Redefining the impossible

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Redefining the Impossible

Less than 1% of the population will attempt and finish an Ironman race in their lifetime.

If you’ve never heard of Ironman or are unsure about exactly how ridiculously strenuous (read crazy) it is, here is the long & short of it:

“70.3” refers to the total distance in miles (113.0 km) covered in the race, consisting of a 1.2-mile (1.9 km) swim, a 56-mile (90 km) bike ride, and a 13.1-mile (21.1 km) run. All on the same day and within a certain time limit.

Each athlete will have 8 hours and 30 minutes to complete the race. Any athlete that takes longer than 8 hours and 30 minutes to complete the race will receive a DNF (did not finish).

Why would anyone attempt this?

To quote her official Ironman 2024 race entry, “I decided to redefine the impossible. Learning new skills after 45 years is scary. I am doing this to challenge both my body and my mind. Doing this to build a legacy, but most importantly doing this for everyone who still wants to attempt something memorable, epic and legendary. Doing this for my father suffering from Parkinson’s Disease – a man who holds national colors for different sports. Sport humbles you. It brings you closer to bridging the gap between what you believe is impossible. A race of this stature embodies the true grit of the human spirit! I would rather fail trying than die with dreams.”

Being athletic for most of her life, PDSVISION’s Marketing Manager for Emerging Markets, Mellischa Gomes decided late in 2023 that she needed a new challenge. Having run a couple of half marathons over the last few years, she felt comfortable with the run. Swimming? Never swam technically correct or further than 25 meters. Biking? Last done when she had a few of her permanent teeth.

Living in South Africa where safety on the roads is dubious at most, and crime is plentiful, she decided to get a treadmill for indoor running. A few months after that she purchased a spinning bike. In September 2024 she finally started swimming lessons to work on the basics such as freestyle technique. After that she got a TT bicycle. Again, not wanting to ride alone for long distances she decided to get an indoor trainer. So, there were absolutely no excuses for the running and cycling part of her training program. Her hometown is Mosselbay, so open-water swimming was next on the list of scary stuff to combat.

Finally, she signed up with a coach – a fellow Ironman Elite athlete who understands triathlon.

She currently trains around ten to twelve hours a week. These hours are spent on all three disciplines – swimming, running and cycling. A lot of training happens before sunrise. Getting up at 4:30 to cycle or run while the rest of the house is asleep. For her first Ironman on November 17, she will need dedication, perseverance, and a strong mindset, all traits she uses in her professional life as well.

PDSVISION is proud to support Mellischa in this amazing adventure! We’ll post updates throughout her journey.

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