Signing up for an Ironman triathlon is something most people will never do in their lifetime. However, there are a select few who take on the challenge and come away victorious. Out of this number, there are even less who complete more than one race. Wayne Kurtz makes all of these people look as if they simply did a run around the block.
Last month, Kurtz was successful in completing 30 Ironman triathlons in 30 days, which is referred to as the Triple DECA Ironman.
Even more impressive is that in total, Kurtz is nearing his 100th Ironman (including what he referred to as “regular” races, meaning only one triathlon at a time), which is in addition to the number of marathons and ultramarathons he’s completed.
He said during the Triple DECA Ironman that was held in Italy, he was finishing each race between 13 and 14 hours, which after all the additional tasks, put him to bed at about 1:30 a.m. But some of the slower participants weren’t getting to bed until 3:00 or 4:00 a.m.
“After you finish the day’s racing you have to get back to the hotel, you have to get your gear ready and on rainy days clean and repair your bike. Or if you crash, there’s the time you need to duct-tape your bike back together,” Kurtz, a business consultant from Pennsylvania, told LAVA Magazine. “So the faster you finish racing, the sooner you can get to bed.”
There is one fact that in itself explains how challenging the Triple DECA Ironman is—by day five, 13 of the 21 athletes had dropped out.
This makes sense considering that halfway through the race, Kurtz said everyone had lost so much weight that it took them to a level of fitness most had never reached.
“It was crazy,” he told LAVA. “Everyone’s fitness just went through the roof. Between day 12 and day 20, people were taking hours off of their Ironman race times. Bike shorts were falling off and your wetsuit would just hang off you.”
He said once there were 10 days left in the race, the daily grind of swimming 2.4 miles, biking 112 miles and running 26.2 miles became much easier.
“I couldn’t believe it was over,” Kurtz said while recalling the end of the race. “It was the worst post-race crash I had ever had.
“We’ll never do that again,” he said of himself and the other participants.