The gift of an Ironman70.3

Photo by Algi on Unsplash

The palm tree’s covered in bright multi-colored LED lights, Christmas’s Santas illuminated with his reindeer guiding his path and unusually warm temperatures are what greeted the “Wolfpack” as we journeyed to Haines City, FL for our Ironman70.3. This would be our first 70.3 race for each of us and although we felt prepared, the uncertainty of what to expect was weighing on our minds. The Wolfpack consisted of a collegiate swimmer, an avid cycling enthusiast and me…a wannabe runner. We’d make a great relay team one day.

I got here through a whimsical answer to a question from my best friends, “Do you want to do an Ironman 70.3 with us?” I’m always one for adventure and the timing worked out well. That being said, training for the race takes up the majority large chunk of time that would typically be dedicated to family time. Therefore, this decision was not taken lightly and required a large amount of sacrifice from both me and my wife.

I must start with a thank you to my wife and family for enabling me to train for the race on terms I was comfortable with. I found a plan online and read through Be IronFit by Don and Melanie Fink. This set me up for success and a proper plan to consider. Of course, I catered the plan to my life and altered it slightly. But I had the book/training guide as ideas for a strong baseline to understand the minimum requirements to complete the race. Nonetheless, I would not have been able to complete the race without the loving support of my wife. She regularly encouraged me to get out the door and perform the needful. The training was not without conflict, but she understood the necessity of doing well, even when we have a newborn and two toddlers at home.

The first question I have to ask myself is, “What do I want to achieve?” From there, I can determine my training path. I also have to consider past performance and body type/natural ability. I do believe one can be genetically inclined to better perform in one sport over the other. Therefore, running is my joy, while biking is my vice. My 32" inseam and 150lbs weight bode well for running, while those built with the “Thunder Thighs” are more apt to bike well. It was no surprise to see the beer belly dad’s crushing it on the bike and surviving through the run and swim beating me. You choose what you want to focus on during training. My preference was being comfortable.

Cost-benefit analysis

As with most items, I performed financial analysis on what is required to accomplish my goal of completing the Ironman70.3 within 6 hours. I’ll break this down into $X/min as the baseline.

Here is what I spent over the past 6 months leading up to racetime:

  • Registration: $315
  • Bike Rental: $400
  • Training/Race Nutrition: $250
  • Bike Tuneup: $15
  • Training/Race Clothing: $550
  • Travel/Accomodations: —
  • Watch: $250
  • Ancillary Accessories: $100
  • Shoes: $250
  • Wetsuit: $135

Therefore, not including travel/accommodations, the training and race was a relatively simple $2,265. It took me exactly 6 hours to finish, so 360 minutes. Therefore, my cost is $6.30/minute. Could be worse and if I continue to race, the economies of scale would certainly factor.

What next?

That’s the unknown. I’ll continue to race for fun in small Olympic triathlons. Not sure whether I’ll plug away at another 70.3 or try for the 140. I don’t have the itch yet…time will tell.



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Spencer Adams

Spencer Adams

Puppet string master, member of the cloud counsel. Protector of the CSM relm, advocate of client peasantry