Couch to Sprint Distance Training Plan Made Easy w/ Coaching Videos


Wendy Mader

All plans by this Coach


16 Weeks

Typical Week

2 Day Off, 2 Swim, 1 Strength, 2 Run, 2 Bike

Longest Workout

1:20 hrs

Plan Specs

beginner hr based pace based

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You're going to love this 16-week Couch to Sprint distance training plan from Ironman Certified Coach and 9x Kona finisher, Wendy Mader! In addition to 16 week's worth of swimming, biking, running and strength training workouts, we also included 3 INSTRUCTIONAL VIDEOS, one before each phase of training. That's right! You'll be able to see and hear coach Wendy explaining how each training block is organized and structured. This Sprint Distance Program goes beyond numbers on a spreadsheet. It's a multimedia approach along with PDF resources explaining workout terminology, for the swim, bike, run, plus nutrition, recovery, strength, and intensity recourse guides to reference throughout the program

This 16-week plan starts with 2 days in the pool, 2 days on the bike, 2 days running and 2 days of strength with 2 days off.

Monday is the scheduled rest day and the longer workouts are on the weekend. Duration ranges from 2-6 hours per week Intensity is set to rate of perceived effort, RPE, heart rate, power or pace. Generally most beginners best train with RPE.

I used the concept of periodization. Each month, you will progressively build duration and intensity over 3 weeks followed by a lower volume, recovery week.

This is a time-based program.

At the end of 8 weeks, you should be comfortable running at 5k event
At the end of 12 weeks, you should be comfortable completing a "mini" indoor triathlon
At the end of 16 weeks, you should be comfortable finishing an Sprint Distance Triathlon.

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Training Load By Week
Average Weekly Breakdown
Average Weekly Training Hours: 03:49
Training Load By Week
Average Weekly Training Hours: 03:49
Average Weekly Breakdown

wendy mader

Ironman Certified Coach (9x Kona Finisher): Swimming, biking, running coaching plans for beginners and advanced athletes. One on One coaching available at

Back to Plan Details

Sample Day 1


Goal today is to get in the pool as assess your swimming fitness. Breathing, body balance, rotation plus the 3 main phases of the stroke.

If you are new to swimming and need more guidance check out our how to swim faster in 30 day program with 42 instructional videos. Email to receive 25% off.

If you are an experience or advanced swimmer, swim more if you like

Sample Day 1

Strength Mobilty and Stability

Refer to PDF in week 2 for movements

Sample Day 2


Run 20 minutes RPE 1-4,

During your run focus on cadence, 85-90 one foot strikes a minutes. OK to incorporate a run walk method. Log what you do and record RPE, See intensity recourses in week 2.

Sample Day 3

Cadence Drills

Skills and drills are best done indoors

WU: 5 minutes RPE 1-3,
2x 30 sec spin ups (easy gear, high cadence) with 30 sec easy between sets
5 min spin 80-90 rpms, RPE 4-5,
5 x 30 sec spin ups (easy gear, high cadence) with 30 sec easy between sets

CD: 5 minutes 80-90 rpms RPE 1-3

Sample Day 3


Sample Day 4

Swim Golf

Experienced athletes can swim more, inexperienced athletes can swim less.

View swim resourses in week 2 to learn more about golf
View more: information

WU: 100 loosen up
MS: wear a pull buoy.
1. Swim 50 count strokes and add to your time, that is your golf score. Example, 50 strokes in 50 seconds = 100.
2. Then swim 50 with as many strokes as your can, add to your time. Try to add at least 10 strokes per length.
3. Then swim 50 with the least amount of strokes focusing on pulling from behind, past your hip, and add to your time.
Record your normal stroke count, FASTest stroke count, and stroke count when you are trying to take less strokes
10X50s best average stroke count and pace, with the goal of extending your stroke from behind, not out in front.

Sample Day 5


Ride 20-30 minutes minutes focus on cadence and pedal stroke zone 1-2, RPE 2-4

Refer to cycling resources in week 2 to learn more about cycling technique

Couch to Sprint Distance Training Plan Made Easy w/ Coaching Videos

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