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Beginner 70 3 Triathlon Training Plan for Weak Swimmers

Beginner 70 3 Triathlon Training Plan for Weak Swimmers

– Morning Trainiacs. I am finishing a four-hour Zwift ride. That’s not a flex, it’s real. And my brain is officially mush. So what better time to give advice on how to create a
triathlon training plan? This is specifically going to
be for beginner triathletes who are weak swimmers, doing
a half Ironman distance, could be 12 weeks, 16
weeks, 20 weeks, 24 weeks, however much time you’ve got,
we’re going to address it, and we’re going to address
the three biggest things that you’ve gotta get right
to be prepared for your race. Those three things being: getting your training schedule right, making sure that the swim
is not intimidating for you and does not ruin the rest of your race, and that you know what gear to buy without breaking the bank. I got five more minutes left. I’ll come back to you after
this one, my brain is situated. (upbeat music) Okay, so as you start getting
ready for new goals in 2020 a lot of people start thinking
about doing a longer distance or there are a lot of people that bucket list want to start off working their way towards a half Ironman. The big things that hold people back are, can I ever go that long? Spoiler alert, yes. Endurance is very easy to build and I’m gonna teach you how to do it here. Next, are you gonna be
able to do the swim? Yes, we’re gonna be able
to get you to the point that swimming is basically
like coordinated floating. And then next is, it’s
going to be too expensive. Well, I’m gonna tell you,
just a handful of items that you need to get you to the race with just what you need, so
that you don’t break the bank. And you can decide later if you’re ready to invest big dough. So let’s get those three
things figured out for ya. So the first thing that
you’ve gotta get right is the training. And the first thing that people wonder is, well, how much am I
going to need to train, is it going to be huge amounts of effort, time away from family,
work, friends, real life, things like that? Well, here’s a guide that
we have on One thing to really keep
in mind with this guide is that there are different
goals for everyone. In my case, my goal is
to get to Kona someday, make it to the World Championships. But in some cases, people’s
goals might be just to finish. So what we’ve created
here on is how many workouts you
need to do approximately based on your specific goals. So let’s look here at for a 70.3, doing just four to seven workouts a week, finishing becomes questionable. If you’re really fit coming into it, you have a sports background, sure, you can probably finish. Most people are in the
finish feeling strong. You just don’t wanna
have a bad experience. You wanna be confident
walking up to the start line of the race that you’ve
done what you need to do, and you’re confident in how
the day is going to unfold. So for that, you need to do
around eight to 10 workouts that are properly designed. Now, how do you design those workouts? What are those workouts? That’s where we have here
again on all of this is prompted when
people create their settings on their account, is if
you’re a swim-focused athlete, and you wanna get that
eight to 10 workouts in, let’s just say you are in
the nine workouts category. You wanna make sure that you get the right types of workouts in, and that the workouts
are on the right days because if you design
the week incorrectly, you might be leading yourself to injury, you might be underpreparing yourself, you might be overtraining yourself. You also might not be
focusing on the right things. So for an athlete who wants to focus on improving their swim,
what a week should look like is Monday, an easy recovery swim; Tuesday, an intense bike; Wednesday, this is the main run, this is a run that builds up
in duration longer and longer, and I’ll explain how. Thursday, a recovery
bike and a strength day; Friday, a technique swim,
kind of an easier swim; Saturday, main bike, this is the big bike that builds up longer and
longer, followed by a brick run, and then Sunday is the main swim. We wanna make sure that
you’re swimming enough to succeed in the swim. If you start off with a bad swim, you aren’t going to do well. And three swims per week
is kind of a starting point of starting to make progress in swimming. We also wanna space those swims out. So that’s why we have them
Sunday, Friday, and Monday. Spaces them out a little bit,
and it also allows us here to have a recovery swim
after a bigger weekend where you’re gonna be a little bit beat up from that big bike and the main brick run, so then we give you a day
here on Monday to recover. We also give you a day on Friday to just kinda prepare for the weekend because these two here are
very light intensive days. They’re not very destructive on the body. Finally, how long does
all this need to be? Well, the recovery swim, I would say could be as little as 30 to 40 minutes, the intense bike 30 to 40 minutes as long as it’s really
intense, this is a hit bike. The main run, you wanna
build up to the point that you get to a 25 kilometer run. Recovery bike can be as little
as 30 minutes, as much as 60. Strength, only about 30
minutes, that’s lots. Technique swim, again, only
about 30 to 40 minutes. The main bike, you wanna build your way up to about 120K bike. The main brick run only needs to be a max of about 30 minutes long. The main swim here needs to build up to about 75 minutes long. So those are some guidelines,
all of the exact workouts. We could talk for, well, I’ve written 7,000 of them and with algorithms and things on and gets delivered to you
because it’s quite intense, what the actual workouts
are in this video would be five days long, I think
it’s already fairly long. Next, let’s address the swimming. The test that I use is that if you can swim 400 meters
or yards continuously, without feeling out of
breath whatsoever at the end, and without taking a
break at any of the walls while you’re turning, then you’re ready to start doing workouts. If you’re not yet ready
to start doing workouts, your time is best going to
be spent working on develop comfort and basic
fundamentals in the water. And for that… I’d recommend a phenomenal book written by a really
good looking triathlete called “Triathlon Swimming Foundations.” You can get the paperback book at any Amazon all around the world. You can get an e-book and the audiobook at It’ll straighten out
