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Triathlon Run Training

January 29, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 219

Winter run training, heart monitor training, benefits of running, and other running tips.

There are many triathlon run training tips that may help you with your first Triathlon or first Ironman.


The triathlon run training portion of preparing for your first Ironman should be approached with caution.

This is one area where you stand a good chance of being injured if you do too much too soon. If you are an accomplished runner with a few marathons under your belt, than most of this page isn't meant for you.

I would assume that you would have more of a handle on triathlon run training than someone new to the activity. I'm more concerned with those of you who don't really have a running background but still want your shot at the Ironman triathlon.

Be realistic about your Ironman marathon. When it comes to your triathlon run training, especially for an Ironman 70.3 or Ironman, you will have to travel 13.1 or 26.2 miles on foot. Notice I said "travel" and not "run."

I imagine the list of first timers who have run the entire Ironman marathon distance from start to finish is very small. A realistic goal for your first Ironman marathon should be to run more than you walk.

Regardless of how many bike-run bricks you do in training, it is always a challenge to get off a bike and begin running after covering 112 miles preceded my a 2.4 mile swim on Ironman day.


This happens every single endurance race to many of the participants in marathons and Ironman Triathlons and I'm sure it will continue to happen in every event in the future.

For some people it seems like it happens over and over again. Well sure it does. They never change their approach to the race, so why expect the results to change for the better?

It takes some people years and many excruciating death marches in marathons and Ironman marathons before they finally figured out that if they wanted different results they had to have a better plan leading up to the race.


It's important to be prepared for how the Ironman marathon will most likely unfold if you are new to the event. This can be done by making the most of your triathlon run training so it will benefit you as much as possible on race day.

Don't think you have to go out and run 100 miles a week in your run-training to get ready for the Ironman. Don't even think you have to do a 20 mile run. It really isn't necessary.

Think in terms of "time on your feet" and not distance traveled during your marathon run training.

This is just as important in marathon running not related to an Ironman.


Just by its very nature, a heart monitor will not let you run too fast too soon.

Heart-monitors will also help you stay injury-free. It will make your marathon run training more enjoyable and you will not get discouraged, especially when you can actually see your improvement as the months pass.

Reminder: When you use a heart monitor and train at or just below your pre-determined target, set a maximum of 90 minutes for those workouts. The "most" I ever did was 2 hours.

What happens is----once you start getting into really good running shape----you start running quite a bit faster. So 90 minutes at a quick pace is enough.(Actually its 60 minutes).

The work-out would be 15 minutes very slow to warm-up. 60 minutes at or just below your target heart rate. Then a 15 minute very slow cool-down.

If you do longer runs, make them well below your target (20-25 beats)for the entire run. It will tend to creep up, but control it as best you can.

There is much to learn about heart-rate monitor training but it's well worth it.


Sometime before your Ironman race, when you have trained yourself into really good running shape, try an extended outing.

This is an important part of your Ironman marathon run training. Make sure its a good 8 weeks or so before the big day. Try and convince someone to come along with you on their mountain bike. That way they can carry extra water for you.

If you plan this extra-long run for a Sunday, make Saturday your rest day and plan for just the run on Sunday.It would be a good idea to try and make that run somewhere between three and four hours long.

Never under-estimate the value of "resting smart" when preparing for longer runs.

There are those who feel that a maximum of two hours is the longest you really have to run when preparing for an Ironman. Perhaps this might be true for most of the training season, but it would be of great benefit to do at least one very long run.

At least putting some "over-distance" training into Ironman preparations will be a big help when race day arrives.

It's much the same principle as trying to get in at least one very long bike ride at some point before your race taper begins. It's more a matter of getting used to being in the bike saddle for a long length of time then it is to increase your fitness level.

So just think of that very long run workout as a way of getting used to being on your feet for four hours or more when you are out on the run course when race-day arrives.

Most first-time Ironmen are on the marathon course somewhere between 4 and a half and 6 hours. What you want to do is try and do your long marathon training run just like you will most likely do your Ironman run.

In other words, don't bother trying to run the whole thing. Run without stopping for the first 90 minutes. This will start to make you a bit tired.

From there run 10-12 minutes and then walk 2 minutes. Keep doing that until your 3 and half to 4 hour run is finished. If you could work 2 or 3 of these into your training that would be great, but do at least one for sure.

