He did it! John officially completed one of the most difficult endurance races around- the half ironman! On Saturday at 7:36am John entered the (cold) water to begin the race. Six and half hours later...he finished!
For those of you who aren't familiar with triathlons and/or ironman races the half ironman distance consists of a 1.2 mile swim, 56 mile bike and 13.1 mile run. Yes, done one right after another.
Even in cold water and chilly morning temps John got off to a great start with the swim. The water temp was 66 degrees. The typical YMCA pool? 84 degrees. No.thank.you! At just under 50 minutes he exited the water ripping off his wetsuit, goggles and cap as he ran into the transition area. The bike leg was made up of two 23 mile loops with one 10 mile out and back at the end. Despite a wrong turn (made by many other riders) that cost him a little time he came off the bike and into the run with a smile! The run, as you can imagine, was a challenge but John pushed through the fatigue and pain to the finish.
**I think it's important to note that there were aprox. 260 individuals registered for this race and 30 of them did not finish.
Aside from a nice sunburn and a bum knee he's recovering well. (Not that John would tell me if he wasn't!) While he says he's not interested in competing in this lengthy of a triathlon again I think he will. Give him some time for the sunburn to fade, knee to recover and he'll be back for round two :)
Thanks to everyone (grandmas, grandpas, friends, family...) who have supported John and our family while he completed his training. It took a lot of discipline and dedication to complete this and I know many of you have helped watch Sloane, provided encouragement, etc to make this possible.
More pictures of John will be available shortly at http://minnefotamoments.com/cgi-bin/store/imageFolio.cgi (click on Liberty Triathlon 2011)