All New The Triathlete’s Training Bible – The World’s Most Comprehensive Training Guide by Joe Friel
When you start out in triathlons, you don’t realize the involvement of the metrics and the actual complexity of the sport. As you get involved and participate in several triathlons, you realize that there’s more to the sport than just training. Joe Friel’s new book, The Triathlete’s Training Bible – The World’s Most Comprehensive Training Guide, is “essentially an advanced course in the philosophy and methodology of training for triathlon.”
To be honest, I couldn’t put the book down. It was well-written and very easy to understand. There were so many valuable takeaways and way too much to list here, so if you love the sport of triathlon, then I would strongly suggest you picking up a copy on either Velopress or Amazon.
It was interesting to read Joe’s feedback on his thoughts about triathletes. He said that we are all “big dreamers” and that both physical and mental fitness should be trained consistently.
There’s a chapter on mental fitness, which I found incredibly important. He said when you are training, find something that you did well in and try to relive it in your thoughts right before bedtime and then go to sleep. He says it will stick with you. The other thing I found interesting he says to act as if you are a confident athlete. As soon as you show that there is fear, there will be fear. He suggests to study others who are confident and emulate their behavior. This will make you feel confident on race day.
He also talks about gathering a team of people to help you reach your goals – a coach, a physical therapist, chiropractor, bike fitter, massage therapist, etc. Use these folks and feel that they are your team, he says.
Friel also talks about training basics, training intensity and purposeful training. What I found particularly interesting is he suggested that you evaluate what you did the year before and come up with three seasonal goals. These goals should be measurable and when you work out every day, you work out with a purpose.
He obviously also talks about the swim bike run. He says the swim is the only sport of the three that you need to develop a skill. He suggests going three times a week to the pool and joining a master class. As for the bike, Friel says that every year you should have a bike fit, even if you had one originally. Finally, he notes that in addition to all of this you should have an assessment. For example, go to a physical therapist and have him/her assess your strengths and weaknesses. He also suggests having a mental assessment, bike fitting and assess your equipment. What do you need to help you get to the next level?
The book is chock full of information, but one of the areas that resonated for me was the “planning a season” section. He delves into your prep (preparing to train), your base, build, peak, race and transition periods. He also talks about setting specific goals, like I want to have “normalized power of 250 watts before April 10th.” Specifically, he says:
- establish a seasonal goal – no more than 3 per season
- determine your training objectives
- set your annual training volume
- prioritize your races
- divide the season into periods
- estimate your weekly volume
Joe Friel also discusses how to figure out your weekly plans from the annual plan. This is quite helpful, especially for those who don’t have a coach. I found it helpful because for me, it validated what my coach was doing and provided me with a systemic approach to training.
I found his takeaways on swim technique so valuable. I actually tried them out in the pool the other day and had one of my fastest swims! He says there are four skills to master — posture, direction, length, and catch. In the book, he describes exactly what you should be doing to improve.
He also gives you drills on running and cycling as well. I found his chapter on strength training highly important too. He actually provided the reader with routines that will help improve performance.
Joe Friel is one of the guru’s of triathlons and he founded the TrainingBible Coaching and also co-founded TrainingPeaks, a web-based software company that most triathletes use for training and racing.
The All New The Triathlete’s Training Bible is a must have for all triathletes, no matter what your experience. The takeaways are invaluable and it’s a great source to refer back to time and time again!
The book is available on VeloPress or Amazon and the price is $26.95.
I have a free book available. Anyone who comments below and provides me with their mailing address will get the book!