Working Paper Article Version 1 This version is not peer-reviewed

The Training Characteristics of Recreational-level Triathletes: Influence on Fatigue and Health

Version 1 : Received: 9 April 2021 / Approved: 12 April 2021 / Online: 12 April 2021 (14:08:27 CEST)

A peer-reviewed article of this Preprint also exists.

Falk Neto, J.H.; Parent, E.C.; Vleck, V.; Kennedy, M.D. The Training Characteristics of Recreational-Level Triathletes: Influence on Fatigue and Health. Sports 2021, 9, 94. Falk Neto, J.H.; Parent, E.C.; Vleck, V.; Kennedy, M.D. The Training Characteristics of Recreational-Level Triathletes: Influence on Fatigue and Health. Sports 2021, 9, 94.

Journal reference: Sports 2021, 9, 94
DOI: 10.3390/sports9070094

Abstract

Little is known about how recreational triathletes prepare for an Olympic distance event. The aim of this study was to identify the training characteristics of recreational-level triathletes within the competition period and assess how their preparation for a triathlon influences their health and their levels of fatigue. During the 6 weeks prior to an Olympic distance triathlon, and the 2 weeks after, 9 recreational athletes (5 males, 4 females) completed a daily training log. Participants answered the Daily Analysis of Life Demands Questionnaire (DALDA), the Training Distress Scale (TDS), and the Alberta Swim Fatigue and Health Questionnaire weekly. The Recovery-Stress Questionnaire (REST-Q) was completed at the beginning of the study, on the day before the competition, and at the end of week 8. Training loads were calculated using session-based rating of perceived exertion (sRPE). The data from every week of training was compared to week 1 to determine how athletes’ training and health changed throughout the study. No changes in training loads, duration, or training intensity distribution were seen in the weeks leading up to the competition. Training duration was significantly reduced in week 6 (p=0.041, d = 1.58, 95% CI = 6.9, 421.9), while the number of sessions was reduced in week 6 (Z=2.32, p=0.02, ES = 0.88) and week 7 (Z = 2.31, p=0.02, ES = 0.87). Training was characterized by large weekly variations in training loads and a high training intensity. No significant changes were seen in the DALDA, TDS, or REST-Q questionnaire scores throughout the 8 weeks. Despite large spikes in training load and a high overall training intensity, these recreational-level triathletes were able to maintain their health in the 6 weeks of training prior an Olympic distance triathlon.

Keywords

training loads; monitoring; illness; recovery; triathlon

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