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Amateur triathletes who qualify for the Hawaii Ironman are a pretty easy bunch to label. Type A. Driven. Obsessive. Their training methodologies and mannerisms can’t be confined to their hours spent swimming, biking and running; some of it has to spill over into their personal and professional lives. So what line of work do these go-getters tend to go into?
Well, if you’re one of the athletes here racing on Saturday, I’d be on your best behavior: You’re towing the line with 49 lawyers and 27 police officers. Chances are that if you did reach the starting line at Kona, you are an engineer, which was the most popular occupation with 120 athletes. Coming in a close second were business owners (108 of them).
If you run into some medical problems on the course, you have a fighting chance of being near someone who can help you out: there are 61 physicians and 26 nurses registered to race(and if you just need to talk there will be one psychiatrist and five psychologists out there with you as well).
Triathlon seems like a natural fit for those in highly active occupations like firefighters (18) and fitness consultants (62), but 23 accountants and 31 bankers also found time to train amid the daily grind of deskwork.
Of course, there are always a few occupations that jump out at you. There will be one mortality review manager out on the lava fields Saturday, as well as two members of the clergy and an Australian postal employee. I know, it sounds like the beginning of a joke. But the truth is, no matter what these athletes do in between training sessions, they probably do it with the same determination and resolve they have out on the racecourse. They just can’t help it. They’re Ironmen.