November 2013

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Iron Hawk Haluska A By Matt Weitzel dam Haluska, one of the University of Iowa's most decorated men's basketball players, achieved a goal he set a year ago, providing one of the greatest feelings of accomplishments he has ever felt. Haluska wanted to finish an Ironman competition in 12 hours: He finished the 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike, and 26.2-mile run in 11 hours, 48 minutes Sept. 8 in Madison, Wis. "It's probably the best feeling I've ever had," Haluska said. "There's no feeling in the world that compares. I played Division I basketball and ran track in high school; there complete his training and get a better feel for the transihas not been anything that I put my whole effort into for tions from the water, to the bike, to running. A sprint a full year where I felt this kind of reward at the end." triathlon consists of a half-mile swim, 12.4-mile bike, and 3.1-mile run; the Olympic distances are 0.93-mile That comes from a Hawkeye who won a Big Tournaswim, 24.8-mile bike, and 6.2-mile run. ment title in 2006, was a two-time All-Big performer (2006-07) and was named 2007 Academic All-American "The run is the hardest, and I think it's that way for of the Year. everybody," Haluska said. "You test your body, kind of a give-and-take. If you go too hard on the swim or bike, Haluska says his interest in the Ironman dates to when you might not have enough left on the run. My goal was he watched the Hawaii-based competitions on television to run the marathon all the way through without walkwith his father. ing." "I've always wanted to do one," said Haluska, who ranks Prior to registering for the Ironman event, Haluska had eighth in Iowa's career scoring. "Even when I was in colnever swum so much as a lap. lege, a plan of mine was to eventually do one, I just had to wait for the right time." "I went to the North Liberty pool and got a membership for a year to train," Haluska said. "I started working out Training for this test in physical and mental endurance and watching videos online. One thing that also helped began a year ago in Madison. me was that I know a group called ICOWS (Iowa City "You have to sign up for this event a year in advance, so Open Water Swimming). We swam out at Lake MacBride twice a week. a buddy and I woke up at 5 a.m. the day after the 2012 race and drove to Madison to register," said Haluska. "That was the most enjoyable part of the training. I got "We were in line with about 1,500 other people. They to meet some cool people, and we had a blast." thought we were nuts after we told them this would be our first. Will Haluska attempt another Ironman in the future? "My wife was supportive and I was committed to this 100 percent. Toward the end of my workouts in July and August, I was averaging six to seven miles in the water, biking 150 miles and running 35-plus miles a week." "I'm going to stay away from the full Ironman for a while because of the time commitment and having a family," Haluska said. "I might do a triathlon or even some halfIronmans. Haluska did a sprint triathlon in the Quad Cities in the spring, and an Olympic triathlon in the summer, to "I put my full attention and effort into this and I'm happy I did," he said. 29

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