Ironman on low volume training.

Mainly due to injury my training for IMA has been pretty poor. However, I am now in a position where my knee can tolerate an increase in training volume.
With IMA 8 weeks today my plan is to gradually increase long bike from around 3 hours to hopefully peak at around 5 hours in 6 weeks week time. With regards to running, its not realistic to expect to run whole marathon, so will incorporate a run/walk strategy in my training buiding up from current long run of 75 mins to hopefully a run/walk of 2.5 hours in around 6 weeks time.
Im not reaaly worried about swimming as I have done more swimming than I did last year and am swimming a bit faster too.
For those who have completed an Ironman on low volume training, is my training plan sound for a "get me round race plan", obviously not expecting peal performance .
I suspect a 10 day taper would be ok after this traing and not the normal 3 weeks would be required.
Any thoughts?


  • Pebble 2Pebble 2 ✭✭✭
    Foggy, I am no expert but, yes. The human body is capable of amazing things when the mind is right, you will get around and you might surprise yourself with your time.
  • I think you should aim to peak a bit higher on the bike if possible. If you are going to be out on the course for 6-7 hours, then in my mind, this is the sort of time you need to get to in training.

    However, having said that, you have been unlucky with injury from the sounds of things, and if that is an unrealistic target, then do what you can. I would suggest you focus the majority of your efforts on cycling in the coming weeks. This is because you are planning on run/walking the marathon anyway, and with a recovering knee, cycling is far more of a low impact sport than running is. If time permits, could you do two longish bikes a week? One long one on the weekend and then one at about 75% of that distance mid week?
  • Mike, I know 6 to 7 hours would be better, but I am worried that increasing volume too quickly would increase chance of getting injured again. I can do 2 long bikes a week as I normally have a day off mid week, but would still have to fit long run in.

    I probably could do a basic week like this.

    Mon, Rest or swim
    Tue.Run am
    Wed. Swim and long bike
    Thur. Easy bike pm
    Fri. Run am
    Sat. Medium bike.
    Sun. Swim and long run/ walk
  • Having trained for an ultra with a run/walk strategy my advice would be to decide on your timings (how much of each you're going to do) and practice it, rather than running and walking when you feel like it. A watch with an interval timer that beeps is very useful for this.
  • Foggs , you can make it on that volume dude , Mikes right that getting the odd ride at 6 or 7 worth it but last year I did a 6.20 bike split with only 2 6 hr rides before the race (and therefore ever!) .

    If you are going to run walk then 2.30 on the run probably a maximum , you might want to think of even lowering this if it means you can get some more bike volume in?
  • Cheer up Foggy, you'll still finish ahead of me :)
  • 7 hours bike training! That's a kiler for recovery and far too much for somesome coming back from injury!!!

    Runs over 2 hours are where the real body damage is done. If you are coming off injury, try a brick every time to get the aerobic benefit and then running when tired.

    I think we've seen a umber of people perfom with determination on very low volumes
  • Wanders in ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

    ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, wanders out again
  • Which is why i put the caveat beneath it gumps...If foggy felt it was possible to do that then cool. As he has said, its not, and yes he will be fine on far less training. Good luck mate, see you out there.
  • I will be adding some time each week to my long bikes and runs and hopefully build my distance, but time is not on my side as its less than 8 weeks now.
    I need to arrive at the start uninjured, so will not ramp up to quick. If I am undertrained i sill have a chance of getting round.
    Thanks for your input.
  • Ahhh, a serious training thread at last :o)
  • NO!!!! Lack of serious training thread.!!
  • <lurk waiting to crib "training" plan>
  • please remove this thread, as it may encourage me to bring my bike and wetsuit along to my lazy holiday in austria.
  • Foggy - did you get the bronze medal for IMA sandbagging ?

    What's your excuse for the Vit ? :D

    I intend to perfect my training free regime !
  • you did very well on it this year roomie
  • Planning on going sub-3 for the Vit, assuming of course I don't DNF ;-)
  • DazDaz ✭✭✭
    Hi Foggy,

    I think anyone can get round an ironman well on 8-10hrs/week average as long as you plan it well.
    Don't worry to much about the distances now. If I was you I'd def work up th ebike distance to a good 5-6hrs if poss BUT dont go hard. Just get yourself mentally used to the distance, practise nutrition and most importantly get the engine used to running low on fuel.
    As for the run, I'd suggest doing the two-run/day strategy. A couple of 9-11milers (am and eve) will be less damaging than one long run....and you can get the muscles used to working fatigued.
    Endurance Coach @
    Elite Ironman, Ultra Trail Runner
  • too late Daz ... he finished it last Sunday!
  • Foggy,

    Can you give me an idea of the number of daily hours you do on each modality?

    Thank you
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