"The miracle isn't that I finished, The miracle is that I had the courage to start" John "the Penguin" Bingham, famed runner and writer...

Click here to hear the late great Noble Red Skelton's rendition of the Pledge of Alegiance


What is An IronDad

History of Events



Training Journal

 Orange Belt Shrine Club

Peace Officers Shrine Club

Al Malaikah Shrine

Fellowship Lodge

Tour de Shrine 

Contact IronDad

"A Child's Smile Makes Each Step Of Every Mile More Than Worthwhile"

It was the media that dubbed me "IronDad" due to my training with my children in tow and my constant participation with the kids at the Shriners Hospitals For Children. It really took off after I finished my first Ironman Triathlon. At first I was a little apprehensive about the nickname but after a while I soon realized that it was a way to bring even more attention to my cause rather than to myself.
This cause is not about me, it is about the Kids!

Why do I do what I do? Please read.......
How do you make an IRONDAD?

Just follow these simple steps and presto instant Ironman!
Not so fast cowboy it doesn't work exactly that way, but it is possible to make some really noticeable improvements if you just stick to your plan. In a relatively short time you will realize that you have made significant progress in your quest for better overall fitness and each day will bring you closer to the realization of your goals. The most important thing to remember is NEVER quit. SETBACKS are INEVITABLE. Those lulls or "bumps in the road" are the time to adjust your program and gather information on how you can keep moving forward in your quest. I was able to change from 312 pounds and really quite out of shape to being 197 pounds and able to Swim, Cycle and Run 1614 miles from Canada to Mexico. This was done on a 37 day trek, dubbed The Tribute Triathlon. The main focus of my efforts was to let people know about the help available free of charge for kids at the Shriners Hospitals For Children. Through ongoing participation in various events I'm often able to gain some valuable media exposure for the Shrine and Shriners Hospitals For Children. This also gives me the opportunity to speak with the public about the availability of these wonderful and much needed treatment centers. I share this with you not to puff up my chest or to pat myself on the back but rather to show you that if I can do it you too can make progress towards your goals. You have to believe in yourself (I have to remind myself every day) before anyone elsewill. Depending on your goal or your starting point others may laugh and call you crazy. It's OK to have doubts just don't psych yourself out. Remember to take pleasure from the journey along the way to your goal. The finish line isn't the be all end all. It truly is the discipline and dedication of working towards your goal that needs to be appreciated and respected. Particularly by yourself. You can't achieve your destination for someone else. Otherwise you will dread every day's labor along the way. There are no magic pills or instant fix products out there to achieve your goals for you. You have to have a real desire to succeed no matter what your goal is.

After taking time off to recover from the
World Long Distance Triathlon Championships in Denmark (August 4th, 2001 see events) I took too long and got "Fat and Lazy about my training". I've been very busy as a husband and Dad to our three children, Master of Fellowship Lodge, President of Orange Belt Shrine Club, Ambassador-At-Large for Al Malaikah Shrine and Webmaster for all three. Those are all very meaningful and vital parts of my life. But there is no excuse(s) for not working out and staying in shape. Over the last few years I've received and responded to hundreds of emails and letters from people asking him how I achieved my goal of finishing the Ironman. I don't want to let those folks, my family, and indeed myself down by letting my training go completely. Again not everyone will appreciate why I do what I do. Some folks close to me even find it crazy and scoff at my training. Oh well, you can't let the "Nay Sayers" get in your way. They don't always see the benefits that you see yourself. As I've said before "Your journey and your goals have to be for you first". Well now it's time to set some new goals to go after. Just as always, I have found that if I don't have specific goals in sight that the arduous training schedule is very tough to stick with. So with much work ahead and a renewed sense of determination there is a new plan. This plan will be tough to achieve. But as cliché as it sounds, "If it was easy everyone would do it"

Remember, there is no dream without the dreamer!

Does everyday bring me closer to that goal? Definitely! Do I do everything in a perfect way and move forward toward that goal at the speed of light or with out setbacks and failures? Of course not! The main thing as I've stated before and I say again now is "NEVER quit. SETBACKS are INEVITABLE" There hasn't been a perfect person walking on this earth for quite some time so don't be to hard on yourself. The important thing to remember is to try and have more forward progress days than setback days. When you are tired, rest and pick up tomorrow where you left off. You can't do it all in one day. I had to learn that the hard way! Everyday for me is a constant struggle to stick on my program and work towards my goal. You have to convince yourself that the sacrifice it takes to succeed is less than the pain of not succeeding. It's that simple. "Don't ever give up on your dreams!" My dream is to let the world know about "The Worlds Greatest Philanthropy" the Shriners Hospitals For Children.
If even one child is helped and their life is saved and made whole, each step of every mile will be more than worthwhile.

Thanks for your support,
Fraternally yours, Mark

Copyright 2005 IronDad.org. All Rights Reserved