Good, to very good, basic triathlon endurance is what you will need for sucessful training for your 1/2 ironman triathlon. Although you may be a newcomer in the 1/2 ironman distance you are probably not new to triathlon. You are simply a triathlete who wants to move up from the standard triathlon distance to the next one, the 1/2 ironman. The 1/2 ironman triathlon can also bring you closer to your ultimate triathlon goal of competing in a full ironman triathlon.

 

Here we have two free 1/2 ironman triathlon training programs, the first maybe better suited to you if you are not that experienced and do not have a lot of time to invest in your training. The second free 1/2 ironman triathlon training program is more for the competitive triathlete who is aiming for a strong age group finish in the 1/2 ironman triathlon.

 

The following free 1/2 ironman triathlon training programs assume that your 1/2 ironman triathlon will be at the end of June. Depending on when your 1/2 ironman triathlon is you may need to adjust the training programs accordingly. You should also plan at least one (but preferably more) standard distance triathlon as an integral part of your 1/2 ironman triathlon training program, which will allow you to test your form and equipment.

 

Regular winter training with the emphasis on running and swimming is important for this 1/2 ironman triathlon training program. Remember to use the following programs as a guide only, and adjust them to fit within your training availability and ability.

 

From January onwards you should do swimming training one to two times a week as well as some calm continuous runs. Former runners might plan a spring marathon for March or April. This is followed up with a regeneration phase of three weeks, consisting of relaxed swimming and cycling training in particular, before starting proper 1/2 ironman triathlon training of all three disciplines.

 

To read a nutrition and hydration plan that will help your half ironman triathlon race-day performance click here

 

Without including a marathon and without emphasising one particular sport, your weekly training could be as follows:

 

January

  • 1-2 x swimming
  • Running, 1 x 12-16 miles at the weekend, calm
  • 1 x 9 miles fartlek, 1 x 8 miles relaxed, stretching exercises

 

February

  • 2 x swimming, first cycling trips, maybe indoor roller training
  • 2 x running, 1 x 2 hours calm, 1 x 1:15 hours with fartlek

 

March

  • 2 x swimming
  • 3 x running, 1 x 12-16 miles calm, 1 x 1:15 hours relaxed, 1 x 10km continuous tempo run with 80-85% intensity, or participation in 6-9 mile fun runs every two weeks, stretching exercises
  • Use the weekends for cycling

 

April

  • Cycling emphasis on holidays and long weekends. 25, 35 and 50-60 miles calm cycling trips, easy pedalling, 3 x cycling a week in total
  • 1-2 x swimming, intervals 3 x 500 yds, 10 x 100 yds, 5 x 200 yds, pyramid
  • 2 x running, 1 x 12-16 miles calm, 1 x fartlek 10 miles

 

May

 

For the last six weeks leading up to your 1/2 ironman triathlon have a look at the following ½ ironman triathlon training program.

 

Free 1/2 Ironman Triathlon Training Programs For the Recreational Triathlete

Week 1 – Training Emphasis: Cycling & Swimming

Week 1 MON TUE WED THU FRI SAT SUN TOT
Swim 1,000 yds intervals 2,000 yds endurance 3,000
Bike 25 miles relaxed 50 miles brisk 30 miles relaxed
BRICK
105
Run 9 miles calm 12 miles brisk
immediately after bike workout
21

 

Week 2 – Training Emphasis: Running, Half Marathon of 21km

Week 2 MON TUE WED THU FRI SAT SUN TOT
Swim 1,500 yds intervals 2,000 yds endurance 3,500
Bike 35 miles fartlek 45 miles calm 80
Run 11 miles calm 9 miles relaxed 13 mile half marathon race 33

 

Week 3 – Training Emphasis: Regeneration

Week 3 MON TUE WED THU FRI SAT SUN TOT
Swim 4 x 500 yds endurance 2,000 yds relaxed 4,000
Bike 30 miles calm 30 miles brisk BRICK 60
Run 5 miles regen. 9 miles relaxed 8 miles calm immediately after bike workout 22

