Qualifying for Ironman Hawaii?
Recently I have been talking a lot to people that want to or are thinking of trying to qualify for the Hawaii Ironman both from people I coach and others I currently don’t. It made me think about bringing this up, and what race you should target to get there.
Without being too complicated, and focusing on money, travel etc.
When you are looking for qualifying races, focusing on looking at 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, without losing the running form from a harder bike course.
For example, 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 just won’t have the legs to produce a good run, no matter how strong your run is.
Courses like Kalmar, actually suit a strong cyclist mainly because of the wind conditions, and the slightly rolling terrain. It’s not a fast bike course at all, although a lot of people like to think so.
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, it just doesn’t give you enough time to recover and rebuild up again. It will empty your tank completely and take some months to come back again after completely two Ironmans in such a short time. 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, and for the Swedes, (Ironman Sweden) Kalmar is a home race, easy to access while keeping the cost lower than an overseas Ironman.
Checking your competitors that are signed up, can give you an idea on the time you need to perform to in that race and what time is need to get the qualification to Hawaii.