Where did you grow up?
I grew up in New Haven, Indiana, a small town in northeast Indiana.
How did you get involved with triathlon?
I grew up playing soccer and swimming competitively until middle school when back surgery from a cracked vertebra forced me to take a break. I started running after the operation to get back in shape and found that I really liked it and had a knack for it, so I never stopped. I ran in high school, college and professionally after college. After some lingering injuries in 2014 and 2015, I decided to take a step back from the sport and reset. Being an athlete was all I knew and I wanted something to do while I got my head on straight; with triathlon being something I had always wanted to try, I borrowed a bike from a friend and after a 15-year hiatus I got back into the pool. I raced my first triathlon in January of 2016 and loved it! Things built from there and now I’m racing in MLT! It has been a great and unpredictable journey.
What is your goal with the sport?
I bring to triathlon the same goal I had in running; to see how fast I can be. It is really an internal motivation, one of simply wanting to get faster and faster along the way. When I started running, I didn't know enough to have big goals; all I wanted was to run quicker. There was a four-mile loop outside my house that I ran every day. When I ran it, I would look at my watch afterwards and see if I had gotten any faster that day. I wasn't on a team or running for school; I was just racing the clock and myself day after day. In a lot of ways, I am still that girl. I want to see how fast I can be, but now I also want to see where I stack up against the best.
What is your strongest aspect of triathlon and why?
Of the three disciplines, running would be my strength. It was my passion and job for nearly half of my life, and I have a lot of knowledge and experience with it; but I think more than my ability to run, my strongest aspect of triathlon is the race experience I have competing at a high-level. I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to race internationally with and against the top female runners in the world and I know that experience will serve me well in triathlon.
What is your least strong aspect of triathlon and why?
My swim is probably my least strong aspect; I was quite rusty and it still needs a good bit of work! I did, however, swim competitively until I was 15 and without those swimming fundamentals and being dragged to the pool alongside my siblings none of this would be possible right now.
In what sports did you participate before triathlon?
I swam and played soccer growing up through freshman year of high school and then started running as a sophomore in high school. I ran through college and went on to run professionally after college for ZAP Fitness-Reebok. I ran the 5k, 10k, up to the marathon.
What are your hobbies?
My husband and I have a Great Dane puppy, Frankie. She has rapidly become my main hobby as training her is no easy task! When I am not chasing her around, I love to read. We live in an area with limited cell and internet service so reading is a good way to pass the time and relax.
Where do you live and where do you enjoy training the most?
My husband, Frankie and I live on a horse farm just outside of Tryon, North Carolina, a beautiful small town on the North Carolina/South Carolina border tucked in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. It is a lovely place to train with lots of long hills to ride and horse trails to run. After college, I trained professionally as a runner at ZAP Fitness in Blowing Rock, North Carolina. Moses Cone Memorial Park in Blowing Rock remains one of my all-time favorite places to run as it has over 20 miles of gravel carriage trails and is gorgeous.
Where have your race travels taken you?
Being new to triathlon, Cuba is as far as this sport has taken me over the past year. As a runner, I have been all over the US racing in some spectacular events that include the NYC marathon and Boston marathon. Internationally, my involvement with some of the world teams allowed me to race in places like Daegu, South Korea (probably my favorite place to have raced), Punta Cambria, Spain, Paris and Tobago.
For how long can you see yourself racing?
I plan to keep racing for as long as the desire to get faster is in me.
If you could offer one piece of advice to someone looking to enter the sport, what would it be?
Get a good coach to help you navigate the confusing world that is triathlon.
What would you like to do after you are finished racing triathlon?
My undergrad degree is in psychology, and I’d like to go back to school for a Masters in counseling. I personally have seen the benefit of therapy for myself and others and believe wholeheartedly in the power of counseling to change lives. I want to be part of that change.
Which team do you think will bring home the MLT Cup this year??
The INDY CATS, of course!!!! Go, Cats!! RAWRRR!!!