Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Kona Profiles: Sound Spanking From Marc Rosello

The Ironman World Championships ("Kona") is this Saturday, Oct. 8th! We're running out of time, but hoping to get one more Kona Profile in before the big dance... in the meantime, check out this funny & insightful interview with Mr. Marc Rosello.

Good luck Marc, we'll be cheering you on man!!

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

I played College Football, Baseball and Golf, so after graduate school, I moved to Utah in 1997 and found mountainbiking. Racing filled that competitive bug and it was fun! I learned tons about training by heart rate, racing at altitude, and having quality equipment. I grew up in Florida, so I could swim, and I always wanted to "tri", so the off-road Yuba Tri was my first in 1999 or 2000. I made all the newbie mistakes, but learned really quickly and was hooked.

Have you been to Kona before? Regardless, how are you feeling only days out?

I raced Kona in 2012 and 2013. Awesome. Complete dehydration in 12, and GI distress in 13, but loved it. I quickly learned that I could't have the same nutrition strategy in Kona, as I was successful with racing at other climates and altitude. I am feeling prepared and healthy this year, so that is a blessing. Just getting to the start line is a huge accomplishment, and cannot be overlooked. BJ Christenson crashed just a few days ago and broke his scapula, again. I feel terrible for him, knowing the timing of it just sucks. I think he still has a chance of starting the race, cause he is a competitor. If he can finish, it may be his greatest accomplishment to date!

You’re always near the top of the leaderboard, but where would your 9:55 and 9th overall at Tahoe rank among your best races ever? (as a reference, B.J. was 5th in 9:49, Rory 13th in 10:01, Sebe Ziesler 10:02, Brice Williams 10:13 and Luke Rothey 10:14) Did you go in thinking you could win your AG and qualify?

Tahoe was a great race for me, no doubt. I would say it is #2 for me. I did not have intentions of winning my AG by any means, but I thought I was in good enough shape to compete for a slot. I was old in my AG (44 in 40-44), and just wanted to put a full race together. My #1 race was when I qualified for the first time at Arizona in 2011. I was racing with the great Brett Wilking. He is a great friend and teammate of mine, (who I punish on the golf course) but he beats me almost every time racing tri. He didn't have his best race, but I went 9:31 to his 9:28. We both were on the podium (40-44 for me and B-Dub was 35-39) and I punched my first ticket. Awesome. #3 for me was Whistler in 2013.

Did you know you had moved to 1st in your AG off the bike? Were you running scared or relatively calm knowing M4044 would receive a few slots?

I was running well, but soon realized I didn't feel as great as I did at IM Arizona or IM Whistler. But I stayed in the game and got two pieces of great advice from friends that I have ever received. At mile 5, BJ Christenson passed me and said "No PRs today Marc, just get it to the house". So I thought if the course was hurting BJ, it was hurting everybody! I received more confirmation from Collin, a Salt Lake Running Company employee and one of my sponsors, who confirmed my placement about 18-19 miles into the marathon for the 2nd time. I told him I wasn't feeling great, but thought I may be able to hold on for a slot. He told me "You look great!" and "You should see what those other guys look like". That's all I needed!

You texted me, and I quote, “Been chased by a bear at IM Whistler, so your ‘hot seat’ is as cool as the other side of the pillow!” Were you referring to Luke Rothey, or did that really happen? What other IM’s have you done?

Hah! Are you referring to Luke's back hair? Just kidding Luke. Whistler was the "Bear Race". I was having a great day, with no expectations at all. I was running well at mile 7 or 8, when I spotted a black bear "cub" crossing the closed road above me to my right. I saw a cyclist stop and another veer around the bear. I thought if this bear keeps running across the road, our paths will intersect. I moved to the left side of the trail and when I came by, I looked up into the high grass and saw this HUGE black bear looking down at me. 

I saw his teeth and lips moving, his eyes staring at me. Needless to say it was a great heart rate "bump" and my pace quickened. I warned the runners ahead of me and just kept going. A photo was taken moments after when the bear crossed the trail 20 yards behind me. I ended up finishing 10th, and there were 14 slots in my AG. I came home to a few phone interviews and Fox 13 ended up coming to the house. So, I had my 10 minutes of fame!

