Double Ironman….


Could This Happen?

A double Ironman is typically known as 281.2 miles over the course of two days.  The time limit is 48 hours so you do have the opportunity to sit back and take a nap, but even that just sounds bananas.  Of course, when I registered for Ironman Texas I had no clue that I would be doing my version of a double Ironman.  No I won’t be doing them within 48 hours or even 4-8 weeks of each other but instead I am doing them almost exactly 5 months apart.

I registered for Ironman Texas in June of 2011, but my goal race was always Ironman Arizona.  Not sure why I wanted to race IMAZ so bad (maybe to meet Emz?) but it was the one race I HAD to do.  After volunteering for IMTX last year, I got the feeling that I would register for the event and that through a little bit of a monkey wrench into the IMAZ plan.

After speaking with my wife and my coach it was decided that doing a second Ironman in the same calendar year was feasible.  I would already have a base from IMTX and Ironman Arizona was far enough away to recover, train and taper.  The financial piece to this puzzle was taken care of when I picked up a sponsor to pay for the travel and races.  Along the lines I have picked up other sponsors that are helping with just about everything else from recovery products (Arctic Ease) to fueling (Boundless Nutrition and CorePower) to my passion of cooking (Grapevine Grains.)  Without these sponsors I don’t know that I would be able to accomplish this task financially.

The next question to answer was Why?  Why do this?  I think the answer lies somewhere between multiple answers.  As I said I had wanted to race IMAZ since I got into the sport.  It was a must and so I wanted it to be my first.  The other reason was in the form of a question:  Why Not?  I don’t back down from challenges.  I think it would be a gratifying feather in my cap to have accomplished two Ironman races in the same year.  Of course with that can come the dreaded burn-out.  The I HATE this stuff and don’t want to do it again.

I will not lie, but that is a very real concern of mine.  I love pushing my body over and over.  I love seeing the progress that I am making.  I love dialing in my diet and nutrition.  All these things fuel me, but what if I have a horror of a time at the race?  What if I am so drained that I just don’t want to race again.  My answer to that has been:  If you hate it that much it wouldn’t matter if the next race was in 5 months or 5 years.

The one question that hung in the air for me was whether or not to race 70.3 Austin again this year.  After reading this article I am leaning toward not participating in this event.  I am already racing Rev3 OOB in August as well as the US Open Championships in October.  Adding the additional Half-Ironman will probably not help me as that means entering the race with no taper and then having to recover.  That will just be too much, or at least that is what I’m telling myself right now.  Yes, that may change in a week when I ask the question:  WHY NOT?



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  1. Rose says:

    Yay IMAZ! You’ll meet me too :) It’s my first full. Volunteered last year to sign up! I’m a little worried myself about burn out with four 70.3s and one full Ironman this year, but you don’t know until you try. I figure worst case scenario Adam and I burn out and we skip long distance races in 2013 and hike the John Muir Trail (a 2-3 week commitment).
    Rose recently posted..Speedfil Standard Aero Bottle [Gear Review]My Profile

  2. Tonia says:

    I just read an article about two Ironman races in one season and how it can be done. I have no doubt in my mind that you will race well at both of them.

    And I always throw the “why not?” out there to challenge myself. Honey badgers don’t back down from challenges and you, my friend, are a honey badger.
    Tonia recently posted..Live Like the Honey Badger: Principle 9My Profile

  3. Bob says:

    Pizza cake dude!!

    You know the year of the Ironman for me.. 2010
    St George in May
    Louisville in August
    Florida in November

    How did they go??

    Not so good

    Once you are in condition spacing them out by 2 months works fine. The “not so good” in Louisville was due to blisters and sweltering heat race day… (it honestly made TX last year look easy).

    It took a full 6 weeks for the blisters on my feet to heal after Louisville and then Florida was a PR in 12:47 just 3 weeks after the blisters were healed.

    I dont have a problem with tackling 3 or 4 in a year as long as you don’t intend on “red lining” each one.. and quite frankly, I think the difference between red lining and working in a zone might be the difference of 15 minutes for the whole race.
    Bob recently posted..It’s BACK!!My Profile

    • CTER says:

      Bob – clearly I haven’t done one yet but IM feels like a test of patience and will. I would think that your statement about red-lining and working in zone would be accurate. If you red-line the bike it is going to take a lot of you for the run. So the 15 minutes would seem to make sense to me.
      CTER recently posted..Double Ironman….My Profile

  4. Michael says:

    My mind still can’t comprehend the Ironman, much less 2 in one year, but I know you will be just fine!!
    Michael recently posted..Birthdays Do Not Counteract Friday the 13thMy Profile

  5. Jeff Irvin says:

    It is amazing how the body becomes very accustomed to this stuff over a few years of consistent training. I honestly believe if you train year round (20ish mpw running, couple times to the pool, and hitting the weekly long ride with the LBS) then you really only need maybe three months to get “race” ready for an IM. 5 wk build, 5 wk peak, 2 wk taper – race.

    Now, I highlighted the word “race” as completing an IM can be done with a lot less effort. Since I stay in shape year round I could wake up tomorrow and do an IM, no problem. It would be slow for me, but it easily could be done.

    Point I am trying to make is that this is a lifestyle for you and training is just something you do now and have been doing it for years. it becomes ingrained and your body becomes almost used to it. You will be able to “race” Texas, take some time off to recovery (and get over the first IM blues), and then train for and “race” AZ with very little issues. Why not, right?

    Oh, skip Longhorn. The burn-out thing is very real for us and this race does absolutely nothing positive for you in terms of conditioning. A long training day at home will serve you better for AZ. Hell, the stresses of traveling and dealing with being on the road are enough alone to make you not do it!
    Jeff Irvin recently posted..Random Observations and Stuff …My Profile

    • CTER says:

      Skipping Longhorn means not going to The Little Deli and that is pushing me toward doing it…..haha!

      I am most likely skipping it b/c I want to race the US Open and go for sub 2:30 at the Olympic distance. Having a HIM on the horizon may lead me to be conservative at the Oly.

  6. Rose says:

    We would be 100% disconnected except for a SPOT emergency transponder. We’re always so plugged in, so it would be a huge novelty to really be alone and in the wild!

  7. Matt Oravec says:

    Nope. But, if I had the volume built up it would be stupid to waste like I did … right ? :) Very feasible. Go get em!
    Matt Oravec recently posted..17HMR Bullet HolderMy Profile

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