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What is an Iron Man PDF Print E-mail

For those that do not know what an Iron Man is, it is  a Triathlon

In triathlon, there are basically four distances:

1.) Olympic Distance
Swim .9 miles
Bike 25 miles
Run 6.2 miles

Cory Foulk Ironman and Ultraman, 12/21/05, Dr. Vijay Bose PDF Print E-mail

coryCory Foulk, Bose Hippy, Runs Marathon 3 months post op, then competes in multiple Ironman & Ultraman Triathlons
Hip Resurfacing with Dr. Bose, December 21, 2005

"100% I honestly feel stronger, faster and am fitter than I have been in over ten years."  Cory Foulk, April 5, 2009

Read Cory's Articles on Running 

Disclaimer: Please keep in mind that every patient is diffierent, this is an extremely in shape ahtlete that has done this pracitcially his whole life so I do NOT recommend that anyone do any of these things themselves, remember to always listen to your surgeons advice first and then listen to your body and also keep in mind that the inventor of the BHR device, Derek Mcminn does not recommend running or doing any heavy impact until at least one year post op.



In 2005 I was able to have my right hip resurfaced with a BHR from Smith and Nephew. Looking back on the past 11 years, I can say it has been quite a ride – literally!

I suffered a grievous injury to my right hip in a cycling accident in 1993. I had 5 stainless steel pins inserted into the femoral head to hold things in place and after an arduous recovery went about my life. That life included working full-time, fathering 3 children, studying for a doctorate, and competing at the world level in triathlons, ultra runs, bicycle races and blue water swims.

A few years later the joint began to die, AVN they said. So a team removed the pins in an effort to restore circulation to that joint. It was quite a messy process, but they succeeded. Again, I had a lengthy recovery period. However, I can say today that I never did fully recover, as the joint was finished. Pins or no pins, the joint was dying and that was the end of it. I was in my mid-thirties, and had been doing marathons for 20 years, and doing Ironman races for about 10 or 11 years at the time with a best in class finish of 2nd at the Ironman World Championships. I had set a U.S. triple marathon record, and had the ability to stage race very competitively at run distances up to 400K [250 miles] prior to the hip issues.

It became progressively harder to go fast; more and more pain was accompanied by less and less range of motion. As the years passed, I went from bone spurs and foreign bodies to bone on bone, and then the bone began to wear. Ultimately I had lost 25mm of leg length by the time I was able to get a BHR. I had it done in India because at the time it still had not been approved in the U.S. and I could not wait any longer. I was literally running out of leg bone to wear!

I had a good go of the BHR surgery, trained specifically for it before hand and began an immediate and serious PT protocol after. I was helped in developing this by folks from UC Davis Medical School, Doctor’s at Nike West in Eugene, Oregon, a very talented [blind] veterinarian massage therapist, my personal MD Claudia Chrisman, Ironman MD extraordinaire Frank Ferret, Pilates genius Dietrich Lawrence of Cherry Creek, Colorado. I had also had the benefit of having had to recover from two prior hip surgeries using more normal PT protocols, and knew better what was worthwhile and what was not.

Steve Miller from Smith and Nephew and the scientists on their Memphis campus helped in many ways as well as my recovery extended and I reached out to do world events. Doctor Vijay Bose was instrumental in not only the surgery, but also his “follow your body” advice, in place of stricter recovery limits. Derek McMinn gave voice to many dissenting opinions, some well taken, and I believe we both learned a lot more about the BHR’s capabilities along the way. Pat Campbell, PhD, at the UCLA Joint Replacement Institute studied my blood ion content before during and after events in years following, and was able to add to the science of MoM bearings in vivo.

I want to thank all of these people, their staffs and the many hundreds of others who have contributed to a very successful BHR recovery process. This would include race directors who allowed me to compete while the science was still being made, my support crews who put up with me, and all of the athletes with BHR’s whose shoulders I stood on. The very first on that list is Dr. Dru Dixon, ultra-athlete legend and BHR pioneer [Dru has bilateral BHr’s from long before they were introduced into the U.S. I want to say 2003ish]. Steven Arnett, former Pro Volleyball player and good friend, who had a BHR done as part of an experimental group at UCLA, also in 2003.

