Ironman Switzerland, Switzerland

Time of year: July

Value for money: 3

Location: 5

Crowd support: 3

Organisation: 5

PB potential: 2

Course: 2-lap lake swim (with Australian exit), challenging 2-lap bike course with 2 quite steep climbs and a fairly flat 4-lap run course

Competitors: cca. 2500

Locality: The race is held in Zurich, by lake Zurichsee. The place is stunningly beautiful and the city is beautiful with lots to do and see.

Getting there: It is easily reached by car, train or bus if you’re living in Europe. If you’re travelling from further afield then it is easy to fly into Zurich airport.


My experience

I drove into Zurich on Saturday morning after stopping off in Germany on Friday night and finishing the journey on Saturday.

On arriving, I parked the car and went for a short run, then I had lunch and collected my race number. After this I met my friend, Lukas Polan and we went for a bike ride together for about an hour. It was fun as there were other smaller races going on and people were cheering us on even though we were just riding about!

After this we racked our bikes and went for a run. This involved us running round town while Lukas looked for somewhere to buy his dinner! I’d brought something from home so wasn’t too worried but don’t normally run much before a big race so was hoping we’d pack up soon!

Finally we went for a swim in the Zurichsee. I could see the next day would be an amazing event and was really looking forward to it, even though I’d raced an Ironman 2 weeks before and an olympic triathlon the week before (posting my best ever time!)

Things in the morning started well, everything was good except the water was hot so there were no wetsuits.

The swim was one of the best experiences of my life, except I didn’t know where to get out and wasted a minute or two finding out! I got out of the water with my friends and started the bike. This was really challenging for me, maybe from the previous weeks of racing or maybe just because it was tough! I enjoyed every minute of the views and the tough hills though.

Finally came the run, it was hot and I was tired (I’m sure I ran too much with Lukas on Saturday!) and although I managed to keep a reasonable pace I found it hard and decided to try the salt which was offered at the aid stations. This gave me an instant boost so I tried some more! It stopped affecting me and even though I kept trying, nothing more happened. I ran and did some walking in the heat and eventually crossed the line in 10h06, the 13th MPRO on the day!