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IRONMAN History lesson, that first year..
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Here is something i wrote about the 1st ever race in Kona back in 81, and my experience there. I'll tell you one thing, i had thought i wrote it about 3 years ago, but turns out it was 5!! I guess they are right in that time starts to really speed up the older you get. Remember when you were a teenager and how long it took to turn 21 and enjoy that first legal drink??

Anyway since i wrote this, about 30,000 new folks have joined the forum and another few hundred thousand are lurkers and front page readers, so it should be new to a lot of you.. It comes in 3 parts, and there are some cool old pics from back then too..


http://www.slowtwitch.com/...blog_Part_I__64.html
http://www.slowtwitch.com/...log_Part_II__71.html
http://www.slowtwitch.com/...og_Part_III__72.html

And i do not think it has been well publicized, but this year they are having a head to head rematch of that famous Julie Moss/ Kathleen McCartney crawling finish. Both women have been out of the sport for sometime, but i know they both have been quietly training all year for this. If you do not know what i'm talking about, well first of all you are not a real triathlete, and second go google the 82 race where julie crashed and burned and crawled across the line while leading the last hours of the race, only to have Kathleen run by her in the crowd, unknowingly winning the race while julie reached for the line on the ground.

And i did a 2.5 mile ocean swim race this weekend, and while meandering down the results list, look what i found? Go to #79, so she definitely has been training, and not a bad time for someone that was never a swimmer and over 50 years old now!! I did not get to see or talk to her, but i will be catching up for sure once in hawaii, so maybe i will have some more info on this 30 year later grudge match..

http://www.tikiswim.com/results/
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Re: IRONMAN History lesson, that first year.. [monty] [ In reply to ]
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Very cool stuff, especially the 10,000 calorie "mancakes".

From those very humble beginnings, look where things are now.

Not sure if that means they are better, or not....
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Re: IRONMAN History lesson, that first year.. [monty] [ In reply to ]
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I'm new to the sport/community. This was great. Thanks.
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Re: IRONMAN History lesson, that first year.. [monty] [ In reply to ]
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Thanks for posting. Didn't read it before..
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Re: IRONMAN History lesson, that first year.. [monty] [ In reply to ]
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Um, not a half-bad time yourself, there, Monty. Way to go.

Julie and Kathy did an interview together on Competitor Radio in January. Sounds like they're good buddies now:
http://competitorradio.competitor.com/...tney-and-julie-moss/

It's definitely worth the listen.
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Re: IRONMAN History lesson, that first year.. [monty] [ In reply to ]
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Good stuff. I was thinking today as I was on a hike, how the History of the sport is gradually being lost. This sort of post reminds us all the origins of the race in Kona and the importance of it's heritage.

BTW, same is true of Ultrarunning and how few remember it's beginnings, almost simultaneously with IM.
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Re: IRONMAN History lesson, that first year.. [monty] [ In reply to ]
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Good stuff Monty. The sixty avacados challenge, cool hand luke pt 2. That is a great photo of you in part 2. Do you have kids/ grand kids ( who would be very young). They will be impressed.

Also, you need to sue WTC for using the Ironman name. You used it first. Can you believe what this jas all become! Crazy!
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Re: IRONMAN History lesson, that first year.. [ajthomas] [ In reply to ]
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ajthomas wrote:
Good stuff Monty. The sixty avacados challenge, cool hand luke pt 2. That is a great photo of you in part 2. Do you have kids/ grand kids ( who would be very young). They will be impressed.

Also, you need to sue WTC for using the Ironman name. You used it first. Can you believe what this jas all become! Crazy!

----

Down here in Oz we crowned our first Australian Ironman Champion in 1966.His name is Hayden Kenny.



---
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Re: IRONMAN History lesson, that first year.. [monty] [ In reply to ]
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Thank you for posting the links. A good friend of mine also competed in the 81 race (finished 17th if you still have the results). He has shared his "diary" of the week leading up to and including the race with me as well. I enjoy reading them even more than "Iron War". You guys are the true pioneers of the sport and are truly inspirational for what you did and how you did it.
Last edited by: sdbanker: Oct 3, 12 13:54
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Re: IRONMAN History lesson, that first year.. [monty] [ In reply to ]
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Wow, I really enjoyed reading those! I've raced mostly short course for the last 2 years, but this makes longer stuff look enticing (in a weird, painful kind of way).