So – where to begin...

Today I am 57 years old; I am 6’ 0 ½” tall, 164 pounds. I have finished 56 Ironman triathlons, I have DNF’d one Ironman and been DQ’d from one. 16 of those Ironman finishes are on a BHR hip. The best showing with the BHR hip was 2nd overall at Ironman Revisited, which is the original event on the original course. That was 2 years post-op.

Ironman is a one day, 140 mile triathlon as follows:

2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike, 26.2 mile run.

I have competed in 31 Ultraman Triathlons, 18 of those the World Championships. I have placed as high as 3rd overall on a BHR hip in the Canadian Ultraman Championships, I have placed as high as 11th over-all at the Ultraman World’s, that was 11 months post-op. I placed second in my division at Ultraman World’s in 2011, which was 6 years post-op. 18 of these competitions were with a BHR.

Ultraman is a 3 day, 320 mile triathlon staged as follows:

Stage One / Day One: Swim 6.2 miles open water; Bike 90 miles with at least 8000 feet of elevation gain.

Stage Two / Day Two: Bike 170 miles, With at least 8000 feet of elevation gain.

Stage Three / Day Three: Run 52.4 miles [double marathon].

Additionally, I have raced in the Texas 500, a 500 mile straight through bike race in Texas, the Race Around Ireland, a 1460 mile four day bicycle race around the island of Ireland, 7 blue water swims longer than 6.2 miles, and done significant training mileage [as you might expect] including riding a simulated Tour De France every July [about 2200 miles in 21 days] in spirit with Gary Kobat, trainer of the stars and BHR hippy.

Because I got a BHR, my life was returned to me in its entirety. I have been able to race bicycles in the Alps, dine on the Riviera, swim at the Cape of Good Hope, take my kids on safari or surfing or both, and do everything in between. Work is just – work. It once was something I had to mentally prepare for – sitting hurt so badly. Sitting all day? OMG. The worst. Today work is just work, friends and cohorts and a little time off your feet.

I don’t park in the very front isle at the grocery store today. I used to circle the parking lot looking, waiting, for that spot. It hurt so badly to walk from the truck into the store. Today I eat what I want. I used to decide it wasn’t worth it to walk all the way back to the bakery section for a loaf of bread. Hurt too much. I’d do without.

Today I take the elevator because I want to. Not because I have to. I don’t have trouble with weight gain, even though I can eat what I want now. Because I am so much more active without even realizing it.

I tie my shoes today. Tying shoes used to be a real drill. I’d get my foot propped against the wall and then sort of HEAVE toward it and try to grab the lace ends. Heh. By the time the right side was tied I needed to change my shirt, I was soaked with sweat. Now, I just cross my leg onto my thigh and tie it like everyone else does. Life is grand!

It is funny our expectations. I remember not being able to touch my nose to my knee. So I called Vijay, and said hey, what gives? I thought I would get all the range back? He said okay, can you touch your nose to the other knee? ?? So I tried and – no! I couldn’t. He had restored me to exactly where I was, no more, no less : )

I can run a 440 in under a minute. That took about 4-5 years to get back post-op. That is not just because of the op, but because I was so detrained from a decade of marginal motion pre-op. But it has all come back. I can run a sub-5 minute mile pace today for several miles, and am working on a 5K WR attempt in this division. I can do it I know. The WR is 15:29, and I have run 15:34 with this BHR. So it is possible – only 6 seconds!

Over the years so many people have written to me. Many are surprised when I suggest they get a THR instead of a BHR. It is simple to me. The time under anesthesia is significantly different for the two procedures. If you are not truly going to use a BHR to its full potential, then why risk dementia or other complications from the time spent under? Most MoM total hips are fabulous for anything anyone wants to do. You cannot do Ironman events year after year on one. But most people don’t do Ironman events year after year.

