Choosing a training plan

This week was a bit rocky for working out. Between the city being shut down for two days for icy weather, Mo getting sick, the Nyx Ball, and next week being the first week of New Orleans Triathlon training, I threw my hands in the air and rolled with it.

My main priorities were staying healthy enough to go to the ball Saturday night and start my new training plan Tuesday. I ended skipping working out Thursday as I was feeling congested and in general yucky. Saturday morning I just swam. I actually did the Time Crunched Triathlete fitness test and saw some huge gains from last summer when I took it the first time. The first time I took it, I swam in the 50 meter pool. I finished my 400 in 11:25 and my 100 in 2:31. This time I swam in the outdoor 25 yard pool. I finished my 400 in 8:32 and my 100 in 1:48! I have seen so many gains in my swimming over the last year working with Coach C and swimming consistently. It’s nice to see it quantified.


grumpy pre swim selfie, complete with bedhead

I carry Time Crunched Triathlete around the house like its a stinkin novel. To the bedroom, the bathroom, the kitchen counter, the couch. It’s dog-eared and bookmarked and scribbled in. I like to pour over a training plan weeks in advance and feel like I understand what it is building to. I’ll plan our week’s meals and activities around this schedule.

So in choosing between the intermediate and advanced Olympic distance plans, I had to take into consideration my racing needs. March 30 is the New Orleans Triathlon, April 4-6 is the Gulf Coast Interstate Relay (running) and April 13th is the New Orleans Half Ironman Relay (swim leg for me).

Not to say I’m advanced. At all. I couldn’t always push myself to do all of the intervals in the intermediate plan when I was training for Big Cajun. But both the intermediate and advanced plans had pros and cons.

well hello dear friend

well hello dear friend

Intermediate Plan Pros:

  • Four days a week
  • Familiar
  • This time I might be able to hit all the intervals

Intermediate Plan Cons:

  • Those long, long Saturday rides. So many 2, 2.5, and even a 3 hour rides
  • Not a lot of focus on running, which of the three, is my strength, which could pose a problem for GCIR
  • Barely enough swimming to be trained for the HIM NOLA swim leg

Advanced Plan Pros:

  • More running, around 2.5 hours, with more longish runs built in
  • Fewer long rides (most long rides are 90 min, with only one 2 hour ride)
  • Higher yardage swim workouts
  • Since there are five workouts a week, some of them are shorter, so less time per day potentially

Advanced Plan Cons: 

  • Five day a week plan and I really like that extra rest day in the intermediate plan
  • Can I even hit all the intervals? And isn’t the point in the Time Crunched Plan to be doing interval training?
  • I’d argue cycling is my weakest sport and there is less emphasis on cycling

In the end, I’ve decided that despite the cons in the Advanced Plan, it’s a better fit for my overall goal of competing in these back to back to back races.

So this week starts the new training plan and continuing the next stage of New Rules of Lifting for Women. Now, training through Mardi Gras is a whole other challenge.


and to think, these lovely tan lines were just starting to fade…

Do you use a coach or do you make your own training plan?

Do you plan your workouts out for the week?

Any recommendations for a better sunscreen than the one I’ve been using?

About sweatingforit

Sweating for my sanity in South Louisiana

Posted on February 2, 2014, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. Laura: I bought that book and never got into reading it! I admire you SO much for analyzing what all of that means and making your own workouts! I am SO glad your swimming has improved, too! I take the LAZY approach and just tell Coach Rick what my goals are and let him tell me what to do. Maybe I should actually LISTEN to him when he tells me how to race?

    • Eve, I love the book, but I wouldn’t have known about it if I hadn’t heard you talking about it on one of those speedwork mornings! And you push me to try further and harder events!

  2. I’ve just started reading through Time Crunched Triathlete… hoping it works out for me as well as it seems to have worked out for you!

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