all your swim problems, just take a look at the reviews, it works. And then once you’ve
developed that basic ability to be comfortable in the
water and have basic form, so that the rest of the
race isn’t suffering as a result of the swim
taking a lot out of you, you need to do a few things, make sure that you get into open water, four to six times in either the wetsuit or the swim skin that
you’re gonna be racing in, so that you can get
comfortable in the open water and your wetsuit and swim skin
can stretch out a little bit so you don’t get that (sighs) this is so tight kinda feeling. You also in the two months
leading up to the race, you wanna start doing
some deck ups in the pool so that your body gets
used to standing up, rerouting the blood flow really quickly. It’s the same principle
as doing a brick run, going from the bike to
the run really quickly. This is making sure that your heart rate doesn’t shoot through the
roof in transition one. Again, being detrimental
for the rest of the race. And then finally, you wanna swim with some people around you. So if you have a swim crew
that you can work with just getting used to
having people around you, so that it’s not terrifying
when you get in the water, that’s about all you need to do. Now, let’s talk about
the gear that you need. There are only really seven
pieces of critical gear that I think people need. And you can get all of this
for probably under $1,000 if you already have access to a bike. First thing that you
need to get is a wetsuit, I recommend buying a
very inexpensive wetsuit for your first race. There’s an Xterra one on
Amazon that costs $140. And I recommend doing this
because renting a wetsuit is probably about $100. And then even if you don’t end up continuing on with triathlon,
you can probably sell the Xterra wetsuit for
probably about $100, and you won’t be sitting
in somebody else’s pee, trust me, it’s there. Next, I recommend that you buy a pair of very basic mirrored goggles, and you can buy these for about $15. The reason I recommend mirrored goggles with basic kind of profile,
not these big things, is because you can wear
them very easily in the pool and that mirrored finish
is going to help you with reducing the glare on the water when you get into open water. So you can use it in open water, you can use it in the pool; cheaper. Next, I recommend that you buy yourself a pair of tri shorts, not cycling shorts. If you’re tight on money,
and you don’t wanna buy a pair of swim trunks and a triathlon kit just go with tri shorts
because the shammy in them is so minimal that you can
use them as swim trunks, you can also use it as biking shorts, and you can use it as running shorts. Cycling shorts, you can’t really swim it, too much diaper butt. Speedo or Jammers you can’t really bike in because there’s no shammy. But tri shorts with a
really minimal shammy can kinda serve all purposes. The reverse goes for a cycling top, I recommend getting a cycling
top instead of a tri top. And why I recommend this, is because you can cycle in a cycling top and you can race in a
triathlon in a cycling top that’s fitted tightly to you, but a tri top is really
best just for triathlon when you don’t really necessarily wanna do all of your training in a tri top because all of the shoulders are exposed and it’s just not as practical. The pockets aren’t big enough, you can get shoulder sunburns if you are translucent like me. Just a more versatile option. Next, use whatever bike and
whatever helmet you have, literally whatever bike and
whatever helmet you have, don’t go and feel like you’ve gotta spend thousands of dollars if
that’s an issue to you. What I do recommend getting
is a pair of clip-on aerobars. About 80 to 85% of the
drag that you have to push through the air is created by your body, and if you can just get a
$20 pair of clip-on aerobars and get comfortable in
that tucked in position, you’re gonna be way more aerodynamic than even if you had a
fancy $3,000 road bike with no clip-on aerobars,
but you were up on the hoods. That is kinda counterintuitive. And then finally, a decent
pair of running shoes. And this is a decent
pair of running shoes, something that is meant for running, something that you
didn’t buy for like $20. We’re talking shoes that cost about $100, there abouts and up, because this is gonna
have the most cushioning. And as you’re getting used
to running more frequently, you wanna have shoes that
are designed properly for running to help avoid injuries, ’cause that’s what’s going
to get you to the race and reach those goals that we laid out. Now, you’re still probably wondering how do I actually design a training plan? Not really ready for a coach, well, couple of options, number one, you can go to, and you put in the distance
of the race that you wanna do, how many workouts a
week that you want to do and when the race is, and it’ll give you kind of a skeleton of a week and a build. So you can use that, it doesn’t
have any workout details, because we save that for the
next option, that’s our online training program, where for just 57 bucks a month you get every single workout, you get audio files guiding you with how to do these workouts so you start understanding
what all the lingo means. You get free stuff from
all of our sponsors. You can get one-on-one consultations from professional triathlon coaches and professional triathletes
for like a fraction of if you had hired an
actual triathlon coach, and you get to be with
one of the biggest coolest triathlon clubs in the world. We are in between about
500 and 1,000 members, and they’re all really solid people, and we’ve got a social media component so that you can all help
each other out with questions or just motivate each
other as races come up and training gets hard. And of course, check out
“Triathlon Swimming Foundations” on all the Amazons across the world or if you’re more into
e-books and audiobooks That’s a whole lotta calls
to action for one video. I think that’s a long video. Hopefully, this helped a
fair bit; very excited. If you’re watching this,
that means that you are probably thinking about
doing one of your first half Ironman’s this year. I think it’s fantastic distance, just long enough to be really challenging but just short enough to be
really practical for real life. So good on ya, keep me
posted on how it goes. Later Trainiacs.

