Tri coach Phil Mosley offers up some simple workouts across all three disciplines for your sprint triathlon…

Top up your traning for sprint triathlon


In a sprint triathlon your legs will feel like concrete by the time you run. The only thing you can do to make this easier is practise. This is known as brick training, where you do more than one discipline back to back (normally bike and run). The key is to simulate your target race pace, but in short sections with plenty of recovery.

Try this:

Warm Up: 15 mins easy ride.

Main Set: Cycle at target race pace for 10 mins, followed immediately by a run at race pace for five minutes. Rest for three minutes, then do it again.

Warm Down: Five minutes easy jog.


The swim section of a sprint triathlon is potentially the most scary bit. If you’re a new or rusty swimmer, a course of one to one lessons is a great idea. Once you’ve grasped the basics of the stroke you can then train at pace.

Try this sample session at your local pool:

Warm Up: 10 mins easy swim, mixed strokes.

Main Set: 10x50m at target race pace with five to 10 seconds recoveries. Once you’ve got the hang of this you could progress to doing doing 6x100m with 15 seconds rests. Or 4x200m with 20-30 seconds rests.

Warm Down: Five minutes easy swim.

Top up your traning for sprint triathlon


Open water swimming is as much mental as it is physical. It’s an unnerving combination of dark cold water, weeds, fish, bubbles and flailing limbs. Worse still, there’s nothing to grab on to. Thankfully the more experience you get, the easier it becomes.

Grab a few mates and try an open water practice session like this:

Warm Up: 400m easy, slow swimming.

Main Set: 4x100m hard from a deep water start, swim close together, look up every 10 strokes, 30secs treading water recoveries.

Warm Down: 400m easy slow swimming.


One of the most effective and fun sessions you can do is a regular 5km race. Check out for details of free events near you. If you prefer to run solo, you should break your runs into sections and include some race pace efforts.

Here’s a good session that shouldn’t leave you too exhausted:

Warm Up: 15mins easy jog at chatting pace.

Main Set: Five lots of (run 2mins at 5km pace, walk 60 seconds).

Warm Down: Five minutes easy jog.


Training for the bike section of a sprint triathlon is a bit like training for a cycle time trial. The aim is to hold a consistently strong pace for anything from 30 to 60 minutes. Perhaps the best person to advise on this is Olympic cycling gold medallist Chris Boardman. One of his favourite time-trial workouts included 15,12 and eight minute blocks with 10 minutes recovery between each. Each block was done at a high intensity, but not maximally hard. He said his aim was maintain a consistent high pace without dying off.

There’s much more on triathlon advice in our triathlon training section…