Friday, August 31, 2018

Kona Profiles - Laura Yost "Host with the Most"


The Ironman World Championships ("Kona") will be here before we know it, taking place Oct. 13th. As you know, it's incredibly competitive to qualify and a major accomplishment to do so. As we've done the last 2 years, we'll be catching up with our local Cinderellas... getting to know them as a tri community and cheering them on as they get ready for the ball!

Laura and Gentry Yost live in Pocatello, ID, but are known by many members of the UT tri community and deserving of some love. First up is Laura, and in the near future we'll catch up with her husband as well.


Name:  Laura Yost

Age Group:  F4044 

Qualified:  Ironman Boulder

Qualifying AG Place & Time:   2nd   10:53:01

Splits:  Swim 1:15   Bike 5:22    Run 4:08

What’s your athletic background and how did you get into triathlon?

I grew up playing multiple sports. As an adult I enjoyed running ultra distance and racing endurance horses (50-100 mile races).


We learned that you raced Kona last year, throwing down a 3:46 marathon en route to 11:05 overall and 29th in your AG. Have you raced Kona other years as well, and where did you qualify for each?

I qualified for my first time to Kona at Ironman Lake Tahoe 2015 (the last time the race was held), then at Coeur d'Alene in 2017.

Can you give us a high level recap of your day at Ironman Boulder?

I knew IM Boulder was going to be tough. Not only does it draw strong athletes, I also knew the conditions were going to be an issue. I expected the temps to be low 90's and I have noticed from prior visits that Boulder is more humid then Pocatello. I am not as strong on the swim as I would like to be so I had a goal of pacing well and coming out of the water ready to push hard on the bike. I had studied the bike course and knew where I would have tail/head winds, where I could find time and where I needed to be patient. I enjoy descending so I took full advantage of all of the descends and got as aero as possible to gain speed. I stuck to my plan of how many watts I wanted to push and was diligent with my hydration. I feel like I paced the bike well and used every opportunity to get cooled down with the water from the aid stations. I started the run and had pretty heavy legs. I also had a huge blister on my left foot which was weird for me so early on. I actually stopped and removed my shoe thinking I had something in it... nope just a big blister. Possibly from all of the water I drenched myself with during the bike! A couple miles into the run I found a comfortable pace and tried to hold steady.



What specific race day strategies enabled you to excel on a very hot day in Boulder when it broke so many fellow participants?

A week prior to the race I wrote down my nutrition and hydration plan in detail. I knew what I would eat 2 days prior through the end of the race. I had a plan of how many watts I would shoot for early on on the bike portion and knew that if I pushed too hard it would all catch up to me later. I had set a goal of how much hydration/calories/electrolytes I needed and knew I would be self evaluating every hour to assess what I was short on or what I needed to change. I knew that I had to be adaptable to the conditions and monitor closely how my body was reacting to the heat. The night before the race I upped my electrolytes in my bottles. I took in as much water on top of my normal nutrition bottles as I could, and took every opportunity to use water and ice to cool down.

How many spots were awarded for your age group at Boulder, and how aware of your position were you throughout the day? How deep in the pain cave did you have to go to hold off 3rd in your AG (just under 5 min back)… or was there enough cushion to be comfortable?

I knew there were only two spots available and that there were plenty of women who could easily take them. I came off the bike not knowing anything about where I was placed. About 4 miles into the run my son and daughter were on course and told me there were 5 women ahead of me still. I definitely had a moment of self doubt because my legs were abnormally heavy. Unfortunately, I have a very fussy stomach so if I consume too many calories too early it rebels, this happened in Kona last year. Because I was protecting my stomach so well I think I went a little low on fuel. I stayed well hydrated though and this is what saved me. All I knew is that I couldn't look at my watch because I would get discouraged with my pace. I luckily deal well with heat and can tolerate a good amount of pain while running. I definitely was hurting in my legs... I'm not even sure if I paid attention to ages on the calves of the women I passed, I just went into my run zone where all I think about is the rhythm of my feet hitting the ground. At mile 13 Jen Johnson, my coach's wife and a BAM coach informed me that I had a healthy lead above 3rd place and that I could slow down. Never in a race have I chosen to slow on purpose and not chase 1st... this would be the first for me. I happily slowed and even took my time through aid stations. At that point I just wanted to finish strong and not give up too much time and lose 2nd.


As a resident of Idaho, how did you connect with BAM? How long have you worked with them, and who is your coach? Are there other Idahoans among the BAMFAM not named Yost?

