Thursday, June 17, 2010

June profile spotlight - Trish Kelly

The June profile spotlights one of the ‘Trishes’...Trish Kelly, who could also be called the Face and Voice of BTT, as she has appeared on water bottles, in radio and print ads...and though now so famous we are grateful she took some time to share a bit more about herself...

1) where are you from? and what do you do?

I am from Medford. Born and raised. I live in the house I grew up in. My parents bought the house when I was in the womb. I kicked my parents out, they are now living in a trailer somewhere warm... OK,not really. They retired to Florida (and live in a house).

2) when did you join BTT? and how long doing tris?

I joined BTT in 2007. I was introduced to BTT by Janice Beiderman, whom I worked with at the time. She had been pointed out to me as "the other pharmacist who rides her bike to work". Janice and I hit it off, eventually bike talk turned to triathlon talk. I had always been interested in triathlons, but didn't know much about them.

Through Janet's suggestion, I got onto BTT Public and then went to the Sister-Sister SGR at Regina's. At that SGR, I specifically remember Laurie D and Derek Keller being so warm and welcoming, starting off the run with Regina and hitting my LT within 10 minutes, and meeting Mary Beth, who was also a "BTT Public" person and at her first SGR as well.

3) what attracted you to triathlon?

I am a goal-oriented person and like to try things are slightly outside my comfort zone. I had run a couple of marathons (1998 and 2000) and I wanted a new challenge. Triathlons seems like the next logical goal.

4) what was your first race? what is the most memorable thing about

your first race?

My first race was Mooseman International 2007. There were a number of notable experiences there... (1) I freaked out on the swim. I started hyperventilating and couldn't keep my face in the water. I couldn't hold my breath long enough to get the breast stroke going. After consulting with the kayaker, the side stroke was determined to my most efficient stroke. So I finally settled in and side-stroked it the whole way. (2) At T1 I remember changing into my bike shoes and realized that I peeing. I was a little embarrassed, I hadn't planned it... it just sort of happened. (3) Getting going on the bike was a challenge. My cleats were full of mud and I could clip in. I stopped a few times. This was the first time using the Speed Play system (mistake #1), so I didn't know about the mud thing and how to trouble shoot. I got off the bike 4 times to try to get the mud out. I finally got help at the 2-mile runners aid station. The volunteer gave my cleats an enema and flushed all the goop away.... I was off and riding. The final blunder was (4) a case of indecent exposure. It was such a humid that day, so unzipped my bike shirt a bit to get a little air. I didn't realize that I had unzipped it so much that I was essentially running in must my sports bra. I sort of cringed when I saw the finisher picture.

My second race was sort of notable as well, as I had a DFL finish (Dead - F - Last). Kennebunk Maine International. It was a cold ocean swim. I was last out of the water by 10 minutes. The bike was completely alone. I had the support vehicle on my tail the whole way. I actually stopped to tell him to back off a bit. I approached dismount and was told I missed the cut-off by 3 minutes or 30 seconds... I forget. OMG. My jaw dropped and I pleaded with the guy to let me go. I said the run is my strongest sport. When he asked my pace, I started saying "9 minute pace", but decided to say "8, 8:45".... He let me go on. I didn't get 8:45 pace, but was under 9. It is always a fear to be last, and I never thought I would ever be last. Turned out not to be so bad. I did get a great finisher photo with the "last runner" motorcycle behind me.

5) did you swim/bike/run or play any other sports in high school?

In high school I play soccer for 1 year and was a cheerleader for 1 year. The JR High gym teacher told me to join the track team once I got to High School, but I got a paper route instead. I do regret never following up on the track team suggestion.

6) what do you love most about triathlon and what if anything is

the most frustrating or challenging part?

I love the people and fun times. For me it's mostly social but it's also a good way to challenge myself. It always feels good when you know you put out your best effort. The most frustrating part is the swim. The best comment about my swimming was "you seem to be working hard, but you're just not going anywhere".

7) do you have any role models or someone that inspires you? why?

I don't have any specific role models, but I am inspired by the "can do" attitude that many people in triathlon have. At this stage of our lives, most of us have realized certain limitations, have demanding lives, or have had unexpected sets backs (personal, physical, mental). It doesn't matter your situation, everyone has stuff that they are dealing with. I am inspired by the people who find a way to overcome and push through. Rather than giving up and using excuses, they find a way to make it work and show up with a positive attitude and a smile on their face.

8) besides swimming, biking and running, what do you do for fun?

any hobbies or interests outside of triathlon we should know about?

I like starting home improvement projects. I think I'm pretty handy and I have a decent lineup of power tools. I also love going on bike tours. I'm heading out to Wisconsin this summer. It's like a party on wheels for 7 days.

9) Any funny/embarrassing/awesome race moments you have to share?

