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Scheduling help - how fit it all in?
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Please help me finish my training schedule. Life has me doing the majority of my workouts early in the am. Which means I am limited to an hour (simply cannot get myself up before 4:30-4:45 as I can't go to bed before my son). After work (pm) workouts are very tough as we have a 4 year old who needs my time. I also do everything I can to support my wife’s running. All her own idea – I just do whatever needs to happen to support it.

Right now I am focusing on building my run, so that really needs 3x a week. This will happen for the next 10 weeks or so. I just finished a similar focus on the bike and am content with the results. Then the sports can then even out. I have found the swim workouts help with leg recovery, so setting the hard workouts the day before works well.

I would really like to lift 2-3x a week – get the strength up now so I can maintain it later. Most efficient to do that in the am as fewer people in the gym. I can get in/out in under an hour (including warm-up/cool-down).


Monday – AM – lift
– PM – Run?


Tuesday – AM – Bike
– PM

Wednesday – AM – Master’s Swim

Thursday – AM RUN

Friday – Master’s Swim

Saturday – Long Run

Sunday – Long Bike Ride + Run (10 min)

My wife runs Tuesday/Thursday/and one weekend day. Which limits my options.

So far recovery has been ok. If things get to be too much, I miss a non-crucial workout and don't beat myself up about it.

What suggestions do you have? I really can’t do things at work – especially not until it warms up again. Never mind I HATE running in the am. Which only increases when it is a treadmill run early in the day. But that is another thread.


Thank you
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Re: Scheduling help - how fit it all in? [prefersdirt] [ In reply to ]
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I don't have any specific training suggestions just thoughts on time. Are there any times in the week that you can invent time? What I mean by that is find some short training time when you are meeting family obligations. I have 3 boys, 7, 4, and 1 1/2. I do all my training in the mornings except when I find "free" time. Tue/Thurs, my 7 year old has wrestling. So, I run the high school gym track during that time. Sunday evening my 4 year old has swim lessons. So, I swim laps with my 7 year old during that. I end up finding 2-3 hrs of training time/week doing that and keep my wife happy and kids needs met. I also do squeeze in a quick run on lunch from time to time but those are less reliable times and need to be short and very easy because I won't have time for a post run shower. ewwwww

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Re: Scheduling help - how fit it all in? [TriRugby] [ In reply to ]
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I wish I could invent time as you suggest. Really is a great suggestion. Right now, the schedule goes like this: Rise, exercise and get ready for work. My wife and I work together getting the little one ready. She goes to work, and I finish with him and get him to daycare. Straight to work for me (about 0730/7:30). I come home about the same time she gets home with him. This is about 4:00pm / 1600.

No sports or anything yet. We are talking about them but nothing yet. During the week, the wife runs 2x a week after we get home. I do dinner. We spend time with the kiddo. In bed by 8:30. I really don't want to try (late) night workouts and then early am workouts.


Thank you.
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Re: Scheduling help - how fit it all in? [prefersdirt] [ In reply to ]
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My advice would be to drop the strength training and incorporate it as part of you training. Running hills, low cadence/big gear cycling... Maybe some core before you go to bed at night, but otherwise you are wasting valuable time that could be spend on the sport.

