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Race Report: IM World Championships (Kona, HI)

Wow, where to start? I could go back to the first time I watched IM World Championships on NBC.  I think I was 15 or 16, I hated running - I would never do that. I could go back to when I first started triathlon in 2012, when I thought crossing the finish lines of sprint and olympic distance races was "enough" and thought I would never be able to do an Ironman. I could go back to October of 2015, when I watched every second of the IM World Championship being streamed on my computer.  Having completed IM Lake Placid that summer, I knew I would never be fast enough to qualify, but I still dreamed - maybe someday, when I am 70! I could go back to May, when Women For Tri  asked for applicants to represent them at Ironman World Championships.  The recipient of the spot would have to raise $25,000 for grants and scholarships that are used to promote female participation in the sport.  I thought I had an inspiring story, and I 100% support the effort to help other women f

Race Report: USAT Age Group Olympic Nationals

As soon as it was announced that the 2016 USAT National Championships would be in Omaha, NE - I booked a hotel.  It was sometime in July, and you could not even qualify for the event yet, but I knew that would be my goal!  The very first race that I could qualify at, I did!  I qualified at three different races :-) The original plan was to focus on the olympic distance this year.  I was to work on my speed, especially on the run, and earn that Team USA Tri Kit.  That was my big goal after all.  I took the steps necessary.  I booked my race schedule with plenty of olympic races with a few sprint races to really push the speed.  I started going to speed sessions with Hanson's Running Group and started seeing a trainer to increase my strength.  Then I got the amazing news that I was picked to go to Kona and represent Women for Tri...  my training changed drastically. I knew my  mindset needed to change, too.  I still planned to go to USATAGNC, but this year was to be about recon.

#wcw #whywetri style: Meet Laura

For this week's #wcw #whywetri style, I would like to introduce you to my first "Trifriend": Laura Laura and I in 2014 If you are part of a the triathlon community, you know what a trifriend is.  These are the people that you only know because of triathlon, but you feel like you have know them your whole life.  Laura and I were both sponsored by the same company in 2014 and I have been so thankful for that ever since.  We have done roughly a million races together.  We laugh because even when we are both at a race unplanned, we always seem to find each other. Laura is so encouraging, motivating, and caring.  She personifies one of my favorite things about triathlon - the warm, caring, and encouraging environment.  I am so pleased to share her triathlon story, in her words: 1. When was your first tri (or when will it be), and what made you sign up? Big Fish, June 2012 a good friend had encouraged myself and another good friend to sign up. It took one sprint tr

#wcw #whywetri style: Meet Denise

I am traveling this week, with my #wcw for this week.  There are few people in this world that motivate me consistently they way that my best friend does.  So, for my #wcw #whywetri style this week, I would like to introduce you to my best friend, Denise: It is hard for me to put into words what it is about Denise that is so motivating, but I will try. Neither of us were runners when we met.  Neither of us were runners for the first 15 years of our friendship.  Even before we were runners/athletes, she motivated me to be the best me I could be.  Denise has worked hard for everything she has and has had significant hurdles along the way.  She lost both of her parents, in a very close family, way too young.  It would have been so easy to give in to the sad and just go through the motions of life.  Denise knew her parents want more for her.  She made a promise to her Dad that she would keep fighting cancer even after he couldn't anymore.  So she has... she has continued that fi

Race Report: Caseville 70.3

On the Saturday before race day, I hung out by the course map and sold raffle tickets for a "Coveted Transition Spot" for my fundraising.  I got to talk to lots of athletes about the course and about Women for Tri :-)  It was a gorgeous afternoon and helped me get excited for the race on Sunday I stayed at an Ameriway Inn and Suites in Bad Axe, MI.  They were so nice from the second I checked in to the early morning breakfast they set up for the triathletes that were staying there.  To make it even better, there was a big boy right in the parking lot for my pancake dinner ;-)  I will be staying there again for future Caseville Races!! I got to transition way too early, as usual, and got myself set up.  The water was a little choppier than I had hoped, but not terrible.  It was nice to have extra time to visit with teammates and start to get "race ready."  I was not in my normal "racing" mindset though.  This race was originally planned  as a redemp

