Sit down because you will feel terribly exhausted by the end of this article!
Some of you may know Johan ‘Taz’ Desmet, a super lean 49-year old Gentenaar, living in Cumming with his wife Helene and multi-trophies-holder Stella, their German pointer. They have a simple, cozy and discreet life, spending a lot of time outdoors. So far so good, right? What differentiates Taz from all of us is probably is ironclad determination. Only a few days ago, at the bucolic Lake Anna State Park in Spotsylvania, VA, our compatriot succeeded to be the only Belgian in the whole world to finish the Quintuple Anvil Ultra Triathlon more than 24 hours before the cut off time. I guess I lost you … Keep reading because his exploit is pretty exceptional!
The Quintuple Anvil Ultra Triathlon is an ultimate endurance event, over the course of 5 days, comprising 3 disciplines in direct consecutive order:
- 12 mile (19 km) swim
- 560 mile (900 km) bike
- 131 mile (211 km) run
The total distance equals five (5) back-to-back Ironmans [3.86 km (2.40 mi) | 180.25 km 112 mi) | 42.2 km (26.2)]…. Just saying.
So how does it work? Within 5 days, the triathlete must digest 703 miles (1130 km) starting with the swimming part at 7 am on the Monday morning and crossing the finish line no later than the Saturday at 7 pm. Nevertheless to say that our friend Taz had an amazing performance by completing the event in 107 hours and 19 minutes (translate it as 4 days, 11 hours and 19 minutes), with only 12 scattered hours of sleep… He finished second but is the first Belgian ever to accomplish such feat…
Taz is no stranger to competing in multiday endurance races, having been involved in the endurance scene for some time:
- 2016/15: Florida Double Anvil (finish 6th place in 2015)
- 2015: Virginia Triple Anvil (finish 3rd place)
- 2014: Oregon Double Anvil (finish 3rd place)
- 2013: Virginia Triple Anvil (finish 2nd place)
- 2013 Pinhoti 100 Mile Ultra Run
- 2013 Vineman 140.6
- 2012 TACA 126.2 Miler
- 2012: Virginia Double Iron (finish 7th place)
- 2012/11: Pinhoti 100 Miler
- 2011 Guts Reactor Run 100 Miler
- 2011: IM Louiseville
- 2008-2011: 35 ultra runs, 3 Iron, numerous 50 & 100 milers, 13 marathons …
Inspired? Start your 20-25 hours weekly all-year-round training [after a visit to your physician]! And don’t forget to congratulate Taz for his extraordinary performance and result!