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Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time
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Hi,

I have done 2 Half last year with 6:50-7:15 finish time.
I will do another half in early summer and thinking about doing 1 Full in Oct or Nov.
I don't have much time available for training.

For half, I follow the Super Simple training plan (accomplish about 90% of the training load every week)
https://www.triathlete.com/...-training-plan_12364

When I look around for Full training, I see
https://www.triathlete.com/...training-plan_300853

I feel that that Full training above is not much more demanding than the half I followed.

I am targeting at 13-15hours.

My question is that: is the Full plan above realistic?

Thank you for your advice.

Harry
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Re: Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time [Harry2018] [ In reply to ]
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Looks sensible after I had a short glance at the program.
You will have to know where your zones are and how you measure it (hr or pm).
Fitness is important but don't forget the other side of the medal: aerodynamics.
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Re: Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time [Harry2018] [ In reply to ]
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Harry2018 wrote:
Hi,

I have done 2 Half last year with 6:50-7:15 finish time.
I will do another half in early summer and thinking about doing 1 Full in Oct or Nov.
I don't have much time available for training.

For half, I follow the Super Simple training plan (accomplish about 90% of the training load every week)
https://www.triathlete.com/...-training-plan_12364

When I look around for Full training, I see
https://www.triathlete.com/...training-plan_300853

I feel that that Full training above is not much more demanding than the half I followed.

I am targeting at 13-15hours.

My question is that: is the Full plan above realistic?

Thank you for your advice.

Harry

Only thing that raised my attention was that the longest swim is 45min, given that an avg ag uses 1:15-1:30 minutes for the full swim distance, i would atleast once or twice go 1h+ to get a feel for it. There is a couple of longer runs and bike workout within the program too. Its around what i averaged for my first full (due to injury not time commitment), maybe even a bit more and i went 12:30.
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Re: Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time [Harry2018] [ In reply to ]
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"Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time"

Do 70.3 well and enjoy it. Don't half arse 140.6.
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Re: Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time [Harry2018] [ In reply to ]
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The training doesn't necessarily need to be much more in volume (then 15h/week), but the suffering in a full ironman as compared to a half ironman is,, imho,, 'seriously next level' :-) With a half IM finishing time of around 7 hours, it think it is statistically very unlikely someone would finish a full ironman under 15 hours unless your base and fitness improve a lot.

Good luck! Crossing the full-ironman finish line is 'next level' too :-)
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Re: Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time [Duncan74] [ In reply to ]
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The training plan looks good, I've done only two IM's but I trained at an average of 7,5H/week and a max of 12H/week, finished the two in 10:40 and 10:50.
the average time spent was something like 2*40 mins swim, 4-5*1H zwift, 3*45 min running, then toward the end I added some "long" sessions ( 20K run, 100K bike).

It will not take you to your best result possible, but this should be enough to get you to the finish line in good conditions and you're very unlikely to get hurt because of overtraining.
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Re: Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time [strangename] [ In reply to ]
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10:40 with 7 hours training is very fast👍🏻
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Re: Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time [Testrider] [ In reply to ]
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Testrider wrote:
10:40 with 7 hours training is very fast👍🏻


Well, I am sure, Jan Frodeno could do an Ironman in 2020 with only 5hrs of training in 10:40, too...

If your goal really is to finish an Ironman in 15h, the plan should be ok. In 15h you could spend 1,5hrs for the swim, 6hrs for the bike and just hike 42,195km...
If your goal is to actually run the marathon, it maybe would be better to get fitter for another 1-2 years of consistent endurance training (8-10hrs/week should be more then enough) and then prepare for the Ironman with maybe 12hrs/week during a 6 month time frame.
Last edited by: Amnesty: May 14, 19 4:10
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Re: Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time [Harry2018] [ In reply to ]
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Plan is ok.....but this is the reality. You will have a long bike followed by a 26 mile walk
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Re: Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time [Harry2018] [ In reply to ]
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Harry2018 wrote:
Hi,

I have done 2 Half last year with 6:50-7:15 finish time.
I will do another half in early summer and thinking about doing 1 Full in Oct or Nov.
I don't have much time available for training.

For half, I follow the Super Simple training plan (accomplish about 90% of the training load every week)
https://www.triathlete.com/...-training-plan_12364

When I look around for Full training, I see
https://www.triathlete.com/...training-plan_300853

I feel that that Full training above is not much more demanding than the half I followed.

