We’re continuing our series of interviews with members of the Coeur Team who will be racing Ironman Triathlon in Hawaii. Today, we sit down and chat with Amy Farrell.

Amy Farrell Triathlete

Coeur: First, Congratulations on qualifying for Ironman Hawaii! How are you feeling?

Amy: Thank you so much! I'm feeling super excited to get another chance to use what I've learned over the last several years to get it closer to "right" on the Big Island! I can't wait to swim in warm, blue water!

Coeur: You don’t live in a “hot weather” state, so how have been getting ready for the weather on the Big Island?

Amy: I've woken up for a couple of long rides this summer and it's actually been in the 20's! I've spent a lot of hours on the trainer or treadmill sweating like crazy. The temperature went up about 30 degrees over the course of my ride on Sunday and I kept all the layers on (not an easy task). It's not ideal, but I'm doing the best I can!

Picture of temperature in Hawaii

 Coeur: We know you raced 70.3 Worlds and it seems like you’ve had a pretty full schedule this year. Are you doing anything special for your taper?  

Amy: After I qualified at Eagleman July and August were devoted to putting in a solid training for the "Big Dances." I grew up on the Canadian border and it was within driving distance for my parents, so there was no way I was going to pass up the opportunity to race 70.3 Worlds. With the work my teammates and I put in this summer recovery was quick and I was able to put in a few more good, confidence building weeks.

Coeur: As you probably know, at Coeur, we’re huge pet lovers as it appears you are too. Can you tell us about your four legged friends?  

Amy: I'm the crazy dog lady of Tupper Lake! I'm the youngest of 6 kids, so I love the chaos of a big family but only have 1 daughter, Ruby. To make up for this we have 4 dogs, 1 cat and a fish. My dogs are fantastic running buddies. My German Shorthaired Pointer, Freckles, is particularly skilled at long tempo runs. I own a motel right on Main St in Tupper Lake so my pups are great entertainment for people driving through town! My students love seeing me out running with the pack!

Amy's Dogs

Coeur: Of course Kona is the big show in long course triathlon and everyone who is anyone seems to be on the Big Island. We've heard that some athletes like to experience as much of the race as they can and spend a lot of time on Alii and at the expo. Others make a point of staying away from the action so that they don't get distracted. Do you all fall into one camp or another?

Amy: I'm from a tiny town and get overwhelmed by too much action. At the same time I love the energy in and around Kona. I feel like last year I found just the right balance with my family. I've been in and out of triathlon since 2000 so it was great to be back in Kona last year and run into people I hadn't seen in 12 or 13 years!

Coeur: We don't want you to give away any secrets but do you race Kona any differently since it is the World Championships or once the gun goes off is it just another Ironman?

Amy: hmmm the last Ironman I did before Kona 2013 was Ironman Lake Placid in 2002, so my life changed drastically since then. As a mom with a full time job and business I am more adamant about using my time wisely to get it all done. My coach, Julio German, understands this and prepares me well. When I got in the water last year I couldn't wait to start the race and celebrate the hard work with my daughter there. Young Amy would have been a crazy bundle of nerves.

Coeur: Quite a few of us will be out cheering on the course in Kona, so we have to ask. Do you ever hear what people yell to you on the bike and the run or are you concentrating so much on your body that you don't notice? Also, if you do notice, what is the best thing you've heard from a fan during a race?

Amy: I'm pretty aware of what people are cheering, that's why I love my RUBY'S MOM tops. Just hearing her name during a race picks me up. Since I was about 12 years old my father always says, "this is your kind of day Babe, have fun" on race day. I always think of that. Last year my sisters met a family who was writing on the road for their racer and they wrote, DON'T FAIL THE FAMILY on Ali'i and we've really embraced that one!

Coeur: We think that the finish on Alii drive is one of the most magical places in all of sport. What do you think you'll be feeling when you make the turn on to Alii?

Amy: The feeling when you hit Ali'i is like no other. If you look at my splits from last year my last mile was really really fast because I was so excited to get there. I'll think of Ruby and all the sacrifices my family and friends have made for me to get there. I'm certain I'll be very grateful and shed a tear two!

Coeur: For most people, there’s a decent sized break after Kona. Will you take some time off from training as well? If so, do you give yourself a post season reward of any kind?

Amy: I'll take a few weeks to do what I want-trail run with dogs, cross country ski, try and catch up with family and friends. Hopefully a few weeks after I return from Kona ski season will start and Ruby's skiing becomes the focus. We're at the mountain pretty much every day that we don't have school, so I usually send her off with her teammates and coaches and head out for a run before I hit the slopes. My husband is a snowboard instructor so they've pushed me to be a better skier over the last few years and I love it.

Coeur: Well, thank you so much for chatting with us! We’ll see you soon in Kona!

Amy: Yay! I can't wait to meet the Coeur family in person :)

Reginald Holden