Meet our 5th tri-friend, Local Pro -->
Tell us a little about yourself: where are you from, what you do?
When did you realize you wanted to make the jump from Amateur to elite status?
Pretty early in college I was told I had potential, having a strong swimming background and decent running, which at least got me thinking but I had already burnt out of one sport (swimming) and was in no hurry to have that sort of heartbreak again. It was probably a mixture of two events that clicked for me. The first was freshman year over the Purdue Triathlon 2011 spring break trip to Clermont, FL. There I found that I loved training and racing no matter how tough it got or the condition. I got a taste of what it would be like to train, eat, sleep every day and I couldn't get enough of it. Later that year I started training with Well-Fit in Chicago and made some pretty stressful travel arrangements to make workouts. Even though they added 1-2 hrs to my already 2.5 hrs of commuting to my internship in Indiana, they were good for me as an athlete and I enjoyed the work. The fact that I was able to stay motivated through that summer even though I lost countless nights of sleep gave me faith that I could make it.
I want to say the competition but really it has been the travel and volume of racing. Because of the number of series I am racing (Rev 3, ITU, 5150, and collegiate races) I have been traveling at least twice a month. The good thing is although I used to struggle with travel I have been enjoying it a lot this year.
The next adjustment that rivals the travel is actually the financial barrier. Last year I was working as an engineering intern, making fairly good money for a 20 year old kid, and now I am running on the faith that I'll "make it" before the savings account goes dry. Its pretty difficult because until you get results, you can't expect companies to shell out for you, but to get those results you need to spend money on travel, therapy, etc.
What are your goals in your first elite year?
I gave myself some pretty broad goals this year since I was not sure what would happen. One of my main goals is simply to start building a good reputation and prove that I am here to stay. I'm hoping to see a couple podiums by the end of the year and get in the money as well. A concrete goal I am going after would be Hy-Vee qualification through the 5150 races, which takes a top 30 ranking in that series.
What is your A-Race this year?
Right now that depends on how things pan out. ITU-Dallas certainly is an A race for me, since there is a chance to pick up one of two US u23 slot to the ITU World Series Finale in London. After that it will depend on if I qualify for Hy-Vee or not. My last race of the season (Rev 3-Florida) will definitely be an A race.
When you are traveling for a race and are required to hop in a car or plan right after a race; what is your go-to recovery process?
This happens a lot to myself and most other pros actually. After a race I always make sure there is time to do some sort of cool-down, be it a 5min shuffle or 15min spin. Also, I force myself to eat anything and everything I can handle to help give my body fuel and supplement that with PowerBar Protein Plus bars as I am traveling. I stretch really well either at the race site or hotel or even the airport if I had to go directly there. I get some time rolling my legs with this cool new device call the R8 (from Roll Recovery) and a lacrosse ball that I keep in my carry on bag. Before I go anywhere I put on Zensah Compression Socks or Ultra Compression Sleeves to help me start recovering fast.