40km To Miles – Triathlon distances vary greatly depending on the type of event. The sprint event is usually the shortest, while the Ironman is the iconic long-distance race.
A short race, such as a triathlon, usually includes a 0.5-mile swim, a 12.4-mile (or 20 km) bike ride, and a 3.1-mile (or 5 km) run, totaling 16 miles and taking an average of 1 to 2 hours to complete. .
40km To Miles
At the other end of the spectrum, longer races like the Ironman have completely different distances, with each event measuring 140.6 miles. Completing an Ironman triathlon often takes 8 to 16 hours, depending on the athlete’s fitness and experience.
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Most people start with sprint-distance triathlons, but avid triathletes often try Olympic-distance water and long-distance triathlons during their careers.
Below is information on the average distance of triathlons for different race types and the average triathlon times for triathletes by age group and by level. We also provide general training insights to give you an overview of what to expect as you enter each triathlon interval.
For beginners just getting into triathlon, sprints completing distance running are usually the most common place to start. Sprint triathlon distances include a 0.5-mile swim (750 meters/2,460 feet), a 12.4-mile (20 km) bike and a 3.1-mile (5 km) run. The triathlon sprint length is the perfect entry level distance for beginners, but is also sufficient for athletes of all levels who want to fine-tune their transitions and get more running experience.
At first glance, the word “criminal” may seem redundant for an event that can take two hours or more to complete. But look at the perspective of a professional triathlete. Depending on the altitude and conditions, sprint distance triathlons for experts can take around an hour or less, while Ironman distance triathlons take eight to 10 hours for elite level triathletes.
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If you break both leg sprints in triathlons, it’s easier to look at both leg effort, strength, and coordination (versus low-effort, well-paced effort like an Ironman). This means that athletes can often maintain an anaerobic level or higher energy output during a 60-90 minute race. In contrast, long-term triathlon training often requires greater endurance and anaerobic training. Low intensity, high volume training.
Building endurance is important in both sprint and Olympic long-distance triathlon, but competitive triathletes focus on speed work, training and fast transitions. Getting out of the water early is important, as learning to swim efficiently is essential to becoming a better triathlete. However, consider biking and running as a major part of your mileage in a sprint or super sprint triathlon. Fast riders and runners often cover a ton of ground through a flat swim or even a triathlon without a wetsuit.
Olympic triathlon distances are twice the length of a triathlon sprint: a 0.93 mile (1.5 km) swim, a 24.8 mile (40 km) bike and a 6.2 mile (10 km) run.
If you’ve ever watched an Olympic or ITU triathlon online or on television, you’re familiar with the level of intensity and efficiency that professional triathletes display. Not only are the transition times a short second, but the overall pace is often very fast, running just over a 5-minute mile.
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High-level athletes often complete Olympic triathlons in around two hours, while the current men’s record is set at over 1 hour 46 minutes. However, in the older age groups, the Olympic times for long distance triathlons are usually between two and two and a half hours. After all, an Olympic triathlon requires careful pacing, energy management and an abundance of stamina. Because it is twice the distance of a triathlon sprint, most athletes will spend an hour or more on the bike and then run 10 km (6.2 miles) straight away.
Stepping up to the Olympic distance triathlon requires more dedication to your training. Working out early in the season to build endurance, build strength and prevent injury is important for athletes of all skill levels. However, while interest in speedwork remains important for competitive triathletes, it is less of a priority for beginners to adapt to distance triathlon sprints.
In the beginning and rough races of the long Olympic triathlons, the first distance, the finishing times can often exceed three hours. In other words, building endurance, efficiency and strength can offer new athletes greater rewards than focusing on speed and intensity.
Long course triathlon or “iron distance” is an umbrella term often used to describe both Ironman and Ironman distance triathlons. Half-Ironmans are also called “70.3” races based on the total distance over the three events (the full Ironman distance is 140.6 miles).
Triathlon Distances: How Long Is A Triathlon?
