Julie Patterson has coached by Endorphin for 10 years by both Michael and Kyle. In these years, she earned her pro card, got married, went to pharmacy school, earned her PhD, and much more. We interviewed Julie about what her work life balance has looked like as well as how her triathlon career has overlapped with the rest of her life. We also discussed what her training has looked like and how her coaching has evolved in the process. Watch our interview with Julie above or read the article below!
Initial Interest in Triathlon
Julie Patterson began her triathlon career in her early teenage years. After her dad invited her brother to enter a triathlon and he declined, Julie said she wanted to enter. She raced using her dad’s 1985 Schwinn bicycle and nearly cried when she saw all the expensive bikes in the transition racks! However, she had nothing to cry about at the end of the race as she took 4th overall female. Along with swimming and playing tennis throughout high school, Julie continued to be interested in the sport of triathlon.
Through some combination of being interested in triathlon and liking it because she was good, it stuck with her. She described triathletes and the people she’s met through the sport as people she naturally gets along with anyway: high achievers with a desire to balance sport and life.
Julie has pursued triathlon at some of the highest levels of competition from a very early stage in her racing career. Her education and career has gone through a variety of stages over this time, though. Julie appreciates the flexibility that her coaching at EF offers, and with her coaches she can always find training time. In fact, Julie says that the rhythm of training has always been helpful for her to come back to. Although the results of triathlon cannot be controlled fully, Julie appreciates having control over her training. If there are stressful or challenging things in her personal or professional life, she always has a workout to look forward to. This allows for a mapped out progression of growth and improvement which carries over into other areas of life.
Julie qualified for her pro card when she placed 2nd at Collegiate Nationals in 2011. It wasn’t hard for Julie to make up her mind- she knew she wanted to take hold of this opportunity. After receiving her card, she began racing Olympic distance before transitioning to the 70.3 distance, which she currently races.
In pro racing, race strategies and mental preparations play a much larger role. Julie mentioned in our interview that when you get separated from a pack in a pro race it may be a long time before you have another athlete to get energized by. Being in this “no-man’s-land” can be mentally challenging in a race. Because of this, her work with Kyle more recently has shifted towards mentally preparing for races as much as their continued strength and endurance based coaching.
We’ve had a blast coaching Julie and can’t wait to see what she does next in the sport!