I am targeting at 13-15hours.

My question is that: is the Full plan above realistic?

Thank you for your advice.

Harry

To be completely honest with you, if you are finishing a half in the 7-hr time range, and using a training plan like this, you are looking at a midnight finish. 16-17 hours.

There isn't nearly enough swimming in here to get you out of the water in a comfortable place in terms of fatigue. You are setting yourself up for a swim/bike/26-mile-walk.

My suggestion is stick with 70.3s until you have the time to dedicate to full IM training. A full IM isn't "just" twice a half. It can be much much worse. And the training, while done at less intensity, must be significantly higher in volume in order to build fitness for a full day of movement. You can't, at your current fitness level (referring to a 7-hr 70.3), just double your 70.3 time and expect to be able to sustain it for a full.

Answer to your question: no it isn't realistic for you. It will get you to the finish line, maybe. But it will be a long sufferfest of a day for the last 6 hours.
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Re: Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time [Testrider] [ In reply to ]
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Testrider wrote:
10:40 with 7 hours training is very fast👍🏻
.

I did a similar time on about 8 hours training per week. No run longer than 75 minutes. No ride longer than 3:30. No swim longer than 35 minutes. I don’t consider myself super fast and I was 43 years old. I was just very consistent in my training in the year leading up to it.

2020 Races:
Ironman 70.3 Musselman, Ironman 70.3 Panama, Ironman Chattanooga, Ironman Arizona

Favorite Gear: Dimond | TriRig | Desoto Sport | Hoka One One
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Re: Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time [Duncan74] [ In reply to ]
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Duncan74 wrote:
"Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time"

Do 70.3 well and enjoy it. Don't half arse 140.6.

I'm with Duncan on this one. And I'm fresh off an attempt to race an ironman this past Saturday up in in Santa Rosa. I'm an experienced racer and have raced Ironmans since 2002. i have no idea how old you are, but I'm in the W50-54 age group. For this race, other things in life trumped the swim and bike training and I didn't really do one long ride. The one 4:45 ride I did wasn't mostly in aero.

I figured that I show up to IMSR and bank on my experience in racing MDOTS (20) and 70.3s and use my run fitness to catch up during the 3rd discipline. Boy I was wrong! Basically all was relatively ok until about mile 60-70 of the bike and then I started crumbling. Got to the run and really couldn't run. The run is my strength and it was the only sport that I had actually trained properly in terms of MDOT training but because the bike training was so compromised, I couldn't run.

I would (and did) pull that run off 15 years ago. But as an older athlete, even with experience, it didn't work for me.

Just thought that I'd share this fresh thought with you. If I had the above hindsight before the race, I would have never towed the line.

leslie myers
http://www.foodsensenow.com
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Re: Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time [The GMAN] [ In reply to ]
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The GMAN wrote:
Testrider wrote:
10:40 with 7 hours training is very fast👍🏻
.

I did a similar time on about 8 hours training per week. No run longer than 75 minutes. No ride longer than 3:30. No swim longer than 35 minutes. I don’t consider myself super fast and I was 43 years old. I was just very consistent in my training in the year leading up to it.

Being very consistent is the best way to go, agreed.
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Re: Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time [strangename] [ In reply to ]
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You'll never know how far your training volume will take you until you try.

Give it a shot, see how you go, and then you'll have a far better idea of what you need to do for next time. I doubt anyone ever finishes their first ironman and with hindsight would have done all their training as it was.

-----
http://www.howesgreg.com
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Re: Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time [BungleJapan] [ In reply to ]
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BungleJapan wrote:
You'll never know how far your training volume will take you until you try.

Give it a shot, see how you go, and then you'll have a far better idea of what you need to do for next time. I doubt anyone ever finishes their first ironman and with hindsight would have done all their training as it was.

Sorry, but I don‘t agree with you.
He did try twice with half distance Triathlons at around 7h.
Now he asks, if it is realisitc to double the distance, reduce the time (13h finish) with 7 weeks with 10hrs training.
Of course you can just try an Ironman an quit after 100k on the bike. But would you really recommend someone, who sais he is limited on time to waste 7 weeks and probably over 1000$ on just giving it a shot?
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Re: Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time [Amnesty] [ In reply to ]
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Amnesty wrote:
BungleJapan wrote:
You'll never know how far your training volume will take you until you try.

