How to Regain Fitness For Triathlon – Part 3

I am now 3 weeks into my journey of - How to Regain Fitness for Triathlon.  On the 1st of September I stood on the scales and weighed 84.7kg, my heaviest weight ever. My previous blogs on this are at

Weight Loss

Today I was 81.7kg which is exactly where I want to be.  Losing 3kg in 3 weeks is progress I am happy with.  The goal is to continue at the same rate and get back to a race weight of around 70-72kg.

Even losing 3kg I can start to feel the difference especially when I'm running. Being used to racing at 71-74kg for triathlon and 68-70kg as a runner, weighing over 80kg has been tough for me to get used to.

However, I only have myself to blame for putting on the weight over the last 3 years. Getting into the bad habit of making excuses around training and diet.  The initial 30 day challenge of doing 100 chin ups and 200 push ups every day was about reversing that habit of making excuses.

There have been days where I didn't want to do the chin ups and push ups including leaving it to 9pm one night. However, I am pleased to say I haven't missed a day.  As a result that new habit of committing to the goal and ticking it off each day on the wall calendar is helping me with other areas of my training.

I have been more disciplined with completing the training plan and eating a healthier diet.  Seeing the weight come down, feeling stronger and the simple pleasure of marking another day on the calendar all help me adopt better routines and habits.  This is the cornerstone I believe, of long term success.  Effective daily habits and routines.


In terms of my training the past 3 weeks have been between 10-14 hours across swim, bike, run and the daily strength set.  After each session I give it a RPE (rate perceived exertion) out of 10 and comment on how I felt.  To ensure I am able to absorb the training and build my aerobic capacity, approximately 85% of my total training time is at an RPE of 5-7/10.  The remaining 15% is at an RPE of 8-9/10.

Nearing 50, not having trained properly for 3 years and wanting to regain a high level of fitness the first goal is to re-build my aerobic capacity again.  That foundation of aerobic conditioning underpins the training process. This allows me to recover better, be more consistent and get a better adaptation from the hard high intensity based interval sessions.

What I am doing is know as Polarised Training. This is my guiding principle when it comes to endurance sports. You can read more about it in a previous blog

Whilst I am making progress it doesn't mean it has been linear.  Some days I have been tired, sore and questioning why I'm doing this.  While the habits and routines keep me going I also have a strong connection and purpose to why I am doing it. I do want to race again but it is more about wanting a long, healthy and content life.

Part of that means challenging myself consistently. Moving out of my comfort zone, being healthy as I get older and enjoying my life.  We only have one life and it goes by in a flash. I don't want to look back with regret knowing I let poor excuses get the better of me. This leads me to having a feeling on contentment and being happy with my life.

The How to Regain Fitness for Triathlon journey is another one of those challenges.  I am out of my comfort zone frequently.  But, when I get another day done it gives me a great sense of satisfaction and a desire to continue.

About Mark

Mark is one of Australia's most experienced and knowledgeable triathlon coaches. With over 25 years experience coaching at all levels from kids, youth, adult and elite professional athletes across the World. He loves seeing people change their lives through triathlon.

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