Kris Mahadocon of Fremont, California
How did you get started in multisport?
I started off with Team In Training in 2005 on the run team. My uncle was diagnosed with leukemia and I decided to join TNT to raise money in his honor. I went from couch potato to finishing a marathon that year. I spent another season with TNT in 2006, training for the same marathon, this time in memory of my uncle. Then in 2007 I thought it would be fun to do something different and participate in a triathlon. I signed up for the beginner friendly, all women sprint tri that took place not more than a mile from my house. I used my ancient road bike that had been hanging upside down in the garage for ages, did next to no training, and had a blast. The toys have been upgraded a little since then, but the challenge of tri is still as exciting as it was that first race.
What was the highlight of your 2009 season?
Far and away the highlight of 2009 was finishing Kona after having won a lottery spot. Like a lot of people, I’d watched the TV coverage for a number of years and entered the lottery, never really expecting to get in. When I was picked, I was both unbelievably excited and terrified. I had planned for my first iron distance race to be Vineman, which was about 8 weeks prior to Kona. Liz assured me from the start that I could do both races and that I’d have no problem finishing Kona. I wasn’t so sure, but was willing to trust the process and do the work. It was a long, hot, tough day out there for me, but I just kept reminding myself how lucky I was to be there. And eventually, just like Liz had said I would, I made it to the finish line. The crowd and volunteers were amazing and the energy of the finish line was insane. Not least of all because Chrissie Wellington was there to put a lei around my neck, offer congratulations and give me a hug. Definitely the highlight not only of 2009 but of all my athletic endeavors.
How has a coach helped you to become a better athlete?
There are the obvious answers, things like setting up my schedule so I don’t have to worry about what I should do when, for how long, at what intensity. Making sure I incorporate enough rest and recovery. Giving me nutritional information and guidance, pacing for races, answering all my questions, no matter how crazy. Analyzing my swim stroke, my run mechanics, and all those Garmin and PowerTap files. All these things have helped me become a better athlete and are things I love about having a coach. The most important thing though, is that in doing the work Liz gives me, I’ve gained a confidence that I never had before. I know now that I can push harder, gain strength, and get faster. I believe in myself and the ability of my body to do what I ask of it.
What are you looking forward to in 2010?
This year I’m really looking forward to pushing my limits in new ways. I wasn’t athletic as a kid. Before my first marathon in 2005, I wasn’t even a very active adult and most of my training since that time has been working on distance, and the slow, steady pace that goes along with that. Now that I know I’m capable of going the distance, I want to work on becoming a smoother swimmer, a stronger cyclist, a faster runner and then put it all together to do some short, speedy tris. While I have a long way to go, I’m happy to say that Liz has me going in the right direction. I’m already seeing paces on shorter runs that I haven’t ever seen, including topping my best 5k pace per mile in an 8k race. And the year is just getting started, so I’m anticipating more good things to come.
I worked with a different coach in 2008 and just have to say that it’s a night and day experience. Liz’s detailed instructions, responsiveness, and humor make working with her a real pleasure. While I may say something different during a hard workout, or in the late hours of Ironman, I love that she pushes me to get out of my little comfort box. It’s the only way to make progress and I’m seeing those results. To anyone debating about hiring a coach, I’d just say….go for it, you won’t regret it.
We’ve barely just begun 2010 yet Kris has already set a new running personal best. I look forward to watching her tap into her inner-athlete and find new speed this season. GO KRIS!