T Nation

Training for Something a Little Different

I bought a road bike about three weeks ago and haven’t gone more then a day without riding it. While I was at the bike shop getting a few little things, there was a flier for a triathlon that got me thinking “I wonder if I could do that?” Unfortunately I can’t do that one because it’s in a few days. I did, however, find a little one that I’m going to do, mostly for fun but also to see what it’s like.

It’s not a “real” triathlon in that it’s a 1.2 mile kayak row, a 16 mile bike ride, and a 3.1 mile run. It takes place August 6th (7 weeks).

I did some poking around and found a weekly training split that I like and just had a few questions about it.

The Split:

Monday: lift upper body, cycle (easy hour)
Tuesday: lift lower body, run (sprints or intervals, total 2-3 miles)
Wednesday: swim
Thursday: Lift upper body, cycle (easy hour)
Friday: lift lower body, run (sprints or intervals, total 2-3 miles)
Saturday: Off
Sunday: combined cycle/run (this is the day that will kill your muscle mass…1-2 hours total time)

(just for reference, the forum I found it in:

I’m not to worried about the 16 mile ride. The 3.1 mile run on the other hand I know is going to be a test of sheer will power. I’m not a runner right now. I used to run a few miles here and there but I don’t think I’ve ever gone over 2.

The best idea, that I’ve come up with, would be to start with about 1:15 biking and 45min run. Each Sunday, add more running and less biking depending on how well it goes.

Any better ideas??

If it were me and I were serious, I would back off on the lifting (2x/wk?) and do more running (4+x/wk), since you say that’s a weaker area for you. However, you said that you like this split and I get the impression this is more of a “just for the hell” of it type of thing, so have at it and see what happens.

That said rowing (paddling?) is conspicuously absent from your plan. Not sure if you already have a background in this sport, but some rudimentary technical/conditioning training may be worthwhile. If your nutrition is solid and you are recovering well, you really shouldn’t lose an alarming amount of muscle mass in 7 weeks. All the best and have fun.

Hi kiddo.
Welcome to road biking. Its fun isnt it. Theres nothing like a one on one duel
up a mointain in a race.
Anway, if I was you, I would cut lifting down to 2 or 3 times a week. For example
2 upper body days and 1 lower body day. All of that cycling and running is going to
be taxing on the legs.

tweet tweet

Thanks Batman. The rowing I was actually going to do on Wednesday instead of swimming. I’ve been around the lake my whole life so, while it’s nothing new, I do want to give it a little bit of practice and I think that once a week will be perfect for it.

This did start out as a “for the hell of it” thing but I would like to be serious about the training for it. My second goal for this, next to finishing in the top half of the field, is to find out what it’s really like to train like an endurance athlete. It’s something new so I thought I would just go gung-ho and see what happens. Maybe I can surprise myself and everyone else and come in somewhere towards the top.

I tweeked the split just a little and added a short run to Monday which will give me 4 days running. I also removed the workout on Friday and made it just a run day. I figure that will give my legs a day off Wednesday, the biking on Thursday shouldn’t beat my legs up to bad, and then I can have a good, run-focused day on Friday.

Monday: lift upper body, cycle (easy hour) run (easy run ~30min)
Tuesday: lift lower body, run (sprints or intervals, total 2-3 miles)
Wednesday: rowing
Thursday: Lift upper body, cycle (easy hour)
Friday: run (sprints or intervals, total 2-3 miles)
Saturday: Off
Sunday: combined cycle/run (this is the day that will kill your muscle mass…1-2 hours total time)

Also, now that I’m looking at it, is the extra run on Monday a good spot? Because Sunday is a cycle/run day and is followed by a run/cycle/lift day. I’ll have to try it and see how it feels. Might be good practice in backing off a little on my biking. I have a tenancy to be a bit aggressive with my biking.

Samson - Looking better IMO. Just FTR I am by no means an expert or coach in this type of training. That said, here are a few thoughts: If you’re concerned about sandwiching your extra Mon. run between those other 2 days (I assume Sun. is 1-1.5 x race distance @ near goal pace?), maybe swap Wed.'s row with Tue.'s Run/Lift? Google Fartlek training and consider it for your running intervals.

Also perhaps incorporating, perhaps a little later, 1 speed interval/lactate threshold workout (3 x 15 min intervals just below threshold with 7 min recovery at easy pace finish w/ 6 x 10-20 sec max effort sprints with 5 min recovery at easy pace between) into your cycling, if recovery allows. If it comes down to letting the running or the cycling slide, however, keep the running up.

Also, running is a skill. Look into “Chi Running” or “Pose Running” and work on your form. It’s so very worth it to do so. Finally I would urge you to include foam-roller/LAX ball self massage and mobility work into your daily routine.

I don’t know if any of this helps. Of course, as you know, it comes down to how you feel so do what works for you. Again, Have at it and have fun!

