What Does It Take to Be a Triathlete?

by Jenn (eating bender) on March 2, 2009

Late last week, I received an email from Robyn, a PR spokesperson for Jen Perez, a professional triathlete and member of Team EAS. She asked me if I’d be interested in doing a feature piece for the blog, since Jen is also a college student trying to balance healthy living with school and training. How could I not say yes?!

I will be emailing Robyn later this week with my questions, but also wanted to give you, the reader, an opportunity to chime in and ask Jen some questions of your own! So, put on your thinking caps and leave a comment on this post with your question. I know it’s short notice, but if you can, try to think of one before Wednesday night at 8:00 pm CST.

Here’s a brief bio on Jen Perez:

Jen Perez is a professional triathlete and member of Team EAS. Perez turned professional in 2005 and has received various distinctions including All-American honors in triathlon in 2004 (Female 18-19).  She also earned Honorable Mention Junior Dualthlete of the Year in 2002, 2003 and 2004 and is a three-time Team USA Junior Elite Member. Perez can currently be seen in the national TV spot for EAS with Philadelphia Phillies’ Chase Utley and Seattle Seahawks’ Matt Hasselbeck. (For fun outtakes, see here: Bloopers).

I’m really looking forward to this interview. I think it would be amazing to compete in a triathlon someday, and the fact that Jen (great name, by the way!) is doing it as a college student is really inspirational. Please leave a comment so that this interview can be interesting for you, too!

Thank You!

I am in the midst of studying for my final, so I have to keep this post short. But I couldn’t leave without saying a huge THANK YOU to my amazing bloggie and real-life friend Melissa, who sent me the sweetest and most thoughtful card!


She knew these next few weeks were going to be insane for me, and she wanted to ease the pain 😉


I was totally not expecting a treat to P.F. Chang’s! I love that restaurant! Thank you so much, Melissa. You are truly amazing and I am so grateful. If you’ve never read this girl’s blog, you must! She just moved to Florida to pursue her dream job and is doing some very cool stuff!

I leave you all now with a preview of what’s to come:


H-U-M-B-E-C-U-E :) Now it’s back to studying! I can’t wait to catch up on your blogs tomorrow because 1) I love reading them and 2) It means I’m one step closer to spring break! For now, just remember to leave a comment on this post if you have a question for Jen Perez!!

Dreaming of gender economics,


{ 33 comments… read them below or add one }

1 jenngirl March 2, 2009 at 9:08 pm

Oh that’s so cool about your feature piece, awesome stuff Jenn!!

Good luck with school work, it’s CRAZY at this point in the year…


2 Bec March 2, 2009 at 9:10 pm

I can’t wait to read that interview!


3 Emily March 2, 2009 at 9:20 pm

Congrats on scoring such a great interview!
Thanks for the shout-out, too! You’re entered in the giveaway.
Good luck getting things done..it’s a hectic time for sure!


4 Rose March 2, 2009 at 9:24 pm

What a wonderful opportunity for you, Jenn! And for us, as readers! You are the perfect person to do an interview – you journalist, you :) This is so exciting. My question is: How do you inspire yourself when your motivation is lacking? I love training for races and competitions but I find that from time to time it can be hard to get going certain days.

(and yes, you were the first comment EVER on my blog!)


5 Melissa S. March 2, 2009 at 9:25 pm

Yay for PF Changs!!! I hope you enjoy lots of yummmmmmmmers food there this weekend! You totally totally deserve it!!!!

and i can’t wait for that interview! that sounds so exciting!!!


6 ttfn300 March 2, 2009 at 10:18 pm

wow, awesome opportunity for that interview! i’m mad impressed– college student and professional triathlete??? I always thought it would be so neat to have someone to pay me to train all the time :)

Questions… What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever gotten? What’s your least favorite leg of the tri? (mine’s the swim!) What’s you’re training regime like? Last but not least, want to come train me for a week? :)


7 Marianne March 2, 2009 at 11:50 pm

Good luck on your exam. I so have to get some hummus back in the house so I can try out some humbecue on some eats!


8 Sarah March 2, 2009 at 11:57 pm

I love Melissa and HUMMBECUE!

Here’s a question for Jen: “What’s a typical day of eats during your training look like?”


9 coco March 3, 2009 at 4:18 am

really looking forward to read the interview! So cool!


10 Lara (Thinspired) March 3, 2009 at 4:37 am

What a sweet card—PF Changs?! YUM! Enjoy :)


11 MizFit March 3, 2009 at 5:50 am

I really love all things EAS.

look forward to the interview!