Thanks for the read!
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Re: IRONMAN History lesson, that first year.. [monty] [ In reply to ]
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I loved this part:

Speaking of health and medicine, there were concerns for us back then, this whole thing just had everyone scared. They instituted a weigh-in procedure for the race. You would stop four times during the bike and run and they would check your body weight against your recorded pre-race weigh-in. If you lost more than 10 percent of your weight, you would be pulled from the race. This had us all worried, no one wanted to get pulled, and back then we just didn't know if you really lost that amount of weight you would be screwed anyway. This was a hot topic of conversation at Dig-me beach each day.


But as is my style, I endeavored to find the angle in the system. Weigh-in for your scratch weight would be on Wednesday afternoon. I got my buddies and John together and told them my plan. We would do a light run Wednesday morning, skip breakfast, and spend two hours in our sauna right before the weigh in. That way, we would knock off several pounds, and really have a more than a 10 percent cushion before getting pulled. Then just put it all back right after. It's funny when I look back at the TV coverage, where swim course commentator Diana Niadd, says, "These athletes are amazing, after the first 4 hours of racing, they have actually gained weight, what a testament to their superior abilities.

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Re: IRONMAN History lesson, that first year.. [devashish_paul] [ In reply to ]
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What's even funnier in that 1st year weigh in procedure, is that we weighed in basically naked, but all the on course ones were of course fully clothed. As soon as the 1st bike one came, i had a flash of brilliance to put a water bottle in my back pocket. So not only did i have full kit on with heavy shoes, but a full bottle too. That weigh in was so out of touch, but it did give Diana something to marvel about during the race..

Ya, ya, we were gaining weight during the ironman!!! About 6 hours in i had gained 15 lbs!!
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Re: IRONMAN History lesson, that first year.. [devashish_paul] [ In reply to ]
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Paul,
I had never done a tri before '81 and was worried about weighing in during the race. Before my pre-race weigh in, I skipped breakfast and ran 10 miles, sans fluid. I weighed in at 125 lbs. That meant that if I didn't drown, I could drop to 113 lbs before being pulled. I knew that I'd be dead before losing that much. On race morning, I weighed in at 134, very thin, but more than 20 lbs above the weight I had to worry about. During the race, I drank & ate everything possible, including two beers and a mounds candy bar during the marathon. Post marathon weight taken immediately following the race was 136 lbs. That was early race days nutrition management :)
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Re: IRONMAN History lesson, that first year.. [pdxjohn] [ In reply to ]
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pdxjohn wrote:
Good stuff. I was thinking today as I was on a hike, how the History of the sport is gradually being lost. This sort of post reminds us all the origins of the race in Kona and the importance of it's heritage.

BTW, same is true of Ultrarunning and how few remember it's beginnings, almost simultaneously with IM.


The nice part is that we have the internet now, so stories like Monty's aren't just in some ring binder gathering dust in an attic, and books on IM's early years (ex. Iron Will) are out of print but ebook-able.

For those who missed Julie's epic finish from that race, here's the youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VbWsQMabczM


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Last edited by: Titanflexr: Oct 2, 12 21:46
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Re: IRONMAN History lesson, that first year.. [weekss] [ In reply to ]
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Re: IRONMAN History lesson, that first year.. [weekss] [ In reply to ]
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weekss wrote:
Paul,
I had never done a tri before '81 and was worried about weighing in during the race. Before my pre-race weigh in, I skipped breakfast and ran 10 miles, sans fluid. I weighed in at 125 lbs. That meant that if I didn't drown, I could drop to 113 lbs before being pulled. I knew that I'd be dead before losing that much. On race morning, I weighed in at 134, very thin, but more than 20 lbs above the weight I had to worry about. During the race, I drank & ate everything possible, including two beers and a mounds candy bar during the marathon. Post marathon weight taken immediately following the race was 136 lbs. That was early race days nutrition management :)

Fast forward 25 years after you guys. I weighed in pre race at 138 lbs on Thu registration and 140 lbs on race morning, and at end of the day back to 138 lbs. All I had during the race, was 5 bottles of Gatorade on the bike and whatever Gatorade and water I could get on the run. I think if I lost even 6 lbs, I'd be close to death given my low sweat rate.

