Athletes in their 50s need to carefully “pick their spots” in the season. They can train for high-level performance but cannot sustain the same levels of intensity or duration as younger athletes. You have to be clear on what your peak event is, and have a longer aerobic base phase followed by a shorter threshold-emphasis peaking phase.
Strength training also becomes more important after age 50. Lifting two or three times per week much of the year and doing a core strength and flexibility routine regularly is a good idea. There’s more need for recovery, and a minimum of two weeks out of every five should be dedicated recovery weeks.
Research out of Australia has shown that cycling performance declines less with age than swimming and running. (This is more pronounced at iron distance than at Olympic distance.) Good cycling fitness will help support a declining run split. If you can start the run feeling fresher, you are capable of running closer to your open run abilities.
FILED UNDER: Training