Body Cycles For Triathlons and Triathletes - Taper Every Fourth Week
Wake up, men! You also have a cycle, which, if correctly manipulated, means both sexes can train, absorb and progress better with forward planning.
It's not stargazing but a simple formula for effective adaptation, putting recovery right up there with training.
Building and recovering Even though you train regularly every week, it may not necessarily mean that you are building ever- longer sessions.
However, the day-to-day training can build up to a level of overload until you recover.
This will not happen if you just take a day off- recovery may actually take many days, especially if your training has been to a new level.
If over-reaching, i.
training without recovery, persists, you will get tired and most likely injured.
At the very least, you will go stale.
So the simple but effective formula is three weeks training, then one week recovery.
That makes a month, so you can work with your body cycles or, at least, impose one.
Work backwards Smart people will work back from their goal event: at the end of the fourth (taper) week of a cycle.
This allows you to train by imposing which weeks you will feel good and ensuring from the very start of your triathlon training that the fourth week of recovery is as important as the three training weeks.
Note that when you are training for half or Full Ironman events, a two to three week taper is usually used.
Every training programme is stress plus recovery, and the classic three-week build and one-week recovery may not work for everyone.
It may be sooner than three weeks in older athletes or those who are less resilient and always seem to break down physically.
If this is the case, a two-week build and one-week recovery scenario may be worth a try.
It may not fit into the perfect monthly cycle, but few things are ever perfect in life.
If you work shifts, have regular trips away or times every month when your work is manic, a pattern may be imposed on you.
The key is to use the times when you know that training is less likely for recovery and not to fight whatever is in your way.
Top Tip If you are irritable or feel tired during training sessions and the fun of training has become a compulsion, it's time to have some easy days or maybe two back-to- back no-training days.
Rest or recovery will normally do the trick.