Triathlon Magazine Canada - - FEATURES - BY LUCY SMITH

WOULDN’T IT BE great if we could train with our own per­son­al­ized crys­tal ball that al­lowed us to push the en­ve­lope by in­creas­ing our mileage and our in­ten­sity in pur­suit of a fast triathlon, or back off and take some rest to avoid in­jury? While crys­tal balls are the stuff of fan­tasy, ex­pe­ri­ence and train­ing “smarts” can help make triathlon train­ing a smoother process where you rec­og­nize in­jury pre­dic­tors and avoid mis­takes.

In­jury-free train­ing is a com­bi­na­tion of hav­ing a well thought out plan and learn­ing to train with in­tu­ition: in­creas­ing your aware­ness for how your body is do­ing. While a pro­gres­sive train­ing sched­ule along with a GPS watch, power meter and heart rate mon­i­tor will help you get faster, re­cov­ery is im­por­tant emo­tion­ally: all ath­letes need down­time from the pur­suit of goals and be­ing psy­cho­log­i­cally en­gaged. Don’t wait un­til you are ex­hausted, sore or in­jured to take a rest. Plan­ning re­cov­ery is as im­por­tant as plan­ning your pace, power and en­durance pro­gres­sions. With­out re­cov­ery the body can­not ab­sorb the train­ing load or adapt to get­ting stronger. Train­ing with­out re­cov­ery ul­ti­mately leads to di­min­ish­ing re­turns: the ses­sions get pro­gres­sively slower and slower as you tire over time, your form breaks down as you com­pen­sate for tired mus­cles, the runs get slower as you run less ef­fi­ciently and on and on.

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