My legs were hurting. I had never been this exhausted. I had to cry very quietly so my dad would not hear me suffering. I was on a mission and I was not going to stop. I had heard about this crazy thing called Ironman triathlon and I had decided to try the longest discipline of it. I was only twelve years old and loving every piece of my challenge.
Finally we ended up to my grandmothers house. My fathers bike monitor said we had been riding for 172 km. I felt betrayed. We just had to do an extra loop. After exactly 180 km of riding there was a huge smile on my face. I had experienced so amazing moments during that day, from a total exhaustion to the biggest joy you can imagine. I knew I was made for triathlon. The sport would bring so much happiness into my life. If I tried my very best every single day now onwards, maybe on some day I would be the toughest female ironman in the world.
Since that day riding on my pink little mountain bike it took 22 years before I did my first iron distance race. I never lost my passion towards triathlon, but the sport just gave me different kind of challenges. I did put my all to Olympic distance racing as I wanted to be the first Finnish triathlete in the Games. I travelled all around the world chasing the ranking points but ended up to slightly miss both Peking and London olympics. Suffering quite a many injuries during the olympic distance years did not make my task any easier. On the other hand all these challenges made my sisu even stronger.
I am very grateful for all the adventures triathlon has given me. It’s like living a dream as every day I am able to do what I love – put all my passion in swimming, biking and running. It is also incredible that I am not alone on this challenge, as there are so many incredible and passionate people along on this journey. I also have a huge honor to be a Laureus ambassador and as a part of our Team Sport For Good I want to try to give something good back to the world.