Tackle your first Olympic tri with this 21-week training schedule

Dan Empfield, founder of Quintana Roo and publisher of triathlon Web site Slowtwitch.com, has put together a 21-week training guide to help first-time triathletes get ready for an Olympic-distance race. More than a list of workouts, this narrative guide also offers insights into the psyche behind the sport.

Dive in:

Week 1: Take it slow; you'll be hooked soon enough

Week 2: Get ready to swim

Week 3: Add swims to your runs

Week 4: Get set for cycling

Week 5: Time and energy management

Week 6: Balancing your workouts

Week 7: Adding longer sessions

Week 8: Make your goal concrete

Week 9: Toss some exploration into your training

Week 10: Be good to your heart

Week 11: More than halfway there!

Week 12: Relationship dynamics and new triathletes

Week 13: Focus on nutrition

Week 14: Introducing the "brick"

Week 15: Things to know about wetsuits

Week 16: Build on your runs

Week 17: Get in the swim of things

Week 18: Go big on the bike

Week 19: 'hitting the taper' right

Week 20: One (or two) weeks left to race day!

Week 21: You've done the work, now go race! (and have fun)

Give it a tri! Check out our beginners triathlon section

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