Thursday, May 13, 2010

The Forgotten Sport of Triathlon Training

I am OBSESSED with plans - nutrition plans, triathlon plans, etc. I love lists. So I was having a really hard time not seeing any strength training plans incorporated into these tri plans. Well, at least nothing noteworthy.

I notice as I read all these triathlon blogs that very few write on their strength training. I also know that this is a frequently visited topic among my friends that participate in triathlons.

"Should I do 1, 2 or 3 days a week?"
"How should I train with weights?"
"Where can I fit it in among the swimming, running and biking and having a life?"
"Aren't I developing the muscles when I do my harder speed training or paddle workout with swimming?"
"How important is it?"
"The only day I can fit it in, is a day I have my toughest workout?"

We all know it is important but it boils down to two challenges:
1. Time management
2. Fatigued body

What is the solution? I am not sure, I wish I was well-versed in this subject more, just an avid reader of Muscle and Fitness since 1995, participant in endurance activities and involved in sports teams of field hockey, cheerleading and track (yes cheerleading is a sport...). Through all of that, I notice that my body has changed since I packed up my Muscle and Fitness mags and changed over to Triathlete mags. Could be because of my eating habits, gravity taking effect after 30, etc, etc? I started going to a nutritionist which has helped shed some body fat. But, it really comes down to muscle tone and definition, but more importantly, the loss of strength due to high amounts of aerobic activity.

So, all the triathlon books I have pored through says - yes, 2 days a week for a while and then you stop as you get closer to racing...I think conditioning workouts are so important. In fact another blogger Tawnee has some great insight into this. I think she is writing an article in Triathlete mag.

However, I downloaded a few favorites here and below for those - non-tri girls that want a new weight workout plan, I scanned the pics of the latest Muscle and Fitness Hers mag with the 8 week plan which I think is great after I read through.

Workout #1
I have a great workout from Muscle & Fitness hers published on Mar/Apr 2008. It was a workout developed by an IFBB fitness pro Amy Villa-Nelson. I am going to start incorporating this once a week. Should take about 35-45 minutes.

Workout #2 - I decided to go with a total body workout for the second workout of the week since I know it will be difficult to fit in during work, life, training, nutrition, etc...

Squats 3 sets of 12 or Clean and Press 3 sets of 12
Lunges 3 sets of 12
Leg Extension 3 sets of 12
Deadlift 3 sets of 12 or Leg Curls 3 sets of 12

Overhead Shoulder Press 3 sets of 12
Reverse Flys 2 sets of 12 (great for swimming)

Lat Pull down 3 sets of 12 or One Arm Row 3 sets of 12
Push-ups 3 sets of 15 (one-legged)
Incline Chest Press 3 sets of 12

Bicep Curls 3 sets of 12 or 2 sets of 21s (7 all the way down and 1/2 way up, 7 1/2 way up and all the way up and 7 full bicep curls) - My FAVORITE**
Triceps - Lying Tricep Extension or Dips use a second bench to prop your feet up for advanced (maybe even adding a 5 lb weight on your body??) 3 sets of 15

Hanging leg Raise - 3 sets to failure
Exercise ball roll - use the exercise ball to prop up feet, balance in a plank position and curl lower body in as a curl - 3 sets of 15
Decline Bench medicine ball side crunch 3 sets of 15
Hip Thrust 3 sets of 15

And NOW for all you "non-Triathletes" and looking for a great summer weight plan...

Happy Weight Training!!!
PS - I will be trying out some P90X soon...

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