It’s 5.40am on Saturday 1st September, a normal if slightly unsociable hour on a day for many that signifies the end of Summer, not that we seemed to have one this year. But for me it is hugely significant.
At this time on this day five years ago I was dressed from head to ankle in tight fitting rubber as I stood on the side of a cold and alien looking lake. The sun was rising over the trees, the shadows of the night being opened like curtains to reveal a new chapter in my life. I was surrounded by great people all dressed in the same weird style and amongst those were three wonderful friends who were about to take a huge leap of faith with me, a leap that I for one think changed each of us for the better.
Five years on and we now have between us eleven Iron distance medals and a whole raft of memories. Where we were once novices of a brutal game we now stand proud veterans of what now seems like a normal thing to do. That brutal game has given us so much: confidence, lasting friendships, enjoyment, opportunity, success, knowledge, work, romance, pain, suffering, but most of all fun.
Five years ago at 6am on the 1st September a claxon sounded and Dave “The Ex-Spartan”, Min Tilston, Viking and I left our old selves behind as we started out on our Ironman journey. We never knew it at the time but those first few stokes of front crawl in that dawn enshrouded lake would be as significant as the first steps we made as babies many years previous.
I’d like to thank my three wonderful friends for taking that leap of faith with me and wish them Happy fifth Ironman Anniversary. Here’s to five more wonderful years.
If you are considering your own leap of faith, then do it. It was one of the best decisions of my life. Seize the moment, grasp the opportunity and reach for the stars.
Dave, Min, Viking and I are living proof that anything is possible.