Check out what our community is saying!
I just wanted to tell you how much I enjoyed the race a few weeks ago! It was my first sprint triathlon and I definitely plan on doing another in the future!
I did the One Last Tri on Sunday and loved it. You and your team did a great job and the venue was excellent. My father goes to my tri's with me and commented several times on how well everything was run, I could not agree more. Lots of work for you and your team I realize but your athletes certainly appreciate it. Well done and can't wait until next year!
An awesome day! My second sprint! You guys did a great job!
Thank you for providing a great experience. Maple Grove was supposed to be my last Tri for the year, but the weather and some organizational issues left me with the feeling that I needed 'One Last Tri' and this race fit the bill perfectly. I will be back next year.
I wanted to write and say thank you for putting on the endurance camp this June! I cannot over-emphasize the benefits of that camp in my preparation for IMWI this year. Knowing what to expect was a huuuuge boost in mental fitness way at the beginning of summer. I was able to get out into lake Monona, complete the entire bike course, most of the run course, and see where the transitions go through the terrace/hear what to expect in the change tents. So every bike ride and run after that I was able to visualize what I wanted my race to look like. Most importantly, it helped to relieve the "can I do this?" anxiety by actually being out on the course. Everyone was super friendly and helpful (sharing their IMWI experiences) all weekend as well, which i appreciated...being a super nervous introvert showing up without knowing anyone ahead of time. I went into race day knowing that I would finish (which is a huge accomplishment in and of itself (I was a nervous wreck before all of my 70.3's last year!). I had a successful race and it was in no small part due to my experience on the course with the Tri Fitness group. You all are the best, thank you!!
Just a quick thank you for hosting such a great event! The staff was super friendly and the event well run.
What a great venue. This race is truly a tradition to be savored at the close of the Tri season. Thank you so much for all the effort you put into it. You made all of us athletes happy. Very best wishes.
Theresa K (from Spain):
After many years of participating in Tri events in Spain, the Turtleman was my first Tri in the USA...in native Minnesota. From the first email I received after registering to the followup emails afterwards, I was impressed with the obvious fact that you have an passion for this sport and a love for extending this feeling to others who are contemplating giving a Tri a try, taking on "the next" distance, and/or improving in the distance that we're comfortable in. Your positive, encouraging, down to earth comments help people's confidence to increase and the "I can do it" attitude flourishes. This directly affects going well beyond limits and I truly commend you on this!
Actually experiencing the Tri with you right there that day as you moved around and kept things upbeat and on course was amazing! Thank you for not only a wonderful, FUN, inspiring morning full of confident energy, but also for the pre and post news.
I hope to be in Minnesota next year at the Turtleman Tri time and participate again!
I just wanted to thank you for putting on a great event on Saturday. It was the fist time my nephew and I have participated in the Turtleman and we loved it! Well run, really fun, wonderful courses, and a great after party. We will definitely be coming back to join everyone in the years to come! Thank you for everything you and the volunteers did to make it a great event and a really fun day!
Thank you for all the work you put into this. On behalf of both our teams (Hobbits Quest and Weskimoo) we had such a great time and the whole race event was fun for all. We even have a few first timers that we may have hooked, and they are already talking about next year.
I completed the "My First Tri" last weekend, and it was amazing! I was really nervous about setting up the transition area and all of that for the first time, but I was able to get some great tips! It was also nice to be with other first timers, and to not have a competitive arena for my first one.
I want to thank you for putting together such a wonderful event. This was my first Olympic Tri, and your location and event was excellent. I came into this event thinking, "I just want to finish one Olympic distance and then be done and go back to Sprints." I am now convinced I can do another! The race felt great! Thanks again to you and your Tri Fitness organization! You put a lot of effort into this event.
I just wanted to drop you a quick line to let you know that I thoroughly enjoyed Turtleman! Partially because I had a PR at the Olympic distance but also because everything was so well organized! When racing in smaller races, one never knows what to expect from an organizational standpoint. Turtleman was top notch though! Thank you for all of your hard work in putting on such a fantastic event!
Excellent event, awesome volunteers, very well organized! A completely outstanding experience! I have to tell you...learned a lot and realized there is great room for improvement. Gratitude to you and all the guys and girls that made possible this fantastic event. Thanks a million!
Yesterday was incredible. Thank you again for all of your time, patience, advice, work, and heart that you put into making it happen. I am so thankful for all of it, and for you!