Funny race moment was during the Winter Tri in 2009. Run, Bike, Ski. I didn't completely transition, as I left my helmet on (apparently I could have be DQ'd for that). I proceeded onto the ski portion of the race with my bike helmet. Since I didn't know I still had my helmet on, I did all the usual post-race things WITH MY HELMET ON!!! Cleaned up transition, packed my car, got some hot chocolate, picked through the give-a-ways, chatted with people.... then I went to the bathroom. Like most women, I decided to admire myself in the mirror.... OMG, I could stop laughing that I had been walking around with my helmet. Thanks BTT for giving me the heads up :-)

10) anything else we should know about you or you'd like to tell


I love BTT. It's filled with great people who motivate, support,

and inspire each other.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Pat Dwyer Pineland Farms 25k Race Report

So, it’s been a tough workout week. I’ve had some hard running workouts….no easy runs. Saturday was a 4 hour ride w/a 75 minute and 30 minute tempo piece built in….followed by a 20 minute run w/the first 15 minutes building to zone 4 (ie. Mid 5 minute pace). I actually felt pretty good afterwards, which was a good thing…because I was running the Pineland Farms 25K trail race up in Maine the next day. It’s a great race on very nice trails. I did this race two years ago and won….taking the lead around 3 miles and never looking back. I knew this year was going to be tougher for a few of reasons. One, Saturday’s workout was pretty damn hard. Two, I did not sleep well. And, three, there looked to be some decent runners in the field.

We drove the 2+ hours up to Maine in the morning. Sitting in a car for 2+ hours before running 15.5 miles and after a 4.5 hour workout day is not ideal. Anyway, it was an uneventful trip and I did a short warmup and started to get myself ready to race. I could tell that the previous days workout had sapped my legs quite a bit. I decided before the race to just go out and feel things out. I definitely wanted to be in the mix, but I really didn’t want to try to do what I did two years ago and be out front too early (famous last words).

Gun went off and one runner goes right off the front. The first mile is really to feel things out and see who the competition is. There was definitely a decent size pack throughout the first mile. The guy in front flies down the hills and pushes the pace. I was just doing my best not to let him get too far out front. We get to the first mile and I’m sitting right behind this guy who states, surprisingly (almost startlingly)…. “guys, that first mile was 5:25!!!”. No shit Sherlock! Maybe you shouldn’t push the pace if you have no intention of holding it!!! It is, after all, a 15.5 mile race. However, I wasn’t about to let this idiot dictate the race by slowing down because the pace was too fast for him. My reaction? I blew right by him and kept going. Hey, if you’re going to go out like a jackass, you had better be prepared to keep up the pace.

For what it’s worth, I never saw him again! But, there were a few other guys (3 to be exact) who were running with me. I led for the next mile or so…somewhat reluctantly. For a moment, I had visions of breaking away again….like 2 years ago. But, the guys with me weren’t slow. We ran as a group through the 5k at a blistering 17:20 (some of the later miles may not have been exact, but I’m pretty sure this one was…..we were moving). That 17:20 was probably worth a sub 17 on the roads.

While I was feeling pretty good and strong at the outset….the fatigue started to settle in my legs around this point. I definitely paid for the early hard pace and I lost the 3 man pack. I tried to keep them within site…but I just couldn’t get my legs moving fast enough. So, I figured I’d just try to keep the pace up and hope that they come back to me. I ran solo until just after the 10k mark which I hit at 38:45. Then, finally, one of the three guys ahead of me came back into sight….and I started to reel him in. The thing is….my HR wasn’t actually that high. It was hovering in the low 160s….but the legs just wouldn’t respond.

Once I caught him, I tried to get him to run with me (it can be lonely out there!). We ran for about a mile before he was spit out the back. I hit the 15k mark around 57 minutes and change. I could see that there was a guy behind me moving up on me….so I really tried to start pushing. The thing about this course is that it is all up and a grass, dirt and rock roller coaster. There's little time to ever get into a running rhythm. During the last 5 miles of the course I started feeling better….I got my legs back a little. So, I started running a bit harder…and got the HR up to the low 170s.

The last couple miles of this race feel like they go on forever. With about a little over a half mile to go we enter an open field, which we run around before finishing up. As I entered the field, I glanced behind me….and sure enough…..I had someone on my tail about 100 meters back. I dug a bit deeper… way I was losing 3 place at this point. And I didn’t. I held him off and finished up at 1:39:50. It was 2:30 faster than my 2008 finish. And, in glancing at the times from last year, it looks like everyone was 2-3 minutes slower this year across the board (they modified the course this year….and I suspect it’s a tad bit longer). The good thing is that I actually felt pretty good at the end….good form. Not to mention, this was my longest run of the year….longest since Hawaii last October. So, I’m happy with it. I’d really like to see what I can do on that course w/fresh legs. Maybe next year!

On the way home, we stopped by the Clam Shack in Kennebunkport for lobster rolls and fried clams! Probably not the best recovery food….but damn good!


