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I am not a runner, by any stretch. But, after yesterday's performance, I wanted to go see some...

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I am not a runner, by any stretch. But, after yesterday's performance, I wanted to go see some mentally tough guys, so we went to the finishing line of the Ironman Ultra triathlon: A 2.4 mile swim in the Pacific's riptides, followed by a 112 mile bicycle race from the coast, up the mountains, into the rain forests, and back again; finishing with a full 26.2 mile marathon...on black asphalt, at the height of the mid-day heat. Needless to say, it is grueling display of endurance, and the biggest test of mind over body I've ever seen. World class athletes finish it in about 8+ hours, amateurs much much longer (the last finisher crossed the line at 11:58.49 local time; almost 17 hours after it began, and one minute to spare). And the vibe is pure Olympian. Tens of thousands of people from all over the world gathered to cheer on each of the 1850 men and women, from 93 countries, in an appreciation of sport. You could not help but be moved: an 80 year old man finishing in 12 hours, a triple-amputee crossing the finish line with tears in her eyes; a stage-four cancer patient (with 3-4 weeks to live) ticking off the ultimate bucket list. So many great stories, and the achievement of a lifetime.

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