Athlete of the Month, April 2014 – Lisa Plunkett
Athlete of the Month
In addition to juggling a full-time job, a family (with twin, teenage boys), a litter of new puppies, and some rough winter weather, Lisa prepared herself for Ironman Los Cabos last month. A March Ironman is pretty tough to train for when you live in Boulder. This was Lisa‚Äôs 9th Ironman, so she knew what she was getting into. Her perspective and sense of humor were tremendous assets throughout the process and made her fun to coach. There was plenty of time on the trainer, but her workouts focused on quality over quantity. Come race day, the training paid off big time‚Äìshe PR‚Äôd this course by over an hour!
Can‚Äôt wait to see what she does at IM Boulder this summer! Congrats, Lisa ‚Äî this is well-deserved recognition!
Enjoy the Q&A with the D3 April Athlete of the Month.
Tell us what inspires you to race long distance, in particular, Ironmans?
I signed up for my first in 2005. It was IM Wisconsin, and I did it because I had it in my mind (like a bucket-list) to do one before hitting 40. Like so many others, the only way to overcome the post-Ironman Blues was to sign up for another, and another, and another‚Ä¶
How many have you raced? Do you have a favorite?
Los Cabos 2014 was my 9th and the only one I‚Äôve ever repeated. Los Cabos 2013 just about killed me, and it destroyed the rest of the 2013 season. I still raced in 2013 since I was registered, but turned in some of the poorest performances in terms of finish times.
Favorite? Nah, they‚Äôre all special. WI, for being the first. Switzerland for the experience, FL for the fastest time (and beautiful beaches), US Championship in NY for being able to race in one of the most incredible places ever. And I‚Äôm really looking forward to Boulder so that I can race among friends in my hometown!
What is a race highlight from your recent race, IM Los Cabos?
Finishing the bike. Again. Like last year, the bike course was brutally HOT, Hilly and windy. Kind of how I suspect Boulder is going to feel in August‚Ä¶
What is a take away from your IM Los Cabos experience that you‚Äôll bring forward to the Boulder IM?Lisa Plunkett_Cozumel_v2
Hydrate well and properly ‚Äì no tequila shots pre-race, no matter how tempting they may be =) ! Prepare mentally for a long, hot day. Oh, and get outdoor rides in!
Your coach describes that you had a great attitude about your training all winter, what did you do throughout the winter to keep it light and fun?
I know I spent too much time on the Computrainer watching NetFlix. I became addicted to Breaking Bad and didn‚Äôt ride outside enough. It made it easy to train indoors, but probably left me a bit under-prepared for the long day in the saddle. My boys and I did Rock & Roll Phoenix in January again this year, and I managed a fantastic 6 hour ride the day before the race. That was an outstanding weekend!
What nugget of wisdom would you share with a rookie Ironman athlete or a beginner triathlete?
Keep it fun and balanced. Remember we aren‚Äôt getting paid to do this and that the event itself is only one day. Your family and friends will be your allies. You will need them to carry you through the periods of self-doubt and your periods of crankiness. Remember to thank them often and sincerely. Don‚Äôt miss your kids‚Äô events in order to train. Ride to their games or meets if necessary; but by all means, DO NOT miss them. Oh, and if you have a chance to stop on course during the race, do it. I stopped once during the ride for hugs and kisses and again right before the finish for the same. Did I lose a few minutes? Absolutely! Did it matter? Not one teeny bit.
Tell us a little more about yourself ‚Äì besides triathlon, what keeps you grounded?
I was a mother, wife and daughter before becoming a triathlete. I suspect I will be all of those when I stop! I volunteer at church, school and sporting events. I work full time and lead a very full, rich life outside of this crazy sport. I am a 9 time IM finisher, but would hope to be remembered for so much more. I love triathlon and what it has allowed me to do. I know it has given me more self-confidence then any other achievement. It has given me the faith that I really can do anything. It has also allowed me to set a good example not only to my children, but their friends as well.
Who is your coach, and how have they helped you achieve your goals?
My coach is Dave Sheanin with D3. Mike Ricci (D3) has thrown in some good advice too. Previously I was coached by Craig Howie (Howie Endurance Project). They have all helped me become the athlete I am today. Dave is awesome as he understands that I am likely to switch around his workouts to fit into the kids‚Äô schedules. He‚Äôs great at getting the most benefit from the least amount of training; which is perfect for me. I need efficiency in my training, not more hours away from regular ‚Äúlife.‚Äù Oh, and Dave helped me hit a 1:06 PR from last years‚Äô IM Los Cabos race!!
If you could race against any pro (and win ‚Ä¶ this is a hypothetical question), who would it be and why?
Hmmm. I really don‚Äôt know given that this would be such a stretch. I would like to race with Sister Madonna Buder just to spend time with someone as special as she is. It would be fun to ride with Lance Armstrong as I‚Äôll bet he‚Äôs got a lot of stories to share and I personally like his Texas attitude! Of course, to run with Mirinda Carfrea, as in, just to be able to keep pace with her would be pretty incredible too!
What do you like to read (or music) to keep your head in the game?
My ITunes has everything from kids‚Äô music ‚Äì to 50‚Ä≤s ‚Äì to Petty and ACDC ‚Äì to Katie Perry. So long as it‚Äôs got a good beat, I‚Äôm in‚Ä¶