Oh what a year it has been!

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The 2012 Volcano Tour
Ironman Lanzarote, Ultraman Canada, Ironman Mont Tremblant, Ultraman World Championships Hawaii

When we peered into our future and planned out the 2012 schedule, we knew we were taking on a loaded calendar, but we were excited for what the season would bring. It was monumental from both a travel and race perspective, and we had made the decision to ‘self coach’, so that added a new level of intrigue. It was time to lace up our shoes and get down to business!

We referred to the 2012 race season as the ‘Volcano’ tour, due to the extreme amount of climbing across the 4 events we planned to take on. We would be basically racing up a total of 50,578 feet in the 2x Ironman and 2x Ultraman events – with the first and last actually occurring on volcanoes!

After logging some long hard miles in March and April we launched into the season in May with a trip to Spain to race Ironman Lanzarote. We wanted to gain some experience in hot, windy and hilly conditions to help us prepare for Ultraman Hawaii, so why not take on what is called the toughest Ironman on the planet! Lanzarote proved to be a stunning venue and gave us some great race experience to build upon for the season ahead. Once complete, it was time for a side trip to Barcelona to enjoy some eats and drinks and see more of Spain! Ahhhh… Jambon!

After Lanzarote and some downtime in Barcelona, we got right back to the business of training and ventured up to take a peak at the Ironman course in Mont Tremblant. We were thrilled to find the course set up for athletes to train on in the weeks leading up to the race, so this became our playground for June and July!

We made a return trip in early August to race Ultraman Canada for the second year in a row and to get to know the Okanagan Valley even better. We enlisted the help of Cassie as Kev’s crew captain and paired her with Tania Burgi of Maple Ridge, and brought Anne over from Victoria to be Kat’s crew captain and join forces with Elizabeth Tribe of Penticton. The race provided us with a much deeper understanding of pace and nutrition for Ultraman racing and the early season training and racing paid off in our results. We both finished as first place Canadian male and female athletes in the event, with Kev in 9th place overall, and Kat as 2nd place female.

Ironman Mont Tremblant followed 10 days later, and with missing toenails, we found ourselves at the start line, ready to go! Great weather and great friends made for terrific race results.

Onwards we headed towards our biggest challenge to date – the Ultraman World Championships in Hawaii. We had been dreaming of this event for the past 10 years and all the miles logged in training and racing had lead us to this point. We were thrilled to be heading to the Big Island, surrounded by the Ultra-Ohana of family and friends, and brought Cassie along with us to share in this epic adventure. Anne was there to cover crew captain duties for Kat and we paired her with Ultra-runner and Ultraman Canada finisher Lucy Ryan of Port Coquitlam. Meanwhile, Kev had the solid crew support of our dear friends Linnea Rossitter as his captain, and Dave Ahrens covering navigation, nutrition and pacing! With a great crew selection, and the Ultra-Ohana of Hawaii surrounding us, we were both thrilled with our racing performances and had successfully completed a 10 year dream!

The magnitude of this event held great significance for us, as we had come to place where we had reached such lofty goals. Kevin wanted to mark this moment in time for us by renewing our wedding vows, so with the help of Jane Bocus & Sheryl Cobb, the Sheraton Keauhou Bay Resort made the perfect setting to mark the occasion. Steve King was kind enough to renew our vows and joined us along with our Ultra-Ohana to celebrate our 10 year journey!

2012 has taken us further and farther than any season in the past, and our experience in training and racing brought us to a new level of endurance understanding. We raced the equivalent of 7 Ironmans in 7 months and logged over 10,500KM of training from April till November.

The icing to this epic-Ultra cake was finding out that both of us were chosen as ‘Canadian Male and Female Ultra Distance Athletes of 2012’.

Seriously… Oh what a year it has been!

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