My whole life, I have never considered myself good at sports. More of a bookworm as a kid, I moved around and changed schools enough that I successfully (and purposefully) evaded all but one half-semester PE class through my entire educational career. I spent hours playing at the pool every summer for a few years as a kid, took dance class for a few years, and played on a softball league for a couple of years, but I never really put much of my heart into any of those things. A few years ago, I started cycling for sport -- the first thing I felt decent at. I tried running a few times over the years, never pushing myself enough to be able to sustain a run for any length of time greater than a couple of minutes. Every so often, I would pick up a random fitness plan here or there -- the 90-day body revolution, a brief stint with a gym membership, etc. -- but never stuck with anything for very long. I even pretty much stopped biking after a couple of years. My husband and my mom -- the people in my life who were closest to me -- were unsupportive at best, and I listened when they told me I couldn't do the things I wanted to do. I just "wasn't meant to be an athlete," and that was something I simply accepted as truth.
After college, I took a desk job and began my career, quickly putting on 10 lbs. here, another 5 lbs. there, until I had gained about 35 lbs. and was overweight, moving pretty quickly toward obesity. For a couple of years, I tried unsuccessfully to lose the weight, but there again, my heart just wasn't really in it. During the same time, we bought a house, and I changed jobs, giving me a significantly longer commute (and therefore even less time to take care of myself). Two years ago, a friend at work asked if I wanted to join her for a triathlon after I mentioned that I had always thought it would be cool to do one. I laughed, and although I wanted to say yes, I knew there was no way I could. "Thanks for the invitation, but I can't do sports like that," I told her. But it got the gears in my head turning, and I started wondering why I felt that way. Why couldn't I do a triathlon?
Fast forward to last spring, when I finally decided I had enough and needed to make some changes.I started the Couch to 5K app and had to restart it 6 times. It ended up taking me nearly 8 months to do what you're "supposed" to be able to do in 8 weeks. I got a gym membership and started using it, even when I didn't feel like it. Actually, especially when I didn't feel like it. I started training, hard, and watched myself get stronger every single day, fueling a fire I didn't even know I had. My training started to give me unexpected confidence in every aspect my life. The confidence I needed to stand up for myself at work, to leave an unhealthy marriage, and to set and hold boundaries with toxic family. I put myself and my body first, and I started to make my health and fitness a priority. Every visit to the gym, every mile logged, every healthy meal I ate, every blister and every sore muscle, was one step closer to a goal I had marked off as unattainable. I started looking forward to going to the gym. I lost 30 lbs. of fat and gained muscle mass like crazy. I changed, completely, from the inside out.
Originally, I only signed up for the One Last Tri event in September once I had enough confidence and training under my belt that I felt I could actually do it. But, trying not to be overly ambitious, I gave myself an extra 6 months to prepare (it was March when I registered). Then, I finally went for a swim at the gym for the first time, and I realized I didn't need to wait until September. In May, I signed up for the My First Tri event in June, and I kept pushing.
And then, I did it.
In the last year, I have experienced more life changing events than is reasonable to expect a person to stay sane through. Not the least of these changes were that I separated from my husband and will soon be officially divorced. We sold the house, and I moved into my own place for the first time in my life. I got a new job because I wanted to, not because I had to. I am no longer overweight and have become healthier than I've ever been. After finally learning to tell myself that I can, I then found a partner who celebrates my strength with me.
To me, this triathlon represents not just a feat of physical fitness and stamina, but a lifetime of being told I can't by those who were supposed to lift me up -- not the least of which being myself -- ending with a glorious, overdue, "Actually, I can." Every mile, every inch, was an affirmation that I am strong, independent, capable, and good. Crossing the finish line was an incredible achievement for me in so many ways, and for that I will be forever grateful.
Just can't thank you enough for putting on this event, Judi. It was wonderful. So many nice people I met. Tony is great. You couldn't have paired me up with anyone better for me. I was really blessed. Again, thank you so much for the time and effort putting today together.
(regarding My First Tri)
"I wanted to send a note of gratitude to you all for a terrific first experience racing in a triathlon. From the first time I stumbled into the wrong location and scored all my tri gear from Jad and Judi, you all make this thing called a triathlon seem like magic. Thanks for all your help getting me started. I have lots more training to do in the future, but I can't think of a better first experience. All the help on-site today was just fantastic and so necessary. The nerves were there for sure and having that support felt great."
(regarding My First Tri)
"I was really struggling training for my first marathon. The pro's at Trifitness helped me through it and I finished just fine!"
Brad came into the store because he was having pain when running in an attempt to train for his first marathon. He had tried several different running stores, shoes, etc., prior to coming to us. He was even considering bailing on the marathon because he was in so much pain. Vicki brought him in for a 60 min session to address stretching, his gait, proper warmup, etc., and he was able to complete his first marathon without any issues.
