1980s = Marathon, 2010 = Ironman, what next?

In the 80s, Marathon was all the rage. In fact, it was regarded as the extreme sports achievement of the day.

Now, marathon isn't such a big deal. It's just the last 30% of your Ironman race.

Times move on, now Ironman has replaced Marathon as the extreme sport du jour but it, too, will have its time.

What comes next?

Comments

  • i agree with you but i'm struggling to think what it could be..........i suppose if i could i could make some big bucks in setting it up.....

    maybe something involving ulotra running and mountain peaks.........

  • Something like this...

    http://www.himalayanguides.com/marathon_trail_running_race_kanchenjunga.php

    ...but maybe a 20 day back-to-back like the TdF??

  • mountain ultras - c 100miles - seem to be the new challenge in terms of "hardness".  that or multi-day endurance events in extreme terrain - such as the 6633 Ultra in the Arctic.

    or maybe Decaman, or Double-Deca, or the new Trenta-Deca - but I'd rather shoot my brains out than do 30 IM back to back

     

  • I said the same to my OH a few months back, she suggested that I only thought IM was the current big thing, cos me and all my mates were involved.
  • Extreme snooker?
  • To get to the mass popularity of marathon running or IM, it'd need to be something you could do in a day, something that could be done anywhere in the world (within reason) and something that didn't cost an absolute fortune to do (IM isn't cheap, but it's affordable compared with (say) sailing.  Ultra running probably fits the bill best, but it won't be a 20 day event.

    As for trenta-deca, I'm with FB - I'd rather shoot his brains out than do 30 IM back to back.

  • Ultras in extreme conditions? Like Badwater

  • "As for trenta-deca, I'm with FB - I'd rather shoot his brains out than do 30 IM back to back."

    image

     

  • xine267 wrote (see)

    Ultras in extreme conditions? Like Badwater

    most of the more extreme ultras now require qualification points - they're not just rock up and give it a go type events.  that kind of sorts the chaff from the wheat so only those who have shown a certain level of ability get a chance to race but sadly it also makes getting an entry a lottery which many of these events now operate.

  • I agree with Mr Cheerful  image

  • I still the Everest marathon without ropes made sense... by 2030, the fat girls from the office will be doing it in pink tutus and gorilla outfits

  • Form an orderly queue, melds.  Obviously FB gets first go.

  • The extreme urban comps are getting very popular.

    Urban multi-day extreme sports events.

    Friday Night - Sprint and/or navigational challenge
    Saturday - Endurance Day - Biking, running with challenges
    Sunday - Marathon with obstacles

  • Adventure racing with ever increasing distances over a long weekend.



    Multiple marathons 4 in 4, multiple day cycle events



    Ultra running is nothing new, I was doing 100 milers 25 years ago.



    Long distance swimming events seem to be becoming more popular.



    In reality your limited to something which can be done in a long weekend, anything longer is going to be limited in popularity.
  • Park Run?

  • I'm imagining a post-apocalyptic future where all the fossil fuels have run out and the London Marathon is sponsored by BP.  Everyone's plugged into a manual treadmill and the winner is the person who can generate the most electricity over 2 hours of running.

    If Richard Branson's reading this, please don't steal my idea.  Cheers.

  • Mad Max on the 'Mill ?





    I'm thinking it will be adventure racing. They're already getting quite popular. I don't mean the extreme 7 day ones where any sleep taken adds to your time - but the one or two day events. Accessible to most people over a weekend.
  • PhilPub wrote (see)

    I'm imagining a post-apocalyptic future where all the fossil fuels have run out and the London Marathon is sponsored by BP.  Everyone's plugged into a manual treadmill and the winner is the person who can generate the most electricity over 2 hours of running.

    If Richard Branson's reading this, please don't steal my idea.  Cheers.

    Phil - that sounds a bit like 15 Million Merits from Charlie Brooker's Black Mirror series!

  • fat buddha wrote (see)
    xine267 wrote (see)
    Ultras in extreme conditions? Like Badwater

    most of the more extreme ultras now require qualification points - they're not just rock up and give it a go type events.  that kind of sorts the chaff from the wheat so only those who have shown a certain level of ability get a chance to race but sadly it also makes getting an entry a lottery which many of these events now operate.

    Ahh, I suppose that's a good thing. The risk of serious injury for the unprepared on a course like Badwater must be huge.

