Why Triathletes Should Strength Train

In triathlon, the winner isn't usually the one who goes out the fastest. It's the one who slows down the least.

Already juggling swimming, cycling, and running in their weekly schedules, many triathletes find it difficult to make time for other exercise sessions, particularly ones that don’t involve being in the pool, on the bike, or on the road.

But the benefits to doing strength training should not be ignored. Triathlon, especially as the distances grow longer, is about holding form through fatigue and slowing down the least. Building strength helps you hold your form and speed for longer.

(Photo credit: 3rnald0 on Visualhunt / CC BY)


Nils Hestermann is the head of Strength and Conditioning at Precision Athletica. With a background in professional European football, he has committed his life after his playing career to a more specific application of performance. Nils is passionate about functionality and movement efficiency and improving strength and power. He explains below how strength training can apply to triathletes.


Strength training improves stability, which supports proper alignment, movement patterns and energy transfer (core), as well as helping to reduce injuries. A good strength program will also help you increase power, improve your VO2 Max and better your muscular endurance.


Strength training programs don’t always have to use equipment. Therefore performing bodyweight workouts focusing on the core (shoulder, trunk and hips) are a great way to still get some training in.

Depending on experience and current training level we are able to adjust workouts so they are still challenging and the body will have to adapt to a new stimulus. 


Technique is key – performing squats as well as finding that aero position on the bike requires technique. We will need your glutes to be very dominant when creating power through your hips throughout the full range while squatting, or the whole pedal stroke when riding your bike. A flat back and mobility in your hips are key for both transfer from one to the other as well as ensuring long lasting performance. 

With MaccaX’s high-performance partnership with Precision Athletica, expect our members to receive even more in-depth advice and recommendations on cross-training for our chosen sport. 

MaccaX offers a wide range of triathlon training plans to suit your fitness and goals. You may also inquire with our coaches for customized plans.


Noelle De Guzman
Noelle De Guzman
Noelle De Guzman is a freelance writer with ten years of experience in the field of fitness and wellness. She blogs at KikayRunner.com about endurance sport in the Philippines and beyond.