How do you successfully train for 3 different endurance sports, hold a job, spend time with your family and have a life? Amateur triathlon training can be a very confusing and daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be.
Here are some basic training principles that should be incorporated into any successful program and a “Sample Week” of what those principles might look like.
All programs should be:
1. Specific to your Event. Your training plan needs to makes sense with your ultimate performance goal. If you are training for the Nation’s Olympic distance race, you wont need to be putting in 3 + hr sessions on the bike like you would if you were training for an Ironman.
2. Challenging your Limits (Overload Principle). Your training plan needs to take you to places physically that are challenging. Your muscles need to experience fatigue and be challenged beyond what is normal. Growth happens when your body adapts to what it once wasn’t capable of.
3. Progressive. Albert Einstein once said the definition of insanity was “Doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.” Your training program needs to change and the the workload needs to increase so that you can keep seeing progress. Its a good idea to build in “Test” events to evaluate how far you have come and adjust your training accordingly. A good rule of thumb for evaluation is every 4 weeks.
4. Varied. It is very important to work in different styles and types of workouts. You shouldn’t be running 5 miles at race pace, for every workout, for 12 weeks. Not only is that type of training boring and can burn and athlete out, but it is not an efficient way to train. Training efficiency is one of the most important things you can have on your side when training for a triathlon and hoping to maintain a life.
The following is an example training week for LRZ’s Triathlon Team.
Monday (Run and Strength)
-Gym: Leg focus day with Max Effort Back Squats
-Run: 10 min easy jog/Walk Warm up.
10 x 800m @ Goal Pace with 1 min rest in between each 800.
Tuesday (Bike/Transition Run)
-Bike: 15 min easy spin in a high gear warm up.
15 x 1 Mile @ Goal Pace with .4 mile easy spin.
-Run: Do right after the Bike, practice your transition, 2 miles @ 70% of your Max Heart Rate.
Wednesday (Swim and Strength)
-Gym: Push Focus with Max Effort Bench Press
-Swim: 400 Swim, 200 Kick, 200 Pull Warm Up
4 x 400 yrd on 1:10 pace with :30 sec rest.
10 x 25 Swim/25 Kick, Focus on Form and Efficiency
Thursday (Swim Speed Work)
-Swim 10 x 50 Even Pace Pull on 1 min.
50 yrds @ Goal Pace + 25 yrds easy Kick: Repeat until you can no longer maintain Goal Pace and proper form.
Friday (OFF/ REST DAY)
Saturday: (Bike Time Trial)
-Bike: 15 Mile Time Trial, Maintaining even pace and form.
Sunday: (Run Time Trial)
-Run: 10 K Time Trial, Maintaining even pace and form.