- How much time can I reasonably dedicate to training per week?
- Is that enough time for the event you're signing up for? If your answer is 7 hours a week then its probably not likely you should sign up for an Ironman.
- How well do I want to perform at this event? Just finish? Win my age group? Win overall? (This answer will be a factor on how much time you need to spend training for this event)
- Is my family on board with this goal? Are they ok with me spending less time with them?
- Is my work on board with this goal? If you spend your extra time at work because you can, you may not be able to do this once you begin your training.
- Does my schedule allow for 2 a day workouts when they are needed?
- Does my schedule allow for one or two days for a very long workout? If training for an Ironman you will need to get some long rides in that may be 4-6 hours. Plus you need to factor in the recovery after a ride like that. Its tough to go to work after doing something like that.
- Do I have people train with? This is very important for people who don't like to train alone. Some people are fine training alone but others need support and without it they tend to miss workouts.
It's important to remember when you start a training program you may require more sleep and recovery. This is something else that will require more time. Eating better is important when you're training hard and meal preparation requires more thought and time. All of these things should factor into when you decide on a race.
I love when people do things outside of their comfort zone and accomplish big things. I also want people to succeed and set attainable and realistic goals. Signing up for a race that will leave you feeling overwhelmed is not a fun feeling. It's so common to get excited in the moment and sign up for a big race and then face reality when the training becomes too much. Trying to manage and balance training, work and family can be tough. Many people do it and they typically have a great support system helping them.