Become a Member

Get access to more than 30 brands, premium video, exclusive content, events, mapping, and more.

Already have an account? Sign In

Become a Member

Get access to more than 30 brands, premium video, exclusive content, events, mapping, and more.

Already have an account? Sign In

Brands

Training

Crowie’s Top Tips For Swim, Bike And Run

Three-time Kona champ Craig Alexander shares his top tips to help age groupers get stronger in each discipline of triathlon.

For access to all of our training, gear, and race coverage, plus exclusive training plans, FinisherPix photos, event discounts, and GPS apps, sign up for Outside+.

Swim

Get strong in the water! Alexander incorporates a lot of paddle work into his swimming because, as he says, strength is really important in the open water. “You have people all over you, you’re making right- and left-hand turns, you have to start and stop, your momentum is constantly being broken,” he says. “I think being strong can have a big impact.”

RELATED: 3 Swim Strength Training Exercises

Bike

“Strength is the basis for building speed, especially in the longer-distance races. The second half of the bike ride in longer races is not about going quick; it’s about not slowing down. It’s not just about muscular strength, but about aerobic strength. You have to hold your pace at threshold—or close to it—for a long period of time.”

To tackle this in training, do some low-cadence work that will improve your ability to turn gears, Alexander says. “For Ironman racing, you need to do two types of interval work. Longer, sustained efforts—10-, 15-, 30-minute efforts—and VO2max efforts. You need the ability to go very fast for a short period of time, recover, and then do it again because that kind of work helps to build your threshold speed as well.”

RELATED: 4 “Big Gear” Cycling Workouts To Build Leg Strength

Run

“Technique is the most important in the run because it comes last,” Alexander says. “That’s where you’re going to be the most susceptible to fatigue. Again, it’s not about going fast; it’s about not slowing down. A great way to hold your pace is to have efficiency. If you look at the great Ironman runners, they look like little robots. Every runner has different nuances to their technique, but generally speaking they’re strong throughout the race.”

RELATED – Dispatch: Lessons Learned From Crowie