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The Triathlete's Training Bible

4.06  ·  Rating details ·  1,380 Ratings  ·  71 Reviews
This new edition of The Triathlete's Training Bible covers all of the specialized training needs of triathletes, including completely updated nutrition, recovery, and weight training information. The book also contains seasoned advice on the mental aspects of training. Author Joe Friel shows how to achieve greater fitness by examining personal strengths and weaknesses, and ...more
Paperback, Second Edition, 368 pages
Published February 9th 2004 by VeloPress (first published 1998)
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Aug 03, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, fitness
I was thinking about runners this morning. The way they look. The way they move.

I don’t mean the champions of distance running. Despite the impossibility of their feats (26 miles at a 4:50 pace, 50 miles a day for 90 days, etc.), the competitors themselves srike me as very real, fundamentally human. Lank simians new-cast in nudity on the savannah, running a gazelle to exhaustion.

But then I think about one of these Olympic track stars. A guy like Usain Bolt. His whole life dedicated to the stag
This book is advertised as suitable for people of all levels, but it's definitely not meant for novices. It's too technical and comprehensive for the intimidated beginner, and none of the example training plans are suitable for those just starting out. The most helpful information for beginners is tucked away on a few pages in the final chapter. I'll keep this as a reference, but I now need to get a better novice guide.
Jul 31, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I don't think that this book will move from my "currently reading" list for a while.

I purchased it shortly after I registered for my first triathlon--the 2011 NYC Triathlon. I didn't crack it until I was on vacation in Jamaica last February, about my fourth rum-based cocktail in, sitting under an umbrella is a nice beach chair. Looking at the insane work out plan that basically says I needed to start training about seven years ago if I want any chance of finishing this race and will immediately
Timofey Peters
Jun 20, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Эту книгу стоит читать как следует тем, что готовится к соревнованиям по триатлону или дуатлону и стоит просмотреть тем, кто серьезно увлекается бегом, велосипедом или плаванием.
Very comprehensive, recommended to triathletes of all age and ability.
I found the self-assessment tests particularly useful, something I have not met in any other book for triathletes.
Sep 17, 2017 rated it it was ok
The better use of one's time would be to go for an extra Brick session. "Bible" also accurately describes the relevance of the book in the 21st century.
Douglas Lord
Mar 25, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Now in its third edition, you get the TTB when you’ve gotten serious about triathlon but before you go full-bore bug-eatin’ crazy for it. It can help you train for any distance and is most useful to newbies and self-trained athletes who want ‘traditional’ training advice (e.g., increased training volume, race-specific workouts). Friel introduces readers to the science of training and performance enhancement, the concept of training periodization, fitness assessment, and race-specific fitness tes ...more
Mar 25, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Goes deep into the nitty-gritty of training and designing a comprehensive schedule. A little bit difficult to use: I think I'd get the most out by sitting down with it and working up a full yearly plan, but that would be difficult without a previous read-through. So it's a read once, then refer to, kind of book. On the weak side, Friel relies too heavily on anecdotes over structured study (although he does not exclued the latter.) He's also too big on the paleo diet: many of the bottom-line reco ...more
Mar 10, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I don't have to finish reading this book to say it's the best book out there on triathlons. Might be a bit too complex for a newbie or a recreational athlete, but if you've been in the sport for awhile and want to improve without a coach, this seems to be the book to get. It's not full of boring basic stuff. I've read (or at least skimmed) a couple dozen books on triathlons and this is the first one I'm reading cover to cover. Lots of good info in here on periodization, peaking, creating an annu ...more
Nov 26, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: intermediate to experienced triathletes
Shelves: training
Provides the background behind his training philosophy, and details on building your own training plan.

The problem with the topic (which becomes evident with the book) is that there are so many options to choose from, depending on the athletes current fitness, future goals (Sprint vs Ironman), and key limiters. This book covers it all, which can make it difficult creating your own complete plan. For Ironman training, consider pairing this book with Going Long, which is written by an associate an
Benjamin Palmer
Mar 14, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I Haven't read any other training books so I have nothing to compare this to but it seems really, almost too meticulously well instructed way on how to self-coach yourself to triathlon success...or at least betterment. I'm gonna follow the plan that I laid out using the instuctions of the book and hope for the best (regardless of what I'm doing I should improve because I'm still within my first year of sport in general but hopefully I'll make solid gains)

my only complaint would
Henri Hämäläinen
Oct 25, 2011 rated it it was amazing
For a change I read something totally different than the business related books I've read lately. I'm in a transformation process from team sports and games towards endurance sports. So I wanted to go to the master source of endurance training, so I picked up Triathlete's Training Bible by Joe Friel. I found so many good recommendations on it, I had to give it a try. And I didn't regret a minute.

Book is about training for triathlon. But it's not only about triathlon as such. It gives so much goo
Dec 21, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Serious Triatheletes, or those that want to be.
This literally is, a bible for Triathlon Training. It covers everything from creating your training plan, race day preparation, workouts, information on supplements, diet breakdown - freaking everything.

As a newbie to multisports, I found this book to be very much oriented towards the "serious" athlete. And while the book did not "ignore" newbies, the information is most certainly relevant to those who are doing this for realsies.

