What it takes to become an Ironman Age Group World Champion, by the numbers - Ruth Purbrook

By Dave Colley | 4 Minute Read

We started working with Ruth Purbrook about 3 years ago and we were stoked to see her become an Ironman Age Group World Champion after crossing the line in Kona in a stunning time of 09:33. That made her the fastest female British age-grouper overall and third fastest female across all Age-Group categories.

We interviewed her back in October and now she's shared some training data and insights on what it took to get onto that top step...


Thanks guys. So, I was Inspired by Chris Standidge’s post on what it took for him to become a 70.3 World Champion and I thought I'd do something similar.

I think it's important to show that you don’t need to be a 'gifted' athlete, or naturally amazing in one of the disciplines, but that through general, consistent hard work you can make improvements and become an all-round triathlete capable of winning your age-group. 

I had a few races to break up the season, which you can see quite clearly on the graph:

1: Challenge Roma – at the end of week 16 – I was actually carrying a calf injury into this race and wasn’t running for the 3 weeks leading up to the race (the runs that you can see are aqua jogs...).

2: Slateman Savage – at the end of week 20 – More of a training race as I just love being in that part of the world, so I still had a fair amount of volume leading up to the race, including 3 BIG weeks of training just before.

3: Challenge Champs – end of week 22 – This was one of my A races but I didn’t actually have the race I wanted, fading a bit on the run, but it was still part of a good block of training.

4: Ironman Nice - the qualifier at the end of week 25 – As you can see this was then followed by a week off!

5: Alpe D'Huez Long Course – in week 31 – This was also a fun race, it's a brutal course but SO beautiful. I also faded on the run here, I didn't really want to start the run in the first place! That was probably the most I've suffered in a race that I can remember...

6: Hever Castle – Week 38 – This was just meant to be a bit of a test for the legs and race kit, but it ended up being my first DNF. I just couldn’t warm up on the bike and so pulled out after 1 lap... 

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