The Napster

swim, bike, run
January 30, 2017

D3 Staff


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As a coach and professional triathlete, I've been asked countless times throughout my career how to optimize training and what top performers do to excel. One of the most crucial yet often neglected aspects for maximizing gains is... taking naps! Despite the stigma, many pro athletes rely on napping for recovery, enabling them to tackle rigorous training schedules.

Triathlon is undeniably demanding, making proper daily recovery essential. Personally, I proudly embrace naps! Incorporating naps can transform a grueling week of training into consistently productive sessions. This habit distinguishes pro athletes' routines from amateurs', though it might not be explicitly noted in their training logs.

Napping isn't just a luxury; it's a performance secret used across various sports. Despite being underestimated or mocked by skeptics, what matters is the results it yields. Fortunately, I can structure my schedule to accommodate this crucial practice. Even if you have a busy life, carving out time for yourself and prioritizing rest can significantly benefit your body and mind.

Whether you're a pro or an amateur, adopt a professional mindset towards your training. Treat your performance like a business, investing in every aspect that enhances your training and racing. Instead of wasting time on non-essential activities, prioritize rest and recovery.

Investing in high-quality equipment is common, but don't overlook the importance of sleep—a powerful performance enhancer that comes for free. While training is crucial, scheduling specific rest periods is equally vital. Though you might face resistance from others, educate them on the benefits of power napping, backed by research.

Napping between training sessions offers numerous benefits, including inflammation control, faster recovery from training and injuries, immune system enhancement, improved mood, and better weight regulation. Incorporating naps can lead to better skin health and increased release of human growth hormone, aiding in recovery.

Personally, I cherish my Friday naps, which fit seamlessly into my routine:

5:45am – 7am: VO2 speed swim, followed by sauna.
7:40am: Breakfast.
9am – 12pm: 3-hour bike ride.
12:05pm – 12:40pm: Quick lunch, then nap.
12:40pm – 1:30pm: Nap.
1:30pm – 3pm: Connect with clients, prepare for a run.
3:15pm – 4:15pm: Run.
4:15pm – 6pm: Recovery routine.
6pm: Relax and unwind.

By prioritizing rest and recovery, I ensure I train smart and race fast.

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