Planning for Proper Training
You are gaining an understanding of the rigors of training for a triathlon, and you realize that your life is about to undergo some significant changes. If you are single and truly unattached, charge ahead and good luck!
If you have a family, now would be the time to consider how this new regimen is going to affect them. You can avoid a lot of stress by getting your spouse — and perhaps your children — to buy into your plans. It will help if your life partner is also an athlete. That will mean there is a greater chance that your spouse will understand why you want to test yourself this way and why you want to spend so much time preparing for it. Even better, if it's just the two in the household, you might both undertake the training and enjoy it together.
If your spouse is not into participating in athletics, explain that your new goal is important to you, and don't forget to be honest about how much time it is going to take. Explain also that on occasion you will be too tired from training to participate in some of the normal and expected family activities.
What if I have only 20 minutes for a run that I had scheduled for 45 minutes?
Go ahead with your run. A 20-minute workout beats no workout every time. Life will get in the way of your training now and then. Make the most of the time you have.
You can alleviate some of the pressure created by conflicts between your training needs and those of your family with clever scheduling. The more workouts you can plan for early mornings and during your lunch hours, the more time you will retain for your family during the evening. It will also help if you can find training facilities — a health club or running and biking courses — close to home, cutting down on the time you spend going to and returning from your workouts.
Don't panic or grumble if a family crisis or obligation interferes with a workout. Interruptions are inevitable and will not significantly affect your training so long as they are held to a minimum.
A 30-minute run during your lunch break at work can be a very beneficial workout in your triathlon training. The same goes for a short swim. Both fit in with your overall plan to have easy workouts that complement more intense sessions.
Don't focus so intently on your triathlon training that you forget you have a family and friends. The triathlon and training for it are supposed to be sources of good feelings, not ill will.
It will also be beneficial if you limit your weekend workouts to one day, perhaps on Saturday morning. That leaves all day Sunday for family time. You will be able to give your spouse and children the attention they want and need, and they will feel better about losing you to your quest at other times.