The Sufferfest & Apex Coaching

70.3 / Half IM Triathlon Plan, by The Sufferfest

Plan Length: 12 Weeks

Want to CRUSH that 70.3 you have in 12 weeks? This is the training plan for you!

Can you answer "yes" to all of these questions?

You are 12 weeks away from a 70.3 Triathlon and you want to make sure you are ready to crush it.
You’ve been training consistently for the last 6 months, averaging between 6 and 10 hours a week.
You can run comfortably for 45 minutes without any pain or without needing to stop.
You can swim in open water for 30 minutes without needing to stop or hold onto anything.
You’ve competed in a triathlon at least once before and are familiar with training for all three disciplines
You want to take a structured approach to help you get the most out of your training.
You are time-crunched and only have 8-11 hours available a week to train.
You have access to a swimming pool or suitable body of water 2-3 times per week.
You want to become a more well-rounded athlete by incorporating yoga into your weekly training routine.

Plan Price: FREE


Note: These plans are designed to be used with The Sufferfest Training System. You will need to download and install The Sufferfest for iOS, macOS or Windows to access the workouts associated with these plans. To get started:

  1. Go to and download the app for your device.
  2. Create your account to start your free 7-day trial.
  3. Use promo code SURGE30 to get 30 days free or $12.99 off your annual subscription.

For questions about The Sufferfest please email

Sample Week of Training

Below is a week of training from this plan which represents the type of workouts you will be doing.

Cross Training - Yoga: In Couchlandria: The Office

Beginner If you're spending a lot of time sitting down in an office, stiffness, tension and soreness can creep into your body. That can affect your performance on the bike. This routine will counteract the damage done at the desk and ensure your body is ready to Suffer properly once you get on the bike.

Planned: 15:00

Bike - Standing Starts

Four Dimensional Power Focus:
NM: ✭✭✭✭✭
AC: ✭✭✩✩✩
MAP: ✭✩✩✩✩
FTP: ✭✩✩✩✩

Standing starts closely simulate a lifting session on the bike because it requires the engagement of your core, upper and lower body. Standing starts will train your ability to generate force through the pedals by forcing you to recruit all of your musculature. No matter your prefered discipline, these efforts are key to teaching your body to recruit all of the muscle fibers in your legs. The saying "Use it or Lose it" actually does apply here. All of the benefit in this session comes from hitting these 20 seconds effort as hard as you possibly can. To do that, you need full recovery between each sprint, and you need to respect that recovery! These efforts should see you start at super low RPMs with very high torque, as the effort continues your cadence will naturally increase. Your goal is to get your cadence as high as possible by the end of each 20 second effort. To maximize your muscle recruitment you want to both push down and pull up on the pedals at the start. Proper core engagement is a must, your legs need a good strong backboard to push against. We understand that not everyone's trainer has the necessary resistance, or the required stability, to perform this workout as described. For stability issues you can get much of the same benefit by doing these efforts seated. If your trainer can't handle the rapid change in speed, or does not have high enough resistance at super a super low cadence then you can start the efforts are a higher cadence and simply treat them as "normal" all out sprints.

Coach Notes:
This is a session that can be done indoors or outdoors. If done outdoors, come to a slow roll in your largest Chain Ring and your 3rd or 4th smallest cog on your rear cassette. Complete the same set of 4 x 20sec maximal start efforts, with 6-8 minutes of easy spinning between.

Planned: 45:00

Swim - Speed 25s to 100s

Speed, speed and more speed. This workout, as you may have guessed, is about speed. You will rarely go this fast during your event, but by working the sharp end of your fitness your threshold fitness also gets a nice boost. Here's what you need to do in order to crush this workout: Warm-up: Start with an easy 300m swim in the stroke of your choice. Activation 1: Swim 200m Kicks. Rest for 30 seconds. Activation 2: Swim 300m Pulls. Rest for 30 seconds. Activation 3: Swim 6 sets of 50m Drills. Rest 30 seconds. Speed Set: Swim 3 sets of the following: 50m at your Z6 (all out) pace. Rest for 15 seconds and repeat three more times. 50m, increasing from Z4 to sprint pace over the 50m. Rest for 25 seconds and repeat once more. 75m, alternate each 25m at Z4-Z3-Z4 pace. Rest for 40 seconds and repeat once more. 100m at Z4 pace. Rest for 60 seconds and repeat once more. Cool-down: Swim an easy 300m using the stroke of your choice.

Planned: 1:00:00

Cross Training - Breathing To CRUSH THEM

Perhaps the only people more Badass than Sufferlandrians are Navy Seals. And this is the breathing exercise that Navy Seals do to calm down and focus themselves before major operations. Learn and use this technique before heading into your own major events and races.

Planned: 3:00

Run - Off the Bike Run

Steady Z2 run immediately after your bike session. Good time to practice your second transition!

Planned: 30:00

Bike - Nine Hammers

Four Dimensional Power Focus:
NM: ✭✩✩✩✩
AC: ✭✭✭✩✩
MAP: ✭✭✭✭✭
FTP: ✭✭✭✭✩

Sometimes you're the hammer. Sometimes you're the nail. And sometimes you're getting both hammered and nailed. With a series of nine different intervals, all at or above threshold this is one of the best MAP sessions we offer. It isn't just the total amount of time spent above threshold, though. This workout takes the training stress up a notch by giving you barely enough time to recover from the previous hammer before the next one falls. This ensures your AC gets a little boost as well.

