…well, sort of. In May, I took part in a virtual Iron Man challenge, the Full Metal MAYhem. This challenge was one I heard about last year, but just didn’t think I could ever really do. I was always interested in it, but in all honesty, I’m not a swimmer. So, that part held me back more than anything else. When the opportunity came up this year, I was sick. I was sick the end of April through the first few days of May, so again, I figured it was out for me.
Then, about halfway through the month, I decided to just do it. I hit the register button and went for it. Yes, the whole 140.6 miles of swimming, biking and running was intimidating, but I figured, what the heck. I figured, let’s see what I can do in 31 days. So, I began to really give it all I had. The running miles (26.2) was never an issue in my mind, I can run 26.2 in a day and easily in a month. The bike was a little concerning, as 112 miles is a lot on the bike! We had 31 days to do those miles, I can’t imagine biking that in just one day. Then, the swim is 2.4 miles. Even though it doesn’t sound like a lot, when you consider swimming to be a “doggy paddle” that’s quite a lot of laps in the pool!
I learned a lot during this month-long challenge. I spent a lot of time on my actual bike and on the bike at the gym just to get in those miles. I think it’s more difficult to get in cycling miles on a stationary bike. Not only aren’t you going anywhere, but I found I got bored a lot quicker as well as more tired. There’s only such much TV one can watch while working out at the gym. 🙂
Swimming was hard. I hadn’t been in the water at all in years. As weird as that sounds, it’s true. So, I finally got myself in the pool in May and while it was exciting, I learned that I am not a good swimmer. I’m thankful to a friend who helped me get started, but really, I need to get a swim coach or at least join a swim group. I’m not afraid of the water, but I have difficulties in swimming properly no matter whether it’s freestyle or breaststroke.
In the end, I was proud of what I accomplished with this IronMan virtual challenge. I got in a total of 164.2 miles between the three sports. I biked the 112 miles required, ran 50.51 miles and swam 1.64 miles. So, I fell short of achieving the actual IronMan distance when it comes to the swim portion. While I really did want to get in every bit of the miles needed for each sport, I gave it my all. I didn’t give up and worked hard for what I was able to finish. The bike miles took a lot of hard work, so I feel especially great for getting in all those miles. I mean, I biked 112 miles in one month! How cool is that?
So, I didn’t officially complete the 140.6 miles as they should be, but I did complete an amazing month of working out that I’m proud of. I can’t see myself ever doing an actual IronMan, this challenge gave me even more respect for those athletes who do IronMan events. All endurance athletes are awesome, but I think IronMan athletes even more so. That said, I may do this virtual challenge again in 2015…
Are you an IronMan finisher? Or, are you training for one? I’d love to hear about it!