Our adventure to Ironman Melbourne 2012 all started the day of our 100km treadmill team world record attempt up at Shift60 gym in Bondi. We had just smashed the record and raised much need funds for the Kids Foundation. After the event I was chatting to a lady from the Kids foundation named Susie. Susie is an IRONWOMAN herself and was telling me all about her experiences in these crazy races that can last up to 17 hours. She mention that her foundation received an entry into the teams section for this years Melbourne Ironman and asked if we would like put a team in with myself doing the Marathon run leg, yes all 42.2 Kilometers of it. I was hesitant at the time as I had only ever ran one before on the Gold Coast and swore black and blue I'd never do it again. With only about a month to prepare and after chatting with Adrial "Bacon" Young (swim) and Clint "Clipper" Kimmins (bike) we decided we'd do it. What had I gotten myself into?!
To prepare in total I think I ran about 100km over 2 weeks. It probably wasn't the best preparation but all I could think was "hey, if there will be people doing all 3 legs on their own, surely I can get through a marathon by myself".
|Biggest run before the marathon was 30km Many-Bondi with V|
|Another training run. 16km|
Before I knew it, Saturday the 24th of March had arrived and we were down in Melboure getting ready to race the next day. There was another motivator in Team KIDS Fdn's race as another lifeguard team from Bondi was entered as Team Ironman Aus. Now as most of you know we are quite the competitive type and neither wanted to lose! The other team, made up of some very athletically talented lifeguards was Ryan "Whippet" Clark (swim) Greg "Bisho" Bishop (bike) and Gavin "Bagas" Stevenson (run) and they wanted to beat us as bad as we wanted to beat them but it was all friendly of course.
After a huge carbohydrate loading session together for dinner we said our goodnights to each other and went to bed knowing at some point the next day we were each going to be in "THE HURT LOCKER" !
It was a 4:00am when we woke on Sunday morning which is never nice but the weather was perfect for IRONMAN racing with no wind and cool temperatures. We packed the car and left our hotel in St Kilda and headed 40km south to the sleepy little town of Frankston where the IRONMAN race was to start at 7:00am. Once there Bisho and Clipper made some last minute adjustments to their very expensive bikes and we headed down to the water to see the start of the race and wish Whippet and Bacon luck in their 3.8km swim in a dark and Murky Port Phillip bay.
|About 16 million $ worth of bikes here...|
|Final bike adjustments|
|Whippet and Bacon, ready to swim.|
|Swimmers setting off in the dark.|
|Clipper and Bisho, ready to roll...|
|Timing chip change over.|
|Lets go Clipper...|
|The bike riders were hammering along.|
|The turn around point before heading out for another 90km|
Bacon decided to try and throw Bagas off his game by interrupting his nap before his run. I thought it was funny :)
|One of my motivators..|
|14km out and the white pins are feeling good. Thanks for the pic @Kelscha|
|My Garmin stats|
|Bagas was Happy but Sore !|
|Well deserved beers|
|Bacon met his hero, Greg Welsh. 5 x World IRONMAN champ|
|One on the many legend solo finishers|
IRONMAN is one of the greatest experiences of my life. The men and women that do these races solo are all my heroes. It doesn't matter if you're a professional like Craig Alexander winning in a time of 7:57 or you're just an average Joe or Jane finishing in the dark in a time of 16:50 you are a true champion to me. They put their bodies through hell and come out legends and I am in awe of you all.
My next goal is to be back there next year doing it solo. I want to be one of them. I want to join that elite club of legends.
|My little IRONMAN buddy...|