So far, this book has been the MOST useful and comprehensive on
I just got back from the pool having done some of his drills to help my form and technique. I usually swim okay, but after some of the drills I felt I had some real finesse in the pool and was really gliding. I've been swimming for a couple of years, with a 1 year gap (2010-2011), so just getting re-started and using his tips has helped in my form and actually cutting through the water faster. I'm sure there are other books I can read that are more in depth about swimming, but this is fine as my ...more
Pierre Fortier
Dec 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Ex-marathonien et cyclotouriste. je nage régulièrement depuis quatre ans. Il ne m'en fallait pas plus pour tenter l'expérience du triathlon. Ce livre rédigé par un ex-triathlete et entraîneur de triathlètes me sert de guide pour atteindre mon objectif à l'aube de la mi-cinquantaine. Mon but? Ne pas m'entraîner inutilement et mettre à profit au maximum mes séances d'entraînement. Tel est la philosophie de cette "bible". Malgré le fait que c'est relativement technique et théorique, le livre est ex ...more
Helen Croydon
Oct 21, 2014 rated it really liked it
Good reference book and covers everything you can possibly imagine on the subject but is a bit too technical and a very dry read. If you don't memorise all the author's acronyms as they are mentioned, you'll loose him! Some parts are totally inaccessable, involving complex equations and graphs for 'periodization' to devise an annual training plan (which totally lost me!). Some advice, such as getting tested for your vo2 max or seeing a sports psychologist to increase motivation isn't accessible ...more
Apr 01, 2011 rated it liked it
It's helpful, but not quite for mere mortals. I designed a training program for myself based on this book, and it was waaay too ambitious (I burned out). This is not entirely the author's fault, but I *did* base my plan on his advice. When I tried following "canned" plans, they were actually much easier to follow through with, and I saw better gains. That being said, however, this book has good advice for people unfamiliar with triathlon. There's a piece of advice for just about any question you ...more
Apr 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a great reference book if you are taking on Ironman. Great information and overview on all aspects of triathlon. The quote that struck me was something to the effect of every day through training or recovery you are either improving, maintaining, or declining. I applied many things from this book last year. Great overview of the taper and explanation of why we taper. Pair this with listening to old Endurance Planet Podcasts of Ask the coaches ATC and Ask the Ultrarunner ATU and you'll be ...more
Jul 30, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: triathletes
This book discusses specific strategies for improving your swimming, cycling, and running skills. The book focuses on techniques, pit falls, and a comprehensive 1-year at a time plan, in which Friel encourages the reader to set specific goals, objectives, annual, weekly, and long term. The weekly log, which readers are encouraged to photocopy and utilize fits into the exercises and practical plans included therein.
Jack Huang
A great book for a semi-experienced runner who wants to get into the triathlon/ironman, like me. What benefits me the most is Joel Friel layouts the training/racing plan whole year long, then divide them into the different stages. It shocks me the first, since it doesn't look like there is any "off" time, then as I read through the book, I start nodding my head, maybe it's time to start taking it REALLY serious :)
Apr 12, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: triathletes
It's not necessary to read this book to be a recreational triathlete (like me). I'm sure it's essential for more serious athletes, or even anyone looking to make their own training programs , but I found it's extremely technical nature to be overwhelming at times. Nonetheless, if you pick it up for something specific, or move through it slowly, it is extremely educational and well worth the time.
Aug 11, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: triathletes
This is a great resource for triathletes. It'll get experienced athletes on the road to self-coaching, and it's a great resource for beginners to help understand how a training plan fits together.
Richard Allen
Depends what you want it for. I'm a fairly "casual" athlete and don't take it to seriously so this was a bit too much for me. This a really serious, scientific, in depth book for people who are very serious about their training. I imagine this would be brilliant for those people but it was a bit too much information for me
Feb 02, 2010 rated it really liked it
A really excellent resource for Intermediate Triathletes. I skipped over all the basic stuff, but looks like it would be useful if you are just getting started. The more advanced stuff gets you better acquainted with the chemical reactions in the body and enable better training and nutrition plans. It would be a good resource to have on hand and refer to.
Aug 08, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Triathletes
Again we have Mr. Friel, who is very comprehensive. Like I wrote for his "Going Long" book on training for Ironman races, if you can follow his training schedules, you will see results. Friel is a very experienced coach and athlete and his methods are proven. Even though this is a long and in-depth manual, I beleive it is a must-read for any up-and-coming Triathlete.
Richard Hoffman
Mar 17, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: triathlon
A great book for the "self trained" athlete. this book will change how you train, reduce injury and give you a GREAT base for future triathlete activities... It is technical but it is what everyone uses to succeed.

Scott Cox
Jan 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, sports
I read and used this book extensively when training for a short course triathlon a few years ago. The suggested structured and disciplined workouts were quite helpful in preparation. I strongly recommend reading this book if you are seriously contemplating entering a triathlon race.
Ben McIntire
Feb 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great book, great help, great coach! Joe Friel is a very helpful author to someone like me who is just getting started in triathlon. I did my first race last July, and it was a blast! I look forward to many more.
Jul 11, 2012 rated it it was ok
Shelves: nonfiction
I did use this as a bible to train for my triathlon, but the intended audience is very serious triathletes, not rookies like myself. It's about building a yearly training routine and weekly routines. The actual skill guides are an appendix at the end--they were the most helpful
This was by far the best book I've seen on triathlon training. It had some basic, introductory parts along with some quite technical, detailed sections. I wouldn't even bother with the other triathlon books out there. Everything you need is right here.
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“It is not a matter of how much you train, but of how you train. —RICK NILES, TRIATHLON COACH” 1 likes
“But there always have been, and probably always will be, five ingredients for success in sport: Purpose: Know exactly what your goal is. Passion: Have a burning desire to achieve it. Planning: Determine how you’ll go about achieving it. Perspiration: Work hard, following your plan to achieve it. Perseverance: Don’t let anything get in the way of achieving it.” 1 likes
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