#wcw #whywetri style: Meet Kelly

For this week's #wcw I would like to introduce you to my teammate and friend Kelly Riegel-Green. Kelly is a fighter!  Kelly will be an Ironman!  Kelly's journey to Ironman is a lot different from many of ours.  Kelly has Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension and Occipital Neuralgia, and recently had a full hysterectomy to remove a tumor that did have cancer.  Kelly is a paratriathlete that has to overcome so much to even make it to the start line of each race!  During the race, she counts on teammates to guide her through each of the events because sometimes her neurological diseases cause partial blindness during the race.   I am so honored to share her story, in her words: 1. When was your first tri (or when will it be), and what made you sign up? I did my first tri as a relay in aug of 2013.  My first solo on was Aug/Sept 2015.  My first tri as a paratriathlete was July 2015 - caseville (99 days after my 8th brain surgery).   At first it just seemed like i

#MotivationMonday: Setting Goals

As I went through my social media today and saw all of the great #motivationmonday video and quotes, I really thought about what motivates me.  One of the big things that I know works for me is goal setting.  When I very first started getting into running and triathlon, a good friend and colleague suggested that I set 3 goals.  Knowing that I am a bit competitive/type A, I think that she did not want me to be disappointed if I didn't get a PR every race.  So my goal setting tradition began. Every race (well most every race), I set 3 goals.  I called them my Rockstar Goal, Super Happy Goal, and Happy Goal.  I often where the black Fellow Flowers Rockstar flower :-) Notice the Black Flower on my visor :-) The goals are determined the same for every race.  Rockstar Goal is to beat my PR for that distance or that race.  If it is a new distance/race I choose a time that I know would take my 110% effort.  Happy goal is often just to finish the race with a smile, especially for the

Race Report: Sanford Lake Triathlon

Since Sanford Lake Triathlon is a Tri To Finish  event, I got to work registration on Saturday. I love seeing everyone getting geared up for their race.  I met several other Tri To Finish athletes and met a handful of people that were taking on their first multisport event. I really do love this sport!! I stayed Saturday night at the Baymont Inn & Suites in Midland.  It was nicer than what I normally stay in!  Once I checked in, I found a Big Boy for my pancake dinner and then headed back to the hotel to change my tube (realized it was flat that morning.)  I was much happier to change it in the hotel room, than on the side of the course! Swim - 1500m - 28:04-  It turns out I left my goggles in the garage at my house.  I always have extras, but they are extras because I quit using them - for various reasons.  The 30 minutes before race start was spent deciding which goggles I hated the least. The olympic distance swim called for two loops, without exiting the water.  I felt

Tri Greenville Triathlon: Race Report

Tri Greenville Triathlon holds a special place in my heart.  Three years ago this was Melissa's first OWS triathlon.  She placed in her division, which gave her "the bug." These two pictures are from 2014 and 2015. Melissa's race was U-15 division Melissa set her goals based on last year's results (which was a 43:33): Rockstar: 43:00, Super Happy: 45:00, Better Do: Finish :-) Swim - 200m -   2:55 (1:27/100m!!) -  1/4 Age Group, 2/16 Gender   - The beginning of this swim is tough!!  30-40 11-15 year old kids running into the water at the same time.  Once she broke out of the pack she was able to clean her stroke up, but it was very much like a washing machine full of barbie dolls arms to start!  I was so proud to see her come out in the front of the pack (2nd, but top three came out at basically the same time!) Bike 3.75 mi - 14:50 (15.2 mph) -  1/4 Age Group, 4/16 Gender - - Shortly after transition this bike course has a pretty significant hill and ac