2. SWIM FOCUS 3. DOUBLE RUNS 4. ROLLERS
Many professional Canadian triathletes training in Victoria dedicate a month or two to the pool during the winter months. It is a great time to give your legs a break, heal any lingering overuse issues and overhaul your swimming. Since the weather is never a factor and you have plenty of time before the season, you can ramp up your swim mileage well past your sustainable in-season volume and make sizeable gains for the next year. Even if you can’t increase the number of days you are in the pool, you can spend a few minutes in the evening on days you do swim in front of a mirror with some stretch cords, working on your stroke and improving your shoulder strength and mobility. When you’re easing back into training, it’s better to do short, manageable sessions than long elaborate workouts. Short sessions with a focus on good form will allow your ligaments and muscles to readjust to the impact of running and allow you to build your volume safely. After about four weeks of gradual increase, consider adding a short afternoon run of 20 to 30 minutes once or twice a week to a slightly longer morning run. Keeping the second workout very easy will be great for mileage and will offer a training hit from higher frequency running sessions. When I was a pro mountain biker, my day always started with 20 to 30 minutes on rollers. These sessions included a short warm-up, some one-leg drills and a cadence pyramid. I completed these sessions at least five times per week. If I did 30 minutes every time I would get two and a half hours on top of my regular training schedule per week on the bike. Ten hours per month of technical work adds up.
The number of double days we did as cyclists was far fewer than the number of triple workout days I do as a triathlete, so I appreciate that scheduling a technical session in an already busy triathlon schedule is more difficult. However, with compressed cycling training volume due to poor weather, the rollers fit perfectly into a winter training plan.
Another great way to sneak in miles around your training schedule is to spend 20 to 30 minutes on rollers after all of your hard run sessions. If you commit to adding 20 minutes on the rollers after every run this winter you might find you have better bike legs or, at least, you will find riding rollers has improved your pedal stroke.
1 minute easy/6 minutes hard spin/jog
25 squats/25 lunges/25 push ups
1 minute spin/6 minutes hard spin/jog
10 minutes easy