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Lightweight hardgainer ectomorph training..?

Any suggestions?
I can't get any faster.
In Olympic (due to time constraints I can't go any longer), I'm good on the run (usually top 10% of AG), poor on the bike (bottom 40%), OK in the water (about 50-60%). Although it's fun overtaking all the people who overtook me on the bike when I'm running, i'm missing a trick here...
I have very good aerobic capacity, i went from sprint to 70.3 in my first season comfortably.
I can't put on weight no matter how hard I've tried (and I've tried, REALLY hard, in every way I've ever read/heard). So i just can't get faster on the bike, or really get much faster now in swim and run.
I don't think i'm aerobically limited. I did the NY marathon at almost the same average HR I do 10k's.
I think what i'm missing is strength and strength endurance so am considering quite drastically cutting back on the mileage to focus on these two. Has anyone done this? Does anyone have any other suggestions for pure ectomorph training?
I know this flies in the face of traditional training - specificity/base mileage etc - but I just don't think the majority of concepts for tri training are based on my body type.
Very interested to hear anyone's input.


  • Hi, have you tried speedwork reps with your running and cycling?
    With running, you could be doing 12x400m at level 9 on a scale of 1-10 with 90 seconds recovery. This means you will be working anaerobically (without oxygen) and this helps build speed. It sounds like you have good endurance. You could also try circuit type training, including squat thrusts, burpees, skipping, press ups, plank, squats, lunges - you do the exercises for 30 seconds at each station then move on to next exercise.
    I'm more into running than cycling and swimming and only done sprints and one olympic this year, therefore not really sure how to advise for swimming/cycling although I've read the same applies. I'm also ectomorph shape and have found the above workouts have helped get my times down for 5ks and 10ks over the last 6 months.
    Hope this helps!
  • Cheers Lanky I have worked in speed sets in a speed-phase previously with some perceptible gains definately, but nothing major (in comparible seasons I'd estimate a 5 minute gain over the full distance for having the speed work in there). I was using the Triahletes Training Bible pretty religiously (groan) during that period for the various phases. However I guess I was always ultra paranoid of speed work - problematic ITB - so quite possibly didn't go as hard as I could so might explain marginal gains. Your idea of circuits definately intersts me, it's pretty much what I'm thinking, along with earlier more pure strenght stuff, quite possibly using bands etc. Also ties in with one of the 220 articles this month. The one thing I'm generally trying to do is reduce the amount of energy I'm burning in the training relative to the specific benefit I'm getting (as an ectomorph), which is why the gym-work interests me. My theory is that the regular medium-long S/B/R I was doing were only giving me marginal gains (specifically for Olympic) and costing me too much in terms of strengh and strength endurance, where I would benefit more from retaining that "fuel" to allow further fast twich muscle conditioning. And having said all that, I'd probably be a lot more confident and capable of actually completing useful speed work after that targetted strength/strength endurance work as well towards peak! Happy days!
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