Social media has played an integral role in my training regimen and has been a great motivator as my training and racing has ebbed and flowed over the last number of years. I truly get motivated looking through my Instagram feed, seeing all these familiar faces, some friends and acquaintances I know and train with frequently, others are part of my online family. I watch their photos and videos of their journey, showing themselves training in pools, on their bikes, running road races and of course, sharing the always ‘impeccable’ race photos!!

Social Media inspires me to train harder, focus more; and keeps me accountable on those early morning wake ups! I always try and remember the mantra of ‘just show up’. Sharing my journey on social media has also motivated me to not miss a workout, try my best and maybe even beat some time or distance goals by getting encouragement from my online triathlon family with all their likes and motivating comments.

Learning about Triathlon can be daunting at first. There are so many terms that integrate the ‘private’ languages of the running, cycling and swimming communities. And to add to that, triathlon has its own jargon that is unique to the combination sport! We do ‘Brick’ training; talk about M-dot; Sprints, Olympics, Halfs and Fulls; ‘aero’ positions; aero bars etc… Social media is a great place to passively learn and get information on gear, training techniques, open water swimming locations, group events – on and off the bike, training rides and so on… It is also a great place to meet local triathletes online and eventually see them either while training or on the morning of a race, setting up in transition as well as at the post-race festivities.

When it comes down to it, the best place to immerse yourself into the community is to participate within it. Sign up for races like TTF, as it’s in the heart of the city, which makes it very accessible, plus you get to race your bike on the Gardiner Expressway and DVP!!! TTF gets you epic race photos with the CN Tower in the background, which by the way, is a perfect photo to post on Instagram to be immersed with lots of love from the online Triathlon community!!

No community is more closely connected with passion, gear talk, jargon than the small but growing world triathlon community. Within that, we have a great close-knit community here in Toronto. We have amateur athletes sweating it out every day in the pools, lakes, streets and gyms across the GTA.

I’ve met a number of impressive triathletes in the pool and on the road. Even this morning, I met a triathlete in the pool at UTM who has been to Kona five times!!! Getting inspired, is definitely not only available on social media, but online you can see all your tri-friends new gear purchases, learn about different training techniques and get some serious inspiration from our community of local triathletes.

So, if you are new to Triathlon, search out the hashtags (below are a few of my favourites), make some online friends and get motivated to train and then get out there and immerse yourself within our Tri-community around the GTA!!!

See you online and out in the pools, lakes and on the streets around the GTA!

Jay – @onelifelivingit

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