IronMan
Regensburg
Challenge

Do iron men
climb stairs
on all four?

IronMan

Completed: 13 August 2017
The biggest challenge: coordinating with the tracker
The catchphrase: “Do iron men climb stairs on all four?”

At my first IronMan race in Regensburg, Germany, I earned 6th place among healthy competitors in my age group, with a total time of 11 hours 10 minutes 19 seconds! This achievement was paid dearly for with pain and doubts, but I appreciate it all the more.

The challenging race consisted of a 3.8 km swim in a local lake, a 180 km bike ride, and finally a 42 km run through historic Reims.

I had never done anything so long and demanding before. I had done a few months of training under the supervision of my coach Jaroslava Štanclová at the Třebíč Laguna aquapark and a couple of short triathlon races with my tracker Marek in open water, but I had no idea how my body would react to the challenge of an extreme race.

Around seven hundred swimmers dove into the water and the battle for the top positions began. No one could tell I couldn’t see, so they ignored me. In the jumble of bodies, my tracker could only identify me by my different coloured swim cap. He was trying to navigate me, but at times I had no idea if it was him grabbing my leg (to adjust my direction) or another competitor. Another challenge was to cross over on land and jump back into the water between single laps, which is more difficult without sight.

After the swim, we successfully transferred to the tandem bike and gradually cut the 180 km course. The beginning was rainy, so our cycling was more careful not to accidentally slip up somewhere in the numerous turns.

The final run was the most challenging event due to fatigue, so I was overwhelmed with incredible relief when we finally crossed the finish line.

I thought my reward would be a shower, but I couldn’t touch my body as all of it hurt so badly. Apparently, I can now call myself an “iron man” – but do iron men climb stairs on all four?

Thanks to my tracker Marek Peterka and the team of Lukáš Nožička and Monika Zmeškalová who took care of me. Big thanks also to the swimming club Třebíč Laguna, which allows me to train properly.

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