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Athlete sets sights on Ultraman 2018

YIPPEE: Tiffany Dahl jumps for joy next to competitor Ryan Stoddart during the Ultraman 2017 competition. Tiffany was part of the support crew during the 2017 circuit, having qualified for the 2018 event.
YIPPEE: Tiffany Dahl jumps for joy next to competitor Ryan Stoddart during the Ultraman 2017 competition. Tiffany was part of the support crew during the 2017 circuit, having qualified for the 2018 event.

For many, the idea of a 10km run is off-putting.

However, for newly minted Roma local Tiffany Dahl, it is an almost daily occurrence as she builds up her stamina for the 2018 Ultraman triathlon competition.

Having moved to Roma in January for her position with south-west health, Tiffany set upon joining the Maranoa Triathletes group and qualifying for the 2018 Ultraman event, in which she succeeded earlier this year.

Touted as one of the ultimate tests of endurance in Australasia, the annual Ultraman competition is a 515km test of willpower that is to be held in Noosa from May 12 to May 14 of next year.

The race begins at a leisurely pace, with the first day featuring a 10km swim and 140km bike ride.

Day two brings the pain, with competitors biking 281.1km over hilly terrain on what is often acknowledged as the hardest day of the competition.

For those who make it through the ride, the final day sees competitors run 84.3km to cross the finish line and secure themselves the title of an Ultraman completer.

Though May 2018 seems a world away, Tiffany has begun preparations for the event, which she said would tests both "mental and physical strength”.

"It's a huge event for me, but I am a completer, not a competer,” Tiffany said.

"I'm going so I can cross the finish line, and now I am trying to get in as much training as is possible, though a lot of this race will be about the head space.”

Tiffany said her love for the sport started in 2009, when a close friend invited her to compete in her first triathlon.

"That first one was interesting, I was on a mountain bike and everyone else was on flash time trial bikes,” she laughed.

"Every event after that, when we did longer distance events, we would always say to each other that it was a bit of a swim, a bit of a run and a bit of a ride. It kept building from there.

"Ironman events are very individualistic, and long distance triathlons can be a very selfish sport. However, the Ultraman is about family and friends, it's about embracing your support network, you can't do it without people being with you in the lead-up and the training. I liked that about the event.

"I would like to help encourage more people to do it. Before I started I couldn't run 3kms without stopping. I remember my brother saw me run to the car when he was picking me up from school and he said that I was the worst runner he had ever seen. So if I can do it, it's possible for anyone.”

Before she can give the Ultraman a crack, Tiffany will be jetting off to next month's New York Marathon, which she will be running with her friends.

Topics:  new york marathon roma triathalon ultraman


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