Yesterday I took my son to do an aquathlon, and it was burning hot.

I’m talking 33 degrees Celsius (or 91 F) and no shade. The sand was scorching and there was no way for the kids to get to the start without frying the soles of their feet on the sand.

So I gave my son some cheap sandals for him to wear as he waited on the dry sand.

Other kids had to bury their feet in the sand where it wasn’t quite so hot.

And a few years ago, I remember in Cebu, Philippines, in front of the Shangri-La hotel the mess of white disposable slippers athletes wore to the swim start.

They were staying in the hotel there and wearing hotel slippers was the best option to walk down to transition and eventually make their way to the beach.

I wasn’t so clued in, and did it barefoot, which wasn’t pleasant.

Another time, I remember having to go into the hotel’s beach bathroom before the swim at Bintan, Indonesia barefoot.

That place was not exactly immaculate, and certainly not anywhere I would want to walk barefoot. Not exactly fun.

Now, in my race checklist, I include disposable sandals as a permanent item.