What you have done is emulate what it will be like to run between the aid stations. "Walk through" the aid station taking whatever nourishment you need.

If you plan and train for this, then you won't be disappointed if you go out expecting to blast your way through the entire marathon course.

It just won't happen. Learning how to incorporate a brisk walk or "power walking" in your triathlon run training will make your run workouts less demanding on your body and will give you a workable plan to take into your event.

By having a plan, you will have a ball-park time of how long it will take you to cover 26 miles. This is really important because you have to BE AWARE OF THE TIME REMAINING!!! before the race cut-off. Don't leave too much to do for the last 5 miles.

You want to be like a glass of water that empties drop by drop with the last drop falling out at the finish line.

You don't want the glass three quarters empty at the 13 mile mark. Proper triathlon run training and preparation will help you achieve this.

Then there will be those days when there is just not much time. If you only have an hour to devote to running in the morning for example, you can pretty well roll out of bed and be running just minutes later without having to worry about dressing for the weather.

For some people it can be difficult to find great places to run. regardless if you plan to take on the Ironman Triathlon, a ten kilometer race, or a marathon it's always a struggle to go outside and train.

However you can always get yourself a treadmill and park it somewhere in your house(perhaps in front of the T.V.) and start training for the big race.


If for some reason you are unable to get in all the necessary training for your athletic goals because where you happen to live is not that bike or runner friendly or because you have to make the most of the time you have available for training, then don't feel you have to forget your athletic goals and dreams.

There is always a way to get it done.

I'm living proof that it's possible, as one year I did over 90% of my bike training on a wind-trainer in my living room in front of the T.V. This is exactly how I trained for almost one entire year.

If car and truck traffic are taking over all your favorite running and cycling routes you will do just fine in the Ironman and most likely your bike time will be pretty much the same as all those times you road your bike hundreds of miles outside.


It's important to plan a running schedule that allows for proper rest.

It's also important to come up with a running training schedule that works for you and your life circumstances.

It might involve running early in the morning before work, during your lunch break, or in the evening after dinner. Different plans work for different people, but there is always a way to get it done whether you are training for a marathon or an Ironman.


For a completely new way to look at running and perhaps suffer less injuries, you might want to have a look at the pose running technique.

This is the same method of short-stride running that Michael Johnson used to win gold medal after gold medal in the Olympic Games.

It might not be for everyone and it does take getting used to but it's certainly worth taking a look at.

Pose running might just be the perfect technique for some people.


Many people have cut short their running careers because they have experienced running knee pain. Often this is simply an over-training problem that can be easily remedied by cutting back and giving your knee a rest.

It can also be a problem that might be remedied by the use of an insert in the running shoe.

Regardless, running knee pain does not have to mean the end of running for you and all avenues should be considered before giving up on running altogether.


Proper running form is important in order to save energy and prevent injury. Some runners tend to over-stride and this can often lead to problems.

There are others who are not quite sure what to do with their arms when they run and this is also important when it comes to maintaining the most efficient running form.

Proper running form is important and should not be over-looked.


Whatever you are running for fitness or running to train for a race there is no doubting the many benefits of running. The fresh air is great and running will help maintain your optimum body weight if you embrace running as a lifestyle and something you do regularly.

Often people who take up running end up taking it to the next level eventually and begin to enter some shorter running events.

It's a great way to get out there and meet new people. There is no doubting the benefits of running.

My name is Ray and I've been an endurance athlete for over 30 years. I've competed in over 30 marathons, 2 - 50 mile races, 14 Ironman triathlons and countless shorter races.

I've created a website called "Ironstruck". My website provides training and racing tips for the beginner triathlete and novice Ironman. Visit my new site at and join our community.

I have also written 3 triathlon books. Two are for those who have an Ironman triathlon in their future. "IronStruck... The Ironman Triathlon Journey" and " IronStruck? 500 Ironman Triathlon Questions and Answers" have been very well received by the triathlon community.

My latest book " Triathlete In Transition" is for the very beginner triathlete and first time Ironman is also being well received.

If you enjoy my articles on Ezine, then VISIT My Ironstruck bookstore and have a look at the books that can guide you and inspire you as you begin your own triathlon journey. Good luck on becoming an Ironman!

Source: EzineArticles
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