All you need to know about Ironman Wisconsin how to train race and seed yourself on race day.
Ironman Madison Wisconsin
Hold back on the hills power down the other side.
You don’t need a power meter but a heart rate monitor keep below your AT
The Hills and cracked pavements take their toll much more on a Time trial bike.
A total 8 minutes above your AT on the bike will see you very disappointed with your run.
Plan your nutrition, there are a few good sections when you are better to have solids and coast a little but avoid not spinning your legs even if this means moving your legs you go a little slower. Keeps the blood circulating through your legs.
Don’t forget there is no such thing as a great ironman bike split if you had a bad run.
I have crossed the finish line more than 430 times and coached and studied power data of more than 1,000 files.
32 x Ironman finisher and coach with 99% record (only 2 failed to achieve target time in 14 years)
Ironman Madison Wisconsin
The event has 2,000 competitors. Each year.
The unpredictable weather makes this a challenging ironman to prepare for and compete on race day.
Be prepared for temperatures to vary from 54 to 90 degrees.
Wisconsin Ironman Swim
Lake Monona – temperature is typically 70 degrees,
You are allowed to swim in the lake in the days before ironman Wisconsin but do check for updates and official race details for times and exact location.
You can swim in Lake Monona in the days before the race, per the race schedule. Drive the bike course, of course, to check out the terrain. You will not be intimidated, as the elevation changes are slight. Don't be fooled.
Once in the water be warned there is hardly any shallow area to stand adjust goggles and prepare yourself for the ironman day ahead. So you will have to tread water until the 7am start. Leave it too late and you will not be able to swim to your correct seeded position.
Practise lying on your back during your build up and don’t worry about doing this race morning.
Two loops swim of Lake Monona.
Conditions tend to be good and calm most years. Swim start wide about 200m with a water ski jump/ramp as the only thing to split the start up. If you have concerns about the start and wish to stay wide for the early mass start then keep the ski jump/ramp to your right.
If you start close to the jump two lines of swimmers do eventually converge and can be frightening you have been warned!
The sun will rise making visibility difficult so avoid clear goggles for race day.
Slight current can pull you off line so keep checking don’t rely on others in front to swim in a straight line. The slight current does not get stronger each lap as you slow it becomes more noticeable. It’s impossible to predict where it will be so keep checking.
On exiting if you see the race time clock ignore your time as conditions may appear to be the same each year regular competitor’s time vary each year.
Wisconsin transition T1
A long but unique distance from swim to bike not experienced anywhere else in any other Ironman triathlon.
This race often has wet suit strippers just lay down and they will pull your wet suit off for you, you can still remove your wet suit yourself in the changing area. I prefer not to be surprised by the force of the eager strippers and do it myself.
Swim to Bike transition bags can be collected after you have navigated 3 floors of a parking area.
Don’t rush this section take your time. Think about the day ahead before you get your bag and then move onto the changing room.
Wisconsin Ironman bike
Bike 113 miles (based on several GPS measuring systems)
Ironman Wisconsin bike course mainly through Wisconsin farmland.
Avoid starting fast because there are no real difficulties but this ironman bike course is a constant challenge. Get carried away and the course will haunt you long after race day.
Hold back for the first 16 miles (26km) out to the 39 mile two lap loop. Be ready for the small rolling hills do not attempt to attack any of them. What goes up must come down if you go down fast expect the hill to go back up during the 39 mile loop.
Warning there are several fast down hill sections don’t take a risk to possibly save a few seconds if you get it wrong you will not finish the ironman.
After 2 laps and 97 miles you only have the return section you did at the start to complete.
The problem is the wind is now stronger and on a scale of 1 to 10 can be an 8 to 9 compared to a 6>7 on the way out including the down hill which you may of thought you could almost free wheel back to T2.
Summary – hills are not long but strength sapping.
Use a road bike rather than a time trial bike.
Night before Ironman race day-Protect you bike from over night rain or dampness.
Any problems with bike go to Ironman Bike store.
Wisconsin Ironman marathon run -26.2 miles
2 loops of 13.1 miles all within Madison downtown and the college campus.
Any hill do not hesitate to power walk let your legs freshen a little before running again. Those that try and run end up walking on the easier flat parts soon afterwards.
Let your shoulders & hands relax down any steep hills.
Once you know how you feel first lap you can accurately pace your effort for the 2nd lap.
Wisconsin Ironman Finish Line
University of Wisconsin campus finishing at the state capital building.
The temperature has fluctuated over the last 9 years. If temperatures reach 90 degrees the course is much more demanding. To run the marathon in these conditions can be almost impossible.
Registration has been held in the Monona Terrace building advancement to the transition area.
Its hard to check out the marathon course.It goes thru a stadium cycle paths.
The run is easy to follow on Ironman day so do not fret or get worried you cannot check it all out before race day. Save your energy there are no surprise.
On race day the roads are closed so you can enjoy a traffic free marathon.
It can be fresh or warm race morning or even raining prepare for all 3 eventualities so you can save energy for the Ironman.
Places of interest for Ironman spectators and competitors
Visit the Frank Lloyd Wright building with amazing views of Lake Monona that you will swim in ironman day.
Farmers market every Saturday in the state capitol but don’t be on your feet no matter how relaxing you feel it can be the day before Ironman day.
State Street has many boutiques galleries and cafes to rest and relax to take your mind of your upcoming ironman.
A must visit eat and relax is harvest restaurant 21 North Pickney Street
A relaxed atmosphere and great natural food can be found at Hawk’s adjacement to State Street.
Please note always check the official web site for changes made. It is not possible to update every last minute change to every race world wide.
Any form of exercise has its risks
My best Ironman Wisconsin race day tip.
Aim to leave transition after checking bike adding nutrition and drinks no later than 6:25am due to 2,000 other ironman triathletes all trying to get through the narrow entrance over the timing mats and to the swim start.
Marks ambition is to complete all M dot ironman races around the world, he has not many left before he has done them all. For coaching for your ironman contact mark who is one of the most experienced triathletes in the world.
33 x Iron distance 2 x double Iron 1 x Triple Iron Adventure racer and has crossed the finish line in over 1,000 races world wide.