____________________________________________________

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Re: Scheduling help - how fit it all in? [prefersdirt] [ In reply to ]
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Not going to get into specifics on your schedule, but some general thoughts as somebody who's been in a similar position to you (my kids are a bit older now, my wife trains most days and also works, and I have a fairly full-on job):
- You can't fit it all in! You have to prioritise and if life priorities mean your tri training is sometimes compromised that's fine.
- If the sporting priority is triathlon and you only have limited time to train, then drop the lifting. I think lifting has a place in a triathlon schedule if you have lots of time to train all 3 sports and can still fit in time to lift, but not so much if you're already quite limited on the amount of SBR you can do. Running 5-6 times per week is going to help your triathlon a lot more than running 3x and lifting 2-3x. If you want to lift for non-triathlon reasons (maintaining muscle mass as you get older, looking good on the beach, etc) then go for it, just be aware it's not helping your SBR and by restricting the time you spend doing SBR it's actually hurting it
- Very useful to be able to train at home while your wife is out running and your son is sleeping. So if you haven't already, get yourself whatever out of bike trainer, treadmill, swim cords, vasa trainer, TRX, etc you can fit in and afford
- In similar vein, any training you can do with your son is a bonus. At 4 I had our eldest competent enough on a bike that we could go to the local park and she'd cycle 5 miles while I ran (followed by hot chocolate or ice cream depending on the time of the year).
- Bricks and other combined sessions are your friend. Even if it's just a mile or 2 of running off a bike it all helps to get the mileage up. A good chunk of training time is taken up by getting changed, showered, etc so once you're in your kit and sweaty you need to cram in as much as you can
- Intensity is also your friend, particularly on the bike and swim where you can do a lot of intensity with relatively low injury risk. If you haven't already, get yourself a power meter (and/or an indoor smart trainer) to make sure you're getting the most out of every bike session
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Re: Scheduling help - how fit it all in? [cartsman] [ In reply to ]
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Thank you for the long reply. I've embedded some answers and more information. I tried to look at a 12 to 14 day training block and my mind just broke. So back to the 7 day cycle.

cartsman wrote:
Not going to get into specifics on your schedule, but some general thoughts as somebody who's been in a similar position to you (my kids are a bit older now, my wife trains most days and also works, and I have a fairly full-on job):
- You can't fit it all in! You have to prioritise and if life priorities mean your tri training is sometimes compromised that's fine.
- If the sporting priority is triathlon and you only have limited time to train, then drop the lifting. I think lifting has a place in a triathlon schedule if you have lots of time to train all 3 sports and can still fit in time to lift, but not so much if you're already quite limited on the amount of SBR you can do. Running 5-6 times per week is going to help your triathlon a lot more than running 3x and lifting 2-3x. If you want to lift for non-triathlon reasons (maintaining muscle mass as you get older, looking good on the beach, etc) then go for it, just be aware it's not helping your SBR and by restricting the time you spend doing SBR it's actually hurting it

The main reason for the lifting has been to help with the mountain biking - since my focus is Xterra. Several races with 15 miles of ROUGH terrain my upper body was toast! Plus, having some raw strength would be nice for things like working livestock (family farm) and bringing in deer.

cartsman wrote:
- Very useful to be able to train at home while your wife is out running and your son is sleeping. So if you haven't already, get yourself whatever out of bike trainer, treadmill, swim cords, vasa trainer, TRX, etc you can fit in and afford

KK trainer and a treadmill are at home. I am a very long time TrainerRoad user and have stayed with virtual power (money has gone into other things). No room left in the pain cave for weights or even TRX -- would be nice. YMCA is <10 minutes away so that, while is time to get there/back, is not too major. Master's swim is the bear as it is 30 minutes away. But I need the coach on deck.

cartsman wrote:
- In similar vein, any training you can do with your son is a bonus. At 4 I had our eldest competent enough on a bike that we could go to the local park and she'd cycle 5 miles while I ran (followed by hot chocolate or ice cream depending on the time of the year).

I am hoping he takes to the bike. Last summer, so days he did; others he did not. He did NOT take to the balance bike at all. Hated it. He now also has one with training wheels -- that was going better before winter hit. I would really like to do like you described.


cartsman wrote:
- Bricks and other combined sessions are your friend. Even if it's just a mile or 2 of running off a bike it all helps to get the mileage up. A good chunk of training time is taken up by getting changed, showered, etc so once you're in your kit and sweaty you need to cram in as much as you can
- Intensity is also your friend, particularly on the bike and swim where you can do a lot of intensity with relatively low injury risk. If you haven't already, get yourself a power meter (and/or an indoor smart trainer) to make sure you're getting the most out of every bike session

In the midst of SweetSpot base on TR right now. Running has me following a different plan but does include the intensity factor.

