You can do it - Take on Tri-Burgh on Sat 1st June 2013
Join us on facebook or follow us on twitter to keep up to date with training tips. We will have a weekly breakdown of the training plan starting from March 2013 to make sure you get the best from yourself leading up to the race.
Our training programmes are designed for beginners and promises to get you to the starting line in shape to finish comfortably and safely at your own pace. In order to complete a triathlon you need to know how to train efficiently and manage your time effectively. But most importantly it has to be enjoyable along the way.
Before getting started, make sure that you’ve received the OK from your doctor and have some exercise experience. If you have the opportunity, find a friend, mentor, tri club or coach who can do some of your training with you. Having others involved in your training program, as part of your support network is a great way to add fun to the entire triathlon training experience! Finally, make sure that you have a solid base of fitness prior to tackling Tri-Burgh. This means having anywhere from three to six months of steady and consistent training under your belt before beginning this particular program.
What you need to get started :
1. Comfortable Swim Suit and Goggles. All competitors in Tri-Burgh will need a wetsuit on race day
2. Bike of any model that is inspected by your local bike shop for safety.
3. Bike Helmet and comfortable cycling clothing.
4. Running shoes.
5. Heart Rate Monitor
6. There are other items too you’ll need such as sun block and sunglasses or visor.
We recommend that you use a heart rate monitor during much of your bike and run training. The heart rate monitor, which consists of a wristwatch and transmitter that you wear around your chest, functions as your own ‘personal coach’, keeping you within certain training zones and making your training time and efforts more effective.
To keep it simple, you’ll be training in one of these three zones based on your maximum estimated max heart rate (220 – Your Age). Or RPE based effort in the sprint programme.
ZONE ONE = 60-70% of your max heart rate: The ideal zone for recovery workouts, fat burning and endurance building
ZONE TWO = 70-80% of your max heart rate: This zone improves your cardiovascular fitness, muscle strength and endurance
ZONE THREE = >80% of your max heart rate: Higher heart rates for
interval training and maximum speed development
If however, you don’t have a heart rate monitor and can’t get your hands on one you can train using your instincts or body feel.
Zone ONE = Comfortable and controlled training
Zone TWO = Heavy breathing but controlled training
Zone THREE =Max effort with a certain amount of control.
In terms of your fitness level prior to start this program, we recommend that you have the ability to swim at least 400m (16 lengths of a 25m pool) non-stop, bike at least 10 miles non-stop (around 45 minutes) and run at least 2 miles (around 30 minutes) non-stop. This level of fitness insures that you’ll have no problems in terms of progressing safely and effectively towards your goal of finishing Tri-Burgh!
The Tri-Burgh training Programme
The Olympic 12 week program consists of a 6 week build phase whereby we will start building ourselves up for the challenge ahead. Week 7 is the recovery phase. We will be reducing the intensity and allowing our bodies absorb the benefits of our training and reduce the chances of injury. The third stage of the program from week 8 to 11 is the peak phase and we will increase in intensity and frequency helping us into our peak physical condition. The Sprint programme follows a simalar logic albiet less challenging given the overall effort required. In the last week, the taper phase, we’ll gradually decrease our intensity and duration – concluding with the big day ‘TRI-BURGH’.
Time is on your side
Training for your triathlon requires that you have the ability to dedicate eight to ten hours each week to your exercise program. Consistency and making every workout count is very important in order to be fully prepared and ready to go on race day. If you miss workouts just move on to the next day and don’t try to catch up. Enjoy the sessions and you’ll be 100% ready to go on race day!
Nutrition for training
One of the desired benefits of training for Tri Burgh Triathlon is that you’ll probably notice your clothes getting looser and that you’ll drop a size (or two!). Yes, Triathlon training has a wondrous effect on your waistline – but only if you follow a good nutrition program. Athletes eat for enjoyment but also to fuel their training activity. They tend to avoid high fat foods and refined products and focus on whole grains, lean protein sources, fruits and vegetables while eating several smaller meals throughout the day. As a ‘soon to be’ Tri Burgh Triathlete, ask yourself, “How will this meal assist me with my training”, every time you sit down to eat and you’ll see a world of difference in your energy levels when you’re training and when you’re not! A good rule of thumb is to eat carbs a few hours before training and proteins straight after!
Swimming will be the hardest for most people. Pool time is usually limited and sometimes inconvenient and swimming is a sport that many people don’t adopt at an early age. Consider seeking swim stroke advice from someone nearby who is familiar with proper freestyle swim stroke mechanics. While it might be tempting to swim the 1.5K distance using a stroke other than freestyle, it’s highly recommended that you become proficient at the freestyle stroke, as it’s the most effective one to use. In this particular program, both ‘straight swims’ (continuous steady laps) as well as some interval sets (faster laps followed by rest) are prescribed. Please refer to the swim workouts and corresponding KEY to learn the proper jargon. If you don’t understand how it works, please contact someone who does or email
and we’ll be happy to help! Also, if you have access to a local Masters Swim Program, by all means – join it! Masters Swim workouts run by a good coach are motivating, fun and will take your swimming to levels you never before thought possible!
Unlike the swim, in which we focus on distance (metres or kilometres); we’ll focus on time when it comes to bike training. The goal here is to ride about 25 miles comfortably, or for under 2 hours for most people. With the Irish weather always a factor we recommend that you split your bike training up between indoor and outdoor riding. Take group cycling classes at the gym for your indoor training or place your bike on an indoor bike trainer at home. For outdoor rides, find quiet roads with low traffic volumes are nicer and safer. Your cycling technique should include a smooth cadence around 80-90 rpms, measured by a simple cyclometer on a bike in the gym. Set up your bike properly with just a slight bend in your knee when the pedal is at 6 o’clock position and go to your local bike shop for a bike fit session should you have any discomfort when riding. As with your swimming, we’ll be incorporating a few intervals into your bike training at times so be prepared and always be sufficiently warmed up prior to starting an interval set.
Our assumption is that you have the ability to run at least 3 miles at a steady pace (not fast) without having to stop very often. At times, we’ll be incorporating a few intervals into the program; which works to boost your fitness and trains the body to go faster. Always make certain that you are warmed up prior to starting any running sessions.
Other training considerations:
In addition to your sport specific training (Swimming, biking and Running) also consider adding a resistance training component to your exercise routine especially in the build phase of the training program. This can include yoga, Pilates or lightweight training. Performed one or two days each week for 20-30 minutes, resistance training will help you prevent injury while increasing lean tissue and bone density. In this program, ‘RT’ refers to days in which you should do some form of resistance training. Again, try to stay within the timeframes and intensities recommended in the program. If you want to extend your training a bit sometimes, that’s fine – but remember that overdoing it can lead to overtraining and sometimes injury. The cumulative effect of training consistently day after day is the key to a successful program and outcome on race day!
Download Tri-Burgh OYL training programme
Download Tri-Burgh Sprint training programme
Rember train hard and train smart - See you in Louisburgh Fighting Fit June 1st