At 58, I Completed My First 1/2 Iron Distance Triathlon

Training for a 1/2 Iron Distance is hard. It’s also scary, especially at 58 years old.

I just started doing triathlons at 57, so this was a huge undertaking. I trained 6 days per week: 2 swims, 2 bike rides, and 2 runs. I did yoga on Fridays. Just a few weeks before my 70.3, I was diagnosed with Osteoporosis. The reality set in that I could really get hurt if I had a crash or something. Luckily, my doctor said all the training I was doing would help keep my body strong.

Two weeks prior to the race, the race company notified us we would only have 3 hours and 15 minutes to complete the bike portion. I felt defeated before even starting the race. (Even at my fastest pace, I knew I could not physically achieve this bike cutoff). I took the bull by the horns and contacted the race company repeatedly until they realized they had made a mistake and would give us 4 hours to complete the 56 miles.

Ultimately, race day was crazy. 17 mph headwinds on the bike and rainy. The half marathon was hot and humid, then rainy, then tornado warnings, then finishing to my family all waiting at the finish line.

It was sooooo hard, but I did it. They chased us out without giving results (I was one of the last 10 to finish—but I finished.). Later, I found out I came in 3rd in my age group! It took me another five weeks to get them to mail my 3rd place medal to me. Persistence pays off.

I am now training for my first marathon, with extra pounds due to my new medication, but I will do it.

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