Iron Dad’s 12 week Half Ironman Training Plan: Fine tuning

Alright…I’ve spent a lot of time with Coach Gale Bernhardt (pictured on the right) over this past week looking at the rest of my season, and specifically the 12 week ramp up to the Vancouver Half Ironman on July 3.

Coach Gale and I have worked together since 2005 when I first considered the possibility of doing an Ironman…and from zero to Ironman, 2 years later in 2007…and ever since…and it’s always been a delight.

…is that 6 years ago?…geez…and 4 Ironman later?…who would have thought

More details to follow over the next few days, as I distill my (and Coach Gale’s) notes, into coherent prose, and ‘how we got there’ in terms of the decision process for this season.

Here’s a few highlights of our final decisions:

  • I’m going to treat the Half Ironman, and the associated training program primarily as an experiment to fine-tune a training template for the Florida Ironman training to follow later in the year
  • a big part of this was a primary discussion on how much Intensity to put into each week…without breaking something or getting overtrained and not being able to get in quality workouts because of being too tired
  • although since I’m in the mood for performance improvement this year, I can’t be too wimpy or conservative, so the training plan needed to ‘push the envelope’ more than I’ve done in the past
  • which puts us into unknown territory in terms of how much volume and Intensity I can absorb each week/month/this year
  • which lead to a decision to keep it to a maximum of 4 workouts a week with Intensity
  • which ended up being 2 bike and 2 run, to focus on performance gains in these 2 sports
    • the long run on Tuesday and long bike on Saturday both with Intensity built-in are the KEY workouts…as far apart as possible on these BIG workouts to get in some recovery time between
    • plus Intensity bike on Wednesday and Intensity run on Thursday
  • which means that the swim gets bumped in terms of Intensity, and becomes more form-focused
    • although looking to still ‘squeeze’ some Intensity into at least 1 swim workout a week

The time that Coach Gale and I spent together gave me a renewed appreciation of just how much ‘art’ there is to setting up appropriate training programs, as opposed to ‘science’ which although providing some basic guidance, is contradictory at best.

So the ‘how we got there’ process was/is very interesting…and soooo glad to have Coach Gale in my corner…although I’m sure that she’s tired of me asking ‘why’ and ‘where did that come from’…and ‘who says’

Thanks Gale 🙂

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