Essential Winter Training Guide

Winter training is never easy but if you strike the right balance between indoor and outdoor sessions you’ll be in great shape when the triathlon season kicks off in the spring

by Michelle Arthurs

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Switch your focus

Winter is also a good time to address any technique weaknesses. Level-three coach and GB age-group triathlete Steve Cassen (, says, "The off season is a great opportunity to put away the stopwatch and shift your focus to reinventing your swim, bike or run technique. You can seek professional guidance from a coach to identify areas of technique that you can refine, with specific exercises and drills that you can incorporate into your weekly training sessions."

This kind of training may mean you have to limit your bike and run sessions. "To learn how to improve your technique you may have to take a few steps back in order to break through and get the overall improvements in performance that you want next season," says Cassen.

You can also work on your strength and conditioning. "Winter gives you a chance to become stronger and avoid injury in the summer, so if there were some exercises you avoided during the summer because they made you too sore, then now is the time to get on top of them so you can be strong all year round," says Hayes.

Incorporating strength exercises such as deadlifts and squats, and using the wobble board and gym balls available in most gyms, can help to iron out niggles.

Dewar says, "As the race season goes on, athletes develop imbalances; now is the time to examine yourself and try to address those. I recommend triathletes seek professional advice, and also make sure they are properly assessed before using weights, to make sure their alignment is correct."

By keeping supple and flexible you may be able to limit the chance of any imbalances returning next summer, says Sanderson. "I encourage athletes to work on their core, and also to use the foam roller frequently to get rid of any knots in the calves."

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