If you’re going to push yourself all the way through a triathlon, you might as well suffer in a gorgeous spot—or so seems the philosophy of Ironman 70.3, the fast-growing half-Ironman race series. This year, there are nearly 60 far-flung and enticing locales to choose from, like Sri Lanka, Chile, and the Philippines.
Take Mont Tremblant, one of the newest hosts of this challenging series. Racers swim 1.2 miles in the lovely, forest-swaddled Lake Tremblant, bike 56 miles through peaks and boreal forests on a newly paved (read: reduced friction) stretch of road, and run 13.1 miles through a village of chalets that looks like it could have been airlifted right out of the French Alps. And leave it to the French Canadians, renowned for their lively—one might even say rowdy—nightlife and rich regional specialties like poutine (French fries, cheese curds, and gravy), to offer a killer postrace recovery program. (Hint: It involves an abundance of cheese, craft brews, and leisurely jaunts to the stunning nearby Mont-Tremblant National Park.)