Monday, February 11, 2008

My afternoon with a pro...

Imagine you could spend an afternoon with a "real-live professional" triathlete. You get to have a one-on-one swim lesson and swim with all the help you need and then you get a chat at Jamba Juice and the "pro" buys!

That was my yesterday afternoon! Believe me, I felt like a dorky high school girl that could hardly speak and was all butterfly filled... and I forgot to get his autograph!

Here is my afternoon:

I met up with TJ (Tollakson) at the Kailua pier at 2pm. Straight away I had to stop starring and focus... He is so muscle-y! Instantly I felt like I had known him forever (or at least a long time). He got right to work on showing me my old stroke and causes of why I swim like that. Then he helps me out with a drill to correct it and it makes so much sense! On land we practice that and work on some technique things for a higher elbow position.

Then time for a swim. TJ says we will warm up to the Coast Guard buoy (roughly 1200 yards away), nice and easy, then do some skills for drafting and speed that he thinks will really work for me.

Warm up! Are you kidding me?! It wasn't a sprint but I know I wasn't cruising... he asked if that was easy, I told him usually when I warm up I see the fish, look at the coral, listen for whales and NONE of that took place! I was too focused on keeping up that I had zero time to watch the fish! After I catch my breath we get ready for some draft drills...

I should have cut my finger nails for this and thank God I shaved my legs! The workout was 30 strokes he lead, 30 strokes I lead, and I had to incorporate this "shorting" drill he taught me. Oh man it works! I could fairly easy keep up with him when "shorting"! It was so much fun, you really can draft and get pulled along! Poor TJ though I must have sliced him 1,000 times with my finger nails because he had some scratches on his shoulders after that one!

Then on to this hip cross over thing. I loved it! I am surely going to use it this season in racing! I hope none of my blog buddies are ever lined up next to me in an open-water swim because it might tick you off if I do it to you... But I LOVE it! (That was when I was happy I shaved my legs). I am telling you, it was awesome! It makes open water swimming so much fun!

So after the 30/30 we cool down and I am so impressed that TJ is so natural and strong in the water. He is amazing to watch! It looks like a mermaid or something... I think people that swim like that are like art!

Next up... 30 questions with TJ! We hit Jamba Juice (after he makes fun of me... thinking I don't drink Jamba or something because of my whole-foods eating life style). BUT I tell him I am the Jamba Queen and that they do have ALL FRUIT and STRAIGHT up carrot juice! I tried to tell him to stay away from low-cal dairy base (what is "dairy base" anyway? It's not milk). Oh, he paid too! (Thanks again TJ).

Now this was fun! I got to pick TJ's brain about everything from racing, training, Brett Sutton, bikes, pacing, ITU, drafting, Ironman, nutrition, sponsors, coaching, swim suits, fast skins, swimming, athletes, travel... pretty much all the things you might ever wonder about and curious about I got to find out about! Nothing left unanswered!

Truly the day was a blast for me. I was so impressed by how down-to-Earth TJ is and how much fun it was to hang out with a real-live-pro triathlete! & single ladies, he is taken & she is a beautiful girl too!

Now about that autograph... I will get it tomorrow BECAUSE Kainoa and I are driving him to the airport!


Blogger Kellye Mills said...

What a cool afternoon!

And you know YOU are a pro and people like me will be star-struck to meet YOU! :)

Sounds like a great swim! I'm glad you had fun.

And... she must be a lucky lady! He's a cutie!

February 11, 2008 at 1:08 PM

Blogger Katie Weaver-Jongerius said...

It sounds like you had an awesome day! I agree with Kellye tho...soon people are going to be heading to Hawaii just to do some training in hopes to get a little training in with Bree Wee!!!

February 11, 2008 at 1:13 PM

Blogger Katie Weaver-Jongerius said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

February 11, 2008 at 1:14 PM

Blogger Beth said...

What a treat!! But he got a treat too hanging out with you! :) The open water swimming drills and practice sounds great - luckily I won't be lining up next to you in any races or I'd be afraid! :)

February 11, 2008 at 1:57 PM

Blogger Eileen Swanson said...

will you still let me 'try' to draft, seriously try is the key word. hope we still have our sss plan in line ;-)


February 11, 2008 at 3:35 PM

Blogger Mel said...

Ok Bree...what is your connection of getting to train with all these great guys....Are you making them some Wee bread on the side???

February 11, 2008 at 3:41 PM

Blogger BreeWee said...

Mel I am laughing so hard! You always make me laugh and smile! No Wee bread on the side even though TJ is a cutie...
I think he is just super down to Earth so he was stoked to train with a local. A lot of cool pros come train here and they love training with the locals... I try my best to never miss those opportunities!

February 11, 2008 at 4:20 PM

Blogger stageracer said...

don't sell yourself short're one of those exceptional pro's and pretty damn hot yourself....

February 11, 2008 at 4:58 PM

Blogger Marit Chrislock-Lauterbach said...

Nice job!!!
So cool that you watch the fish and listen for whales... what about the sharks?!?

Your drills sound most excellent. What a neat concept on "duo drafting" on the swim. Totally cool.

Loved Mel and Beth's comments! Ha ha h!

February 11, 2008 at 6:44 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can I get some Wee bread or Kona Koffee Balls???
I will line up next to you in the water anyday....hip thing? Dude, at least you can swim in a straigter line these days. Before you were like a wandering flounder searching for buoys!
After I'm done getting rat scratched by you can i have your autograph? Just sign my cast...!!

February 11, 2008 at 7:31 PM

Blogger greyhound said...

What a great day. If it wouldn't be giving away the state secrets, you ought to post some more details or illustrations of the drills and techniques.

February 12, 2008 at 3:00 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bree! How great..I had a 'moment' where I was not in my winter jacket, fleece PJs and a hat on (in my house!)...and I was in the ocean w/ you and TJ swimming in Kona. And, then I remembered..this is her blog, damn! Glad you got some quality time w/ TJ - sounds great! Jen H.

February 12, 2008 at 3:59 AM

Anonymous Ness said...

TJ is probably over on his blog site writing: "OMG! I got to hang out with BREE WEE!!! It was totally crazy, I was so nervous. I'm so glad I shaved my legs! She even let me PAY FOR HER JAMBA JUICE! I am so excited I can't believe it really happened - I. saw. bree. wee. in .person!!!"

February 12, 2008 at 4:11 AM

Blogger Jen in Budapest said...

Wow Bree - so cool just to hear about your swim and the time for Q and A. Good stuff. I agree with your awesome friends who wrote that you're a pro too and people love hearing from you (and if I had the chance, swimming with ya too!) Love Ness's comments...I echo them.

February 14, 2008 at 2:17 AM


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