UmYazan's Blog

The IronMan that didn’t go to plan.

Posted on: July 8, 2017

Well… all of my friends and family members know… I’ve been training and blogging about it for a while now… and working my buns off to my first full IronMan attempt in Austria. One of the most beautiful venues for an IronMan; and with fans lining up the climbs and the little towns and the finish lines, it would have been idyllic To Become One.

But, July 2, 2017 was not to be the day I would become one… it simply didn’t go to plan. Not because I gave up. Not because I couldn’t do it. Not because I wasn’t ready. Not because I wasn’t determined. But somewhere, 136km into the bike ride, with only 41 kilometers left, 7hours and 33 minutes into the competition, I didn’t make an invisible second cut off time and I was pulled off the road by the judges.

IronMan Austria has a longer cut off time. Meaning that the entire race, 3.8km swim, 180km bike, 42.2km run, must be completed within 17 hours:

2hr 20min for the swim

7hr 50 min for the bike

(Cut off swim + bike (90km) 6hrs

(Cut off swim + bike (180km) 10hrs 10min

6hr 50min for the run

Cut Off 17hrs

So how well did I fare with those numbers and what lessons did I learn?

I should try to swim straight! LOL! I swam the course in 1hr 47min. Here’s the LOL part… I over swam by 700 meters! Which means I swam 4.5km instead of 3.8km. So I could have been out of the water after 1hr 25min!

Transition Time was 11 minutes! I was aiming for under 7, but the transition area (where I get out of the swim and get to the changing tent, changes my clothes, grab my bike and get on the bike and start the bike course) was 700 meters away… so maybe I needed to be a little faster!


Always remember to smile for the cameras!

Onto the bike! I was so happy to finally be on the bike… I was aiming to finish bike course within 7.5 hours. But as the course wore on, I knew that it would take just a little bit longer, but that I would still make the cutoff. The bike was the real challenge, as the course included SEVERAL climbs including two major climbs that really took their toll on me. The first hard climb I was able tackle without having to get off my bike and walk. And then it was time for the ‘famous’ Rupertiberg. That alone should tell you enough about the climb. It is a 2.2km climb, at one point reaching a gradient of 14%. Yes… I had to half walk, half climb it. It HURT and I simply didn’t have the right climbing legs. It took me 21minutes to complete that climb. Did I mention that this was a 2-lap course? Meaning, I was going to have to do this climb again before getting to the finish line. I made a mental note that I wouldn’t give up when I would next tackle it. In total I completed 21 climbs. Total time on the swim + bike was 7hr 33min. Well within the time limits and I had 42km left and still another 2 hours to finish.


I am still struggling to understand which cut off point I didn’t meet. I was really upset because I didn’t give up… I was well within my time limits… I am sure there was an intermediary cut off time after a certain point for road closures. If only I knew about it, I might have maybe descended a little faster, run up the hill a little faster? I don’t know, but what I do know for sure is that THE NEXT TIME I DO THIS…


Big shout out to everyone that supported me. My IronMan Support Crew – Yazan my son, who accompanied me to Vienna. And my family… the ultimate support and encouragement.

Yazan at IM

Mira and Dana from KABS Fit Factory, my nutrition sponsors, who came from Jordan to cover the event live. And of course KABS Team back home, Nour, Nadine and Mazen.

Dana and Mira

Perrine and Pierre, who completed IM Austria in awesome times and who didn’t leave my side and kept me in their thoughts when they didn’t see me on the run course.

with Perrine and Pierre

My coach Ryan from RNR Sports, I wouldn’t have been anywhere near the finish if it wasn’t for his constant support and coaching throughout.


My Betty Designs sisters who were tracking my progress and sent messages of love and support and encouragement. And shout out to Kristin, Betty Designs founder and the original badass is beautiful, who designed my kit for my first IronMan!

My team from Umniah who cheered me throughout and sent messages and words of love and encouragement and pride.

Umniah Team

My Friday Triathletes who keep me going and serve as a constant source of inspiration that we CAN do it!

So many people to be thankful for… and if I missed anyone, I didn’t forget you, I was just so overwhelmed with all the messages of love and support from you all! Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!



1 Response to "The IronMan that didn’t go to plan."

[…] The IronMan that didn’t go to plan. […]

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