Give it a shot, see how you go, and then you'll have a far better idea of what you need to do for next time. I doubt anyone ever finishes their first ironman and with hindsight would have done all their training as it was.


Sorry, but I don‘t agree with you.
He did try twice with half distance Triathlons at around 7h.
Now he asks, if it is realisitc to double the distance, reduce the time (13h finish) with 7 weeks with 10hrs training.
Of course you can just try an Ironman an quit after 100k on the bike. But would you really recommend someone, who sais he is limited on time to waste 7 weeks and probably over 1000$ on just giving it a shot?

This.

What's the rush to get to 140.6? Better off building your fitness and ability at shorter races. There is nothing special about "being an Ironman". Enjoy the journey. Learn about the sport. Improve gradually and within the limits of your training time. Maximize what you can do with that time, but understand the limitations it imposes.

When you have the time to properly devote to training, that's when it's time to tackle an Ironman. Doing otherwise is a recipe for failure, or a really long and unpleasant day that leads you to putting your bike and wetsuit on EBay, and calling it quits with the sport.
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Re: Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time [g_lev] [ In reply to ]
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g_lev wrote:
Harry2018 wrote:
Hi,

I have done 2 Half last year with 6:50-7:15 finish time.
I will do another half in early summer and thinking about doing 1 Full in Oct or Nov.
I don't have much time available for training.

For half, I follow the Super Simple training plan (accomplish about 90% of the training load every week)
https://www.triathlete.com/...-training-plan_12364

When I look around for Full training, I see
https://www.triathlete.com/...training-plan_300853

I feel that that Full training above is not much more demanding than the half I followed.

I am targeting at 13-15hours.

My question is that: is the Full plan above realistic?

Thank you for your advice.

Harry

To be completely honest with you, if you are finishing a half in the 7-hr time range, and using a training plan like this, you are looking at a midnight finish. 16-17 hours.

There isn't nearly enough swimming in here to get you out of the water in a comfortable place in terms of fatigue. You are setting yourself up for a swim/bike/26-mile-walk.

My suggestion is stick with 70.3s until you have the time to dedicate to full IM training. A full IM isn't "just" twice a half. It can be much much worse. And the training, while done at less intensity, must be significantly higher in volume in order to build fitness for a full day of movement. You can't, at your current fitness level (referring to a 7-hr 70.3), just double your 70.3 time and expect to be able to sustain it for a full.

Answer to your question: no it isn't realistic for you. It will get you to the finish line, maybe. But it will be a long sufferfest of a day for the last 6 hours.

Not to pile on a somewhat discouraging opinion, but I agree with g-lev. I race with a few buddies who are in the 6-7 hour 70.3 range, and their IM attempts generally turn into midnight finishes after a rough 26.2 mile walk. It kind of depends what you want to get out of the IM experience, but personally I would not do an IM unless I could comfortably do a 70.3 in the 5:30-6 hr range, especially if you’re time constrained. I think you’d be better served getting faster racing Olympic and 70.3 for another year and then making the jump. The races will always be there, you might as well make your first IM a good experience.

Something a lot of people forget is there is a big difference between someone who runs a 4.5-5hr 70.3 training 12-15 hours per week and a guy running a 7hr 70.3. You cover a lot more ground when your “easy” run pace is a 7:30-8 min mile vs 10:00+, to say nothing of the fact that at 10+ you’re not really “running” and thus have crappy biomechanics that increase injury risk.

It’s incredibly frustrating, I know. But keep at it. If you work hard enough, one day you’ll be one of the faster guys.
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Re: Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time [Harry2018] [ In reply to ]
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Harry2018 wrote:
Hi,

I have done 2 Half last year with 6:50-7:15 finish time.
I will do another half in early summer and thinking about doing 1 Full in Oct or Nov.
I don't have much time available for training.

For half, I follow the Super Simple training plan (accomplish about 90% of the training load every week)
https://www.triathlete.com/...-training-plan_12364

When I look around for Full training, I see
https://www.triathlete.com/...training-plan_300853

I feel that that Full training above is not much more demanding than the half I followed.

