Gollnick's LifeSport Debut a Success
Heather Gollnick's win in Pucon last weekend was part of a successful weekend for LifeSport Coaching, Kevin Mackinnon reports.
Published Thursday, January 22, 2009
Last Sunday's Cristal Ironman 70.3 Pucon saw two LifeSport athletes battle for the title, with new professional team member Heather Gollnick getting to the line just 24 seconds ahead of teammate Linsey Corbin.
After the race, LifeSport coach Paul Regensburg was thrilled with the result.
"What a great way to start the relationship. Heather was just here for our professional camp and it was apparent that she has the work ethic and mentality of a champion. She is a great role model for our developing professionals and age group athletes alike. She has already responded very well to the coaching and I am excited to work with Heather on her journey to Hawaii."
Gollnick, seen here winning Ford Ironman Louisville in 2007, decided to start working with LifeSport, the official coaches of Ironman, in December.
“I needed a bit of a change and this seemed like the perfect fit,” Gollnick says. “I've always been my own coach, and I got good at reading my own body, but Paul seems to be very good about helping me to recover more. I just go, go, go.”
“She is a work horse and loves to train and work out and still balances a family with all that,” Regensburg says. “It's been a great relationship even in the early stages, because I'm trying to introduce some quality to her program. With someone with her experience and success, I'd be crazy to turn her world upside down, so we're just making some little changes to what she's done in the past.”
Gollnick spent a week in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, where LifeSport is based, and Regensburg took the chance to do some extensive testing. It didn't take long before he realized that the five-time Ironman champion will serve as a tremendous role model for the other athletes in the LifeSport program.
“She's so good for the athletes we coach,” Regensburg says. "Many of the younger athletes were amazed to see how tough she is. She's like the big sister of the group right now.”
That sense of camaraderie was apparent in Pucon last weekend.
“Linsey once looked up to her as a role model, now they're racing head to head,” Regensburg says. “The kind of team we're trying to build – everyone working to make themselves better.”
In addition to juggling her busy professional triathlon career, Gollnick also runs her own coaching business and has taken on the position of marketing director for the Revolution 3 Triathlon that will take place in Connecticut this June. Then there's life as a mother of three busy children, too.
“Paul has the rest of his athletes take naps every day,” Gollnick says. “He hasn't got me to that point yet, but I am starting to at least put my feet up when I'm on the phone.”
Even that bit of rest is obviously paying off for Gollnick, who improved her winning time in Pucon by almost nine minutes.
“Our focus now is a top-10 finish in Hawaii,” Regensburg says. Last weekend's season opener certainly bodes well for that goal.
You can reach Kevin Mackinnon at email@example.com