The Ironman Training 2020 Thread

How does per 100yd pace differ to 100m for those that swim both?

easy continuous long swims, I swim at 1:55 / 100m or 1:45 / 100yds

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This could be quite a complicated question to answer, but short story: swim more.

The ifs and buts would be around overall frequency, skill level, how you do your sessions but for almost everyone who is training for a triathlon, until you are doing three sessions per leg per week, you’re short changing yourself somewhere. Strength and flexibility are great to add to that basic training week.

The good news is that at ~1:45/100yd it’s going to be technique and frequency more than volume, I’d be thinking more like three sessions per week (one technique, one tempo (1:55) intervals and one threshold (1:45) interval session). I used to think the long continuous swims were worthwhile, but they’re not.

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@tribuddha what % Critical Power do you use for your zones?

A post was split to a new topic: Saris H3 vs Wahoo Kickr18

Hi there, you might be better off posting here as it’s a broader question non-triathletes might be able to contribute to:

@mcneese.chad are you able to move this one?

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Done, and moved it into it’s own thread. Thanks for the cleanup help. :smiley:

Thanks Joe - I guess if I look back at my past few weeks I’ve managed three runs, three swims and 5-6 rides. I have to say I’m trying to be smart with not running too much though also - I just feel like, especially as a bigger guy it is so much more prone to injury… also as a roady the idea of cutting down to less than 8 hrs a week on the bike seems like I’m giving up part of myself ! :laughing:

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I basically set my goal for my first half distance with my current swim pace, so it isn’t a limiter to my target so much as I know I have huge room for improvement on it and any efficiency gained here makes the rest of the day easier

I have thought about it, but haven’t bitten the bullet on that yet. I would have to change gyms/pools (which I have been wanting to do for a bit anyways) but this may be the right time to try it.

It seems like the TR plans are pretty good on the tempo/threshold side, so maybe I’ll just work out my own set of technique plans to swap in for the long swims and just hit the three swims at 100%. Or do you have any recommendations on free technique swim workout plans?

Repeat after me “I am not a cyclist…I am a triathlete!” :joy:

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A private lesson will give you the all important someone-else’s-eye but I go to the SwimSmooth book for self-fixes. You don’t want to be fixing something that isn’t broke, so if you can’t get a lesson

I went on a Total Immersion weekend bootcamp. It made a huge difference to me,
I think SwimSmooth also do them

To me, out of the three IM disciplines, swimming is the greater quest of diminishing returns.

If you are are chasing the cut offs, get lessons, practise lots, drills, intervals etc. You’ll make big improvements. and will move towards 1hr 30 (ish)
if your 1hr 30 (ish)
, get use to swimming long distances with good form. The biggest blockers to IM Swimmers are technique and muscular endurance. This will get you another chunk of time. Get you down th the 1hr 10 (ish) mark (I spent a lot of time swimming with people training for the channel swim)

However, once there, magazines, blogs, and, coaches, promise the 1hr swim plan (type stuff). in reality very few age groupers swim an IM @ sub 1hr and the work to get there is huge.
BUT, to stay at the 1hr 10(ish) level, and even improving a little, takes very little effort.

The time saved chasing that elusive 1hr could be better spent on improving at the other 2 disciplines. Or using for recovery. The gains in overall time will be much greater than focusing on the swim

Just my N=1


If you have the swim endurance to complete the 1.9km swim and are time limited, better to Invest time to the bike and to the run imho.

I’m a slow swimmer (1:27 at IMAZ with a wetsuit last Nov) and am technique-limited but I have the endurance to do 3.8KM which ended up being 4.3 km per garmin on race day. (Yep sighting is important. ) I have taken group & 1:1 lessons before and for a few years went to Masters twice a week.
My experience is that I only improve if I swim 3/wk and then I’ll gain a few minutes but not 10-15.
I improved at pushing off the wall (pool split improved) but not so much at OWS.

I found that i quickly gain back my “speed” and endurance as soon as I swim 3/wk for a month and I maintain with a once/wk hour long lake swim in summer .
So being time-limited (I travel internationally for work) the 4hours/wk of swim was diverted to bike & run for a better return on investment. Think about gains you could get on Bike and Run with 4h extra/wk.


is there similar ones for this guidance for 70.3 races?

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Hi guys… Kimie here from Malaysia. currently training for Ironman 70.3 Lombok in July 2020. any of us heading there?

Main goal this year is to improve bike; to hit sub 3:00 and run; to be able to run the whole 21.1km, preferably below 2:15.

Started to use the plan builder and it gives me:
Half distance tri base LV - 8 weeks
Half distance tri build LV - 8 weeks
Half distance tri base LV - 4 weeks
Half distance tri LV - 8 weeks

my question here…

  1. would i benefiting more to follow this, or should i switch the 2nd base phase to another 4 weeks of build?
  2. anyone else might want to recommend to use other combination of training blocks?

Looks forward to your input!

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Im echoing what others are saying, it doesn’t seem that strength is your limiter, it’s probably your technique. Better technique will automatically lead to less fatigue during your swim sets and bring down Times overall. The thing with strength training is that it will get you to the pool with more fatigue in your swim system, making it even harder to swim with excellent form. It might also give you an excuse to slack on technique because strength.

Think of it like running with a backpack full of rocks. More volume and strength might make you a bit better at carrying those rocks. Improved technique is shedding those rocks.

I might add „swim better“. Adding volume without excellent form is a waste of time. Find someone to point out one or two elements in your stroke and start working on those with full commitment.

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I am assuming you’re new to tri. If so then just follow the builder guide. For you the base is of more benefit.

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not exactly new… been in the sport since 2013… 1st half iron distance in 2014.
This half iron in July would be my 10th race in that distance…
just starting to properly train with power… hoping to be able to improve further… before this it was all RPE…