10 Golden Rules Of Training For An IRONMAN Triathlon

IRONMAN Triathlon is the toughest one-day endurance race in the World which consists of 3.8kms swimming, 180 km cycling and 42.2 km running to be finished in under 17 hours and for some Race Courses even 16.5 hours. The finisher of the race gets the title of an IRONMAN , which can be implied by the toughness of the race.

India is having it’s first IRONMAN Branded Triathlon race on 20th October in Goa which is Half IRONMAN or 70.3 as one has to cover these number of miles to finish the race and the distances and times are halved compared to a Full IRONMAN.

If you are looking to train for a full or a Half  IRONMAN then these 10 Golden rules will help you perform at your optimum level.

  1. Swimming – Swimming is the first discipline of the race needs good attention as you are supposed to swim in Open waters which can be a lake or an Ocean. Make sure you have good open water exposure before the race as swimming in open water is way different from swimming in a pool.
  2. Cycling – IRONMAN is said to be a cycle race as this discipline has the maximum distance to be covered out of the three disciplines, so takes the bulk of the time in training as well as the race. Having a bicycle fitted to one’s body is very important as that will help in optimum power production helping in getting a good speed plus less Fatigue of the muscles.
  3. Running – Running is the last discipline and requires you to run on tired legs from cycling, which becomes quite challenging as legs get used to the circular motion while pedalling and transiting from the bike to the run requires practice, Doing Brick workouts which are workouts in which Cycling is immediately followed by running needs to be prioritized.
  4. Nutrition – Nutrition is often said as the fourth discipline of a Triathlon cause you can’t move your body without energy just like you can’t run a car without fuel. Our bodies have Glycogen stores which are the prime source of energy and can last till 1.5 – 2 hours of strenuous movement, for an average athlete Half IRONMAN Race takes  5-7 hours and a full IRONMAN takes 12-16 hours to finish so replenishing those glycogen stores is very vital for finishing the race.
  5. Transition Training – Training for the transition is often a neglected part which has it’s own importance. Transition in Triathlon is basically the time taken to move from one discipline to other like time taken from finishing swimming to starting cycling and likewise from finishing cycling to starting running at pre-mentioned spots. Generally, you have to change clothes and carry your nutrition with you so keeping a calm mind is very important as one mistake in transition can prove very harmful.
  6. Training the Mind – Mind is the biggest muscle that you have and training the mind makes you stronger and ready to face adverse situations in life as well as the race. IRONMAN is a 70% mental and 30% physical race which states the importance of being mentally strong.
  7. Family Support – Being a very demanding sport, you need support from family and friends to train for all those vigorous hours, miss family events, miss social outings. Make it a point to communicate this with your loved ones and do give time to them after the race.
  8. Finances – The Sport is an expensive one from the Race Registration, buying swim gear, pool membership, cycle, cycling accessories, run gear, nutrition and Coaching just to name the important part so be ready to keep budgets for everything as going overboard is very easy.
  9. Motivation – Being self-motivated to train for these races can’t be overlooked as these races are not the one where you can train by someone else’s force. You need to have the will and motivation to train as the time taken to prepare is high.
  10. Coaching – The importance of being guided by someone experienced and technically strong is vital as being a 3 discipline sport there is a lot of technicality involved in training, nutrition plus buying the right equipment like the cycle and gears, which can easily save you a lot of time and money.

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Triatholon marathon swimming cycling ironman


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