That Time I Did An IronMan

fullmetalmayhem

…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 may not be able to swim well, but my sense of humor follows me into the water.

I may not be able to swim well, but my sense of humor follows me into the water.

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…

With my biking friend and fellow tri training buddy, Terrie on one of our rides.

With my biking friend and fellow tri training buddy, Terrie on one of our rides.


Are you an IronMan finisher? Or, are you training for one? I’d love to hear about it!


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