How to plan your triathlon season?

As our collaborator is usual Ricard Perez we are offering different tips to improve our fitness, improve our technique or practice alternatives to improve our performance in triathlon. This time he tells us how to plan our triathlon season.

 

If you want to play sports coherent way, you can not go to jump in the bush and doing the first thing that comes to mind every day.

 

Why do you have to plan your season?

If you want to play sports in a way coherent, you can not go to jump in the bush and doing the first thing that comes to mind every day.

 

For this reason it is important to have a Roadmap, of some element that gives you instructions on where you are going and what are the steps by which you will go forward.

 

If you have to take a long trip by car, I imagine that the first thing you think is what your destination will be and also which are the different roads that allow you to drive there.

 

Well, a sporting plan has the same purpose: you must identify which are your objectives of the season and what path will you take to reach them?

What are the most important elements of the season?

 

There are many people who do sports to be fit, to be active, to move forward little by little and "... I'll think what races I do throughout the season ..."

 

This is a very valid option, but anyway you have to think about whether you will do races all year round, or only in summer, or if you are interested in racing during a month yes and a month no.

 

The planning that I have prepared for this project is based on the election of 1 main objective, the one that you consider most important and that I have tried to find towards the end of the 9 months of the project.

 

What is the point of planning a season of 9 months if after 2 months you have already achieved your maximum objective?

triathlon season

 

How to have a goal to 9 months view remains and motivation day by day (the famous phrase "... I still have time to train, there's still a lot left for the race ...") the ideal is to have a couple of secondary objectives. Some competitions that although they are not the main objective, yes that are important.

 

You can not think that every weekend that competition is a goal, because in that case you're charging with a lot of pressure. I know there are people who say "... I do competitions every weekend, and I take them as a quality training ...".

 

I do not like this system, in the same way that I do not like to take the car to go from Barcelona to Vigo and stop in all the towns I'm going through. Yes, I will make stops every so often to rest, eat something and fill the deposit. But what I would never do is stop each 30 kms to visit a town, if what I want to do is get to Vigo.

How do you divide a season?

 

The first thing you have to think about is that these 9-10-11 months are your season, so you have to divide it into smaller parts to focus on some more specific objective.

 

In this case what we will do is divide the season into blocks (call him macrocycles).

 

So you already know that you will have different blocks, or moments, or periodsthe macrocycles in this season. Also, as your day to day will not be the same (the first month of training is not the same as the last month of the season), each of the macrocycles will focus on some element.

 

You will start doing the pre-seasonwhere will you have a very general work and relatively soft.

 

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sleeping runner

 

Next comes the base period, which usually lasts 2 or 3 months. During the base period, some moderate intensities with the aim of working your aerobic condition.

 

Some people also call this period, period of foundations, and this name is even more graphic. The base period (or basics) serves to create a sports base, foundations on which your athlete will be built later. That is to say, that all the base you get during these 2 or 3 early months of the season will serve you to later be able to work better the speed, the resistance, the rhythm of competition etc.

In the same way that a house can not be sustained without a good foundation, an athlete can not evolve without a good foundation.

 

sports foundation

 

So Do not hurry If you do not have a good aerobic base, maybe you can do extreme training in December, but I assure you that in May, June you will begin to waver (since the foundations are not solid) .

 

After the base period, you will find that your body may be a little asleep. Since you have 2 or 3 months working at (relatively) smooth rhythms, you have the feeling that you are slow, that you have no spark.

 

Well precisely this is what has to happen, because this is where during 1 month you will work the speed and also to awakening to your body

 

Now that you have made a period of adaptation to the sport (pre-season), that you have created a good foundation (base) and that you have made sure to awaken your body (speed), what remains is to put the icing on it and let it know that the good will come.

 

How do you want to do competitions (so far you've only done a few valuation tests, and in case you have done some competition, you have been aware that it was too early to be competitive) you have to tell your body what pace you will have to get used to.

 

This period is the Maximum VO2 period, Also called anaerobic threshold (we will come another day to this concept) or also called competition rhythm.

 

So during 1 month, you're looking for that rhythm that allows you To be competitive.

 

The moment you find yourself half of the season, touch specialize, that is, work those characteristic elements of the competitions you will do.

concentration

 

If you want to do short distance, you will have to work very well transitions, not to lose time in the pits, be prepared for changes of rhythm on the bike (and not stay hung), has to run intensely a short distance and drink liquid during the race.

 

If you want to do middle distance, you will have to work well concentration, because although the distance is a bit long, you must maintain a certain intensity and not relax, accustom your body to feed on the bike, to run with a bit of muscle fatigue.

 

If you want to do long distance, you will have to work very well with food, since everything depends on how you feed during the race, knowing how to know your body to identify the moments when you have to regulate the intensity.

 

Finally, after specializing in your modality, it is time to collect the fruits of your work, the competition period.

 

During the Specialization period You've done a couple of competitions that were your secondary objectives, since in this way, the 2 or 3 or 4 months of specialization have been more bearable and you have not been obsessed in playing everything to a letter at the end of the season.

 

As you see, it is very important to plan a season and know where you're going, because if not the whole process is very monotonous.

 

tunel

How do you divide a month?

Now that you are clear that not the whole season is the same, and that depending on the month you will be pursuing one or the other purpose, it is time to be more specific.

 

Be clear that you can not always be full, that you can not do all the training as if it were the final of the world championship.

 

It's true that you do not start a butt workout from the minute zero, if not that you do something called heating? Well within a month (mesociclo) there is one thing that you already know that they are called weeks (microcycles).

 

So the easiest thing is to divide a month (mesocycle) in 4 weeks (microcycles) and each of these weeks will have a purpose.

 

You'll start with 1 warm-up week, or soft week, or week of recovery from the previous cycle.

 

After this gentle week, you will have 2 weeks of accumulation. Weeks in which progressively increasing intensity and volume. That is to say, since you have heated up a week, you can start squeezing for a couple of weeks.

 

And to finish the process, comes the "momentum", the rush, the week of maximum load. After 3 weeks increasing the volume and intensity you can tighten your body to maximum during 1 week.

 

 

training session

It's like an individual training session: you can not go all the way in a workout until your body is ready.

 

After the week of maximum load (in which you have finished the mesociclo of 4 microcycles) it is time to rest a little, for this reason there is a mild week at the beginning of the month, because you come to finish a month of 4 weeks and now it's time to face another month of 4 weeks.

 

How do you manage to work all the disciplines?

In the same way that it is clear that in a workout you do not swim, bike and race at the same time (except in cases of transitions or simulation, but this is not done every day of training), because you will do the same for months.

 

Yes, during a month you will train all the disciplines, but you must set a goal of 1 month = improvement of 1 discipline. Do not want to improve in all aspects every day (or every month), so it is best to consider that for a month you will improve your level of a disciplineyou will maintain the level of the other two.

 

The most important thing: you have your planning that will be your roadmap of the season, so enjoy the day to day, that the long-term vision has already defined.

 

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