At the 2015 Ironman Lake Tahoe I qualified for Kona 2016. I had trained myself and had set myself up perfectly to have a full year to prepare for my first World Championship Ironman. I visited Dr. Max Testa in Park City for a bike fit and asked him to coach me. He said he didn't coach triathletes anymore but gave me a few names of local coaches. I chose to go with BAM and hired Ali Black as my first coach to get me better prepared for Kona. After Kona 2016 my husband thought that it looked pretty dang cool to race in Hawaii so he hired Wes Johnson (BAM) to coach him. I thought it might be healthy to each have our own coaches. I again qualified for Kona out of Coeur d'Alene IM 2017. After 2017 my husband and I realized that with both of us trying to compete at a high level we wouldn't be seeing each other often. We have 4 children going in all different directions, my husband is a busy Pediatrician and I have my own work load with my own clients and teaching at the University. At the beginning of this year I decided to switch coaches and went with Wes. This allowed us to both train and date at the same time. Our schedules frequently work together and allows us to see much more of each other. As far as I know we are the only Idahoans to be coached by BAM.



Are there any differences between the triathlon communities/scene in Idaho vs. Utah?

The triathlon scene differs greatly mostly due to numbers. The clubs in Utah are much bigger and events are well attended. That is not to say we do not have some absolutely amazing strong athletes up here! We do have a small club locally but nothing that offers the type of coaching we wanted.

Do you and your husband ever have friendly competitions going into races?

This question really got me thinking about how competitive Gentry and I are with each other. We compete in almost everything and go so far as to having blood pressure/heart rate competitions on those machines in the grocery store! After training sessions we compare average HR's or how many miles were run during a workout. The interesting part of this question is that we have never competed or made bets about a race. When race week rolls around we are absolutely one with each other. I figure out our calorie/electrolyte needs, Gentry gets my bike and gear in proper working order. We celebrate each other's success and comfort each other after failures. We are very competitive people but on race day we truly compete with ourselves, only to look forward to sharing each other's success.





Would it be worth your while to travel south for at least 3 Utah Triathlon Championship Series races in an attempt to steal the F4044 Championship Belt (currently held by Tracy Campbell), or is your motivation focused more squarely on Ironman?

I did not know this title existed. I prefer long course but I will never say never! I would love to schedule some of these races and use them to build fitness and speed for long course races. I happen to be good friends with Tracy so it's always an honor to race her!

Anything else you’d like to share?

I would like to tell all of those women out there that have self doubt.... You absolutely can! It's never too early or too late. Kids or no kids, partner or no partner it can be the best thing you will ever do for yourselves. Anyone can learn to swim/bike/run, trust me on this one. It doesn't matter how fast, slow, ugly, or pretty you are doing it, what matters is that you deserve to do something for yourself. There are amazing resources all around Utah so take advantage and get out there and TRI!

Related Posts


Kona Profiles: BJ Christenson Back for #10

Utah Triathlon Championship Series



We started a Patreon account (link below) with the hope of raising few bucks towards awards & swag for athletes of all abilities in our tri community. We've given out a lot over the past 2 years, but would like to continue to expand our offerings & the volume we can do.

If you enjoy Utah Tri Buzz and would like to pitch in, any amount would be greatly appreciated... (there may be something in it for you as well!)

We're also always grateful for talented people who contribute in terms of time... let us know if you'd like to be part of the Utah Tri Buzz team.

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Kona Profiles - BJ Christenson Back for #10


The Ironman World Championships ("Kona") will be here before we know it, taking place Oct. 13th. As you know, it's incredibly competitive to qualify and a major accomplishment to do so. As we've done the last 2 years, we'll be catching up with our local Cinderellas... getting to know them better as a tri community and cheering them on as they get ready for the ball!

Name: BJ Christenson

Age Group: M3539 when qualified, now M4044

Qualified: Ironman Maryland (2017)

Qualifying AG Place & Time: 3rd  9:12:01

Splits: Swim 59  Bike 4:51  Run 3:14




You’ve raced Kona almost every year going back over a decade. Was it a big letdown to race injured in 2016, then to not qualify in '17, and does it mean more to you this year?

There was obviously some of that... it was a good reminder that nobody hands a Kona Qualifying slot to you. Sometimes you have bad/good luck, sometimes you didn’t prepare properly, etc. Stuff happens. I knew I wanted to do one more, and after my accident before Kona 2016, I wanted to get one more in for a 10th time, a good round number to walk away from it. Obviously it’s frustrating when you miss a spot, but in hindsight it worked out ok and gave me time to think about other things in my life. Now I’m ready to give it an honest crack. I’m 40 now and some things have changed… I don’t recover quite as fast and I’m getting injuries I never used to get!

