The Will to Succeed

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Amany Khalil Earns a Medal at the Barcelona Ironman Challenge

Cairo West Magazine salutes this outstanding sportsperson for her impressive achievement in Barcelona last October. We catch up and learn more about what drives Amany Khalil to compete.

CWM: How does it feel to successfully complete the Ironman Challenge?

AK:  I never felt so confident or strong in my will power and gut feeling as I do now after crossing that Ironman finish line. The impossible has become possible for me, now that I have managed to win an Ironman medal, especially at my age.

Were you the only Egyptian to complete it this year, or the only one in your age group?

I was among 19 Egyptians to compete in the Ironman. Twelve men and seven women. I was the oldest of all. And from the women I was the only mother, the rest of the women were between 24 to 28 years of age.

How long did you need to train for?
It took me exactly 10 whole months to train for this race. I averaged 6 hours of training per day, beginning at 5am and ending at 7am and then taking a rest.  Afterwards I went to the gym around noon-time for two hours, followed in the evening by another two hours of cardio training. I aimed to be in bed by maximum 9pm. On Friday, it was the long rides which ranged from 3 to 6 hours of continuous cycling on the Sokhna Road,  with 5Km up to a maximum of 21Km of running afterwards.

When did you first become interested in sport and fitness?

I became interested in sports, in particular individual races, when I travelled to the States with my husband. I found people running in the streets early in the morning by themselves and I decided, “Why not, my kids are still asleep and my husband as well”, so I ran early in the mornings. That’s how I became a marathon runner. I picked up cycling in 2014, and the world of triathlons began to interest me. As swimming is included and it is my weakest sport, I decided to dedicate most of my training sessions to learn its technicalities correctly so as to apply them in the race.

What advice would you give busy people about finding ways to keep fit?

My best advice for busy people to keep fit is to manage your daily routine and find the right time for you to fit in at least a half an hour of sports a day. It will boost your system into performing better at work and home, and most important to improve your fitness and better your health. Consider it your daily medicine of life.

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