Qualifying for Ironman Hawaii?
Finding the best event to get to Ironman Hawaii
Recently I have been talking a lot to people that want to or are thinking of trying to qualify for Ironman Hawaii both from people I coach and others I currently don’t. It made me think about bringing this up. What race you should target to get there. Without being too complicated focusing on money and travel.
Here are a good few points to think of.
Races that suit your characteristics
When you are looking for qualifying races, focusing on finding an Ironman that suits your characteristics. For example, if you are a strong cyclist and weak runner, picking a course with a hard bike will allow you to take advantage of your strength and allow a buffer going into the run.
If you’re a stronger runner and weaker cyclist. Focusing on a flatter bike course with low wind conditions, allow you to use your running strength. Losing the running form from a harder bike course is a common occurrence in Ironman.
If you are a weak cyclist and strong runner, there is no point to go to Ironman Lanzarote, where the bike is extremely hard. You won’t have the legs to produce a good run, no matter how strong your run is.
Courses like Kalmar in Sweden, actually suit a strong cyclist mainly because of the wind conditions and rolling terrain. It’s not a fast bike course at all. A lot of people like to think so.
Timing of the Ironman Event before Ironman Hawaii
The timing for a qualifying race should be spread as far apart from Hawaii as possible. In my opinion, Kalmar (Ironman Sweden) is to close to Hawaii. This just doesn’t give you enough time to recover and rebuild up again. In such a short period this will empty your tank completely and take some months to come back again. I think Minna (someone we coach) can vouch for this, as she did the double last year.
Of course money, family, time and work can all play a part in this. For the Swedes, (Ironman Sweden) Kalmar is a home race and easy to access. This also keeps the cost lower than an overseas Ironman. So it becomes very popular.
Checking your competitors
Checking your competitors that are signed up, can give you an idea of the time you need to perform to. Knowing months before gives you an idea of qualification times from previous years.
Check wisely and you may find yourself off to Ironman Hawaii in the coming years.