If you’ve been doing 45 minutes a day as we suggested last month, it’s time to up it to 60 minutes a day in this third month of training for an Olympic distance triathlon. You should be able to handle this workout change, and it will increase your energy levels and stamina for the final three months of training that will start in the new year.
Hopefully, you were able to get a bike by now. If not, you still have some time left over, because the weather may not be permitting you to ride outside very often right now. Depending on where you live, it could be dangerous. In the meantime, you can get an indoor trainer and ride your 60 minutes in front of the television if you want. It’s much warmer!
With the weather challenges, you may find it hard to get your workouts in. If you have access to a gym, that’s helpful. You can swim indoors; you can ride indoors; you can walk/run indoors. We don’t all live in sunny Arizona, so these are the options we have. If you don’t have a gym membership, this is the time of year many gyms run specials on trial memberships—go for it, and just make sure the gym has an indoor pool!
Doing your 60-minutes-a-day routine doesn’t have to be boring, either. You can mix up at the gym and do “mini triathlons” for your workouts. Swim for 20 minutes, and change into your biking gear. Then ride the exercise bike for 20 minutes before changing into your running outfit. Then use the treadmill for 20 minutes. This will get your body used to changing sports, long before the event comes. That’s a good thing.
Try these mini tris for a couple of your weekly workouts this month—but not all of them. Since you’re upping your workout time to 60 minutes, you can add an extra day of rest this month to help your body recover. So, you can still do focused 60-minute workouts in one discipline, once a week for each sport. Then, do the mini tris in the gym the two other days. This will create enough “change” in your routine that your body will have to adjust—and that adjustment will force your body to strengthen itself.
The final hurdle for this month is an obvious one: It’s the month of celebration, and the food and drink will be flowing all month long—including lots of sweets and sugars. You have to make sure you are eating and drinking properly through the month, or else you’re going to find yourself somewhat … heavy … come next month. Really focus on saying, “No!”, more often this December. You can still indulge here and there, because you have to live life. However, saying no more often makes the rest of the training season more enjoyable. Trust us on this one.
We will get to more focused, specific workouts after the holiday season—starting on January 10. Until then, don’t lose focus! Keep yourself fit through the holidays!
(Disclosure: This writer finished dead last at Lavaman in 2010 using a $100 mountain bike from Walmart. It was his first official triathlon race since the mid-1990s, and he went on to compete in multiple Ironman events by 2012. After breaking his ankle, he is starting his comeback in 2016 with Lavaman once again. Meet him there if you want!)