Since I started this journey in triathlon, one of my goals has been to race at the elite level. Having a solid background in swimming & running, and performing well at my first few triathlons, I knew this was not completely out of reach. With some hard work and the right guidance, I thought I had the ability to qualify for my PRO card. In my first meeting with Tim, he also believed I had the potential to compete at that level. Seeing the achievements of the QT2 athletes, both pro and amateur, I knew I had come to the right place to help me reach my goals.
One of the criteria to earn a USAT elite license is to finish top-3 overall amateur in an elite qualifying race (a race that has at least a $20k prize purse for pros). At my first 70.3 race of 2013, I finished 4th. At my 2nd 70.3 race, I finished 4th again. They say 3rd times a charm, and I finally finished top-3 amateur in my next 70.3, and managed to sneak into the top 10 overall.
I knew I was going to finish out the year as an amateur, competing the IM 70.3 World Championships. Unfortunately, the final race of the season was not what I had hoped it would be, and I was disappointed in the outcome. I didn’t feel I had proved I was worthy of taking my PRO card (at this race), so I wavered back and forth on when I should “go pro”. After a few months of considering the pros and cons (pun intended), I’ve decided to go for it, and starting now, I am officially a registered Elite triathlete!
I can’t begin to thank the people who have helped me get here, support me every day, and who make me confident in my decision to race pro. My family – my rock, with their unwavering love & support. Tim, Jesse, and QT2 – for believing in me and continually giving me the opportunities to become the best athlete I can be. And of course, my main man Matt (I love alliteration!), who provides motivation through his all-in dedication to triathlon, takes good care of my bike, and is willing to meet me for Whole Foods dates after leaving the pool exhausted with goggle marks & wet hair. 2014 will also be Matt’s first year competing as a pro, and I’m excited that we’ll be embarking on this journey together.
I don’t have a full race schedule planned out yet, but I’m planning to kick off my season at Ironman 70.3 Texas. In related news, I also plan to have my Ironman debut this year! I have a lot of work to do before I’m ready to tackle the full distance, so we’re planning for sometime this fall. The distance still scares me a little, but I know when the time comes, I’ll be ready!
But first up, I’m heading to Florida next week to join my QT2 teammates for 17 days of PRO camp. I’m looking forward to spending some focused time training, in some warmer weather. Last year was a great learning experience for me, and I know I’ll continue to learn a ton and be pushed to new places by my amazingly talented teammates!
If your dreams don’t scare you, they aren’t big enough