MUST TRI HARDER

GB’s Olympic cham­pion Alis­tair Brown­lee shares the tips that helped him mas­ter all three dis­ci­plines

Men's Fitness - - Contents -

All there is to know about triathlon

Triathlon suc­cess is in our na­tional make-up: in the 26 years since the In­ter­na­tional Triathlon Union formed, a Great Bri­tish ath­lete has been crowned men’s world cham­pion ten times. Triathlons are also the new gold stan­dard of car­dio­vas­cu­lar fit­ness and willpower – an op­por­tu­nity to test your swim­ming, cy­cling and run­ning cre­den­tials in race con­di­tions across man­age­able dis­tances ( the Olympic event fea­tures a 1.5km swim, 40km bike and 10km run). Here, reign­ing Olympic, Euro­pean and Com­mon­wealth cham­pion and two-time ITU world champ Alis­tair Brown­lee out­lines what you need to know to com­pete.

1. GO WITH YOUR FLOW

‘Es­tab­lish an ef­fi­cient swim­ming race pace in train­ing so you know how hard you can push for a sprint fin­ish. I es­ti­mate mine at 70 sec­onds per 100m. I use this drill to test it: swim 200m at a pace ten sec­onds slower, then an­other 200m 20 sec­onds slower, then 100m at race pace, mak­ing a note of how out of breath I am. I want to feel like I could hold that pace in­def­i­nitely.’

2. DON’T DITCH THE WEIGHTS

‘Most of my train­ing is out­doors, but I do use the gym to strengthen my core, lower back and calves. The aim is func­tional strength and in­jury pre­ven­tion. I have prob­lems with my an­kles, so weighted step-ups and calf raises help pro­tect and strengthen them.’

3. BLAZE A TRAIL

‘I mainly run off-road on soft ground to save my joints. Get used to tran­si­tion­ing from the bike to the run by do­ing back-to-back bike and run ses­sions.’ Do at least one each week in the four weeks be­fore a race.

4. OVER­COME YOUR ANX­I­ETY

‘The swim puts a lot of peo­ple off so break it down into smaller chunks in your train­ing. Find a tri club with a lake and spend time there wear­ing your wet­suit – you’ll feel a lot more buoy­ant than just in your swim suit.’

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