The Ironman in 2019 thread

One of my issues/concerns/ musings at the minute is that I have no idea what speed/ time I’ll see out on the road. I’ve got 2 weeks of build left, yesterday I did avalanche spire and jacked it up by about 15 watts because it felt easy. My ftp at the minute is 253 but I’m expecting an increase when I test. Because this is my first year of training with power I have no idea how that will correlate. I will get out on the road probably next week but I’m enjoying structured riding, the challenges that come with it and the convenience so much I’m not desperate to.

Supposedly Jan frodeno walks the aid stations. That doesn’t mean he’s stopping at all of them mind you but heard he had a deliberate plan. Considering how many times I’ve messed up trying to drink while running (and gulping a bunch of air) i will be trying this out this year.

You certainly have to try and keep the same cadence while walking. Which if doing in training makes you look a right tool :wink:

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Ive always used walk/run but I’m less convinced than I was originally. Once I stop running, my body doesn’t not want to run anymore. Every interval becomes more and more of a hassle.

Take my last long run, running fine, took a planned break at 1hr to drink some fuel, got going again feeling fine. 30mins later body says enough of this run lark, time to walk. 15mins after that, body says walk time!

A 2h continuous run isn’t nevessarily easier or harder, but I don’t have to deal with the psychological battle to get going and keep going.

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Having the run/walk alerts on ur watch keep you more honest… unless you’re already doing that.
Definitely is easy whenever coming to a walk to give in :slightly_frowning_face:… that’s the sport of Ironman for you :joy:

Edit: think about it (IM run leg) as a long long sweetspot interval with back spins placed at timed intervals - get’s you a ton of physical recovery while maintaining a great performance :woman_shrugging:

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Coach @chad gave an explanation of what run/walk does from a physiological perspective in one podcast episode (I couldn’t find it in a cursory search - little help, @Jonathan?) where it was illustrated with an example of a fast marathon finisher who would walk the aid stations. IIRC it sounded like it was good for avoiding breakdown by providing small recovery opportunities. I walked the aid stations in my only ever marathon (Great Wall Marathon in China) and it probably helped, but in the end I was overwhelmed by the nightmarish amount of uneven stairs (5000!) and my legs were cooked :laughing:


Thank you @JoeX and @schmidt for contributing…

My plan: (wish I could plan out more than year out on the calendar, dropped my TP subscription a while back may pay for it again before i start base to how multi-discipline affects me.)

  1. Full-Distance Base - Either Low vol w/ Pettit outdoors inserted somewhere in the week or as a tack on for the last weekly ride OR MID volume
  2. Sustained build low volume w/ FD Base Low volume swim and run workouts as it aligns with the 3on/1off week cycle of the cycling plans
  3. 40k tt low volume w/ the rest of FD base low volume S&R (as it lasts 12 weeks) and a little more before cuting almost everything else for week 7&8 of 40k spesh
  4. FD low vol Build
  5. FD low vol Spesh
  6. “You are an Ironman…”

My sport strengths in order of high to low: bike, run, swim
being that I have had injuries (running), I plan on trimming the RUN workouts to some degree keeping their weekly volume as low as possible (to the point where I still gain running fitness). This may allow my body to handle extra training stress from another sport, most likely cycling.

Question is should I go MID Volume for Base? I am pretty concerned that my fitness won’t carry over to the latter part of the season (when I rebuild)… based on how the base phase goes I can assess if to go low or mid for the rebuild and specialty.
I tend to fall right between LOW and MID volume for all plans (smh), like I’m scared of digging myself too much in MID but LOW is easier than perfect training stress… (hence the added Pettit tss) :woman_shrugging::woman_shrugging::woman_shrugging:

PS. Reasoning for not doing Full Distance BBS BS, specifically moving over to a cycling plan is that the IF for training and racing the 30k is much higher than anything touched on in any FD phase. Also will very likely get boring and will lose purpose for training.

my only addition would be why not use SSB instead of full distance base (with the FD swim/run). it carries over perfectly into sustained power build.

concerning volume, IMHO it’s better to go for low and enjoy some extra rest. you look at a pretty intense year, no point in burning yourself out early on.



