THE WOODLANDS, Texas -- The IRONMAN competition is happening Saturday morning in The Woodlands.
Among the fierce athletes participating in the long-distance triathlon is a Houston mom who is competing for the seventh time.
“I’m really nervous. Excited the training is going to be done and that I don’t have to do that for awhile, but I’m really nervous,” Christy Lan said.
An IRONMAN competition consists of a 2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike ride and a 26.2 mile run.
Lan finished her first race ten years ago. She’s competed in Louisville, Ky., Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, Wisconsin, Kona, Hawai'i, and now three times in Texas.
“Other than having kids and getting married, finishing that first IRONMAN is probably the most magical experience ever. It’s just an amazing feeling to cross the finish line and know your body did that,” she said.
However, Lan is competing with a fractured elbow this year.
Occupational therapists at the Memorial Hermann IRONMAN Sports Medicine Institute at Memorial City made her a custom brace.
“The material is really cool. You put it in the hot water and it gets soft, so you can mold it right to the person’s arm,” said Carla Purcell, Memorial Hermann IRONMAN. “In Christy’s case, we had the brace on to protect her elbow. Then she’s still able to go through the motion to do the swimming and get through the race.”
Now that she has a 1-year-old and 3-year-old at home, Lan says the competition is something she does for herself.
“It was important to me to prove that I could be a mom, I could work full time, and I could do this without taking away from my kids. That was a really important thing to me,” said Lan.
Lan’s shortest time is 11 hours and 5 minutes.
This year, she says her goal is to finish in time to give her kids a hug and kiss before they go to bed at 8 p.m.