The Ironman Training Thread 2023

The question is… what the time what you were expecting?
Thats all what matters.
my NP on NC 70.3 was 160. I saw some people pushing more NP than me… only to post slightly faster times… (mine was 2:39). At the end that was on the ball park of What I was aiming (probably few minutes over)

It is really hard to tell, but more aero would of course be desirable. BBS usually gives me an estimate for CdA in the mid to low 0.2’s, which leaves room for improvement. I do however struggle to identify any low hanging fruits. My front end is only 4mm above minimum height, I’ve got an aero helmet, sleeved suit, deep rims and a disc cover (which I did not run in Lahti). Further improvements would certainly require plenty of Chunging and fiddling with my position and I am not sure I’ve got time for that.

What baffles me is that my relative performance seems to be the worst on medium rolling courses. On flat courses I do okay, with a lot of climbing I do okay. In between I seem to go backwards (and it is where I usually see the biggest difference between BBS prediciton and actual split). It was shocking in Copenhagen last year, where I would hang with a legal paceline on the flat half, even taking a few pulls, but going out the back immediately when the course turned inland and onto light rolling terrain.

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Well I’ve signed up for IM Wales. Last did FD in 2019. Part of my 50th year round the sun. Due to weight issues I’ve been prescribed Ozempic. Has anyone got any experience of trying whilst on this kind of medication - either for weight loss or as a diabetic?

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Congratulations, great 50th birthday present :slight_smile:

I don’t know about weight loss drugs I’m afraid, and I would email Ironman wales to check that I wasn’t breaking the rules of the race by taking it.

If you’re significantly overweight, I’d start training early and easy, correcting dietary issues as much as feasible. I’ve never achieved what GPS call a healthy weight range, so again I won’t advise there except to say that you shouldn’t avoid fuelling your workouts.

What’s your recent training like?

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Thanks Joe! An IM 70.3 2 years ago (34 min/2:50/2:05) and a few trips out to Mallorca using Climbing Road Race as prep since. Very familiar with TR etc and was on the beta of the adaptive training software. Know my way around a build. Have London Marathon next year as a bit of prep which worked well for me last time.

I’m one of these people that put on weight at the drop of a hat and as I get older it just doesn’t shift. I have over 30% body fat (previously validated scale with a dexa ) which has crept up over the last few years by a few %. You wouldn’t know it by looking at me, I’ve got a big frame and carry it well, but it’s simply not healthy to have this much visceral fat.

If I tell you I have been around the block and tried everything with weight loss, believe me I have. Ozempic seems to be working well for me with nice gradual weight loss, but I’ve only tried a few low intensity sessions at the moment.

I am sure there are diabetics that race with Ozempic. Nothing I can see on the IM site. I’ll keep this thread updated as I find out more.

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In a full distance, what TSS, IF & Time have you guys biked and still run well?

Know there is this chart:

I have raced 3 fulls so far - Ironman UK 22, Ironman Wales 22, Ironman France 23
In all 3 I have massively underperformed in the run.

There were:
Ironman UK - 294 TSS (0.72 IF) / 5hr 36min / 239NP - OK Run
Ironman Wales - 284 TSS (0.75 IF) / 5hr 06min / 246NP - DNF on the Run
Ironman France - 266 TSS (0.73 IF) / 4hr 58 / 241NP - Walked the last 10km

So on paper not super overbiking. Just feeling a little lost.

Racing Ironman Italy on Saturday. the bike should be fast, Thinking sub 4hr 30min.
Just want my run to reflect the training for a change.

I know that feeling.

Yeah even with a lot of TR experience, full distance training and racing is a different beast. Don’t be afraid to turn down the intensity, tomorrows training is more important than todays.

I think the chart is a good guide, mostly for newbies though. Once you know your long course your own judgement comes in more - from your numbers though I’d be thinking aim for 0.72 at most.

Execution and nutrition matter a lot though, so check how often you went into the red at each on the swim and bike, variability index (difference between NP and AP), what went right and wrong with fluids in particular.

All three of those bike courses are around 24-2500m iirc Italy is about half that so you will feel fresher on the run in any case.

Edit - hang on, is that IM France as in Vichy? Those numbers dont make sense for Nice do they? Less time, less stress, worse run than UK.

I hesitate to talk about pace, but on what basis are you setting your expectations for the run?

Thanks, yes that’s the hard part about assessing a Triathlon performance.
So many factors need to stack on top of each other for a good race on the day and with one wrong move it all comes tumbling down.

Think I am just getting hung up on bike pacing as it is the easiest factor to look into post-race.
One of form on the day, limiting burn matches, fueling or hydration is probably actually what I need to rectify but can get away with in a 70.3

This flatter Italy course should at least make it easier to control a few more variables.

