Local triathlete training for Ironman World Championship

Posted at 5:35 AM, Sep 21, 2017
and last updated 2017-09-21 09:47:44-04

It's training day for Ashley Robota — in fact, most days are all about training. She's played just about every sport there is.

"I know how to run," said Ashley. "I know how to ride a bike. I thought, let's learn how to swim and call myself a triathlete. It looked enticing to me." 

Not only is Ashley doing them now -- she's winning. Now she's training for the Ironman World Championship.

"This is equivalent of the Super Bowl in the world of triathlons," she explained.

Only one percent of triathletes get to this level of a competition. To get here, Ashley had to win an Ironman sanctioned event. She placed first in her age group. She swam 2.4 miles in 38 minutes then biked 112 miles in five hours and 38 minutes. Then she ran a marathon, 26.2 miles, in just under four hours. 

"First of all, the athlete needs to want it," Bettina Warnholtz, Ashley's trainer, said. "As a coach, we can only take athletes as far as they want to."

Ashley has wanted to go the distance — and that she certainly has. 

"You definitely find some deep-deep dark moments out there when you question why you're doing this," said Ashley. "But there is no other feeling like crossing the finish line."