12 caitlin March 3, 2009 at 6:49 am

guess what? robyn is my friend from college. :)


13 VeggieGirl March 3, 2009 at 7:12 am

Hooray for a feature opportunity and for a PF Chang’s meal!! Enjoy that treat 😀


14 Marisa (trim the fat) March 3, 2009 at 7:17 am

Cool, Jenn!!

Here’s a couple ? How did you get involved with Team EAS? What is your training schedule? Do you train all year round? What are your challenges in balancing an intense training schedule and college studies? What is your major?

Hummbeque sounds yummy! I LOVE HUMMUS! Gotta make some today….


15 Foodie (Fab and Delicious Food) March 3, 2009 at 7:46 am



16 ksgoodeats March 3, 2009 at 8:02 am

What a fabulous gift AND opportunity! My Q would be, what is a lesson you’ve learned about yourself while training for the triathlon?


17 Andrea (Off Her Cork) March 3, 2009 at 8:16 am

Oh how cool! Okay my question is how she got started and how hard is it to balance training for the three events (balancing the running, biking, and swimming aspects). It seems like that would definitely take some serious time!


18 Betsy March 3, 2009 at 8:51 am

I’m excited to read the interview! I guess I’d be curious to know what the training is like.. how long & intense, and how realistic for someone who, say, works a full time job?


19 brandi March 3, 2009 at 9:23 am

how cool!

My question: how does she schedule her days with training/school/homework/down time, etc.? And, of course, what’s a typical day of eats? :)

Enjoy PF Changs – so nice of Melissa!


20 Rae March 3, 2009 at 9:46 am

DEFINITELY second the eats….I would want to know what her primary distance is (sprint, Olympic, HIM, Ironman) and how she determines what her ideal caloric intake should be!


21 Danielle March 3, 2009 at 9:51 am

That interview is going to be so much fun to read can’t wait!


22 seeleelive (for the love of peanut butter) March 3, 2009 at 10:30 am

ohhhh..that HUMBACUE salad looks killer!! WOooooohooooo!
congratulations on being…well, awesome!


23 bobbi March 3, 2009 at 10:50 am

love the card how sweet is Melissa!!!!


24 Emily March 3, 2009 at 11:24 am

Congrats on your feature about Jen Perez! As a runner who has trained and competed in long distance races, I’d be interested to know what keeps Jen going during her training – definitely the hardest part of competing. Is it her teammates, a role model, a certain goal?

Hope you have a great Tuesday. Good luck with all of your end-of-class work!


25 Victoria March 3, 2009 at 11:35 am

That is such a thoughtful thing for Melissa to do! Have fun comign up with interview questions!


26 gina (fitnessista) March 3, 2009 at 12:01 pm

how sweet of melissa! you know, if bobby’s busy, i would totally be your date haha 😉
what is with these weeks?! it’s insane!! hope you’re hanging in there ok
hope you have a wonderful day <3


27 runjess March 3, 2009 at 12:56 pm

I love PF Chang’s!


28 Jen March 3, 2009 at 1:43 pm

Great info chicka!!!

Ok…I must try the hummus n bbq!!! :)


29 Heather Eats Almond Butter March 3, 2009 at 2:37 pm

Sweet Melissa – she really is so thoughtful. I was amazed when she presented us all with gifts when we met for dinner, despite the fact that she was the one driving across the country to begin a new life in Florida. Love her.

How cool you get to interview Jen. My questions: How does she find the time to fit in all of her training (long runs, long rides) and take classes? Does she work out twice a day? Also, does she incorporate strength training? OK, one more – does she have to miss a lot of classes when traveling to races?

Thanks for letting us participate. :)


30 Meg March 3, 2009 at 7:31 pm

What a great opportunity!

Melissa is SO sweet.


31 Karla March 3, 2009 at 8:55 pm

Wow! This will be so fun to read! You’ll do a great job with the interview :)

I’ve done two sprint triathlons and would love to know how she speeds up her transitions. Those are always a little dicey for me!

Thanks for doing the research for us Jenn! Good luck with school and I’ll be emailing soon 😉


32 luckytastebuds March 3, 2009 at 9:47 pm

I have a question or two that could definitely be phrased better, but this is SUCH a cool interview!!! yay!! I know you’ll be an awesome interviewer!

So my question is: What are the three greatest sacrifices you’ve made because of your decision to be tri-athelete and what makes it all worth it??

Oh man you are too cute! PF Changs huh?!?! I would have had no idea! Are you a fan of Joy yees? heheheh. Good luck with the tests!!! :)


33 Jenn (eating bender) March 3, 2009 at 10:41 pm

Thanks to everyone who posted questions! I had some similar ones, but others I would never have thought of and I can’t wait to hear her responses to all of them :)


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