Swisman © José Luis Hourcade

Iron-distance races: the 11 toughest

Make no mistake all 11 of these Ironman distance triathlons are tough and not for the faint-hearted, but which is the toughest long-distance race of all? We crunch some stats to find out...

06) Swissman Xtreme, Ascona, Switzerland: Tough Score 86/100

As part of the Xtreme triathlon races, Swissman – along with Celtman and Norseman – is definitely one of the hardest and most beautiful races in the world. How does it fare in our Iron showdown?

"When I travel to Switzerland I take all my gear and winter clothes: jacket, rain jacket, rain trousers, hat, gloves. Be prepared to wear extra layers of clothes," said Julia Nikolopoulos, 3 x Swissman podium athlete. "For bike training, you need to do a lot of climbing and riding downhill. For the run it’s a good thing to train for the uphill, but the muscles also need to be prepared for the downhill. 

"Don’t forget to eat during the race. You need a lot of energy for this (especially if it’s cold) and having a bonk here is no fun."

Swissman in pictures


Continue reading our guide to the 11 toughest irons (7/11)


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You've missed Swissman,

Arguably harder than Norseman at the least.


There's probably a typo for the Lanza swim temp. 29C is far from reality! Maybe 19C at best.


Don't forget the new one on the other side of the pond, Project DM



Take a look at www.Thorbeachtriathlon.com / https://www.facebook.com/Thorbeachtriathlon

That's a new tough one.


Agree wietcth TuckandGo with Swissman. And what about Altriman, Stonemanx Xtri (ambleside).... etc

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