Monday, January 18, 2010


13.1 miles left out of my 140.6 miles to travel that day. That’s what I said to myself a great deal . . . I’m basically done . . . While I may be at the absolute most difficult part of the entire race foe, I am at the end.

I have failed to mention out tri club enough in this Race Report. I have a great resource from some great people here in Louisiana and our tri club is a wealth of information with some super fast racers and many experienced peeps.

Vanilla was one of those and a really welcomed person to see as I headed out on my second loop. Charles (AKA Vanilla) really took me under his wing for my first IM. He would call me and check in to see how training was going, how I was mentally etc. And today he was there to see me race and finish. As I slogged along with my head down wishing I was done running he ran up beside me and pumped me up mentally telling me what I needed to hear. Vanilla has raced in all the NA IM races. As I slogged along he said to me “You can go faster. Your body can do more than your mind is letting you. Pick it up and you’ll see.” I did and it did. At one point I was (for me) flying! He stayed with me for a couple miles hitting me mentally with things we’d discussed for months, but I had neglected the past 10 or so miles. “Focus on pushing yourself until the next aid station. You got this!”

My time shows the pick up in that 3rd section of the run. Even with a more than 10 minute stop at the special needs bag I cut my next 6 miles by about 40 seconds per mile, or somewhere around that. But more than that – I felt good, I felt oddly strong.

About mile 16 my best friend Brent and his family had found a VERY bright spot on the run course to cheer me on. Oh how awesome it was. I was running well and in the distance I saw a triage of people, but couldn’t really make out who it was, but they were hollering like I was a rock star . . . As I got closer I saw it was Brent, Christy (his wife) and the babies’. They have 3-year-old twins, and a new born. And they were clapping and the babies were jumping up and down. It is so hard to describe and explain how happy I was. My face didn’t show it. More over my face probably seemed discouraged and upset, however I was elated and so surprised.

I continued the strong pace I had begun the second loop with until a VERY unfortunate episode.

I have literally only one complaint about IMFL. I had such an awesome experience and I will do IMFL several times in my life because it is close to home and it will always be my first.

The Park . . .

As I entered the park I realized how alone I really was. It was pitch black. When I say pitch black, I mean – it was not much different than the jungles in the panama canopy. Literally I found it difficult to see my tennis shoes as they patted the ground.

My cousin Michael and best bud Roddy had ridden out on Mountain bikes to check in one me. They commented the next day that they also couldn’t see a thing back there when looking for me.

I was rolling along until I ran up on a nice lady who was walking. I didn’t hear or see her. I bumped her from behind. She screamed and I pulled my hamstring on my right leg. I comforted her because she had no idea what just happened and then I set back off on my run and it was not going to happen.

I had pulled that muscle pretty badly and I had to stop and try and stretch it for the next mile or so in the park until I decided to ignore it (which did and didn’t work).

I finally got out of the park and was headed home!

I saw my friend Scum as I exited the park.

I also saw my new friends who were out cheering on their family member. I hugged them as I ran by and every time they saw me they would cheer for me. I saw them in their truck heading back to the finish at this time and they honked their horn for me.

My Momma was also at the exit of the park. She is so cute and such a great Momma! I love you.

I began to count down. As I would pass the mile markers I would mentally lighten up and have more and more fun. My cousin Michael was taking iphone pics of me and I began to cut up the further and further along in the course I got.

At one point I met a really nice dude who I forgot his name, but he had dome a couple IMs but came down with a nasty blister this time and was running about my speed. We talked for a couple miles and then he left me in the dirt.

My main man Luke (I call him Skywalker) was riding out to see how I was doing. I love that dude. Skywalker is talented and gifted. He finished in 10:15 or something like that at IMFL 08 and it was his first IM and he “just had fun” in that race. I am looking forward to seeing what he is capable of when he tries to tear it up!

But, right now he was making me laugh and cutting up keeping my mind in the right place. It is hard to not love this sport with people like him and all the other folks I’ve mentioned in this Race Report. I am a lucky guy to have such good friends that like this insanity called triathlon.

I knew I was home free as far as finishing. I had set a goal of sub 16 hours because I really had no idea what to expect AND because at New Orleans 70.3 I finished in 7:30 or something like that and I figured doubling it plus one hour would be a responsible goal. NOW – I did do New Orleans 70.3 with a broken foot . . .

For nutrition the last 4 miles I took in Coke and chicken broth only. I smiled. I ran in disbelief a bit. I hurt – My hamstring was kicking my butt and my feet were sore, but none of that mattered. I was having fun.

I could see the lights near the finish. They seemed so much brighter this time around. The last three miles were a given, but I wanted to finish strong. The crazy stretch on front beach road was ROCK N and Rolling!!!! People were so drunk and I was envious. The women who were attractively dressed and provocative were a little less attractive and a lot more sloppy now, BUT – they were still so much fun!

As I made the turn onto Thomas Drive I can’t explain exactly where this came from, but I was in an all out sprint. For me that means I was moving about as fast as most average people ran the entire run, but my big lard butt was MOVING!!!! I saw family – I saw friends – I hollered, I high fived!

I made the U-Turn to head into the FINISH CHUTE and I was P-U-M-P-E-D!!!! My teeth were clinched. My eyes eye piercing. My lip was in a snarl. My hands were in fists as if I was about to fight a 12 round fight. My shoulders were flexed and then I turned into the chute and I began to yell uncontrolled.

I saw the people in the stands and some were screaming for me and others were in shock that this big ole dude with a crazy look on his face was screaming like a maniac!!!!!!!!!!

As I crossed the finish line I yelled – “IAM AN IRONMAN!!!!!!!!” I AM A IRONMAN!!!!!!” and Mike Reilly said . . . “Yes Chris Boggs, You ARE and Ironman.”

When I weighed 452 lbs I decided that I wanted to lose my weight and I wanted to finish an Ironman race.

I’ve seen many people lose weight and then begin doing triathlons, but I began doing triathlons to lose the weight. IN the beginning when I was 425 lbs doing my first tri, I got a lot of looks and some hurtful comments – I think people thought I was not only fat, but deaf too! HA!

But more, I got positive support and I finished more than 50 triathlons and now I completed that goal of becoming an IRONMAN.

I’m not done.

I have another 40 lbs I want to lose and my next goal is to do all NA Ironman races including KONA in my lifetime – however long that may be.

Thank you to everyone who follows my blog and send my positive thoughts, emails, and responses. I am here with your help.

2010 my goal in sun 13 hr race at IM Arizona . . . To be continued!!!



IMAZ is a great race, especially now that it is in November...
Good luck with the weight!

Kurt said...

Found your blog about two weeks ago...glad I did. Very cool! Great job with all the tri's and especially IMFL! Keep on, keepin' on!!!

Is there a place with all your training? I'm trying to figure out a good program for a 70.3 (my first) this summer.


Anonymous said...

Did you know that the name CHRISTOPHER, in the original Greek manuscripts, means man of great strength and many great talents ?
Just wanted to make sure you were aware of that. Pre-August 2003, I asked my daughter what she thought her marriage would be like.
"I think it will be exciting". Those were her EXACT words. Oh my my mmyyyyyyyyyyy.
Little did she know. Little did you know, Boggsie. much love and hugs, mom Donna

amybee said...

you are an inspiration indeed! Sounds like an awesome, awesome day.

Damie said...

Again, I just wanted to say congratulations, Chris. You deserve this- you have worked so hard. And, that 1.5 mile stripper house? that is our Memphis house- we make sure to have girls down there every IMFL, complete with costumes and whips for your enjoyment. :)