AT just 25 years of age, former Robertstown local, Lachlan Ireland will be the youngest ever competitor in the Ultraman Australia Competition to be held at Noosa in Queensland on May 11.
Raised on a family farm in Robertstown, the second of four boys, Lachlan made the big move to Brisbane in 2012 for further opportunities, and with his extensive list of past competitions, has certainly been successful.
Competing in triathlons, Lachlan has participated in the ‘Big Red Run’ in the Simpson desert, running 250 km in just six days, also running the Nerang 50 mile race placing third.
He has competed in the WA Iron Man in Bunbury, the Gold Coast half marathon, and also become a Queensland Olympic distance state champion in the 20-24 age group.
“I love doing these competitions, the adrenalin it gives you is surreal,” Lachlan said
Lachlan first started running a few years ago as his night shift job working for Virgin in operations was mentally draining, so found it to be a mental escape.
He would also go on bike rides with groups of friends as a ‘social thing,’ until one day something happened that would change his path altogether.
“I was out riding one day with my friends and got hit by a car, I ended up with a few broken ribs,” Lachlan said.
“The insurance money paid out and I decided to buy a triathlon bike, and the very next day, I signed up for my first triathlon.”
With a vast list of accomplishments, Lachlan, along with 1000 others, decided to apply for the upcoming Australian Ultraman competition in Noosa, with only five to be invited to compete.
“On the day the invites were sent out, I didn’t receive an email, so was extremely disappointed, but I decided to ring the coordinator and found out they had just sent my invite to the wrong email address,” he said.
“It is an incredible privilege, at first I was relieved because this is something I have wanted for the past two years.”
The event, which is held over three days, will feature a 10km swim and 150 km bike ride on the first day, a 280 km bike ride on the second day, and a 84 km run on the third day.
Lachlan began training 29 to 35 hours a week, swimming five to seven kms in the mornings, and the rest riding.
“I find you can’t really prepare for the running part, as it is more a mental battle than a physical one,” he said.
When he is not training, Lachlan is either working at his personal training business ‘Brisbane Strength Camp’, which is located in Brisbane CBD, or spending time with his four year old son, Harrison.
“He definitely copies me a lot with what I do, when he was just three, he competed in his first running race, a one km race in just seven minutes,” Lachlan said.
Lachlan also finds the time to play A grade cricket and also attends football training to keep fit.
When asked what his diet is like, Lachlan admits he is definitely not strict in that area.
“I could easily eat a block of chocolate or pack of Timtams a day, I guess when I train this much, it doesn’t matter too much about my diet, as long as I keep up the carbs.”
Before moving to Brisbane, Lachlan kept active in his local town of Robertstown playing cricket and football, and also coached the under 14s at Hamley Bridge Football Club.
He attended Eudunda Area School, and completed his final year of secondary school at Trinity College in Gawler.
“Growing up in the county is definitely something I look back on, I would move back in a heartbeat if there was more opportunity there for me.
“I believe living in rural areas definitely gives kids a head start in life, as they learn more skills and have to work hard for what they want,” he said.
Lachlan has come a long way in life, especially since his mum was told to abort him at 19 weeks as he was a ‘Rubella baby.’
From past traumatic experiences, Lachlan also donates and supports to the Allahna Madeline Foundation which helps kids who have been victims of domestic and sexual abuse.
A foundation close to his heart, Lachlan has also incorporated a watermark of their logo on his triathlon outfit.
With his dream of being the youngest ever to compete in the Australian Ultraman, just days away, Lachlan has advice for other country kids who have big dreams.
“Believe in yourself, if someone says you can’t do it, go out and get it to prove them wrong.”
• Pictured: Lachlan competing in past triathlons.