My friend Patty and I had a blast on Saturday at Beat the Freeze!! Even though it was impossibly icy on the lake, it was sunny!! Thanks for sponsoring the event. We hope you can advertise it more next year and grow it along with the jump in the lake!!
Thank you so much for this event. It was a blast! Literally. Love these smaller events…keep them going. I don’t have a FAT BIKE, but that sounds fun, too.
(regarding Beat The Freeze)
I feel so lucky to be able to have coaching time with Pete. My time with him is so incredibly valuable - both for my body and for my mind. I learn so much during his classes and I leave so much smarter than I was when I began the class. Nevermind that I’m actually getting stronger, too.
Thank you for hiring such an accomplished cycling coach and teacher. His classes really are terrific.
The positive results that have come as a result of working with Jeremy are undeniable. Like so many others, I was proud to be self-coached, and I had experienced some success as a triathlete and in road races. Then I set my goals a little higher and I knew I needed to be faster. I could create a training regimen for general fitness, but was at a loss for actually increasing speed. Qualifying for the USAT Age-Group National Championships was not just challenging but mysterious. Fortunately, Jeremy was able to help me excel.
My own training scheme was based primarily on mileage; how many miles I was going to run/bike this week over however many sessions. I did swim workouts from a book, simply doing one that looked manageable for that day. And there was some sort of progression of volume and rest, but I don’t think I could actually explain it. My strength training was a conglomeration of things I had found in books and magazines. Again, designed more for general fitness than for standing on the podium.
The two things with the biggest impact Jeremy introduced into my training program were heart rate training and interval work. Now each session had heart rate parameters and quality biofeedback, and they could be used to track fitness improvements over time. My favorite workout is when Jeremy says “Run for 1-hour, going as fast as you can, without leaving HR zone 2,” which forces me to have increased perception of my technique and effort level, and challenges me to become more efficient. My bike workouts got more fun, and a lot harder, when Jeremy had me working intervals. We did repeats, progressions, and the occasional all-out hill climbs. It works; I had the 3rd fastest overall bike split at Square Lake Tri (short course) and One Last Tri (long course). Jeremy wrote a new strength training program for me, tailored to the needs of triathlon and my personal areas for growth. My glutes and hammies are sic, and I can even do several pull-ups (in a row!).
After watching me get ready before races (or not get ready, as the case may be), Jeremy coached me on getting in a proper warm-up. I’m sure I will always feel a little foolish carrying my bike-trainer in to transition, but it’s working for me so far. With the move to being coached, I am relieved to not stress about planning my whole season, or trying to manage periodization mesocycles and so forth. I just do the workouts Jeremy writes. So what has happened since I started working with Jeremy six months ago?
- I ran my first sub-6:00 mile (at age 35!).
- 59/446 males at Minneapolis Lifetime Triathlon (standard distance).
- 40:38 10K at Run for the Roses.
- 1:29:14 at the Mankato Half Marathon – 3/100 in age group.
- 9/121 overall at Hickory Grove Triathlon (sprint distance).
- 8th overall male at Square Lake Tri (short course).
- 1st overall male at One Last Tri (long course).
Finally, under Jeremy’s tutelage I did qualify for the USAT Age-Group National Championships. And there, against the toughest age-groupers, he got me to a PR of 2:16:00, finishing top half in my first attempt at this level of racing. I would be remiss if I failed to mention Jeremy, himself, is an accomplished athlete, which lends to his credibility and is inspirational to me. He is also indefatigably caring, adaptable, and committed to helping each of his athletes reach their goals. I consider Jeremy my brain trust; he removes the mystery that surrounds endurance racing, and I am grateful to have connected with such a good coach.
"I just wanted to drop a quick note to let you know how my first swim lesson with Amy went yesterday. It was the best thing ever! In my swimming, I had become frustrated with plowing up and down the lane and competing with just average swim splits. I finally accepted it probably wasn't my fitness that was holding me back, but technique. By the third lap Amy had me moving at my usual pace with about half the effort. We worked primarily on balance and floating. I almost floated! Amy took illustrative video of me, and was able to verbalize the 'sense' of particular swimming movements to help me understand what the stroke should feel like. And, of course, she is very compassionate and has a magnetic personality. I'll be signing up for more."
We had SEVERAL entertaining testimonials along the way from Jane regarding our Weight Loss Challenge. Here are just a few...
"I am one happy (and sweaty) camper. Small miracles keep adding up!
- Went to the movies, climbed to the top without holding on, stopping, or being out of breath. Sat down and didn’t have to squeeze into the seat. Didn’t even want popcorn!
