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Olympic distance triathlon 12 week plan.


Dara Wittenberg

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12 Weeks

Plan Specs

triathlon olympic beginner

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Plan Description

This training plan is for the novice triathlete who wants to complete his or her first Olympic distance triathlon and can (in separate workouts) currently ride for 45 minutes, run for 30 minutes, and swim 200m without stopping.
We start with approximately 3.5 hours of training in week 1 and will build to between 6 and 8 hours of training.
Each discipline has at least two workouts per week, but only one workout a day on most weeks.


Average Weekly Breakdown

Workouts Weekly Average Longest Workout
1:42 hrs 1:35 hrs
0:11 hrs 0:40 hrs
0:51 hrs 1:00 hrs
—— ——
0:47 hrs 2:00 hrs
Workouts Per Week Weekly Average Longest Workout
1:42 hrs 1:35 hrs
0:11 hrs 0:40 hrs
0:51 hrs 1:00 hrs
—— ——
0:47 hrs 2:00 hrs

Training Load By Week

Dara Wittenberg


Detailed, personalized plans and advice on training, racing, and improving your performance. We will dial in training and racing intensities using power, HR, RPE, and cadence. We will utilize mental skills training to make you pro- level tough and ready to handle anything race day can throw at you, and we will use drills to improve form in all three disciplines.
$400/ month and tailored around your goals, abilities, and lifestyle.

Sample Day 1


Drills and steady: do 4 x 30 seconds of each of the drills with 1 min rest intervals (RI’s), then ride at RPE 6-7 (moderate effort) trying to smooth out your stroke. The drills serve two purposes: they allow you to work on your stroke so that you become more efficient and get more bang for your buck, and they help to warm you up. Doing the drills at the beginning of the workout allows you to do them when your body is fresh so you can do them perfectly without fatigue affecting your form.

Sample Day 2


Read over the form points covered in the info sheet and then do a warm up that consists of 4 x 25m of each drill, with as much rest as you need between repeats.

MS: 200m kicking with fins- working on initiating the kick from your hips.

200m pulling (if you don't have paddles, then just focus on the pull of your stroke)- keep your elbow higher than your wrist, and try to get your forearm vertical in the water as soon as possible.

CD: 200m working on distance per stroke (DPS). try to take the fewest strokes you can on each length. Note how many strokes you took per 25m.

Swimming is the most technical and form dependent of all 3 sports and requires patience! Do not rush the drills, and focus on one form point at a time per drill.

If you have access to a swim instructor (ask at your local pool, or look online at this workout could be replaced with a coaching session. It will be money well spent!

Use fins for the drills as it will make them much easier and you can focus on the form points more.


Sample Day 3


Warm up (WU)- as with all the workouts, the first 10+ minutes are spent gradually warming up. A good warm up will allow you to work hard during the rest of the workout.

Main set (MS): Once you are warm do 2 of each of the drills with 60-90" walking recoveries. During the strides: Focus on keeping a high cadence and a mid-foot landing. Strides are like relaxed speed- ease on up to the fastest pace you can hold with good form and hold it there till the 100m are finished.

Once the strides are complete, run for 20 minutes at a moderate effort, trying to incorporate the form points you were working on during the strides.

Cool down (CD) 5 mins easy.

Sample Day 4


WU: 10 mins spinning at a comfy cadence in the small chain ring (where your pedals attach)
MS: 4 x 30 seconds of each drill (1 min RI). Once these are complete, ride at a moderate effort for 20 mins. During this ride, Work on bike handling skills: steer with your hips, not your hands, and practice cornering. As you corner, keep your outside pedal down and look through the corner to where you are going (not the ground directly in front of you).

Sample Day 5


WU: 2 x 25m of each drill, with as much rest as you need between repeats. Really focus on rotating evenly to both sides today. Notice which side you have a hard time breathing on- Are you rotating enough to that side so you do not have to lift your head to breathe?

MS: 10 x 50m easy w/ 30 seconds RI's. Focus on rotation to both sides during the main set.

5 x 100m easy w/ 30 seconds RI's. Focus on keeping your head in line with your body when you breathe.

CD: 50 m easy.

Sample Day 6


WU: 10 mins easy. Then 1 each of the running drills detailed in the info packet with walking recoveries.

MS: Base run at RPE 6-7 (moderate effort) for 25 mins.

CD: 5 mins easy.

Sample Day 8


WU: 5 mins in the small chain ring (SCR) spinning at 80+ rpm.
MS: 6 x 30 second repeats of the drills with 1 minute RI's. Listen to your stroke as you do the drills- does it sound even? Are both legs equally strong? if not, do one extra individual leg training (ILT) with the weak leg.
Once the drills are done, ride at a moderate effort for 40 mins.
CD: easy with remaining time.

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