Print and Go Back ESPN.com: Olympics [Print without images]

Monday, May 14, 2012
Kemper's training routine not for the timid

By Jim Caple

Want to be an Olympic triathlete? All you have to do is follow four-time Olympian Hunter Kemper's daily routine. Warning: Just reading it may require a performance-enhancer. Or some quality time on the couch afterward.

"A typical training day for me is swim practice from 7 to 9," he said. "I swim 5,000 meters or about three miles of swimming."

Swim three miles before breakfast? That can't be easy, but at least his training is over early, right?

"I'll take a little break, eat a big breakfast and go for a run around noon, and run about nine or 10 miles, about an hour of running."

Wait, there's more.

"I'll finish off with a bike ride in the 3-5 o'clock time frame, and that's about 40 miles or two hours of cycling."

Tired yet?

"I'm looking at about a 32-hour work week," Kemper said. "That's 28 hours of pure training, four hours of rehab and core stuff, so a 32-hour work week with about 25,000-30,000 meters of swimming, about 250 miles of cycling and about 60 miles of running a week. And it's usually all three disciplines a day. It's not like I do one sport a day and another sport the next -- it's usually all three, every day. And in that week, I'll do three hard run sessions, three difficult bike sessions and three difficult swim sessions, all staggered on different days."

Freeman qualified for his fourth Olympics by finishing as the top American in the World Triathlon Championships in San Diego on Saturday. He has improved his finish in each Olympics, finishing 17th in 2000, ninth in 2004 and seventh in 2008, when he was dealing with a sports hernia.