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Extreme Triathlon Half Iron Distance 16 Week Plan


Doug Stewart

All plans by this Coach


16 Weeks

Plan Specs

triathlon half ironman intermediate advanced masters power based hr based pace based

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Plan Description

This is an extreme triathlon plan - designed for races of half iron distance or similar. It has workouts you tailor for the race, including consideration for the tougher terrain of the the bike and run.
Bespoke workouts tailored for the swim, bike and run, including consideration for the course profile, the challenging bike course and unique challenge presented by the run.

It is 16 weeks and follows a typical pattern of 2 or 3 build weeks followed by a recovery week. There is a 3 week taper period.

It has been designed by an IRONMAN Certified Coach, who has completed multiple extreme triathlong races, including the Swissman Xtreme Triathlon, Celtmand Xtreme Triathlon and Swedeman Xtreme Triathlon.


Average Weekly Breakdown

Workouts Weekly Average Longest Workout
4:16 hrs 2:00 hrs
5:36 hrs 4:30 hrs
0:27 hrs 0:50 hrs
Workouts Per Week Weekly Average Longest Workout
4:16 hrs 2:00 hrs
5:36 hrs 4:30 hrs
0:27 hrs 0:50 hrs

Training Load By Week

Doug Stewart

TMR Coaching

TMR Coaching provides bespoke coaching packages and training plans for some of the toughest events on the planet.
Specialising in endurance events from triathlons to ultra marathons and sportives, we have the right package to suit your training and racing requirements.
Making use of the latest technologies and software (WKO5, Best Bike Split, Running Power Meters) TMR Coaching are able to ensure accurate analysis and optimal training strategies.

Sample Day 1

Functional Threshold Power/Heart Rate

This is done on an indoor trainer using a powermeter. If you are using Heart Rate (HR) then still do this test, and use average HR data.

Warm up 20 minutes at easy to endurance pace.
3 x 1 minutes with 1 minute recovery with high cadence around 100rpm.
5 minute easy riding

Main set start with a 5 minute all out effort.
10 minutes easy riding
20 minutes time trial - this is the section you will use to determine your FTP
If using HR rather than power meter then do 25 minutes

Cool down 10 minutes to 15 minutes easy cycling.

Power Data
Once you have downloaded your data you need to determine your average power for the 20 minute interval. Take your average power and multiple by 0.95 to calculate your FTP. So if your average power is 305watts x 0.95 = 290w is your Functional Threshold Power.

Heart Rate
If using Heart Rate then take your average heart rate from the final 20 minutes of the 25 minute interval. Multiple this number by 0.95 to calculate your Lactate Threshold.

This training plan is based on 6 Training Zones for Power and 7 Training Zones for Heart Rate which can be found in Training Peaks.

Heart Rate training zones are based on Lactate Threshold - Joel Friel for Cycling.

Power is based on Threshold Power - Andy Coggan (6).

Use your FTP or Lactate Threshold HR and put in the Zones within Setting in Training Peaks to calculate your relevant Zones which will be used for future work outs.

Sample Day 2


20 min Very Easy Run

Sample Day 3

Swim Test Set

This swim is designed to determine your Threshold Swim Pace (T-Pace). This will be used in a number of swims sessions.

Warm up: 200m building speed each 50m (slow-medium-faster-fastest).

Rest 30 sec.

Then 5 x 400m (10 sec recoveries) building speed on each 100m (slow-medium-faster-fastest).
Recover 10 seconds after last one.

Then swim a 500m time trial. All out.
Your average 100 pace for this is your T-Pace for future workouts.

Then swim easy, 100m cool down.

Sample Day 5

Lactate Threshold Test for Running

This test is designed to determine your Lactate Threshold Heart Rate and Pace.

Warm Up for 15 minutes.
In this WU include some bum flicks, high knees, walking lunges and 4 x 20 second accelerations (try to run each acceleration faster than the previous - not a flat out sprint, but getting Heart Rate up, 40 seconds recovery between reps).
Want to be very warmed up ahead of Main Set

Main Set:
Run a 30 minute time trial on flat course/track. Punch HR monitor 'lap' button 10 minutes into Time Trial. Average heart rate for last 20 minutes predicts Lactate threshold heart rate (LTHR).

Cool Down:
Easy run to make time up to 1 hour. Walk last few minutes.

Sample Day 6

Endurance Ride

2hr Ride in Zones 1 - 2 (easy pace)

Check your race route course profile and identify the distance and amount of elevation.
Use this as a basis for your training rides by aiming to simulate the same amount of climbing as your race.

For example if your race is 180km long and features 2200m of ascent then you should aim to ride 12m to 13m per km (2200/180 = 12.2).
If this ride is 50km then you would aim for 611m of ascent. (50 x 12.2)

Sample Day 7

Endurance Run

HR Zone should be in Zone 1 - 2 for majority of this run (it may go in to Zone 3 - 4 for uphills by try to keep in Zones 1 and 2).

Look at your race route and identify the terrain, (woods, trails, rocky) and try to run on terrain similar to the race for all your weekend long runs.

Like with the bike identify the amount of ascent per km and replicate this for your runs.
e.g. if running 42km and climbing 2000m in the race then for your Endurance runs aim to climb 48m per km (2000/42 = 47.6m per km).
This will get your legs used to the level of ascent of the race.

Sample Day 8

Technique Swim

Swim designed to work on your technique and swimming efficiently.
Swim Smooth
Have details on a lot of the drills mentioned. It also has a Swim Type which may be of value and allow you to tailor the drills listed to benefit you more.

The swimming element of this programme is designed to be progressive, with the initial period focussing on technique in the pool and being efficient, moving more on to speed and speed endurance and the final phase focussing on drills to help open water swimming and bespoke elements linked to the Xtri swim.

Distances are fine in either yards or meters.

Warm Up (WU):
400 Freestyle
6 x 100 as:
100 - swim with closed fists
100 - freestyle

Main Set (MS):
200 as:
2 x 50 kick on side
50 Broken Arrow, 30 seconds rest

5 x 100 at T-Pace on 10 seconds rest

200 as Single Arm:
2 x (25 L Arm, 2 R Arm, 50 freestyle) 30 seconds rest

2 x 100 at T-Pace on 10 seconds rest

Cool Down (CD):
200 with Pull Buoy (and Paddles if you have them)

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