First Week of Off Season In the Books and Looking Ahead

As I have done all season, I intend to continue to build on the good habits that resulted in the successful conclusion of my first triathlon season, namely setting goals.  I understand the off season is a time to reflect and let go of all the workouts that drove me through my races.  But its also a time to focus on non-specific workouts that get abandoned as a full training schedule takes over.  Numerous sources stated an off season should be unscheduled workouts.  I have instead defined my own idea of an off season based on specific goals I want to accomplish in the next two months.  I have specifically targeted my focus and made sure to keep it lighter than my expected workout load when I start ramping up again for triathlon season.

Off Season Goals:

  1. Run a half marathon/ Focus on the run – I feel the run is my weakest area in regards to the three sports.  During my race season I do not push the run too much and focus more on increasing distance without hurting my race success.  There are so many ways to injure oneself when running that I truly only feel comfortable pushing the run in the off season.  My core focus lies in preparing for my half marathon at the end of November by running at least one long run a week.   Besides this I am returning to the treadmill to get some structured interval training and tempo work to help push me passed my comfort levels.
  2. Weight lifting – During race season this gets placed on the back burner and one session of Aquafit a week is used to maintain muscle fitness.  As I have a reduced multi-sport focus right now my goal is to lift low weight, high reps for a month and then transition into more normal weight lifting repetitions.
  3. Plan 2014 races and get them approved by the budget committee (wife).
  4. Continue to keep preparing for swim and bike by getting at least one high intensity workout a week.
  5. Have fun not worrying about training for swimming and biking and running.  Focus on running and weights above all else and be sure to give the wife some time to build up points for when training season starts.

That is my plan for the next two months.  As I said allot of running and weights, not too much else.  When I do swim or bike I want to focus on drills and technique before worrying about distance and endurance, those will come later.  So how did my first week of off-season training go?

  1. Did two workout sets with 30 reps for five sets.  Workout was taken right out of pages of the Friel Triathlon Training Bible.
  2. Got my swim and spin sessions in, both focusing on technique specific workouts.
  3. Pilates is back on the table and it feels good to get the core some proper work.
  4. Completed a good tempo run on Tuesday and a very difficult interval session on thursday.  Sunday I was slated for 8 mile running but due to technical issues had to cut the distance short at 5 miles instead.

Week 1 numbers. Funny that this total for the longest time was my max exertion total at the start of this year.

Looking Ahead to This Week:

  • Continue working on pacing and interval work on the treadmill, but try to reduce stress toward end of the week as there are races this weekend.
  • Get ready to run a race Saturday morning at 7AM and then later Saturday/Sunday morning at 1AM.  Both are 5ks, but I have never ran two races this close together.
  • Monday is spin day.
  • 3 Workouts unless I feel like my running would go better this weekend without the Friday session.  Will need to play this by ear.
  • Swimming workout this week will be a 1500 meter ladder and some other drills.
  • Start to think about next year.
My Saturday morning run.

My Saturday morning run.


My Saturday/Sunday evening/morning run.

My Saturday/Sunday evening/morning run.

A good conclusion to my first transition week from recovery and racing into the off season.  Allot of this is new to me, but it feels right and makes sense.  I think this change from three sport workouts to weight and running primarily will give me a good break for when I return to triathlon specific training in the new year.  For now I am having fun being a runner and lifting weights.   Til next time.

Any off season specific advice for a new triathlete?



  1. “3.Plan 2014 races and get them approved by the budget committee (wife).” This made me smile!
    Good luck with them two 5k’s. There a bit early in the morning aren’t they?!

    1. 7-8 Am Saturday morning is pretty standard for runs in the states. The 1 AM Saturday/Sunday run is a very unusual time, but the run is set at the same time as daylight savings time in the states where we turn the clock back. The idea here is that you have a negative time as you finish before your start time. Its allot of fun with food and a very large party atmosphere. I have a couple of running associates that will be doing both as well.

      1. Oh wow, that’s pretty cool. Hope it goes well, I’m sure it will 🙂

        1. Its a very low pressure race and should be fun. I did it as my second 5k last year and had a blast. Thanks.

  2. Don’t lose what you worked so hard for all season long. Keep plugging away brother.

    1. I don’t plan on it!! No way I am going back to where I was or anywhere close.

      1. I can’t tell you how proud of and how happy I am for you.

        That’s the attitude you need.

        1. Thank you my friend.

  3. kruzmeister · · Reply

    Nice plan Chatter, I also chuckled at the budget committee comment! May I suggest you through some long swim and bike workouts in there on occasion too, just so you don’t lose all your endurance base and have to spend time building it back up again. Enjoy training for fun mate! 🙂

    1. I am working to maintain but have some down time as well. Thanks for the encouragement.

  4. Your plan is good advice for all of us. Have a plan to address areas you need to work on, do some different things and try to have some fun and not be totally consumed with getting all of your workouts in.
    I have started looking at 2014 races also. So far I have a spread sheet with lots of races and need to start weeding them out. It is exciting to think about next year. I have two weddings to plan around. I may be able to use them to run in a far off race or may have to miss a good race to be there for someone’s special day.

    1. I am finding it really difficult to adapt to the off season. I get so regimented while training,its hard letting go a bit. I am starting my 2014 prep now, just need to get through the running plan for November.

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