I do recommend that, no matter what, you have surgery now, do not wait. The sooner you have it, the sooner you will realize how compromised your life had become. Also, the younger we are, the better the result. A year or two at my age is a big difference in likely outcomes and time to recover.

I want to hear from you, what your questions are, what your desires are. What would the hippies like to know about me, about what I did to recover, to pre-train, today what do I do?

Send questions via the hippie email, and I will do a monthly or weekly column.

Cory Foulk

Update December 29, 2014
Cory makes top ten story of 2014 in MundoTri Magazine, the World's largest triathlon magazine.

Read this article in MundoTri

April 2011 Read this inspiring article in Slowtwitch

Update April 30, 2012

Cory Foulk: "This is ultraman world's 2011, the last of november 1st of december. i placed second in the world in my division, and had what had to be one of the best races i have ever had in my life. very difficult conditions, very impressive effort to reel in dan squiller, who is now the division world champion. failed in that but i tell you he had a great race going, and i was honored to have been out there trying to reel him in. i will see if i can find it somewhere.

i have started 6 ultraman worlds, 1 reverse ultraman [same distances opposite order - run/bike/swim, in june of 2011], 2 ultraman canadian championships on this BHR. i dropped from the world's in 2009 with a broken knee at mile 170 of the bike. i placed third overall in the canadian championships in 2007 on a BHR.

i have competed in 13 ironman distance events, and one quinta-iron [5 ironman triathlons on five consecutive days], including 5 ironman world championships, on this BHR. many other cycling races up to 500 miles, foot races on and off-road up to and over 100 miles in length on this BHR. several blue water marathon swims.

I have now been invited to compete in more Ultraman World Championships than any man or woman in history. 


Steve Cohan Ironman, Resurfacing 1/15/03, Dr. Koen De Smet PDF Print E-mail
steveSteve Cohan, Completes his First Ironman Ever Post Surgery!

"Our growing club should have open doors, promoting an active lifestyle is the only price for admission."

Steve Cohan had surgery with Dr. Koen De Smet in Belgium on January 15, 2003. On October 5, 2007, Steve emailed me and asked me to get him in touch with fellow patient and triathlete (name deleted) because his wife had just decided to register them both for the Ironman 2008 in Wisconsin.
Rick Rubio Ironman, 7/23/08, Dr. Mori PDF Print E-mail
rubioHi my name is Rick Rubio. July 23rd, 2008 was my one year anniversary of having a hip resurfacing and I ran my second Marathon since the surgery.

I am 55 and have always been active and involved in sports. In the early 80’s I started running marathons, and then in the late 80’s I started doing triathlons. I also played tournament racquetball for many years, played some tennis and for quite a few years played softball. Needless to say participating in sports has been an important part of my life.
Jeffrey A. Jensen - 3/12/08 - Dr. Ure PDF Print E-mail
jensenI am a 49 year old adult male that was suffering from Osteoarthritis in my left hip. I had subluxed my hip in an accident in 1995 and had experienced sporadic hip pain since then. I always lead an active lifestyle but did not compete athletically until later in life.
Thomas B. Devaney Ironman, 3/28/07, Dr. Bose PDF Print E-mail
devaneyMy BHR in Chennai, India with Dr. Bose and his team was on March 28, 2007. Back in Canada mid-April.

Timeline of post-surgery events

  • Completed a 'sprint' distance triathlon in Calgary, Alberta in August 2007
  • Commenced training for Ironman Canada in November 2007
  • Sprint distance triathlon - June 2008
  • Half Ironman Triathlon - July 2008
  • My 60th birthday - July 12 (Part-tay!!!)
  • Seattle to Portland 2 Day (about 320km) bike ride - July 12 and 13
  • Ironman Canada Triathlon August 2008 (3.8km swim, 180km bike, 42.6km run). Took an hour off my previous personal best time in three prior Ironmans (although there were a few other issues in these races).