New Years Resolutions Tips for Ironman and Triathlon athletes
Fears and aspirations for the coming year. Now is the time to plan and write down for ambitions. Important A B C races. Choose 1-3 main events and B and C races as stepping-stones. Write down what was good and not so good about last year.
If you kept a diary look back and try and see what helped and what didn't. How long did certain speed work or long sessions help?
Hopefully you did not eat too much over Christmas, if you did start doing something today rather than concerning yourself with the extra weight you have put on. In the next 7 days reducing your calories intake by 500 calories a day will mean you will already be 1lb lighter, don’t delay start today.
In January aim to increase your distances by no more than 10 per cent. Still work on economy of effort adding a little tempo once a week sub race pace for about 10 percent of one weekly bike and run.
Spend more time on your weakness be it swimming cycling running strength or core stability.
Are you able to keep going but lack strength or an athlete who is strong but lacks endurance?
Need strength then swim with hand paddles bike on hilly courses and run off road up and down hills to build up strength.
Lack endurance do less sessions but longer easier periods at steady state intensity if using a heart rate monitor keep below 60 percent of maximum heart rate for at least 95% of your long sessions.
Resolutions- "I will go to the gym" or “ I will be faster” This goal often fails, have a time specific target deadline, ask yourself why you what you want to do it, what you hope to achieve.
To succeed you will sometimes need to try again and be more determine to achieve after an earlier failure. Tell others this will give you added commitment they could ask you.
Reward yourself with little treats for reaching short-term goals. Ask yourself what do I and can improve? Aim on every part of the big picture: -Consistent, Creative, Cross Train, Diet, Flexibility, Goal setting, Healthy, Injury, Illness, Train, Sprint finish, maintain fitness throughout the year, mental strength,
CONSISTANT- Aim to have a routine and train more regularly. Athletes that train consistently develop a much better base.
CREATIVE- if the weather is undesirable train indoors Swim, core, run or weight train.
CROSS Train- this helps give you total fitness and by adding variety like weight training or circuit training. Doing other types of exercise this helps keep you focused for longer. As the season approaches then consider more single sport specific training.
Diet- this can be improved for most people. Undoubtedly this will help you remain healthy, drop your guard during training and you risk becoming ill. Better nutrition aids health, sports performance and recovery. Staying healthy helps with more consistent training and the quicker you recover the sooner you can train for longer and higher intensities. Improve Diet- this can be drinking less alcohol not snacking on chocolate and sweets. Aim to eat more raw fruit and vegetables, improve recovery by eating a carbohydrate/protein drink with 30 minutes of finishing replacing depleted glycogen stores. If you do not buy biscuits and sweets you cannot eat them! Make a healthy shopping list in the order you go round the supermarket to save time and can help avoiding the buying the the wrong types of food.
FLEXIBILTY- Spend a small amount of time 3 times a week on improving flexibility. Tight muscles are more likely to change your form and can result in getting injured.
GOAL SETTING- Make these realistic and broken into smaller easier achievable short-term aims.
HEALTHY- Replace carbohydrate and stay hydrated. Wash your hands regularly and avoid touching your mouth and nose. You risk transferring infection from your hands.
INJURY and ILLNESS- make this your healthiest year. Back off when you feel you may be coming down with a cold or slight pain from a niggle injury. Maintain fitness- keeping a training diary can help you stay motivated. Pencil in weekly plans to help you be progressive with your training. Employ a coach to gain vital feedback and help with all round fitness. Get more from your club, if you have not joined a club then find one that will help.
MENTAL strength- this is often neglected and can be improved. There is much information about this on the website or from books. Being confident to train and race harder and longer breeds confidence. Having strength to hold back in racing can often give you a better result because you went with the wrong pace and paid for it later. Train more when things are going well remind yourself and record the results in your training diary, and reward yourself with a treat or buy something you wanted. A positive frame of mind will improve a positive frame of mind for much longer.
TRAIN WITH OTHERS- plan to exercise with other like-minded individuals on a regular basis this helps you remain more consistent and you can then monitor your fitness levels often with others. If they are not as fast as you this can be your easy session if they are quicker this will also help. Either way you both improve in the long run. Improve Diet- this can be drinking less alcohol not snacking on chocolate and sweets. Eating more healthy vegetables and fruits.
WEIGHT- after getting close to your race weight aim to keep it constant.