You many not recognize Michelle by her name, but she is the mom behind This Momma Runs. Michelle is a wife and proud mother of 4 daughters under the age of 11! We don’t know how she does it, but she amazes us every day with her determination to stay actively involved in triathlon while raising her family.
One way that she is able to continue her training is to plan her workout schedule. She sets aside two time slots a day that she can train – early in the morning from 4:00 – 6:00 am or late in the evening from 8:30 pm to 10:00 pm. Giving herself two options both early and late in the day allows her time with her family and gives her much flexibility if she can’t make one or the other. Luckily, she has daughters who enjoy accompanying her on their bikes while she runs!
Michelle hasn’t always been involved in triathlon. In fact, not long ago, she couldn’t even swim! When her daughter, Julia competed in her first triathlon at the age of 9, Michelle was inspired to attempt this sport as well. She signed up for swim lessons and finally learned to swim. Six months after taking lessons, she crossed the finish line of her first triathlon.
When asked what advice she could offer to new triathletes, she said, “You need to put the time in.” This advice is something that Michelle had to learn for herself. As a marathoner and ultra-marathoner by nature, Michelle knows that focusing on the swim and bike portions of triathlon are important to her training. She has to spend extra time in those two disciplines in order to continue to grow stronger in them. She also advises new triathletes to not neglect the importance of practicing swimming not just in a pool, but in open water.
After throwing up twice in the water, pushing up hills on the bike course and running in 90 plus degree weather, Michelle completed her first Ironman 70.3 recently. She said it was the most challenging event she has ever competed in, but it was also one her proudest moments as an athlete.
Though she doesn’t have any specific pre-race rituals, she does like to go out to the lake the day before her race and dip her toes in the water. It reminds her of how far she has come in the last two years. She also has her family write their names on her feet before each race. This way while she waiting for the swim portion to start she can look down and see that they are with her and support her.
Being from Chicago, her favorite post-race food is deep dish pizza! And, Michelle we think you definitely deserve it!
We are thrilled to have Michelle on our team and love that she inspires and reaching other women through her journey.
You can follow her on social media as This Momma Runs:
Continuing our blog series on our amazing ambassadors, this month’s Tribe Ambassador of the Month is Michelle Collette Niemeyer.