This is a one-week plan to be used by the triathlete who has just completed a short-course triathlon (sprint- or Olympic-distance). The plan starts on the Monday following the race and takes the user safely, day-by-day through a gradual return to normal training. Training volume gradually increases with changes in intensity remaining small throughout. The emphasis is on physical and mental recovery, skill enhancement and aerobic endurance fitness. At the end of this one-week plan the athlete will be ready to start Base 3 or Build 1 training (see The Triathlete's Training Bible for periodization details) in preparation for the next race of the season.
Ride on a mostly flat course or indoor trainer staying only in heart rate or power zone 1. Cadence should be comfortable. If it begins to feel like you are working at a harder effort than z1 normally produces, stop the workout and stretch. That's all today. Otherwise, rest and recover. Stretch after.
Ride easily for 1.5 hours on a mostly flat course or indoor trainer in zone 1 heart rate or power. Keep it easy. Your cadence should be comfortably high. Pay attention to your intensity. Easy! Stretch after.
Ride about 2 hours in zones 1 and 2 (HR or power) on a flat to gently rolling course (or indoor trainer). Avoid z3 and higher. Focus on a smooth spinning of the pedals at a comfortably high cadence. Stretch after.
Run about 1 hour on a mostly flat course. Best on a soft surface (grass, dirt, gravel, treadmill). Warm-up about 20 minutes gradually increasing the effort/pace. Then run 30 minutes steady in low HR zone 2 (Friel zone system--see Triathlete's Training Bible). If possible, do this on a measured course so you know what the pace was for the 30 minutes (or use a speed-distance device). Do not exceed low HR zone 2. Cool down and walk for a few minutes after. ALTERNATIVE: By today you should be feeling as if you are fully recovered from the race last weekend. If not, reduce this run to 45 minutes in zone 1 only and consider taking tomorrow off from training.