RaceMill Collegiate: Emily Epperson of Iowa State

Working hard to play hard. Nationals Beware.

RM:  How did you find your sport of choice?

EE:  I learned how to swim at the age of 3 and for as long as I can remember I have been in love with the sport of swimming. I did my first 5k early on and fell in love with running at a young age. My dad had a big influence on my love of running. I love doing 5k and 10k's. I've done a couple of half marathons and one marathon and still love the sport of running. I always enjoyed biking with my family when I was younger and got back into the sport when I picked up the sport of triathlon during my junior year of high school. My high school swim coach got me hooked on the sport of triathlon and I've loved it ever since my first race!

RM:  What drives your competitiveness?

EE:  Working and training really hard and then seeing it pay off at a race is a great motivator! The past couple of years at Collegiate Nationals I take off at least 15 minutes of my overall time and that's a great push into the next year of training and races. The feeling I get when I am feeling great during a race drives my motivation and competitiveness even more.

RM:  Athlete that inspires you? Why?

EE:  Hunter Kemper is definitely one athlete that inspires me. It's so amazing that he has gone to the Olympics 4 times (and is looking to go a 5th time)! I've heard him speak and he is so humble with all of his accomplishments. I love that about pro athletes. He trains hard and his hard work pays off. His dedication to the sport is really inspiring too. He's also a family guy and I think it's great how he can balance his home life and being pro athlete.

RM:  How many years have you been competing?

EE:  I've been competing in triathlons for 6 years now (approaching 7). This year will be my fourth year at Collegiate Nationals.

RM:  Perfect weekend workout trip... where to? what do you bring? Itemize it! Tell us why it's in your car and why we need it.

EE:  I am from Texas so I would definitely go back home! Not only could I get some training in with warmer weather but I could see family and friends. I would love to get in some solid workouts with my high school swim coach (now a certified triathlon coach) and friends who are also into the sport of triathlon. What I would bring would be my bike, helmet (gotta be safe), swimsuit (training swimsuit and tanning swimsuit), What I would bring in my car would be water (have to be hydrated) and some awesome tunes to jam the whole way there (gotta get pumped for your perfect weekend workout trip)! After a good workout I would relax by the pool at my house and take a nap (because sleep is important)!

RM:  Group Training or do you prefer solitude? why?

EE:  I enjoy group training a lot more than working out by myself. Being in a group setting not only makes workouts go by faster but it's more fun training with your teammates.

RM:  Best result so far?

EE:  I had my best Olympic finish last year at Collegiate Nationals. It was a phenomenal feeling to see how much my hard work and dedication paid off. It's an amazing feeling when a race goes exactly how you want it to go. I even set a pr in my 10k within that race which was crazy.

RM:  What are you working on right now?

EE:  I'm working on planning out what I want to do after graduation (2016) in my free time. I am wanting to go to physical therapy school, so I'm working on researching different schools and their programs to find where I want to go to physical therapy school. I am also going to be the president for the Iowa State Triathlon club for my second year, so starting to prep for our outdoor race that we put on in the fall is already underway!

RM:  What are you training for now?

EE:  For the past year I have been training for the Olympic distance and Mixed Team Relay at Collegiate Nationals. Then I'll be training for the summer conference races. I'm wanting to do another marathon, but I haven't decided when that will happen (maybe this fall).

RM:  Training secrets? Care to share?

EE:  Taking time to relax some and stretch after workouts is key. This helps me wind down after a workout. I try to get many run workouts during the week. Sometimes it's 2 miles or it's 6+ miles. When I get super stressed with school, a quick run or some type of workout is a great stress reliever. I also mix in some weight training (lifting) a few times a week. With mixing this in, I feel stronger during workouts which is always an awesome feeling.

RM:  Do you have a dream race you want to create?

EE:  It would be a lot of fun to have a chill race with some pro triathletes. It would be a blast to EE:  race alongside them and talk to them about their training secrets. It could be a Sprint or Olympic distance or maybe even super sprint because those are tons of fun!

Training Tracks:

1.) Days of Gold-Jake Owen

2.) On the Fence-Milo Greene

3.) Wrapped Up (feat. Travie McCoy)-Olly Murs

4.) Geronimo-Sheppard

5.) All We Got Is Time-Timeflies

6.) Shake It Off-Taylor Swift

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