I wasn’t a huge fan of geometry and trigonometry in high school. My issue was with the proofs; whatever I was being asked to prove seemed obvious to me and hence a “waste of time”. I now recognize that the discipline and logic involved are indeed fine tools to have at one’s disposal.
Despite my adolescent disdain for proofs, I do have an affinity for geometry, for shapes, for symmetry, and the nature of the relationships involved. This comes up in my triathlon training. I often find myself considering the relationships between the different events in a triathlon. How do I relate the swimming, bicycling and running? Distance, time spent, effort involved?
Recently, I’ve been taking a time-based view. There’s the equilateral triangle: the same amount of time, say 30 minutes, spent on each event. I rather like this idea and am experimenting with this as a winter training entertainment, doing 1 or 2 of these each month, gradually progressing the amount of time on each leg.
Two Sundays ago, I ran my first experiment. I started with biking, and did one of my usual routes on the mesa, ending back at the rec center. Took 36 minutes. Good enough. Then I ran, and this took just a hair under 35 minutes. So far so good. Time to swim. Yeah, I know this is not the usual order of events, but its the most practical as far as weather conditions and pool availability are concerned. Into the pool I went. Out in ten minutes, driven by leg cramps that kept recurring.
I spent the next 20 minutes in the steam room, stretching everything out, particularly my back, hips and legs. The cramping eased, and I’ve done fairly well since. Memo to self: perhaps a better warmup and more attention to hydration before doing three different events would be prudent. It will be interesting to see what happens the next time I do a triangle triathlon. And should I master the equilateral time based tri, the number of possible options to pursue appears to approach infinity!