It is Ironman France, as in Nice. But the normal bike course is around 10km short.
But why the run was so bad that day is what I can’t work out. Suspect form on the day was to blame in this case. had raced a 70.3 2 weeks before and post-race felt really rough for a week (not sure if that was the chicken or the egg though).

Running expectation is based on Half IM runs, some long training sessions & how other competitors compare over the 2 distances.
For example typical HM off the bike of around 1hr 17.5min vs Best Marathon off the bike of 3hr 10min. So a 35-minute delta.
Think a 20min delta should be possible in a well-executed race.

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Yeah and that sounds reasonable target to me, it’s building the all day endurance to be able to avoid that fade that’s the thing. Maybe five more minutes on the bike to save fifteen on the run is a strategy worth trying?

At your level I wouldn’t know but for me a 4h+1h brick is where I gauge how strong my IM run is, which iirc is something a few old coaches liked. It seems like a lot of Pros take years to get the run right so you shouldn’t be too harsh on yourself.

And, magic shoes of course :wink: Good luck at Italy that was one on my to do list :it:

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I’m facing the prospect of having no bike access in November, which offers an opportunity for a block exclusively dedicated to running.

Has anyone experimented with a single sport block? Any tips?

I did it more like 6-8months, so not as relevant

Some of my Lessons Learned

  1. Significant diet change needed for low HR only running
  2. Keep overall load moderately high in autumn
  3. Even non-injury body issues interrupt run plans easily

Any chance you can increase swimming?

Some benefits;

  • Knowing I can run six days a week, but I have to commit a lot to it
  • 321 running can be boring but psychologically easier to get out the door
  • I like the Galloway method but it’s harder running, not easier

Interesting - for 1., I assume reduced calorie intake?

That would be an increase from zero… :upside_down_face: (certainly an option, though)

Triathlon has very much taken a backseat to focusing on running + bike + strength work

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Been pretty absent from here this year due to injuries but finally was able to race this last weekend at Santa Cruz 70.3. Going into the race I wasn’t really expecting a lot. Mainly doing it as a good race training day heading into Ironman Cali.

Swim - 28:32

This is the time Ironman had for me but my gps time was 29:51. Not sure what happened for the big difference. But felt decent in the water and feel like working on my technique is getting me back to the 27-27:30 min swims I was doing before Covid.

T1 - 3:48

Bike - 2:13:38

One of my biggest concerns is always my speed to power on the bike. It seems others that do the same power as me just go faster. And the bike is where I really need to make time from the swim and try to put some hurt on the runners. Been putting lots of focus and work on shrugging my shoulders and keeping my head down to be smaller for the wind. Felt pretty comfortable, averaged 264 watts with a np of 274. Pretty happy with the speed, feel like keeping the shoulders in and head down is faster and is more comfortable. Now to keep working on that along with increasing power. A goal for next few years is to get closer to a 300 watt average for a 70.3.

T2 - 1:40

Run - 1:26:38

The run was my biggest worry this year. Lost 2 months of running early in the year because of foot, which made me transfer out of St. George and CdA. I definitely started out a little hot and it hurt me a little on the last 3 miles. But actually didn’t feel bad and for an ugly non runner like myself, a 6:30 average gives my confidence. Still have lots of work to do on my form and endurance for Ironman but it’s a step in the right direction.

Overall 4:15:05
12th overall and 5th age group.

Now focus is all to Ironman Cali which is 5.5 weeks out. Looking forward to it after the horrible experience in the 105-106 heat CdA was a few years ago.


What is your height and weight? At 6’2, 165-170 lbs I’ve gone 2:10-2:15 quite often on 240-250avg. and I have some issues with low back that makes me not have the most slick position.

Just providing a reference point - I agree, on your watts you could go faster assuming you’re not extremely tall.

Regardless though, very nice race!

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I’m not a tall guy. I stand 5 foot 9 and weight is usually around 155-160. Here are a few photos from Santa Cruz.

You should definitely either contact an aero specialist (Jim Manton maybe since you’re out west?), or I did quite a bit of virtual work with Matt Bottrill a couple years ago and I can’t recommend him enough.

Eyeball, that position looks good to me, but you’ve definitely got some free speed to pick up given your size, without question.

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How many weeks?

Thanks. I’ve thought about going to see Jim. He’s not to far from me, about a 16 hour round trip drive. I’ve looked at Matt’s virtual service as well but know that seeing someone in person is definitely best.

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Congratulations and welcome back!

But please, do not use the terms “6:30” and “ugly non runner” in the same sentence, paragraph, etc. you’re making this 9:30 guy wondering what I need to call myself :laughing: