December 15, 2017

Race Period

Ron Saetermoe

This is what it’s all been leading up to . . . your Race Period. This is when you give your training everything you’ve got. Your volume and intensity max during this period; and it is intense!

While “stuff happens” you really need to try to stay on task during this period. No slacking off now. You may be getting nervous about your race at this point and wondering if your training was adequate. If you’re a typical “A” type triathlon personality you’ll never feel like you’ve done everything you could have to prepare.

You must be very careful during this period NOT to over train, and to make sure you get plenty of rest on your recovery days. Too many athletes think that more is better and while you will be doing more volume you also need to get your rest or all of the hard work simply won’t take.

Go over the race on paper (or computer) and in your head. Review the website and any course maps, rules, directions, etc. Go to the race site in advance if you can and do the course.

I’m going to try to get a slot at IM St. George on May 1st so a bunch of us are going out to St. George to ride and run the course in March. This will give us an edge come race day.

You’ll either pull back on the resistance training or end it all together during this period – you’re probably totally ripped anyway by now! In addition, this phase includes the CRITICAL taper prior to your event.

The length of your taper will depend on the event you’re training for. Here’s what I like to do:

Sprint: 3 days
Olympic: 1 week
½ IM: 2 weeks
IM: 3 weeks

By now you should have your nutrition completely dialed in. Don’t change anything at this late date. Stay focused.

The key things about the Race Period are:

- Don’t miss workouts unless sick or injured
- Continue to increase your training volume and intensity
- Resistance (strength) training ends
- “Brick” workouts should be getting longer in distance
- Recovery is critical
- Taper

Here’s what the ideal Triathica year looks like:

Again, we feel that three, three-week cycles within each period is optimal for building fitness and recovery. The time to build strength, speed and endurance is upon you. Make the best of it!



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