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2011-06-02 2:37 PM

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Subject: Training for first triathlon in 5 weeks

Simply put, can it be done?  Heres a little background.  I was a long distance track runner in HS and running has not been much of a problem for me.  I have been an avid cyclist for about 3 years.  Swimming is new to me.  I have always known how to swim its just about getting my body conditioned. 

So all that being said I plan on doing a sprint distance 'tri for fun' on July 9th.  What im looking for is feedback on whether or not I am being realistic.  I believe I can do it, but what do those of you who have experience have to say.

 

Thank you much!



2011-06-02 2:50 PM
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Subject: RE: Training for first triathlon in 5 weeks
outcrnru - 2011-06-02 2:37 PM

Simply put, can it be done?  Heres a little background.  I was a long distance track runner in HS and running has not been much of a problem for me.  I have been an avid cyclist for about 3 years.  Swimming is new to me.  I have always known how to swim its just about getting my body conditioned. 

So all that being said I plan on doing a sprint distance 'tri for fun' on July 9th.  What im looking for is feedback on whether or not I am being realistic.  I believe I can do it, but what do those of you who have experience have to say.

 

Thank you much!

 

How far is the swim?  Is this an open water swim or a pool swim?  Will you be able to put your feet down or hang onto the wall? 

If you're talking about a 300 yard pool swim where you can put your feet down, I'd say you'll probably be ok.  If you're talking about a 750m open water swim I'd say go for something later in the year when you've properly trained.  5 weeks isn't enough time to get comfortable doing that distance, especially your first tri. 

Here's my recommendation (based on the assumption this is a pool swim):  Get in the pool, now.  And get some lessons.  Go as much as physically possible.  Make sure to get lessons really soon, you don't want to reinforce bad habits, they're hard to correct later down the road.  5 weeks isn't a lot of time so you'll need to put the work in. 

Realistically you should be able to do it, but I have to ask, why the rush?  Why not properly train, put a plan together and be properly prepared for race day?

 

2011-06-02 2:52 PM
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2011-06-02 2:52 PM
in reply to: #3529593

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Subject: RE: Training for first triathlon in 5 weeks
I'm certainly no expert, but it sounds like you are in pretty decent shape.  I did my first triathlon with four weeks to train and had no cycling experience.  Get in the pool, have someone look at your swimming, and rock it.  That's probably not going to work for everyone, but if you have the conditioning to do 2 out of the 3 then five weeks is plenty of time.  Good luck.  
2011-06-02 2:59 PM
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Subject: RE: Training for first triathlon in 5 weeks
strostertag - 2011-06-02 3:50 PM
outcrnru - 2011-06-02 2:37 PM

Simply put, can it be done?  Heres a little background.  I was a long distance track runner in HS and running has not been much of a problem for me.  I have been an avid cyclist for about 3 years.  Swimming is new to me.  I have always known how to swim its just about getting my body conditioned. 

So all that being said I plan on doing a sprint distance 'tri for fun' on July 9th.  What im looking for is feedback on whether or not I am being realistic.  I believe I can do it, but what do those of you who have experience have to say.

 

Thank you much!

 

How far is the swim?  Is this an open water swim or a pool swim?  Will you be able to put your feet down or hang onto the wall? 

If you're talking about a 300 yard pool swim where you can put your feet down, I'd say you'll probably be ok.  If you're talking about a 750m open water swim I'd say go for something later in the year when you've properly trained.  5 weeks isn't enough time to get comfortable doing that distance, especially your first tri. 

Here's my recommendation (based on the assumption this is a pool swim):  Get in the pool, now.  And get some lessons.  Go as much as physically possible.  Make sure to get lessons really soon, you don't want to reinforce bad habits, they're hard to correct later down the road.  5 weeks isn't a lot of time so you'll need to put the work in. 

Realistically you should be able to do it, but I have to ask, why the rush?  Why not properly train, put a plan together and be properly prepared for race day?

 

x2....have you been in the pool yet training?  ifso, how did it go?  if not go work out and let us know and then we could give you better feedback

OWS is a lot different, and many people starting out even in just the poool with great swim/bike endurance have a hardtime getting their breathing rythm down when they restart swimming  they are gasping for air (that was me 8 months ago, now I can go 3500m)

so go work out in the pool and see how it goes...it seems you run bike are great already!

good luck

2011-06-02 4:49 PM
in reply to: #3529593

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Subject: RE: Training for first triathlon in 5 weeks

thanks for the great feedback!  I have started pool training in a 25m pool.  With breaks I do about 800-1000m per workout.  The tri includes a half-mile ows, I think .5 miles is about 800m.  Also I am working with a local trainer that is helping me with ows technique and psychological prep.

My training program has me swimming, running, and cycling 2x per week each with two days of rest, one of the rest days I do yoga.  I hope that helps further with your feedback and again, much appreciated!



