikes // Triathlon Distance

Triathlon distance options vary between full, half, standard, and sprint. Full triathlons are the longest (140.6 miles in total) and the half (sometimes called 70.3) is logically half the distance of the full. Standard triathlon distances are done in metric (51.5 KM total) and are used during globally sanctioned events. Lastly, the sprint triathlon is the shortest and most accessible of all the distances, at 25.75 KM total.

Full Triathlon Distance
  • Full total distance: 140.6 miles
  • Swim distance: 2.4 miles
  • Bike distance: 112 miles
  • Run distance: 26.2 miles (marathon)

Look for Canyon athletes Lionel Sanders and Jan Frodeno to be competing at these types of triathlons, with the world turning to Kona for the full triathlon championships. Some of the most popular events besides Kona are in Western Australia (Busselton, Australia), Florida (Panama City Beach, FL) and Arizona (Tempe, AZ).

With the race taking place over many hours, every marginal gain counts. You will find athletes optimizing their nutrition, transitions, and body position to save precious energy and cheat the wind. You’ll find Jan Frodeno and Lionel Sanders racing atop our Speedmax.

Triathlon distances Kona
Half Triathlon Distance
  • 70.3 (Half) total distance: 70.3 miles
  • Swim distance: 1.2 miles
  • Bike distance: 56 miles
  • Run distance: 13.1 miles (half marathon)

Just because it’s half as long as the full, don’t mistake it for being easier- half the distance just increases the intensity of each leg, and athletes focus on optimizing power and comfort for lung burning segments.

If you race 70.3 Oceanside (Oceanside, CA), be sure to swing by the Canyon Headquarters and explore our showroom!

Triathlon distances
Standard Triathlon Distance
  • Standard total distance: 51.5 KM
  • Swim distance: 1.5 KM
  • Bike distance: 40 KM
  • Run distance: 10 KM

Standard distance triathlons are a popular choice for the hobbyist endurance athlete looking to take it to the next step. The standard distance triathlon consists of a 1.5 KM swim, 40 KM bike ride, and 10 KM run. Be sure to check out the Wildflower Experience triathlon in Lake San Antonio, CA, the Savageman Triathlon Festival in Deep Creek State Park, MD, and the Lobsterman Triathlon in Brunswick, ME.

If you’re looking for a truly unforgettable triathlon experience, look for the Escape from Alcatraz triathlon. While not officially a standard distance triathlon (2.4 km swim, 29 km bike ride, 12.9 km run) it is of similar distance to a standard triathlon. Swim in the San Francisco Bay, ride around Presidio Park, and finish with a run through Baker Beach Battery at one of the most widely attended triathlons in the world.

Triathlon distances
Sprint Triathlon Distance
  • Sprint total distance: 16 miles
  • Swim distance: .5 mile
  • Bike distance: 12.4 miles
  • Run distance: 3.1 miles (5k)

The sprint triathlon is the perfect event for dipping one’s toes into the world of triathlon. It’s the shortest length triathlon, which makes it the perfect starting point for an athlete of any fitness level.

Some of the larger Tri festivals as mentioned above also feature sprint distance events for beginners, but the best place to look for sprint distance events is with USA Triathlon.

Triathlon distances
Where to make gains for any distance

If you were to sit down and analyze the times of each “leg” for most triathletes, very quickly you’ll realize that the most time-consuming portion of the race is the bike ride; this only gets magnified on longer events.

To truly optimize your overall tri time, look no further than optimizing your ride. When aerodynamics, comfort, and fit are crucial, you need to choose a bike that can check all three boxes. Our Speedmax range has a wide range of adjustability, nutrition integration, and a proven track record for delivering blistering bike times in races. Whether it’s a full length triathlon, or your first standard distance event, a full blown tri bike is sure to provide some of the biggest improvements in your PRs.

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