Your First Ironman Over 50 Coach Versus Mentor

Ironman Is A Life-Style – I Love It!

Your First Ironman Involves The Whole Family

Ironman Saved My Life In 2010, Thus This blog!

I had coaches, but I needed an Ironman Mentor

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Your First Ironman: FitOldDog at the 2010 Lake Placid Ironman

For those who say Ironman is too dangerous, the Lake Placid Ironman, 2010 saved my life. Believe it or not! Here we were, on the way to body marking, at 4:30 am. Blithely unaware of my massive abdominal aortic aneurysm.

If I’d had a mentor, 20 years ago, when I started triathlon training, I would have avoided plenty of injuries and setbacks. I would also have gone to the roll down meeting, and not missed a Kona slot.

Such a mentor would be a regular older guy, not some world-class, natural super-athlete. A guy who’d been through trials and tribulations, including DNFs, suffered a major health challenge, and continued training, anyway. Such a person would also want to be a mentor.

NOTE: My best flute teachers were not the best performers. They had struggled, so they understood my struggles.

What do I have to contribute, as ‘A First Ironman Over 50 Mentor‘, when there are so many great triathlon coaches out there?

For a starters, most Ironman-distance triathlon coaches are focused on winning.

Furthermore, I’m interested in the idea!

Most people over 50, wishing to complete an Ironman, should be focused on finishing in under 17 hours, feeling good. A very different goal.

I’m also interested in helping people overcoming serious health challenges, including aging, who would like to finish an Ironman, safely.

When considering your first Ironman, remember:

There are big differences between coaching and mentoring!

Your First Ironman; FitOldDog on bike, training for his next race.

Click on the image to see ‘The Creation Of FitOldDog’ video, on YouTube.

Coaching is task oriented. “The focus is on concrete issues, such as training more effectively, learning to build safely, and learning how to race strategically. This requires a content expert (coach) who is capable of teaching the coachee how to develop these skills.”

Mentoring is relationship oriented. “It seeks to provide a safe environment, where the mentoree shares whatever issues affect his or her training success. Although specific learning goals or competencies may be used as a basis for creating the relationship, its focus goes beyond these areas to include things, such as training/life balance, self-confidence, self-perception, and how the personal influences athletic performance.”

Wishing you happy trails,



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Disclaimer: As a veterinarian, I do not provide medical advice for human animals. If you undertake or modify an exercise program, consult your medical advisors before doing so. Undertaking activities pursued by the author does not mean that he endorses your undertaking such activities, which is clearly your decision and responsibility. Be careful and sensible, please.