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Wednesday, June 29, 2011

10 Ways to Enhance Your Sprint Triathlon Training

Official Blog of TrainingPeaks » Blog Archives » 10 Ways to Enhance Your Sprint Triathlon Training

I had to share the article above posted in the Training Peaks blog today. I found it very interesting all the way through, since all I have been doing is training for Sprints and Olympics, and have found that I do many of the things they talk about .... i.e. training for longer races (endurance) when I should be training for speed.

The one disagreement (if you can call it that) my training partner and I have is centered around this fact. I have mentioned before in this blog about how Jenny is "built for long distances" and I am "built for speed". In the short haul I can usually beat her (swim and run, but not bike) but in the end she catches me and passes me because she can go forever. So naturally my preference is to train to my strength. I like fast short swims, usually sets at 400m (1/4 mile), while she prefers long slow swims (1/2 mile to 1 mile). In running I like 1x1 sprints with the run portion sprinting as fast as I can, then a slower walk minute. In the bike we are more compatible, but she can go longer than I can, and usually was much faster as well but I think I have caught up to her in that portion.

This article seems to center on the fact that you train for the race you are competing in, in other words, if it's a sprint then train for speed and not long slow distances.

#4 was especially interesting to me. It reads like this:

Avoid Your Facebook Ironman Friends. If you just got back from an explosive 2 mile run, then log-in to your social network to find that your friend just slogged out 12 miles, you may be discouraged. It is very important, however, for you to realize that the individual who is training for Ironman is actually making themselves slower when it comes to sprint triathlon training. So don’t be discouraged that you’re not “fit enough”. For sprint triathlon training, you should pursue speed, and not slow endurance.

I have found myself doing this when reading KC's workouts, and Jen B's. I read them and think "Man I am doing nowhere NEAR what they do". I get excited over breaking 12:00 pace in a 2 mile run, then read (or in the case of Saturday, SEE) about KC running 8 miles at 8:00. Cripes. But even she has pointed out that I cannot compare myself to her (or to anyone else) for many different reasons. One, that she has been doing this a long time and I have been doing it for 6 months, and Two, that she is training for Ironman and I am competing in Sprints. KC, jen B, and all the others (too many to name) on the Daily Mile site have been an inspiration, and goves me something to strive for. I am glad that I connected with all of them.

So I have to remind myself of a few things:

1. In May of 2010 I weighed a very soft 302 pounds.
2. In August when I started cycling with Jenny and Pam I couldn't go 2 miles without stopping (every station at Flatwoods) and barely maintained 12 mph.
3. In November 2010 I participated in Cure on Wheels 25 mile bike ride and only made it 15 (barely) and finished LAST.
4. In January of this year I started swimming, barged the whole way, and could only make it one length of the pool at a time.

Since then ....

1. I now weigh 240 and only little parts are still soft. :)
2. I go 18 miles without breaks and can maintain 17-20 mph (no headwind)
3. 25 miles is a walk in the park and I cannot wait for this years ride to prove it.
4. I go 2500m in the pool, and have completed three tri's with ocean swims, improving each time.

So there has been improvement, and I have to tell myself that all the time.