How did Ironman Maryland compare to all the others you’ve done, and how did the race play out for you?

I loved Maryland. It’s a great course, and I think one of the best for people who want to do an Ironman for the first time. Salt water swim in Chesapeake Bay, flat bike, flat run and the community really gets behind it. For anyone with restrictions on racing Sundays, it’s a Saturday race, and the time of year gives you all summer to prepare for it. Even though it’s flat, it’s still scenic, going through protected wetland areas, etc. It’s a really fun course and I enjoyed it.


My wife was there with me, my fiancĂ©e at the time, so she could tell me where I was in the standings. I was nervous with my preparation going into it; it wasn’t the best. I had a calf strain, something I’m dealing with also this year. I still had the faith that I could pull it together. And if I didn’t get it, well you can only give your best on the day.

The swim was the best it could have been, and things were going really well on the ride. On the 2nd loop though a guy I was lapping cut me off and I ran into a volunteer, causing me to lose the group I was chasing and keeping tabs on. From then on there was nobody, it was my own race.

I didn’t know if my calf was gonna hold on for me so I played it safe, just trying to run steady miles. At mile 12-13 I knew I was in 2nd or 3rd and that there would probably be 3 spots (in the M3539 age group). I just made sure to maintain that position and luckily there were 3 slots.



Is the fire burning strongly in terms of training or are you more excited to just be at Kona again?

It’s been a roller coaster. The fire was there, then I got hurt again. I keep tabs on some of the top guys... Sam Gyde for example, in Belgium, has a stress fracture in his femur. It happens. My focus now is getting as much volume as I can, and not so much on the intensity. I do want to compete, that’s still my goal. This is my last time, at least for a while, and my parents are coming out for the first time. Not to say I won’t go back when I'm 50 or something, but I won’t be sacrificing and trying to get to Kona every year anymore. There are a lot of other races that need to get done!

Over two years ago now we interviewed you and you said “I wish there was more organization to race scheduling. I’d love to see a cohesive series.” Well, we went to work with the local RD's to make it happen! What are your thoughts on the new Utah Triathlon Championship Series along with the one-day State Champ race (rotating venue, Brineman Olympic for 2018)?

I think it’s awesome. It’s been a good start and I think people are getting into it. We have two major clubs in the valley, and they may have more of a relationship with some races vs. others. I'd like to see everybody show up at all the races.

(mind reader BJ actually anticipated this next question before it was asked, as the conversation turned to how to make the Series better next year)



We’ll always look for ways to make the Series stronger & better… at Jordanelle we were talking about Sprint vs. Olympic racing… do you think the Series would be stronger if limited to 10 races, and not just events?

Yeah that would be version 2.0. We want to encourage people to race each other! The points in Nascar aren’t equal if you did the "Daytona 250" when everyone else is in the 500.

For some events maybe all the points are in the Olympic. Maybe for others the Sprint, for others the Half. Let the RD decide. I think having one race as the focus would be great for those who want to see how they stack up, whereas other distances would be more participatory.

You wanna see who’s the best, rac’em on the day... that’s what I like to see, that fun competitive spirit. We are always encouraging participation and for newbies to come out; everyone is welcome. But racing is racing!


BJ swam like this at Kona 2016
What do you hope to see at the State Champ race at Brineman, and what would you say to someone on the fence?

Wherever you finish at the State Champs is what matters. The Rankings are fun and a good indicator, but the State Championship is everything. There, that’s my throw down statement!

That said, personally I need to be careful with my calf going into Kona... but I would love to see... the Olympic's the race, right? Let’s get everyone on the Olympic starting line. There's something fun about racing, it gets the best out of each other. Don’t shrink from competition. Embrace it. Let’s toe the line and let’s go for it. There's no enemies… it's just that having somebody breathing down your neck will make you better, and show you what you’ve got. I like to see lots of people at the races. If you wanna see where you stack up against your peers, let’s all race together, and you'll learn where you can improve. State Champs is for all the bragging rights.


There was some discussion early on about whether the State Championship event should consist of 1 distance or all distances… you (and we) felt strongly that it should be one distance. Thoughts? 

