Last Sunday, August 26, my son Kyle participated in the Subaru Ironman Canada held in Penticton, British Columbia. He was one of more than 2,800 athletes competing. They came from all the Canadian provinces, 44 of the US states and more than 25 countries.
An Ironman must swim 2.4 miles (3.8 K), then bike 112 miles (180 K) and then run a marathon – 26.2 miles (42 K). The event starts at 7 AM and ends at midnight. It doesn’t seem humanly possible, does it?
The swimming has to be completed in 2 hours and 20 minutes. If you are still in the water by 9:20 AM you are not allowed to continue the race. The biking component must be completed by 5:30 PM. The running must be completed by midnight. That is, running, or walking, or crawling.
My husband and I were on the road while this was happening so we stopped at McDonald’s to use the free Wi-Fi and get updates. Each athlete carries a chip. When they cross certain points, the chip sends information to the race officials who post it to the internet. It was so exciting to see that Kyle had completed the swimming and the biking and was halfway through the marathon at 6:30 PM.
Still, we didn’t know if he would make it. Well, my husband didn’t know. He was worried. But I knew Kyle would do it. Later Sunday night, I found an Ethernet cable to plug into and learned that he’d finished.
- He did the swim in 1 hour 14 minutes and 33 seconds.
- He did the biking in 5 hours 54 minutes and 20 seconds.
- And he did the run in 6 hours 41 minutes and 59 seconds.
Transition times added another 10 to 11 minutes for a total time of 14 hours 1 minute and 41 seconds.
Monday morning’s text message from Kyle said this:
Awesome swim! Awesome ride! But knees were done at 120 km.
Actually ran well the first 10 km. Less well the next 10. Walked the next 5 and hobbled the last 15! Felt good hydration wise but I think I started going into shock the last 10 K from the ridiculous knee pain.
Just what every mother wants to hear . . .
But he finished. In pain, but he finished. I am so proud of this kid!
This is only Kyle’s second race. His first race was a half Ironman last year which you can read about here. Amazing what you can do when you put your mind to it.
What about you? Given yourself any ridiculous challenges lately? It doesn’t have to be a triathlon to count!