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Rutt overcomes physical challenges, completes Ironman triathlon

Photo Courtesy of Mr. Will Rutt ’08 | Mr. Rutt completed an iron man in July with a time of 13:37.26.

By Juan Carlos Ramirez ’18

Mr. Will Rutt ’08 overcame physical, mental and spiritual barriers to complete a full Ironman triathlon in Canada on July 24, 2016.

Mr. Rutt’s interest in the Ironman triathlon began when his father signed him up for an Olympic distance triathlon in Puerto Penasco, Mexico.

He said that he was out of shape at the time because he had recently arrived from Bolivia.

After finishing the race, Mr. Rutt felt an interest in the sport and began to work toward competing in bigger races.

He did three half Ironmans as a way to prepare his confidence for a full Ironman triathlon.

The Ironman triathlon consists of a 2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike ride and a 26.2 mile run.

Mr.Rutt said he finished Ironman Canada on July 24, 2016 with a time of 13 hours 29 minutes and 58 seconds.

Mr. Rutt said that the Ironman triathlon is the ultimate goal for every runner who runs marathons or triathlons.

“I have a lot of respect for people who do Ironman triathlons because those are very difficult,” said Drew Burns ’18. “I definitely have him in a higher regard. He definitely deserve a lot of respect for completing the Ironman because it requires a lot of training and mental strength.”

His real training began on January of 2016 and picked up in the months of June and July.

“It was usually 25 hours of active training, stretching, nutrition and recovering per week,” Mr. Rutt said. “I did the last four weeks of training on the road.”

Mr. Rutt took a road trip from Phoenix to Canada and made stops along the way.

He stopped and trained at Big Sur, Columbia River Gorge and Eugene, Ore. during the Olympic trials.

During his race, Mr. Rutt said he tried slowing down and taking in the beautiful sights.

“The swim was really good,” Mr. Rutt said. “I was just taking it all in at that point.”

He said that his first 90 miles of biking went great, but when he hit mile 90 he felt shortness of breath and nauseous.

When he began his run, he felt chest pain. The only thought he had was to complete the triathlon.

“There was a lot of dark moments,” Mr. Rutt said. “You beat yourself over your training, and you question yourself a lot. Then, there are moments when you think about finishing. At that moment of finishing made all of that worth it.”

After finishing the race, Mr. Rutt said he reflected and thought of it as a spiritual journey.

“It really mimics spiritual life,” Mr. Rutt said. “There are these moments when you’re on fire and then other times you feel everything is going wrong. It’s that back and forth which is transformational.”

Mr. Rutt’s accomplishment has also inspired other faculty members to go out and accomplish their own goals.

“I think it is amazing,” said Mr. Quentin Orem. “I think achievements like that make me want to see how far I can push myself athletically.”

Mr. Rutt said he really enjoys the Ironman because he was treated as a professional athlete, which he thought was a great experience.