It would be so diluted otherwise… our pool is too small. We don’t have 1,000 people at any of the races. I think Sprint distance races are great for people new to the sport and for younger kids working on speed. The Olympic is where the adults play. Multiple distances don’t always give a good indication of where the talent is... finish 7th in your age group at the State champs? That's awesome, and you should feel a lot happier about that than, say, 3rd in the Sprint.



As far as we know you’ve never been part of a local club before this year. What motivated you to join the new Intermountain team, and what are your general thoughts on the team and its mission?

The Intermountain team is a little different. I’m on as a mentor to give counsel, not to coach, but to help out where I can. That was intriguing, and I see it as a valuable role. They asked if I'd be part of it and I accepted.

When you’re “on,” are you still Utah’s fastest Ironman or can anyone take you?

I don’t know. Jorge has come up pretty good... great time at Ironman Arizona. Brice has come a long ways as well. One day Andrew will jump into long course. I’m coaching a young kid, Jacob Barnes, and at his first Ironman this year he knocked it out of the park. He’ll be someone to watch.

I don’t know how many more times I can go digging in that well. I'm still going for the fastest Utah time. I've held that standard for a while and want to keep it!



If Kona is no longer a motivator going forward after #10, what do you see for the next 2-3 seasons?

Local races and also maybe some bucket list style events in different countries. I may try an ultra like a 100 miler just explore different things I haven’t before.

Anything else you want to share?

I’m just excited for one more round of Kona! I don’t know how fast I’m gonna run at the State Champs since I don’t want to re-injure myself, but I'll at least swim and bike, and we’ll see what I can do on the run.


Related Posts



B.J. Christenson's Kona Race Report: THE LEGEND GROWS

Utah Triathlon Championship Series



We started a Patreon account (link below) with the hope of raising few bucks towards awards & swag for athletes of all abilities in our tri community. We've given out a lot over the past 2 years, but would like to continue to expand our offerings & the volume we can do.

If you enjoy Utah Tri Buzz and would like to pitch in, any amount would be greatly appreciated... (there may be something in it for you as well!)

We're also always grateful for talented people who contribute in terms of time... let us know if you'd like to be part of the Utah Tri Buzz team.



Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Utah Age Group Rankings 2018 - MEN ROUND 2


With Jordanelle now behind us, it’s time for Round 2 of the Utah Tri Buzz 2018 age group rankings!

The same things we said in the women's rankings apply to the men as well -- we stand & applaud everyone on the list. Regardless of individual rank, these are all people who have gotten out to race and who support the local scene.

Think about it, how many people stayed in bed while you were out testing your limits?? 
How many others are active, yet too chicken to ever toe a start line??

Kudos to everyone in the rankings... you're strong in both body & mind!

Lastly, keep in mind this is for FUN... please don't take the rankings too seriously.



The methodology is simple:

* To be eligible for Round 2 Rankings, must have raced at least 2 of the 9 events on the Utah Triathlon Championship Series calendar to date.




* Rankings will be updated once more following Kokopelli & Brineman. Keep in mind that a minimum of 3 races are required for the final rankings & season awards.


Round 1 (Jun): 2 race minimum
Round 2 (Aug): 2 race minimum
Round 3 (end of season): 3 race minimum (average of your top 3 races)


* The final rankings will be the basis for several “Most Improved” and other awards, not just awards for AG winners/podiums. (if you'd like to be a part of this effort, please see our message at the bottom of this post)

* Like last year, we take the AVERAGE of everyone’s top 3 series races for the final rankings… this provides some incentive to get out and race often, as you can only help yourself by racing more. For example, if you have an off day, or even a dreaded DNF, that result will shake out of your top 3 average if you race 4+ times.

* We use your Overall % to calculate the rankings (which is shown in all the individual race “Results Breakdowns” we post). This is simply how you placed vs. the field - if you placed 60th out of 100 at a race, that’s 60%. If you placed 80th out of 200 at another, that’s 40%. In this case those two then average to 50%.

Your 50% average would then be stacked up to the rest of your age group for the rankings.


ROUND 2 RANKINGS













Related Posts


We started a Patreon account (link below) with the hope of raising few bucks towards awards & swag for athletes of all abilities in our tri community. We've given out a lot over the past 2 years, but would like to continue to expand our offerings & the volume we can do.

If you enjoy Utah Tri Buzz and would like to pitch in, any amount would be greatly appreciated... (there may be something in it for you as well!)

We're also always grateful for talented people who contribute in terms of time... let us know if you'd like to be part of the Utah Tri Buzz team.