Conversely at IMLP 2003 in cold and rain, when I got hypnatremic, I was 140 lbs before the race and had ballooned up to 152 lbs by the time I walked into the medical tent. All you guys who don't get IV's these days can thank me. They pumped me up with 4 more IV's in the medical test thinking I was messed up from dehydration (and I was too messed up to know)....so by the end of the ordeal they pumped me up to around 156 lbs and I nearly died that nite from my brain stem swelling up. Anyway, after that WTC ends up weighing you before the race and after the race, so they know if your symptoms are due to dehydration or overhydration....as Tim Noakes said, dehydration likely will not kill you....you'll slow down and walk and eventually stop moving as a natural protection mechanism...gaining weight from overhydration and you can die. Happens every year in big city marathons, usually to small athletes moving really slowly (so not sweating) in cold temps (I took 5:25 for that day at IMLP on the "run").
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Re: IRONMAN History lesson, that first year.. [monty] [ In reply to ]
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Very very cool. Thanks much for the re-post! Those sound like amazing days.


***

Riding the Awesome Train With: Dark Horse Coaching
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Re: IRONMAN History lesson, that first year.. [monty] [ In reply to ]
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monty wrote:
What's even funnier in that 1st year weigh in procedure, is that we weighed in basically naked, but all the on course ones were of course fully clothed. As soon as the 1st bike one came, i had a flash of brilliance to put a water bottle in my back pocket. So not only did i have full kit on with heavy shoes, but a full bottle too. That weigh in was so out of touch, but it did give Diana something to marvel about during the race..

Ya, ya, we were gaining weight during the ironman!!! About 6 hours in i had gained 15 lbs!!

This makes for great reading! Thanks for sharing these stories. :)
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Re: IRONMAN History lesson, that first year.. [monty] [ In reply to ]
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And here I thought you were just an ST fish who was nice enough to give me some pointers now and again in the monthly fish thread. Great writeup and fun read. It's hard to tell if it is just your own attitude, or if everyone back in the day was so upbeat and excited about the novelty of the challenge. Either way, it was cool to read about some Kona history and find out that you are such a long time bad ass.
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Re: IRONMAN History lesson, that first year.. [monty] [ In reply to ]
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just read the whole thing. great story! loved it.
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Re: IRONMAN History lesson, that first year.. [jbank] [ In reply to ]
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you can't imagine what '81 was like. this was the first time a lot of us had ever met another triathlete. being in a town with 300 people who were doing what it was you'd been doing, alone, for upwards of a year, was pretty strange.


Dan Empfield
aka Slowman
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Re: IRONMAN History lesson, that first year.. [monty] [ In reply to ]
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Wonderfully written and captures the excitement and naivety of living on "the frontier", for those of us not so fortunate to have been there.

I was lucky enough to meet (and even ride with) John Howard several times in the early '90s. His bike "land speed record" was crazy. Something like 240 km / hour. I remember looking at his scarred and gnarled legs and wondering if they still had any original skin remaining.
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Re: IRONMAN History lesson, that first year.. [monty] [ In reply to ]
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thanks for sharing, great reading.
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Re: IRONMAN History lesson, that first year.. [monty] [ In reply to ]
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And i did a 2.5 mile ocean swim race this weekend, and while meandering down the results list

Backdoor brag that you also won your AG!! Not bad for an old man with a bad ticker.

:-)


clm
Nashville, TN
https://twitter.com/ironclm | http://ironclm.typepad.com
http://tnwomenscycling.com
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Re: IRONMAN History lesson, that first year.. [pdxjohn] [ In reply to ]
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pdxjohn wrote:
BTW, same is true of Ultrarunning and how few remember it's beginnings, almost simultaneously with IM.


Not surprising that few remember the origins of ultra running, it predates the Modern Olympics.

Comrades was first run in 1921 and the London to Brighton in 1953.

Six Day races were run as far back as the 1870s, with professional races in England, continental Europe, Canada, the US and Australia. The prize money was lucrative, spurring the top runners to record distances in excess of 600 miles.

Ultra running didn't just start when Gordy Ainsleigh's horse pulled up lame.
Last edited by: satanellus: Oct 3, 12 17:35
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