Janice Biederman reports on Florida 70.3

FLA 70.3

The day did not start off well. We (friend Tracey & myself) had driven to the race site on Fri and Sat so had the route down pat, or so we thought. Come race morning, they had roads blocked off for the race. We had to drive all over creation to get into the parking lot where what beheld our eyes but a 2+ block long waiting line for the shuttle buses to the transition site!! We were getting seriously nervous. We eventually got the transition area 36 minutes before my swim wave went off. Quickly (duh) set up transition, pumped the front tire, tried to pump the back tire only to have the stem of the brand-new-I-bought-it-yesterday-and-never-even-rode-on-it tube break in half, giving me a flat. Determined to stay calm (yeah, right), I pulled out my tire tools and could not get the tire off the rim. Fortunately, the tech folks/volunteers were walking around with a pump and I hailed them down and they changed the tire for me (while the announcer was urging everyone to get down to the water). By the time I grabbed my swim cap, goggles and inhaler (I didn't have enough time to put on my speedsuit), the national anthem was almost done. I desperately needed a bathroom trip and, even though there were tons of real bathrooms plus porta-potties, every one I saw had a mile-long line. Pride be damned, I headed to the bushes where I had a lovely conversation with a gentleman. I finally made it to the water with a whopping 2 minutes to spare.

The Swim
I seeded myself to the far right, front row and had a clean start with minimal body contact. For once I swam pretty darn straight (which cannot be said for 90% of my fellow swimmers) but could not get a draft for more than 5-6 strokes because the water was so murky (no funny taste-just could see more than 6 inches). The swim felt long but maybe that's because I'm so accustomed to wetsuit swims. After what seemed forever, I reached land.

I kept moving in my slow trot but got passed by tons of people. Got to the bike, put on shoes, helmet, gloves (when I sweat I lose my grip on the shifters). Tried to put on spray-on sunscreen but the sprayer wouldn't work-hello sunburn.

The Bike
The bike is usually my best event and it started off well. I felt good but by the time the bike ended, I had heard "on your left" approximately 1,976 times. I did manage to pass 8 poor souls (there are actually people slower than me!!). I had a good pace going up to about 40 miles, then my lower back started tightening up and my speed dropped, plus the wind kicked in. I was ready to get the bike done.

Another so-so transition. Tried the sunscreen again and had the same result. Oh well, melanoma is all about sun exposure before age 18, right? Stopped at the very redolent porta-pottie when exiting transition for my first pee of the day-despite drinking 86 ounces of fluid on the bike.

The Run
The run defines this race. What it lacks in hills-there is nary a speed bump on the course-it makes up with heat, humidity, and a really bad course. The initial part (maybe 200 yards), on a paved bike path, wasn't bad and I was very pleasantly surprised to discover that my legs felt pretty good (not to be confused with good enough to run fast). Managed my patented shuffle for about 8 minutes, when I hit the unshaded grass/dirt/weeds part of the course around mile 1. Things immediately got tough since the sun was blaring down by now (I heard undocumented reports that it was 110˚+ in this 1-1/2 mile section). I resorted to the shuffle some, walk some and lots of self-talk (some in my head, some out loud) to ward off the negative mind set. Part of what kept me fairly positive was seeing some very fit looking guys walking. Side note: I feel that I personally inspired many men to run because whenever I passed a walking man they would look at the age on my calf and immediately start running. You’re welcome guys. Saw 2 guys keel over while running and helped fetch ice for one of them (medics & other racers were pouring ice on him to get his temp down-he was unconscious). I also entertained myself by watching an alligator swim in the fetid water in the canal beside the aforementioned grass/dirt/weed strip. I did manage a slow but determined run through the spectator part at the end of the loop. Loop 2 was tough mentally but I just kept myself going. Loop 3 was actually the best loop, probably because I new I would never, ever have to see that grass/dirt strip again. I also invented a mind game. I counted off 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8, 2-2-3-4-5-6-7-8, etc. timed with my foot steps. The game was that I could walk as many steps as I ran so if I wanted a longer walk, I had to do a longer run. That and ice chips at every water stop, 2 cups down the back-2 cups down the front (I think I went up 2 bra sizes at each water stop) got me through the grass section.

The Aftermath
Grabbed a slice of pizza, gathered up my stuff, and waited for Tracey who had finished well before me and had taken her stuff to the car. Went to the awards ceremony to collect my nifty award (attrition is a wonderful thing-there were only 2 women in my age group so I got 2nd, also known as last. I was a very distant 2nd, I might add). Went back to the hotel, showered and assesses the damage: 3 toenails in imminent danger of dropping off, a sore back, and painfully fluorescent pink sunburned shoulders.

I did learn some valuable things from this race: vanilla PowerGel tastes awful; raspberry PowerGel tastes great; check the sunscreen before the race; allow an extra hour to get to a race; positive self-talk can really help.