- Clothes are getting looser. I can put on a t-shirt or sweater and it doesn’t hug every lump, bump, and bulge.
- I am fastening my bras at the smallest hooks.
- May have to shop soon. Pants I normally wear are kind of hanging low, getting some out of the back of the drawers that I haven’t worn for a lloooonnnggg time!
- Saggy granny panties!!
- I can sit at the school cafeteria tables without feeling like I’m going to fall off backwards (I do before and after school childcare in an elementary school and our space is the gym/cafeteria).
- I have the energy to play in the gym with the kids.
- I can reach every spot on my body effortlessly.
- To tie my new sneakers is a breeze.
- I crossed my legs for the first time in forever. It kind of took me by surprise. We were visiting with a friend in our living room, I sat down and just automatically crossed them. It felt so foreign I had to uncross and recross them multiple times to see if it was for real.
- My rings are loose and I can remove them without soap.
- Climbing into my full-size van!!"
"I tend to babble on, especially when I am enthused about something! If you haven't noticed, I am ENTHUSED with the program and am kind of sad it will be over in 4 weeks. :( I am thankful for your support and obvious shared delight in all our successes."
"I think (knock on wood) that my RA flare is subsiding. My shoulders (especially the left) are normally mobile now. Even my left knee is improved - I would say at 70 %! OMG it is so good to feel comfortable! Yesterday I felt like an energizer bunny doing yard work! I kept going and going and going!"
"Guess what!? I am starting to see a little bone structure in my face! I have cheek bones and a jaw line. Huh, who knew?? A co-worker told me that I have lovely eyes. Hmmm, known her for years, same eyes as always. Maybe they’re just more noticeable now because they aren’t overshadowed by as much surrounding facial flubber?? That was pretty cool and made my day!"
"Some silly updates: I can sing again!! I don’t sing well, but I love to sing along with the radio in the car. It’s been a long time since I felt I had enough breath to manage. On Saturday I drove to St. Cloud to watch my daughter’s rugby team. I had KQ on and started to sing along. My gosh! I could do it! I rocked it all the way home - miles and miles of grateful tears and smiles. Also, when I got in Steve’s car to drive, instead of moving the seat back, I had to move it forward! HA! Still so many happy discoveries every day"
"How fast can 10 weeks fly by?? Unbelievable! People have congratulated me and told me they appreciate the hard work this must have been. Dang it! I have to tell them that, no, it's actually been really fun and that I am sorry to see it end. I got to meet a whole bunch of totally awesome folks who I would like to wrap up in a package and bring home with me to keep forever. :-) I learned a lot about myself and what is possible in this life of mine. I determined that I WILL SURVIVE! I do not have to slowly and painfully wait to die. Morose, I know, but it was what it was. :-/ Thanks from the bottom of my heart for putting up with my tears, limitations, teasing, and failing wardrobe. Thanks for being so supportive and HAPPY for me and for everyone making this journey. I am sorry to see this portion of the journey end, but it is time to test my wings flying solo for a while. We will be poking our noses in the TriFitness door again soon (this is your official heads up so you all know when to turn down the lights, lock the doors, and hide in the meat lockers)."
"Speaking for Jane & myself, we are very pleased with all the support and encouragement that the whole staff at Tri Fitness have given us in the short period of time thus far. We are energized, excited, and mostly surprised at the amazing results to date. Family members and friends are starting to notice the changes and are blown away when we mention the weight loss to date. We cannot express enough our deepest gratitude to you for all you have done and the care given to us both. It is truly a life-changing experience for us and we have you to thank for the miracle of a better life through your guidance."
(regarding the 10 Week Weight Loss Challenge)
"Thank y'all for helping me to get this far. If the scale speaks truth, I believe I am under 200 pounds for the first time since at least the late 90s! During my senior year of high school (my peak conditioning ever), I played football at 185 pounds! That was just about right for my frame, so since I'm this far, why not push on, eh?"
"The camaraderie was thoroughly enjoyable and the support and encouragement from the trainers top notch - particularly the assistance provided in getting my feet into those crazy TRX straps for the first 10 to 12 weeks! Jeremy, there are not too many people on the face of the earth I allow to push me to the point of nausea, but you made the grade on at least one day during round 1. Vicki's recent Advanced Cardio for the Professor and the Two Musketeers was one for the ages...and then there was that crazy 50 thing that I completed about 25% of while the real athlete did it with one arm tied around his back. ;-) Tea and Crumpets on Monday mornings with Tanya were awesome (breaking me out of night owl/don't want to wake up mode for the first time in years). And, Laura's feedback was most helpful during round 1 (although the manufacturers of all the stuff in the middle of the grocery store are suffering because of it). All around goodness...and no silly gimmicks! It looks that I'm going to be the proverbial drunk at the bar, slurring "one more round" at closing time...during the next round, I'm going to trim off a few more pounds, get a little more definition, and work towards doing some waterless (bike/run) distance things later this summer. I'll look forward to seeing all of you sooner or later - hopefully the former rather than the latter."
