Trimarni camp recap - Day 3 (intense "long" brick)

Day 3 of the Trimarni camp was designed to be our key workout because of the specificity of the workout as well as how it feel in the training camp training plan.

According to the Trimarni philosophy of getting faster before you go longer and training smarter to train harder, we termed Saturday as our "long" workout of camp.

3 hour bike + 60-80 min run. 

Rather than having our endurance athletes bike 5+ hours or  run 2+ hours (no matter the fitness level), we utilize the beginning phase of our training plans to get our athletes stronger through strength training. The main goal of any training plan is consistency and many times, the idea of "base" building includes lots of long steady (or slow) miles and much time is wasted when the body can be getting stronger. We find many athletes are 14,16 or 20 weeks out from race day and spend their weekends riding 5+ hours or running 2+ hours as "base" prep. Sure, we understand that you must have good endurance to "survive" endurance training for a half or full Ironman and there needs to be long workouts for mental and physical training but the idea is not to just do them but to do them well with a plan and a purpose.

Once a strong foundation is in place, then it's time to get faster. This is where we encourage our athletes to consider their long-term goals as well longevity in the sport of triathlons (or running). Rather than signing up for endurance races because of the challenge now, get yourself faster over the next 4, 6, or even 12 months so that when you commit to your goal of finishing or racing in an endurance event, you not only have a strong template to work with but one that is faster than 6, 12 or 24 months prior.
I realize that it's super easy to register for races and often times, you sign up for a race because it is the right time in your lifetime and I love that.  But to ensure a consistent and healthy journey to your starting line, it's important that you are always patient with your journey and also progress gradually. Too much too soon is not a great equation and because most athletes want a body that can get faster and stronger over time, trying to train at high intensity during "long" workouts is not the most effective or efficient way to metabolize fuel OR to enjoy consistency with training.

Thus, we have created many key workouts for our endurance athletes (and us included) of higher intensity intervals during a long-ish bike (at specific phases in training) and we follow that workout with an interval run.
You can improve endurance with high intensity intervals at moderate distances. However, it's very difficult to get faster by doing steady long miles.

Not only is our quality approach to training  great for placing a healthy amount of training stress on the body for the body to get stronger and faster with improved endurance but the concept of intervals helps with pacing, to better understand (and use) sport nutrition effectively (to be better prepared for race day) and also to put your mind into race day situations.
Sure, you can bike hard and have an epic long workout. 

Sure, you can run long and strong on fresh legs without a bike preceding the workout.

Sure, you can train all day and talk about it on your blog or social media.

But, as a coach, I want to see you execute on race day and put all that training to good use.

Endurance triathlon racing takes a lot of time, commitment, money and effort so it's is not about how fast or strong you were in training during a long bike or run but instead, how you can put those sports together, following a swim and also how you can digest/absorb nutrition to postpone fatigue and meet metabolic and hydration needs.

And most importantly, as an age group athlete, how you can balance the training with life.

For our camp workout on day #3:
7:15am meet at NTC.
7:45am start workout

Bike - 3 hour rolling hill interval bike:
(athletes fueled with Infinit SPEED or GO FAR and I helped each athlete with scoops per bottle. All athletes were required to carry 3 bottles with them and encouraged to drink every 10-15 minutes).
40 min EZ warm-up (it was a bit cold out so we included a few 1 min on/off intervals to wake up the legs)

