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Profile: Chris McCormack, Ironman Legend

Australia's Chris McCormack has been at the top of triathlon events for the last 10 years, and since his first Ironman in 2002 he has dominated the gruelling 3.8km swim, 180km bike and 42.2km run event....

chris mccormackFancy going 227km in the energy sapping heat of Hawaii? Probably not, but Chris McCormack is returning to the punishing Kona Hawaii Ironman event this year for a shot at first place in triathlon's ultimate test of mental and physical endurance. His aim is to break 8 hours (most mortals finish in a good 12 hours+ !) and he would be only the fifth man in history to do so.

The interesting aspect about the Ironman is that McCormack believes it's a lot more of a mental race than you would expect. He says "your mind and body go through a wide range of emotions during the race day - there are a lot of battles to be won".

But there's definitely a physical side to the Ironman event - you dont just turn up and complete such a tough race without serious preparation. To achieve his impressive results Chris McCormack does up to 40 hours a week of training, and before you think it's alright for those who dont work he also runs a bike shop in Carringbah and provides fitness training and life coaching to corporate clients. Phew! Makes you tired just thinking about it.

In an average week he will swim 30km, ride 700km on his bike, and run for at least 120km. It's an impressive training regime and not something the average person can realistically complete, but you can aspire to his dedication to training and committment to put the hard work in week after week.

Interestingly, his diet is about 50% protein, 30% carbohydrates, and 20% fats, and has lots of fruit and vegetables.

After Hawaii 2006 McCormack is changing tack to take on the Olympic distance triathlon event and hopes to qualify and win at Bejing 2008. It's certainly a step down in distance as the Olympic triathlon event is a 1.5km swim, 40km bike, and 10km run. It's the a new challenge and the lure of Olympic gold that has made him make the switch, "the Olympics are something special and I dont think gold is beyond my reach" he says.

Source: Sydney Morning Herald, April 23 2006

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