At the end of the day, this is a hobby. The hardest part is getting the plan done so then I can just implement it.

Thank you again for the reply. It is appreciated.
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Re: Scheduling help - how fit it all in? [prefersdirt] [ In reply to ]
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No gym or pool for lunch workouts?

Consider bricks for the weekdays if you can only get 1 workout a day in.
Brick 30 min of each - swim/bike, swim/run, run/bike
On days you can get an AM and PM, do it.
I switched my long runs to Fridays and split it. Run AM and over lunch and on big days, finish up after work.
Long bikes on weekend day that doesn't run into kid activity.
Strength can be a quick 15 minutes after a bike or run or used as a brick mix in.

Lots of ways to skin a cat... is that saying PC any more?

I don't think I saw what distance you are working towards? Full IM vs Olympics is very different.

Ryan
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Re: Scheduling help - how fit it all in? [TriJayhawkRyan] [ In reply to ]
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TriJayhawkRyan wrote:
No gym or pool for lunch workouts?

Nope. My gym is about 30-45 minutes (traffic dependent) each way. Nothing closer. Wish I could.

TriJayhawkRyan wrote:

I don't think I saw what distance you are working towards? Full IM vs Olympics is very different.

Xterra is the focus -- so figure Olympic with non-standard distances. :)

Thanks. And yes, this cat needs to be skinned multiple ways -- hence asking here on ST.

Did a recovery swim vs lifting today. Legs feel better because of it.
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Re: Scheduling help - how fit it all in? [prefersdirt] [ In reply to ]
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Time management is key. Do a time audit of your day. Most people waste a lot of time without realizing it. 15 minutes here, 15 minutes there. Identify those times in your own day then see where you have flexibility to move your daily responsibilities around. Then youll realize you can do a 75 minute workout instead of 45 min at a given time of day or you can fit in a 40 min run for example in a lot where you thought you had no time. Its not easy and you gotta be honest with yourself but chances are youre wasting time somewhere. Just matters how bad you want it.
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Re: Scheduling help - how fit it all in? [prefersdirt] [ In reply to ]
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I’m in a somewhat similar situation - 2 and 5 yr old kids. I try to be in bed by 9-9:30 and get at least 6 hours of sleep. Sleep averages out to a bit over 7 hrs/night, but there are generally two mornings a week where I’m up around 3:30 instead of the usual 4:30 - this gets in an extra two hours or so a week.

I also do a lot of double bike/run workouts that I wouldn’t classify as brick workouts. On Tuesday and Thursday mornings I generally do a 1:15-1:30 Zwift bike ride/race followed by 30-45 min on the treadmill, but this is just to be able to fit things in as there’s no time at lunch (I’m a teacher) or after school/work, as that’s kid/family time.

I’ve also cut out any TV watching other than on the trainer or treadmill. This helps with an earlier bedtime for both my wife and I.


Blog: http://262toboylstonstreet.blogspot.com/
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Re: Scheduling help - how fit it all in? [prefersdirt] [ In reply to ]
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You’ll have to partially find your own muse but some of what has worked for me...

I get up at 4. I hate it, it makes me sad, but it gives me time.

My crock pot makes meals for me, and leaves leftovers for a quick day.

Shopping at BJ’s of other warehouse. You save money and it doesn’t take all that much longer than the grocery store. Now you only have to go every couples weeks.

We have a YMCA membership. Now granted our girls are much older at 10, and 11. But when we go to the Y they play in the small pool, we train in the big one.

I still lapped everyone on the couch!
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Re: Scheduling help - how fit it all in? [Jloewe] [ In reply to ]
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Also there’s what I call “dead time” and then there’s “down time”

Down time is what we all think it is. When there’s nothing to do. It’s probably when most of us are working out or watching tv.

Dead time... it’s similar to dead air on the radio. There’s nothing there for a short while. My example of dead time is after dinner on Sunday. I’ve already done my workout, already eaten, and let my stomach settle. Prob sent the brat to bed. So it’s around 8:30 maybe 8:45. Walking dead comes on at 9. Other than watch the episode I already saw last week there’s not a great deal I can do. So I make a salad for lunch, or get my crap ready for the next day. Maybe wash a couple of the more important dishes. Identify dead time and make that chore time.

