After taking an ‘easy’ year in 2018, it’s time to focus on a new, big, long, and scary ultra-triathlon goal in 2019… For those who are impatient, click here to go straight to the end of this post to find out about the plan, for those who want the full story, keep reading…
the ‘very mega-ultratriathlon plan’ is delayed: the swissultra doesn’t host a ‘continuous deca’ in 2019, so I’m hoping to do this race in 2020! For now the main focus for 2019 seems to be ‘just’ a Double-iron triathlon…
August 2015, Llanberis, North-Wales
This is where it all started… I was out in Wales to do the 10km Big Brutal Swim, and to check out the run course of the Brutal Triathlon, basically to see if I dared to do the Double Brutal in 2016. The day before the Swim I did a bit of running, ending in ‘an easy lap around the lake’ (only partially true; it ís around the lake, but it’s definitely not easy…), and at the end of the run I met Brutal race-director (and ultra-athlete) Claire. We talked about The Brutal, and about some other adventures, but when she told me what she was training for I was really impressed…
The week after that, I’m riding my bike, and halfway through my ride I meet coach Jacomina. We ride together for a bit, and I tell her all about The Brutal Swim, and also about Claire, who’s training to do something insane… Jacomina tells me: “You telling me this means a seed has been planted…”
I forgot about all of this for a while (but off course she was right…), and while I was turning into a beginning-ultra-triathlete, I learned more and more about some amazing challenges, and met a lot of new friends who do things that sound impossible…
Then, after The Double, I went on to train for The Triple… It took me a while to make that decision, since I did want to know if the motivation was ‘right’; I could only do it if I really, really wanted it, and not because it was ‘just a logical step’. I did The Triple, but had to fight quite some mental battles along the way. So after The Triple I was sure: one of my main reasons for doing these crazy things is curiosity: trying to find the limit of how far I can go. Now that question seems to be answered; this is as far as it goes… But then again; even when it has been a really, really close call, thanks to an amazing team around me I did eventually finish, so technically I did not reach my limit… yet…
So, back to that muddy field in Llanberis, on the shore of a freezing Llyn Padarn. Claire told me she was training for a ’10-ironmans-in-10-days’ race (no, this is not what I want to do in 2019!). This was the first time I heard about this thing called ‘The Deca’, which seems to be the Holy Grail for ultra-triathletes…
After my Triple I thought: “Maybe I don’t want to do a single-stage multi-day event ever again, but a ‘one a day’ Deca sounds like a nice challenge…”
This thought soon shifted to: “a one-a-day-Deca sounds awesome, but you know what REALLY sounds like a new adventure?…”
So here we go… My ‘easy’ 2018-season was a year where I prepared: I read all there was to read about the new goal, ‘reset’ the system (both mentally and physically), and focused to get ready for another hard year towards my ultimate triathlon-goal, that has been lingering in the back of my mind since that one meeting in Llanberis in 2015… Thank you Claire, for all the suffering that has been, and that will come 🙂
So now: let’s start preparing for 2019!
The Swissultra Continuous Deca
38 km swim
1800 km bike
422 km run
oh, and Claire? She hasn’t finished a ‘one-a-day-Deca’ yet, do support her through the powers of social media for her next attempt: the decamanusa!
She did finish the swissultra ‘continuous’ though!
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