14 comments on “Beginner 70 3 Triathlon Training Plan for Weak Swimmers

  1. Thanks for giving so much to the sport and being so inclusive regardless background or experience. Your earned your spot Taren!

  2. Will this be part of a series for beginner 70.3 triathletes who are weak on biking and then running? I feel like my weakness changes depending on what today's workout is.

  3. Interesting to see dedicated swims for technique and recovery instead of just 3 "regular" swims, will definitely implement that into my training!

  4. You should do a video on small upgrades after getting basic kit. Stuff like a magnetic race belt, compression sleeves and socks, speed laces, cheap aero helmet, speed and cadence sensor, basic bike computer, etc.

  5. One thing that non-swimmers need to focus on to improve body position is ankle flexibility. (Dorsiflexion and plantar flexion) This allows the ankle to snap at the end of the kicking motion. You can kick as hard as you want but if you don’t have that snap at the end of the kick, you are wasting energy and just pulling your legs through the water. Most runners and non-swimmers have rigid ankles. Rigid ankles contribute to ineffective/non-propulsive kick.

  6. Thank you so much Taren! I am doing Galveston 70.3 April 5th. I am confident in every aspect except swimming and have been kinda worrying. You're my hero, keep it up!

  7. Taren – this is a great video. This is the 'old school Taren' video. NO commercial aspect and just down to earth Tri advice and inspiration to get new athletes (like me) in to the sport. Perfect timing for me as I am aimless right now on a training plan, can't swim and goal is a half IM.
    Great video… nice to see and thank you.

  8. Like the advice. I would recommend a road bike (any road bike that fits) for the 56 miles of a 70.3 bike. A MTB or Fat Bike would be a bit rough. A hybrid might work in a pinch.

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