Ironman 70.3 participants go the extra mile for a successful race
This year, Chattanooga's Ironman is expected to have almost 4,000 participants.
People come from all over to race and support those participating. Many athletes train for months, even years to become an Ironman.
Danielle Nesbitt came from Knoxville to participate in her first Ironman.
She says training in an environment similar to Chattanooga may give her a competitive edge.
“Absolutely!” said Danielle Nesbitt. “Especially with the temperatures being very similar. I know when you run in the cold forever then, come into the heat can be a big change. For me, the hills are no problem.”
She has always been athletic, but still wanted to work her way up to doing this kind of race.
“I started running,” said Nesbitt. “I started doing half marathons, then started doing some small sprint triathlons. From there, I slowly started working up to doing an Ironman.”
For years, Nesbitt wanted to do a full Ironman.
So, to get ready she registered for this half race.
Nesbitt trained for 8 months to successfully complete the relays.
“Usually, I do about 20 to 25 hours a week of training,” said Nesbitt. “I split it up between the swimming, the biking, and the running.”
Nesbitt says one of her main concerns now are the potholes that are on the roads.
She also took additional classes like learning how to change a flat tire to help during the race.
“I did my research,” said Nesbitt.
Participates are encouraged to get bike repair kits to make changing a tire go more smoothly.
Bike mechanic Andy Cicero says it should take less than 3 minutes for an experienced person to make repairs.
“Our wheels are really neat. If you know what you're doing, you won't need a whole lot of tools like a tire lever,” said Andy Cicero.
Cicero says during this Ironman, they will sell about 50 sets of wheels, and rent more than 10 bikes.
He says it's best for an athlete to know the characteristics of their equipment.
“We like to say because your bike looks so cool with these new wheels on them, then you tend to swim a little bit faster to get to your bike,” said Cicero.