Olympic Triathlon pre competition phase

Average Weekly Training Hours 05:20
Training Load By Week
Average Weekly Training Hours 05:20
Training Load By Week

You should have build a solid base level of fitness and progressed through a build phase of training prior to starting this plan.

This Pre Competition phase of training plan has been prepared to help you work more on the specifics of your goal A race.

This time is an opportunity to do some local “training races” to become used to the race paced efforts.

During this phase of training, the focus will move away from developing muscular strength to increasing muscular endurance, strength and power, it will include less important races, lactate tolerance more, interval sessions and an opportunity to practice race tactics, such as open water swimming, transitions and brick sessions

The plan itself will develop your lactate system, or race pace, and build on the aerobic base fitness you have developed. It is the anareobic or speed work that you need to go faster, which will feel hard to start with in week 1, getting easier as the weeks go by ass you adapt and build your anaerobic system

The plan will follow a 4 week cycle of easy, medium, hard and recovery weeks based on hourly volume, and will provide you with an increase in VO2 max, an improvement in lactate buffering and removal, plus an improved resistance to fatigue from interval sessions.

Weekly training hours range from 5:15 to a maximum between 8:15 and 11:00. There is some flexibility built into the plan to accommodate individual differences. For example there is no time posted for the swim workouts. Obviously there can be big differences in swimming abilities between people with a competitive swim background and those just getting into swimming. Some of the run and bike workouts also have ranges built into the workouts.

Sample Day 1
0:45:00
Endurance spinning

Use the cadence mode if you have this available. Spin on the high end of your comfortable range in the small chain ring in the 1-2 heart rate zones on a flat to gently rolling course. Allow your feet and legs to relax while spinning. Note and record your average cadence for the ride when done.

Sample Day 2
0:45:00
LT pace, 3M

BT: Tempo. Long warm-up. Then run 3 miles continuous at 10k pace + 10-20 seconds/mile on a flat course. Relax. Listen to breathing.

Sample Day 2
0:40:00
Swim Golf

Swim several long, easy sets to warm-up. Focus on form. Then swim 4 x 50 at your T-pace with 1 minute rest intervals. Record your time for each 50 and count your strokes (both hands) for each 50. Add your time (seconds) for each 50 to the total number of strokes for each 50 for your score. For example, a 50 in 45 sec with 19 strokes each length would be 83 (45 + 19 + 19 = 83). The lower your score the better. Record your scores in your log. Cool down with several long, easy sets working on form.

Sample Day 3
1:00:00
CI, TT, hill/headwind

BT: Time trial cruise intervals. On time trial bike do 3-4 x 6-8 minutes on a 2% hill (or into a headwind) in heart rate 3 zone. Big gear-60-70 rpm. Aero position. 2 minute recoveries.

Sample Day 4
1:00:00
Brick olympic tri anaerobic

BT: Set up your bike on a trainer at a track or other site with a measured, out-and-back or circular course. Warm-up on the bike for 15 minutes elevating heart rate to the 3 zone. Transition to a 400-meter run at 10k pace. Transition back to the bike for a 5-minute ride, as follows: Spin easily for 2 minutes to recover and then build heart rate to the 4-5a zone and hold this for 3 minutes. Transition to an 800-meter run at 5k race pace. Repeat this pattern of 5 minutes on the bike followed by an 800-meter run 3 more times. After the last one cool down on the bike by spinning easily for 10 minutes. This workout will take approximately 1 hour.

Sample Day 6
1:00:00
No zone 3 or above.

Heart rate zone 1-2 on gently rolling course. NO zone 3. Walk hills, if necessary, to hold heart rate down.

Sample Day 6
1:00:00
Pace Control

Warm Up

200 FC
100 BC
100 single arm

Main Set : 80% effort

400 FC Bilateral every 5 - recovery 30 secs
2x 200m Pull + Paddles + t shirts (10 secs between 200’s), recovery 30 secs after both
4x 100 FC Pace control on T pace - 1 min recovery – to stretch
8x 50m Dolphin kick out underwater/ fly back all with fins – 20 recovery
16x 25m FC (alternate stroke count -2/ power push/ glide and touch thigh/ catch up) 10 rest


Cool Down: 60% effort

100 FC super slow
100 BC

Nick de Meyer
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Sound Coaching

Nick has been a Level 3 British Triathlon Coach for 10 years, and has been a master endurance coach with Training Bible Coaching UK in that time. He is also a Training Peaks Level 1 Coach, and formerly was a Regional Development Coach for the South East region for British Triathlon.

Alongside his online coaching business, Nick also runs Speedy Swimming which specialise in 1-2-1 front crawl technique lessons, endless pool swim video analysis, swim clinics and group swim sessions