I still lapped everyone on the couch!
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Re: Scheduling help - how fit it all in? [prefersdirt] [ In reply to ]
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Do I understand correctly that your gym is 30-45 minutes away? Is this one way? That seems to be a huge time waster right there. You could do your workout in that time. Unless you need to do some massive weight why don't you do this @ home. You don't need to spend a ton of get some dumbells 10's and 20's a bar and couple plates and maybe a stability ball (less than $100 bucks on craigslist or the like). Additionally, have someone who know what they are doing build you a program that utilizes your body weight against you for some exercises.

This will save you a ton of time if you are just looking to build some strength but not get huge. Also, not sure what your work is but I am often at my desk. ( I am a mountain biker as well). Squishy ball for wrist strength, resistance band for leg extension, even some dumbells when on the phone :)

Good luck and it does get easier when they can drive!
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Re: Scheduling help - how fit it all in? [Calamityjane88] [ In reply to ]
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Calamityjane88 wrote:

Don't waste time watching TV. If you're watching any TV, you're not allowed to complain about needing more time.

The only TV I watch is with my son. Or as a family (we watched Monsters, Inc. this weekend). Shoot, I can barely watch anything while riding or running inside. Just not interested anymore.
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Re: Scheduling help - how fit it all in? [yikes] [ In reply to ]
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yikes wrote:
Do I understand correctly that your gym is 30-45 minutes away? Is this one way? ...

This will save you a ton of time if you are just looking to build some strength but not get huge. Also, not sure what your work is but I am often at my desk. ( I am a mountain biker as well). Squishy ball for wrist strength, resistance band for leg extension, even some dumbbells when on the phone :)

Good luck and it does get easier when they can drive!

The 30-45 minutes one way is from work to the gym. Traffic mostly. From home: 5-7 minutes. (15 minutes to work in am from home). That is why nothing at lunch. Perhaps in the spring I can run over lunch. Depends on how stinky I get and if others around me get offended (no showers).

Work is often at a desk.

I will be looking at bodyweight exercises. Maybe not less time in themselves, but able to be put in without going anywhere (hence less time overall).

He already drives the ATV. Before I know it, he will want to drive the tractor! (I learned to drive a stick that way when I was barely heavy enough to engage the clutch).
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Re: Scheduling help - how fit it all in? [prefersdirt] [ In reply to ]
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One thing you could try is reducing your run frequency and supplementing with additional swim workouts. That can work (not negatively impact your running performance) if you already have a decent run fitness base. Additional swimming will help build your aerobic fitness (which will benefit your run) and have the added benefit of not being as hard on your body as running, which can allow you to add more intensity for cycling and lifting (or recover better from those activities).
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Re: Scheduling help - how fit it all in? [prefersdirt] [ In reply to ]
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prefersdirt wrote:

The 30-45 minutes one way is from work to the gym. Traffic mostly. From home: 5-7 minutes. (15 minutes to work in am from home). That is why nothing at lunch. Perhaps in the spring I can run over lunch. Depends on how stinky I get and if others around me get offended (no showers).

Work is often at a desk.

I will be looking at bodyweight exercises. Maybe not less time in themselves, but able to be put in without going anywhere (hence less time overall).

He already drives the ATV. Before I know it, he will want to drive the tractor! (I learned to drive a stick that way when I was barely heavy enough to engage the clutch).


Wait? You live 15 minutes from work, and you DONT workout at lunch (but, could)?

Commute workouts, lunch workouts.

There are several threads around here for how to cleanup without access to a shower. Get a fan for your office to help cool down, dry shower dust, wipes, etc.

I used to live 15 minutes from work (8 miles). That was the easiest ever for getting workouts in without specific "workout time". Run to/from work, bike to/from work. Bike to Work, run home. Run back the next day, and bike home. Run at lunch. All those workouts disappear into the woodwork of daily life. 2-a-days become the norm...3-a-days is no big deal. A couple days a week I would extend the commute one direction or the other, and get in a longer run or ride.