Planned: 59:00

Cross Training - Yoga: Shake off the Day

Beginner This gentle sequence is designed to loosen up tight muscles and encourage good postural habits. You can practice it in the morning to relieve stiffness or in the evening to wind down before bed. We finish with a short body scan meditation to calm your mind and release tension throughout the body. Modification: If you're unable to sit back on your heels in Child's pose, you can put a couple of cushions or a pillow between your calves and the backs of your thighs.

Planned: 15:00

Bike - Recovery Spin

Very easy ride Resist the temptation to go harder or faster. Power should remain under 50% of FTP the entire time, and Heart Rate should never go above Z1

Planned: 30:00

Run - 3 x 1.5k Increasing

If you drill into the pacing strategies of any endurance competitor, you quickly learn that the negative split is the fastest way to complete a course. A negative split is where your pace is higher during the second half of the course. We'll work on that pacing strategy today. Here's what you need to do in order to crush this session: Warm-up: Jog for 10 minutes and an easy Z1/Z2 pace. Activation 1: Do 2 sets of 50m of your choice of drills (butt kicks, high knees, etc.). Take 30 seconds rest between each drill. Activation 2: 2-3 sets of 150-200m at Z4a pace. Rest for 30 seconds in between sets. 3 x 51.1K: 3 sets of 1.5K beginning at Z3 pace and steadily increasing to Z4a over the distance. Easy walk or jog for 3 minutes between each effort. Strive to achieve the same pace across all three efforts. Cool-down: Walk or jog for 5-10 minutes to cool down.

Planned: 35:00

Swim - Open Water Simulation

This is an unstructured swim to help simulate the conditions you'll encounter on the day of your event. If you're swimming in open water for this simulation, use your wetsuit (if available) if your next event allows wetsuits. Focus on three things for this workout session: After a short warm up, swim continuously for the entire session. Alternate your breath (left and right) for the entire swim. Maintain a Z3 or low Z4 pace for the duration indicated in your schedule. Practice your sighting (see Definitions).

Planned: 1:00:00

Cross Training - Yoga: Hips and Hamstrings

Intermediate This routine is designed to open up the hips-the hip flexors, rotators and glutes-and stretch the hamstrings. We move through a series of lunges and finish with Lizard and Pigeon pose. You can practice it in the morning, before or after a ride. Experiment to see what works best for you. Modification: If you can't reach the mat in Low Lunge with Sidebend, you can rest your bottom hand on a block.

Planned: 15:00

Run - 2 x 6k Kicking

We know that triathlons are more focused on steadily paced runs, but if you're ever going to get faster then you need to do some speed work! Find a flat track or course with regular distance markers and prepare yourself for some explosive speed work. Here's what you need to do in order to crush this session: Warm-up: Jog for 10 minutes and an easy Z1/Z2 pace. Activation: 3 sets of 75m sprint efforts at Z5. Recover for 30 seconds. 2x 6k Kicking: 2 sets of 6k at Z2/Z3 pace, with the final 100m at Z5 (the kick). Pace it such that you are increasing your speed over the 100m and not slowing at the end. Easy walk or jog for 3 minutes between each effort. Cool-down: Walk or jog for 5-10 minutes to cool down.

Planned: 1:15:00

Swim - 1800 Pyramid

This swim is designed to work your ability to sustain race pace and build steadily over the full distance of a swim. The first efforts won't feel that difficult, just like the first quarter of the swim on race day. As you make your way through, you will find that this pace becomes harder and harder to hold. Your mission is to finish the second half of the pyramid faster than the first, so keep some in the tank. The pyramid is also a great way of getting in a lot of swim distance (just over the Olympic swim length of 1500m). Here's what you need to do in order to crush this workout: Warm-up: Start with an easy 200m swim in the stroke of your choice. Activation 1: Swim 4 sets of 75m Drills with 20 seconds of rest between each. Activation 2: 200m Kicks with 30 seconds rest at the end and then straight into the Pyramid main set. 1800m Pyramid: Swim 50/100/150/200/250/300/250/150/100/50 meters at Z4 (Z4a for the first half, Z4b for the second half). Rest as indicated below. The goal here is to finish the second half of the pyramid faster than the first half. Rest for 15 seconds after 50m. Rest for 20 second after 100m. Rest for 25 seconds after 150m. Rest for 30 seconds after 200m. Rest for 40 seconds after 250m. Rest for 60 seconds after 300m. Sprints: Swim 4 sets of 25m at your flat out sprint pace (Z6) pace. Rest for 30 seconds and repeat. Pulls: Swim Pulls (see Technical Swim Definitions) for 300m at Z3 pace. Cool-down: Swim an easy 300m using the stroke of your choice.

Planned: 2:00:00

Cross Training - More Breathing to CALM DOWN

3-Part Breath is a therapeutic breathing technique that encourages you to use your full lung capacity.

Planned: 3:00

Bike - Endurance+

Steady Endurance/Base ride. Power should remain between 55-70% of FTP the entire time. Aim to keep between 75-85% of LTHR This is a ride that can be out doors OR indoors If done inside, you can play OPEN 60/OPEN 30 and adjust the intensity to 64-81% Another option is to select any Video of a similar length, ignore the power targets (meaning running slope mode for those with smart trainers) holding power between 55-70% of FTP and only following the Cadence and Stand/Sit prompts in the video

Planned: 2:45:00

Plan Price: FREE