Triathlon strength training should not be overlooked by the training triathlete. It’s important that you have powerful muscles on the day of the big race.
Triathlon Weight Training
Triathletes often make the mistake of neglecting the weight training aspect of their sport. Triathlons don’t involve any activities that directly require great strength.
There’s no kicking, no body checking, no trying to knock the cover off a ball, no power lifting, and not even any vertical leaping. Many believe that weight training will bulk them up, thus slowing them down by adding extra weight.
Triathletes need more strength than just what the specific skill set in a triathlon will give them.
Triathlon strength training is about more than just making yourself able to “grip” the water more during your swim, push the pedals to the max during heartbreaking uphill climbs, and being able to give a great kick at the end of the arduous distance run. You need to add some weights into your triathlon workouts!
Weight Training for Triathletes – Injury Prevention
Your strength training is just as much about preventing injury. You are less prone to injury, your muscles are leaner so that you gain power without putting on unwanted (fat-based) weight, and you actually are helping your metabolism to increase so you gain speed and endurance, not lose them.
For the triathlete, it is indeed important to strike that perfect balance between size and strength, and speed, leanness, and agility. So the question becomes: what’s the optimal way for a triathlete to approach weight training?
It’s usually best for the triathlete to make use of body weight resistance exercises. Some machine use and some free weights can used to supplement body weight exercises. Body weight resistance training results in lean, strong muscles with explosive power. The types of exercises that comprise this type of weight training also can help the triathlete build endurance, because they involve plyometrics and many repetitions.
The Best Triathlon strength training Exercises
The best body weight resistance weight exercises for the triathlete are pull-ups, push-ups, dips, and lunges.
All of these should be done for 16 to 32 reps at a time.
In addition to this, squats are the best universal weight training exercise there is. Squats will build up strong legs, back and the ‘core’ stomach muscles.
You should focus on is “core strength” training. Core strength training will improve your swimming power, your uphill climb and sprint cycling speed, and your resistance to injury while running all at once.
Have you ever seen a triathlete in the final stages of the cycle leg of the race up in their upright handlebars rather than down on their tri bars in the aerodynamic tri pose? This is down to a lack of core strength.
Start planning your triathlon strength training plan today!