(regarding the 10 Week Weight Loss Challenge)
"I wanted to let you know how much I appreciated all that you did during the challenge. My main purpose in signing up was to get a nutrition plan that was maintainable long-term, along with fitness coaching. I was looking for guidance on how to alter my lifestyle, not just lose a few pounds.
With your help and everyone at Tri Fitness, my expectations were definitely met. You provided me with the tools and motivation to start out on a new path. Other than 2-3 pounds added over the holidays, I've maintained my weight. My fitness has consisted of at least 3 sessions a week, but I will be increasing that shortly. I will be entering my first triathlon this year!"
(regarding the 10 Week Weight Loss Challenge)
"Thank you both very much for all of your support with Annie joining Tri Fitness. You’ve made her entry into the 'Tri Fitness World' an easy one and she is very excited about renewing her focus on getting in shape. You’ve built a terrific training center in a very competitive environment. If there’s anything I can do to help you grow your business please ask."
(regarding the 10 Week Weight Loss Challenge)
"Thanks for your email and the class! It was great info!! I was going to shoot you a line to let you know I incorporated some of the tips from Saturday's class into last night's run - first since the class. I had a PR 5k time of sub-27 minutes and I shaved some 2 minutes plus off of the total run of 5 miles. And that's just from the first outing!"
"I just wanted you to know how impressed and happy I am as a member of Tri Fitness and the Tri Club. As a complete rookie, it’s been an incredible experience training and getting to know the trainers and other Tri Club members. Last night was especially terrific. It was my first open water swim and I had no idea what I was doing. Tracy was her usual supportive and awesome self, only calling me grandpa once when I was slacking at the buoy. The camaraderie among the team is so great. No one’s got a big timer attitude even though they are clearly in a different league. It is the most welcoming and inclusive group of people I’ve ever been around. I really do love it. Thank you for creating such an awesome environment for me and others to challenge ourselves in."
"Yes, I owe you many thanks, but the most recent episode is with regard to my bike chain. Thanks a ton for the very prompt service and being able to find and repair my old one. I couldn't resist going for a nice 'little' ride that afternoon. The ride from Hugo to Forest Lake was smooth and easy - so much so I went further than I had originally planned. So, a quick little ride started with a 30 minute ride north. It was a little windy, but I was managing well so I kept going, then I turned around! It was then that I discovered that the wind had been entirely at my back and was now directly head on. YIKES! It took another 1:20 to get back. It wasn't really that bad - I kept a cadence around 90, put it in the lowest gear, and just kept going at a whopping 8-9 mph. It all ended well, and the good news is that the chain (and everything else) worked perfectly (and I only fell once). Even better, Jen and I went out for another 'little' ride last night that turned into an hour before we knew it.
So, thanks for the chain, but more so, thanks for the support you have given to me and my family through Tri Fitness, the classes, events, and discussions. I never would have imagined that our family could have experienced the transformation of health and habit over the past year that has come about because of you, Judi, Jeremy, Tanya, Brandon, Jane, Tracy...
We really have been blessed through you."
"I just wanted to tell you that the running seminar with Jeremy yesterday was AWESOME!!!!!!!! I am SO happy that I went; it was incredibly valuable to me. I was hesitant to sign up at first, because $45 is a big investment for me to risk on something that I wasn't convinced would be worthwhile. But, I've had good experiences with your company in the past, and after reading Jeremy's credentials, I decided to take a chance. I LOVE running, but I needed a little personal guidance.
WELL...I can't believe how great all the information was that I got yesterday! I LOVED that it was such a small group - only five of us - so we could ask all our questions, which Jeremy was very welcoming of, and very equipped to answer. I LOVED that we EACH got a videotaped analysis of our running. This was the most valuable part, I think. I've already put into practice the things that Jeremy pinpointed for me from the video. He gave us such great tips for pre-run exercises and post-run exercises, and now I have completely changed my bad attitude toward 'boring' things like strength training! I have a new understanding of the importance of strength training, so I think I will be able to 'like' doing the slow exercises now.
