Triathlon: 12 Week Beginner/Intermediate Foundation


Mark Saroni

All plans by this Coach


12 Weeks

Typical Week

2 Swim, 2 Strength, 3 Run, 2 Other, 2 Bike

Longest Workout

0:50 hrs swim
2:30 hrs bike
1:10 hrs run

Plan Specs

triathlon half ironman beginner intermediate multi day power based hr based pace based tss based strength base period

This plan is protected by our Refund Policy and may, with the author's approval, be exchanged for a plan of equal value from the same author.

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Includes Structured Workouts

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Learn More about Structured Workouts.

This training plan is great for novice to intermediate triathletes who want to build a solid base of strength and fitness during the offseason OR before purchasing a race specific training plan. The athlete should be able to handle 5-8 hours of training per week and plan to complete a half distance or full distance long course triathlon this coming season.

Keep fitness at a reasonable level (keep it from dropping more than 20-50% of peak fitness (CTL)) while preparing your body to handle the training loads of the base phase.

With this plan, athletes will maintain their aerobic fitness and lay the foundation for a successful season through consistent training in all three disciplines of swim, bike, and run that is heavily supported by skill work, mobility exercises, strength training, and force generation.

Included with the purchase of this plan is email access to a Paragon Training coach for plan-specific questions. If you have a question about a training zone, term definition, or whether to switch a session within a week, you can email a coach and we will respond to you within 48 hours.

4-6 weeks preparatory with primary workout Intensity Factor (IF) not to exceed 0.60-0.72 IF (nothing above low aerobic), building intensity a bit each week. If choosing to get coach support with your plan, we will advise when it appears you are ready to move from the preparatory phase based on how the first four weeks of training went for you.
You will be advised to either continue the remaining 2 weeks of the prep phase as prescribed, or slightly increase volume/intensity.
6-8 weeks with goal to increase CTL by 2-3 per week building into base phase. Primary workout Intensity Factor will be in the range of 0.65 - 0.80 IF (low up to moderate intensity).

Willing to shift primary focus from SBR activities to supporting activities of mobility, strength, skills, and force.
STRENGTH: Access to gym or equipment as described in the strength, stretching, and stability workouts.
Generally, this includes free weights, strength bands, foam rollers.
SWIM: Familiarity with the RPE (rating of perceived exertion) scale to track swim intensity. Swim equipment
as described in embedded drills and videos.
REQUIRED: Power meter;
OPTIONAL: pace & heart rate tracking, GPS device
REQUIRED: Pace tracking (prefer GPS device)
OPTIONAL: Heart rate tracking (chest strap preferred), equipment as described in run workouts, generally bands and strength/stretching equipment
TESTING (Optional): After the first few weeks of the plan, perform field tests to determine swim FTP (threshold pace), bike FTP (threshold power), and run FTP (threshold pace and optional heart rate).


Training Load By Week
Average Weekly Breakdown
Average Weekly Training Hours: 07:41
Training Load By Week
Average Weekly Training Hours: 07:41
Average Weekly Breakdown

Mark Saroni

Paragon Training

"Winning is a mindset, not a spot on the podium."

Mark is a full-time triathlon coach residing in San Antonio, Tx. He is dedicated to helping develop athletes and challenging them to pursue excellence in all facets of their daily life. He believes that a high-performance mindset is attainable for ALL athletes of ALL ability levels. Mark enjoys coaching swimmers, cyclists, runners, and triathletes who count sport as an integral part of their lives and assisting them in achieving their goals.

Back to Plan Details

Sample Day 1

Pull buoy- ankles/knees/thigh

WU: 200 swim of your choice

6x25 fast kick w/ board and fins on :20 RI

MS: See video for where to place buoy.

3x through the set below
2x25 w/ buoy at ankles on :10 RI
2x25 buoy at knees on :10 RI
2x25 buoy at thighs on :10 RI
4x25 swim w/ perfect form using hips to rotate on :10 RI
Rest 2:00 between rounds

CD: 100 easy swim

Sample Day 1

Foundation Work and Foam Rolling

Follow this routine:
Doesn't take a lot of time, but is challenging and works. The focus is all on the posterior chain (read back, glutes, hamstrings). 
This will make you a better handler on the bike, better climber, and help cut out lower back pain. These are the muscle groups that cyclists often ignore, and pay the penalty for.
Do some foam rolling and stretching after the foundation routine.

Sample Day 2

Z7 - Skill Development and Drill Routine

WU: jog 10min to a park or grassy field

MS: 1 round of 40 yards of each of the drills below
#1 forward arm circles w/ skip
#2 backward arm circles w/ skip
#3 skipping sideways
#4 The Ninja
#5 A skip
#6 B skip
#7 high knees
#8 butt kicks
#9 A skip/high knee
#10 Fast leg butt kick
#11 Fast leg B skip
#12 karaoke
#13 side shuffle
#14 cross over step
Stay relaxed and don't worry if you forget how to do a drill.

4x 100m faster efforts on track straightaway at Z3/Z4 pace. Recovery is walk back to the start.

CD: 10min jog back

Sample Day 2

Hip Mobility/Stretching

Spend 10min doing these hip exercises.

Sample Day 3

Z1 - Easy Spin

Real Easy

Sample Day 4

Active stretch + ez jog

Complete 10min of active stretching then ez jog for prescribed time

Sample Day 4

Ancillary strength session

-done after primary endurance session of the day.
-assumed already some temperature in the tissue.

-light implement power.
--Halo slam:

--Then some simple strength focused on filling OTHER buckets :
--SLDL :
--Push ups or variation (dumbbells bench press?)
--some posterior chain lower body move : Barbell DL, trap bar DL, weighted hip bridge, Single leg deadlift? You choose.
--TRX Rows
--Pull ups or assisted pull ups
--Cable chop or lift :
--Kettlebell Suitcase carry

**1-3 SETS and 4-6 reps PER movement

Stretch, fluids and calories. Done.

Triathlon: 12 Week Beginner/Intermediate Foundation

$126.00 - Buy Now