Part 2: What to Think First when Planning to do your First Ironman
By Vinnie Santana, Coach, ironguides.net
A very important point is considering the circumstances of your professional and personal life. The training for an Ironman, even at a moderate level, will take you much of your time and energy, so make sure your life is, in a way, stable and organized before you start your workouts.
Physically, you need to be “trained to train”, ie, have a minimum of experience and fitness to get on to your spreadsheet training with a good consistency. Develop a strategy with your coach in terms of training and results that are ideal for your profile. This will depend on your goals and experience in the sport.
Athletes seeking performance can for example “train your weak mode, but compete with strong mode.” For beginner athletes a safe way to train with a high load is to focus on the mode in which you there is more experience, because your body and technique will be used to it and injury problems will be less likely.
Our philosophy is to always have Triathlon as a lifestyle that brings positive points into the life of the athlete, whether physical, objectives or even as an escape from the stress of working life. For this reason, we suggest that beginner athletes evolve naturally into the sport, starting with short races to feel confident in participating in an Ironman.
The period varies depending on goals, lifestyle and sports history, but we believe that a minimum of three years in the sport will give you the physical ability, mental and training for a healthy and balanced way to support the routine to complete an Ironman.
High-performance athletes and of course more competitive only enter an Ironman to use it as a good test, and should be guided by results in shorter events. Try to make a good time at the distance of half Ironman. This will be a good test and will motivate you with training.
Another important point to be explained is that for high performance athletes, the performance in the Ironman is based on the performance of shorter events. Even if you have the training to complete an Olympic event or half Ironman, consequently, this will be working as the “base” for possible completion of Ironman.
A clear way to view this is to look at the history of athletes who have gained prominence in the Ironman races worldwide. They all had great success in short races. Chris McCormack (Macca) was world champion in 1997 in the Olympic distance, Craig Alexander (Crowie) for many years dominated the middle distance Ironman and was world champion in 2006 and 2011, Eneko Llanos, Dirk Bockel, Andreas Raelert and Rasmus Henning, are Olympic distance athletes.
So before you sign up for your first Ironman, make sure your goals are aligned with your experience and history in the sport.
Enjoy your training!
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