I have a foam roller, and I didn't know what to do with it. Now I do. Jeremy promised to email all of us the exercise routines that we did so that we wouldn't have to scribble out so many notes during class. I am looking forward to him sending those. He also gave us great information about fueling during long races. I appreciated his candidness and honesty about products, what works, what doesn't, and WHY. No doubt he is an expert in all of these areas! And it was very fascinating to just talk to someone who does ultra marathons!!! I think we all appreciated that he was so willing to stay late to learn more and hear about his experiences.
So, I just wanted to thank you and your staff for a terrific seminar yesterday. I feel like there's hope for me now! I WILL do a full marathon someday, and I will be a better runner now because of what I learned from this seminar."
I want to say thanks for all the awesome training! I took first place in my age group category at the ywca woman's triathlon (there was one woman in the masters category who was faster, so technically 2nd of the 40-44 year olds), 13th overall, and most importantly took 8.5 minutes off my time from 2 years ago!!!
I know it was the Tri Club that made this possible! It was really cool to have the training show, I would have never thought I could do this!
I think an ironman is next (after the moose mountain marathon)!!!!
"How can I ever express how grateful I am for choosing Vicki Ostendorf as my coach for two years in a row; you know me better than myself at times, and you are a master at helping me push beyond the boundaries of what I thought were my limits. I am healthy, not injured, not overtrained, and had a race result that I would never have dreamed possible two years ago!
I beat the spandex pants off of countless athletes that have had to endure 2-3 times the training volume that we did, but thanks to Vicki's plan, we concentrated on quality, purposeful workouts that get results, not junk miles that serve only to wear you down mentally and physically. I know she will continue to bring out the very best in me, because I haven't found my limits yet!
I look forward to training with the Tri Ftness group next year and many years to come; I'm not done, by a LONG shot!"
(Regarding a shoe fit and shoe purchase)
Sue and Jenny:
"We just wanted to say THANK YOU to you! We both had a great experience and are inspired to try other triathlons! We only wish you guys were a little closer to us (Eden Prairie), as we would certainly use more of your training services. If you ever open another place in the South Metro, be sure to let us know! In the meantime, if you know of any other training facilities similar to yours, we’d love to learn about them.
We hope to participate in some of your other race events. Ever think of a My Second (Third….)Tri?! The friendly competition was so great! I wish more races could embrace that mentality. You guys have really done it right, and we sincerely appreciate it!"
(regarding My First Tri August 2013)
"Thanks again for a great event! Can't tell you how much it meant to me. I also want to share something with you that I posted on Facebook...
A few reflections on My First Tri:
1) We can talk ourselves into or out of pretty much anything. I talked myself into doing this event and could easily have talked myself out of finishing - particularly when I was waiting to go in the water and started to panic a little, and found myself starting to cry. Or, during all those seemingly endless hills of the bike ride when my muscles were shaking like crazy and I couldn't get my breath. OR, during the hills (yes, even more) of the run (which I mostly walked). But, because I went public with this goal and what I was working on, I couldn't let any of you, or myself, down.
2) While this is not a new revelation, it is a reiteration that I have an amazingly supportive and fabulous husband. Sid Kasper, I love you more than words can say, and I am so grateful that we found each other many years ago. I know that you wanted to be there today, but I'm glad you were able to do the things that you wanted to do today.
3) It's always better when we don't have to do things alone. Lorrie Adams took this challenge on with me, and we had a fantastic time laughing together, rejoicing together, and of course, there was a little crying together, too.
4) There is immeasurable power in the encouragement of people around us. Thanks to my number one trainer, Steve Shorten, he helped me to work through a lot of bugs in the process. I am not a very good student at times, so I appreciated his patience. I have a long way to go to get good at this, but I sure appreciate his calls, emails, and advice. To my brother-in-law, Tom Kasper, and my sister-in-law, Annemarie Kasper, can't thank you enough for being with us today and cheering us on and taking photos! Having you there was the best! Annemarie, looking forward to you joining us next time! And last but not least, thank you to the person who joined me on the last bit of my run to cheer me on, and to all the volunteers and participants at the end who clapped and gave us high fives as we crossed the finish line. WHAT A DAY TO REMEMBER!"
"I want to give kudos to your great staff-Brandon and Dennis have both been very informative, helpful, friendly and supportive. It makes the experience that much better. Thanks!"
(regarding My First Tri August 2013)
"The shoes worked great, perfect fit."
(regarding a Karhu shoe purchase)
"Thanks for the great running shoe fitting yesterday! Quality people, quality products, competitive prices! I'll be back!"
"A friend and I came into the store last Thursday to get our feet 'fitted' for the correct shoe. Although I have a total lapse in the employee's name (she was a thin, tan, blonde gal), I will NEVER forget her confidence, compassion, knowledge, friendliness, passion, support, and unbiased attitude. Very rarely do you get service like I received that day. I just wanted to give you a GIGANTIC thank you.
