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Everyone has to go through ‘first race nerves’ and hardly anyone breezes through their first triathlon. As beginners, there is a lot to learn and take note of. Try not to let the anxiety get to your head and follow these tips to make your first attempt is a little more smooth sailing.

1.    Fuel up a day before the race
Pay extra attention to what you put in your mouth 24 hours before the actual race. Try reducing the portions. Go easy on grains and sugar, and include protein in all your meals.

2.    Eat two-and-a-half to three hours before the race
Don’t starve before your race, but don’t eat outrageously either. Stay away from the pancakes and donuts. Keep your meal to 25-30 percent protein, 50 percent carbs and 20 percent fat.

3.    Don't drink too much water
It might sound silly but only drink to quench your thirst. However, eight minutes before the race, start sipping your energy drink or eat some energy gel instead. You will find those calories helpful.

4.    Know where to transit
Transition is a big part of a race, so make sure you find a structure to help you recognize your placement during the race. This is especially helpful if you’re racing the route for the first time.

5.    Give it all you’ve got, but observe
Sometimes we forget that the most important thing is not to win but to learn. Race your heart out but remember to also look around and observe how the veteran participants make their way through the course. You might just learn a thing or two!

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