Triathlete bounds back from stroke

RESILIENT: A stroke two months ago failed to stop Lennox Head’s Shane Flannery from participating in the Ballina Lions Fun Run Walk on Sunday.
RESILIENT: A stroke two months ago failed to stop Lennox Head’s Shane Flannery from participating in the Ballina Lions Fun Run Walk on Sunday. FILE

TWELVE months ago Shane Flannery was preparing for one of his biggest challenges - training for the Hawaiian Ironman triathlon.

Fast forward to today and the 52-year-old from Lennox Head has a whole new challenge recovering from a stroke two months ago.

However, that didn't stop him from participating in the Ballina Lions Fun Run Walk on Sunday.

"I don't know if I'll ever get back to competing in the big stuff but I'd like too," Flannery said.

"Having a stroke was a massive shock; I was pretty fit and healthy and obviously pretty active.

"I'm only doing a bit of running and surfing now, just trying to take it easy.

"When something like this happens there is a high chance it could happen again."

Flannery finished 12th overall in the 50-54 years division in Hawaii last year.

It is known as one of the toughest events in the sport and the pinnacle for many.

Flannery was preparing for the Port Macquarie Ironman before he had the stroke on April 15.

"I'm pretty resilient and I haven't had any big injuries or anything to complain about over the years," he said.

"Once something like this happens you realise that family is everything and that really hit home for me.

"I was probably pushing myself too hard with work and competition.

"Having a stroke made me realise it was definitely time to slow down."

Flannery has already returned to work as a landscaper and hasn't ruled out anything when it comes to triathlon.

"I'm not chasing any accolades but I'd love to eventually get back into some sort of competition," he said.

"At this stage something like Hawaii isn't on my mind but I'd like to do it again one day.

"I'm definitely a never-say-never type person."



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