You will never know how much I appreciated you that day. My feet thank you too! You are AMAZING at what you do. I will never go anywhere else again to buy shoes. I just wish I lived closer so I could attend some of the classes that are offered too. Thanks again."
"[My mom] thinks so highly of you guys and is so grateful for everything you are doing for her. So am I!
She has come so far and can do things now she never thought would be possible after her surgeries. Even Physical Therapy after surgery didn't come close to helping her as much as you guys have. I don't think I can ever express how happy I am that she finally found a way that works for her to make healthy lifestyle changes. I hated seeing her in so much pain. Thank you so much for helping her!"
"Wow! I just wanted to say a big thanks to all the staff, trainers and volunteers who made My First Tri a great event. The smiles and cheers were really appreciated.
Also, for anyone thinking of a first tri, I highly recommend the mini tri event. That helped me so much with the transitions. I may have been a little slow, but I felt efficient and calm.
Thanks again. I'm looking forward to swim training with you this fall."
"If you can believe it, I just started using the bike you fitted me for this past weekend. I've got about 50miles in, and I must say, what a difference. I feel much more comfortable and have consistently been able to hold much higher speeds.
"My name is Jessica and I am a 29 year old physical therapist and PhD student currently in week 12 of my 36-week Ironman WI training plan. My friend, Adam, started participating in Tri Fitness master swim classes and had rave reviews."
"Thank you guys for the great birthday! I ran my first 5K today at the Half Fast (I was the big guy) and it happened to be my 37th birthday. It was an awesome time and look forward to doing many more. Also, thank you for posting the pictures. Our camera crapped out and my
wife didn't get any photos when I finished so it was really cool to be able to download them."
"I just wanted to write to thank everyone at Tri Fitness for the great Fast Before The Feast event! I had a good time running before the big meal, and I was lucky enough to win a pair of some great K-Swiss shoes (I love them, by the way!).
I wrote about the event and your great store in my blog, and I just wanted to let you know how much the great service in the store meant to me. Nice work!"
"Great run this morning. This is my 3rd Fast before The Feast and I think this has been the best (weather helped)! Thanks for doing this - I know it must be a lot of work, but it is greatly appreciated. We're turning it into a Thanksgiving tradition as I got my sister and sister-in-law to run with me as well!"
"Thanks for an awesome race! What a great way to start my Thanksgiving day! Everything seemed to be put together pretty well! I will definitely sign up for another run with you guys in the future!"
"Great event, my family is going to make this a tradition."
(regarding Fast Before The Feast)
"First, thanks for a great race. I recently moved to New Brighton and this was the first time I ran the fast before the feast. I was really impressed with how well organized the race was - especially with the volunteers directing us to parking spots. Thank you!"
(regarding Fast Before The Feast)
"Thank you so much for putting on a fun event at the Scare in White Bear 5k. My friends and I had a great time running it, and my wife and another friend had a great time watching it."
(regarding Scare In White Bear)
"Great race event. Really enjoyed it, despite the rain. I'll be back next year."
(regarding One Last Tri)
"Great job with OLT on Sunday. A fun event can make bad weather not seem so bad. It was my first sprint (usually do Olympic or longer) and had a blast!
Thanks again! See you at Cinco (Du Mayo)."
(regarding One Last Tri)
"Thanks for the great race! The race was wonderful and was handled perfectly. Many of our team participants want to repeat this event next year. Our hats off to you and your race committee. Our wheelchair participant said that was 'the best thing I've done since being in a wheelchair for 13 years.' We thank your group for his experience. You are wonderful."
(regarding One Last Tri)
"Thanks. I must say, huge improvement from 2 years ago. I will definitely be back."
(regarding One Last Tri)
"A big thanks to everyone at Tri Fitness for helping me achieve my goal to finish My First Tri before 50.
A special thanks to Amy for improving my swimming technique and Judi for sticking with me during my bike crash (it meant a lot), and for all your biking tips and for making all this happen in a safe and encouraging environment. You're great.
I would also like to thank all the wonderful people at the retail store for helping me with the things I needed and also for turning some - a lot - of the fear and anxiety I had into positive energy. Your patience, kindness, and encouragement really has an impact.
Hugs to all the volunteers for all their words of encouragement along the way - especially the one who said, "You only have a quarter mile left. You can do this." Boy, did I need to hear that.
I have a tremendous amount of improving to do, and I look forward to taking classes so I can get ready for more."
