Sunday, 17 May 2015

Of Ironman 70.3 in Mallorca

And so it came to be that on 2nd May after 7 hours+ in the searing heat of Mallorca I crossed the finish line of the Ironman 70.3!
The race had started well enough with my completing the 1.9km swim in just over 40 minutes. Don't make the mistake of thinking this is fast however for the Pros did it in just 20 minutes!
Yes there was 3,500 in the water but the start time was staggered so the elbowing, kicking and re-directing of fellow competitors was kept to a minimum.
The bike race was hard. Very hard. It included a 15 mile ascent up a mountain side but I knew if I could crack this I could crack the distance too - not only of the cycle component but the whole race.
One consequence of ascending a mountain in 30 degree heat is that you have to drink a huge amount of fluids and this means a lot of toilet stops. Many of these stops were in portaloos along the route but by no means all. Secluded large walls fronting farmers fields did their bit to help out as did a family in a tiny village 3km from the cycle finish line who kindly granted access to their facilities to some strange guy who appeared on their doorstep in his cycling lycra looking very uncomfortable and speaking wobbly Spanish!

The run was all about getting to the finish without collapsing in the heat. There was loads of roadside assistance from officials handing out energy bars and drinks to kids handing you sponges to soak yourself with as much water as you could.

I loved this day. It was truly great.

Before the race I came across a quote in the official race programme by the co-founder of the Ironman competition and it's stayed with me since :

"You may quit an Ironman race and no one will care at all. But you will know for the rest of your life!"