Triathletes vs. Cyclists

June 19, 2018 Brian 18 comments

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Like it or not, triathletes are a large part of the cycling world. Many cyclists are former triathletes who found the true joy of cycling or appreciate the tactical perspective. Of course, triathletes often have a questionable (and not always positive) reputation among the peloton.


Today we not only explore the tumultuous relationship between cyclists and triathletes, we also speak with two professionals to get their perspective.

  • Taylor Spivey is a world-famous ITU triathlete. She has competed internationally and currently has her sights set on success at the 2020 olympics in Tokyo. At events she rides draft legal (employs tactics that cyclists use in road races/criterium). Taylor discusses what triathletes can learn from cyclists on the local group ride and vice versa. She also listens to opinions that many cyclists share when they see a triathlete show up to a group ride.
  • Whitney Burdzilauskas is a triathlete turned cyclist and coach. She specializes in the longer Ironman events which involve riding at your highest threshold for 112 miles per event. We spoke with her at the Oceanside 70.3 event and discussed ways cyclists can train and compete like a triathlete. She also talks about some of the key differences between the two sports. Whitney shares her unique perspective on training with cyclists for triathlons and other races, and tackles the frustrations both athletes have.


Traditionally, cycling culture is not the most accepting group. When it comes to triathletes that want to train or race with cyclists, they approach it as an entirely different sport, even though cycling accounts for a third of a triathlon. As our guests point out on the show, one of the biggest reasons for not seeing eye-to-eye is safety. I’ve personally seen and been on the receiving end of some erratic behavior from triathletes in the peloton. At times it’s a dubious relationship, however both groups can learn from each other. Some of the sport’s best have been crossover athletes!


Whether you’re a triathlete-turned cyclist, a pure cyclist, or a blend of both, this episode offers interesting discourse on the relationship.



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