Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Ironwoman Wednesday - Training Load

Ironwoman Wednesday is a weekly linkup on a variety of triathlon-related topics (that will be announced the week before). It is similar to Tri Talk Tuesday that a few other bloggers started, but the more people talking about triathlon the better!

Gabi at Lean Green Island Girl, Michelle at Ironwoman Strong and I are all training for Ironman Louisville. It is really exciting (and encouraging) to be sharing this journey with these two amazing women!

Today's topic is training load!

 Training is fun!

First, I am going to start this post by saying that you should watch this video if you haven't already. While it is not OUR training load, it gives you a pretty good idea of what Ironman training entails and how much mileage you put in over a span of 6 months. (And we're definitely doing something like this next time!)

Now that you watched that, I'm going to talk about our training load. I have done bi-weekly training recaps since we started training on March 10th. Here they all are, if you missed any of them:

Weeks 1-2
Weeks 3-4
Weeks 5-6
Weeks 7-8
Weeks 9-10
Weeks 11-12
Weeks 13-14
Weeks 15-16
Weeks 17-18
Weeks 19-20

Our training plan is 24 weeks long and while we have put in a lot of miles, we definitely did not do ALL of our planned workouts. Life happens. However, I think that we have put in enough hard work and our training will see us through on race day. I have said to a few people that this is the most prepared that I have ever felt for an endurance race, including all of our marathons and our long distance triathlons.

 Putting in some miles on the bike

So what exactly has our training entailed? As most of you know by now, Mondays are always (except once during this training cycle) our off days. We have some sort of training planned for the other six days of the week, except in some rare instances when we have a second off day.

How many days of each discipline has varied throughout our training but for the most part we swim two-three times a week, run three times a week and ride three times a week. We didn't have a brick workout every week, but as race day gets closer that is now a must. Even if we didn't do a brick workout there were at least one to two days when we would have to do some sort of double workout.

 Racing has been a part of training too

Over the last 20 weeks and 3 days of training, we have put in a TON of miles.

Swim - 67.09 miles
Bike - 2,106.43 miles
Run - 476.27 miles

We still have a little less than four weeks to go until race day, and even though we have sort of started taper, we have a few more big workouts left.

All of those workouts and miles take up a lot of time during our week. So far, we have trained for approximately 244 hours and 28 minutes. That doesn't include the time it takes to get ready for workouts, to drive to specific locations, etc.

 Thumbs up for all those training hours!

I have mentioned that most things have fallen by the wayside during training. We don't clean our house often, we don't always make it to everything that we are invited to (and some people make us feel guilty about that), we are WAY behind on our DVR (we finally finished The Following a few weeks ago) and there are many nights when we don't feel like making dinner because we are too tired.

As long as we go to work (which luckily for me, I am a 10-month employee and for this training cycle I will have had two full months off), make sure our pets are taken care of and that our house isn't in complete disarray, that's usually the best we can do.

 I can tell he's upset we're leaving him for a 6+ hour ride

Does that mean that I would give this all up for a clean house, more time to stay up late, etc.? No. I have mentioned that this will not be our only Ironman. We may not do one every year, but I love this lifestyle. I wouldn't change it for a thing, even if that means we have dog and cat hair tumbleweeds in our living room all the time.

The training, the miles, the hours. They are all worth it to me.


  1. I am in awe of those training for an ironman distance race. The time commitment is so daunting to me (let alone the actual workout!). Impressive!! (p.s. cute dog)

    1. The time was a big adjustment once we really got into training, we had never trained for 15+ hours a week before! And thanks, I think he is pretty cute too :)

  2. Great insight into what it takes! Someday I would like to, but can't right now with the small kids and the job, but I love reading about it to mentally dream!

  3. "I love this lifestyle. I wouldn't change it for a thing ..." <-- YES! It's tough to make time for things outside of training, but when there's a big race on the docket, decisions have to be made. I feel like my apartment is always dirt; my sister actually referred to it as a "triathlete war zone." Ha!

  4. I can't believe people make you feel guilty! You are training for THE most intense event ever, and your training is a priority. I admire all of the hard work and dedication you've put in!

  5. The required training for IM is so overwhelming. I just finished IMLP and so enjoying a much needed training break right now. I was very dedicated to my plan, so I will not be missing the super early mornings and two-a-days!! As of now, I don't think I will do another IM. That could change, but I will focus on shorter distances and having a bit more flexibility in my schedule. One thing I did do during my IM training, which I highly recommend for your future IM trainings, was to get a bi-weekly cleaning service. It was so awesome and alleviated some undue stress!

  6. Your training is looking good Jamie. I had to transfer out of Louisville into Maryland after a bike wreck with a truck on July 5, and then missing 2-3 weeks of training. Best of luck, hope these milder temps hold out through August.

    1. Oh no! I hope you are alright! We know how bike crashes go. Good luck in Maryland! (And I hope you are right about the mild temps!)