In IM training, there is one set of workouts that I feel is the standard for a solid race day. It proves you have the durability (or close to the durability) required to get through the day while getting close to your speed potential. The workouts I refer to as “the standard” are two back to back days which consist of:
Day #1 – 6 hour aerobic descending pace ride, followed by a 60 minute aerobic transition run.
Day #2 – 2 hour recovery ride followed by a 2 hour aerobic descending pace transition run.
It’s not enough to just complete this once and say “I’m ready for IM”. Instead, this needs to be something that you can churn out week after week without becoming injured or burnt out. Its the “standard”……nothing overly taxing. For some elites, prior to race day, they may go beyond this for a specific overload however, most weeks during the buildup include this key sequence. What’s interesting is that to be able to complete this sequence without burnout or injury, an athlete needs pretty darn good durability. Durability like this really only comes with getting close to critical volume (at least 2/3) on a weekly basis. An athlete who attempts this sequence with no other workouts during the week, would never make it over the long term due to this realization.
If you make this set of workouts your standard, its a good bet that your standard IM races times will improve too.