Full Iron Distance Training For Half Iron Distance Race?

by Tina

I've entered Ironman 70.5 Wimbleball in June 2014 and the realisation of the task ahead has set in so I've decided to train for full iron distance to ensure I can comfortably complete the half iron distance...would you agree this is the right strategy or overkill? Any advice would be appreciated.

Intelligent Triathlon training replies:

You’re not alone in this dilemma. People often worry about their ability to complete the distance of these longer events, more than the time they might achieve.

The most appropriate training for a half-ironman very much depends on what you are trying to achieve from these three options:

• To 'get round' the 70.3,
• To get round in a certain time,
• To race it for your fastest time.

If you want to get round and enjoy the day out, and are not worried too much about time, then a bit of overkill won't do you any harm, if time permits you to be able to do the extra training.

However, if you have a target time in mind, especially for a particular discipline, I would recommend adjusting the programme to reflect this goal. Most programmes are written with the intention of enabling someone to complete the distance and this involves a degree of over distance training, which is not overkill.

If you want to race and get the best possible time you can, then I would definitely recommend training for the 70.3 specifically.

If you are starting now, and you intention is the former, you have time to start slowly. You can then later in the season decide that actually you do want to achieve a time, and then adjust the training to suit. This works because you will inevitably be building endurance in the early stages, which will be required whatever your aim.

Good luck and enjoy the training, whatever you decide on!

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