What is a Sprint Triathlon?
Why You Should Sprint a Triathlon
Training for a Sprint Triathlon
What’s Your Fitness Level?
The Training Program
Weeks 1 and 2:
Weeks 1 and 2 focus on building up your endurance and priming your fitness for what’s to come. As a general rule, don’t worry about following the schedule perfectly. Life gets in the way sometimes. But you should be able to follow through at least 90% of the time.
Weeks 3 and 4:
Weeks 3 and 4 will feature your first timed runs. This is where you can first start to work on your speed. Pace yourself, but try to run a little bit faster each time. The same principle applies to your bike rides; increase your intensity each time, but do so within your comfort level.
Weeks 5 to 8:
During weeks 5 to 8, you’ll see some changes in the program. Here’s where the endurance element of your training will really start to kick in. Additionally, you’ll also be incorporating a higher intensity into the exercises, so it’s not just about time or distance.
With the timed swims, you should be going for an all-out effort. Your training will be split into intervals. For example, swim for 1 minute as fast as you can, and then take a minute to rest. Repeat as many times as you can, increasing/decreasing your intervals where appropriate. You’ll find that the more you do these intervals, the longer you’ll be able to sustain maximal effort, and the less rest you’ll need overtime.
The same principle applies to the shortened bike rides, identified by the asterisk above. Challenge yourself with a variety of paces, to improve muscular performance. For example, go as fast as you can for a minute, followed by a slower pace for two minutes.
You’ll also note that from now onwards, there will be the occasional two-day rest. These are crucial to ensure that your body can recover properly as the training gets tougher.
* shortened bike rides
Weeks 9 to 12:
Weeks 9 to 11 will undoubtedly be the toughest weeks of the training program. But as you’ll discover, the body is remarkably adaptable. Keep up the intensity, try not to miss any days, and make sure to recover on your days off. If you feel up to it, you might consider replacing one of your bike/run days with a 40k or 50k bike workout—this will help you get a feel for how much sustained endurance you have.
During this time you’ll also see a combination of biking and running on Sundays. This is known as a brick workout. The purpose of the brick workout is to get your body accustomed to running after cycling. This will be the most challenging portion of the triathlon, so it’s a good idea to adapt your body to this activity beforehand.
Week 12 is competition week. You’ll notice that the intensity drops just before the event. This is to keep your muscles ready for the triathlon, without exhausting them beforehand.
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Race Day Nutrition
Janice’s First Triathlon Experience
Did You Know?
The First Step