As the racing season nears an end we start to think about what we'll be doing next year. Big races require you to sign up months in advance so planning ahead is crucial. Here are some tips that will hopefully help you plan your season accordingly.
You Can Complete – For those who just want to complete a race, planning out your season is relatively straight forward. There’s no real pressure on hitting set times throughout your training. You can just focus on enjoying training while gradually increasing the distances towards your race mileage.
You Can Compete – For those wanting to stand on the podium of their age group or meet a specific target time then you will have a bit more planning to do. One of the best approaches to use is categorising events into A, B or C races.
Pick your ‘A’ race – this would be your ultimate long-term training focus, everything else is just part of the training journey to get you to this race in the best condition possible.
Schedule in ‘B’ races - working back from the date of your ‘A’ race schedule in some shorter ‘B’ races. These races act as stepping stones throughout the season. They give you some medium-term focus and are great ways to test your mid-season fitness levels. However, don’t enter too many of these. Although they aren’t your primary focus they still require significant recovery time. Ensure that you allow for an appropriate tapering period in the lead up to your ‘A’ race. Planning to do a Half Ironman two weeks out from an Ironman, for example, isn’t advised.
‘C’ races – these might be single disciple events like a local 10k run or a 50mile cycling sportive. They are to be completed as fun training sessions as part of your regular routine, rather than something you would need to taper for. Try not to set yourself goals for these events, just go out and enjoy it!
It’s important that you plan in recovery and downtime. Your body cannot train for hours every day and be expected to keep it up. Plan in regular rest days and recovery periods.
Not sure how to pick your ‘A’ race? Our next post will point out some of the key things to consider before entering a race.
If you'd like some help planning out your season then contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org - we can help write up a personalised plan to get you to the start line.