Lynn Douglas

Name: Lynn Douglas



Tell us about yourself.

I’m 51 and reside in Camillus. I am a Vermont native and moved to the Syracuse area in late 1995, from Connecticut. With 28 years of tenure, I work for Verizon as a Service Manager. My team provides contract governance and technical support for 17 worldwide healthcare clients. Locally, I’m proud to be on the Mountain Goat committee and board. I was probably one of the first 30 members of the CNY Tri Club and a club officer for a few years. I’m a dog lover and I’m destined to get another dog in my life, perhaps in 2014……

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

I’ve been involved with triathlons since 2002. Close friends of mine had just started doing triathlons and they were having a ball and feeling the benefits of cross-training. With my running background, I decided to join in the fun, and added swimming and cycling to my training. I was confident I could swim, with work, having grown up on Lake Champlain and having ridden the hills of Burlington, Vermont, on a 10 speed bike when I was a student at the University of Vermont.

Who is your hero?

My local hero is Samuel Clemence, age 75. Sam is a soulmate Lake Placid Ironman training partner. Ironman pal Rich O’Neil and I went to Sam’s retirement party recently as he retired as a Syracuse University Meredith Professor within the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering. I was deeply touched to hear firsthand about his enthusiastic transfer of knowledge, inspiration, passion, critical thinking and integrity to his student base over the years. He has shared this same positive spirit and tenacity through his accomplishments with his triathlon “students” and family.

What is your athletic background?

I was the captain of my small high school cross country and track teams. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed many sports including skiing (my passion), cross-county skiing, snowshoeing, hiking, kayaking, waterskiing and scuba diving in addition to swimming, biking and running. I would love to try winter hiking in the future. I’ve enjoyed building on distance over the years. You all know that once you do your first 5K run, your interest and crazy aspirations turn to the next goal and others often inspire you or talk you into more. I’ve run 11 marathons (excluding Ironman), including a couple of Boston marathons, and have completed numerous triathlons, including Lake Placid Ironman twice. Some of my PRs are: 10K, 45:37, Auburn Great Race; half marathon, 1:40, Tucson; marathon, 3:43, Mohawk Hudson; half Ironman, 5:27 Tupper Lake; Ironman, 12:35, Lake Placid.

What are your triathlon strengths and weaknesses?

I’d have to say running is my strongest sport, not because I am fast but because I’ve been through so many miles that I’ve learned what my body can and can’t do. Furthermore, I have thoroughly enjoyed the mental outlet, cardio value and social benefit of the sport. I’m excited that I still have plenty to learn and to improve with my cycling and swimming.

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

My first triathlon in 2002 was the St. Croix VI sprint triathlon on a rented mountain bike. I remember the island-start swim and large waves with tropical rain pummeling my back. I was thrilled that I wasn’t doing the slick-road half Ironman course, including the “Beast.” I also had a ball when I met and chatted with pro Joanna Zeiger’s husband out on the bike. He was doing his first tri too.

What is your favorite race and why?

Ironman Lake Placid 2005. I had massive butterflies in my stomach as I arrived in Lake Placid. I vividly remember hitting the point that I knew I was ready for the race–I had gone to Placid Planet around 5 a.m. the day prior to the race to get my derailleur tweaked and I cycled out onto Mirror Lake Drive alone to work through my gears when I saw the fog lift on Mirror Lake to reveal the red tetrahedral buoys at the swim turn. What a pure, unexpected and glorious fog-lift “sign” to know I was ready! Also, I burst out laughing on race day when I was in the water with the helicopter overhead and the swim was so tight my first strokes were the dog paddle. I knew my family would laugh at me if they saw me on TV. Lastly, after the race I was so amazed and fulfilled by the athletic goals set and results accomplished by other people after I shared my Ironman journey story with them.

What was your worst race and why?

Thankfully, I haven’t had many bad race experiences. For my first marathon, the Vermont City Marathon, after having been encouraged by Lindsey Reider and Eric Prager to run the event, I gratefully ran 22 miles with Bobby Angotti. I crossed the finish line happily only to have my entire thighs and calves seize up with cramping. I had to be carried away; I quickly learned about electrolyte replacement.

What races are on your race calendar for 2014?

Nationals, Olympic distance in Wisconsin; Henderson Harbor tri (love this one); Skinnyman and others.

What are this year’s goals?

I am focusing on Olympic distances, speed work and perhaps a half Ironman, which is in tune with my training buddy Monique Cuyler. Professionally, I am working on my PMP (Project Management Professional) certification by year’s end, which is a large commitment.

In five years you hope to… :

I hope to enjoy great health and new athletic accomplishments with varying locations and venues, as part of a balanced life. Another Ironman may be in the future…2015? I’d like to continue to inspire and assist others to achieve memorable athletic accomplishments, at any level.

Something most people don’t know about you:

I once roller skated for 24 hours for a charitable cause when I was a teenager. That might have been my first endurance experience.

What triathlon has taught you:

Triathlon has brought thorough enjoyment to me alongside great friends! The triathlon journeys have been such an important part of my life and balance. The hard work, laughter and memories have been amazing. Triathlon buddies over the years include Sam Clemence, Rich O’Neil, MJ Reinhart, Karen Allen-Turner, Lynn Festa, Monique Cuyler, Robin Cottrell, Ann Haley, Marlene Cleary, Sue Shopiro, the Ginny and Bob Burton cellar cycling crew and my Camillus neighborhood running ladies.

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