Exactly two months from today, Ragen will supposedly be swimming 1.2 miles, biking 56 miles, and running 13.1 miles, all in under 8-1/2 hours. It’s also exactly two months since we first started the Tempe countdown here on Dances with Facts. What have we learned about Ragen’s progress since then?
Here’s what we wrote back in June.
Based on all her training updates so far, she has never been swimming in open water, hasn’t ridden her dangerously mangled bike for more than a few miles, has no experience riding in crowds, can’t stop her bike properly, and can’t run. Can anyone take the “soon to be IRONMAN” seriously at this point?
Ragen has only managed to write four IronFat updates since June 18, the last of which was posted two weeks ago on August 4.
Swimming: We haven’t heard much about swimming for several months. The “open water course” she was planning to take in May is long forgotten, so it’s probably safe to say she still hasn’t done any open water swimming. Pace remains a mystery.
Biking: Her last update was about bike training. On a short trail ride with friends, she was excited about being able to make a figure eight in a parking lot, and was able to pedal up a small hill on only her second attempt without mis-shifting or having to get off and walk. She also managed to ride a single block in traffic while “freaking out internally”. This is the same person who claims she is almost ready to ride 56 miles on a crowded road course through several loops.
Running: Ragen has written almost nothing meaningful about running. We know she hired a new running coach and paid him to ignore a major component of the running method he teaches. She wrote a long rambling IronFat post about her “long runs” where she made the absurd implication that she now “runs” up to 24 miles at a time. We finally got a small clue about her running when she posted a Facebook update a month ago where she said her typical average “running” pace is “barely faster than a walk”. For a normal person a walking pace would be about 3.1 mph, but for Ragen it’s more like 2.1 mph based on her elite 12:20 marathon PR.
Much has been written about whether Ragen actually plans to show up in October. We know she probably paid for the new IRONMAN full refund plan, but since this is Dances with Facts we prefer not to speculate about more dishonest plans and motivations. We do know Ragen will be out of the country from September 17 until at least September 25 due to participation in the Weight Stigma Conference in Iceland and an HAES speaking engagement in London. The following two weeks will undoubtedly be consumed by last minute organization for her recently-announced Fat Activism Conference, which wraps up less than a week before she has to fly to Tempe for the 70.3. That means she will be travelling or working hard for almost half the time she has left to train.
The answer to our question from two months ago is that nobody should take “soon to be IRONMAN” Ragen Chastain seriously at this point. Her IRONMAN training effort is a joke, and and an insult to every single one of the 1700 athletes who have sacrificed their time and money to train for this event.