A Week of Training
It’s been a while (at least a year) since I’ve done any proper training, but I have now done a whole week of training! I had eased back from races and such like in 2015 but then arthritis in my shoulder at the beginning of 2016 forced me to ease off completely. I was of course still fairly active in comparison to your average person, but I certainly wasn’t training. I thought that maybe I should start doing something a little more structured though just to keep me fit. So, a week into 2017 and I decided to write myself the beginnings of a training plan. I’m not training for anything in particular so I want it to be a fairly generic, fairly rounded training plan. As a triathlete it will of course be fairly ‘Swim, Bike and Run’ orientated but as I don’t have any particular events planned it won’t be aimed at specific distances or even have a particular aim in mind. General health and fitness notwithstanding. It’s good to see that the first week went well, with a sea of green on my training plan.
The grey session on Wednesday was a quick little windsurf session to make the most of the wind – Not training, just fun and extra to what was planned not a missed session.
A Week of Training
It’s relatively easy training at the moment without too much intensity. At just short of 10 hours and with a Training Stress Score (TSS) of 557 it was a fair amount of load. It’s not as bad as it sounds though as there is a complete day of rest on Saturday and the week is actually designed to allow for a bit of recovery too. I’ve noticed as I get older that I can’t just keep going day after day after day without a little bit more recovery time. So, I ease into things on Sunday. Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday then have a fairly high workload, but the second half of the week eases off a little with the rest day on Saturday. I’m also trying to include a few strength and conditioning style workouts rather than just the swim bike and run. There’s nothing crazy here even at the beginning of the week:
- Sunday sees me doing a short run and a swim in Machynlleth.
- There’s a hard Turbo Trainer Workout on Monday and then a short weight session in the afternoon.
- A run and some plyometrics on Tuesday and then some sort of cross-training – hopefully Surf Skiing if the conditions allow.
- An early morning swim on Wednesday and then an after work turbo trainer session.
- Thursday is easier than it looks as the swim is a technique session that is usually pretty easy, and the bike ride is a very relaxed social MTB ride.
- Friday is easy too with just a short run.
- Saturday is a rest day.
Getting it Done
The Wednesday afternoon turbo trainer session is always the hardest to get motivated for as it’s after a day at work and needs to be squeezed in before dinner. I therefore try to look at it as the last workout of a little block. This should motivate me to just do it so that I can tick it off. Monday’s are difficult too (which is why I’m sat here writing this rather than getting on with it), but I guess that’s Mondays for you.
I’m looking forward to adding in the surf ski sessions though – Yes, it seems as though Surf Skiing is becoming my latest ‘project’. I’m not too good at it yet and the kit I have is very old and cobbled together just so that it’ll float but it’s good fun which is how it should be. It should be pretty good cross-training too and I should see some improvements fairly quickly which is always good. Who knows I might have to enter some events later in the year.
Don’t worry, I don’t intend to keep up this much training week on week either. In the past I’ve always worked well with a 4 week schedule that consisted of a Low week, a Medium Week and a High Week followed by a Recovery week. This was based loosely on TSS. I don’t think I can quite cope with that these days though. I’m not getting any younger which means recovery is more important. I also have more external pressures and time constraints these days as I work more stringent hours. These things make me aware of the fact that it’s better to do slightly too little than it is to do too much. The latter will just see me failing to complete my plan and then giving up. The former should keep me fresh and raring to go. With that in mind I’ve decided to go for a three week schedule instead. This comprises of:
- A Medium Week (TSS c. 530-550)
- A High Week (TSS c. 540-570)
- A Recovery Week (TSS c. 340)
Obviously this will change as I get fitter and the way that the TSS is built into the plan will change too throughout the year. Hopefully such a plan will allow me to stick to it and actually make some progress. I’ve so far written a plan that takes me up until the end of March and is all pretty much Base level steady state work without too much intensity.
If I make it that far I shall do a Build period and then maybe start working towards something specific.
Working towards Something Specific
I guess now I need to give myself something specific to aim for. It’s all well and good having a training plan, but I’ll probably need an incentive. The incentive of turning the sessions green on my training plan probably won’t be enough. I do have a Tough Mudder to get ready for in May and then I’ll hopefully do the Cyclo-cross season again in Autumn but maybe I should look for some events to do this year. I don’t think I’m quite ready to step back into Triathlon properly though. If I do I’ll want to be winning races and there’s no chance of that!
I am getting a little ahead of myself now though – I have only managed to complete one week of training so far after all. Maybe just trying to stick to the plan should be my aim for now. That and not getting injured. I best stop blogging and get on the turbo trainer!