  • Oh!  Maybe I should read Charlie Brooker, if his brain works anything like mine!  image

    *edit* Oh it's a TV series.  D'oh! Maybe I should read some Charlie Brooker anyway.

  • If made me think of that Black Mirror episode too Xine. Apparently Charlie is now a regular runner. Do you think he comes on here?
  • Sussed Runner - If he does it will be interesting to see what episodes are inspired by some of DF3's threads!

    Phil - read some Charlie Brooker and watch the series too, it's really good image

  • How many people actually do Ironman distance events - I get the impression it's loads because I know a few (in real life not just you lot) but there aren't that many races are there so it can't be as popular as I'm imagining ?

    I reckon there is scope for some harder cycling sportives to become popular.  Take the Marmotte in the Alps that's gone from being able to go down in the week of the event and sign up a few years ago to people staying up all night to register because it literally fills up in a few years.   The likes of the Marmotte or one I'm doing this year in the Pyrennees are hard but there is no real challenge about completing them in the time limits for anyone that trains - a fit club cyclist should be ~8 hours (or less) for the Marmotte - personally I'd like to see some harder ones where those kind of riders are up against it just to finish.   

  • just my opinion but .. ironman is piss easy, especially if you arent after a sub 12 hour.  As most of you know, I was a fat git a year or 2 ago - did some training and hey presto - a fecking ironman, nothing too hard about it really, got a time of just over 12:30 = pissed off so i signed up for my first ultra - 2 weeks after my first IM - 70 miles  , job done with NO ultra training - it hurt a bit after 50 miles or so but still easyish, now the next step for me is to run a 100 miler in less than 24 hour and the double iron both which i'll do in June but after that it seems theres not a lot of different stuff to do in the UK, a harder IM?  a longer run? both doable, but fun? well its the same shit just a bit harder. some one said about the points awarded ultras - thats why im doing the SDW100, i get a few points for the UTMB that last for a couple of years iirc so if i cant find the next challenge ill just race another qualifier for mont blanc. or go the other way and do sprints like i was meant to do this year image

  • a few years !  I meant a few hours.   

  • Interesting thread.  Following on from what DK said I think folk tend to move on to doing there own thing rather than one day or one off challenges.  There are training plans to get you through 100m runs or 10k swims etc. do the training and you'll pretty much finish the event.  That's what the success of the IM is built on, as hard as it may or may not be the overwhelming majority finish.  You don't see events selling out in seconds where only 1 in a 100 finish.  Are there any?

    Perhaps the question shouldn't be 'what's the next big thing' but should be 'will it be worth doing?

  • take a plane to 20 thousand feet skydive into a desert run 100 miles to a lake

    swim 10 miles across the lake where you build a log cabin from scratch

    plant your own food and live as a hermit for  a year.  

    Then swim back across the lake to the adventure park buy yourself an ice cream and relax.

    or you could do an ultra.

  • From where I look at it, once you have the endurance base that an IM gives you, going longer is not as big a challenge as going faster.

    If they had some IMs that had more aggressive cut-offs (14 hours?) they would inevitably get more prestige value, which is what we are all after at the end of the day. What's the first question you ask someone who has done the Norseman? What colour T-shirt did you get, of course. The fact that even a white t-shirt at Norseman is epic, its the prestige of the black that drives people.

    That's not to say I don't want to do some long endurance events again, but is a Double IM harder than an 11 hour IM? I don't know, I haven't done either, and comparing these sorts of things, especially using "hardness" as the measure is pretty much meaningless. But I do know that is I was asked to choose to do one of them I'd choose the double IM as the easier option for me. (2 consecutive IMs, not double swim, double bike etc, that sounds hellishly boring!)

    I am an Ironman, but could I ever become a quick olympic distance athlete, or a sub 3 hour marathon runner? I doubt it, because I'm too lazy to push myself into the hurtbox in training and racing. So going long is where I can get my prestige.

    Am I a better athlete than a 2.15 Olympic distance athlete? Of course not, but the 'public' might think so because I have done an IM, regardless of the time i took to do it in. The perception of distance being hard is wrong, but long may it continue from my ego's point of view, even though deep down I know speed is where the challenge lies.

    Once the public twig, then marathons, IMs, double IMs will fade away and they will understand speed is harder than plodding on.

    Good debate though, carry on!
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