I’m doing pretty good so far. I did get a little spooked on my first day lifting. I started to do my planned upperbody workout and realized that I had to make some adjustments. I was still in heavy, low-rep mode and had to make a conscious effort to go a little lighter and keep my sets up around 6-8. What’s funny is that I can’t really remember the last time I went above 5 reps. I’m enjoying it so far. Feels good in a different kind of way.

One thing I did change just for this week was the time periods. I dropped my lifting from ~1hr to about 40min. One of patterns in my training are I try to go all out right off the line and I usually beat myself into submission within 2 weeks. I’m gonna add in more after this week depending on how I feel.

I’m trying to stretch at least once a day and I think I’m gonna go find a some PVC pipe so that I can do some rolling at home. Also getting my hands on the kayak either tomorrow or the next day so I can actually do that instead of just the rowing machine.

Hey brother, from someone who had done three off the couch olympic distance tri’s and trained for a marathon while still lifting hard here is my take for what it is worth. Since you have limited time stay consistent and GO HARD (greater than 85% heart rate for your cardio). Hard cycling intervals of 3-5 minutes with 2-3 minute rests will do ALOT. As will doing 400meter to 1 kilometer all out running intervals with 1:30-2:30 rests between.

Good luck and keep us in your training loop and tag us with your final results…be Strong(er).

I?ve done 2 oly distance tri?s and a ½ marathon. Did them all for fun so I?m really no expert but I think you may want to cut lifting down to 2x a week. I know it?s not ideal to maintain muscle mass but hey it?s only for a few weeks. Stick to 3 big lifts for around 3-4 sets of 8-10 reps. I would squat, bench and do pull-ups one day and then deadlift, clean&press and row the other.

I have to second what killerDIRK said about hard cycling intervals. I also did a lot of 800meter all out runs.

Make sure at least 2x a week you get a run in after the bike, even if it is only a real slow mile. The hardest part of a tri (for me and most people I talk to) is the transition from bike to run. The first mile will not be fun so get your body used to it.

Good luck!

having done a triathlon last year i can advise you to train the switch from bike to run coz your legs will be jelly :D. i saw it is kayaking but if u want to compete in a triathlon including swimming go to a local swimming club and learn proper form, and dont worry, its not as hard as it seems :smiley:

you dont need to carb up for the short distance (just drink some water or carb solution during the race) and get some protein/fast carbs for afterwards so you arent sore or kinda hangover, good luck :wink:

DB297 has a GREAT point that I did seem to overlook. It is VERY imperetive to do bike to run intervals. I would assume (ass of u and me) you have a normal road bike and not a TT/tri bike it will be even harder on you than it is upon myself having my own TT bike…here is why.

A normal road bike has a seat tube angle of 73* while a TT/tri bike has an angle of 78* which places ones body more directly over the pedals and allows the legs to “hang” more perpendicularly to the road, where as a road bike one sits further back for more all day comfort. Yet when one transitions from bike to run this 73* SEAT ANGLE on the road bike makes it harder to initially engage your muscles for running.

MY suggestion would be to do 2-3 mile all out cycling efforts into 800-1200meter runs. 3-5 reps will blow oneself up. Also this gives you a great way to practice moving through the transition zone as the CLOCK keeps running…

keep up the good work and keep us in the fold…live Strong(er)

[quote]killerDIRK wrote:
It is VERY imperetive to do bike to run intervals. [/quote]

good god yes. i did not do these before my first tri and i about fell trying to run off of the bike and took nearly 2 miles to find my groove. it was a hard lesson to learn.

Hey Samson, How the hell ya DOING, we are wondering if you are still in training or have drowned, LOL : )
Get back and keep this thread going…

Now all of my planned adventures are done with, I thought I would revisit my questions to see what I had learned. After the last post I made, I stopped looking for training advise almost completely on-line. I’m the poster boy of ?paralysis by analysis.? It was a good idea too. I stopped reading and just did it. Things were tweaked but only when they needed to be.

In the past two months, not only did I finish the triathlon (placed 7th out of 18), three weeks after that, I also rode my bike in the AIDS Ride for Life which is a 100-mile bike ride around Cayuga Lake.

Honestly, I learned more about motivation and what consistency can do for you then anything else in the past 2 months. The tri was was the first thing I ever really committed myself to doing and actually finished. I’ve layed out goals before and always veered off track for one excuse or another so this was a huge accomplishment.

The 100 mile ride was definitely the most hardcore thing I’ve ever done. Even though I knew I was going slow at some points, I only got off my bike and walked it once, for about 20 feet. And I don’t really even worry about that because that was before I learned about how important food is halfway through. I could feel the difference between stops when I did eat enough, and when I just grabbed a bite and went off. If you ever need to drill a concept into your head, make it the only thing you think of. Because after, 8hr 45min on my bike, I actually understand things now instead of just knowing them.

Hey Samson, glad to hear that you succeeded in your goals and congrats on the Century. The Big 100 is a goal of many ! Do you have any future Tri/Cycling adventures to keep you motivated or was that it ??? Continued success on those things you put your mind to…killerDIRK ; )