While triathlon is a fountain of youth for many, it’s important that the maturing triathlete doesn’t reapply the same training strategy year after year, decade after decade. With some adjustments to your annual plan, you can stay fit and fast into your 60s and beyond.
Many athletes can replicate the threshold training they did in their mid-30s through their early 40s. The biggest change is recovery time. The good news for the long-term athlete is that muscle memory—muscle familiarity that comes from repeating a motion—does not disappear with age, so experienced athletes can be more efficient than their younger counterparts with fewer lifetime training miles. Athletes can attain previous fitness levels with less threshold work so long as they can perform consistent, strong aerobic efforts.
Recovery weeks should take place every third week, and they need to provide a really good recharge. Increased focus on body maintenance through massage and stretching can also prolong an athlete’s high performance window.