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For Dr Zuber Bagasi, the 2.4 mile swim, 112 mile cycle ride followed by a 26.2 mile run is not only a world away from his daily working life as clinical director for the Synergy Dental Group and its surgery in Ormskirk Road, Preston, but also miles away from the half-marathons he has run so far.
His driving force is to raise sponsorship cash for St Catherine’s Hospice and particularly to become a positive sporting role model for the Asian community. The 36-year-old, who lives in Bolton, said: “The Ironman route goes right by my house and I’ve watched the competitors in awe for several years.
“I’ve noticed very few Asian competitors so wanted to try to show that this kind of event is possible and that sport can be a very positive thing in your life.”
He trains daily with.the help of the specialist programme Ray McGloin at Tri-Rivington created and a diet from nutritionist Arshad Hafezi.
He added: “Everyone at Tri-Rivington was very welcoming to me but I really had no idea what to expect.
“When I first got on my racing bike, I didn’t even know how to put my feet in the cleats and kept falling off! And, although I’ve been training in the swimming pool, I’ve not swum in a reservoir yet.”
Dr Bagasi has also had to tackle some specific training challenges. His two experts have created special solutions to the eating and drinking conditions imposed by the religious fasting month of Ramadan just before the Ironman July date.
He said: “Ironman has already taught me so much, especially about myself. Now, I just want to do as well as I can – and enjoy it.”
To follow Dr Bagasi and his training and fundraising go to http://facebook.com/zuber.bagasi