When it’s race week, I highly suggest a taper.
A taper week means a reduction in volume and intensity of training and a focus on sleep, rest and recovery.
That does not mean do nothing, but keep all efforts less than 30 minutes with form focus and perhaps a few shorter 1-2 minute intervals.
After your easy 3-10 day taper depending on the length of your race, it is really important to do a short brick (swim, bike, run) the day before the race. I even recommend it on the morning of the race itself.
This doesn’t mean to go balls to the wall and waste all your energy.
Save it for the race.
The purpose of this pre-race brick is to remind your body of the intensity you will be performing during the race the next day or in a few minutes. Waking it up and shaking off the cobwebs after taking a few easy days to rest and recover.
You may feel all out of whack and sluggish doing it…
and the “I’m feeling like I am so DARN SLOW” or the “OMG I am not going to race well” thoughts are going to come out and play.
It’s normal for that to come up, but tell yourself afterwards that this is why you’re doing the brick.
Rehearse and visualize your race in your head and remind yourself that you trained for this and “YOU ARE SO READY” for this race tomorrow or in a little while.
It’s ok to not feel great today but tomorrow is the race when it counts.
Ideally, you’ll want to do a 10-15 minute swim, bike, run each with 4-6 x ONLY 1-2 minute over your race pace intervals, with 2-5 minutes easy recovery.
So…. save the power and speed for the race and BRAGGING rights of accomplishing whatever goals you set for yourself. Race day is always a great day if you chose to make it one!
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Erinne Guthrie is a USA Triathlon Level II Certified Coach since 1999 and Chief Motivating Officer at Full Circle Coaching, LLC since 2010. Creator of Triathlon Transformation. She has been training, racing and coaching triathletes since 1997. She is also a CHEK Holistic Lifestyle Coach Level 3, USMS Master’s Swim Coach, Motivational Speaker, Metabolic Efficiency Specialist, Mom, Mermaid and much much more.