 

Week 4 – Training Emphasis: Cycling

Week 4 MON TUE WED THU FRI SAT SUN TOT
Swim 1,500 yds 2 x 1,000 yds 3,500
Bike 25 mi quick 35 mi relaxed 70 mi brisk BRICK 130
Run 9 miles fartlek 16 mi slow 3 mi calm immediately after bike 28

 

Week 5 – Training Emphasis: Swimming, Cycling, Running

Week 5 MON TUE WED THU FRI SAT SUN TOT
Swim 1,500 yds endur. 2,500 yds interval 4,000
Bike 25 mi
1 hr tempo
35 miles relaxed 50 miles brisk
BRICK
110
Run 9 miles fartlek 16 miles slow 5 miles calm
immediately after bike workout
30

 

Race Week (6) – Training Emphasis: 1/2 Ironman

Week 6 MON TUE WED THU FRI SAT SUN TOT
Swim 1,200 yds relaxed 2,000 yds race 1,200 + 2,000
Bike 30 mile fartlek 20 miles calm 56 miles race 20 mile calm regen 70 + 56
Run 9 mile short fartlek 13 miles race 9 + 13

 

If your 1/2 ironman triathlon training program more or less follows the above plan then you can feel confident when you line up for your start. As this 1/2 ironman triathlon training program does not require you to invest too much time you therefore cannot expect to be up amongst the leaders, however, you will definitely have fun. The target of the 1/2 ironman triathlon training program above is to finish, not to win.

 

Free 1/2 Ironman Triathlon Training Programs For the Competitive Age Group Triathlete

If you are a triathlete seeking a more competitive 1/2 ironman triathlon performance you should try an achieve the following individual performances:

  • 2,000 yds swimming < 42 minutes
  • 25 miles cycling < 1 hour 12 minutes
  • 10km run < 42 minutes

These times serve as a useful platform upon which to build a strong 1/2 ironman triathlon performance.

 

Again, in the following 1/2 ironman triathlon training program we have assumed that your main 1/2 ironman triathlon takes place in June. Of course you can change the 1/2 ironman triathlon training program around to fit in with your schedule if your 1/2 ironman triathlon is earlier or later.

 

Possible Year Structure for your 1/2 Ironman Triathlon Training Program

Transitional Period

 

October, November, December and perhaps January

  • 2 x a week relaxed trot for 1 – 1:15 hours.
  • A light cycling trip if possible.
  • 1-2 x a week relaxed swimming with technique exercises.
  • Analysis of previous season and planning of new season.

Preparation Period

 

February, March, April and May

 

Competition Period

 

End of May – September

 

January

  • First part of the preparation period.
  • Training volume increases at a low level of physical intensity, heart rate 130.
  • Make use of cross-country skiing opportunities.
  • Stretching exercises and light strength exercises support all-round blood circulation in the body.
  • Running: Approx 30-35 miles, steady continuous runs, 1x a week long, continuous run of 16 miles. An athlete wishing to run his spring marathon can do runs of 18 miles. Occasional participation in popular runs, however not with maximum effort.
  • Cycling: In dry weather a 1 hour cycling trip in weekends. Athletes who enjoy cycling on the roller may prepare for cycling training in this way.
  • Swimming: 2-3 x a week. Techinque training, endurance swimming and intervals.

February – Swimming Month

  • Your aim should be to swim as often as possible. Ideally 4x a week, 2000 to 2500 yds each week.
  • Running: Per week 1x 8 miles, 9 miles fartlek, 12 miles calm.
  • Cycling: Depending on weather, relaxed cycling trips with 100 rpm.

