Success with Stamina
Success with Stamina
A little blog about being a triathlon coach. Here you'll find a little diary about my activities as a coach, the performances of the people I work with and my thoughts and opinions on what makes athletes faster for longer.

Changing times

AndyBby AndyBMar 5th 2010
The weather here has been very kind of late. The sun has been shining, the sky is blue and the birds are singing on the way to the pool at 6:30 as the sun rises but before I get too philosophical this post is more about your training.

With many people starting to ramp up for race season training programs are changing to become more race specific. So what is the best type of training to do at this time of year?

Well this obviously depends on your target races. If you want to be on your best form for any individual race then you need to a) know which race this is and b) train for the specific demands of this event. Unfortunately no matter how hard you try you will not achieve your full potential at all distances from sprint through to Ironman if you try to be good at all of them, each needs it's own specific training. To be clear here; I am not suggesting athletes should only do one distance per year/season. Of course not, most of us do this as a pastime (yes, that's right for fun, enjoyment to make us smile!!). I have, in the past, coached athletes who have raced many distances in a season and I am always happy to continue to do this. What I am saying is that if you want to be your very best at a particular event or distance then you need to train specifically for that event or distance. I'll also leave that soapbox to one side for now too.

Many people know cycles within periodisation as base and build (characterised by the excellent books by Joe Friel) others know them as general fitness and race specific fitness or general conditioning and race preparation. The name doesn't really matter what does matter is the training that you do within the cycles.

Planning back from your high priority races allows you to work out when you should start to make your training more specific. For those with target races around the northern hemisphere summer things might start to change about now. Look at the demands of your key race or races, what is the distance? What are the conditions of the swim? Is it a hilly or flat bike and run? Start to build your training more towards those specific race demands. A gradual change is best here so as not to put too much strain on your body. No training intensity should ever be neglected completely,maybe think of it more as a sliding scale or changes in the size of pieces of pie. Gradually introducing this race specific training should be done initially with shorter intervals and longer rests. As you get closer to your race, efforts can become longer and closer to race duration with less rest. The gradual change will help your body train, overload to the right amount and then recover. Getting you faster and moving you closer to that PB in your target race.

Although this post has offered some general advice I'll write in the next couple of blogs about building towards short and long course races a little more specifically.

In the meantime, enjoy the sunshine!!
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