The benefits of strength training are many, especially for us triathletes who have to be well versed in three different disciplines. The first sentences in the book sort of summaries it all up for us "Triathlon is an endurance sport, plain and simple. So why should you consider strength training a necessary part of a triathlon workout? The answer is simple, but it takes a complex explanation to put it all together. The short explanation is that strength training makes muscles stronger, and stronger muscles can perform longer at higher intensities before they fatigue."
"Strength Training for Triathletes" by Dr. Patrick Hagerman is a first of its kind strength and conditioning book targeted to triathletes. It takes the time to explain how and why we should incorporate strength training to improve our swim, bike, and run performance.
The book is pretty straight forward in the three sections is has (Strength Training Program Components, Program Preparation, Exercises). Section one explains the difference between endurance training and strength training and talks about how to incorporate it into your triathlon training schedule. The second section has information on the equipment you will need for training at home or at the club, how to select the exercises that will benefit you. It also provides example training programs based on your triathlon race distance. The final section in the book has the illustrated exercises explained with text instructions. It's broken up by upper and lower body exercises and then exercises specific to the swim, bike, and run. Most of the exercises in the book can be done in the comfort of your own home, but the book does have some exercises that requires equipment found at a gym.
Appendix A is pretty cool, it features a "Needs Analysis Visual Index" which describes various symptoms that you might experience and then recommends certain exercises to solve the problem.
The book is fairly easy to read and understand. This is not one of those books you pick up one day and start using the next day, you need to read the initial chapters for it to be of benefit to you. Hagerman keeps it simple with straight forward explanations. He even gives you very detailed number of sets and reps under the various training programs.
Overall, the book is great, a definite item to have within reach for your off-season or when training for your triathlon race. It would be cool if it came with a flip-book for the exercises so you could see the text and illustrations without actually having to hold the book while performing them. I would recommend this book to triathletes of all levels looking to improve their overall race performance.
The book was published by VeloPress in 2008 and features more than 150 illustrations. Get your copy of Strength Training for Triathletes from Amazon.
This was an un-solicited and an un-paid review of this product. The TRIJUICE rating scale goes from 1 to 5 with 1 being fair and 5 being good.