A couple weeks ago Lisa got a new bike. I decided I’d compare how I went about buying my bike, a used 2010 Cervelo P4 bought through Kijiji, to Lisa’s bike, a brand new Felt IA10 bought from D’Ornellas bike shop. I look for older bikes that are great value, while a proven bike from a reputable brand with support from an established local bike shop is the priority for Lisa.
I look back on the highlights, disappointments, and lessons learned from my rookie pro season. I raced a lot this year, 11 triathlons over 19 weeks. On the whole the season exceeded my expectations. I have a lot of work to do in the off season, and I’m looking forward to get down to it with my sights set on continuing to get faster in 2018.
The off-season is a great time to get back on top of a strength training routine. Strength training is a great way to fortify your body against injuries, cure muscle imbalances, and get stronger. It isn’t all about getting to the gym and lifting heavy weights. Although that can be an element of your plan, having an assessment done to identify specific areas of weaknesses and developing a plan to address those weaknesses is a great way to get stronger. A big part of my strength training program uses only bodyweight or a band, such as; clamshells, monster walk, squats, and single leg deadlifts.
In a follow up to last weeks video (Taking an off-season break) this week I talk about getting back into training after taking a break. I find it important to ease back into training, not jumping in head first to big volume, to minimize injury risk. But I do like including some intensity to start getting the heart rate up and speed going. Once I’m back to a normal training volume I’ll do a few blocks that are a little different to normal training. It could be a 5k run speed focus, a 1-minute bike power focus, or big swim volume. This allows me to work on weaknesses, spice up normal training, and have some fun.
I believe taking an off-season break away from triathlon is highly beneficial for athletes of all levels. In the past I’ve taken breaks of 7, 8 and 10 weeks (it doesn’t have to be that long). Sure, I lose some fitness, but when I get back at it I’m always motivated to get that fitness back, and I use that momentum to push beyond where I was last season. Taking time off shouldn’t be feared, it will let you reset, mentally and physically, for new races and goals.