Tapering for Triathlons
i wanted to know about tapering early in the season. every program i have done shows about a week+ taper before a race. at the same time it is early in the season. should i do this taper before my race or continue to train hard up to a couple days before the race then do a short taper and save the longer tapers for the middle and end of the season when i really want to be at my best?
Neal from Ohio
Thank you for contacting TriathaNewbie.com!
If there are readers unaware of what Tapering is, it’s a time period roughly a week before your event where you drastically cut your training down to allow your body to recover and rest. This allows the muscles to heal, build and strengthen which will give you the maximum muscle capacity to compete at your best. If you do not taper, your muscles will be competing at a reduced capacity.
To answer your question, we suggest that you follow whatever training guide you’re using to navigate through your triathlon season unless it only shows you how to train for one event.
If you have a full triathlon schedule, we suggest that you pick one or two priority races (spaced adequately apart) and do a full taper for those races. Realize that if your schedule is packed full, you will have to sacrifice some of the non-priority races as glorified brick training sessions and do minimal tapers preceding them.
Please remember that your body NEEDS time to recover in order to work at its potential and avoid injury. Check out these articles to learn more about Triathlon Recovery Methods:
- Recovery & Sprint Triathlon For Beginner Triathletes
- Triathlon Race Recovery Time
- Recovery is Key, A Detailed Strategy for the Beginner Triathlete
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