Now and Forever – my Ironman tattoo story

by Amy  - July 29, 2013

I don’t really feel like an Ironman.

I finished Ironman France but it feels like a dream. In fact, there are days when I can’t believe I finished that race. Isn’t that ridiculous?

It was just over one month ago. But most of the time it feels like a dream. I tell the story. I know that I did it but honestly it feels like a dream.

And that’s why … dum, dum, dum.


Yes … I went ahead and got the tattoo

For whatever reason the Ironman tattoo can be a heated subject among some triathletes. I say, don’t hang out with those triathletes. If I want a tattoo of whatever on my body that’s my business. If you want a tattoo of whatever on your body you go ahead … I have no opinion. Unless you happen to be my kid and then I might have an opinion because they are permanent so some thought should go into this process. A boyfriend or girlfriends initials or name … sorry probably not ever a good idea.

I did try to think of something that wasn’t the m from the ironman logo. We in the triathlon circle call that the m-dot. But at the end of the day that’s the race I did. And even if it is a corporate logo – this symbol is symbolic of this distance to me and that’s really all that matters.

Ironman Tattoo - Amy Says So
the m-dot

I also cleared this tattoo with my husband. He was totally supportive and after listening to me waffle about the design for a month he declared the final design very anticlimactic.

It’s my only tattoo … so far

Don’t get me wrong I love tattoos but I’ve never been able to commit to the idea of one image or symbol on my body. Plus I’ve met a lot of old guys who sort of regret getting tattoos when they were younger. I do think it’s a good idea to listen to  your elders 😉

But here’s how I feel about this. When I’m old and shriveled up and the tattoo is all wrinkly with my old lady skin I will be more than happy to explain to you that when I was 39 years old I moved myself under my own power for 140.6 miles non-stop.  What’s more if I happen to be unlucky enough to be completely demented in my old age hopefully some nurse will recognize the logo and know that at one time I was just slightly badass. Not because I have a tattoo but because of what I did before I got it. I hope that this will give me the street cred in the nursing home for an extra glass of chardonnay with my stewed green beans.

tee hee it’s so small and simple. I swear the whole thing took maybe 3 minutes.

Last tidbit about the design

It’s small and colorless. I could be all artsy and say that Ironman is a part of me so I didn’t color it in because I want me to show through. I know … barf, that’s stupid. Or I could say the truth which is that I tend to like simple graphic tattoo designs that are black on skin (which is true). Also, I was a little afraid of the pain (also true but I did go through natural child births so I’m pretty sure I could tough it out). Also I can admit that I couldn’t decide what would go inside because I don’t really want to have to explain it. So I thought about putting the french flag colors (I still might do this but I feel like I would want to match my shoes and socks with the colors … is that dumb?), I considered working it into an Eiffel Tower (rejected because the race was in Nice not Paris where the tower is), I thought about putting the date or the mileage in miles or even kilometers and I just couldn’t make up my mind. So in the end with my swimming pool being closed for 2 weeks and the bay being off limits due to a creepy algae bloom I just went and did it and kept it simple. 

So far I love it.

Remember how I said I feel like the race itself was a dream? Well this is my daily reminder. So far I love it. I put it on the inside of my leg instead of the outside because it’s easier for me to see. So I see it all the time and it reminds me of what I did, what I can do, and to get myself back out there and get to work. 

Ironman Tattoo - Amy Says So
See if it was red white and blue inside could I still wear pink socks? I’m not sure.

So for now that’s it … So do you have an Ironman tattoo or will you get one after you complete the race?

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Amy Stone (she/her/hers) is a life coach who helps adults in blended families. She is a mom, step-mom and a step-grandma. Other random fun facts include that She is a 7-time Ironman triathlon finisher and many many marathons and shorter races. She created

    • Yay! I’m not yet sure if that’s “the big race” for 2014. Especially if Bethany is in for 2015 but there are some locals who are signing up for it so we’ll see.

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