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Woman attempts longest-ever triathlon

Norma Bastidas makes an Ironman sound easy.

The 47-year-old woman is currently trying to set the record for the world’s longest triathlon—3,762 miles from Cancun, Mexico, to Washington, DC. Compare that to an Ironman triathlon, which covers (only!) 140 miles.

Norma Bastidas aims to set the world's longest triathlon record this month.   Credit: Francisco Galvez/Notimex

Norma Bastidas aims to set the world’s longest triathlon record this month. Credit: Francisco Galvez/Notimex

Bastidas finished the 95-mile swim in the Caribbean on March 20. She crossed the U.S.-Mexico border about two weeks later, averaging 130 miles per day on her bike.

She’ll have ridden 2,932 miles before swapping wheels for running shoes and starting the final 735-mile leg of her journey. She aims to run through Washington, DC, by the end of April.

Australian David Holleran currently holds the longest triathlon record, which he set in 1998 when he completed a 26-mile swim, 1,242-mile bike ride, and a 310-mile run. If Bastidas reaches her goal, she’ll have more than doubled the record length.

She’s aiming for more than just pain and glory. Bastidas says she wants to raise awareness about human trafficking.

“Her triathlon route covers major human trafficking routes,” team member Alexis Rhyner told CNN. “It was also important to her that the route pass through both countries and both capitols to unify both nations to fight the issue together and take responsibility for what is happening in and between our two borders.”


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