UltraHumps: Ultra Widow

The partner of an Ironman is often fondly referred to as an Ironman Widow or Widower, due to the amount of training the athlete completes, so I thought I’d share my story as John’s partner or Humps or UltraHumps as I have often heard him called lol.
In 2013 I went to my first Ironman event ever.  I had visions of partying up after the event to celebrate with John.  The last thing I expected that night was to be picking him up from the bottom of the shower where he collapsed and was vomiting. Holy crap I told him “I think you need to hook up with a nurse or a doctor not a cop”, only for him to say when questioned why he didn’t pull out was “It’s all about the free t-shirt and towel at the finish line”!

Over the next 4 years I got over my initiation to his crazy Ironman obsession and have attended a number of them with various family members and friends supporting John.

But the event itself is only the tip of the iceberg.  It is the culmination of hours of training, and I mean HOURS of training.  Poor John has had to balance the demands of work, travel, family commitments, training and most importantly of all, keeping a very demanding partner happy lol.

If I’m honest I struggled with the hours he spent training for and doing events.  I saw it as his real passion and I actually became unreasonably jealous of his commitment to his sport.  I made it difficult for him to fit his training into our time together and placed unrealistic expectations on him as a partner.  Luckily I got over myself and instead of putting up barriers I saw his passion for Ironman as the positive it has been for John, not only physically but for his mental well-being as well.  I take an active interest in his training regime and I even ride my bike beside him when he does his training runs, but only if it’s no longer than two hours.  We even trained together completing laps around the Island when on our hired mountain bikes when in Rarotonga.

The age old saying “if you can’t beat them you may as well join them” came to mind for a fleeting nano second and has never returned. John often jokes about buying me an entry for Ironman for Christmas, but in reality he knows I’m quite happy watching from my fold out chair with a chilly bin full of food and cold beers.

UltraHumps at the 2016 Ultraman Awards Ceremony wearing the pounamu taunga given to him by by his partner Mel

As John gets ready to head off to Ultraman Australia this week [by time of publishing John is already in Noosa – Ed], I don’t have the same level of anxiety as I did last year.  He has trained hard and listens to his body more now than he has in the past.  I still can’t bring myself to go and watch him put his body through the demands of this epic event, but I will be following his progress closely on-line.  I’m so proud of what John has and continues to achieve with his sport.  He is the most selfless person I know, putting himself out there to raise money for the Fallen Soldiers Trust.

All the best honey from your number one fan.  Well your mum probably takes that title so make that your number two fan, not just an Ironman Widow, but also an Ultraman Widow x.

– Mel (UltraHump’s Partner)
If you wish to donate to UltraHumps charity of the Children of the Fallen Heroes, which is what the 3+2+1=Charity is all about, then please use the enclosed link.   100% of the funds raised goes to the cause.  UltraHumps is paying all other expenses himself.  https://givealittle.co.nz/cause/ultrahumps

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