Triathlon Training and Racing
Tri It Now has
put together a
to use as you prepare for one of our sprint or super-sprint
distance races. Please feel free to use this plan as you schedule
your training sessions to help you get race-ready! Contact
firstname.lastname@example.org, and Coach Andy will work to assist you
as you tailor this plan to your own fitness level.
Check it out!
Personalized Training Plans
When racing a triathlon,
keeping your pace steady is very important in order for
you to reach the finish line feeling strong. There are
many electronic devices designed to help you track your
pace: power meters, heart rate monitors, speedometers,
GPS... The options are plentiful.
Even if you use some sort of monitor, you
should always trust your body and pay close attention to
your rating of perceived exertion, or RPE. You'll find
that you have plenty of energy at the start of a race.
The adrenaline is going strong and you are feeling
fresh. You will likely also have a boost of energy
after the first and second transitions, starting the
bike and the run. Always make sure to keep yourself in
check at these times to keep some energy in the tank to
Keeping a training log is a valuable way to monitor your
training and racing performances. Whether your goals are to
maintain a healthy lifestyle, lose weight, or improve your race
performance, watching your training tendencies over longer
periods of time will allow you to fine tune your training and
get the most out of your efforts.
It is easy to get started. You can use a spiral notebook or a
commercially available triathlon training log book. Record as
many or as few data points as you would like: sport, time
trained, distance, heart rate averages, power data, terrain,
weather conditions... there are many variables that might be
useful to know when looking back on a training session. However,
don't be too ambitious. A good rule of thumb is to make your log
simple enough to keep up with recording your workouts.
Don't underestimate the importance of a quality bicycle fit.
Modern bicycles are adjustable in almost every dimension. Saddle
height and fore/aft, stem length, pitch, and height above the
head tube, crank length, cleat and pedal adjustment... the list
is nearly endless. Navigating the world of bicycle fit on your
own can be a daunting, but not impossible, task. There are a few
things to keep in mind:
1. Comfort is relative - you should be comfortable on your bike,
and you will hear this over and over. But bear in mind that
comfort is relative. And while you very likely could be more
comfortable on your bike than you are currently, it will never
feel like your favorite recliner. It is a piece of sporting
equipment, and it will take some amount of effort to sit on it
and pedal. Sore muscles are part of the deal. Sharp pain and
potential injury should not be.
2. The perfect saddle does not exist - the saddle is the part of
the bike most athletes complain about being painful the most
often. While many sizes and shapes of saddles are now on the
market, there is no saddle that will feel perfect all of the
time. You should aim to find a saddle that is pretty good, most
of the time. Your saddle must allow you to interact with your
bicycle freely and not interfere with the rest of your fit.
Often times a harder saddle that hits you in the 'right' spot is
much better than a softer saddle that will eventually rub you
the wrong way.
3. Don't play 'bicycle limbo' - many triathletes, in their
pursuit of the fastest and most aerodynamic position, try to get
lower and lower with their handlebar height. But be aware: you
should never get so low in the front that you can't maintain the
position for the duration of your longest triathlon distance
*and* get off the bike and run afterwards.
Tri Training Tip:
Make sure to
vary your intensity
your training. Avoid one of the most common triathlete mistakes:
training in the "grey zone." This means going easy when your
training plan calls for easy training, and going hard when your
training plan calls for intense training. Most triathletes often
train in between these intensities. Because they never really go
easy enough to provide themselves the recovery they need, they
are never able to go hard enough in their training to reach new
levels of performance. And because they never truly go hard,
they always feel pretty good on their 'easy' days, which then
turn into 'grey zone' days. Break the cycle an give yourself the
recovery you need on your easy days!