Martyn Shone IM Wales September ’18 Race Report

Its all Uphill - even the Swim 😂
IM Wales 2018 Race Report

As with all IM it was an early 4.30am start with Porridge, bananas and a cuppa tea.
My mate drove me down to Tenby and I walked to transition . Faffed around a little and managed to deflate my tyres using somebody else’s floor pump 😆 great start! Made my way to the self seeding start line - it’s 6.30am and there are literally thousands of spectators there all buzzing overlooking the beautiful bay - the sea is calm and the sun still hasn’t really come up yet so all felt quite mystical. The Welsh national anthem was sung and sent shivers down my spine (my mother is from the valleys) and the rolling start began. My mate Pascal who completed IM Wales 2017 was there to video me through the start line and I was visibly pumped.
First lap - got kicked in head on the way to the first buoy then overcooked the 2nd buoy towards the lighthouse but stayed in Zone 1 all the way - Aussie exit around Goscar Rock then really enjoyed the 2nd lap with the sun now shining down and felt I was quicker - although both lap times were pretty identical and ended up with 1h 23 - Ran from the beach up the zig zag path, grabbed my Pink bag from the peg, stripped off my wetsuit then jogged through a zillion supporters lining the streets to the transition zone - Jo Murphy the IM compare was there and commented on my hair as I ran through the transition zone to pick up my bike. ‘The Best hair in Ironman’ were her words!
Took my time in the tent (big day ahead) and got my composure before donning the helmet shoes and gloves and venturing out to my trusted Blue Planet (X) bike 😀
Weather was good - cloudy but not cold - the route out to Angle is supposed to be the flattest section of the day but didn’t feel like it at the time - the hills just keep coming - they may not be too big but there’s lots of them - also a sneaky headwind meant people were burning up the legs too quickly without knowing. My nutrition bag was full of home made wraps with peanut butter and jam, Soreen bread. flapjacks & Cliff Bar Block Shots. Garmin beeped every 20 mins to remind me to eat which is a brilliant tip go anyone wanting to go long.
Feed stations were great where I ate bananas, Enervit bars (IM sponsor) and took on more water & energy drink.
The big loop took us back towards Templeton and Narberth where those cheeky hills just got steeper and longer. This all culminated in the two big hills - Wisemans Bridge is the hardest of the two around 16% but you just have to grind it out for a few minutes and I simply focused on the White House at the top of the hill ! There’s not much time to rest once you reach the peak as it’s a fast technical decent then you are into Saundersfoot for the 2nd big hill which feels like you are in the Tour de France with fabulous support making a tunnel as you climb - I high fived all sorts in fancy dress including dragons, Storm troopers and Cheer-leaders!!
Back down on the decent into Tenby I relaxed the legs and ate more energy bars.
Then we rode out of town for the 2nd 60k loop - a repeat of all the tough climbs again.
Felt good all the way round and even picked up speed a little as I’d paced myself on lap 1.
As I approached the Big Saundersfoot hill for the 2nd time I saw a man in a bright orange jacket that looked remarkably like my Dad - thought I was hallucinating as I was on 175k by this stage - it was my Dad!! He’d come all the way down from the Wirral to surprise me and cheer me on. What an amazing moment and it literally reduced me to tears of joy as I finished the climb and headed back into Tenby. My approach into transition was too quick and I was awarded a 1 minute penalty so had to stand in a tent like a naughty boy:)
Overall bike time was 7hrs 34m
Had trouble taking off my bike shoes and putting my Nike Pegasus 34 on as my fingers were all numb on my left hand.
It then dawned on me that I now had to run a marathon! Are you nuts? Haven’t run a marathon since 2000 when I was a lot younger. Anyway I had no choice and set out slowly through all the crowds that lined the castle wall. Felt as if I was running so slow but I didn’t mind as I was moving forward. The legs started to wake up after 5 minutes and the cramp in my left foot went away and I felt good - amazing support from the crowd who all cheered my name throughout even if they were shouting ‘Sideshow Bob’!
The run is majority up hill with 4 laps of a 10k loop. I ran the entire first lap, took bananas, coke, red bull and water at every feed station which really helped. Lap 1 was hard so walked some hills on the 2nd. Lap 3 I ran a little more and by the time I’d reached the 4th lap I was so pumped with excitement that I ran all the way (albeit slowly)
Remember I am 97kg so really I’m built for sprinting 100m.
It was dark on the final lap and as I approached the finish line my Dad and mate Pascal were there to give me the last words of encouragement. I sprinted the red carpet and raised my hands and finished with a huge smile on my face! I am an Ironman and it feels great!
My marathon time was 5h 34 and ended up with a finish time of 15hrs 3 minutes. I’d conquered the hardest IM on the circuit with 2 hrs spare.