You just have to solve the how to clean-up-at-work-without-a-shower problem.
Solve the darkness problem. headlamps, bike lights, lighted vests.
Solve the cold problem. Lots of layers and options.

I use stretch chords at home for strength training, as well as lots of bodyweight stuff. The best part about those is that they take up ZERO space when not in use. They come in some pretty STOUT resistances, too.

Stretch cords can also be used to get some dryland swim training done. I'm using them 2x per week (usually). I setup a metronome on my phone at either 55bpm (recovery swim) or 60bpm (fast swim) and do something like 20x45s (20s) to simulate swimming 50's. I use a tabata time app on my phone to setup the intervals.

Recy: 15x45s (20s) @55spm using green rubber. roughly 750y/m @ easy pace.
Hard: 20x45s (20s) @60spm using black (or red) rubber. Roughly 1000y/m @ 200sprint pace.

You can double the interval to simulate 100s or something else. I keep it pretty simple, just as a way to keep the muscle memory "current". Its also easier to focus on Catch and Pull technique without worrying about breathing/balancing, kicking, etc. Not as a substitute for your pool swims, but as a supplement to get more frequency without pool-overhead.
Last edited by: Tom_hampton: Jan 21, 19 11:51
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Re: Scheduling help - how fit it all in? [Tom_hampton] [ In reply to ]
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Tom_hampton wrote:

You just have to solve the how to clean-up-at-work-without-a-shower problem.

Baby wipes and dry shampoo. Extra set of any other toiletries that you use (deodorant, etc) kept in your desk. Also ALWAYS keep a clean pair of socks/underwear in your desk drawer.

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Re: Scheduling help - how fit it all in? [Dr_Cupcake] [ In reply to ]
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Dr_Cupcake wrote:


Baby wipes and dry shampoo. Extra set of any other toiletries that you use (deodorant, etc) kept in your desk. Also ALWAYS keep a clean pair of socks/underwear in your desk drawer.


That's pretty much what I do, also. I keep a towel at work, also...and bring a new washcloth each day in the summer. We do have an enclosed bathroom...not just the standard public-stall-variety. So, I can go in there and cleanup.

I have a miniature tornado fan in my office to blow cool air on me.

I run year round...including July and August here in Dallas. I've done long runs in 105F, and still managed to not scare the entire office away (the weak ones needed to go somewhere else, anyway).
Last edited by: Tom_hampton: Jan 21, 19 12:48
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Re: Scheduling help - how fit it all in? [Tom_hampton] [ In reply to ]
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Tom_hampton wrote:
prefersdirt wrote:

The 30-45 minutes one way is from work to the gym. Traffic mostly. From home: 5-7 minutes. (15 minutes to work in am from home). That is why nothing at lunch. Perhaps in the spring I can run over lunch. Depends on how stinky I get and if others around me get offended (no showers).

Work is often at a desk.

I will be looking at bodyweight exercises. Maybe not less time in themselves, but able to be put in without going anywhere (hence less time overall).

He already drives the ATV. Before I know it, he will want to drive the tractor! (I learned to drive a stick that way when I was barely heavy enough to engage the clutch).


Wait? You live 15 minutes from work, and you DONT workout at lunch (but, could)?

Commute workouts, lunch workouts.

There are several threads around here for how to cleanup without access to a shower. Get a fan for your office to help cool down, dry shower dust, wipes, etc.

I used to live 15 minutes from work (8 miles). That was the easiest ever for getting workouts in without specific "workout time". Run to/from work, bike to/from work. Bike to Work, run home. Run back the next day, and bike home. Run at lunch. All those workouts disappear into the woodwork of daily life. 2-a-days become the norm...3-a-days is no big deal. A couple days a week I would extend the commute one direction or the other, and get in a longer run or ride.

