Sunday, June 7, 2015

Triathlon coaches are people too

Last month while I was in the packet pickup line for the Honolulu Triathlon the man standing behind me started up a really interesting conversation.  We talked about how this was his second triathlon, how he & his wife had lost over 100lbs (wow!) & all about his many upcoming races.  It was quite a schedule, with just about every half marathon & triathlon from now until the Honolulu Marathon in December - which is on his calendar too!
My husband & I after the Hon Tri

As we talked about these races he expressed his nerves about the swim mostly & we discussed strategy, etc.  I mentioned I'm a triathlon coach and that if he needed some formal guidance I could help.  

I wasn't surprised when he asked me why I was "just" doing the sprint triathlon at this race instead of the Olympic.  These kinds of questions come up often when people find out I'm a coach.  I don't take offense because I believe it's a matter of education.

I think most folks assume all coaches are professional Ironman triathletes too.  While some are Ironman triathletes, others aren't.  We're all different people!  

Some coaches are Ironman triathletes, some are not.  

Some run marathons, others don't.  Just like all of the other endurance athletes out there training for all kinds of different races, we're out there too training for our own races.  

Some of us are really fast, others are slow.

Some love the shorter distances, others prefer long distance events.  Here's food for thought that many people forget: the sprint distance means you're supposed to sprint through it.  Sound easy?

Some struggle with keeping a consistent schedule, others have no problem with it.

Some coaches have physical restrictions and some coaches have been healthy their entire lives.

Coaches are educated to know how to maximize everyone's potential to enjoy whatever distance that person prefers - including themselves.  One distance isn't better than the other for you, nor for us.  

It doesn't make you superior to another triathlete because you do a longer race, faster race or more races in a year and it doesn't make us superior either.  We're ALL out there having fun, reaching goals, training smart & crossing finish lines. If we're not enjoying ourselves we're not doing it right.  

You get my point, right?  

I LOVE triathlons, so much so that I made working with others to become triathletes my profession.  That's passion, baby!  I do sprints, Olympics, 5k's, half marathons, full marathons and everything in between.  I do them because I LOVE them.  

I train others because I know the benefits they give if we put the work in.  I don't expect you to do my preferred race distance anymore than you should expect me to do what you're doing.

So if you're someone that has gotten into doing events - whatever event that is, please don't allow another person to take away your efforts.  There's no such thing as "Just."  They're all getting you to your personal goals & that's something to be proud of! - Emily Collins, owner of OnTrack Fitness, triathlon coach, triathlete

If you're ready to reach your goals, whatever they may be contact me.  I'd love to help.