Kelly Handel Williamson
Hometown: Zionsville, Indiana
Residence: Austin, Texas
Personal Blog: http://kellyhandel.blogspot.com
Personal Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/#!/profile.php?id=609901757
Twitter Account: http://twitter.com/khwilliamson
San Juan 70.3 2011 - 1st (4:15)
Buffalo Springs 70.3 2011 - 1st (4:26)
Branson 70.3 2010 - 1st (4:25)
Ironnman Texas 2011 - 2nd (9:07)
Ironman Coeur d'Alene 2010 - 3rd (9:39) *First Ironman*
Personal Bio: I live in Austin, TX with my husband Derick, our Australian cattle dog Amico and our large 24 lb cat, Corgi (but he is on a diet). I have been racing professionally since 2002 when I did ITU, but have since switched over to non-drafting and longer racing. 2010 was my first stint with Ironman, and while I still think it is a bit insane, I enjoy the new challenge of it. My favorite distance to race is 70.3. We also have a coaching business called Durata Training, and we coach endurance athletes (cyclists, runners, triathletes).
5 things we should know about you:
1- I love music and have an affinity towards singer/songwriters
2- In 2005 I compound/double fractured my left arm and I still have two plates in it; I saw both bones poking through my arm when I crashed my bike
3- I LOVE good microbrews and end most days with one
4- We (Derick & I) got married in 2008 in Story, Indiana in an outside wedding in the back of a barn and I was barefoot for the entire 9 hours of it
5- I love when the cards are stacked against me!
How did you first get into triathlons?
I did my first triathlon right after finishing my collegiate swimming career, the summer of 2000. It was a sprint triathlon in Indianapolis. I started them because I loved running and I had gotten an IT Band injury from running, so I started spinning on an indoor bike. When summer came, I got tired of being indoors so got a road bike. Since I had a road bike, was a swimmer and enjoyed running, I figured why not do a triathlon?
What was the first race you ever participated in and what place did you finish?
The Alcatraz Brewing Company (fitting) Indianapolis Sprint Triathlon in 2000, where I won my age group.
What is your favorite race?
As insane as it sounds, I really like Buffalo Springs 70.3. I have done it 4 or 5 times now and I believe I have been 8th, 5th, 4th, 2nd and finally 1st this year (2011). It is always hard; the weather always sucks (windy, hot or cool and rainy it seems) but it is a good honest course and it has a grassroots feel to it. I think it has a lot of character!
What is your favorite workout?
I love long steady swims, say a set of 3K straight or a long open water swim; or anything in a long course pool.
On the bike, I love to climb; so anything hilly makes me happy.
Running, I like to do mile intervals/repeats on the trail here in Austin.
What are your favorite Zoot products and why?
Pulse Capri - Comfortable and I can wear them working out or just casually
Ultra Run Racerback - Super comfortable, flattering and can be worn for a hard run workout, run race or post workout.
Ultra Kane shoe - Supportive enough for a long run but still light and comfortable; great new product
Race Travel Bag - It is seriously the perfect bag! You can get a ton in there but when you open it up, you can see and access it all. Brilliant.
CompressorRX Socks - Breathable and keeps down puffy legs post race, post workout and in travel.
What is your proudest accomplishment?
It was probably finishing Ironman Coeur d'Alene in 2010, my first full Ironman, where I finished 3rd in a 9:39. Having been racing for so long and having started with ITU, I had no idea if this was something I could tackle; and given my glaring weakness on the bike, I knew that being able to get through 112 miles and then run a decent marathon would be tough. It showed me that despite so many years of racing triathlon, I had found a new and different challenge that I was actually decent at... Ironman racing. I love finding new challenges and then having to 'figure them out'.
What motivates you?
The unknown of what I am capable of. We can say 'anything is possible' but it is entirely something different to try to go out and experience that. I love when the cards are stacked against me and the only place to go is 'up'. Even though I think Ironman is a bit crazy, I like it because it is a relatively new challenge. I also like when nobody expects me to win and people talk like I am not a favorite, or that they don't expect me to be a factor; that gets me really fired up.
What is your pre-race meal?
I don't have a specific meal the night before a race, but it is often either pasta with chicken and veggies or pizza and usually a salad. Simple, something I am familiar with. I love to have a Peroni the night before but any light beer will do. The morning of the race, I always have a bagel with peanut butter and jam, banana and coffee; pretty boring!
What is your pre-race ritual?
I don't really have many other than I like to eat dinner ridiculously early; the earlier the start time, the earlier I eat. I make old people look cool. I'll go at 4:30 if I can! I struggle to eat the morning of the race because I am usually not hungry, and I like to get in a good solid meal the night before.
What is in your triathlon bag that you cannot live without?
Comfy Zoot clothes to change into post race, including my Recovery Flops!
What are your goals for the 2011 season?
Oh, I hate this question! I like to keep my goals tucked inside my little head. But, since you asked.. I want to win races! In all honesty that is my goal in any race I enter; to at least try to win it. I love to compete, and even when it is not an 'A' race, I always race to win. Having done a 9:07 at Ironman Texas, I feel like I have already exceeded some of my expectations; but given this, I would love to be able to go to Hawaii and manage a Top 5 finish. I know it is lofty, but I figure aiming high will only make you that much better.
Any other information you would like included on your page:
I really want to be able to do something bigger with my success' in this sport. I have been doing it for a long time, and I love it; but I also want to be able to give back to something that is important to me. Currently, I am raising money for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society; my Aunt Sandy has had MS for ~35 years, and she is an inspiration to me in how she lives her life. MS is tough because so many live with it, often for many years, and it manifests in so many various ways; and there is no cure. Please consider going to my website, kellyhwilliamson.com, and donate what you can to a very important cause. Thank you~!
Events you are racing in this season:
Ironman 70.3 Muncle (July 9), Rohto Ironman 70.3 Boulder (August 7), Ironman World Championship 70.3- Las Vegas (September 11), Ironman 70.3 Branson (September 18), Ford Ironman World Championship (October 8)
*Vegas World Champs Sept 11th Tentative*
*ITU Long Distance Worlds on Nov 5th - Upon Acceptance*
Previously this year:
San Juan 70.3
Buffalo Springs 70.3