How to make your winter training AWESOME

How to make your winter training AWESOME

Posted by on 3rd December 2019

As a coach I look forward to every winter as much as I look forward to the racing season. After helping athletes to achieve their goals, the onset of winter training marks a time to help them move on to the next level. To take on bigger goals and explore their limits.


There is a phrase, “if you always do what you’ve always done, you will always get what you’ve always had”. There is a lot of truth in this, so with that in and here are a few tips on how to make this winters training even more effective than last year

  1. Reflect on your previous season - in 2019 “what did you do well/” and “what could you do better?” Examine everything - race performances, training and also lifestyle and mental approach. Dig deep. An ‘apparently poor swim performance is as likely from sub-par sighting as it is from a lack of speed.
  2. Making small changes to training approach - Having identified limiters to progress make some small adjustments to your training. Drastic changes take time to have an effect and you are likely to go backwards before going forwards. Often a small tweak in something is all that is required. It is common for athletes to change up their training but consider whether more sleep or better nutrition choices could have a bigger impact
  3. Its all about the process - There is a big goal in the future but in order to get to that point, there are some small daily tasks you must complete. Focus on the daily process. The compound effects of these small actions is huge, over time.
  4. Bring in some speed work - Most coaches now favour a ‘concurrent’ periodisation model where all components are targeted, year-round. The emphasis on each will change with the time of year. Adding some HIT sessions now means a less drastic change in the spring
  5. Missing out on ‘alternative’ activities - In triathlon is a straight ahead activity with little changes of direction or pace. Muscles and movement patterns get overloaded. You can get the same fitness by challenging your body and mind with alternative activities - team games, martial arts, rock climbing, Or switch up your swim bike run. Try new stroke sin the pool, ride your mountain bike or give trail running a god
  6. Train with a group - Triathlon can be a very solitary sport and you can bet a lot of inspiration and motivation from training with a group.
  7. Find time for mobility or strength work - Every impressive building is built on an equally impressive foundation. Fitness is no different! The foundations for good results in 2020 come from consistent training. There is strong evidence that the ‘chronic’ injuries common in triathlon can be avoided by developing a strong robust framework (good technique and strong, stable, and mobile joints). I have seen great results from reducing swim, bike, and run activities by 10-15% and replace those with suitable strength training.


No doubt on reading through this you can come up with your own opportunities to make gains this winter. Everything is individual, so please take time to undertake some honest reflection and highlight your limiters to progress.

See you at the finish line!