Saturday, April 6, 2013

A Beginner's Guide To Triathlon Training

My editor put up the first two pieces from a series of articles I wrote last month that I collectively called "A Beginner's Guide to Triathlon Training."  I mention that only because Chris, my editor, decided not to use that title.  But I liked it, so there you go.

Anyway, the articles that went up were:

As you can probably imagine, that first piece is about base training and the importance of going long.  There's a bit in there about pacing and heart rates and that kind of thing, and an acknowledgement that doing too much, too soon will get you hurt.  It's really, really basic stuff, but you know, when you set out to talk about this stuff, you have to start somewhere.  So I always try to start with the fundamentals and build up to more complicated principles over the course of an article set.

The second piece is about balancing the training of the three disciplines, and again, I'd say it's targeted solidly at folks who're trying to figure out how to train for their first triathlon.  I also laid out a typical training week, though I think Chris added something in there because there's a little discussion of interval training that I wasn't planning to get into until later in the series.

Anyway, if you've been wanting to try a triathlon but don't know how to approach the sport, this series is not a bad place to begin.  That said, if you read this stuff and have questions, let me know, and I'll try to answer them.



  1. For the average triathlon athlete you never are going to go very fast in any of the three sports. When you conduct your workouts at anaerobic heart rates they provide minimal benefits in exchange for the large amount of effort and energy that you have to expend. This can cause overtraining and burnout, quite possibly injury.

    triathlon training for beginners

    1. I definitely do not agree that there is NO place for speed work in a triathlete's training plan--even for an average beginner. Yes, most of your work should be long(ish), slow(ish) work, but working hard can be appropriate as part of a larger plan.

      Besides which, what's "average"? At least in America, I think there are relatively few folks who take up triathlon as a first sport. It's therefore much more likely that your "average" triathlete already has some athletic background and will want more challenge than a lifetime of long, slow distance work.