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Zero to IRONMAN 8-20hrs/week beginner


Mike Bridge

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32 Weeks

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Plan Description

This 32 week plan designed for those who need to build aerobic capacity from a low base level. The length of the plan gives time to progress from a low weekly volume (8hrs) to a maximum of 20hrs. The long lead in means that the maximum volume weeks can be sustained for longer allowing a greater build up of aerobic capacity and muscular endurance.
This makes the plan ideal for beginners who are still keen to put in a sub 13hr time for their 1st event.

The plan uses a mix of RPE and heart rate to measure the intensity of effort but does not require any particular equipment.
The program develops in 4 week blocks with every 4th week being an unloading week. There is repetition of session in each 4 week block so that the athlete can easily remember the sessions, easily monitor progress and gain valuable nuero-muscular adaptation that come with repeating sessions.

The program does not include any gym or specific resistance work in order to allow more time to develop discipline specific adaptations and aerobic capacity. Sessions are included in each discipline to specifically develop muscular strength and power. In particular the high volume of low cadence work on the bike set.

Training Plan Sample Week


Average Weekly Breakdown

Workouts Weekly Average Longest Workout
Run x2
2:03 hrs 3:00 hrs
Swim x2
2:37 hrs 1:45 hrs
Bike x2
5:23 hrs 6:00 hrs
Brick x1
1:19 hrs 2:15 hrs
Workouts Per Week Weekly Average Longest Workout
2:03 hrs 3:00 hrs
2:37 hrs 1:45 hrs
5:23 hrs 6:00 hrs
1:19 hrs 2:15 hrs

Training Load By Week

This plan works best with the following fitness devices:

  • GPS

All supported devices

Mike Bridge


Swimming technique improvement, Triathlon racing and skills, training program design

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