Seeing the Ironman Triathlon for the first time

Shortly after seeing the Ironman Triathlon for the first time it inspired you and most likely the first question to cross your mind was “I wonder if I could do that?”

You just happened to be at the venue the day the triathlon is taking place. Maybe you were there to cheer someone else on, or maybe you decided to volunteer.

Perhaps you just lived nearby and went to see what waS going on. Maybe you saw your first Ironman race on television.

You watched in awe and amazement as hundreds of athletes all decked out in wet suits hit the water in a frenzy of arms and legs when the starting gun sounds. The water boils into a white froth as the swimmers vie for position and make their way to the first turn marker far out from shore

You watched as the first swimmers complete the swim course and make a quick change into their cycling gear. Bike after bike headed out onto the highway as the second leg of the triathlon begins.


You were somehow mesmerized by the event and spent the whole day on the course as it gets later in the day and the triathletes are out on the run course.

However the best is yet to come as the leaders arrive at the finish line to the cheers of the crowd and once they start arriving, it continues on for hours as more and more athletes accomplish their goal and reach the finish line.

As it grows dark and the last finisher begin to arrive, you were moved by the effort and determination they are showing. You are almost moved to tears when you see a middle-aged mother greeted by her children at the finish line.

The one thing that stands out in your mind is that some of the finishers don’t look like the slim and toned winners of the event. They look like, well, ordinary people! It’s seeing the Ironman Triathlon for the first time that makes them realize that it’s not just for ripped super athletes.

The truth is, they are ordinary people who have taken up the challenge to do something extraordinary in their lives. They have taken up the challenge of a triathlon. An event that is not just a test of physical stamina and strength, but also of emotional and mental abilities to challenge oneself to “become more.”

Can you do something like this? It looks pretty hard. Is it beyond you?


Of course it’s not! People are capable of so much if only they give themselves a chance. Our bodies are amazing and given half a chance, it will respond in a positive way if you begin to train yourself to become a fitter version of your self.

Can’t swim? So what? Many of the people you are watching cross the finish line most likely couldn’t swim or were poor swimmers when they decided to take up the challenge of the triathlon. They just got out there and learned.

Can’t bike? Sure you can! Most of us have some skill at riding a bike. The only difference is, the triathlon bike you will be using will be much lighter and faster than what you rode as a child or teen. Your body will still remember how to bike.

You just have to get out there and practice and train until your body adapts to the new demands you are placing on it.

“That long swim and long bike and then I still have to run!” you think to yourself. “I could never run that far after all that.”

Maybe not, but there is nothing saying you “have” to run all the way. Once you get off that bike, you have a pretty good chance of reaching the finish line. You can walk some, and you can run some, but the main thing is to keep moving forward.

The others around you trying to accomplish the same thing will help and inspire you. So will the spectators and volunteers.


Visit for information on upcoming WTC Ironman Triathlon events.

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