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Slowest swim EVER

If you’re familiar with the world of Ultra Running, you’ve probably heard of John Kelly.

The Tennessee native is known for his extreme feats of endurance.

He’s twice finished the famous Barklay Marathon, has won the brutal Winter Spine Race, and holds numerous FKTs. (Fastest Known Times.)

And perhaps his most famous achievement is his attempt at The Grand Round.

One thing that most people don’t know about Kelly though, is that before his ultra endeavours, he was an accomplished triathlete.

He actually received his pro card, and raced as a pro at Ironman Arizona.

And what’s even more fascinating, is that he holds a very interesting record -

The slowest swim ever while still going sub-9 hours at the Ironman Distnace.

My mind was blown when I heard that.


But it just goes to show - You don’t have to be amazing in every single discipline to still do very very well.

Sure, we all want to try and get better.

And it definitely helps if you don’t have one huge, glaring weakness.

But as Kelly shows, having one event that’s weaker than the others doesn’t have to stop you from putting in some pretty impressive times.

Okay, by the average person’s standards, Kelly’s swim was pretty quick.

But the logic still applies.

Too many new and intermediate triathletes get put off competing (or even training altogether) because they have one discipline that lags behind.

They let this get them down.

Or they allow it to derail their training.

You don’t need to though.

In fact, you have two choices:


  1. Put some extra effort into bringing your weak event up to par. (Our swim, bike or run specific plans can help with that.)

  2. Don’t sweat it, and just get back to having fun in training.

We can’t all be great at every single thing we try.

There’s a lot to be said for just working hard, enjoying the journey, and not stressing over the bits you might not be as good at.



Brownlee Fitness


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