MS1: (main set #1)
4 x 5 min @ Z4 watts (or Olympic Tri pace) w/ 90 sec  EZ spin in between.
(we always focus on normalized lap power for intervals but because of rolling terrain the normalized power helps for better pacing)
5 - 10 min EZ spin recovery
 MS2 (main set #2)
8 min @ Z4 (Olympic Tri Pace) + 4 min @ low Z3 (1/2 Iron Pace) - keeping a steady cadence, trying to "recovery" while still pushing 
2 min EZ spin
 8 min @ Z4 (Olympic Tri Pace) + 4 min @ low Z3 (1/2 Iron Pace)
Rest of the ride is steady strong pace (ironman effort) except on the trail or the neighborhood with stop signs which is always just EZ spin.
T-RUN: Long Run. 60 - 80 min.
(So proud of my campers - EVERY athlete ran off the bike!)
(we gave the option if athletes were not comfortable running for an hour after a 3 hour ride, they could walk for time on your feet after time on the saddle)
Warmup (WU): 10 min out and back for 20 min just very comfortable run with stops as needed.  (recommend 10-30 sec walks every 8-10 min if  feeling heavy legs or just want to stretch out and lower the HR).
Walk 1-3 minutes - shake out the legs, lower the HR, hydrate, etc.
We regrouped back at the NTC. Athletes had the opportunity to use NAPALM which I love as an easy and effective fuel on the run. 
1 ounce = 50 calories. It is a powder and you can pour it in your flask (instead of using gels) and top with water. It has the consistency of a sport drink but is more concentrated so this is good to use on race day by supplementing with water at aid stations to meet hydration needs. For camp, we performed out and back so athletes could refill water at our cars with our 5-gallon jug)
Main set: 
30 min of alternating 5 min @ strong/faster pace and 5 min @ comfortable pace (you may also walk here if you need to correct your form or gather yourself). (this is a perceived effort pace - whatever your "strong" is on Saturday, that is your effort).
Walk 1-3 minutes - lower the HR, shake out the legs, stretch, etc.
Cool down: 10 EZ/ comfortable run for a quality brick endurance-prep workout.
For our athletes who have a half or full IM in the next 4 months (me and Karel did this part with our athletes), they ran 80 min off the bike.  After the MS is completed, walk 1-3 minutes to stretch things out and lower the HR and then add 15 min of steady strong running to finish the run. This should feel comfortable as if you are settling into your Ironman pace (or long run pace). Then cool down as needed.
For the run, I did not want my campers running 1+ hour with only 6 ounces of water in a flask or nothing at all. What I recommend is if you do not have a fuel belt with at least 10+ ounces of water for a 90 min or less run, do loops so that by 30-40 min you can refill your bottle with water (and sport nutrition). Not only will you ensure better energy and recovery but you will also simulate race day condition with consistent fueling. 

After an AWESOME workout from our campers, we all stretched (some collapsed...in a good way) and we all talked about this great workout performed by 15 amazing bodies.
I had our normal snacks - Kind bars, coconut water, water, whey and vegan protein powder as well as sliced oranges and strawberries as well as a special treat from Trimarni athlete Sara who delivered homemade peanut butter chocolate chip cookies for our campers. Thank you Sara!!!)

We only had about 90 minutes to rest, eat and clean up so I also gave my campers suggestions as to what to eat to help refuel from our 4-4:20 hr workout and also to fuel for our next workout on the schedule, which was a swim.
I knew our campers would be tired for they had several workouts within 2.5 days of training in them so our afternoon swim (long course) was more of active recovery. Also, because our athletes were tired (Karel and me, too!) it was important that I stressed the importance of proper planning of workouts. Sure, you can do workouts just because they are on the schedule but the swim was not a "workout" designed for training purposes. Just a reminder when you are trying to balance training with life, sometimes it's better to rest if you are feeling tired later in the day and get a good meal in your system and good night of sleep and get yourself together for a great workout the next day (instead of just going through the motions for an evening workout after a long day). It's all about balance. 

3-4pm long course swim: 
10 min warm-up
100 focusing on head position
3 x 100's w/ fins - drills (catch-up and finger tip drag)

MS 3x's: no fins
200 smooth swimming
4 x 50's w/ 10 sec rest (#1-2 build to fast. #3-4 1/2 pool fast, 1/2 pool EZ)

100 cool down

After our swim, I provided a few snacks for campers to help with recovery (dates, coconut water, whey protein) before our team dinner at Goombas.

With almost a half IM distance triathlon completed on Saturday after 4.5 hours of training on Friday and around 2.5 hours of training on Thursday, I wanted to be sure my athletes had fueled and happy tummies for Sunday so a family-owned, local Italian restaurant was the perfect place to eat an early dinner (reservations for 5pm) and to enjoy a motivational talk with 5-year Trimarni coaching athlete Gary (65 years old) who is a top age group sprint and olympic distance triathlete in Clearwater.
Thank you Gary for inspiring us all! 

After a team picture, Karel and I chatted about our last workout of camp which was the mock triathlon - putting all the pieces together. 
The daily fuel station...back of my car.

Safe, effective and efficient fuel. Thanks INFINIT!

Sharing my Oakley women shades with the ladies at camp who didn't have Oakley's so that everyone could wear safe, stylish and functional eyewear during training. Email me if you'd like to know my fav shades. 

Real men wear pink - looking good Karel!

Racking our bikes at the NTC. A great facility to hold a triathlon camp!

4.5 hour workout - DONE!

Thank you SARA!!

Quick refueling in my hotel room. 

Beautiful afternoon swim!

Fun with Go pro!

Underwater selfie.

What an inspiring, motivating and awesome group of campers!!

Let's eat!

Gary is so inspiring! What a great athlete to coach!

Karel takes his hydration very seriously.



One more day to go!!!