I am targeting at 13-15hours.

My question is that: is the Full plan above realistic?

Thank you for your advice.

Harry

My advice would be to focus a little more on your half distance and get your overall time down. I don't know why there is a rush to do a full Ironman before people are truly ready. Maybe focus on a couple half Ironmans this year with a time goal of 6 hours (5.5 on a flat course). Then a full Ironman will go so much better for you once you have a good base of fitness and experience under your belt. You can do full Ironmans into your 60s or 70s. It's an older person's sport so there is plenty of time.
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Re: Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time [Harry2018] [ In reply to ]
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I'm going to chime in here on the side with the people who say skip the full and do more halfs or local sprints/olys

With a half time of ~ 7h in a half, you're looking at a full time about 15:20-16:20. As the duration increases your velocity on all 3 legs is going to decrease and the margin of error for not finishing is going to go up. It just makes for a long day of trudging along.

Everyone has their own goals/desires for these things. You'll need to sort out with yourself if it's really worth spending 15+ hours on the course. If you were my athlete I'd strongly advise against it. YMMV.

Brian Stover
Accelerate3 Coaching
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IG
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Re: Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time [Amnesty] [ In reply to ]
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Amnesty wrote:
BungleJapan wrote:
You'll never know how far your training volume will take you until you try.

Give it a shot, see how you go, and then you'll have a far better idea of what you need to do for next time. I doubt anyone ever finishes their first ironman and with hindsight would have done all their training as it was.


Sorry, but I don‘t agree with you.
He did try twice with half distance Triathlons at around 7h.
Now he asks, if it is realisitc to double the distance, reduce the time (13h finish) with 7 weeks with 10hrs training.
Of course you can just try an Ironman an quit after 100k on the bike. But would you really recommend someone, who sais he is limited on time to waste 7 weeks and probably over 1000$ on just giving it a shot?

Hey, no need to apologise - we all have different opinions!!

I know plenty of people who finish IM distance races just inside the cut-off time, and I don't think their experience is in any way poorer than mine by virtue of my faster finishing time. On the contrary, it's quite possible they have a more enjoyable time and soak up the atmosphere more.

It reminds me of the slower runners in London this year who were subjected to abuse (allegedly?) by spectators and cleaning staff. Their experience is just as valid as the faster runners, as long as they finish inside the cut-off time.

Of course, I don't disagree that consistent training will yield consistent improvements, but a 'slow' IM race could be part of that progression.

-----
http://www.howesgreg.com
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Re: Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time [Duncan74] [ In reply to ]
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Duncan74 wrote:
"Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time"

Do 70.3 well and enjoy it. Don't half arse 140.6.


Comment from the peanut gallery.
First full IM was in '85 and basically have done 30 plus since then returning to the sport in '96, with a Legacy spot at Kona in '14.
I'm about 3 weeks shy of my 60th, and am excited to be going up an age group, but for what?
Haven't done a tri of any kind since '16.
in hindsight, it's almost been a waste, the time, the resources and energy spent training, travelling, racing etc. to do Ironman.
What, so I can say or think or be known as Avago, the Ironman. Yes it was for my own satisfaction & enjoyment and not for any label or reward.
actually, it was the training that I loved, the group camaraderie etc. butthat can still be had on 2 hr rides, no need for 6 hr rides.
If I had my time again in tri's it'd be to become the best sprint or Olympic distance athlete I could.

that being said, there definitely some great joys,in there, like 10 hr IMs, some fantastic trips to great places to race, so I'm not suggesting it was all bad.

doing a full on half baked training? why bother, you'll just be exhausted & disappointed.
Last edited by: Avago: May 15, 19 21:14
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Re: Advice for Full Ironman training with limited time [Honey] [ In reply to ]
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Thanks for sharing this experience Leslie. I am certain many wouldn’t want to come on here and post about how their race went off the rails, but it is incredibly helpful for me.

Ironman takes a lot, and after several acceptable (for me) races there is always the urge to get signed up for another without the serious reflection on what it will take (again). With your extensive experience it shows how the race has no respect for prior results.

I am going to pause and reflect about all those 5-6 hour rides I put in before committing to another race thinking I might be able to fake it.

All the best!

Aaron Torrelio
--everything in moderation, including moderation
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