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Tue 18th Feb 2020
Simon Ward: The Phase Plan
Posted by: Simon Ward
Posted on: Friday 21st June 2013

Tags  Hawaii 50  |  Ironman Lanzarote  |  Kona 2014  |  Simon Ward

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A few weeks back Simon Ward introduced his own project "Hawaii 50" - his attempt to qualify for Kona at Ironman Lanzarote 2014 as he turns 50 next year.

Having introduced the plan, and WHAT he thinks he might need to do to achieve it, HOW is he going to do that? Next up, The Phase Plan.

Hawaii Five-0: The Phase Plan

This week I thought I share with you exactly how that plan will come together over the next 12 months. I create one of these for all of my athletes and its known as a phase plan. If truth be known I “borrowed” the idea from British Cycling a few years ago.

Now until
June 22

Train for and then ride “Raid Pyrenees” 720km, 11,000m of climbing in 100 hours
Swim 10km per week & recover from calf injury sustained at Mallorca 70.3

June 23-June 30

Post Raid recovery - Light training only

July 1 - September 4

Fiona and I are second reserves for Ö till Ö a 65km swim/run race with 10-12km of swimming and 50+ km of running. Assuming that we eventually get a place then this phase will focus on swimming and running. I’ll use a similar plan to that outlined for IM Lanzarote which is swimming three times per week for 10-12k and running three days per week probably totaling 3-4 hours. I might add a long walk across the fells to build leg endurance without adding too much to the running fatigue.
I see this as a good opportunity to build a good running base and something I can develop in the winter
I will of course, still keep cycling during this period. Although the volume will be less I’ll be aiming to hold onto the fitness from the Pyrenees by using the Computrainer for high intensity intervals twice a week and a longish ride at the weekends

September 5 -
October 20

I consider this period my end of season break. I’ll have some fun events in here and I will be in Hawaii working for two weeks in October so I will jog around and swim most days, but nothing serious. During this period I’ll be maintaining my fitness but I view my workouts as activity rather than training. This means I don't really use my Power meter, heart rate monitor or stop watch. I just get it done and enjoy being fit. I’ll probably run or bike to work and maybe do some Mountain Biking at the weekends.

October 20-
Dec 29

Winter Base Training
This is my winter foundation. The main goals are

  1. Stay healthy & injury free
  2. Focus on strength & conditioning
  3. Attend to weaknesses which in this case are running technique, so I’ll be doing lots of running drills

The volume will be 12-14 hours per week. I’ll be targeting all the training zones during this period so that I can transition into high intensity work when the Ironman Lanzarote 20 week programme starts in earnest.
To give my body some variety I will also swap out some triathlon sessions for alternative sports, so, walking instead of long runs, mountain biking instead of a long ride and rowing instead of running. This allows the traditional tri sport muscles a rest and emphasises some other muscle groups
As we have an apartment in Lanzarote I’ll probably be able to get over to the island once or twice to get in a week of big cycling miles.
At some stage I’ll use a power meter to workout what sort of average power I’ll need to hit my target times. Once I have this figure I can reverse engineer the sums and work out what my final FTP score needs to be just before race day
In the final week of the year there will be benchmark fitness tests in all 3 disciplines. For the swim I’ll do a CSS test and 2k TT. On the bike it will be the trusty CP20 test on the CompuTrainer and running I’l probably do either a parkrun 5k to ascertain my vDot value Or I’ll do a sub max 10k holding a specific heart rate

Dec 30 - Feb 9
6 weeks
Specific Conditioning 1

In this phase I’ll be starting to build up the volume. However as the weather is likely to be cold with shorter days, I’ll focus on the higher intensity work aiming to boost my aerobic capacity (Vo2 max) My weekend rides will be restricted to three hours but I will aim to travel to Lanzarote for at least one weeks of big miles. Strength & conditioning still plays a big part in my training.
The plan outlined in the previous article will really kick in from now. In the final week I’ll be repeating the fitness tests.I’ll be aiming to maintain or drop my CSS score by 1-2s and increase my CP20 score by 3%. I’ll be looking for a faster pace at the same heart rate on the run

Feb 10 - April 13
9 weeks
Specific Conditioning 2

After 6 weeks of higher intensity training the next 9 weeks will emphasise threshold work. Starting out with 3 weeks targeting the 2nd turn point (anaerobic threshold), then 3 weeks hitting 1st (sometimes called aerobic threshold) & 2nd turn points and finally in the last 3 weeks the 1st turn point. This is an area just above IM Race pace (more like IM 70.3 pace) and is much more specific to race demands. Once again I’ll try to get out to Lanzarote for a BIG cycling week.
All other riding will either be done on the Tri bike or on the Velotron which will be set up  the same as the TT bike
In this phase emphasis on S&C work is reduced but there is always a maintenance load.
Repeat fitness tests come around again in week 6 just so that I can push on especially in the cycling

April 14 - May 4
3 weeks

These are the big weeks with the highest volume of training.
Week 1 - 16-18 hours,
Week 2 - 12-14 hours,
Week 3 - 16-18 hours,
The emphasis will be race pace work and just about every ride will be on the race bike. Most of the extra volume will be through cycling as this s where I can make most gains without too much injury risk

May 5 - 17
2 weeks

In my taper phase the main goal is rest, recovery replenishment and regeneration. This is done by reducing the volume of training but maintaining the frequency. 4 days of little of no training will promote this and then 5 days of moderate training will ensure that I maintain fitness will holding onto the freshness. We will be traveling out to Lanzarote 7-10 days before to make sure that we are fully acclimatised before the race
This is how the taper looks
Monday no training,
Tuesday - Thursday - 30 mins per day (swim, bike, run)
Friday-Tuesday - 1.5-2 hours of moderate activity with faster than race pace efforts,
Wednesday - Saturday - easing down into the race

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Hawaii Sponsors Sketchers Impact CT FondriestLe Beau VeloAMP Vekta Velosport

Simon Ward About the Author

Simon Ward is the founder of, the most experienced group of coaches in the UK. You can contact him on 08700 418131, by e-mailing or by visiting

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Have Your Say
Re: Simon Ward: The Phase Plan
Posted by robtherunner
Posted at 17:35:05 20th Jun 2013
Reply to this

Simon, I am also turning 50, next year, in February and coined exactly the same Project Hawaii Five O phrase.
Hoping to qualify at Wales in 45-49 age group or as a back up IMUK next year - best of luck to you
Rob Wood
Re: Simon Ward: The Phase Plan
Posted by Brent Perkins
Posted at 17:36:25 21st Jun 2013
Reply to this

Simon good plan but looking at your bike and run times from Majorca this year think you will need to significantly improve you race pace to stand any chance of going to the island, but good luck you have to be in it to win it.