Monday, August 20, 2018

Utah Age Group Rankings 2018 - WOMEN ROUND 2


With Jordanelle now behind us, it’s time for Round 2 of the Utah Tri Buzz 2018 age group rankings!

We stand & applaud everyone on the list. Regardless of individual rank, these are all people who have gotten out to race and who support the local scene.

Think about it, how many people stayed in bed while you were out testing your limits?? 
How many others are active, yet too chicken to ever toe a start line??

Kudos to everyone in the rankings... you're strong in both body & mind!

Lastly, keep in mind this is for FUN... please don't take the rankings too seriously.



The methodology is simple:

* To be eligible for Round 2 Rankings, must have raced at least 2 of the 9 events on the Utah Triathlon Championship Series calendar to date.




* Rankings will be updated once more following Kokopelli & Brineman. Keep in mind that a minimum of 3 races are required for the final rankings & season awards.

Round 1 (Jun): 2 race minimum
Round 2 (Aug): 2 race minimum
Round 3 (end of season): 3 race minimum (average of your top 3 races)




* The final rankings will be the basis for several “Most Improved” and other awards, not just awards for AG winners/podiums. (if you'd like to be a part of this effort, please see our message at the bottom of this post)

* Like last year, we take the AVERAGE of everyone’s top 3 series races for the final rankings… this provides some incentive to get out and race often, as you can only help yourself by racing more. For example, if you have an off day, or even a dreaded DNF, that result will shake out of your top 3 average if you race 4+ times.

* We use your Overall % to calculate the rankings (which is shown in all the individual race “Results Breakdowns” we post). This is simply how you placed vs. the field - if you placed 60th out of 100 at a race, that’s 60%. If you placed 80th out of 200 at another, that’s 40%. In this case those two then average to 50%.

Your 50% average would then be stacked up to the rest of your age group for the rankings.



ROUND 2 RANKINGS


 








Related Posts


We started a Patreon account (link below) with the hope of raising few bucks towards awards & swag for athletes of all abilities in our tri community. We've given out a lot over the past 2 years, but would like to continue to expand our offerings & the volume we can do.

If you enjoy Utah Tri Buzz and would like to pitch in, any amount would be greatly appreciated... (there may be something in it for you as well!)

We're also always grateful for talented people who contribute in terms of time... let us know if you'd like to be part of the Utah Tri Buzz team.


Sunday, August 19, 2018

Results Breakdown: Jordanelle 2018


Congrats all!

Below is the results breakdown for TriUtah's Jordanelle, race #9 of the Utah Triathlon Championship Series, and this post explains what this is if you need a refresher.

In general we hope you'll get out and support the local race scene, and let's continue making 2018 an awesome season.

PS - Round 2 of the Utah Tri Buzz 2018 Age Group Rankings will be calculated in the next couple days, and keep in mind that all are welcome at the 2018 State Champs race (Brineman Olympic - Sep 8)!



Jordanelle Sprint

















Jordanelle Olympic










We started a Patreon account (link below) with the hope of raising few bucks towards awards & swag for athletes of all abilities in our tri community. We've given out a lot over the past 2 years, but would like to continue to expand our offerings & the volume we can do.

If you enjoy Utah Tri Buzz and would like to pitch in, any amount would be greatly appreciated... (there may be something in it for you as well!)

We're also always grateful for talented people who contribute in terms of time... let us know if you'd like to be part of the Utah Tri Buzz team.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Prelim Start List: Jordanelle


Below is a preliminary look at the start list for Jordanelle (August 18th)voted in the Top 10 in the PEOPLE'S VOTE a couple seasons ago and a Utah classic. Still another few days if you want to join the party... register here!



PS - Round 2 of the Utah Tri Buzz 2018 Age Group Rankings will be calculated following Jordanelle, and keep in mind that all are welcome at the 2018 State Champs race (Brineman Olympic - Sep 8)!






















Related Posts





“It is not the critic who counts; not the wo/man who points out how the strong wo/man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the wo/man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends her/himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if s/he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that her/his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” - Theodore Roosevelt




We started a Patreon account (link below) with the hope of raising few bucks towards awards & swag for athletes of all abilities in our tri community. We've given out a lot over the past 2 years, but would like to continue to expand our offerings & the volume we can do.

If you enjoy Utah Tri Buzz and would like to pitch in, any amount would be greatly appreciated... (there may be something in it for you as well!)

We're also always grateful for talented people who contribute in terms of time... let us know if you'd like to be part of the Utah Tri Buzz team.