Now this is coming from someone who doesn’t do full distance because of my respect for the distance. I can’t fully commit to the lifestyle, and i don’t enjoy paying for an event that I’ve under trained for. What I do know from my experience is that training like a triathlete year round makes my racing much more enjoyable. I would suggest to do as much run and swim volume as you can fit in. (Volume, not necessarily intensity) A solid tri base makes everything easier come race day.

So i would pick a hybrid plan that best fits your schedule and capabilities. Try to stick with full distance base volume for run and swim while doing a cycling specialty plan until after the tt, then switch to fd build and specialty afterwards. You’re doing lake placid which is a pretty difficult iron distance race.


Imho this is as much about your lifestyle as your ability to absorb training. I can handle about twice the TSS I take because the rest of my life is so demanding on my attention as much as my time.

I think pretty much everyone agrees it’s easier to start Low and move up than the other way around.

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I’d tend to agree with the suggestions above. Sweet Spot Base initially would seem to be a better fit with your long and short term goals and there’s no reason you can’t run and swim alongside that plan as well.

Stick to the low volume plans if you are unsure and add to them if you can rather than take on too much initially. You can always adjust as time goes on if your circumstances change.

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You guys are definitely right about starting low volume and adding in where see fit, external stress factors etc. thankful for the extra sets of eyes with all the suggestions…

@Bioteknik I can second the difficulty of Lake Placid lol… supposedly the toughest US bike and course

Interesting point to bring up, yes it would carry over well… I just am concerned with establishing the appropriate “specific” base?

main important diff between FDB and SSB (low vol) is the last workout of the week FD-few hours of endurance SS-more Over/Under and I am again concerned that it won’t carry over so well unless I add 30min of 65% to get that weekly endurance duration/stress. Also because I’m relying on this Base to carry me onto the ironman shouldn’t it perhaps be more specific, although I’m guessing there’ll more ftp gains via SSB over FDB. Thoughts on this…

Perk of doing FD base is the 3/1week that coincides with Swim and Run… Otherwise with SSB it may be helpful to adjust the workouts with 3/1 of Swim&Run
something to the tune of: Alternate Sweet Spot Base, Work : Recovery Week Layout though not ideal :man_technologist:

That’s a great tip (using the map on the Garmin watch to avoid looking at HR / Pace / zone etc etc), thanks Julian.

Following my post the other day wondered if anyone would mind posting their FTP, watts/kg and their HIM bike split. Just for my own curiosity.

Is anyone on here signed up for Ironman 70.3 Lanzarote in October?

Last HIM was during IM prep around end of IM build. In a local HIM with some wind and a rolling profile I rode a 2:31 on 260 FTP / 3.7 W/kg. I think my ride was around 180NP and for reference I swam a 31:xx and ran around 1:40.

I don’t know if its because the podcast has warped my sense of FTP but that seems a really low (and I mean that with no offence intended) for such an amazing bike time. I am at 253 with one more week of build and everything seems really easy now so I am expecting an increase when I next test. My last bike I just sneaked under 3 hours and I have never thought of myself as a decent cyclist.

That’s a really good position then! I’m always curious to see how I’d do at a non-draft legal longer race, but not having a tri/tt bike is the main reason… At a mere 5’8" I wonder what kind of cda I’m towing around.

I understand why you’re after the information but you won’t gain a great deal from it I think. People ride different sorts of bikes and make other different equipment choices, have vastly different positions on those bikes and are of different shapes and sizes. There can be a huge range of ride times from very unexpected power numbers, both high and low dependent on all those factors and more.

Aside from FTP being an exceptionally well marketed piece of pseudo science (albeit a sometimes useful one) it isn’t the be all and end all of long distance TT/triathlon. A very well conditioned rider who can hold a high percentage of their threshold will significantly out perform a rider who claims a high FTP but actually can’t hold anywhere near that for any length of time.

Your numbers are only really applicable to you as are everybody else’s. All you can do is try to get your power numbers up for the duration you are wanting to race over and alongside that make some good equipment and position choices.

One final thought - the best triathlon bike leg doesn’t produce the highest power numbers but gets round as fast as is sensibly possible using as little power as is needed - a subtle but significant difference which should pay dividends over the race as a whole. I pride myself on generally being in the top handful of bike splits in most races off the smallest number possible!


Check out BestBikeSplit, if you enter measurements from your bike fit it will give an estimated CdA

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