8 Week Beginner Olympic Training Plan
May 9, 2005
Who should do this program?
Olympic distance athletes should have completed at least one Olympic distance triathlon and/or have a competitive background in swimming, biking or running. The athlete should be able to swim 500 yards consecutively / bike 15 mile consecutively / run 3 miles consecutively
If you have trouble reaching the minimum standards in any of these distances, this program may not be right for you.
What if I'm overweight?
Overweight people should always get a Drs.’ clearance before starting a training program. If the run workouts are too demanding, then a run/walk strategy can be employed. Begin with 1 minute walk/1minute run and eventually running 8 minutes and walking 2 minutes.
Is this for me?
If you are looking to improve your Olympic time this program will work for you.
The program setup
The program is set up in 3 weeks blocks. Two harder weeks with one recovery week. I am a big proponent of testing and I would strongly recommend testing yourself every 4-6 weeks.
This plan uses heart-rate training zones for intensity specific training. There are also a few weeks with some additional testing in this plan, see See 'Related Links' at bottom for testing protocol and how to determine and setup your heart-rate zones.
For most of you this program made be difficult at first, but you can always back off the longer workouts if you feel like it’s taking too much out of you or if its taking days to recover from a workout. On the other hand some of you may think it’s too easy, so if this is the case, you are welcome to add volume to this program. I would advise doing this at an easy effort and making the additional training time added to the longer workouts.
About this plan
When these plans were created, my objective was to deliver a program that was balanced amongst the three sports, was challenging yet structured enough to allow enough time between the more difficult workouts in order to get the full benefit of the program. These plans are generic and can be used by anyone who is looking to improve.
The benefit of these plans over others is that I use a proven strategy that has helped hundreds of beginners, experienced and even Ironman triathletes reach their goals. My philosophy involves using a heart rate monitor, which I believe is essential for a beginner. A HRM allows you to know when you are tired, when you are rested, when you are exceeding your limits, and when you are right on target.
I have had many triathletes come to me for coaching that knew a lot about triathlon, but knew little about how to structure their workouts. This program takes the guesswork out of your training and allows you to enjoy your training and even more importantly, not waste time with meaningless workouts. After a few weeks, you will see the results for yourself if you follow the plan. Here is the deal I will make with you: I will provide the training plan to get you to reach your goals and all you have to bring are the 3 D’s: A little Discipline, some Desire, and some Determination. Get started on the right program today and you will be one step closer to that personal best, that first time finish, or just the feeling of being fit and being in the BEST shape of YOUR life!
Weight Training and Core Strength
The program should be fairly balanced between core and strength training. You will be using AA1 to AA4 for this program.
Good Luck in your Sprint Distance Triathlon!
USAT Level II Coach
USAC Expert Coach