Ironman OR Half Ironman Training

Or BUY NOW up front for a bargain:

6 month plan £230 9 month plan £350

Sounds like a fabulous Birthday present for someone!!

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What equipment do I need to start the plan?

You will need the following to be able to complete the plan comfortably:

General Essentials: Heart rate monitor and GPS watch, both are useful to keep track of your training, fitness levels and progress.  Heart Rate is useful to train to as you can see fitness improving by the rate in which your HR reduces during the recovery period of a session.  The sessions given in the plan are structured in heart rate and therefore you can usually (depending on your watch), follow the session along from your watch and it will tell you if you are in the right zone when training so long as your zones are accurate in Training Peaks.

Swim Essentials: Swim suit, goggles, hat, access to a pool and open water as we get closer to race day.

Useful but non-essential kit to do the drills: pull buoy and hand paddles and optional fins (this will depend on whether your pool allows the use of the fins or not)

Bike Essentials: A well fitting bike (if you are unsure as to whether your bike fits, please seek advice or even better, a bike fit as this will ensure comfort for the longer rides and reduce chances of injury.  A helmet, and bike shoes, cycling clothing for winter training (this will help to motivate you out the door if you have adequate kit to train in.  (Waterproof jacket, winter gloves, over shoes, long legged tights or leg warmers and arm warmers, Gillet)

Useful but non-essential kit: A turbo trainer or similar (rollers, peloton bike, watt bike or access to the gym where you can use the static bike). This allows you to train indoors for more controlled environment and a more effective training session.  It can also be used on days when the weather is not conducive to training outdoors.

Extravagant but really useful!: Power meter or a turbo with power.  Training with a power meter is the absolute best way to get the most out of both your training time and effort. Unlike heart rate-based training, power allows us to measure the muscular demands of the effort instead of just the aerobic. Ideally, you want to have power on your bike so that you can utilise it for both outdoor and and indoor training.

Run Essentials: A pair or couple of pairs of decent trainers, right for your running gait (you may want to get a gait analysis done to ensure you have the correct shoes).  Remember that the lifespan of road running shoes is around 300-500miles (500-800km), and lightweight shoes tend to be between 250 and 300miles – keep a close eye on the wear and tear of them and replace them regularly.  Finally, warm clothing for winter training.

S&C Essentials: Set of resistance bands, swim cords (FINIS), light weights, Swiss ball, bench or chair

Non-essentials but useful: a barbell, Suspension trainer (TRX), kettle bells, medicine ball, slam ball

What do you class as a novice IM or HIM athlete?

To compete in a HIM an you should have completed at least one sprint triathlon, be able to swim continuously for 10minutes, cycle continuously for at least 1 hour and run continuously for at least 5km

To complete in a IM, an athlete should have completed at least one standard distance triathlon, and be able to swim continuously for 30minutes, cycle for at least 2 hours continuously and have ran a 10km continuously.

If you cannot do one of these things, let the coach know, you may be able to do a ‘pre-starter pack’ before you begin the training plan.

YOU are an athlete who is aiming to just finish the distance, with no goals or times in mind or may be unsure as to whether the cut off times will be a challenge for you.  You will be able to compete the IM by training for 10 hours on average per week, with your biggest weeks being upto 15hours in total and you are willing to dedicate that time to the cause.

What is an intermediate IM or HIM athlete?

YOU are an athlete with 2-3 years experience of racing at sprint or standard distance triathlons as well as having swam, biked and ran the distance of an HIM. To be on the intermediate plan for the HIM, you have already competed in a few HIM distance events and have perhaps finished the event in a time between 6-7:30 hours.  You are wanting to go under 6:30 hours for your next event.

An athlete should have completed a number of HIM distance events or have swam over 5km in training or a race, cycled100miles in 6-8 hours and or ran a number of half marathon races in 2:15hours or under.  You may not have already competed in an IM event itself but have had 3-4 years experience in the sport.  You are looking at a time of 13-15 hours.  You are willing to train for 12 hours per week on average with your biggest week going up to 16hours?