I have completed 9 IMs; CDA in 2008, 2010, 2011 and 2012, IM Arizona in 2011, Kona in 2012 and 2013, Whistler in 2013 and Tahoe 2015. This year, Kona will be #10. I have Arizona 2016 on the schedule again, 6 weeks after Kona. Never done that before, so the recovery/build/taper will be interesting.

Don’t you dare be modest and/or politically correct with us… what’s your prediction for the men’s women’s “Utah podiums” at Kona?

Well, I know better than trying to predict that race. My first year I raced with my friend Brett and the great Ali Black. We had a friendly bet between us, as I play golf and love to "make things interesting". I passed Ali in T-1, and Brett after the turnaround at Hawi. Long story short, I ended up carrying Brett's golf bag for 18 holes and painting my toenails orange! One prediction I will get right, is it will be hot, windy and humid out there. Everyone who qualified is talented, motivated and experienced in different ways. I know BJ would have been the safe bet, but I rode 107 miles with Jorge De Amorim Filho (AKA Doctor Delicious) and saw how he killed CDA. So Jorge, don't race scared, but you are my pick to bring home the Utah Kona crown!

Look, you’re far from an “old guy,” but you’re not Evan Santo or one of the other local kids either… what’s your secret to giving triathletes 1-2 decades younger than you a sound spanking on race day?

Young triathlete after a race: "what the hell was that?!?"
Marc Rosello: "I... had to do that"

try this link if below not working

Hah! I love to compete. Doesn't matter if its an IM, golf or ping pong. But there is no secret. You have to put the work in day after day, year after year. I like to think I am consistent in my training, but also flexible. It has to be fun. You have to have balance in your life. I skate ski in the winter and take 2-3 months to lift and address any strength issues. Also, I got great coaching advice early in my IM racing (swim analysis, bike fitting, and a run analysis) that helps me avoid injuries. Now don't get me wrong, I have had my fair share of injuries, but if you don't really know why you are injured, you are doomed to repeat it. And you have to adjust training volumes/intensities as you get older. OK, so there are my secrets!

Coach or self-coached?

I am mostly self coached, but I can't do it all on my own. Aaron and Cherell Jordin run BraveHeart Coaching Salt Lake, and are great friends. They have motivated me and provided me with a lot of training plans and advice over the years. I owe a lot of my success to them. Brett Wilking motivated me to try and qualify for the Kona years ago, and he is always there to tell me I swim and run too slow :) Once in a while he actually gives me advice I can use, but I respect his opinion. As I mentioned earlier, I got great advice from a coach, Marcel Vifian, when I first attempted to challenge the IM distance. I still follow some of the same swim workouts and techniques, I have the same bike fit (Max Testa), and still alternate different running shoes (Trail, Track and Long runs) as I learned from him. Spend the money, do your homework, and get a coach.

You’ve been as consistent as running water at SG 70.3: 4:51, 4:51, 4:56, & 4:52 this year… what advice would you give to best manage that tough bike/run brick?

Again, no secrets. You have to put in the time. No specific workout will allow you to be successful, done a only few times. You have to have a solid base, practice the brick, and know your bike fitness. Also, you cannot race that bike course too hard and expect to run. You have to use heart rate and wattage measurements, and stick to your specific race plan. If you don't know what I am talking about, get a coach!

You were top 5% at SG, 3% at the Utah Half, and won the inaugural Brineman Half… these results have earned you the Utah Tri Buzz M4549 #1 ranking for 2016. How honored would you say you are with this accomplishment?  ;)

Very honored and humbled. I am lucky to be healthy, racing and having fun. To win was icing on the cake and confirmation that my training was on track. Brineman was a great venue and well run! Riding through Antelope Island was cool (I hadn't done that since racing road bikes 5 years ago) and I can say that was the "Buffalo Race". Yeh, came very close to hitting a HUGE buffalo. Ask Andrew Stasinos. He was driving the lead van, just behind me, and had to pull up to shield me. It was bigger than the van!

Anything else you want to share?

Can I thank my wife? Because without her support and patience, racing at this level would be impossible! Also, The Dodo Restaurant and the Salt Running Company have been great sponsors for our team, but our Dodo Triathlon team wouldn't be possible without the support of Chad Burt, DDS. He is a great friend and was the driving force behind our Dodo Triathlon team.

"Kona... will... host... annual... Ironman World Championships!"
"Well come on, Cinderella, we gotta get you ready for the ball!"


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