Tomorrow at 7 am, I will enter the waters of Lake Monona in Madison Wisconsin with 3,000 other ironman hopefuls, ready to put to the test our training, physical skills, our will and our soul, to travel 140.2 miles in less than 17 hours (the official cutoff is midnight). Regardless of whether this is your first, or your fifth, or your twentieth Ironman race, there is a healthy amount of trepidation and anxiousness leading up to the start of the race. It is for good reason, the level of strain and stress that each of us will put on our bodies will be beyond normal but, then, that is exactly. We want to find out what we are made of, to see if we can stare down our fears and the challenges that such a race brings, and then raise oneself up to a level of accountability that only a race like this can force. For members of our THPL community who do not know the history of the race here is a quick synopsis:
The idea for the original Ironman Triathlon arose after the 1977 Oʻahu Perimeter race when the participants from both the Mid-Pacific Road Runners and the Waikiki Swim Club, were actively debating which athletes were more fit, runners or swimmers or cyclists. It was suggested that the debate should be settled through a race combining the three existing long-distance competitions already on the island: the Waikiki Roughwater Swim (2.4 miles), the Around-Oahu Bike Race (112 miles) and the Honolulu Marathon (26.2 miles).
With a nod to a local runner who was notorious for his demanding workouts, Collins said, “Whoever finishes first, we’ll call him the Iron Man” And so the tradition was started. It has evolved quite significantly since the first 25 participants dove into the Pacific Ocean but the core of the race remains the same .Swim, Bike, Run, Yes it that simple.
Here’s to upholding the tradition that has brought so many to find out what it means to be an ironman.
Loving life and ready to go