Tuesday, December 6, 2016

The X Man: Interview with Xavier Lucio

Get to know Xavier Lucio, a family man and Ironman who's a major force to be reckoned with on our local scene.

Thanks for the time, Xavier!

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

I played soccer since I could walk. This was my sport! I played on competitive leagues growing up. Then played 4 years varsity in high school and then on through college. I was even able to play semiprofessionally. However, I was an all-athlete type of guy. I ran cross country, participated in the track team, played some high school football in Texas, and even played a little basketball through junior high school.

When I finally got into graduate school, I saw this triathlon race on tv late one night while I was getting some assignments done. I thought to myself, I can do that. So, years later after I finished graduate school and finally got the family life settled, I hung up my soccer boots and started my triathlete journey.

My first race was in Provo at which time the swim was cancelled because of lightning. Then I did the Labor Day tri up in Bountiful and that was my first full test to see what I had. It was a life learning lesson trying to get from the start gate of this sport to where I have come this far. Along the way I have made some great friendships!!!

How would you summarize your 2016 season, and what was the highlight and lowlight?

2016 started great in the off season and then somehow I overstrained and took a long time to recover. St. George 70.3 weather was brutal. And some of the smaller races I did didn't turn out time wise what I projected but it all turned around when I competed CDA 70.3. I finally found my groove and then built from there. My greatest accomplishment was completing my first full triathlon at CDA. It was an experience I will never forget. Although I'd like to qualify for Kona, this will have to wait for another time as the requirements for training at this distance takes too much time away from family. I was able to learn a lot from the 2016 season and look forward to the 2017 season.

CDA 70.3
You have a reputation of being a guy who leaves it all out there on race day and who loves to compete. Who are some of your “friendly rivals” on the local scene?

Everyone is a rival. When I get on the race field it's like "war". I want to win no matter what age division you're in. I always jokingly say to my family after a race that they compliment me on, "if you're not first, you're last". They know I'm joking though.

St. George

Looking at our results database, you took a big step up in 2015, beginning with a monster performance at St. George 70.3 that year (4:52!). What changes did you make to your training, etc. to see the improvements you have over the past couple years?

I got myself a coach. Rory has done a great job getting me where I'm at today. It's been a process also with getting to know the different training and race strategies that have given me an edge over the competition.

"I got your edge right here"

Maybe related question to above… how has SLTC helped with your progression in the sport?

SLTC has been great. All the group training and friendly competitions have helped get my training on track. I would never have been able to compete at the full ironman distance without their help and support.

Speaking of St. George, this year you threw down a 2:30, top 3% bike (top 1% excluding the pro field), and then followed it with a 1:43 (top 10% excluding pros). What advice would you give to people who will be tackling that course for the first time in 2017?

Study the course well. Don't get caught up on the race field competitors. You don't want to go all out just to learn that this course will beat you down with all the elevation that is involved. Get prepared for the bike and run with lots of race simulation distance and elevation. Kickr lab is a great way to get prepared for the bike.

What are your racing plans and goals for next season?

I'm trying to qualify for 70.3 world championship. I will probably compete this year at the Olympic championships in Nebraska since I keep qualifying but never go. I'll be doing some local races to prep for the "A"races.

You’ve raced a lot on the local scene over the past few years, which is awesome. What’s your podium for favorite races and why?

RaceTri throws down a great 70.3 race (Toughman Utah Half) which I like to do every year. TriUtah also does great with Echo which is an awesome Olympic distance. I also like the early races in the year like Icebreaker and Ghost Town but have a hard time with the cold weather. St. George 70.3 is a must for all the local Utah triathletes.


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