An Ironman-like schedule ... at work

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Matthew Logan, Post Falls, rides his bike along the Coeur d'Alene Lake Drive trail Saturday in preparation for Ironman.

COEUR d'ALENE - When Matthew Logan completed Ironman Coeur d'Alene 2010, he might have set a record.

Nothing to do with being the fastest or the slowest, youngest or oldest.

Is there a category for training the least? If there is, the 28-year-old owns it.

"I'm definitely in the running," he said, laughing.

The Post Falls man has two Ironmans to his credit, and two half Ironmans, so he knows what it takes to finish the 140.6-mile race.

And that, he says, is determination.

Because when he completed Ironman two years ago, he didn't even bother to train for the nine months leading up to race day.

Truth be told, he hasn't done much more this year.

He began training for this Sunday's Ironman a mere five weeks ago. His longest bike ride has been 15 miles.

"I started to bike the course last weekend, but I bailed out. The cars are going so fast by you on 95, I'm not real comfortable with that," he said.

He hasn't been in the lake. And as for running, well let's give him credit for hustling between two jobs. Must be some jogging in there.

While he lacks preparation, he's confident and relaxed.

"I'll make it. I just don't know what time. I don't have a goal. I just want to finish," he said. "I just do them for fun. I don't do them to go to Hawaii or any of that stuff. It's something to do. I've always been a goal-oriented person."

Logan has a few Ironman-like qualities, such as perseverance and a never-say-never outlook on life.

He needed it after suffering serious injuries in a motorcycle crash in 2006 during a practice run in St. Maries. A top rider with professional aspirations, Logan was going off a jump when someone crossed a track the wrong way in front of him.

He tumbled some 70 feet and snapped his right arm. He wore a cast for nine months and was a year in physical therapy. Doctors said his motorcycle racing days were over and he might not be able to use his right arm again.

Logan, though, is one of those guys who likes a challenge, so he decided upon Ironman Coeur d'Alene 2008 and its 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike ride and 26.2-mile run.

"My goal was to do Ironman, whether it be one-armed, whatever," he said. "I just wanted to do it. I told my physical therapist about it and he said, 'We can make that happen.'"

They did.

Logan completed that one, with two arms, with the more traditional six months of training, in 14 hours, 22 minutes.

He completed two half Ironmans in 2009, and then signed up for Ironman Coeur d'Alene 2010.

But between school and work, something had to give, and it was training. The week before race day, he finally retrieved his bike, which he hadn't ridden since August 2009.

"The tires were all flat. It was all covered in dust. It was a mess. I had to find all my tri gear, I couldn't find anything. My wetsuit was all folded up in my closet, I had to pull that out."

He sneaked in a 10-mile bike ride, took a dip in the lake to test the wetsuit, and counted on a twice-weekly running class to suffice.

"Needless to say, I was not really in the best shape, but I knew I could finish," Logan said.

The 2001 Post Falls High School graduate did - just in time, crossing the finish line in 16:35 and change.

So how, when most sacrifice work, friends, family and hobbies and instead become best buddies with the pool, the bike, and running shoes, in the name of Ironman did he do it?

Small goals, he explained. Swim one lap, then another. Bike 20 miles, then 20 more, then 20 more. It worked.

"I kept plugging away. My butt was sore," he said, laughing. "That bike was a long ride."

As for the marathon, he basically walked it.

"There wasn't much running going on," Logan said.

Determination will go a long ways, said the two-time Ironman.

"If you have a base level of endurance, that kind of carried over somewhat," he said.

Forgive Logan for his failure, if you call it that, to follow protocol and commit his life to Ironman.

He and a friend own and operate a food delivery business they started last summer, and he works the graveyard shift as a machinist.

"It's been crazy the last few months," he said.

His routine the past six weeks goes something like this: Go to his machinist job at 10:30 p.m., come home at 9 a.m., try to run or bike, sleep from noon to 4, deliver food for about 15 restaurants from 4-9 p.m., and finally, smuggle in a swim at the club.

All that despite an often aching right arm.

Not ideal, but hey, it works.

"Someday I hope that I can go into one and actually put in all the training," he said.

Meantime, though, would he recommend his method to others who face a similar, hectic, ultra-busy life, but have Ironman aspirations? Who don't want to swim, bike and run thousands of miles, but still want the title of Ironman.

Logan grins and shakes his head. There is no hesitation.

"No. No way."

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