Here’s the usual predicament when it comes to triathlon strength training… You’re a busy person, and you’re training for a triathlon.
It’s already challenging enough scheduling in your regular workouts, let alone anything extra.
But don’t let your strength training fall by the wayside!
Even though you’re training for THREE sports stuffed into one event, strength training is something that you won’t want to skimp on, believe me!
One way to save time is to combine multiple movement into one overall exercise. You’ll get more bang for you buck while getting a full-body session in 1/3 of the time.
I love using combo moves to create a triathlon strength training workout because not only are they time savers, but because of how they train your body: this workout will not just strengthen important muscles, but also boost your anaerobic threshold, which simply means you’ll be able to go faster, longer, and harder.
The result? You won’t become winded as easily, and you’ll bounce back from tough workouts sooner!
“Don’t underestimate Specific Triathlon Strength Training as an important part of your overall training program!”
This is a great workout for triathlon strength training specifically because: it’s fast; it’s simple; and it’s very effective for your triathlon-specific technique.
So here’s the scoop on my latest strength workout for triathletes:
- These combo moves will strengthen your entire body by using different muscle groups that work synergistically.
- Don’t rest between any of the sets. You can only rest after you get all the way through.
- When you finish the routine, take a break and then repeat it two more times.
- Pair it up with a swim workout, a “lighter” training day, or a dedicated strength training day.
- Trust me, it’s going to burn – but that’s a good thing – push yourself and use picture perfect form!
Let’s go for it!
Spider man push up:
Build power through your upper body, rock your core, and strengthen hip stabilizers all at the same time with this killer triathlon strength move. Plus, this simple movement will have you gasping for air, which means you’re unwittingly cranking up the cardio! And we’re just getting started.
How To Do It!
Start with a basic pushup. The trick here is to kick your knee high and to the side while you’re lowering to the bottom of the pushup movement. Target your hips by keeping your leg pressed toward the sky. Return your foot to starting position as you complete the pushup. Alternate sides with each pushup. 10-15 reps
Squat, Curl, Squat, Press:
This one’s such a lung buster, and that’s exactly why I love it for my triathlon strength training arsenal! But you’ll also be building some prime muscle movements all the while.
How To Do It!
Grab some heavy dumbbells, and drop it like a squat! Give it a bicep curl as you raise back up from the squat. Next, hold the dumbbells at the top of the range of motion and go down for a second squat. Shoulder press the weights, rotating palms forward, and extend your legs all at the same time. Go into your next rep by lowering the dumbbells all the way back down to your side while squatting again. 10-12 reps
Drop Step Wood Chop:
The reverse lunge is an awesome power move for excellent running and cycling strength. And I love twisting motions to tie in some great core work – that also shows up big in triathlon technique as well as injury prevention. Put them together for a killer combo perfect for triathlon strength training.
How To Do It!
Grab a medium weight dumbbell or kettle bell with two hands. Take a long step backwards as you bring the weight across your front and to the side of your body. As you press off your front foot, driving forward with your hips to recover from the lunge, lift the weight up and over (with straight elbows) and reach to the sky on the opposite side. Alternate sides with each rep. 10 reps on each side
If you can survive 20 reps of this move, you’re on your way to setting some new PR’s this triathlon season. I know you’re up for a serious core challenge, so try what I call the Pike-Jack Pushup!
How To Do It!
Start in pushup position with feet balancing on the stability ball. Lift you hips high into the air (pike) and return to start position. Kick knees to chest to crunch your abs, which will roll the ball inward (jackknife). Go down into an incline pushup (yeah, that’s right!) as you kick your toes back out, and press up with your hands to finish one rep! As many reps as you can do with good form
Dead Lift / Bent Row:
Think about it: an efficient swim stroke transfers power through your core into your arms and legs and that helps propel you through the water. Without a solid platform to build on, energy will be lost in transfer. I love this one, and could talk about this move all day! This is a combo made up of a common exercise, the row, and a highly under-rated exercise for the core stabilizing benefits, the dead lift.
How To Do It!
Start with medium to heavy dumbbells, standing with feet shoulder-width and slightly bent knees. Hinge at the hips, keeping your back naturally straight, as low as you comfortably can or close to parallel. Lock in your core to make a solid base. Rock the row, driving elbows high and squeezing shoulder blades back. Lower the row, then think about using your hamstrings to return to the upright position. 12-15 reps
Tricep Press / Plank Hold:
The results of move will really show up on your bike because it mimics the aero position. But I’m loving this exercise for the swim, specifically because it targets your triceps and core muscle group in the prone position.
How To Do It!
You’ll start in a plank hold with elbows at a 90, and lock it in by flexing your lower abs tight. Press off of one palm to extend your elbows one arm at a time. Stay perfectly straight with your body, but allow your torso to twist. From pushup position, lower your body by bending one arm at a time, and keep the tension on your triceps while going back down. 8 reps on each side
Repeat the workout at least two times through, and minimize resting between sets.
Triathlon strength training exercises are a vital part of your training program and will increase your performance and keep you injury-free. Although it’s tough to make the extra time for it, make sure it happens by planning it into your weekly routine, and then use these time-saving combo moves it get in and get out fast.
It will pay off, and you’ll be glad you did!
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