A half Ironman or 70.3 triathlon distance includes a 1.2-mile (1.9 km) swim, a 56-mile (90 km) bike ride and a 13.1-mile (21.09 km) run or marathon.
Similar to how sprint triathlons are compared to Olympic distances, Ironman triathlons are a full 70.3 times the length of each leg. Again, the Ironman distance includes a 2.4-mile (3.9 km) swim, a 112-mile (180.2 km) bike ride and a 26.2-mile (42.2 km) run.
At the most advanced level, half Ironman distance triathlons involve nearly sprint distance speed. The fastest time of 70.3 seconds was set by Jan Franden, who set a five-mile 5:05 in 3:36:30 in South Africa at the 2018 Ironman world record. These speeds are also demonstrated by other top-performing space Olympic pros who have had great success on the street iron scene, such as Javier Gómez and Alistair Brownlee. Equally impressive, the fastest time in an Ironman distance triathlon was Tim Don’s 7:40:23 in 2017.
Ironman distance triathlons are 7x the distance of sprint triathlons, so the amount and intensity of training differs dramatically at both ends of the spectrum. Equipment like an aero helmet, a good bike, and a wetsuit are a big help. If you’re competing in a long-distance triathlon for the first time or need to talk to a coach, check out these training tips.
Olympic Triathlon Distances — Trigearlab
Average professional times are 4-5 hours for 70.3 seconds and 8-10 hours for a full Ironman, but the age group in the race goes significantly longer. For older age groups, good times for a course of medium difficulty are 5-6 hours for 70.3 hours and 10-12 hours for Ironman. But for busy athletes with minimal training time, you can expect 6-7+ hours for a half Ironman competition and 13+ hours for a full distance Ironman event.
For the most part, the 70.3 triathlon is more accessible to amateurs and peers, because the level of responsibility and training of the full Ironman triathlon is significantly increased. For most athletes, preparing to swim 2+ miles, bike 100+ miles in a marathon is a huge undertaking. Considering family, work, and other life demands and setting aside time for Ironman training can be a difficult balancing act.
Both amateur and professional triathletes often benefit from a triathlon coach and working with a good coach who aligns with the athletes goals through personal training planning, support and attention. Working with an Ironman coach can help with motivation and accountability, as well as a structured training program to fit the athlete’s goals, skill level and lifestyle.
When starting a triathlon, it’s important to know what you’re capable of before lining up. The course requires a lot of preparation and thought, but your level of fitness often determines the outcome and overall experience. Below we share some FAQs about triathlon distances.
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Most novice athletes start with distance races for their first triathlon sprint. The distance of a triathlon sprint can vary from race to race, but the standard lengths of each leg are a 0.5 mile (750 m) swim, a 20 km cycle, and a 3.1 mile (5 km) run. There are also triathlons consisting of super sprints over much shorter distances per leg. For example, they often run 3km rather than run 5km.
The Ironman, the pinnacle of triathlon in the world, is 140.6 miles long, including 2.4 miles (3.9 km) of swimming, 112 miles (180.2 km) of cycling and 26.2 miles (42.2 km) of running. (226.3 km). As the main governing body of this triathlon distance, Ironman will hold 70.3 events or half Ironman races which are roughly 50% of the full length Ironman mentioned above.
Based on average Ironman finisher data over five years (2015-2019), we were able to calculate average Ironman finish times for both male and female age groups and experts, including average times for swimming, biking, running and both. implementation
Simply put, each leg of a triathlon can be broken down into the following miles (and kilometers) distances;
Kilometers Per Hour To Miles Per Hour Conversion (km/h To Mph)
The last leg is the standard triathlon, which consists of running these distances by race;
The second leg of the flag, the triathlon, is composed of these distances by race;
For related information, see our pages on triathlon bike, road bike and gravel bike options, as well as resources such as coaching, books, podcasts, training and inspiration.
Feel free to use or download this image identical to the triathlon distance table above.
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A seasoned endurance athlete, professional rider and sportswriter, Tyler Tafelsky participates in many long distance cycling events. He competes in ultra-distance cycling.
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