By Coach Lora Erickson, BlondeRunner.com
Admittedly it seems crazy to pay hundreds of dollars and put so much time and energy into training to complete an Ironman event; swimming 2.4 miles, followed by a 112 mile bike ride, and topping it off with running a 26.2 mile marathon. It’s plain crazy, right?! Having completed two Ironman events, I can tell you what drives someone to do things like this. I believe the human spirit knows there is value of hard work and setting goals that require true grit. I believe people want to understand their own limits and test themselves. I believe the pain and suffering experienced through hours of disciplined training leads to a greater victory and sense of accomplishment when the goal is realized. I believe humans innately know this. Think of your most joyous moments? Were they tied to some difficult trial that was overcome?
Some people just want to prove to themselves that they can do it. Or they may have been challenged or double-dog-dared by a friend. It could be all their friends are talking about. Maybe they have a significant birthday coming up or were inspired by watching the Ironman World Championships in Kona on television and want to attempt a triathlon themselves. Maybe they want to inspire others or do it for a friend that can’t. It could be the natural order or progression of racing from a 5K to a 10K to Marathon to triathlons to an Ironman event. Proving someone wrong who told them they could not do it may also be the motivation.
If they are like me and have suffered an accident (being hit by a truck on a bicycle) and have physical challenges that make them want to prove that nothing can stop them; then that might be the motivation. Once they have obtained the title of “Ironman” it can never be taken away and it is notably hard past challenges become trivial. New challenges are easier to take on with more vigor and resolve. Whatever the reason, once they have completed an Ironman event it eliminates all the doubts that it could be done. Anything is possible!
Coach Lora Erickson is an Ironman All-World triathlete placing in the top 5% in her age division in the world. She is also an experienced and passionate certified running & triathlon coach. She offers custom designed training plans on-line as well as in-person coaching. To learn more visit BlondeRunner.com or message her directly at firstname.lastname@example.org