Welcome to 2016: Monica Stratton
Monica is one of the newer members of CFC; she kicked her season off with a bang at this weekend’s superSEAL triathlon in Coronado.
* Congrats on a great performance this weekend, how did it go for you?
I love this race it was one of my first triathlons I ever competed in four years ago. This year was my third time on this course every year I learn a little bit more about myself.
The swim went well, felt strong, navigated correctly and came out of the water ready to run the long distance to transition. The conditions were perfect on the bike – for once I was not freezing for the first 10 miles. Pete and I have been working really hard on my bike over the winter and I felt the rewards. I was riding stronger than I had ever before which gave me a great deal of confidence. Every time my legs started screaming at me I would back down and then a few minutes later I was ready to charge again. Going into this race I really wanted to have a good run. I started the run hoping that I did not bike too hard since I really pushed. My legs cooperated and I had one of the best feeling runs I have had in a long time! When I crossed the finish line I was extremely stoked that I executed a great race.
* Tell us a bit about your sporting life?
Well I guess you could say I have participated in many different sports at a high level. I have been playing golf since I was about 10 where I competed at the highest level as a junior. I received a full ride scholarship to San Jose State where we were number two in the nation and I was All American. My college career was fun I played all over the US and Japan meeting fantastic people. Once I graduated form college I had no plans to play professional golf but within three months I entered my first professional event “ Just Happened” I was very successful on the West Coast mini tours but did not enjoy traveling across the country playing for a living. While I was in high school I also earned a Third Degree Black Belt In Kenpo Karate and a first degree in Tae Kwon Do. Needless to say I have always been involved in sports.
* Pro golfer and triathlete – how do the two compare and/or assist each other
Triathlon is very different to golf and that is why I love it. I grew up being the chubby golfer where running a mile was out of the question. Golf is great for concentration and work ethic – to be good at golf you need to put in thousand and thousands of repetitions to get the results you desire. Triathlon is a lot the same you need to be patient with yourself – the body does not become fast over night. I am extremely hard on myself but I understand that everything is a process and as long as I feel like I am on the right track and working towards getting better I am happy. I am very fortunate to have the opportunity to work with Pete where we can tweak my training constantly to optimize my performance.
The one thing I really enjoy about triathlon that differs from golf is you can train extremely hard and the speed should be there on race day. Yes you can have a bad day and be a few minutes off but its not like golf. In golf you can practice for months tee off in tournament hit two “Out of Bounds” on the first tee and be done for the rest of the round such a humbling game. Both are extremely mental and that is why I enjoy both.
* What races are you doing this year?
I just completed Oceanside 70.3 next up St George 70.3, local races then Haute Route in the Pyrenees finishing with IMAZ.
* Your family have obviously always supported the sporty life and your dad was there yesterday – does he normally come and watch? Surely he enjoyed this more than a full day on the golf course? (tongue in cheek)
My parents have always supported me in everything I do I am pretty lucky. I grew up playing golf with my dad which was a great and he started Karate shortly after I did. Now he gets on the bike at the YMCA and rides 10 miles 3 or 4 days a week not bad for a 82 year old. Dad loves coming to the Triathlons, he is in complete amazement of what we all do out there and I know he is proud of all my hard work. He shakes his head and calls me crazy quiet often but that is all part of it:)
* What are you hoping to achieve in triathlon
Like everyone I want to get faster every year for me its all about putting the time in. I am still fairly new to the sport so every event is a learning experience. I want to be competitive in Ironman events I would like to be able to have the opportunity to podium at a 70.3 and 140.6. Kona is definitely on my radar someday I would like to qualify and have the chance to experience what it is all about.
* Anything else you’d like to add?
Joining CFC has been the best thing in my triathlon career everyone is positive and motivating. Every race we have Pete, Amber and Ava cheering us on which is so awesome as well as seeing our teammates on the course. I love our team, we all get together for dinner before the races and celebrate after like a family.