Athlete of the Month - Mandy Wedel

What made you decide to compete in a half Ironman?

I have dreamed about doing one since I crossed the finish line of my first triathlon. It is such a hard sport, and knowing that I could do something so difficult made me crave more.

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What event is your favourite?

The bike and the swim for sure! I used to be TERRIFIED of open water and couldn’t fathom the swim being bearable even though I was super confident in the pool. I got over my fear by signing up for the Interior Savings Across the Lake Swim a few years ago and conquered my fear. Now I love thinking about my progress during the swim.

What event is your least favourite and how do you get through that event?

The run. My body type is not designed for running. It's tough but I just keep trying. It's a massive mental battle for me when my body starts to feel uncomfortable. My mantra this last few months was that things have to get uncomfortable for growth to happen and I remind myself of that during every single run or hill climb.

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What has made the biggest difference in your training regime?

Consistency with the training itself, and consistency with taking care of myself with help from Promotion of course. Thanks Vanessa and Dr. Lars!!

Do you participate in any other sport or fitness activities?

I've strictly been doing triathlon activities for about 1 year but I love to throw hiking in there as much as possible. I used to do kickboxing which I LOVE.

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Do you have any superstitions or pre event rituals?

I always try to take a few minutes to breath deeply to try and stay calm before it starts. No superstitions...aside from the fact that I think having a black and red bike makes you faster by default.

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What is your favourite meal/food to eat before training or event?

No favourites here. I eat oatmeal before every race and I hate it so much.

What advice would you give to someone wanting to compete in an event like this?

Just try it! No pun intended. Don't worry about your time - I dont! - know that this sport takes so much dedication that just finishing or even not finishing and trying is worth every bit of sweat.

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Who in your daily life motivates you?

Oh man! So many people. Strangers that I meet through my work inspire me. Everyone you meet has a story to tell. My friends are people who inspire me for sure and my mom. She can go for months at a time without exercise, due to her health and randomly climb a mountain without complaint. Makes you realize that you are capable of more than you think when you watch others do things that are hard.

Who in your sport inspires you?

Every single person who crosses the Ironman finish line between 11pm & 12am. The amount of perseverance and outright determination to make it in the last hour is insane. I absolutely loved the book the Iron Nun wrote, she is AMAZING. Let's just be honest here, I watch Ironman Kona every year when it airs and cry at most of the highlight stories so I may as well just add everyone to this list.

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