OFFSEASON

by rchackman

OFFSEASON…….Hello new FRIEND !

The season can get overwhelming at times. Some weeks I felt like all I did was swim, bike, run and work. Training anywhere from 12 -18 hours a week during the season leaves little time for much else. Even if i worked  9-6, with a one hour lunch break, thats 9 hours of my day. Waking up, preparing and getting to work is usually an hour-long ordeal. Thats 10 hours. I usually aim for 8 hours of sleep. That’s 18 hours accounted for each day from Tuesday through Friday. That number does not include time for workouts, dinner and other things.  During the season, the training was really structured. Most weeks looked very similar with 3 swims, 3 bikes and 3 runs.

That being said, I am seriously looking forward to cutting workout volume down and mixing it up. Right now, I am crafting an offseason schedule where I have the flexibility to choose from a number of different workout options. I also plan to keep a routine where I do NOT have to do any particular workout on any given day. This way, I will have the freedom to choose my workout based on my mood….

 

Therefore, instead of focusing on daily workouts, I am more concerned with weekly goals. This type of focus will give me the latitutde to change my schedule each week and choose daily workouts to suit my mood. Some weeks I might emphasize the run or bike. Other weeks I may do more swimming, my weakest discipline. However, the central aspect of my offseason plan is improving core strength and consistently strength training. I believe both of these things will make me a better triathlete come next season. This is but one aspect of becoming a good triathlete as Joe Friel pointed out. Core strength is important because it spills over into every activity. I also feel strength training will help me establish a strong foundation to work with for next season. I plan on doing core and strentgth training about three times a week. I can pretty much do both in the same gym session. I also plan on incorporating some other activities in the mix, mainly yoga for flexibility.

 

I hear you Mr. Friel…… I want to get a bike fit this offseason. After playing around with my fit last season, I realized there are many different positions I may like but I want to find a position that is powerful, aerodynamic and comfortable all at the same time. I hope that isn’t asking for too much?

 

I also have yet to total last season’s workouts, which provides seemingly endless amounts of information to analyze. I am in the process of gathering my workout totals, time totals, run miles, run time total, bike time total, etc. This has also prompted me to join Training Peaks so I will not have to do all the math come this time next year.

 

The only other thing I can think of at this time pertains to gear changes for 2012. I literally cannot stop thinking about the Garmin Forerunner 910XT, which hits the shelves soon (I believe Garmin has delayed the release until February or March 2012). I am excited about the prospect of using one watch to record all of my swim, bike and run workouts. Read the review from DC Rainmaker. It seems like the 910XT can do anything besides actually run the race for you.

 

….and the most fun part of the offseason is picking out key races for 2012 that I want to do. On first glance, I am considering Great Floridian in Clermont, FL in late October. Also, I have yet to race a WTC event so I am strongly considering Ironman 70.3 Florida in May. All in all, I am really excited at the prospect of preparing for a new season. I know I have a lot to improve!

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