I wanted to send you a quick note of thanks... let me explain.
Over the last 6 months I have been using your 2 most controversial training programs. I started out using your 13 weeks to a 1/2 IM for people with limited time & raced my first 1/2 IM at Canberra (Australia) in December.
I paced myself conservatively, knowing I was exploring new territory & as it turned out dealing with the run in 35+ Degrees Celsius heat & finished within myself in just over 6 hours. Most importantly I enjoyed myself & gained some confidence - I think this is the key.
After such a good experience, & having validated the possibility of racing a full IM by finishing in Canberra, I had a couple of weeks off before deciding to have a go at the full IM at Ironman Australia on 28 March 2010. The bike course is one of the toughest on the world circuit, lots of hills & strong sea breezes.
Luckily I am strong on the bike & regularly train on hilly terrain. I stuck to your 13 week plan unswervingly and 2 weekends ago successfully completed my first Ironman. I can't tell you what an overwhelmingly positive experience it has been, on many different levels. I supplemented your training plan by talking to as many experienced Ironman triathletes as possible, picking up tips along the way, & I sought help from a sports nutritionist which turned out to be essential as well.
I'm sure I am not the first to have stacked the 2 plans together, but it worked very well for me & in the end I finished IM Oz in just over 13 hours, exactly on target according to the plan.
I found I had to hold back at times in order to maintain the pace i had trained on, which was a good conservative strategy for the first IM, but now I will want to step up and address racing faster in the future.
Anyway, I hope my experience & positive feedback makes you feel good & thanks again for being an integral part of my IM journey this far.
I have put up a few images from the race on the web that you might be interested in having a quick look at too...
I never get tired of receiving notes from successful athletes. If you need a bit of inspiration, check out the note below.
Before you read, know that I think he’s mistaken. I believe it is 60-years young.
From: Iron Bob Sent: Saturday, January 23, 2010 3:23 PM To:Active Trainer Support Subject: event
Gale, Yes we did it!!! Thank you so much. Ironman Florida was great for me! With your help, I have progressed from Olympic distance to Ironman. All four trainings worked well for me.(Olympic, Half-Iron, Beginning Ironman, and 13 weeks to 13 hour Ironman) Next stop is Ironman France June 2010,and yes I will be using your training. 60 years old and ready for an Ironman. Thanks again, Iron Bob
Greetings Iron Bob ~
Thanks so much for dropping me a note. I can’t tell you how much it means to me to know my plans help athletes achieve their dreams and goal events.
A huge congratulations to you!
I’m going to post this great note on my blog. (I’ll keep your e-mail address off for privacy purposes.)
You are certainly an inspiration to others that might have any hesitations about just going for it.
Basically, I am trying to set up a nice schedule for a day to day routine, like you have outlined in your book. I like to be able to associate dates to particular workouts so that I can mindlessly go about other things. I have this set up in Excel (because I don’t see an online version of the 26-week plan) and was just curious about how I can adjust a few things. The largest issue currently is due to some family circumstances (a death), and some personal issues. I should be in my second week of training; but I am not. Is there any way to reconcile that?
Also, how can I snowboard and ski all winter and still train for an Ironman!? (I’m LOL, but serious too…)
Want my cake and eat it too
A. Hey dessert person, the short answer about questions is I will answer e-mail questions if I have time and most of the time they become blog or newsletter columns (like this one). Once I have to start looking at the details of anyone’s training plan, then I charge a consulting fee or I will look at them as I have time – which can be one to six weeks out depending on what I have going on at the moment the question comes to me. The lucky ones hit me at a low workload time and can get more detailed questions answered quickly.
#1 - For you, the easy answer is to take a look at either the 13-weeks to a 13-hour Ironman or the 13-weeks to a sub-13-hour Ironman training plan (both available in the easy-to-use electronic format as well as the book). You need to already be doing the volumes shown in the first week of the training plan and have had a rest week prior to beginning week 1 of either plan. That’s where you want to be going the few weeks before your big race.
#2 - The second step is evaluating honestly where are you “now” (now can be literally now, or in a few weeks when you work your way through the family and personal issues). Begin the 26-week plan at the point where you are “now”. (I don't have the 26-week plan loaded onto Active Trainer yet, so you'll have to use your own Excel spreadsheet for now.) This likely means starting at Week #1.
#3 - You can use the 13-weeks to a sub-13 plan for the last 13 weeks before the race or use the last 13 weeks of the 26-week plan. Either way, you’ll need to chop out a portion of the 26-week plan – probably taken out of the middle.
Yes, you can still do some boarding this winter – just be sure you can do #1.