What is an advanced athlete?

An athlete is who is experienced and competitive in one of the three sports or triathlon itself.  You can already swim, bike and run the distance and have completed an IM already or a number of HIM in a competitive time of under 6 hours.  You want to improve your time or want to transfer your HIM time of under 6 hours into a competitive IM time of under 12 hours. You already train around 10-12 hours per week and have the time and dedication to increase that to 12-14 hours on average and upto 17 hours in heavy weeks.

I can’t swim can I still follow the plan?

I would recommend you give yourself a few months to learn to swim and get up to being able to swim 100m front crawl (preferably) before starting the plan.  Take some lessons to learn correct technique.  Once you are unto 100m continuous swimming, then you can start the plan confident that you will be able to follow the sessions.

What is CSS pace?

CSS stands for critical swim speed, it is defined as the theoretical fastest pace that a swimmer can maintain continuously without exhaustion, your aerobic swimming threhsold.  Your CSS is calculated from a 400m or yard Time Trial and your 200m or yard Time Trial.  Your CSS can be calculated here (you must be signed in to see this calculator)

How do I know what my Threshold Heart Rate  (ThHR) is for running/ biking?

You will do a test in the first two weeks to establish your HR zones. The run test is a 30min Time Trial where you run as hard as you can for 30mins, you will then take the average HR for the last 20mins of the run and that will give you your Threshold.  You can also get your threshold pace (average for the 30mins) from that test too.

For the bike, you must again do a 30minute all out effort on the bike, using the same formula as above, you can then calculate your Functional Threshold HR (FTHR) for the bike, this is usually around 8-10 beats below that of your run HR.

How do I know what my Functional Threshold Power (FTP) is for the bike? 

Using the same test above for the bike, using a power meter or turbo with power, you can calculate your FTP by taking the average from the last 20 minutes of the test and multiplying it by 95%, this will give you a good estimate of your FTP.  If you are only looking at FTP and not the HR, then you only need to do a 20minute all out effort.

Once you have calculated your FTP and FTHR for the bike and the run, you can then add them into you settings, where Training Peaks will calculate your zones.

The following calculator will calculate your FTP from your 20mins of effort please press Here

How do I adjust my zones in Training Peaks?

  1. Go into your profile, press  the settings icon and/or profile page will appear.
  2. 2. On the left hand side are some tabs, press the ‘zones’ tab and you can then enter your Threshold heart rate into the default settings.
  3. If you want to have HR zones for the bike, run and swim, then scroll down and press the ‘add’ button.
  4. You then select which discipline the zones you want to create.  Remember your bike threshold heart rate maybe lower than your run threshold heart rate.
  5. Remember to save the information.  This will adjust the zones in each of your sessions.

Please see the video to view how to adjust your zones.

Will I get coached sessions with this plan?

No, with this plan, you do the sessions in your own time.  You will have access to the Facebook Group page, where you will have the chance to ask others to join you on your ride/ swim or run.  It would be good to create a group where you can all meet up and do the sessions together.  This will be personal choice but certainly encouraged by the coaches in the group.  The group will be of all abilities, so you should be able to find someone who is similar ability to you.  Obviously, it will depend on the area where you live.  Please contact Rhian on if you would like to know who is in your area/ of your ability and she can put you in contact with anyone willing.

What is the purpose of the FB page?

This page is to encourage and motivate YOU and each other to train and also for you to have someone to share your journey with you.  You have entered into a big challenge and we know sharing this experience with people makes a big difference.  It can be lonely training for an IM or HIM, we want to help you share this experience.  Some of the athletes on the page maybe new to you and maybe competing in the same race, therefore, it is a chance to meet like-minded athletes exchange information, meet on race day or before.  The chance to ask questions, tell people about your trials and tribulations, share your highs and your lows.  Laugh and cry together!

It is also an opportunity for coach to share information about races, routes, nutrition, S&C, give you a boost when you need it, share their own experience and ask any questions that you may have about it!

If you have anymore questions, please contact Rhian on