8:23:31: That’s how long it took Sam Long to finish Ironman Arizona, where he finished tenth. After the swim he was behind as almost always, on the bike he made up a lot of time but during the run he struggled and lost a lot of time again and thus positions. He even spent some time on the sidelines fighting cramps.
“‘I think the most important thing is that you can cross the finish line smiling’. This ended up sticking with me throughout the day. I felt I had done things pretty well in the preparation and came with the main process goal of putting together a good marathon. Alas, not meant to be, I started dealing with back pain at mile 10 on the bike and it just got worse from there.”
“For being my slowest run (walk) it was also the most painful. I refused to quit though and feel I did the best I could of getting the most out of myself with what my body gave me. For this, I feel proud of what I did. I don’t have more answers yet but the full accountability is on me to be better. Thank you to all the age groupers on their first lap who encouraged me and to the podium of guys and girls.”