Last year I decided to take the plunge and enter Ironman Wales. I have always been in awe of the people who have managed to complete an Ironman and it has always been a dream of mine to be able to take up the challenge myself, although the thought of actually doing it was pretty daunting! Last year however, I read a few race blogs from people who had completed Ironman Wales in the Glasgow Triathlon Club and it really inspired me to believe that it was something that I could do! I will be competing in this year's race in Tenby on the 15th September.
I also see this as a great opportunity to raise money for charity and I have chosen the Butterfly trust as this a charity that is close to my heart. My sister Karly suffered from Cystic Fibrosis and sadly passed away in 2013. The Butterfly Trust supported Karly for many years and gave her opportunities for independence which helped to improve her quality of life.
The Butterfly Trust was established in 2002 to provide face to face support to people affected by Cystic Fibrosis throughout Scotland. Their services were set up to give the Cystic Fibrosis community of Scotland much needed social support in areas such as Disability related benefits, housing, employment and education.Now in 2018 they are the leading provider of social support for people living with Cystic Fibrosis in Scotland.
For those that don't know what an Ironman race entails, it starts with a 3.8km (2.4 mile) open water sea swim followed by 180km (112 miles) cycle and topped off with a full 42km (26 mile) marathon. There is a cut off time of 17 hours to complete the event.
Ironman Wales is also known as one of the toughest Ironman events in the world with a notoriously choppy sea swim and 2500m of climbing over the 112 miles bike course. Not to mention a very hilly marathon route. It is also one of the best supported Ironman events in the world and has a reputation for having an unbelievable atmosphere. Have a look at the link below for last years race movie clip which will give you a flavour of what the event is like.
The race itself is a huge challenge however the real challenge is the months of training, sacrifice and dedication involved just to be able to get to the start line. I started ramping up my training in January and since then there have been many early morning starts to get training in before work (including getting up at 4.30am for 6am swim sessions in Loch Lomond before work!) and weekends are typically taken up by long cycles and long runs. There have been many challenges along the way with conditioning my body to be able to cope with the training, battling injuries and finding the time to fit it all in around normal life!
At the moment I am training 7 days a week totalling about 12 hours each week which will ramp up further over the next few weeks. I am also doing the Aberfeldy Half Ironman event in August as preparation with my best mate Phil which a huge challenge in itself!
I log most of my training on Strava so you can follow my progress here:
Although it has been tough it has been a great journey so far and I am really looking forward to the event. Thanks for taking the time to read my page and any donations to this very worthwhile cause would be greatly appreciated.