Beginning tri training, week 11: more than halfway there!

Credit: Mike Powell/Allsport
You're more than halfway to the goal. You could certainly do a triathlon right now. In fact, you'd probably be fitter right now than plenty of people who're going to be doing the race with you. Isn't it a great feeling to be getting fit?


OK, but look, you've missed workouts. You've done this schedule at perhaps a 90 percent level, or a 65 percent level, which is to say, you've skipped anywhere from 10 percent to a third of the workouts I've given you. Not to worry. I planned on that. Perhaps work has reintroduced itself as an attention-getter: "Remember me?! I'm work. I'm the thing that pays the bills. You realize that you and your triathlon habit exist at my good pleasure, right?!"

This is, of course, the voice of the devil. Pay it no mind. You don't live to work, you work to live. Whether you've done 40 percent, 60 percent, or 100 percent of the workouts below isn't of interest to me. What is of interest is that you find a stasis point, where work, family, workouts, all get fitted into a schedule that you can keep.

In reality, this workout schedule is designed so that if you complete two-thirds to three-fourths of the workouts I give you, you'll do just fine in the triathlon.

The idea is not to pick out the 75 percent of this schedule you want to do, but to try to do it all, realizing that you occasionally will get sick, or have work impinge on your personal time, or you'll have a family obligation, or get sick for a period of time. When that happens, all is not lost. It's part of life. It's part of the plan (not the Grand Eternal Plan, just my workout plan).

Your mission this week is to think about how all these workouts fit into your life. Is this a schedule you can maintain? Not just until the race, but a schedule you can keep ad infinitum. You may have to sacrifice something. You might not be able to be a triathlete and a dirt-bike rider, and a waterskier, and a trapeze artist, all at the same time. Don't get me wrong, if you can, that's fine. But flying on the trapeze is optional. Painting the house, vacuuming the floor, taking the dog for a walk and the daughter to ballet -- and the wife (or husband) to dinner and a movie -- are not optional. And sleep is not optional. And, hard as it is for me to admit it, work is not optional (but overwork is optional).


You'll find one change in this week's workouts vs. those of previous weeks. You've got a longer ride on the schedule. Why go 50 or 60 miles when the race is only 25 miles? Because bike riding is fun!

  • Swimming: 3 or 4 sessions x 1000 - 3500 yards per session
  • Cycling: 1 or 2 sessions of 60 minutes each; 1 ride of 50 - 60 miles
  • Running: 2 or 3 sessions x 25-35 minutes per session; 1 x 75-80 minutes
  • Ready to catch the swim-bike-run bug? Check out our Give it a Tri section

    Find and register online for your first triathlon!

    Check out the full beginning tri-training guide

    Discuss This Article