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The One about Belgian Waffles – EPIC Dartmouth Competitor

April 6, 2013

Sam GydeThere are many success stories about ex-smokers turned runners, but how many stories do you know about an ex-smoker turned Ironman?

Sam Gyde, 38, can’t remember what his first race was but remembers how much work it has taken him to get to where he is today.  His journey to a world champion (Sam won his age group category last year at Ironman Kona) began 11 years ago.  He decided to make the transition (pun intended) from smoking roughly 50 cigarettes a day to working out for at least 50 minutes a day.  The rest is history.

Originally from Belgium, Sam calls Nova Scotia his second home.  He loves to travel and accredits his active lifestyle for allowing him the chance to meet new people, including his girlfriend, Karen Bedard, who will run the half marathon distance of their two-person Epic Team entry, “Team BAA-AA-AAH!”  (Sam will swim the 3.8 kilometers and cycle the full 180 kilometer bike route.)

With a full race itinerary this summer that includes Ironman Mont Tremblant and Ironman Kona, Sam chose Epic Dartmouth as one of his long distance races because it’s such a great community event and because it fits so well into his training schedule.  “I think Epic Dartmouth provides the perfect format for people preparing for races later in the season or for athletes that are considering a long distance race but don’t yet have the base to go through a whole marathon after a challenging bike course.”  We couldn’t agree more, Sam.

Sam originally signed up for Epic Dartmouth 2012 but had to drop out at the last minute after getting injured a month before the race.  “That is not going to happen this year,” he says.  “And if it is, I’ll volunteer to make Belgian waffles at the finish line or pour Belgian beer!”

From all of us at Epic Dartmouth, “Cheers!” to Sam and the rest of our athletes and volunteers!  We look forward to seeing you on June 30th.


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  1. Way to take the wind out of a nice story Mike.

  2. Congrats.
    FYI…I know A LOT of ex-smokers turned “Ironman” who have also KQed. It’s not that unusual