I completed my first triathlon, Nation's Triathlon, last year and I'm scheduled to do the Columbia Triathlon in May. I enjoy training outside but the cold weather has become a major deterrent for me. This in turn has affected my motivation. Anybody have tips for winter training? Do you find training indoors effective? How do you stay motivated? Also, any general tips for a new, self-training triathlete like myself. Thanks! =)
Setting up a plan for your training, which includes setting out definte, measurable goals ("get faster" doesn't cut it; "shave 3 minutes off my olympic distance run time" does), will help. Realize that what you're doing now is setting the base for the training you'll be doing later.
Do you have a bike trainer? There are spinervals DVDs that you watch while you ride to get in a better, more focused workout (though by the end of winter you'll be very, very tired of Coach Troy yelling, "spin it, spin it, spin it!") There are also books and web sites that set out various indoor training workouts, depending on your goals for the season.
This is also a good time to work on technique in the pool, reminding yourself that it will make you more efficient and allow you to get out of the water better rested (and possible faster) for the rest of the race.
The Triathlete's Training Bible and Your Best Triathlon, both by Joe Friel, are good tools for self-coaching athletes. They describe how to set out your season, set goals, measure progress, etc.
And there's always posting to the forum and showing up for DC Tri events. Happy Hour support helps. :)
Riding my trainer is how I catch up on all the movies I missed during the season. :)
For running outdoors, getting the gear right can be tricky. This link from the blog Run with Perserverence:
is useful for what to wear at different temperatures. (handed down to me from Jeanne McCann--anyone remember her? :-) )
I don't have the equivalent for cycling, but I'm sure someone does.
Otherwise, cycling on the trainer isn't bad if you limit to 1h and have a workout to focus on (spinervals, trainerroad, etc.).