My name is Alexander Åström-Karlsson and I’m 28 years old. I have been very interested in sports my entire life. When I was a little kid, my father let me try all kinds of different sports, like tennis, soccer, basketball, swimming, you name it. Most of the sports, I only took part in for a shorter while and the swimming discipline became my very favorite.
I started my swimming career before kinder garden and it lasted until I was nineteen. I participated in several swim competitions at a high level in Sweden since I was quite a good swimmer back then.
When I started study at the University in Stockholm I realized that there was hardly any time left for training, which led to none physical challenges whatsoever in several years for me.
Four years ago, I decided to pick up my life again and start exercising. By coincidence I came a across the lovely sport of triathlon. My friend took me to a short-distance-triathlon race after that I was hooked.
In 2010 I participated in my very first Ironman race. First there’s a swim race of 3.8 kilometers (2.4 miles) in the ocean, followed by a bike race for 180 kilometer (112 miles) and then finishing the race by running a marathon. I had a quite decent time at the debut and people told me that Ironman World Championship in Hawaii wasn’t impossible to reach in a few years.
From that day on, I had my long term goal set. To qualify for one of the toughest one-day-endurance- races on the planet. I committed myself to the sport to improve my swimming-, cycling- and running skills. Everything I did had the purpose to get one step closer to the Ironman World Championship.
In mid-august this year, I participated in my first official qualifying event for the Ironman World Championship, for which I had prepared for so long. I think I could say that I actually had the perfect race that day. I swam really fast and was up from the water with the pros. The biking was surprisingly fast as well. Not even in my wildest dreams had I imagined to ride the bike in 4:44 (180 kilometers). It really was my day in every aspect and I finished the race in a total of 9 hours and 16 minutes.
At the Hawaii-slot-award the day after the race, they presented the triathletes who had qualified for the Ironman World Championship. I was overwhelmed when they actually called out my name when announcing the qualifiers in the age group 25-29. My dream really came true and I was stunned and no one could be happier than me at that moment!
My mantra from that day is that ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE!
I did it but I now need a little help
I had set this as a goal to hopefully reach next year, so doing it now was a bit unexpected for me and since the event takes place already the 13th October this year, I was not all that prepared for the ex-penses it comes with to race in Kona, Hawaii…
Therefore I would be really thankful if you could contribute to make it possible to fulfill my dream. I would be forever grateful and hope that you will follow me in the race the 13th October!
Thank you for your help in advance!
Project location: Stockholm, Sweden