A full Ironman triathlon event is a total of 140.6 miles, while a half Ironman triathlon is a total of 70.3 miles, split among three events. A standard Ironman triathlon consists of a swimming, biking and a foot race.
The Ironman triathlon is an endurance marathon, consisting of a 2.5-mile swim, 112-mile bike ride and a 26.2-mile run, for a total of 140.6 miles. The race lasts only one day and begins at 7 AM with the swim portion, concluding at midnight. Some athletes begin training for the race years in advance.
The first Ironman triathlon took place in Oahu, Hawaii on Feb. 8th, 1978, with fifteen competitors, including U.S. Naval Commander John Collins, who introduced the event.