Teachers Who Triathlon

author : mscotthall
comments : 3

Often we face the dilemma of putting together a training plan for the school year that fits into our busy days. I thought I would share some ideas on scheduling your training.

It always amazes me how many teachers are into this sport. I am always so surprised with the amount of teachers that I run into in our triathlon community. I don't know of it is our desire to stay as young as our students are or because we like the confidence that tri-training gives us as we stand in front of 30 judgmental 16 year-olds all day long.

I know that often we face the dilemma of putting together a training plan for the school year that fits into our busy days. I thought I would share some ideas on scheduling your training around our early days.

Background

I am a HS US History teacher and I have already gone through an entire school year (last year) as a "triathlete in training" so hopefully, I can provide some insight. Keep in mind that I am in my 7th year of teaching, so I do not have to do a great deal of planning and time management has become much easier. My school day starts at 7 a.m., but I am usually one of the first people in the building as I show up at around 6:15. This helps me justify myself to all of those people giving me dirty looks when I am headed for my car at 2 p.m., minutes after the last bell rings.

I also have an eight month-old daughter and a wife who teaches in the same school as me (she is currently on leave until Sept '07). My wife is also an avid exerciser, martial artist, and runner, which helps because she understands my addiction…I mean dedication…to training. My wife staying home does not provide me with extra training time, as the majority of my wife’s training time takes place in the evenings. She does not bring our daughter with her to the daycare facility at the gym or dojo during the school day because we have decided that that is unnecessary.

Possible training ideas

I try to set up my training as practically as possible. I follow a few rules:

1. All days off are during the week. In my opinion, it makes no sense to take off on the only two days out of the seven that you do not have to spend seven-plus hours at work. So, if you want to work out five days a week, you only have to train on three school days.

2. I do all of my long training days on the weekends. This takes a lot of stress off of me as I am not trying to fit in ten-mile runs before school. I use the weekdays mostly for maintenance, and the weekends for breakthrough or milestone workouts. (Read Brad Kearns book, Breakthrough Triathlon Training. He puts a lot of scheduling issues into perspective.)

3. I wake up at 4:30 am. Now, I understand that I am a guy, and I am a guy with a shaved head, so the time I need to get ready for school is minimal. My wife says that women would never be able to do this. I disagree—if you have to, wake up at 4 a.m. I know it can be difficult to get up this early, but believe me, you will get used to it.

Do your running workouts this early. I say do only the running workouts this early, because it is safer than biking in the dark. Get a bunch of reflective gear, and don’t wear your headphones (as you need your hearing to make up for loss of sight). If you do not have to travel to a pool, which may be a waste of time in the morning, by all means, there is no reason why you can’t get in a good swim before school as well. Now, you will only have to work out one day after school, (check the sample schedule below.)

4. Do your long weekend workouts early! I get up very early to do my long runs, rides, and swims on the weekends. This helps me have enough time to still be the devoted husband and father that I strive to be every day. If I get back from my long run before my wife and baby are even awake, everybody wins!!!

5. Use your off periods wisely. I often see a lot of teachers just hanging out on their preps and/or lunch periods. Use this time to do all of the paperwork that will get in the way of training.

So, a week of training may look something like the following (individual times will vary depending on your level). Keep in mind, that I am not a coach or an expert. Remember that you will not be doing any Ironmans—or even half-IM's for that matter—by following this kind of a schedule. I think those will require a lot more time. And remember that we have the added luxury of not having to work in the summer, which is when the vast majority of us will amp up our training for the in-season.

Example 1 (6 days):

M  - Off
T   - Run 0:50 (am)
W - Swim 0:45 (pm)
TH - Run 0:45 hills or speed work (am)
F   - Bike 1 hour (use a trainer or spin bike or spin class if you have to)
S   - Bike 2:30 (long bike) and Swim 0:40
Su - Run 2:00 (long run)


Example 2: (5 days):

M   - Off
T    - Run 0:45 (am)  Swim 0:45 (pm)
W  - Bike 1 hour (use a trainer or spin bike or spin class if you have to)
TH - Run 0:45 hills or speed work (am)
F    - Off
S    - Bike 2:30 (long bike) and Swim 0:40
Su  - Run 2:00 (long run)
 

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date: December 8, 2006

mscotthall

I am a high school history teacher. I live on Long Island with my wife,11 year old daughter Madison and 7 year old daughter, Cassidy.

avatarmscotthall

I am a high school history teacher. I live on Long Island with my wife,11 year old daughter Madison and 7 year old daughter, Cassidy.

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