You just have to solve the how to clean-up-at-work-without-a-shower problem.
Solve the darkness problem. headlamps, bike lights, lighted vests.
Solve the cold problem. Lots of layers and options.

I use stretch chords at home for strength training, as well as lots of bodyweight stuff. The best part about those is that they take up ZERO space when not in use. They come in some pretty STOUT resistances, too.

Stretch cords can also be used to get some dryland swim training done. I'm using them 2x per week (usually). I setup a metronome on my phone at either 55bpm (recovery swim) or 60bpm (fast swim) and do something like 20x45s (20s) to simulate swimming 50's. I use a tabata time app on my phone to setup the intervals.

Recy: 15x45s (20s) @55spm using green rubber. roughly 750y/m @ easy pace.
Hard: 20x45s (20s) @60spm using black (or red) rubber. Roughly 1000y/m @ 200sprint pace.

You can double the interval to simulate 100s or something else. I keep it pretty simple, just as a way to keep the muscle memory "current". Its also easier to focus on Catch and Pull technique without worrying about breathing/balancing, kicking, etc. Not as a substitute for your pool swims, but as a supplement to get more frequency without pool-overhead.

I would commute to increase training but I am the one that takes my son to daycare. No way would I take him in a bike trailer on the roads we would have to use. I get worried on parts of them -- and I used to ride in Los Angeles. I also pick him up a few times a week.

Right now it is -10F. No way I am running outside at lunch. I frequently work through most of lunch in order to make up time (pay) that is missed by my shortened days (late in w daycare/ earlier out to pick him up/spend time w family).

When it warms up, I will definitely look at running at lunch. I can bike commute when school is out and my wife is off for 8 weeks.

Excuses i know -- just stating what the obstacle is right now.

The specifics on use of bands is great. Gives me a starting point to look seriously into them.

Thank you
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Re: Scheduling help - how fit it all in? [prefersdirt] [ In reply to ]
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At 4 years old do you have a stroller that you or your wife can push while running? I turn the hotspot on my phone and my daughter will watch her Ipad as I run. I cant do any long runs with her as she gets ants in her pants, but she will last 45 minutes. Also, I would never want to push a stroller for a long run anyways.

Check the local high schools. MWF I have a high school near me that has lap swimming 11:45 to 1pm. I have been doing this since August/September and has been working well.

You mentioned watching monster Inc together. I sometimes bring my trainer upstairs and do my workout with the fam while we are watching TV. As long as they aren't watching lord of the rings or Star wars, the movie is probably 1h15min long.

I sometimes get a short lifting workout in during bath time. I put the baby monitor on the counter after the washing is done and head to the basement while they play in the tub. Video monitor and I can talk to them through the monitor if they start to yell at each other.

I do the same as someone else mentioned. My daughter has gymnastics once a week for 2 hours. I drop her off and then go for a run, but doesn't sound like you are quite there yet.
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Re: Scheduling help - how fit it all in? [prefersdirt] [ In reply to ]
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its a lot easier with one kid than multiple! when I did my Ironman training last year, I ended up with a job change that had me commuting 2 hours each way, instead of the 20 minutes I was used to. normal schedule was as follows, getting up around 4:30-4:45 each day

Mon Off
Tues: bike am / run after work
Weds: swim am
Thurs: bike am / run after work
Fri: swim am
Saturday: long bike/ short run
Sunday: long run

Saturdays were fun when our kids had to be in separate places by 11:00am, meaning I had to be done, eat, cleaned and off by 10:30. didn't always get the brick run in and never did it during the week. occasional strength training when at home watching TV with my wife. its hard to get it all in sometimes. it was hard getting home after running at 8:30 and barely see my kids before they go to bed and have enough time to re-pack my next morning workout stuff before falling asleep.
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Re: Scheduling help - how fit it all in? [BabaBooey] [ In reply to ]
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Just a short note to say Thank you to everyone for the suggestions. They are all being looked at. I have stopped the lifting for now (though I DO miss it) and am focusing on the rest. Watching time management and trying to get things rearranged to simplify life and open other training opportunities.
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