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People often ask what tapering week is or how I prepare for upcoming races. As I'm heading into my third IRONMAN 70.3 on Sunday in Calgary, I'm obviously an expert and decided to do a quick post. First off, the idea behind tapering is to rid yourself of the fatigue of the previous weeks training, while keeping your body primed and awake for when you call on it race day.

Now, a quick google search will provide any athlete with any number of tapering week options and strategies. While these are certainly good to read and understand why it is good to taper, if there is one thing that I have learnt it is that there is no prescribed formula. What works for you, may not work for someone else and often what worked for you one race may not work for the current race. This could be for a variety of factors - personal commitments, timing, workload, race distance, how you're feeling, etc.

With that in mind I thought I would lay out what my "tapering" week approach to IRONMAN Calgary 70.3. This pre-race week has been a bit different than usual as I am nursing an IT Band issue that has hampered my running and overall pre-race training regime. The end result is no running until race day and a little more swimming and biking than usual for a "tapering" week to compensate. Not much, but a little.

Monday

  • Rest day
  • Physio appointment with light needling session (not typical, but last minute assessment and treatment for IT issue)

Tuesday

  • Rest Day
  • Massage - loosen up those muscles!
  • Was feeling a little tender after needling and the massage and didn't want to push it.

Wednesday

  • Morning swim - easy 1200 meters. No drills just straight up laps at easy pace.
  • Afternoon bike - easy spin in the 1 to 1.5 hour range. Threw in an Edworthy Hill run for fun.
  • Evening stretching

Thursday

  • Morning stretching
  • Optional swim - going to see how I feel, if I go just 500-1000 meters, short interval drills of 25 easy, 25 sprint, 25 easy, 25 sprint
  • Afternoon bike - another easy spin in the 1 to 1.5 hour range to keep the legs loose. Alternating low and high cadence
  • Evening stretching

Friday

  • Morning Stretching
  • Registration Day!!!
  • Open water swim at Auburn Lake - put the wetsuit on and go for quick swim
  • Bike prep for drop off Saturday
  • Evening Stretching

Saturday

  • Morning stretching
  • Bike Drop off and Transition Station prep
  • No activity
  • Evening stretch
  • Early to bed!

Sunday

  • Race day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

That is it in a nutshell. So far I am on plan and feeling really good. Check back Friday for my nutrition strategy for race week.

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