Ben Hale, 31, from Wigton, is participating in this year’s Lakesman triathlon, representing the University of Cumbria. He will have to swim 2.4 miles in Derwent Water, cycle 112 miles on mainly flat roads from Keswick, out to the coast and back and, finally, run a full marathon, 26.2 miles, around a course in Crow Park, Keswick.
In his only other long distance triathlon, the Olympic distance Kielder, he came 5th and he is already training for the 18 June event under the watchful eye of Luke Russell, recreational assistant, university sports centre, Fusehill Street, who said,
‘Ben has been training vigorously for this year’s Lakesman, preparing himself not only for physical aspects of the event, but for the mental challenges he’ll face on the day’.
An ex-boxer, Ben is used to tough exercise and training programmes, but has never taken on the sort of distances required by the Lakesman. Running is his strongest discipline, with cycling a close second. For the sprint distance Carlisle triathlon in August 2016 he rode an old £200 bike, but has now treated himself to a red Super6Evo Cannondale. As for open water swimming, Ben will immerse himself in the lakes once the water temperature reaches 10C, training in his local in the meantime.
‘After hanging up my boxing gloves the gruelling day-to-day training for the Lakesman has kept me feeling alive and given me a new daily excitement, which I relish. I am very fit and not lacking in the speed department, which, along with my go forward boxing mentality, I believe is going to catapault me towards the front of the pack’.
The Lakesman was voted 5th in the Top Triathlons in UK 2016 by Racecheck – the Bible of triathlons and events.