How bad were you...

...1 year before your first IM?

101 to 120 of 256 messages
24/06/2008 at 21:52
Good luck for Dublin - considered it as my cousin is going but I can't jusity the cost.
24/06/2008 at 21:54
Thanks I'm going to need it. Would have been fun to see you. GFB will be there as well as her sister is running it. Flights are pretty cheap if you get in quick
JD.    pirate
24/06/2008 at 21:55

there's many pirates in their 50s and perhaps older who do IM.

if you're interested in training advice i suggest you look and ask on the IMCH thread.  useful types like rosey et al won't have the time to follow threads repeat their advice on every thread. 

24/06/2008 at 21:55
I hope to see you there LE? My flights are booked for Dubbers and training going well so far. 15 miles on sunday and no ill effects - could have done 26 easy! Erm.....
24/06/2008 at 22:02
Well at least you are past half way!    I'll be there JB. I have bought my ticket, booked the hotel, and entered the race... now all I have do is actually work out how I am going to do 26.2 miles. Did 8 miles last Sunday verty slowly. Would  have been fine if not for a niggling thigh. Must get in to see physio. 
Edited: 24/06/2008 at 22:02
24/06/2008 at 22:05
Is it your first? My second. Hoping my poor knees will hold out.
24/06/2008 at 22:11

ratbag was in his 50s, and had a phobia about water, and was in the first bunch of nowhere-to-ironman in 6 months back in 2004/5.

i guess that most people in the nowhere-to-iroman gang are mid thirties to mid forties.

i'd guesstimate that once you got above 55ish, you'd need to be pretty fit and naturally talented to do it in one year.

somebody with a few years running background (not necessarily marathons, just running) should be able to do it in a year (which is what you have) until well into their early 50s.

key thing is to not waste the time you have, if you want to do it.  don't do s*d all until 12 weeks before the race, because you found a "12 week training programme" in some book or something.  start swim training with a coach now; get a bike and make your weekend rides 10-15-20-25-30 miles etc.  (you can build up faster on a bike), and run steadily.

consistent training, gradually increasing the load over the next 12 months, is what will get you there.

oldest people doing the race are well old.  there's usually somebody in 75-80 category in most races.

24/06/2008 at 22:24


I do have a few ishoos to work through:

1 I can't ride a bike

2 At all

3 Swimming is rubbish but I think I can crack that

Base level of fitness ok - but need to shift some bacon probably.

Will ponder options.  

JPenno    pirate
24/06/2008 at 22:29

If you can do the distance in the 75-80 category you are almost guaranteed a place at Kona if you finish. That would be the only time I would ever be capable of getting near a place.

Currently having done a few marathons, loads of halfs, a couple of 5k swimathons and a few tris upto olympic and a 50 mile Mountain Bike race.

I am doing IMCH next year with a goal of going under 13 hrs. I have a couple of events left this year and then intending to do a serious base building over the winter and then increase the distances from Feb/march onwards.

Anyone else in Cheshire/Merseyside looking for training partner drop me a line

25/06/2008 at 07:06

Jpenno - I'm in cheshire/manchester area (rixton to be precise ) but I suspect that I'll be WAY too slow for you..

 Tutu Much - sounds like something my OH would say!  Actually he's been ok about it.. I just got the "don't you think you should try something shorter first"... I've got one of work colleagues advising me on bikes as don't want to shell out a fortune to start with!  It's seem to have got in my head now.. if you know what I mean..  Last thing that did that was the Snowdonia marathon, and I completed that last year!

Azacara - I'm also 5ft so I'm glad I'm not the only wee one.

Biggest problem is I need to finish my degree next year (OU not normal student, and full time job hence the name) but I'm thinking...sprint by tthe end of they year.. half-ironman by the end of 2009 and full..2010!  

Dark Vader    pirate
25/06/2008 at 07:55

Now I've done an IM... here is a little bit of feedback for those considering it, taking into account where I started from.  I'm 43, in case that is of relevance.

Swim   I started from nothing.  I hadn't even swum 25m in a pool.   Really don't enjoy swimming.  It was just something that got in the way of getting on the bike.  I am not very good at it, and just about pulled myself out of the water on time.  Having said this, I have only had a few weeks opportunity for OW swim practice and the rest of my training has been in a pool.  I found the two very different.  I think I can improve, but not considerably, and the effort required to do so would probably not warrant the minutes saved.

