Mix 1 Athlete of the Month: Sarah Peltier
Please meet our Mix1 Athlete of the Month, Sarah Peltier. Sarah is relatively new to multisport and just recently raced her first Iron Distance race. She’s a fast learner as she qualified for 70.3 World’s last year and this year was 2nd at the Poconos 70.3 – in a tight photo finish. She’s got an intense job with a major financial services company and puts everything she can into her training, making all kind of adjustments as her work can some dictate her training time.
Can you tell us a little bit about your sports background? A year out of college I signed up to run a marathon for a local charity because it sounded like a good challenge. I enjoyed having a race goal to keep me focused on running and therefore not smoking, as the two are not particularly compatible.
Which sports did you do as a kid and as you got older? As a kid I tried dancing, volleyball, a few months of synchronized swimming and a bit of cycling. I wasn’t particularly good at any of them.
What was your motivation to get started in triathlon? For years I was an average, often-injured distance runner. The diversity of triathlon training seemed to offer a lower-impact endurance alternative. I enjoyed cycling growing up. And thought I could remember how to swim. So triathlon was a natural fit. The additional whole-body strength I’ve built through multisport has been a key to injury prevention for me. It also turns out that being relatively mediocre at all three disciplines makes for a good triathlete. I’d finally found a sport I was good at!
When and where was your first race? My first race was at Blenheim Palace outside London, England in June 2009. I did the race in a borrowed wetsuit, on a borrowed bike that was entirely too big for me in the cold pouring rain – perfect English weather. I thought it was super fun?!
What do you do for work? I am a Vice President of Marketing at a Fortune 100 financial services firm. It’s a job which comes with long hours, plenty of stress, and travel every other week. So like most multi-sporters, I have to be very creative in finding time for training sessions. Running through New York City to get straight on a train to go home to DC? Check. Taking a tour of a gym in Arizona just to get a day pass to use a pool once? Check. Putting my blackberry on a shelf in the shower so I can get clean while on a conference call? Check.
What services have you used at D3 to help you with reaching your goals? I’ve benefitted greatly from D3 personal coaching. Coming off of a long period of virtually no training due to work earlier this year, my coach put me through the paces of a training plan to get me IM ready in just 6 months. Of course there are tons of quality sessions detailed in my schedule that I never would have dreampt of or attempted on my own. However, D3 has helped me in two important ways: personal feedback on training sessions & modifying my training plan to accommodate my ever changing travel schedule. My coach brings an extra perspective; he knows when to push and when I need a break.
Have you done any races that you’d traveled for? I’ve done races in the United Kingdom (where I lived for 8 years) and in 6 states, from Florida to Wisconsin. Other than the races in the UK, my husband and I enjoy the road-trips for the races.
Best Triathlon moment? Best and worst triathlon moment: this September, Poconos 70.3. Had a good swim, great bike, and thought I was in a good position in my age group heading out on to the run. At about mile 11 I knew I was in the lead. Mile 12 I turned around and didn’t see any other women. At the turn to the finishing stretch, I looked behind me and still saw no women. As I was crossing the finish line, out of the corner of my eye I saw a leg appear out of nowhere. That leg was attached to a foot with a chip on it that was about 6 inches ahead of my foot. I have no idea where she came from! Finished with half IM PR of 5:04, but was second in my age group by LITERALLY less than a second. Gutted!
What is your favorite race and why? The Charleston (SC) Sprint Triathlon Series (CSTS). It’s a local sprint race held 5 times every summer. It’s a super well organized series that brings together the small but growing triathlon community in the area.
What are your long term goals in triathlon? To stay healthy and keep racing until it stops being fun.
If you could spend one day training with anyone, who would it be? Bob Harper from the Biggest Loser. I’m fascinated and energized by his ability to motivate people.
What’s in your race future? Vegas 70.3 next year at a minimum…and perhaps another IM distance.
What’s your favorite workout? I recently moved to Washington, DC and have started doing hill workouts on the steepest hill in town – Capitol Hill. The capitol building is at the top of a steep .3 mile climb. I stash my bottle in a bush next to a security hut and do my repeats in the midst of tourists, hill staffers and police. It’s never the same scene twice.
What your least favorite workout? Swimming anything longer than 3000m. I run out of conversations to have with myself and the black line.
Tell us something interesting about you! I have a phenomenal ability to become motion sick. I get motion sick on cruise ships, snorkeling, swimming in lakes, flying on small planes, riding in the car etc. I even get woozy in the elevators to the 40th floor at the office, and looking at aquariums with thick glass. As a result, open water swimming has been a big challenge for me. I’ve had to learn how to train my brain to focus intensely on the shore line so that can make it to T1.
Thanks for the great interview Sarah, and good luck in 2013!