Want to sign up for a triathlon but no idea which one to go for? Here are Outsider’s top triathlons in Ireland for beginners.

Taking up multi-discipline events like the triathlon is a great way to broaden your skill set and build fitness. Variety is the spice of life after all. However, it can be difficult to know where to start. Especially when at the beginning everyone involved in the sport seems to be superhuman. These triathlons for beginners in Ireland are just the thing you need.

Before working out where to make your debut in the triathlon scene it’s good to know how they’re categorised. Triathlon Ireland divides its events into five different types, dependant on distance, starting with ‘Try-a-Tri’ and working up to ‘long’.

Try-a-Tri: 250m swim, 6km cycle, 3km run

Sprint: 750m swim, 20km cycle, 5km run

Standard: 1500m swim, 40km cycle, 10km run

Middle: 1900m swim, 90km cycle, 21.1km run

Long: 3800m swim, 180km cycle, 42.2km run

When starting out consider beginning at the shorter distances and working your way up. Ensure that you are comfortable managing each discipline at its respective distance, especially the swim. With over 170 triathlons taking place in Ireland every year there is no shortage of events to take part in. Pick one and work towards the distances as a goal. Here are some of our favourites if you’re just starting out.

1. Moby Dick

Distance: 750m swim, 19km cycle, 6.1km run

Best beginner triathlons ireland moby dick
Image: Dave O’Brien

Taking place at the end of September, this sprint triathlon is one of the last events on Ireland’s triathlon calendar before the winter sets in properly. The weighting of the events is tipped slightly towards runners but is still manageable so don’t expect this event to be your personal white whale. Because of its position in the calendar, it’s a perfect event to train for through the summer before putting yourself to the test to round off the year.

More info: Moby Dick Triathlon

2. Tri Athy

Distance: 250m swim, 20km cycle, 3.8km run

Best triathlons for beginners in Ireland Triathy
Image: Inpho Photograpahy

The Tri Athy event caters to triathletes of all levels and even offers events at Olympic and double Olympic distance. It kicks off with a 250m swim down the River Barrow. Following the flow of the water, it will ease you in gently. With the four different distances available you’ll be able to keep coming back to the event and moving up the events as you improve.

More info: Tri Athy

3. Mullaghmore Triathlon

Distance: 300m or 750m swim, 19.6km cycle, 5km run

Best triathlons for beginners in ireland Mullaghmore triathlon

The Mullaghmore Triathlon offers a stunning backdrop from the moment the race kicks off on the sandy beach. The swim is available in 300m or 750m flavours depending on your preference, while the cycle and run follow stunning routes with plenty of views of the glorious coastline to distract you from the task at hand.

More info: Mullaghmore Triathlon

4. The Omey Dash

Distance: 750m swim, 24km cycle, 5km run

The Omey Dash triathlon takes place in the wild, rugged beauty of Connemara. The Dash is a sprint triathlon that starts off with a 750m swim off the beach, before cycling through the picture postcard villages of Connemara and a run along Omey strand. The race culminates in Sweeney’s Pub where you’ll be able to toast your success.

More info: Omey Dash

5. Tri the Hook

Distance: 750m swim, 22.2km cycle, 5.3km run

best triathlons in Ireland for beginners tri the hook

The route is far more challenging than the distances suggests with the cycle and the run taking in plenty of climbs along the cliffs around Baginburn Bay. The scenery is fantastic and very dramatic making for a great backdrop as you conquer the course.

More info: Tri the Hook

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  1. Tri Coach Bjorn
    January 1, 2018

    Hi Guys,great info but i would recomend pool based triathlons first for my beginners that i coach. The openwater element is very daunting for beginners as well as not owning a wetsuit. Something like Joey Hannon in UL, North Tipp sprint tri is ideal.

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