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tapering for beginners

pro triathlete marlene the farmer tells

how you are so fit and rested possible at the starting line appears

The European triathlon season has started. After months of hard training, competition day is finally approaching. How do you ensure that you are as rested and fit as possible at the starting line on that important day? Tapering is an important part of the answer. You can do this
save a lot of time. A taper is a period of rest in which you prepare your body for a competition. You usually reduce the volume during this period by about 40-60 percent while maintaining intensity. This means that you don't just do zone 1-2 training, but you also add some tempos.

''less is more ''

1. listen to your body

It is extremely important to listen carefully to your body. If you are extremely tired, shorten a session a little further. If you're unsure whether you've done enough, log in to TrainingPeaks and view all the workouts you've completed over the past few weeks and months. Think of a mantra for yourself that helps you to trust that you are ready for top performance. Repeat this in moments of unrest.

2. tapering or training until the last moment?

It takes some getting used to when you see your weekly averages shoot down. Can you enjoy a taper? This varies enormously per athlete. Personally, I love a taper. The last weeks leading up to an important competition are full of long training days. You are constantly challenging yourself and regularly pushing yourself out of your comfort zone. I love the idea that the work is done and I can prepare for a competition. There is no better feeling for me than stretching out on the couch reading a book; rest in the knowledge that the work is done and that I can finally race again.

"Taping is a super personal process. There is no ' one size fits all' method. simply do what works for you ."

Marlene de Boer - Triathlete

care good for yourself

Two to three days before a competition, start stacking carbohydrates so that glycogen accumulates in your muscles. This is essential for delivering a good performance.

I make sure that I do not skip any meals during a competition week and that I eat and drink enough. I add electrolytes to my water and avoid eating excessively fatty products. The last 36 hours before a competition I only eat boiled rice with banana, jam, chicken or a boiled egg.

I actually never weigh myself right before a race. By eating a lot of carbohydrates, your body also retains fluid. This can cause an increase in weight. No reason to worry, you will lose this by the time you start the running part.

Can't figure it out yourself? Consider visiting a sports dietitian. They can help you make a schedule of what you can best eat in the days before your competition.

aches, fatigue and other ailments

That's part of it. Your body goes from training week after week to a period of more rest. Your body will recover more actively and the nervous system plays an important role in this. Sometimes in known weak spots, sometimes in new places.

It is important to be careful and not force anything. In most cases, everything disappears for me as soon as the starting dump goes off. For aches and pains, I often take a magnesium bath, loosen my muscles with a massage gun and do some extra stretching exercises.

more than only physical

mental preparation

A taper is not only there to physically prepare you for top performance, but the mental part is just as important. Charging my mental battery is super important to me. Finishing half or an entire triathlon demands a lot from you. The better you feel in your head, the more you are willing to suffer. Be kind to yourself in the days leading up to a competition so that you can push that little bit extra on your important day.

visualize your match

Because you train fewer hours, you have more time to sleep, stretch and prepare for your competition. It helps me enormously to make a plan in time for the day before the competition and of course the competition day itself. Reading the athletes guide helps me visualize the competition. An important part of this is thinking of different scenarios that can occur during the match. It really doesn't matter whether this is your first competition or whether you have more experience. Use the days before the race to prepare yourself.

important Not To Forget

The last night before a race is almost always short and restless. The start of an IRONMAN is very early and nerves can play a major role here. I now know from experience that if you have slept well the nights before, this is no problem at all to deliver a good performance.

Finally, it is important to test your material in time before a competition. This way you won't be faced with any surprises on the day itself. My advice is to first test the above advice in a less important match. Or if this is not possible, approach one of your training days as a competition. See what works or doesn't work for you. Don't forget that your competition is the icing on the cake after a period of hard work, even if everything doesn't go the way you wanted: enjoy and be proud of yourself!

will we see you at the finish?

will we see you at the finish?

Have you become enthusiastic after reading this blog and do you want to start triathlon?
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Tapering for Beginners