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At Evolve Triathlon Coaching we have 5 training zones:

• Easy
• Steady
• Moderately Hard
• Hard
• Very hard

All are explained later down the page.

These zones are here to know how hard or easy you go in each workout. Majority of athletes train too hard, therefor get injured and run down. 80% of our training is done in Zone 1 and 2 (Easy & Steady). This makes sure the athlete is conditioned before indulging into some harder work later on in the programs.


To get these zones we do fitness testing for all 3 disiplines. Swimming: 400m & 200m Time trial
Biking: 20 minute Time trial (either outdoors or on Zwift) Run: 30 min hard effort

From here you can calculate your zones by putting these into Training Peaks. These are shown in a different “How to page” on our resources page. Once you have calculated your zones, you can use any of the measures below:

• Pace
• Heart rate
• Power
• Feel or PCV (Perceived effort)

If you don’t have GPS, heart rate or power, this doesn’t matter, you can do this off feel or PCV. Below are what each zone should feel like:

EASY – Zone 1

This is a pace mainly used for warm ups or as part of a longer session. It is a comfortable effort and doesn't require concentration to maintain pace.

STEADY – Zone 2

Your breathing rate will be higher than in Zone 1. Usually you will sit at 30- 50 beats below your maximum heart rate. There is some concentration required to maintain this effort. You can hold a conversation but are slightly out of breath.


You can only just hold a conversation. Your heart rate sits approximately 20-30 beats below your maximum. The oxygen supply can still keep up with the demand - so this is still aerobic. The fitter you are the longer you can hold this effort.

HARD – Zone 4

This is at the higher end of threshold. For some (professional short distance triathletes, 5 km runners) this is race pace. Usually you will sit at 10-30 heart beats below your maximum. You cannot hold a conversation at this effort.


Close to maximum effort, or less than 10 beats below maximum heart rate. Very rarely do we use this, and usually only by elite athletes. Most people can only hold this for under 45 seconds.

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