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Training for Different Triathlons

Since 2014, John R. Nofsinger has served as the William H. Seward Endowed Chair in International Finance and professor of finance at the University of Alaska Anchorage. Outside of his professional duties, John R. Nofsinger competes in multiple types of triathlons, including sprint and Ironman.

The chief difference between different triathlon lengths is time, but that one difference changes countless other elements, such as training. Training for a sprint or an Olympic-distance triathlon will focus primarily on power, with only enough effort put into stamina training to get through less than an hour of each type of event. An Ironman, meanwhile, will require extensive training for stamina and overall fitness level, even for experienced athletes. Training taper time will also extend with the length of the triathlon itself.

Fueling the body also changes during a longer triathlon. The body needs fewer calories per hour for a sprint than an Ironman event, and prospective Ironman participants should work this element into their training as well, making sure to avoid overeating during training for short-distance triathlons and getting their bodies accustomed to eating on the bike for Ironman events.

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