Top Triathlete Mari Rabie’s Training Guide For Trialthons

by | Mar 24, 2016 | Fitness

Triathlon is so hot right now! Daring to tri? Get on this training guide from SA’s top triathlete, Mari Rabie.

How To Use The Guide

NOTE: This guide assumes that you’ve got some triathlon training under your belt. If you’re a total beginner, start small, then build up to this.

You should aim to do one discipline a day, says Mari, and focus on your weakest discipline. For example, if you’re a weak swimmer, you’d programme your week so you have three swims, two rides, two runs and one gym or Pilates session. All in all, you’re looking at eight sessions, with two sessions on Saturday and one rest day. Make a weekend of your training, suggests Mari. It’s a good way of fitting in all your disciplines because you’ll have more free time, and it’s a good measure of where you’re at physically. Don’t be intimidated! With each training session, you’ll get stronger.

Mari’s Training Plan

Follow this training plan, devised by Olympic triathlete Mari Rabie. (Now ranked 13th for the season so far!) Even if you’re a total novice, this plan will get you on the right, ahem, track for a half Olympic distance (750m swim, 20km bike, 5km run.) Scale the distances below to suit your abilities and remember to stop when you’re tired or you’ll risk an injury.


Go for a 2km swim.


Run for 40 minutes, with a Pilates or conditioning class in the evening.

Mari’s tip: “At the start it’s important to note that you can do walk-runs – so say run for 6 minutes and walk for 1 minute. As you get fitter, you can push to run 9 minutes and walk 1 minute – until you can run the whole 40 minutes!”


Cycle for 90 minutes, or go to a spinning class.


2km swim.




Run for 45 minutes to an hour, alternating from two-minute stretches of running to three minutes of jogging. Repeat this sequence five times until your hour is up, then go for a 1.5km swim in open water.


Two-hour cycle to a brunch spot you love. Meet up with your girlfriends for a post-workout coffee!

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