I'm a circa-1967 mom of two boys, Spencer (17), and Grant (15). After working and teaching at Virginia Tech for many years, my skills and passions have converged and brought me to the fortyninegroup as the Director of Client Marketing in 2012. I bring my mix of competitive sports experience, human factors engineering skills, and creativity to serve the needs of the our event, athlete, equipment, accessory, coaching, media, and registration clients. I get to work with great people around the country, write, be creative, and promote the sport and lifestyle of triathlon! My PhD in human factors engineering is still useful and I keep a foothold in some solar and renewable energy projects.
Back to the Cort the Sport story. It is not so uncommon - have kids, give life to kids, family, and work and one day look at a photo and wonder what the hell happened to me?
|me in fall 2007 - the photo that started it all|
Fast-forward to me as mom. First I tried to be a stay-at-home mom, and when that wasn't a good fit, I taught as an adjunct in the Department of Engineering Education at Virginia Tech. That inspired me to return to finish a PhD, which I did successfully in 2007. Unfortunately, with a dissertation, there is a lot of sitting on one's butt in front of the computer. I found myself in the worst shape of my life, carrying around extra pounds and feeling terrible.
On May 4, 2008, I had the lightbulb moment. I walked into the Weight Club in town, hired a trainer AND started this blog. It began under the name "unblobbing" as I felt...well...like a blob. Hence the URL of unblob.blogspot.com. It morphed to unblobbed, and eventually to Cort the Sport (my dad's nickname for me). There is more about it here.
The trainer set out a challenge to run a half marathon, and I have never looked back. Since then, I've run everything from 5Ks to the Boston Marathon (2013), trail races to road races.
In 2009, I branched out to triathlon, trying a novice-only race late that summer, and finishing second overall out of 136 competitors. I was HOOKED. In 2010 I completed five triathlons (Sprint and Olympic) finishing the 4th overall master's female in the Virginia Triathlon Series (VTS). In 2011 I raced nine triathlons (Sprint through Half Ironman) including USAT Olympic Distance Nationals where I qualified for Team USA. In 2012 I raced a full season capped with a 3rd place finish at Sprint Nationals, 10th place finish at ITU Olympic Distance Worlds in New Zealand, second place overall female in the Virginia Triathlon Series and a USAT All-American spot. In 2013 I raced Nationals and Worlds (London) as well as the Boston Marathon. Here are all the race results and race reports. In 2014 I had some downtime to have external iliac artery endofibrosis surgically corrected but still managed to rally back into race shape and earn another spot on Team USA for Chicago. 2015 was capped by finishing as the top female in the Virginia Maryland Triathlon Series and another USA Triathlon All American award. In 2016 I was the female overall winner at three local triathlons, which felt good at age 49! I was on the podium (overall or masters) at 11 races and set a half marathon PR for myself running a 1:39:45 at the Star City Half.
It's not always smooth sailing and athletes know injuries come with the territory no matter how careful and attentive one is. I've weathered peroneal tendonitis, IT band issues, glute med/TFL strains, two fibular fractures, and that iliac artery vascular problem.
I have an excellent coach in Jim McGehee (One-on-One Endurance) and I've worked with him since 2009. He's a 20+ year veteran who does the tricky work of planning out the multisport training in a way that works with life and family.
I'm pleased to be sponsored by Solar Connexion (solar contracting) of Blacksburg, Virginia. I have the backing of many friends and family, and am grateful for their support!
My goal for this blog, and for my journey in general, is to encourage people to find a healthy lifestyle that includes activities that they enjoy and that incite passion! There is a sport or activity out there for everyone, be it triathlon or table tennis or hiking. Furthermore, I hope readers of this blog will dream a little bigger or reach a little deeper and reap the rewards of the journey!