It’s a common misconception that all triathletes are Type-A, neurotic freaks obsessed with working out and afraid of chaos. Sure, the discipline of training requires some focus, but the truth is that there is such thing as a Type B triathlete, who operates more on the fly and is A-OK with missing a workout. Most of us lie somewhere in the middle. (I’m a solid B+ I think).
Which one are you? Answer the 10 questions below. Then see the answers below to find out how you stack up. And hey, this quiz is just for fun. If you want sciency results, consult a sports psychology PhD student who still needs a dissertation topic.
1. You’re riding the trainer. What do you choose to watch?
A. A Sufferfest video because you can totally dial in your FTP and track wattage.
B. Miracle, because the inspiring albeit cliche underdog team comeback thing still helps to motivate you.
C. South Park: Bigger, Longer, Uncut because you figure getting on the trainer is good enough, even if you stop every 5 minutes to sing along to “Kyle’s Mom” with Cartman.
D. Wait…you lost me at “you’re riding the trainer.”
2. What is the first question you are most likely to ask about the newest Garmin?
A. Is it compatible with my Quark?
B. How much does it cost?
C. How do I turn it on?
D. What’s a Garmin?
3. My typical race morning includes:
A. Waking up 4 hours before gun time, preparing a breakfast of 300g oatmeal with 1tsp of agave nectar and 2 Tbsp almond butter, arriving at transition 2 hours early to get primo parking, and setting my backup cycle computer in case my Garmin fails to pick up signal.
B. Spending a good hour the night before figuring out the exact drive time so I can set my alarm clock for the latest possible minute, stumbling to the coffee pot, getting dressed, grabbing a Bonk Breaker, listening to Against Me on the drive over mainly to stay awake, and praying I have enough time to get my packet and poo before I have to be at the swim start.
C. Arriving early at transition to get a good spot and scope out the race course, and of course to chat with my buddies doing the race. I may or may not have stopped for an Egg McMuffin or 4 on the way.
D. I can’t remember. The last time I raced, aluminum was the hot new bike material.
4. My thoughts on Master’s Swimming:
A. Can’t live without it. Best way to start the day and keep the edge on my swim technique. I love being done with my workout before the rest of the world wakes up.
B. It’s really helped me out …when I actually make it to the pool on time. I wish I could go more.
C. I prefer to swim on my own so I can jam out to my Swim pod.
D. It starts at what time?!?!?!?
5. When I get online, the site I’m most likely to go to first is:
A. Strava to see how I stack up against TriStud123 on the local TT course.
B. Facebook to post the details of my last workout.
C. triathlete.com to see who won the latest big name race.
D. Buzzfeed to see the top 789 things only 90’s teenagers can relate to.
6. How do you choose your racing kit?
A. It has to be red. Red is scientifically proven to be faster.
B. Whatever fits me best and gets the best reviews.
C. Matchy, matchy baby. Preferably with a side of glitter.
D. I found this on clearance at TJ Maxx.
7. Which song would get you most pumped pre-race?
A. “One Shot” by Eminem
B. The Rocky Theme
C. “Fly Around My Pretty Miss” (or anything) by Built to Spill
D. “(I Wanna Be) Sedated” by the Ramones
8. What’s your training plan like?
A. I do what my coach says and upload it to Training Peaks. I like having the details planned out and knowing I’m making steady progression.
B. I follow the training plans from Triathlete, 220 Triathlon, or Beginner Triathlete. They’re easy to follow and keep me motivated.
C. I sketch out a general plan each week but tweak it along the way. If I feel more like running than biking one day, I’ll switch out workouts.
D. I pretty much do whatever group rides and runs are going on.
9. The following best characterizes my diet:
A. No gluten, no dairy, no alcohol, no caffeine.
B. I eat lots of fruit & veg, lean protein, whole grains, with the occasional beer and fro-yo post workout.
C. I’ve been veggie all my life. It works.
D. I’ve been known to eat sausage biscuits mid-ride.
10. How would your friends & family describe your relationship with triathlon?
A. They’ve gotten used to smelling chlorine when I approach and can’t remember seeing me without compression socks on.
B. They know it’s an easy topic of conversation with me and can count on a “yes” at least half the time when they ask “are you racing this weekend?”
C. They’re glad I have a hobby that doesn’t involve the word “extreme.”
D. I have a relationship with triathlon?
You are a hard core, uber-disciplined Type A+ triathlete. You love precision and base your performance off of data and little else. You can’t stand spontaneity because it’s hard to explain. Others truly admire your dedication but may find your rigidity overbearing or easy to chuckle at, but you’re not here to make friends 😉 While you thrive on this highly structured system, be careful not to lose sight of the fun side of triathlon. A little beer won’t kill you.
You’re a diligent, committed Type B+/A- triathlete. You like to have a plan, but you keep it pretty simple. You train hard and strive for excellence, but you’re going to keep your day job. You’re the Age-Grouper many others look up to and ask for advice, because you’re not as intimidating as your Type A+ counterparts, but be careful not to blow off your accomplishments as “no big deal” or “you’re just having fun” because it annoys those who are working their butts off to be almost as fast as you.
You’re a Type B triathlete, loving the sport but not taking it too seriously. You may be in it for the social and health benefits, or just a more free-spirited personality that shies away from too much structure. You’ll keep tri-ing as long as it’s fun and then move on to something else. Others may always see you as the “recreational” triathlete and this may alienate you from some of the more hard-core age-groupers, but you really don’t give a $hit.
You’re so casual about triathlon that you refuse to be “Typed.” And if we were to give you a type, you’d just laugh and tell us to go foam roll ourselves or something. You do a race here and there, but mainly just like to hang out in the bike shop chit-chatting with the mechanics. Others may even be surprised to see you at a triathlon, but will be glad you’re there. Unless you up and kick all their asses despite not training. But since you’re buying at the after-party, it’s all good.