Coach Maggie Races Ironman Kona AND Ironman 70.3 World Championships

Some people think that one full Ironman a year is enough, but not Coach Maggie. She raced at Ironman Mont Tremblant this year where she secured her slot for Ironman Kona and then after she completed that race she went to the Ironman 70.3 World Championships.  


We are all so incredibly proud of Coach Maggie's amazing feat! She not only qualified but completed both the Ironman and 70.3 World Championships while continuing to teach music and coach our triathletes this year. A HUGE congratulations Maggie. Time to rest and recover!


Here's Maggie 70.3 World Ironman Race Report:

On October 28, 2022, for the first time, I was called a “badass” as a compliment from a younger competitor while trying to stay warm in the dark and cold early morning before the swim start in St. George’s 70.3 World Championship race in Utah. To be part of this all-female race was incredibly exciting! Most of us were wrapped up in layers of clothing, tuques and mitts as we awaited our swim wave start. There was a strong sense of camaraderie in rising to the challenge of the day ahead.

The Pros led the way starting in semi-darkness! My wave of dancing 60–64-year-olds cheered in unison as the sun peaked over the red rocks just in time for our swim start, bringing with it the promise of a beautiful day.

The St. George course is quite appealing for the given distance. The scenery is eye-catching with expansive desert and grandiose rock formations. The biggest challenge on the bike portion is climbing up the tail-end of Snow Canyon with its 12% grade – but then the real fun begins with the fast descent into town. The run course is two laps of an up and down. Up was fine. Just keep the legs moving. Down was highlighted by a run through the golf course on spongy grass.

Heads up to Canadian Pro Paula Findlay who placed 2nd. Female athletes numbered 2,218, representing 33% of the total athletes (this small percentage of women was driven home for me by the 70.3 World Championship T-shirts Ironman sales: women had a choice of two colours...when I looked over at the men’s table there was a choice of 8 colours!)

Grateful to have had this experience!

This race was preceded by the Ironman World Championship in Kona, Hawaii, 22 days earlier. I did this race 6 years ago and for some crazy reason wanted to come back so this was a dream come true!

This iconic venue once again lived up to its reputation of being hot, humid, and windy. I found myself overheated and dripping wet from the humidity on my first 6 am training run.

This is the first time Kona has designated a race for women (Oct 6) and for men (Oct 8). Although we had 1,325 women at the start line, we were joined by 1,267 men 25-29, 50-54 and 60-64 on “our” race day...this was noticeable. The men had the last swim wave starts but the faster men started passing the women on the bike course in large numbers on the Queen K.

This is one of my favorite Ironman swims – the underwater viewing of colorful fish keeps you distracted, and I love not having to wear a wetsuit, and being able to feel the warm, salty water on my skin. The 3.9 km swim is over too soon and off I run to grab my bike gear bag and head into change tent to switch “gears”. My sister is volunteering here, and I spot her - after a quick hug I am off to my bike and on to the start of the long ride towards Hawi (the 90km turnaround).

This is a tough course – it doesn't look like it on paper but factor in the heat (90 + degrees and 85% humidity) and the winds (women lucked out on having the winds on their race day whereas the men’s race was notable for the lack of wind...hence all the new records!) plus the at times mind-numbing scenery of lava field after lava field (!), this course should not be underestimated. Nutrition and hydration play a key role in the success of your day.

Finally, the 180 km is done and back into the transition zone where we must rack our own bikes this time (a shortage of volunteers showed up in a few St. George, our bikes were racked for us). Back into the transition tent where time moves slowly...mentally and physically. Looking around at the other women I can see I am not alone in this feeling!! Finish tying up shoes and off to run the 42.2 km. Well, run as much as I can. The run along Ali’I Drive is beautiful. The ocean view doesn’t fail to lift your spirits along with the crowds with their positive cheers. Then the “Walk up Palani”, the one steep hill leading to the Queen K. highway, and then the long journey out to the Energy Lab. Entering the Energy Lab is like entering another feel like you’ll never come out!

It is only when you finally exit the Energy Lab that you know the finish line is actually waiting for you...all you gotta do is keep running! 

Females racing the Ironman World Championship – 1,325 out of a field of 5,204 athletes. Women represented 25% of total athletes. Chelsea Sodaro (World Champ) put the spotlight on females in this sport in her speech at the Awards Ceremony. She is a 33-year-old mom who struggled at times to achieve the pinnacle of this sport. I hope we continue to encourage women of all ages to pursue their goals, to challenge their limits rather than limit their challenges, and to support one another.

Once Maggie recovers you will find her on the pool deck coaching our athletes toward their goals.


Julia Aimers
CSEP Clinical Exercise Physiologist
CSEP High-Performance Specialist

Certified Triathlon, Cycling, Yoga and Swimming Coach
USA Cycling Level 2 Coach
Training Peaks Accredited Coach

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