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Triathlon Training during Medical School

ChymeofPassion

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Hello,

Throughout college I trained for and completed several triathlons; many of these events required 5-6 months training at 10-20 hours per week. I eventually want to complete a full Ironman triathlon, one of my life goals (did a few halfs in college). I am entering medical school this fall, and at the same time I want to use some money I've saved to buy a triathlon bike and take my racing to the next level. I don't want to regret this though, if I will have no time to train. Is this feasible? I would not start training till next Feb. anyways, so I would get acclimated to the medical school curriculum sans training regimen.
 
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bananafish94

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I trained and completed a marathon, basically from a novice level. I never put in anything close to a 20 hour week but definitely had some 10+ hour weeks. This was throughout some of my busiest sub-Is with super early mornings, studying for CK, etc. so it’s possible to fit it in. Obviously you have to be a little flexible. For example for marathons you have to do a weekly “long run” that can take a few hours and I generally only had one day off per week so that’s when I would do the long run even if the timing wasn’t perfect. And I’m sure the infrastructure for triathlon training is a little more complicated. Still I think it can certainly be done!
 

JSReed

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Late to the party but:

Just finished M1 and was able to maintain 8-12 hours a week depending on exam schedule (at least one every 14 days) while still doing above average. I stuck mostly to short course and halves, partially bc of time constraints (did one full pre-med school and was averaging upwards of 15h/w) and partially bc of personal preference. Honestly I feel like its super manageable. Obviously there are some weeks where you have to miss a session or whatever, but for the most part its just time mgmt. One of the EM PD's near me is in the ironman scene, she seems to think its pretty manageable during school years.

As time saving hacks, I'd recommend riding inside (I do 3/4 weekly rides inside, more efficient and way safer), making everything into a brick (i.e. instead of two-a-days, just doing them as one session to cut down on shower/re-grouping time), and maybe a handful of group training sessions if your into that. I also do my entire annual race calendar and training plan (down to the minute) during winter break, but....that's definitely not for everyone haha. Occasionally I'll pull out anki while I'm on the trainer, but only for easy rides. Just some things to look into.

I also bought a new TT bike this winter...right before covid. Ugh. What did you end up buying?
 

ChymeofPassion

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Late to the party but:

Just finished M1 and was able to maintain 8-12 hours a week depending on exam schedule (at least one every 14 days) while still doing above average. I stuck mostly to short course and halves, partially bc of time constraints (did one full pre-med school and was averaging upwards of 15h/w) and partially bc of personal preference. Honestly I feel like its super manageable. Obviously there are some weeks where you have to miss a session or whatever, but for the most part its just time mgmt. One of the EM PD's near me is in the ironman scene, she seems to think its pretty manageable during school years.

As time saving hacks, I'd recommend riding inside (I do 3/4 weekly rides inside, more efficient and way safer), making everything into a brick (i.e. instead of two-a-days, just doing them as one session to cut down on shower/re-grouping time), and maybe a handful of group training sessions if your into that. I also do my entire annual race calendar and training plan (down to the minute) during winter break, but....that's definitely not for everyone haha. Occasionally I'll pull out anki while I'm on the trainer, but only for easy rides. Just some things to look into.

I also bought a new TT bike this winter...right before covid. Ugh. What did you end up buying?
Thanks for your comment, I ended up getting a 2019 Cervelo P2 Rim 105! Nothing crazy, but way better than my road bike. That's awesome to hear, my 70.3 (IMOO 70.3) was just pushed to next year, aka I get to do two Halfs next year (I've only ever done one per year, because they just ruin my body, in a good way). Could you pm me, I have some questions and would love advice on transitioning from a half to a full, initial goal being the summer after M2.
 
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njtrimed

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Hello,

Throughout college I trained for and completed several triathlons; many of these events required 5-6 months training at 10-20 hours per week. I eventually want to complete a full Ironman triathlon, one of my life goals (did a few halfs in college). I am entering medical school this fall, and at the same time I want to use some money I've saved to buy a triathlon bike and take my racing to the next level. I don't want to regret this though, if I will have no time to train. Is this feasible? I would not start training till next Feb. anyways, so I would get acclimated to the medical school curriculum sans training regimen.
I had no problem training for triathlon during the preclinical years. Third year I ran two marathons; it’s always possible to run, but I couldn’t bike outside often (I have a trainer, but ugh!), and never could get to a pool or outside to swim. I was registered for a full IM during fourth year, but it was canceled due to covid. It’s absolutely possible to train for any distance tri during med school. During residency, I anticipate mostly intermediate course races; there will never be enough time for the necessary peak IM training.
 

JSReed

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I had no problem training for triathlon during the preclinical years. Third year I ran two marathons; it’s always possible to run, but I couldn’t bike outside often (I have a trainer, but ugh!), and never could get to a pool or outside to swim. I was registered for a full IM during fourth year, but it was canceled due to covid. It’s absolutely possible to train for any distance tri during med school. During residency, I anticipate mostly intermediate course races; there will never be enough time for the necessary peak IM training.
Some of the attendings I've trained with basically recommended switching to monosport during residency, working on whatever your weakness is, and then scaling back up once you become an attending. So guess I'm going to be hiding the bags under my eyes with goggle marks...
 
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AMEHigh

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I did marathons while in med school. Didn’t start doing triathlons until residency. So yes it’s 100% possible. No one studies 24/7 and that wouldn’t be healthy.

Training for an IM seems insane to me anyway whether you train in med school or when you’re established in your career working 50+ hrs/ wk with potential kids, so I’m sure it’s possible but that’s a hell no for me at any point in my life lol.
 

JSReed

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I did marathons while in med school. Didn’t start doing triathlons until residency. So yes it’s 100% possible. No one studies 24/7 and that wouldn’t be healthy.

Training for an IM seems insane to me anyway whether you train in med school or when you’re established in your career working 50+ hrs/ wk with potential kids, so I’m sure it’s possible but that’s a hell no for me at any point in my life lol.
There are def training plans out there averaging 10 hrs a week for an IM. I wouldn't necessarily trust them or do them....but they exist and have worked for people.
 
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