Brent McMahon on Off Season Training
The off season is an important part of the race season. It’s an opportunity to recover, refresh and enjoy some things you don’t get to do while in season. For everyone this looks a little different, but it should always involve some complete time off from training, and some activities that work in more dynamic planes of movement. For a lot of triathletes these or things they are not very good at, but if you want to do the sport for a long time and enjoy it, they are vital. Every offseason for me I like to take at least two complete weeks off, no swimming, biking or running, at all. Maybe some hikes and walks but nothing structured. This gives my mind and body a total break from pushing myself and being on a regimen. Sometimes this period is longer depending on how I feel and how the season ended up. If you’re nursing an injury or a few little niggly pains then more now is better than later. Once I get back to activity I like to mix it up with different terrain and locations.
I like to swim in different pools or different groups to just get a change of pace and scenery. Training is less specific this time of year so you can do someone else’s workout just for fun and not worry about hitting pace times or goals. I also like to spend more time on the trails both cycling and running, again, it’s a change in scenery and it’s all about refreshing your outlook. So mountain biking and gravel riding is my favorite way to spend the offseason exploring new roads and trails. These also help work on that dynamic aspect I was talking about. Mountain biking requires more core work and side to side movement, these are key in the offseason to build core strength and stability, but in a fun way. Hitting the gym a bit more often in the offseason as well to work on power and instabilities is also a great focus for this time of year. It’s fun to go with a partner to make it social and entertaining. You're work focused and work hard all race season so it’s nice to have a little more social training when you can. Also, those family members that allow you to spend many hours training each week should be another focus in your offseason. They make a sacrifice for you to do your racing so it’s time to pay that back by giving them the time they deserve and probably want. Ultimately, have fun, stay healthy and enjoy yourself.