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The Iron man is a test like no other.
2.4 mile swim, 118 mile bike and 26 mile run.
My name is Thiu Barnard, I am 34 years old and a father of two girls ages 11 and 3.
I am originally from Port Elizabeth, South Africa but have lived in the UK for 13 years now. As well as being a father to my beautiful girls, sport is my biggest passion in life. Ever since the age of 4 sport has been the biggest driving force in my life, enabling me now to do the job I love which is being a Rugby Union Coach here in the UK. I have coached rugby union for the past 8 years and I am currently Head Coach at Cleckheaton RUFC and also Gym Manager at Hub 26, Cleckheaton, UK.
In 2013 when Neive, my eldest daughter and I visited my family in South Africa we watched the Iron Man with my Gran in Port Elizabeth. I made a promise to her that one day I would test myself and take part in the gruelling challenge. As we left her house to return to the UK she told me that, in her heart she knew it would be the last time we would see her. She reminded me of the promise I had made and told me how proud she would be if I was to keep that promise and complete the Iron Man challenge.
2 days later my Gran sadly passed away. My Grandad still lives in P.E, South Africa and it would be so nice for him to see me complete the challenge and the promise I made to my Gran.
After teaming up with Sapper Support; an amazing charity who offer help and support to veterans and emergency services personnel living with PTSD and other mental health related issues. They offer 24/7 round the clock support to anyone who reaches out.