Realism Dosage

Triathlon, with an added dose of running races is where my training is now directed.

Back in All Inclusive I outlined the base for my next goals:

Long plans work for me. So I am giving myself over a year to get myself up to scratch for some long course (70.3, half-ironman) racing. My working plan is to be capable of hitting a personal best half ironman race in the 2011/12 season. The timeline is reasonable. Plus it provides a good vehicle for developing a well rounded, all-inclusive fitness base over the next year from which I can launch any new campaign from.

Time to add in the numbers. Best to start with actual results. What has been my history in long course triathlon?

Looking back at my recorded results was a little disappointing. I haven't recorded as many fast times as I would to think. The majority of half ironman races have been completed in the 5:01 to 5:13 range. While there had been a number of reasons such as a torn muscle, flat tires and illness contributing to this, it is still the times I put down over a few seasons.

This is interesting because I have always considered myself capable of going under 4:30. Where has this time come from? Apart from being similar to the idea of a sub 3:00 marathon, I do have a couple of results to support this. The year 2000 was definitely my pinnacle year so far in half ironman. I put down my fastest times in the lead to my tilt at the Australian Ironman. That year I was training scared and my results were by far me best.
  • Shepparton Half Ironman- 4:43:52
  • Canberra Half Ironman- 4:35:39

The reality is I was always hoping to hit 4:30, but I never did. I still believe covering 1.9/90.1/21.1 in that quick a time is possible for me. However, 2 out of more than 10 races isn't exactly the best batting average. Knowing this gives me something more concrete to aim for. I am still aiming for the 2011/12 season, but I can now establish a 3-step approach to my overall goals.

  1. Sub 5:00 half ironman/70.3
  2. Sub 4:45 half ironman/70.3
  3. PB - sub 4:35 half ironman/70.3

How I get achieve this is the fun where the fun begins.


  1. I agree that a long term strategy is the best option, especially when work and domestic commitments limit the time available. As you stated recently, you can use the time limitation to advantage if it constrains aim for high quality sessions. Your marathon campaign in 2009 confirms that PBs in endurance events are still within reach, but you will probably have to look after yourself a bit more carefully than might have been necessary a decade a ago when you set your HIM PB. In a 1-2 year program squeezed into a busy life you will probably need to allow yourself a little bit of slack – maybe interludes of a few weeks when you run, swim or ride purely for pleasure.
    Good luck.


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