Well, the reaction from most people who know me when I announced that my next goal is an Ironman distance triathlon was “you’re crazy but I’m not surprised”.  Apparently I’m predictable!

One comment was a little different though, “good luck to you…. and to Erik” (Erik being my husband). That stopped me up a bit, particularly since the friend who wrote it presumably knew what he was talking about since his wife trained for a half-Ironman earlier this year.

It reminded me of an article in one of the national newspapers around the time of Challenge Copenhagen this year (here for those of you who read Danish) where a wife totally slags off her husband who she feels is neglecting her and their children due to his triathlon obsession! I don’t know the couple in question, but you could wonder which the worse sin is: obsessing with triathlon or publicly criticising your husband in a national newspaper, but that’s another issue…

At any rate, I did clear my Ironman Project with my husband prior to committing and I believe gave a fairly honest picture of what was involved. And, so far at least, he is 100% on board with the project. I wouldn’t be doing it unless he was. Honest!

I also wouldn’t be doing it if I had a proper job, a commute and small children.  At the moment my lifestyle provides a great deal of flexibility so, if there was to be a good time in my life to do an Ironman, that time is now.

First of all, I’m self-employed and I work at home. So I decide myself what projects I do (providing I get offered them of course), how I schedule my time, and I have my office at home so I don’t have any commuting time. I have a very relaxed attitude to planning my weeks/days. I figure out what I have to/want to do with regards to work projects, household chores, family life, friends and training and plan my time accordingly. If I feel like running in the morning then I might work a bit later in the afternoon. Or even take a whole day off work and work more on another day.

Secondly, my kids are teenagers so I have a lot more freedom/free time than I did say, 10 years ago. Mind you, it’s not that I don’t spend any time with them. Since I work at home I see them regularly as they are in and out throughout the day (more than they probably like!).

The one thing in my life that could prove to be challenging to coordinate with the training is my travel activity. I do usually try to get some training done when I am away on business trips but it is nothing like the amount I do at home. However I will take this as it comes. The peak training period will be next summer when I usually take time off anyway. Between now and then I’ll have to weigh up opportunities as they arise and figure out whether they can fit in with my training. I’m only going to do this Ironman thing once (and I mean it!) so as long as I can earn my keep between now and then, the training gets priority. Between now and the year-end I only have a one week trip scheduled so that is fine so far.

It’s going to be interesting to follow this side of things though as the training builds up. I guess the proof of the pudding will be whether you see Erik in a newspaper article next August with the headline “Frustrated Triathlon Husband: What the heck kind of wife did I end up with!”


A couple of months ago I was asked if I would do a Talk at TEDx Copenhagen 2012 about how physical movement made a difference in my life in dealing with cancer. If you are not familiar with TED and TEDx, TED is a nonprofit devoted to Idea Worth Spreading. Along with two annual conferences, it includes a TED Talks Video site. TEDx are local self-organised events (on licence from TED) that bring people together to share a TED-like experience.

I agreed, and you can see the result, my talk Running Strong here.

I also wrote a blog post for TEDx Copenhagen website about the experience which you can read here.

I hope that my Talk inspires you to start/keep moving and that you might even share it with your network to get them moving too! There really is no good excuse not to…..

This Very Big Announcement may not be that much of a surprise if you’ve been following my blog or are in my close circle of family and friends. But it is now official. My next big goal is to do an ironman distance triathlon (3.8 km swimming, 180 km biking and 42.2 km running) before my next birthday. More precisely Challenge Copenhagen on 18 August 2013. Put the date in your diaries folks: I will be needing maximum support and cheering on the big day!

This has not been a hasty decision; in fact, it has been rather a long time in the making. The first time I had the idea was back in August 2010 when I watched Challenge Copenhagen (the bike route goes close to our house) with my chemo-baldy head. Obviously, the time was not ripe at that point (there are limits to my madness after all) but it really did inspire me.

With Berlin marathon under my belt almost exactly one year ago, as you may recall, I turned my attention to (1) seeing if I could regain some of my speed in running shoes and (2) learning to swim crawl. The sub-text to the latter was that if I did ever manage to learn crawl, then I would go for the Ironman in 2013. I set myself a secret goal that if I could swim 1000m crawl by the end of August, then I would go for it.

I did, so I am.

So officially training starts today. In true Kirsten style the kick off was a good lunch in a cosy café with my Coach where we had a really good chat about, hmm, well, a lot of things really, some of which were related to Ironman training! And actually I don’t have any training in my programme for today at all, so it looks I start my training with a rest day!

Hmm, this ironman thing isn’t really that strenuous at all!