The first ever Ironman race to take place in Dublin is being held today. The 2,500 athletes took off at 7am this morning, putting the rest of us and our much-loved Sunday lie-ins to shame.

The first stage was a 1.9km swim at Scotsman’s Bay in Dun Laoghaire. Then they tackle 90 km cycle through the city centre and looping back to Phoenix Park. The race then concludes with a 21km half marathon.

We bet you thought they might have been stopping for tea with Michael D after that cycle, right? No, these are serious athletes.

Ironman 70.3 is a mid-distance triathlon but Dublin is expected to host a full-distance Ironman in 2016.

That would be a 3.8km swim, a 180km cycle, and a 42.2km run. So there’s plenty of time for us to get our best cycling shorts out for next year’s training then.

Athletes from over 40 countries are expected to take part today alongside some 1,500 Irish athletes that include professionals Robbie Wade and Kevin Thornton. Just one famous face spotted among the crowd was Bressie, looking very, errr, stylish in his wetsuit…

These athletes include some 500 female athletes, in the last number of years that has been a huge increase in the number of female athletes competing in such events.

The spokesman for Triathlon Ireland Scott Graham has said: “In 2005 we had 800 members, this year we are expecting about 10,250 members. So over the last 10 years it’s been double-digit growth in terms of membership year-on-year.”

Included in the field of competitors this morning is German athlete Sonja Tajsich who has been described as the “fastest triathlete on land.”

Phew! We’ll be thinking of them all while we tackle our Sunday brunch favourites his morning. Plenty of locals along the route are making sure to provide some support for competitors along the way. The Irish Mammy type has never been appreciated, we can only imagine:

After just 4 hours on the course the winner was announced earlier today.

Congratulations Denis, we'll be raising a cup of coffee to you as we prepared for our Sunday midday nap.