Bike   I didn't own a bike and hadn't ridden in over 20 years.  I took advice from people on here and I found a Specialized Tarmac Pro on ebay for £850.  I don't have aero bars, but I think I may use them next time on a flatter course.  I found the bike quite easy to learn.  Initially it was hard and I was struggling to do 15 miles in any kind of decent time.  I was more like the village postie!  My legs developed quickly though and soon it grew to 30-40 miles.  Once I was up to 50 the gaps increased with ease to 70-80 and I did a few 100+ mile rides in training.  I really enjoyed the bike and I think I can improve quite a lot on that with more specific training, more considered nutrition/hydration and perhaps some tweaks to the bike.  I don't think spending big money on a new bike will be worth it though, for me. 

Run   I came to this from a running background having done some marathons, halfs and 10ks over the years.   The running, therefore, has never been a problem.  I just needed to learn to run after doing a bike ride and to keep it up during the other training.  I did find that my running pace dropped because I was doing less miles overall, but my overall fitness increased.  My mara PB is 3:29 but I would typically go round in about 4:00 (I did Paris in April in 3:55 for example).  On the IM I did 5:35..!   This is because I adopted a run/walk/run strategy.  Clearly there is lots of time to be saved here if I try to run the whole thing, or just walk less..!

What did I learn from this...?   Time for training is critical.  You can't blag yourself round an IM.   I found it soooooooo hard to fit in the demands of training with my life.  It is easy to say 'just do it', but not so easy in practice.  I did what i could and I did enough to get round, but of my 16 week plan I did perhaps half of the training specificied (and literally none for quite a few weeks!) and before that it was sporadic.  I know I can do better - much better.  Physically, I have a lot more to give.  However, the reality of running a business and having kids is a huge hurdle that is not easy to ignore.  I have thoroughly enjoyed the experience and I am so proud of my achievement.  My goal was to get round, regardless of time, and I did.   I will do it again and see if I can learn from this and do a little better next time. 

The Pirates are the best..!   Superb bunch of people and the experience would have been far less enjoyable if I had done it on my own at a non-pirate event.


debbo    pirate
25/06/2008 at 07:58

Jpenno - fwiw, I reckon that you have a better time doing your first IM if you don't have too serious a time goal.  I don't know what your background is, and I'm one of those 'older pirates' and came from a background of being able to swim front crawl, but being a crap cyclist and runner.

I've done 4 IMs now and on sunday I was 2 hours 20 slower than my last one, and it was my slowest ever.  I'm not disappointed - it was tough and I finished.  If I'd had a time goal I'd be miserable. ; - )

25/06/2008 at 09:07
I was 52 when I did my 1st IM; my missus was 54 and she has just "won" her a/g at Nice at 55 (OK - she was the only one in her a/g and was the oldest female competing but you need to be in it to win it!)

we both came from triathlon/biking backgrounds before we started but it's not impossible to go from nowt to completion in 12 months as long as you're prepared to put that hard work in over a good period of time. your recovery rates are slower than the young 'uns and you may not want to attempt 6 days a week training/15hr+ weeks as it's bloody hard but if you make the sessions count (quality not quantity) it's achieveable. get a strong base in place over summer/autumn and it's very doable....

don't set a time goal - or if you do, keep it to yourself - the aim for a 1st Im is to finish inside cut-off - anything better is a bonus.

there was a guy at IM Florida last year who finished (and not last!) - he's 78 and was doing his 33rd (I think) IM. he started at 65. 'nuff said.
25/06/2008 at 09:23
Wow FB, that's all very inspiring!!
25/06/2008 at 09:38
AL you're still pondering aren't you. 
25/06/2008 at 09:40
Yes Nam! You have alot to answer for young lady!!!!
25/06/2008 at 09:49

Hey you were down for Nice before I ever pondered...  for once I'm not to blame... 

I had thought about all the emminently sensible ways of training for IM that's advocated elsewhere i.e. a year of sprints and Olys, then Half IMs and some time in the distant future the illusive IM...  but I wonder how many end up actually doing it?  Or will it all turn out to be a nice idea and then no focus?

I think for me personally, I used to think that way of training would give confidence or emotional security for a better phrase, but I think it's too long a time to make excuses too...  so I'll stop thinking about it and get on with it. 

I love what DV did...  said he'd do it and got on with it.  Respect.

Edited: 25/06/2008 at 09:50
JPenno    pirate
25/06/2008 at 09:51
toomuchtodo - if you are looking for a sprint tri this year then come and do the Nantwich tri on 21/9/08 there are loads of people off the forum doing it
JPenno    pirate
25/06/2008 at 09:51
debbo and FB - points taken about the time goal, finishing is obviously the main aim
debbo    pirate
25/06/2008 at 09:55

JP - I think FB is right - keep your time goal to yourself for your first - less pressure that way - it's hard enough without adding more potential difficulties

I was 47 when I did my first, and a numpty.  BtS was 50 and an ubernumpty so it can be done

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