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How long is a Full Ironman triathlon?


An Ironman is the longest triathlon distance out of the 5 recognised race lengths for the multidisciplinary event. If you are after a true challenge of your physical and mental fitness and endurance, an Ironman is often seen as the ultimate test by athletes and enthusiasts alike!

If you are looking to take part in a triathlon of any length, you’ll find that races are divided into age groups. This means that you will be competing alongside other male or female triathletes who fall into the same age band as you, with the exception of triathletes who fall into the separate elite category.

As we’ve mentioned already, a Full Ironman is tough going, so probably a little over-ambitious for a complete beginner, however, if you’ve already got an Olympic or Half Ironman under your belt, a Full Ironman would be a great next challenge for you.

How far do you need to swim, cycle and run in a Full Ironman race?

The Full Ironman (also referred to as the Long Ironman) is the longest event on our list of triathlon distances and is not one for the faint-hearted! Covering a whopping distance of 140.6 miles, it’s not difficult to see why this event is thought to be the ultimate challenge if physical fitness and endurance.

An Ironman can take typically between 10 – 17 hours to complete, however elite triathletes competing at championship levels will be aiming for even more ambitious times. The men’s record for the World Championship Ironman is 7 hours 52 minutes and 39 seconds, held by Patrick Lange, and the women’s record for the same course is 8 hours 26 minutes and 18 seconds and is held by Daniela Ryf. Here’s how the miles for one of the world’s toughest sporting events can be broken down:

  • Swimming – 3.8km (2.4 miles)
  • Cycling – 180km (112 miles)
  • Running – 42.2km (26.2 miles)