The Celtman! is an extreme triathlon which Keela have now sponsored for two years. It's an incredibly difficult endurance challenge - competitors swim 3.8k through freezing jellyfish-infested water, cycle 202k up, over and around mountains and finish it all with a 42k run over the Beinn Eighe mountain range.


This sort of challenge clearly isn't for everyone, so we managed to corner Bruce from Lomo Watersport UK (and an upcoming Celtman! competitor) and convince him to tell us all about why he had decided to go for it.


1.     What made you decide to take part in Celtman 2016?

I took part in two middle distance events in 2014 after much pressure from organisers. I had to get swimming lessons and start running as I had never ran before. 

One event was in Aberfeldy where the weather was terrible, so I found both the swim and cycle extremely hard. After that I vowed I would never do another one. 
Next event was in Bahrain! I decided to do this as my sister in law lives there and I knew it would be a one off. The finish was on the Grand Prix track. This one was torture due to the heat - But I loved it! 

I planned to go further last year but was stopped by bursting my toes and could not run, cycle or swim for two months then had an operation on my knee which put me out for another two months!
So I decided to look for something for 2016. I had heard about the Celtman and knew it was tough, one of the hardest events in Europe, but I decided if I could get a place it would be an amazing event to attempt (before I get any older).

2.     Have you taken part in a challenge like this before? (what did you take part in and how successful were you?)
Just the two events above - I just took part to finish.
3.     What are you hoping to achieve from the challenge? (any specific time target?)
To finish and try and enjoy the experience.
4.     Can you tell us a bit about the training you are doing in the run up? (best/worst/favourite training?)

Training takes up all my spare time, I've even had to plan holidays round it so I can continue to train. 

I started out at 6 hours a week, now I'm at 12 hours and this will increase more next month.


Because it is an early event a lot of training has been done over winter, so hours and hours spent in my garage on turbo. The water is still too cold to start open water swimming proper, so I'm still in the pool for now - however I have been doing some cold water swims to try and acclimatise myself as the water will be very cold on the day - these are just short 20min sessions.


I used to hate running but now I love it. I also don't train with music as it's not allowed on the day, this was hard at first but now I prefer the peace and quiet.

5.     Are you having any special diet to prepare?
I should, but I'm not as good as I should be. I've cut down alcohol (a lot), and also started cutting sugar from my diet as I need to lose some more weight for the day.
6.     What kit are you planning to take with you? And any reasons for this?

Wetsuit, neoprene vest, socks and hood for the swim as it's going to be so cold. Also discovered anti-Jellyfish cream which I will use, as the loch is infested with them in June.


Normal cycling kit for the ride, because it's so long tri-shorts would not be thick enough. Planning on taking 15mins at T1 to try and heat up after the swim and get dressed properly for the ride.


I'll be using compression shorts and socks for the run as most of it is uphill and uses different muscles. Also have to have waterproofs etc in my backpack for the run, so I'm going to use my Saxon jacket as it's very light and taped/fully waterproof.


Oh and midge nets as transitions are murder!


 With such an extreme course we're sure Bruce isn't the only competitor who is just hoping to make the finish line! 
Best of luck to everyone taking part - we'll be cheering for you all!


If you're interested in taking part in next year's Celtman! check out their website.