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Correct ways of tapering

Can anybody advise on the correct way to taper for a sprint event.

I've been following my first serious trainingplan for the last 10 weeks (up to 15 training sessions per week).
But i'm worried that I won't taper properly.
My plan states to taper for 10 days, with sessions of EASY swim, run and bike. But i'm concerned that i'll get paranoid about my fitness levels and still push it hard during the sessions.

Any advice on the best ways to approach this.
I don't want to ruin all the hard work done so far.



  • hussler.hussler. Posts: 390
    I dont taper for a sprint....however if your a newbie then train as normal until a couple of days out then have a day off with some easy efforts on swim or a 30mins easy spin and 10 min easy jog the day before...

    10 days is far too long for a taper for a sprint.... I only taper for 5 days leading into a Half IM.....

    Im doing the FGS Sprint this sunday here is my week

    Monday - 45 min very easy run covered 5.5miles (as I raced last weekend too)
    Tuesday - 2hour Swim set
    - Anaerobic Turbo session (Avg HR was 180)
    Wednesday - 90min Level 3 Run (13miles)
    Thursday - 2 hour Swim
    - Sprint session on turbo
    Friday - 2hour Swim set
    Saturday - 1hour Swim set followed immediately by...
    - 6 x 1km Hill rep seated Max effort in a big gear
    - 90 min race pace run
    Sunday - FGS Sprint (750m, 20k, 5k)
    Monday - 4.5hours Level 3 bike
    - 30 min Level 2 run
    Tuesday - 2hour swim
    - 45 min very easy run.

    then into the 2nd weeks training....

    It all does depend on your fitness levels and experience of Triathlon.
    If you do taper then make sure you do some short sharp bursts within your easy sessions just to keep your muscles ticking over nicely:)

    Above all else Enjoy it!
  • gavinrigg06gavinrigg06 Posts: 176
    hussler. (remembered the .) Do you work or have a wife ???

    If so you are a lucky man !!!
  • md6md6 Posts: 969
    Not much i can add to what Hussler. has said but as more of a newbie than Hussler. I thought i would shame my (limited) experience. For my tri last weekend I trained as usual up to the wendnesday then on thursday lessen the time but keep the intensity, so instead of my usual cycle commute home followed by an hours run/hill reps on the bike, i did the commute as usual then went for a half hour tempo run. Friday, either rest (my pool closes early on friday so i can't always get in there) or half hour swim including at least once through the distance for the race at race pace, then 10 mins on the bike to get the legs ticking over. Saturday i did nothing although i did spend 3 hours in the garden cutting back a tree so that might count as something?

    Hope that helps
  • hussler.hussler. Posts: 390
    Ha Ha Yeh I have both! Fortunately both are very supportive of my quest for stardom on the Triathlon circuit....

    When Im having a bad day/week Mrs Hussler gives me a good stern talking to and gets me out training etc. and supports me at 90% of races....oh and makes me protein loaded flapjack.....yummy
    I work as an Aircraft Engineering (weapons) Instructor in the RAF, so when I am not teaching Im free to train and whenever I have a race planned they give me free time off to do it.... One of the perks of the Armed Forces...

    Sounds a good way of tapering there!
  • gavinrigg06gavinrigg06 Posts: 176
    hussler. shows the difference between the RAF and Army, when I was in, I couldn't even get time off work for a Regimental football match !!!
  • HarryDHarryD Posts: 425
    You shouldn't really need to taper for a sprint event if all you want to do is finish.

    If you want to be on peak form, this may be your A race, then some form of taper is required. Strangely enough the fitter you are and the more consistent & intense your training the greater a taper is needed. Rest & recovery are as important as training.

    Assuming you've been training seriously then a two week taper is advisable. The thing to remember is to reduce the volume of training but maintain it's intensity. So 2 weeks before your race reduce the volume to about 80% of what you have been doing & then 1 week before to about 60%. Include your race in the weekly volumes. For example if you do a weekly endurance run of 80 minutes reduce it to 64 min then 48 min, if your swim session includes say 15 x100m hard then reduce to 12 then 9.

    Reduce the intesity & your body will switch off. Reduce the volume & your body will gain the oomph, speed & strength you've been training for.

    If you have only recently started training - say you are following one of those "6 week to triathlon success" programmes that seem to abound - then you may as well keep training up to the day before as the training benefit will outweigh the taper benefit.

    Have a great race
  • trudgertrudger Posts: 61
    Hi, thanks for the advice,

    This is my first year of taking it seriously, after a couple of years of just completing.
    I've been following a quite intensive 13wk programme which has really shown great improvement in my times/weight and stamina. So I just wanted to make sure I didn't screw things up by not tapering correctly.

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