"I wanted to thank the Tri Fitness team for the great experience that my friend and I had this past weekend at the Camp Wannarunamileormore Half Marathon. I also wanted to comment on the great service we received the night before buying running shoes in your store.
Being a Physical Therapist myself, I am often leery on what kinds of analysis I receive when picking out new running shoes. The analysis that was done Friday night was beyond my expectations and I am thrilled to say that I ran the half marathon in brand new shoes - something not frequently done.
I would highly recommend that the trip be made to your store for a complete analysis. Thanks again for such a wonderful experience."
"I just wanted to tell you how much I enjoyed the "My First Tri" on Saturday. It was so well done with such great support throughout the race! Made doing a triathlon for the first time so much less stressful! I'm hooked and look forward to my next one!"
"Thanks for a great afternoon of biking today, the drive was well worth it. The staff from Tri Fitness were all so remarkable, friendly, helpful, and knowledgeable!"
"I wanted to send a BIG thank you to all of your wonderful staff and volunteers that were at the My First Tri Saturday. Everything went really well and I had such a great time. I absolutely loved my experience.
"Thanks to the entire Tri Fit staff for helping this 'Crash' biker during yesterday's Tri. Yes, I was the one who got a free ride to Regions Hospital.
Can't mention all names, but Vickie (owner), Amy (Swimming Coach), paramedics, and especially Mike Kelly (my mentor) were great despite my error in missing the last corner on the bike portion. I'm fine and recovering from a minor concussion, bruised ribs, and left some forearm skin.
Their concern and follow up calls were very thoughtful and the main reason why Tri Fitness WBL is an exceptional group, and one reason I'm looking to return and finish without trying to take off flying from a bike. I am sold on Uvex Biking helmets as it prevented a more serious injury. A plug for buying from Tri Fit."
"Fantastic experience, wonderful race, staff, and volunteers! Couldn't have been more pleased! Thank you a million times over!"
(regarding My First Tri)
"What a blast! Hats off to those that put this event together. More Tri's to come for me. I am hooked!"
(regarding My First Tri)
"Thank you the event was awesome! Can't wait until my next event!!!! Thank you to everyone at Tri Fitness, Perch Lake, the many volunteers, and to new found friendships!"
(regarding My First Tri)
"Wow! What a deal! I visited Tri Fitness yesterday while heading back to Red Wing, MN after the Cemstone Run for Others 10K. I usually buy Nike size 9 as I have slightly narrow feet. The Karhus fit me perfect - I may be a convert. By the way, it was a pleasure to be waited on by the friendly and knowledgeable staff at Tri Fitness in WBL. Thanks!"
"I just bought my 1st bike, Orbea Onyx, at Tri Fitness and signed up for 'My First Tri' in June. Love the bike, but more important is the experience with Judi, Vicki, and the entire staff at Tri Fitness.
Being my first tri, learning to swim, and buying my first quality bike, everyone has been supportive, very knowledgeable, and fun to deal with. A very 'positive' group and with all the resources that will help my on my 'first journey' to finish a triathlon."
"Loving my new Karhu shoes! Thanks Jane for helping me with the PERFECT fit!!!"
"Had a great ride outside yesterday, and all I can say is, WOW! What an amazing difference! Thanks again for all the time you spent helping me get the most from my bike! It really was an incredible feeling!"
"I went in because I received a gift card for Christmas. I'm a runner, a nascent biker, and sort of a meh swimmer, by the way, so I was looking mostly for running things.
The staff was super helpful and very knowledgeable. It's a little store with not THAT much selection compared to the Runner's Room, but it's a local business, and the brands and products that it does have are top notch.
So much for going to big box stores for my running/swimming/biking needs. I will be back in again!"
"Weighs and Means...love it! You guys are smarter than smart!"
From our April 2011 customer survey:
"It's the owners and staff's knowledge that makes it easy to find what I'm looking for."
"You have what I need there. The staff is very friendly and they know the products well."
"Friendly, knowledgeable staff who made the experience enjoyable - beginners are treated as well as the experienced triathletes!"
"Local, good reputation, and supports [the] community."
"Aaron is great to work with! He puts together a plan that makes me feel ready for races but not totally burned out. Aaron has helped work around my crazy schedule so that racing is still possible."
"Races are close to where I live. Great variety - like the biathlon!"
"I really like the training center."
"You are very helpful with finding your first running shoes. I always recommend everyone to come to your store for their first pair of shoes."
"Love the casual and fun nature of your email announcements!! The wetsuit trial was a fantastic idea and hooked me!"
Not all comments were that positive, of course, but we're working hard to address our shortcomings and make Tri Fitness the premier training facility and retail store for multi-sport athletes around.