The Ironman, Full-Distance, or 140.6 Triathlon is a long-format multisport event, consisting of a 2.4 mile/3.86km swim, 112 mile/180.25km bike, and 26.2 mile/42.2km run (a full marathon to finish!). Ironman triathlons are a huge test of mental and physical endurance, and require serious training and commitment. The format was first originated in 1978 in Hawaii. Official Ironman branded triathlons are organised by the World Triathlon Corporation (WTC). There are twelve official Ironman events in the USA. The North American Championships are held annually in Utah, and the World Championships are in Hawaii. Ironman triathlons have cut-offs at several stages throughout the race: the swim must be completed within 2hrs20minutes, and the bike course must be finished within 10hrs30minutes of starting the race; you must complete the entire race within 17 hours if you want to hear the immortalising words "You are an Ironman" at the end. There are other races over the same distance, which are organised by the International Triathlon Union (ITU). Although they aren't official Ironman events, they pose just as signficant a challenge.
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