>We know all about professional triathletes, right? I mean, we read about them in Triathlete Magazine, we watch them on Universal Sports and NBC’s coverage of Kona. We think we understand their motivations and desires just from the snippets that TV producers like us to see.
Unfortunately, what we see is not always the “full” picture.
We do have a more insightful picture of several athletes in our sport. Many professional triathletes have taken to the web. Twitter. Facebook. Blogs. If you’re a fan of blogs, chances are you’ve come across the blog of today’s interviewee, Bree Wee.
Bree lives and trains in Hawaii. Much of the island lifestyle is incorporated into her blog. She writes frequently, and includes some of the best pictures on any blog I’ve read.
Today is your chance to get an inside look behind the NBC snippets into the life of a professional triathlete. This week’s version of “Ten Questions With…” is with Bree Wee:
TM: You’re a self proclaimed “surfer girl”. How did you get into triathlon?
BW: Ha ha, now I think I’m more of a kook, it was my first love & sport, once you get surfing in your blood you never lose it right?! My old roomie was a marathoner and she convinced me to sign up for a marathon. That landed me with Kona Aquatics, then buying a bike, (because everyone on the island has one). While playing around with run shoes and the bike I saw the World Champs (03) literally run through my back yard and I said, “I have to do that” even though I thought it was crazy.
TM: What sports were you into as a kid?
BW: I played all the really competitive ones, kick ball, tag, hide n’ seek, snorkeling, and beach volley ball.
TM: What’s the best thing about living & training in Hawaii?
BW: There is no possible way I could sum it up to a single thing. Every day I find another reason to be thankful for my life here.
TM: Does living in Hawaii offer you any training advantages that other pros don’t have?
BW: Lots of heat, a giant ocean swimming play ground, and the Ironman course. However we don’t have nearly as many athletes, triathlon clubs/groups, to race we must travel SOOOOOOO far, and things are sometimes more challenging to come by here, so like everything in life it’s give & take….but I’ll take it.
TM: Many of your races require you to travel long distances. For example, earlier this year you traveled to South Africa. This week, you’re heading to Louisville. How do you handle all the travel and not have that negatively impact your race?
BW: Truthfully I’m still working on the travel thing. So far it’s affected me in most all my races. Being a mom it’s not easy for me to get to the races with lots of time to adjust. I’m always racing jet lagged or in the wrong time zone or still working out some flight related injury (like IM South Africa). The thing coach has helped me to understand is to embrace the travel and accept that it’s not always going to be smooth, bikes show up the day before the race as they get lost in the Pacific 🙂 The more calm I can be the easier my body seems to adjust.
TM: You are a high-frequency blogger. How do you capture all the amazing photos that you post? Do you have a camera surgically implanted or something?
BW: Writing was my thing in college so keeping a webpage up-to-date is minor for me. As for the photos, life amazes me everyday in some small way, I dont want to miss it. For sure we can have our memories but those arent always easy to share with others. most people make sure they have their phone when leaving the house, I make sure I have my camera. Like last night on the way home from swim practice, the sunset was unreal! It totally stole my breath, I pulled over on the side of the road and snapped a few photos.
TM: What’s a typical training week like for you as you’re building for an Iron distance race? How many hours do you invest, what kind of distances, etc?
BW: Ahhhh, lovely my least favorite question…but because I like you Ill answer it. As a single mom there is no “typical” training week. If Kainoa is sick there goes my bike ride. If I’m struggling for a sitter my swims become swimming with Kainoa. Then there are the weeks Kainoa is with his dad and I have all the time in the world and can ride all over the island. Since you asked for numbers I’ll say between 10-30 hours depending on of course motherhood. Very few weeks are more others are less.
TM: What has been your favorite race so far in your career? Aside from a podium finish, what makes a race a “great race” for you?
BW: oooooh, for sure Philippines 70.3, Honu, South Africa & Japan! Love them most. Amazing in all ways. “Great race” for me usually has to do with location. I’m a big fan of being somewhere warm, laid back, tropical, far from city life. That said, REV3 Costa Rica will be my favorite race even though it’s not till Feb, 2011. Costa Rica is my second home & knowing the race directors it’s going to be well organized too.
TM: You seem to have a high passion for food. What can you share about that?
BW: Its like my 8th hobby. I love cooking/baking and playing in the kitchen. My secret dream is to publish a cookbook. I’ve been working on it since 2006! The problem is all my recipes are “a bit of this and some of that” so I never write down measurements; nobody could follow a single recipe if I tried to give them one!
TM: Spam. Delicacy or awful?
BW: Awful on the mainland, totally sick! In the islands, make one musubi and you better believe its amazing!! We got the know how on how to wrap n’ roll 🙂
TM: Bonus question: You’re going back to race IMKY – where in 2008 you had by all accounts a great race even though you didn’t podium. Based on your current fitness level and how you’ve been training, how do you expect to fare this year?
BW: Ill tell you next Sunday 🙂
To read Bree’s amazing blog, check out her website.
To follow Bree in this Sunday’s IMKY, go to Ironman.com.