Motivation Monday: Dempsey’s Ironman Training!


Many of you know that I am an endorphin junkie.  I truly love working out.  From running to lifting weights to yoga to swimming, I love it all.  If it gets your heart rate up or makes your muscles burn, I have probably tried it.  That being said, I am always looking for my next fitness endeavor.  Always.  About a year ago, I joined Team Challenge and trained all summer for my first ever triathlon.  I had never ridden a road bike or swam in the ocean.  I was (still am) deathly of open water and fish.  And I knew absolutely nothing about the sport.


I completed TriRock San Diego last September and went on to compete in another triathlon a month later.   I was hooked on triathlon, but unfortunately, it is very much a summer sport and my training dwindled over the winter.   My fitness focus shifted to hot yoga, as I received my 200-hr yoga teacher certification and began attending class 5 times a week.

Around April, I began to get antsy.  I needed a new fitness goal.  I signed up for the Malibu Triathlon in September, but that didn’t seem like enough.  I needed something bigger.  Over the past two years, I have struggled with knee problems from running that have kept me in and out of physical therapy and have, frankly, put some of my major fitness goals on hold.  But I had been feeling better and something just felt right and I made the terrifying, exciting, monumental decision to sign up for a half ironman.


A half ironman is a triathlon that consists of a 1.2 mile swim, a 56 mile bike ride, and a 13.1 mile run.  That is a total of 70.3 miles.  (Can you believe that people do FULL IRONMANS?!) Anyway, in April of this year, I signed up for Miami 70.3, which will take place next October.

I hired a coach because I knew I couldn’t complete this endeavor on my own and am currently in my eighth week of training.  I will be honest… I am still 100% terrified.  My longest triathlon was an Olympic distance (1500 m swim, 20 mi bike ride, 6.2 mi run) and a half ironman is on a whole different level.  I have already begun to suffer knee pain and have had to adjust some of my training.  I wonder if I am crazy for signing up for such a physically grueling event.  I wonder if my body can handle it.  I wonder if my mind can.


But that is what life is about.  It is about taking huge risks and challenging yourself.  I do not believe that at this point I can fail, because I know I will give this training my 100% and if, for some reason, I cannot complete the race, I will still be successful because I TRIED.  So today I challenge you all to set a fitness goal that kind of, sort of scares you.  It will be terrifying, but the rewards are worth it.  I plan to keep you all updated on my training as I continue my journey towards Miami 70.3!


  1. June 17, 2014

    Hey, I totally know what you’re feeling!
    My first half-Ironamn is this Sunday in Mont-Tremblant! I’m nervous a hell, but so excited to finally be able to use all that training I’ve been doing for the past 8 months. It’s definitely going to be one of the scariest thing I ever done, but the feeling we’ll have afterward will be so worth it! For all you knee and injury problem, I’m sure you talked to some people, but having at least 2X30 plan in you week to stretch makes a big difference! I love reading all you progress and you training post! Keep it up!

    • dempsey
      June 17, 2014

      GOOD LUCK with you first half ironman! Congratulations on finishing up your training and finally reaching your goal!! 8 months of training!? I am sure you are going to kick ass! Let me know how it goes! I’ll be rooting for you from SoCal 🙂

      And thanks for the comment! I will be sure to keep you all updated on my training, obstacles, accomplishments, etc over the next few months!


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