3-time IRONMAN World Champion to Tri At Home on Easter Saturday
Win a training day with Jan Frodeno in Girona…
It started as what many assumed was an April Fool’s joke posting on social media – but on Saturday, Jan Frodeno will be taking on an iron-distance triathlon from his home in Girona, Spain.
The ‘event’ – which you’ll be able to follow live online (or indeed, ride or run alongside him on Zwift) – will also be raising funds for projects in Spain and Germany. More details here, along with an interview from Jan himself about what he is doing, why, and who will benefit from funds raised alongside this initiative.
For more details, donations and a chance to win some great prizes, visit:
Jan, how does the coronavirus lockdown affect you as a sportsperson?
The lockdown is something that affects everyone, not just me as an athlete. I live in Spain, and we’ve been subject to lockdown for three weeks. I’m not allowed to leave the house, which prevents me from jogging, riding my bike or even taking a walk. The only thing I’m allowed to do is take the dog for a walk around the block or go shopping when absolutely necessary. There is strict monitoring of compliance with these rules, but rightly so. The situation here is really dire. That’s why I’ve been training at home for three weeks now. However, when I see what the people here in the hospitals are doing for us, this small sacrifice is one I wholeheartedly make.
You are currently training for your “Ironman at home”, which you have scheduled for Easter Saturday, April 11. How did you come up with an idea like this?
I’m always training for an Ironman taking place somewhere, but since there won’t be any taking place in the foreseeable future, I’m now organising one for myself at home. We already thought of this idea a few weeks ago when things slowly started taking shape here in Spain and it became clear that the situation was really getting serious. In the beginning it was actually just a crackpot idea, with me thinking: “If I can’t do my race, I’ll just do it at home.” Then we thought more about how and why we should actually do this: It’s certainly not about showing off. I just want to attract attention in order to raise money. I want to use this event to support those who are currently doing the competition in the hospitals day in and day out.
You’re organising everything from home, and your fans are thrilled. Are you getting any other support, such as from partners, in order to raise awareness for the event?
When it comes to implementation, I’m inevitably on my own, more or less, but I can hardly believe what has been raining down on us since we made the announcement on April 1. Our partners want to support us wherever possible. For example, Mercedes-Benz is announcing my project on all its channels and offers interesting prizes at the auction. My fans are curious about what to expect and whether I can do it, and the media are also quite keen on it. We are really pleased about this response, because the greater the support, the more we can achieve.
What is your family saying about this idea? Are they going to have to cheer for you from the edge of the pool?
I had to get the okay from my wife, since she has to take care of our two kids all day long, but she loves doing that. Sure, my family will be checking in on me from time-to-time, but the children won’t find any of this particularly exciting – they know that I train in the training room.
How will all of this actually look in technical terms? For instance, how will you know that you have swum 3.8 km in the pool?
Using the speed of the counter-current system, I can calculate how long I have to swim to cover 3.8 km. That means that if the system is set to 1 minute and 10 seconds per 100 meters, I have to swim for 44 minutes and 20 seconds.
How can people support you as spectators?
The best way to support me is to help the named charities through donations or to participate in our auctions so that we can raise as much money as possible together. If you want to accompany me live, you can do so using the stream we will be offering. Those who have the Zwift training platform at home can also accompany me virtually and help me to quickly reach my goal – with the time and speed of the event not having highest priority for a change.
Another way for individuals to participate is to solicit donations from others. How can we participate and to whom do the donations go?
We are currently working on setting up the donation platform www.viprize.org/Frodeno. On this platform, we will hold raffles for products and “money can’t buy” events, and the proceeds will also be included in the big basket of donations. Our partners are also really motivated to create some great incentives to participate. It’s really something to look forward to. However, we will also gladly accept every donation of five euros. All donations are a good investment, as they will be used wisely. A portion of the donations will support Laureus Sport for Good to build up a project. My sponsor Mercedes-Benz is a founding member of this charitable initiative, and I have been involved in it as an ambassador for many years. The rest of the donations will be given to local healthcare institutions here in Girona.
Will it be possible to cheer for you online during your Ironman on Saturday?
Yes. We are currently working on a streaming show that we expect to be viewable on several channels and on my Facebook page. Additional information is to follow.