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Iron Insanity: B.C. woman becomes first Canadian to complete equivalent of 20 Ironmans

Vernon B.C.'s Shanda Hill finished Mexico's gruelling double-Deca triathlon, a 76 km swim, 3,600 km bike and 844 km run, in 26 days.

Most triathletes spend many years slowly working their way up to the full Ironman distance. Countless hours spent in the pool, on the road, and on the trails zeroing in on that one big day. Now, imagine doing 20 Ironman races, all in less than a month.

Shanda Hill becomes the first Canadian to complete a double-Deca triathlon. Photo: Twitter/@infonewskelowna

That’s what Vernon, B.C.’s Shanda Hill did over the month of October in Leon, Mexico, becoming the first Canadian to complete the gruelling double-Deca triathlon.

The double-Deca race is an exact equivalent of 20 Ironman races: 76 km of swimming, 3,600 km of biking and 840 km of running. The event in Leon took place from Oct.5 until Nov.2. Athletes had 28 days to finish. They started every day at 7:00 am. The swim took place in a 50-metre pool.

Hill, 37, finished the event in 646 hours, 12 minutes and 20 seconds (just over 26 days). Of the 14 athletes in the race, she was the second woman and fifth overall.

Previously Hill had completed three Decas (the equivalent of 10 Ironmans) in her career prior to taking on the double for the first time in Mexico. She completed her first Deca in August of 2017, becoming the first Canadian to do so.

American Laura Knoblach won the double-Deca race in Mexico, setting a new female world record of 633:41:39.