Train smart to race fast

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This is off of a blog we found online but it seemed very helpful so we wanted to share.

Slow paddling won’t increase your speed, period. But train smart to race fast is possible.  Training should be based on your goals, of course. If the race distance will be ten miles or less, and if you’re racing to finish and have fun, then a simple training plan will work. Time will dictate what is possible.


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How many hours a week? Will there be weights, or ergo workouts, running, other? If paddling is it, then how many days? If you can do seven days, then consider this plan if there is a race on Saturday. Rest paddle day is Monday–hour and half: paddle working on stroke and technique, breathing and turns. Tuesday is interval day: one minute on, one minute off times four; two minutes on, two minutes off times two. Depending on race, do two longer intervals of either four or eight minutes in length–hour and half. These all should be done feeling uncomfortable or 70/80 percent. Wednesday is long distance or minimum two hours–this is not slug pace, but at 60/70 percent effort. You should be working on stroke. Thursday is pre-race rest day. One hour easy pace; more if race is just a training race. Friday is pre-race day. Hour and half with six, two-minute excels with HR at race pace.  Saturday is race day. Here’s the kicker. Two/three hours or less before race, do a thirty-minute ergo workout: run, bike, elliptical, other and elevate HR for ten minutes after a ten-minute warm-up at your race pace, then cool down for ten minutes. Sunday is a cool-down day, and for me another distance day.
 So, you can’t do seven, then do five, but never miss the pre-race day or the race kicker. Heart rate training works for me. My rest day paddles ranges from 105 to 120 bpm. Interval days range from 100 bpm to 150 bpm. Distance days are in the 120/30s for what ever distance. My race pace is 146-154 bpm with max as high as 180. Why do the kicker? It’s because you can go flat out from the start of the race without going into oxygen debt. Try it, you like it.
While I think slow paddling won’t make you fast, it’s needed as part of a training plan to keep training fresh and not boring. Some days it’s just nice to smell the roses. Have fun is the whole game. Smile.


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