March – Running Month

  • As well as normal swimming training, 2-3 x per week running, 1 x endurance and 2 x intervals.
  • Cycling trips should be on your agenda at weekends and 1 x a week, so as to prepare for the cycling month in April. If possible you should try and cycle to work.
  • The emphasis is on running in this month.
  • It would also be ok to have January – swimming month, February – running month, March – cycling month and mid-late April for the spring marathon.
  • You should aim for 3-4 running sessions a week, 1x long of 16 miles, one brisk run plus two relaxed runs.
  • Don’t forget your stretching exercises for those parts of your body that were under particular strain.

April – Cycling Month

  • If you have completed your spring marathon then you can, apart from relaxed runs in this regeneration phase, devote a lot more time to swimming and cycling.
  • Emphasis cycling takes place on the weekends and over the Easter Holidays.
  • Tours of up to 60 miles with 100-110 rpm on the small chain gear are important here.
  • You schedule could be: Fridays 45 miles, Saturdays 60 miles plus a 5 mile run, Sundays 56 miles, Wednesdays 30 miles.
  • The main priority here is basic endurance in cycling, and for this reason it only makes sense to start with intervals at the end of this month, at the earliest.
  • 700 miles in two weeks is a good base for the oncoming season.
  • Swimming: intervals and 1 x continuous swim.
  • Running: 2-3 x 1:00 – 1:15 hours.

May

  • At the weekends you should practice the cycle-run transition. In each case, one session relaxed, the other brisk.
  • 1 x a week a quick cycling session (eg: out and back 3 x 2 mile interval, the same distance with easy pedalling in between; 3 x 3 miles, 3 miles relaxed in between).
  • Swimming as in April – intervals and 1 x continuous swim.
  • Running – 1 x per week intervals (eg: out and back 2 x 5000 yds at 85%, 6-8 x 1000 yds at 10km running speed, trotting break 1 km until pulse reaches 110).
  • You could enter a short triathlon competition as a dress rehearsal.

June

Following is a detailed 1/2 ironman triathlon training program for June, which will give you an idea of how you can organize your training.

 

This half ironman triathlon training program cannot take your own circumstances into consideration so you may want to adjust it to fit in with your own situation. Remember that each of the following workouts should be followed by stretching.

 

Free 1/2 Ironman Triathlon Training Programs For the Competitive Age Group Triathlete

Week 1 – Training Emphasis: Cycling & Combination Training

Week 1 MON TUE WED THU FRI SAT SUN TOT
Swim 2,000 yds intervals 2,500 yds endurance 4,500
Bike 60 miles calm 50 miles brisk 45 miles relaxed
BRICK
155
Run 8 miles relaxed 8 miles relaxed
immediately after bike workout
9 miles with fartlek 25

 

Week 2 – Training Emphasis: Swim, Bike, Run & Combination Training

Week 2 MON TUE WED THU FRI SAT SUN TOT
Swim 2,500 yds intervals 2,000 yds intervals 2,000 yds endurance 2,500 yds endurance
BRICK
9,000
Bike 60 miles calm 30 mi (4×5 mi quick) 56 mi brisk
BRICK
146
Run 9 mi quick (2×3 mi) 15 miles calm 3 miles relaxed
immediately after bike workout
9 miles calm
immediately after swim
36

 

Week 3 – Training Emphasis: Penultimate Week with the Last Long Run and Bike Sessions

Week 3 MON TUE WED THU FRI SAT SUN TOT
Swim 2,000 yds 2,000 yds 3,000 yds endurance 7,000
Bike 70 miles relaxed 35 mi (3x 6 mi quick) 50 miles calm 155
Run 9 mi (6x 1,000m
at 10km race pace)
16 miles calm 8 miles relaxed 33

 

Week 4 – Training Emphasis: Half Ironman Triathlon Race. Regeneration Beforehand

Week 4 MON TUE WED THU FRI SAT SUN TOT
Swim 2,000 relaxed 1,000 yds endurance 2,200 yds 3,000 + race
Bike 30 mi (12 mi 85%) 25 relaxed 56 mi 55 + race
Run 6 mi (2.5 mi 90%) 3 mi trot 13 mi 13 + race