Story by Ellie Bailey '19
How many years have you been running, biking, and swimming?
I started running when I was a baby, I guess. I did my first race, an 800-meter race, when I was two. I began swimming in the summer when I was six, then transitioned to year round swimming when I was eight. I didn’t start biking until I was fourteen. I mean I learned to ride a bike when I was little but did not start training until fourteen.
How many hours a week do you train?
It really depends on the season, but on average I’d say I swim five times, run four times, and bike two times a week, so probably 15 to 20 hours per week I’d guess. But it really depends. The summer is my heaviest training period because I have more time.
What is more difficult– the mental or physical aspect of training?
Recently I would definitely say the mental aspect. I’ve had a bunch of different injuries over the years, and it’s been hard for me to get back into the training at times because I often struggle to envision myself being as good of an athlete as I was before the injury. And in terms of day-to-day training, it’s totally a mental game. There’s this quote I love– it goes something like “Ask yourself, can you give more? The answer is usually yes.” That’s not exactly the quote but it’s very true. Minds give up much sooner than the body does. Yes, the physical aspect is challenging, but I believe that training your brain to deal with the physical challenges is more important.
Which is your favorite leg of the triathlon?
It used to be swimming but now running for sure.
Do you have a favorite cross-country course?
I loved the footlocker regional course at Van Cortlandt Park. Also Derwood is awesome.
Is there a professional athlete who really inspires you?
Probably Katie Ledecky because we are on the same club swim team (NCAP) and sometimes our groups practice together. Her work ethic is amazing, and she’s so tough.
Do you have a favorite pre-competition breakfast?
Yes! Always toast with peanut butter and banana. Also I eat a gel a few minutes before the race.
What are your long terms goals for your sports? Do you plan to compete in college?
Yes. I hope to run in college. I’d love to continue throughout college and hopefully be able to train for the Olympics, but most of all I want to enjoy it.