How do I take my wetsuit off?

Most of my athletes swear by Suit Juice -- it is a lubricant which you spray into the arms and legs of the wetsuit when putting on. It helps getting the wetsuit both on and off.

As you exit the water, un-Velcro the neck and pull the zipper all the way down. As you are running to transition, pull one arm out and then the other. THEN remove your goggles and swim cap (if you do it first, you only have one free hand to get out of the wetsuit). Pull the wetsuit down to your waist as you continue to run to transition. Once at your bike, push the wetsuit down to about your knees. Step on the wetsuit with one foot, and pull the opposite leg out. Now step on the wetsuit with that free foot, and pull the other leg out. Toss the wetsuit toward the front of your bike, put on your bike gear, and run your bike toward the bike exit.

The most important thing is to practice, practice, practice this. Almost every time you open-water swim you should practice your exit by running out of the water and removing your wetsuit as you'll do during the race.

Wetsuit Removal: As soon as you exit the water from the swim you should start removing your wetsuit. To facilitate this, apply a lubricant (Aquaphor) to the neck, arms, and legs of the wetsuit before competition. As you are running towards your transition spot undo the Velcro at the neck, grab the cord attached to your zipper, and unzip your wetsuit fully. Continue running and pull your wetsuit off your upper arms, then off each individual lower arm (this should be easy with the lubricant on them). Run with your wetsuit hanging down at your waist until you get to your transition spot. After dumping your cap and goggles, you should pull the wetsuit down from your thighs, and then step out of each leg (once again lubricant helps a lot).

Getting Gear On: If it is a wetsuit swim, you can wear your race gear under the wetsuit. For a non-wetsuit swim, men can put their singlet in their swimsuit and pull it up as they run to transition. If this is the case, as soon as you get to your bike grab your helmet, put it on, and then run with your bike to the mount line. For a longer event it may be preferable to change into a specific cycling outfit and to put cycling shoes on before mounting the bike. If this is the case put the jersey and shorts on first, then the helmet, and finally the shoes. This requires more time but the key is to do it fluidly and in the right order.

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