5 Great Triathlon Books for 2013

There’s a trend in the tri world, that once you’ve won a race, you’re now qual­i­fied to write a book. No doubt, there’s some­thing to be learned from win­ning ath­letes, but I’d argue that some of the stuff out there isn’t worth your time.

In an effort to bring you a small sam­ple of the good stuff, here are some of the favorites from tri-ath­letes around the country.

A Life With­out Limits
Author: Chrissie Wellington
Rec­om­mend­ed by: Me (Two time Ironwoman)
What I say:

Welling­ton’s voice makes it seem like you’re read­ing about a friend who trav­els the world and acci­dent­ly becomes an Iron­man. She attrib­ut­es a lot of her suc­cess to her addic­tive and “con­trol-freak” per­son­al­i­ties; some­thing that I think most of us who enter adven­ture races, long dis­tance triathlons, and run marathons, can appreciate.

“Sport is my drug of choice these days. It’s one of the best drugs there is. It keeps you fit and healthy, even if, in the case of iron­man, it push­es your body to the limit.”

The book has a very pos­i­tive tone that is encour­ag­ing for chan­nel­ing your crav­ing into racing.

The Time Crunched Triathlete
Author: Chris Carmichael
Rec­om­mend­ed by: Tim Crist, of Tuc­son, Ari­zona, cur­rent­ly train­ing for Vine­man, a full dis­tance triathlon in July 2013.
What he says:

“I did­n’t read it as much for sav­ing time, as for all the options he gives on train­ing. Peri­odiza­tion and inter­val train­ing real­ly helped me get faster — espe­cial­ly in the pool. I am a fan of CTS (Carmichael Train­ing Sys­tems)  “Train — right” regard­less of what has come to light with Arm­strong. Fol­low­ing the train­ing reg­i­men had a notice­able pos­i­tive effect on my race times.”

Start to Fin­ish: 24 Weeks to an Endurance Triathlon
Author: Paul Hud­dle and Roch Frey
Rec­om­mend­ed by: Three time Iron­woman, Eri­ka Heins and her Iron­man hus­band, Luke.
What they said:

“Luke and I have fol­lowed this plan for two of our Iron­mans. I real­ly like the way he broke down the train­ing into 6‑week sec­tions each with its own focus. The work­outs were easy to under­stand and fol­low, with not too many tech­ni­cal terms, and the time was do-able…

This is not the 10-hour‑a week plan but for the most part it was rea­son­able for an Iron­man train­ing plan. It was a good book for a begin­ning iron­man triath­lete. Luke and I had not done a triathlon nor had we trained for one when we start­ed our first 24 week pro­gram for Iron­man Lake Placid, so we were total rook­ies for this, and this book was pret­ty good for that.”

The final chap­ters explain what to expect dur­ing race week and how to pre­pare for it which, is very useful.

I’m Here to Win
Author: Chris McCormack
Rec­om­mend­ed by: Three time Iron­woman, Corie Young of Wash­ing­ton, Oklahoma
What she said:

“It was a fas­ci­nat­ing look into the long career of what makes one of the world’s best all-around triath­letes. From his humor­ous hon­esty about mind games and atti­tude, and dis­cussing his com­pe­ti­tion in train­ing and rac­ing, it was a fun, moti­vat­ing, and edu­ca­tion­al book.”

Find­ing Ultra
Author: Rich Roll
Rec­om­mend­ed by: Joanne Fol­lett, who fin­ished her first Iron­man race in Tempe, Ariz this year.
What she said:

“It’s a great sto­ry,” Fol­lett said. “Much more so than Wellington’s who was basi­cal­ly an Iron­man prodi­gy and real­ly did­n’t over­come much to find her great­ness. I’m inspired by reg­u­lar peo­ple like me, with jobs, fam­i­lies, and lives, who set their mind to some­thing, who over­come obsta­cles and aver­age-ness, to accom­plish an Iron­man. My true inspi­ra­tion comes from those who race, even when they know there’s no prize mon­ey at the end, or per­haps cross the fin­ish line even after many of the spec­ta­tors have already left.”