2011-06-02 5:30 PM
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Subject: RE: Training for first triathlon in 5 weeks
outcrnru - 2011-06-02 5:49 PM

thanks for the great feedback!  I have started pool training in a 25m pool.  With breaks I do about 800-1000m per workout.  The tri includes a half-mile ows, I think .5 miles is about 800m.  Also I am working with a local trainer that is helping me with ows technique and psychological prep.

My training program has me swimming, running, and cycling 2x per week each with two days of rest, one of the rest days I do yoga.  I hope that helps further with your feedback and again, much appreciated!

 

than you should be good to go.....good luck!!

2011-06-02 9:25 PM
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Subject: RE: Training for first triathlon in 5 weeks
I think you should be ok with completing the race. My suggestion would be to try ASAP to do an OWS. There is a huge difference in swimming 800yrd in a pool and 800yrd in an OWS. Lots of things are different (Possibly water temp, current, not being able to see, etc). I think that if you are able to get out and do an OWS before the race it would be GREATLY beneficial for you. I had never done an OWS until the day of my first Tri and needless to say it was alot harder than I anticipated. Good luck in your training and your race. Let us know how you did.
2011-06-02 10:31 PM
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Subject: RE: Training for first triathlon in 5 weeks
I did this last year, but with little prior endurance training and the race was tough during the run.  If you have good cardiovascular endurance, then the sprint distance will be easy.  From my novice perspective - If you already have a good cycling base, then try doing an open water swim of a little longer than the race distance.  Also, try a bike ride followed by at least a one mile run.  It is a strange feeling, running immediately after hopping off a bike.  I trained by only trying each swim, bike, run distance individually and did better than expected, albeit slow.
2011-06-03 4:53 AM
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Subject: RE: Training for first triathlon in 5 weeks

  I would guess that YES, you definately can do it.  First off, you have the track background and if you are still in good shape, then your fitness level should be fine.  The swim will probably be where you would want to focus a lot of energy on.  There is a difference between being confident in a swim and actually being competitive.  On my first tri, (olympic) I breast-stroked the entire way.  Never got tired, never quit.  but my time was like 52 minutes I think (very long).  After learning the proper freestyle stroke, I can now do it closer to 27 minutes. 

   I have never done a sprint before but they are obviously the best way to go.  Another big thing for you is going to be pacing.  You can't go "all out" on each event...only the last part of the run!  I would recommend getting in the water 3-4 times per week.  It didn't take me more than a month or so to nail down a good freestyle stroke.  It is just a matter of training your body to move a certain way.  Staying calm and relaxed is also important.  Good luck, let everyone know how your first Tri goes!

2011-06-03 9:41 AM
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Subject: RE: Training for first triathlon in 5 weeks
Thanks again for all the input.  I just found out at my gym last night there is a trainer who specializes in tri's and particular focuses on OWS so I will be working with him one day a week in addition to my regular training program.  I feel confident and am currently not experiencing any swim "anxiety" but we will see if that changes, lol.  I'll let you know how it goes, I dont have any expectations of time, just looking to finish (and beat my friends sister who is competing in the same tri


2011-06-08 2:15 PM
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Subject: RE: Training for first triathlon in 5 weeks

I'm doing a very similar thing.  I decided with 5.5 weeks to train that I'd do my first triathlon - a sprint .5m / 17m / 3.1m s/b/r.  I had a background in competitive swimming, but hadn't been in the pool, ridden a bike longer than 5 miles nor run more than about 2 miles in more than a decade.  I was in OK shape, but had spent most of the last decade either weightlifting or walking for exercise. 

I hopped in the water that night and swam a mile, the next night ran 3 miles, then the next night rode 10  miles.  That first week of workouts was tough - but I'm glad I did that as a starting point - it allowed me to slowly work my mileages up and eventually work on speed.  For each of the first 4 weeks I hit swimming, biking and running each twice a week, and added "bricks" of biking / running beginning at the end of week 2. 

By the time I was in training week 4, I was doing 110% - 150% of the race mileage on each of the sports, each workout. 

I basically trained hard for 4.5 weeks and am now in my "taper" week - with a reduction in mileage, but focusing on speed.  I plan to fully take off 2 days prior to the race to rest and be fresh for the race. 

My race is this coming weekend - I'll post a "race report" after I'm done.  Much like the initial poster, my goals include 1) finishing 2) having fun 3) set a "baseline" from which to measure future progress.

2011-06-08 2:32 PM
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Subject: RE: Training for first triathlon in 5 weeks

I did my first tri coming off of a marathon and duathlon, and 2 1/2 weeks of swimming. The latter was stupid but I survived by spending 4 days a week at the pool with a coach. Time was terrible for the swim but bike was ok and run decent. I used a wetsuit and it helped. No matter what, practice an OWS so you don't panic first time in cruddy lake/river water. It's seriously different when there is no line to follow on the bottom.

Rule 1: You should NEVER let yourself get talked into using your iPhone to sign up for an event at the post-race beer bash. Especially when your friends have tri backgrounds and you do not!

I'm doing another one in 3 weeks, it was a lot of fun

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