Meet Performance High Athletes – Ariel Johnson & Matt Jenkinson

How did you get started in your current sport?

Ariel: I’ve always had a competitive spirit. I was a Division 1 pole vaulter, a sport that doesn’t continue easily after college, so I was looking for something new to do for a hobby. I met Matt and after hearing about his triathlon experiences I figured I would give it a shot. After the first race ( Y Not Tri) I was hooked!

Matt: I got started in triathlon thru cycling. I was riding my road bike a lot training for the Seattle to Portland ride when I saw an advertisement for the Y Not Tri. I figured I could swim, ride a bike, and run, might as well try them one after the other!

What’s the biggest challenge you’ve had to overcome?

My biggest challenge is the time I have to commit. I work full time and I am also getting my MBA. That being said, Michelle has done a great job of understanding my schedule and ensuring that my workouts are realistic and obtainable.
Matt: Getting my swim stroke straightened out. Over the years I developed a lot of bad swimming habits that were wearing me out during the swim portion of the race. I didn’t realize how tired it was making me!

What has been the greatest benefit of having a coach?

I believe more than half the battle if figuring out what I should be doing for my workout. With Michelle guiding me, I know I will be prepared for the 70.3 or not 😀
Matt: Taking the guesswork out of training. Michelle sets up the training regime, so the only thing I need to worry about is getting out there and following the plan! It’s crazy how much energy goes into planning out the routine.
Also, I was guilty of going too hard too often.  I figured I only had so much time to work out, so I needed to go hard to get the most out of it.  Michelle’s workouts have helped me balance when to go hard and when to recover to get the most out of my time.

What’s your best relationship advice for couples where both people are training?

MEAL PREP! We make an effort to plan out our dinners for the week so that way when we get done working out, we already know what’s for dinner. Make sure to check in with each other and root each other on 🙂 It’s been fun so far!

Matt: We always try to encourage each other during our workouts. It can be tough since our workouts aren’t always the same, but we try and give each other high fives and some positive words to help get through the training sessions.

Thank you Ariel & Matt!

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