BUILD RACE STRENGTH IN 8 WEEKS

8-WEEK PLAN

220 Triathlon Magazine - - Contents - COACH DERMOTT HAYES S

It’s sim­ple re­ally – add strength train­ing to your ses­sions to get faster! Here’s the plan that will keep you race strong in 2018

As triathletes, we’re con­cerned with num­bers, watts, speed and mak­ing sure that we spend as much time as pos­si­ble on swim, bike and run. Which is fair enough, but there’s one fi­nal el­e­ment to a triath­lete’s train­ing that will pro­duce greater re­sults and longevity in the sport, and that’s strength train­ing.

Spend­ing time build­ing greater strength is so of­ten over­looked in the pur­suit of speed. But in this eight-week plan we’re go­ing to help you achieve a more rounded ap­proach to strength train­ing, by in­clud­ing tra­di­tional gym- or home-based ex­er­cises along­side spe­cific swim, bike and run strength ses­sions. There’s al­ways time in the year to build mus­cle, but spring is per­fect as it’s be­fore most triathletes start hit­ting peak dis­tance or in­ten­sity.

The plan is based around an Olympic-dis­tance triathlon, so you can mod­ify the du­ra­tion or dis­tance of ses­sions to be more in­di­vid­ual, in par­tic­u­lar the longer week­end ses­sions. The suc­cess of the plan will be boosted if you have run­ning and cy­cling routes around you that of­fer a va­ri­ety of hills – some long, some short, some steep and oth­ers that have a grad­ual in­cline. It’s im­por­tant to make these hills part of longer ses­sions and learn to love them!

The shorter mid­week ses­sions in the plan in­clude very def­i­nite fo­cus on build­ing power through ei­ther swim­ming with pad­dles, us­ing an in­door bike to climb with struc­ture or run­ning on a tread­mill and hit­ting the in­clines. An area of par­tic­u­lar fo­cus is ‘overgear­ing’ on hills, which means rid­ing in a gear that’s one or two more than you’d usu­ally choose to of­fer greater re­sis­tance.

The strength ex­er­cises sep­a­rate into swim, bike and run and can be done at ei­ther home or in the gym. They’re split into four groups, which can be found on­line at 220tri.com. The rou­tines should take no more than 20-25mins and they change ev­ery two weeks to of­fer va­ri­ety and pro­gres­sion. All of the ex­er­cises are straight­for­ward, but, as with any strength train­ing plan, you should seek ad­vice on form and tech­nique to avoid in­jury. At the end of these eight weeks you’ll be more pow­er­ful and more re­silient to in­jury, which both cre­ate more speed. It’s time to get strong!

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