My mate drove me down to Tenby and I walked to transition . Faffed around a little and managed to deflate my tyres using somebody else’s floor pump 😆 great start! Made my way to the self seeding start line - it’s 6.30am and there are literally thousands of spectators there all buzzing overlooking the beautiful bay - the sea is calm and the sun still hasn’t really come up yet so all felt quite mystical. The Welsh national anthem was sung and sent shivers down my spine (my mother is from the valleys) and the rolling start began. My mate Pascal who completed IM Wales 2017 was there to video me through the start line and I was visibly pumped.
First lap - got kicked in head on the way to the first buoy then overcooked the 2nd buoy towards the lighthouse but stayed in Zone 1 all the way - Aussie exit around Goscar Rock then really enjoyed the 2nd lap with the sun now shining down and felt I was quicker - although both lap times were pretty identical and ended up with 1h 23 - Ran from the beach up the zig zag path, grabbed my Pink bag from the peg, stripped off my wetsuit then jogged through a zillion supporters lining the streets to the transition zone - Jo Murphy the IM compare was there and commented on my hair as I ran through the transition zone to pick up my bike. ‘The Best hair in Ironman’ were her words!
Took my time in the tent (big day ahead) and got my composure before donning the helmet shoes and gloves and venturing out to my trusted Blue Planet (X) bike 😀
Weather was good - cloudy but not cold - the route out to Angle is supposed to be the flattest section of the day but didn’t feel like it at the time - the hills just keep coming - they may not be too big but there’s lots of them - also a sneaky headwind meant people were burning up the legs too quickly without knowing. My nutrition bag was full of home made wraps with peanut butter and jam, Soreen bread. flapjacks & Cliff Bar Block Shots. Garmin beeped every 20 mins to remind me to eat which is a brilliant tip go anyone wanting to go long.
Feed stations were great where I ate bananas, Enervit bars (IM sponsor) and took on more water & energy drink.
The big loop took us back towards Templeton and Narberth where those cheeky hills just got steeper and longer. This all culminated in the two big hills - Wisemans Bridge is the hardest of the two around 16% but you just have to grind it out for a few minutes and I simply focused on the White House at the top of the hill ! There’s not much time to rest once you reach the peak as it’s a fast technical decent then you are into Saundersfoot for the 2nd big hill which feels like you are in the Tour de France with fabulous support making a tunnel as you climb - I high fived all sorts in fancy dress including dragons, Storm troopers and Cheer-leaders!!
Back down on the decent into Tenby I relaxed the legs and ate more energy bars.
Then we rode out of town for the 2nd 60k loop - a repeat of all the tough climbs again.
Felt good all the way round and even picked up speed a little as I’d paced myself on lap 1.
As I approached the Big Saundersfoot hill for the 2nd time I saw a man in a bright orange jacket that looked remarkably like my Dad - thought I was hallucinating as I was on 175k by this stage - it was my Dad!! He’d come all the way down from the Wirral to surprise me and cheer me on. What an amazing moment and it literally reduced me to tears of joy as I finished the climb and headed back into Tenby. My approach into transition was too quick and I was awarded a 1 minute penalty so had to stand in a tent like a naughty boy:)
Overall bike time was 7hrs 34m
Had trouble taking off my bike shoes and putting my Nike Pegasus 34 on as my fingers were all numb on my left hand.
It then dawned on me that I now had to run a marathon! Are you nuts? Haven’t run a marathon since 2000 when I was a lot younger. Anyway I had no choice and set out slowly through all the crowds that lined the castle wall. Felt as if I was running so slow but I didn’t mind as I was moving forward. The legs started to wake up after 5 minutes and the cramp in my left foot went away and I felt good - amazing support from the crowd who all cheered my name throughout even if they were shouting ‘Sideshow Bob’!
The run is majority up hill with 4 laps of a 10k loop. I ran the entire first lap, took bananas, coke, red bull and water at every feed station which really helped. Lap 1 was hard so walked some hills on the 2nd. Lap 3 I ran a little more and by the time I’d reached the 4th lap I was so pumped with excitement that I ran all the way (albeit slowly)
Remember I am 97kg so really I’m built for sprinting 100m.
It was dark on the final lap and as I approached the finish line my Dad and mate Pascal were there to give me the last words of encouragement. I sprinted the red carpet and raised my hands and finished with a huge smile on my face! I am an Ironman and it feels great!
My marathon time was 5h 34 and ended up with a finish time of 15hrs 3 minutes. I’d conquered the hardest IM on the circuit with 2 hrs spare.

Tucked into a nice slice of pizza then headed straight to the pub for a well deserved beer which tasted great as I’d stopped drinking for a few months.
We rode back 5k to the AirBnB in Saundersfoot which sounds crazy but actually felt good to spin the legs !

What a race what a place as what an amazing level of support - would highly recommend it for anyone wanting to test themselves!

Cheers Martyn

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