Ironman Advanced Triathlon Training Plan (16 weeks)
If you've got 4 months to go until your Ironman and need a plan, check out our 16-week Ironman Advanced triathlon training plan.
Who's it for?
The Ironman Advanced triathlon training plan is aimed at triathletes who have trained for a number of seasons, have completed an Ironman 70.3 distance triathlon and are already training 10-12 hours per week. The aim is to help you to achieve your triathlon goal with a clearly structured 16-week plan which avoids over-training and injury, whilst also providing a relatively high training load within a balanced and controlled environment.
Is it for you?
If you’re looking for a training plan designed by specialist triathlon coaches who have competed in multiple Iron distance events all over the world and you don’t need a coach to hold your hand, then this is the training plan for you!
Because this plan is aimed at intermediate to advanced athletes, it progresses quite quickly from 12 hours a week of training up to 15.5 hours of training (averaging 13 hours a week over 16 weeks), building towards several 'big training days'.
Why choose our plan?
The coaches at WhittleFit have competed in Ironman events all over the globe, therefore we’re very well placed to advise on the training requirements to have a great race.
Maintain a consistent strong effort for each of the intervals. RPE 8.
If using CSS then hit your CSS pace.
LTHR & Functional Threshold Power Test
20' Warm Up - See attachments to follow the BC protocol.
Lactate Threshold Heart Rate Test:
If the purpose of this test is to collect HR data only (i.e. you do not have a power meter) then the test required is 30 minutes.
30' Hard but even effort. This should be your best effort over this period. Try to time the effort so that you could not sustain it for any longer than 30 minutes. It would be useful to hit the 'lap' button on your training device after 10' so you can separate HR data from the final 20' of the test.
Functional Threshold Power Test:
If you have use of a power meter (for your training, not just for this test) then you will need to complete a 20' test.
20' Hard but even effort. This should be your best effort over this period. Try to time the effort so that you could not sustain it for any longer than 20 minutes.
10' Easy spin Cool Down
To create HR zones you will need the average HR for the final 20 minutes of the test.
To create power zones you will use the average power from the 20 minute test.
To create your power zones you need to multiply your average power from the test by 0.95 to get your theoretical threshold power.
e.g. test score 200 watts average. Threshold = 200 x 0.95 = 190 Watts
To calculate your HR and/or power zones on training peaks click on your name (above the calendar, on the website, not the app) and then 'Zones.' Scroll down to 'Heart Rate' and add 'Bike' insert the numbers in 'Threshold' and select the 'Andy Coggan' method in 'Auto Calculation.' Click 'Apply' and your training zones will appear.
Lactate Threshold Heart Rate Test or Threshold Pace Test.
20 minutes thorough warm up. Build you effort gradually over the first 10 minutes. After 10 minutes Insert 6 x 40-60M efforts to really 'rev' up the engine.
30' Best Effort. A Hard, controlled but uncomfortable effort. The last 10 minutes should be really challenging but you should be able to maintain your pace, just. It would be useful to hit the 'lap' button on your training device after 10' so you can separate HR data from the final 20' of the test.
5'-10' Cool Down. Light running, walking and stretching.
Take your average HR for the final 20 minutes of the test. This is a good indication of your threshold HR.
Your average pace for the test is your threshold pace and can also be used to create pacing zones.
To calculate your HR and/or Pace zones on training peaks click on your name (above the calendar, on the website, not the app) and then 'Zones.' Scroll down to 'Heart Rate' and add 'Run' insert the numbers in 'Threshold' and select the 'Joel Friel for Running' method in 'Auto Calculation.' Click 'Apply' and your training zones will appear.
This is a test swim session to establish your Critical Swim Speed (CSS), your threshold pace in the water.
It is a simple session involving two time trial efforts: a 400M rep and a 200M rep. Other than these hard efforts your swimming should generally be easy and relaxed.
Allow a good period of rest between the test reps, at least 5 minutes. You may include a very easy and short amount of swimming (100M) during this recovery.
Record your 200M and 400M times and use the Critical Swim Speed Calculator link below to work out your CCS Pace (time / 100M).
You can update your CSS on Training Peaks by clicking your name (on the website calendar, not the app) then 'Zones' scroll down to 'Pace' add 'Swim' and update your swim 'Threshold Speed' as time / 100M.
An outdoor endurance ride.
Gradually increase your effort over the first 10-20' to warm up. Then hold a consistent medium effort throughout.
If using HR or power zones then the ride should average Z2.
Effort will naturally fluctuate over changes in terrain, use your gears wisely to keep the effort as consistent as possible.
Keep fueled and hydrated throughout.
Try to chose a route that matches the terrain of your chosen IM course as closely as possible.
Try to match the elevation over the distance you might cover in this ride, for example if the course has roughly 2600M of ascent over 180KM. If you are to ride 90KM then aim for an undulating route with 1300M of ascent.
Aim to be running within 5 minutes of finishing your bike session.
Build into the run over the first 5 minutes.
Look to hold a consistent effort. HR or pace Z2.
As you complete more of these runs you should begin to get a feel for a sustainable effort and pace that might suit you on race day. You will also get a feel for the bike intensity that allows you to run well off the bike.
You will always be tired for this run. Concentrate on your pace, effort levels, technique and fueling. Try not to become sloppy with these shorter brick runs, remember you will be running for 3 or more hours on race day.
Walking cool down and stretching after the run.
Warm up over 5-10' by gradually building your effort.
Continue at a comfortable effort throughout.
6 RPE or Z2 Heart Rate or Pace.
Try to hold a consistent pace throughout without fading at the end.
5' easy jog cool down.
The aim here is to build endurance. Try to maintain good running form but do not look to run fast or hard.
Take fluids and fuel on runs over 60 minutes.
Where possible mimic any features from your chosen IM course. Consider grass, gravel, concrete and any notable hills on the route.