• Making your training happen!

    rich jones and mike redshaw thetrilife squareMaking your plan work for you

    It is easy to be given a training plan and then quickly lose interest when you aren’t able to complete all the sessions or tasks.  But there are ways to make your plan work for you so that you can stay motivated.

    Plan, plan, plan 

    So, you have received your next weeks of  triathlon training and you know exactly what you need to do.  Next step is planning to make it happen.  A Sunday evening is a good time to look at your plan – look at your week and work out exactly when you are going to do each session.  Think about when in the day are you going to do a particular session and is there anything you need to do before hand to make this happen?  If you don’t plan it – it won’t happen.

    Moving sessions around

    Most times it is absolutely fine to move sessions around.   Certainly at the start of a triathlon training plan, all of the sessions will be aerobic and low intensity and many of the sessions will be developing new skills.    It is a good idea to have a day of swimming between run sessions or bike sessions, rather than run sessions on consecutive days but that aside move your sessions to suit your other weekly commitments.

    Doing spin classes

    Group sessions can be great for motivation and in particular if you are new to cycle training, spin classes can be an effective way of getting a midweek bike session done.  A spin session for example could replace your skills based mid week stationary bike session.  Need to bear in mind a) some spin classes are tougher than perhaps your training requires depending on where you are with your training (the initial stages of triathlon training will include skill development over strength development for example) b) it is likely that you need to practice your bike handling skills too and you won’t get these being on a spin bike.

    Habits are the key

    Having your training become a habit is the key to success.  The more we do the same thing at the same time with the same people the less “resistance” we have to do the activity.   Your brain will be ready to go for the lunchtime run with a colleague every Tuesday.  Seek out habit forming opportunities.

    Train early

    This is probably the best piece of advice a coach can give anyone.  You are a busy person – your family or work often have to take priority over your training.  But this is less likely to happen if your plan your training first thing in the morning, either before you go to work or maybe as soon as you get back from the school run.  Anything planned to happen after lunchtime has a high chance of being derailed.

    If you miss a session …

    … you let the missed session go.  Don’t try to make up missed sessions just focus on planning how to make the next session happen.