Janet Ohlsen

September 2011 CNY Triathlon Club-Member Profile

Name: Janet Ohlsen


Tell us about yourself.

I’m a mom, 54, have a son Lars 14, married ummmmthinkthink… 16 years to Hans. After burning out in the advertising field I took a break and now I am a Triathlon Coach and love it! I am an advocate and writer for the stigma of mental illness for www.N.A.M.I.org. I am bipolar. I am also getting involved with www.bringchange2mind.org. These are two websites that are worth visiting sometime if you know someone suffering from mental illness.

How long have you been involved in Triathlon and what made you take it up?

I started getting involved in 2005 after the previous Caz tri in 2004 as I happened to be on a bike ride, saw you guys and thought, “how cool…” It became very therapeutic for me.

Who is your Hero?

Anyone who perseveres after or during emotional/physical illness (there are many out there) who completes a Triathlon of any length. Awesome! Lance Armstrong coming back from cancer.

What is your athletic background?

I have always been involved in team sports in school but got bored and wanted to accomplish singular endurance goals of sorts to keep me engaged. I have a bucket list of biathlon (once so far, loved it) mountain climbing, all forms of x-country skiing, snowshoe running/racing which is totally exhausting but great for off season training.


What are your Triathlon strengths and weaknesses?

Oh boy, running is my weakness, never have been fast. Swimming and cycling are my strengths for my age group. I can hardly wait to be older in January (huh?) and be in a different age group. What a great sport… IT’S OK to get older!

What was your first triathlon and what do you remember most?

Caz tri 2005. A FLAT. There was one of those safety pins from a race number lodged in it! I tried to fix it but had to bail out! I then completed the next year’s YMCA Green Lakes Tri and fell in love.


What is your favorite race and why?

I just finished Lake Placid Ironman 2011, my first. I never dreamed I would do one and talked myself out of it for years. It reminds me that I am strong when I don’t feel well. It was really a dream of mine and one of the highlights of my life.

What was your worst race and why?

I guess if I had pick, Delta Lake 2010; I had a flat BUT this time I could fix it and finish!

What are this year’s goals?

To stay healthy and focus on continuing coaching and racing with an optimistic attitude.

In five years you hope to … :

Make it to the next age group healthy!

Something most people don’t know about you:

I am playing the Cello again after 35 years.

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