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Tufts' Ironman

Tufts' IronmanTufts graduate Brian Mozinski is taking physical fitness to the next level – competing against the world’s toughest athletes in his first triathlon. Fukue Island, Japan.

Medford/Somerville, Mass. [05.21.04] On Sunday, when hundreds of Tufts seniors will be celebrating their commencement, a recent graduate will be commencing something else: his first triathlon. A grueling competition requiring physical fitness and mental stamina, the Ironman Japan will be a major test of Brian Mozinski's strength and endurance. But the Tufts graduate says he can't think of a better way to celebrate his 30th birthday.

"I always wanted to do an Ironman competition and visit Japan," Tufts graduate Brian Mozinski told the Patriot Ledger. "There was no better time to do it than on my 30th birthday."

Mozinski, who was a 50-meter swimmer while at Tufts, has been training hard for the race - which consists of a 2.4-mile swim, a 112-mile bike ride, and a marathon-length 26.2-mile run.

"He sacrifices many things to put in the hours in the pool, on the bike, and running. He may be modest, but he regularly woke up at 4 a.m. in the dead of winter to ride his bike indoors for three to four hours before work," Savas Gunduz, a co-worker of Mozinski's, told the Ledger. "That's dedication."

The Tufts graduate, a corporate developer, spends most of his free hours running, swimming and biking in preparation. A typical lunch hour includes running miles to a local pool, swimming a few laps, and running back.

"I think Brian's natural strength is in the water," Gunduz told the Ledger. "In the pool or pond, he is at home."

On weekends, Mozinski cycles from his home North Quincy to Provincetown or Hyannis - breaking for a run - then heads back.

"Many nights after work normal people would like nothing more than to go home and eat something and watch TV," said Gunduz. "Brian would sneak in extra sessions, often yoga, to make sure that he has the full-body balance and full-mind balance that this event requires."

Recently married, the Tufts graduate says his wife has been very supportive of his Ironman ambitions, which have consumed much of his time over the past eight months.

"She has been my real coach," Mozinski told the Ledger. "She has been very patient, especially with all the time taken away from training."

Once the race begins, Mozinski will be moving constantly for about ten hours. Throughout his race preparations, he has had to drastically alter his diet to make up for all the burned calories. A typical meal includes pasta, black and refried beans, yogurt and a banana.

"I eat on average 4,500 calories a day, but [prior to] race day it will be around 12,000," Mozinski - who has lost more than 40 pounds during his training - told the Ledger.

More than 1,200 people from around the globe - including some of the top international tri-athletes - will compete in the Ironman Japan, which takes place on Fukue Island off the coast of Nagasaki, Japan.

Mozinski told the Ledger he feels ready for the challenge. "I'm really excited to race."

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