We first met Betsy when she joined our Intro to Tri talk. We had a blast being part of her first triathlon journey. Here is a little bit more about Betsy!

Tell us a bit about yourself. Family? Career? Where do you live?

I have been happily married to a wonderful man for 18 years. I stay home and homeschool our 5 children ranging in age from 6-17. Baby #6 coming in February! We live in central Illinois.

How did you get into cycling?

It always looked like fun to me, but I never took the time to get into it. My husband surprised me with a Trek road bike for Christmas (he took advice from our cycling friends).

How did you get into triathlon?

I was going through another round of physical therapy for chronic pain caused by my autoimmune disease, Ankylosing Spondylitis. My PT and Chiropractor encouraged me to make exercise a priority in attempt to have better pain management. After I came home from a PT session, I read in our local newspaper about an upcoming Triathlon. I thought working toward a goal would be great motivation.

Tell us about your first triathlon.

I was so excited! Honestly, crossing off all of the training sessions from my calendar felt just as good as crossing the finish line. I couldn’t believe how far I’d come or how good I felt. My newbie mistake was forgetting to pull my goggles down before I jumped in the water.

How did you balance training and your family?

My amazing husband. He was happy that I was making my health and pain management a priority. He is amazing to keep the kids under control while I am training, he loads my bike, spots me at the gym, etc. After watching me race at the triathlon, my boys (age 11 & 14) said they would like to try competing in Triathlon also!

What has it been like working out while pregnant?

Amazing. I was not educated by my health care providers during my previous pregnancies, and nobody told me that exercising would actually manage pain and give me more energy. I’m 28 weeks pregnant and just had a new deadlift PR yesterday!

Any tips to expecting mothers that want to workout?

Do it! Even something as simple and safe as walking everyday makes a big difference. Listen to your body. Push forward when it feels good, back off or take a rest when needed.

Any future goals with cycling or triathlon?

I am planning to get back into triathlon training next year after the baby is born and I get the green light from my physical therapist. Hoping to race again by the end of the summer!
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