Train Smarter for a Triathlon

Track Your Training:
This method seems obvious but many individuals neglect documenting their training. If you are very limited on time it is best to hire a coach. However, you can track your own training via pen and paper or the countless training websites available for free which offer quick and easy methods to accomplish this tedious and boring task. However, it will pay dividends in the long run.

Nutrition:
Reduce the consumption of simple carbohydrates and increase the consumption of complex carbohydrates. Eat fruit and vegetables rather than pasta and rice. Eat fish 3-4 times per week and red meat 1-2 times per week. Reduce portion sizes and avoid excessive alcohol consumption or soda consumption. It is really that simple. If you are a dessert person eat fruit after dinner rather than cheesecake. This comes down to making a choice at the critical moment. It helps to stop and pause for a second when someone asks you if you would like something you know you don’t really need. Have alternatives set up before someone asks you and counter their request for dessert/alcohol/extra helpings of food with a request for fruit or water.

Setting Goals:
Sit down and write your “Fitness Dream”, annual goals, 3-month goals, weekly goals, and daily goals out on paper. Again, a coach helps a lot in this area as we sometimes need help to distill out what it is we want to accomplish without the help of a second party who is not biased. Using a spouse often doesn’t work as they have their own agenda albeit their heart is in the right place. In order to stop and pause for your next piece of cheesecake you need to have a good reason to do so. Determining your “Fitness Dream” and your 3-month goals will help motivate you to make the right choice and complete that workout scheduled for Friday afternoon. Remember, your “Fitness Dream” must be one that makes your hair stand on end. Again, an objective coach can help you identify your “Fitness Dream”.

Communicate With Family:
If you are married, in a relationship, and/or have children it is important to involve them in your training plans. I actually go as far as to recommend that you schedule time with your family and significant others just as you schedule workouts. A happy triathlete is a successful triathlete and having the support of your family is critical to your success just as much as proper diet and training are. If you find that you are having difficulty juggling training, family, and work it might be time to re-adjust your goals. You can most often continue to compete in triathlon with very limited time to train if you are willing to sit down and objectively look at your current situation, set realistic goals, train appropriately, and adhere to simple nutritional guidelines.