Karen Rasmussen

Time with Boost Coaching:  Just over three years
Sporting background prior to starting:

I had swum competitively as a kid and had always been pretty active but not overly serious in any particular sporting activity as an adult. I did things like the odd run, going to the gym and a tiny bit of mountain biking but my technical skills were, and still are, below average! The biggest thing I had done was a half marathon and a failed attempt at the one day Otago Rail Trail race which I pulled out of at the 75km mark with cramp… most probably from a lack of training!

After watching my brother do Ironman New Zealand (IMNZ) and Ironman Cairns in 2012 I signed up to do IMNZ 2013. I hadn't done any swim training for about 20 years and I didn't really do any regular running either. Less than a year before my first Ironman I had never even ridden a road bike! Eek! In hindsight, I can see that signing up for that first Ironman armed with… well… no experience at all in triathlon… was a pretty crazy thing to do! That’s why I needed a coach!... Enter Andrew Mackay of Boost Coaching!

Initial goal/s & events when I started with Boost:

  1. Finish IMNZ 2013
  2. Learn how to ride a road bike (crucial)!
  3. Learn about triathlon and do some races to prepare for IMNZ (I ended up doing the Ashburton Half Ironman, Lake Wanaka Half Ironman and a few other races in the lead up to IMNZ)

Did you achieve these goals &/or what were the outcomes?

Yes! I have now done 7 half and 3 full Ironmans, have represented NZ in my age group at the ITU Long Distance World Champs and also race for Cycleworld South in the Elite Cycling Series.

How did Boost Coaching help you to achieve these goals?

I had no idea what I was doing when I started and probably wouldn’t have been able to achieve all the results I’ve had without Andy’s help. His coaching has been invaluable. I set my goals and choose the races I want to do and Andy designs my program around my race calendar and adjusts my training depending on how I am progressing and other things I have going on in my life. Andy makes it simple for me. All I need to do is the training he has set.

He has given me advice on all things triathlon including gear, nutrition, recovery, pacing and race planning. He doesn’t make me feel like a pleb if I ask what I think is a stupid question… and I ask a lot of stupid questions!

I don’t live in Auckland so all my coaching is done remotely. Andy uses Training Peaks to set my program and monitor my progress and we catch up by Skype, phone or email when we need to.

Andy was a professional triathlete himself so understands the things we go through as athletes, but he also knows how to coach. I trust in his coaching ability. I have been really happy with my progress in such a short time and I know he has had some amazing results with the other Boost athletes, including helping them get those elusive Kona slots.

Andy is a coach who cares and carefully tailors a training program to the individual athlete. He is friendly, a bit of a hard case and tough when he needs to be. Above all he is professional, and is great at balancing the art and science of coaching.

What are your goals & events as you move forward?

  1. I’m representing NZ at the ITU Long Distance World Champs in Sweden (June 2015)
  2.  I’m doing Challenge Roth (July 2015)
  3. I’m aiming to qualify for the Ironman World Champs in Kona (2016)

Three of my greatest achievements so far while working with Boost are

  1.  Completing three ironmans
  2. Representing NZ in my age group at the ITU Long Distance World Champs in China in 2014
  3. Competing in the Elite Cycling Series in 2014 and 2015

Other comments regarding working with Boost Coaching

As well as the coach, the best thing about Boost Coaching is the Boost crew. They’re a pretty cool bunch of people who train hard but have fun, and I enjoy training with them when I get the chance.