Athlete Spotlight - Bekki Schwartz

Athlete Spotlight - OutRival Racing Athlete Bekki Schwarz Coached by Mary Kelly

Questions for Bekki

How long have you been racing? 

I finished my first sprint triathlon in 2010.

What are your goals for this season?  Long Term?

In the first part of the year, I'm working on a 5K run PR. I have a few virtual running races on the calendar, and a virtual sprint duathlon in May. Until now, I've opted for short course events -- but this spring, I finished my first half marathon, and I'm starting to get curious about longer distances. We've got some longer bike rides on the calendar, and my first Olympic planned, tentatively, for the fall. Long term, I'm thinking longer distances.

What is your favorite workout? 

Lately, the long weekend runs. They're a great excuse to get out and explore. 

What brought you to triathlon?  

I was running a few days a week, but I wanted to work towards a bigger goal. I didn't think of myself as an athlete, and I wanted to prove to myself that I could tackle a challenge -- so I found a coach (Mary!) and signed up for my first sprint. 

What did you do in 2020 to keep yourself motivated?

For me, training felt manageable and sustainable when I wasn't aiming for perfection. I'm a music teacher at a public elementary school in NYC. In 2020, as we transitioned to remote learning, and later to hybrid learning, I was working longer hours than ever before. Mary (my coach) has helped me to prioritize key workouts, and I try to nail those key sessions. Beyond that, I do what I can, and I don't worry too much about what I can't. We're flexible, but still strategic, because I've got my eye on the workouts that matter most. My TrainingPeaks is looking very colorful lately -- but it's prettier that way, anyway!

Now especially, if I'm not invested in my training and racing goals, I won't bother trying. So we've been careful to select goals that feel exciting, meaningful, and fun -- some virtual events we invented ourselves (including an indoor Zoom duathlon last summer), and some goals I've been thinking about for a while (this 5K run PR has been on my mind for years).

When did you begin with OutRival Racing?

I began with ORR in spring 2020.

Why did you decide to train with OutRival Racing?

I was already working with Mary (my coach) when she joined the ORR coaching team, so I came along with her. I'm so glad to be a part of the QT2 family. It's been about a year, and already I've had so many opportunities to learn and grow as an athlete -- virtual camps, webinars, and now I've got myself on the Core Diet, too. Looking forward to more!

Who is your coach?

Mary Kelley

What do you like best about working with Mary?

With Mary, I feel comfortable asking questions, trying new things, and making mistakes. She listens to my goals — and kindly, gently, patiently nudges me towards them. I admire her expertise, but more than anything, I've been grateful for her patience and support. With Mary in my corner, I've felt confident reaching for more and more ambitious goals, even in the midst of a difficult year.

Questions for Coach Mary

What do you like most about coaching Bekki?

Bekki has a positive attitude, is eager to learn, works hard and listens to her body.  She’s the best kind of athlete to coach!

What is one thing which stands out most about Bekki?

What stands out most about Bekki was her endless adaptability while being locked down in a tiny NYC apartment for most of 2020.  Bekki found creative ways to keep motivation high (like creating her own virtual challenges), while making the best of a terrible situation.  

Thanks a Lot!

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