On Saturday, June 20th, James Lawrence (aka, the Iron Cowboy) will be raising awareness about childhood obesity by completing his 15th Ironman-distance triathlon in a row - in his 15th different state - as he attempts to complete 50 full triathlons in 50 days in 50 states. And day 15's triathlon will take place in St. Charles County, Missouri!
At 39 years old, James already holds two Guinness World Records for most half-Ironmans (22 in 30 weeks), and most full Ironman-distance triathlons in a single year (30 - in 11 countries). But now James is pushing his physical limits by attempting to do something that has never been done by a human before. That’s 2.4 miles of swimming, the 112 miles of biking, and then 26.2 miles of running...fifty days in a row.
"Why?," you're surely asking yourself.
One answer James gives to that question is that he is raising awareness about America's national disaster of childhood obesity and raising money for the Jamie Oliver Food Foundation. As the father of five young children ranging in age from five to 12, the issue is important to him. “The shocking statistic is that we are going to be the first generation that is going to bury our kids due to this,” he said. “Heart disease is the number one killer.”
A second answer that he gives is, "Why not?" James does not claim to be a lifelong endurance athlete. A wrestler in school, he recalls a 2004 Thanksgiving Day 4-miler he ran with his wife and two children. "You're pathetic" was his wife's loving review of his performance. Wanting to set a good example for his kids, he began more serious training. Five months later he completed his first marathon and soon found triathlons. He completed his first Ironman-distance triathlon in 2008 and by 2014 he had qualified for the 2014 Ironman World Championships in Hawaii. "Why not?" is his standard response to a challenge.
And now James' athletic journey brings him to St. Charles County, Missouri. After his 2.4 mile lake swim and 112 mile ride, James hopes to start his run from Fleet Feet's O'Fallon location between 2:30pm and 3:00pm at 6:30pm and he would love some company during his first 3.1 miles! Over the first few days of 50.50.50, James' average pace is about 12 minutes per mile, so don't be intimidated by his Iron Cowboy moniker. His journey is about completion; he's not moving at PR speed! To participate, please register (for free or including a $5 donation). Join him to help combat childhood obesity, set a good example for your own kids, or simply be a part of athletic history. You may make it into his movie!
While you're waiting for James to start the run or after you finish, we invite you to stop in the one-stop-shop shared by Fleet Feet and Swim Bike Run and take advantage of our Grand Opening sale. After selecting at least $10 worth of great items to help you enjoy your swim, bike, and/or run, the first 50 people to check out at each store will receive an envelope containing a coupon that will save them $5.00, $70.30, or $140.60 on your purchase - or a free prize. Note the 50.50.50 triathlon theme. :-) Fleet Feet envelopes may contain coupons that award customers one of the following prizes: $30 Trigger Point rollers, $30 Craft arm coolers, $25 Amphipod sack packs, $20 Orb massage balls, and $7 Nuun tubes.