Kona - I am in!

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I received this email earlier today....

My first Ironman was in 2008 in Nice. 10 years and 14 ironman races later I have been accepted into the Ironman Legacy program and will be racing in Kona on October 13th 2018.

In order to qualify for the legacy program you need to complete 12 ironman events. I actually completed 12 in 2016 - you can see below the races by year that I have completed or at least entered.

When you look down the list it is interesting that several of them have had very high DNF rates e.g 2013 Texas and/or the race has subsequently been dropped from the schedule e.g St George. It has been an unbelievable journey with so many challenging but ultimately enjoyable experiences!

You will also see that I started to do 2 Ironman races a year from 2012. This, obviously, really helped me get to 12 in a quicker timeframe. But the only reason I started to do 2 races a year is because I was bitterly disappointed that I DNFd in Wisconsin. Furthermore, up to then I didn’t think I would be capable of doing two a year. But what is remarkable is that I only DNFd because I had 4 flats, my gears got stuck in one gear and my bottle holder fell off my bike. In a way my bike malfunction actually helped me get to this point. A bad experience led me to an even better experience much later!

For several years it has been my plan to try to get to Kona in 2018. This year is an important milestone...Kona will be my 15th full distance race, 10 years doing Ironman full distance races, Jamie and Gemma turn 18, I turn 50, and early 2019 Ana and I will have been married 25 years.

I have watched the race day coverage for may years and listened to so many podcasts and fellow athletes talk about this famous place. I am really excited to experience the challenge of the Kona course and also to visit Hawaii for the first time. I plan to make to make the most of it!

Finally, for all of you who have helped, cajoled, kicked, loved, supported and assisted me on this amazing 10 year journey thank you from the bottom of my heart. You know who you are!

Wish me luck


2008

1 Nice

2009

2 Nice

2010

3 Wisconsin

2011

Wisconsin DNF - bike fell to pieces!

2012

4 St George

5 Wisconsin

2013

6 Texas

7 Lake Tahoe

2014

8 Texas

Lake Tahoe CANCELLED - forest fires created too much smoke

2015

9 Lake Placid,

10 Lake Tahoe

2016

11 Lake Placid

12 Chattanooga

2017

13 Lake Placid

14 Chattanooga

Why I like to run with a Camelpak

I love running with a camelpak...in fact I dont know how fellow runners can do without something similar for longer runs. Once I get over 10 miles I need to drink something so a Camelpak is the best way to help me keep going. I tend to fill the pouch with an electrolyte or an energy drink.

 

What I find so useful about the Camelpak is that I can drink when I feel like it. This sounds obvious and a triviality but in a long running race when I am not using the backpack I find it difficult to drink what I want and when due to the lack of reliability of distances between aid stations and also the products they use. The longer I have been doing events the more I want to have my own products and consume them at my own pace. 

 

The other benefit I have found is that I can run with my iPhone. I listen to podcasts or audio books whilst running so I put on my current book and run with Bluetooth headphones. Also I can put on the mapmyrun app and it will tell me my pace and distance every mile...very useful. Strava claims to have this functionality but it does not work much to my frustration.

 

One downside of a drinks backpack is that you make a lot of sound! If I am running and talking to someone whilst running I make a lot of noise with all the liquid sloshing around...

 

Final tip: if you use a camelpak make sure you keep you bladder in the deep freeze between runs. This will stop it from getting the annoying build up of black fungus over time. However much you wash it after each use I have found it to be unavoidable.

 

Happy running!