The headline actually already reveals everything that is going on today. But I would like to narrow the topic down a bit. Anyone who has followed my blog knows that I am close to my goal, the Sandman Triathlon in Swakopmund. That said, I want to tell you a few things about the last two weeks before the competition.
The big secret of the last two weeks
Here's the big secret: In the last two weeks before our competition, we can't really get anything big. That means either we've already done our homework or it's just too late. But in the last two weeks, if we train the wrong things now, we can undo everything we've been training for. In short, these two weeks are about two things. First of all, we want to recover well so that we are fit at the start on the day of the competition. Secondly, we want to build up the necessary tension for the competition so that we don't go out on the track slackly and without the necessary bite.
The Biggest Mistakes
Again and again I see athletes who really give their bodies a beating just before the competition. For example, you don't have to run long runs or intervals (not to be confused with building tension) in the week leading up to the main event. In short, the training is too close to the competition. There is no recovery and we train too much and too fast. As always, according to the motto: A lot helps a lot. And as we already know, that's just bullshit.
Here's how it works: Rest first
As described in the last blog, training is about setting stimuli or stress and allowing the necessary recovery time to follow. Up to two weeks before the competition, I used exactly this load with an intensive cycle. That means my most physically demanding block, which I trained in the entire preparation, was between 2 and 4 weeks before the Sandman Triathlon. In other words, here I gave myself the edge again and trained for (relatively) long units at my target intensity. You can see what that looks like in my training plan . This phase is followed by a well-deserved rest. So, for a week, "put your feet up". The intensity and volumes are significantly reduced so that the body can recover well from previous stress.
Then, when all the essentials have been trained and then recovered, we need to build tension without over-tiring again. This can be done by completing short units (maximum 1.5 hours) in the week before the competition, which always contain small peak loads (up to the target intensity). The number and duration of peak loads is then reduced every day. Two days before the competition I recommend a complete rest day. Here you can put your feet up in the truest sense of the word and the day before you will move again for 45 minutes and "tickle" the target intensity once. And that was it. Now I'm ready to compete.
How do I know all this?
Since I've been doing sports, training planning and control has been my passion. To paraphrase Hannibal Smith of the A-Team, "I love it when a plan works." That's why I went through various training courses as a trainer, sports scientist and trainer. I've been training athletes since I was 18 and have taught many of these athletes how to swim , triathlon, or run. I have always written my own training plans. That's why I've always put all the units that I recommend to others through their paces on myself.
You want to know more about me? Then become my friend on Facebook: Ralph on Facebook
Photo: Ingo Kutsche, triathlon.de, Fotolia