After the recently concluded Ironman Philippines, everyone wants in on the action. Here’s how to plan your 2022 race calendar
Photos by Tristan Tamayo
With the recent conclusion of Ironman Philippines in Subic, one thing is clear: Racing is back and hopefully here to stay.
The common sentiment I hear from a lot of athletes on social media is an overwhelming sense of FOMO from the race. Seeing people swim, bike, and run their way to the finish line, one can’t help but feel jealous or, at the very least, nostalgic about the whole racing experience.
Furthermore, with race organizers releasing their calendars for the year, a lot of triathletes have been planning out their season. We’re here to give you a few tips to help get the best out of 2022.
Assess your current fitness level
Being dormant for the past two years is common for many triathletes. While it’s easy to jump the gun and sign up for the usual events we join, the more prudent thing to do is to look within and assess what we can currently manage.
From this starting point, it’s easier to look ahead and see what events we could consider. For example, if you haven’t been doing anything at all, a marathon in four months might be tight. Instead, settle for a 10K or 21K. This will make the whole journey more pleasurable and safer.
Check your schedule
Many have been working from home, which tends to be a double-edged sword. Yes, commute times have been factored out of the equation but other complexities also arise.
A work-from-home scenario tends to put some constraints as parents need to micromanage their day-to-day activities. Also, such a scenario often leads to more intensive workload as you “never leave the office.” Here’s what you can do: Check how many hours you can manage on a daily or weekly basis. From there, ask the advice or assessment of a coach to see what would work.
If you don’t have enough time, focus on shorter events or at the very least, temper your expectations on race day. Remember, it’s also not all about volume; if you’re smart about managing workouts and workload, you can make the most out of each training block.
This will, of course, vary depending on the distance and difficulty of the event. In general, allocating eight to 12 weeks of base and another four weeks of build is a good start. Don’t forget that roughly a week of taper is the bare minimum if you want to do well on race day.
In case you don’t have enough time, focus on the base work and sprinkle in some race-specific simulations. This is not ideal but usually gets the job done.
This pandemic has taught us one valuable lesson: adapt or die. Not only does it apply to businesses, it can also be said for athletes.
A lot of times, races might run the risk of getting rescheduled, canceled, or changed. With this being a realistic scenario, it’s important to know how to adjust and change our plans depending on the current conditions.
Whether extending the build phase, refocusing, or ditching the plan altogether, we need to be on our toes. I suggest getting the help of a competent coach to help guide and plan for you. By having several options prior to specific milestones in your training plan, it’ll be easier to adapt to the times.
Have some training questions, feedback or suggestions for future articles? Drop a note in the comments section below or on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. You can also get in touch with Don directly here.