2017 Grand Rapids Triathlon Recap

June 18th, 2017 by Kaitlyn Patterson

–By Elizabeth Kayfish

 The Grand Rapids Triathlon was this past Sunday (June 11th) in Ada, Michigan. For those who raced it, they would probably agree with me and say it was quite a challenging race day. The temperatures were in the 90’s , the wind was brutal, and the sun was beaming down. Even with these conditions, many of our teammates had a successful race.

Even with a tough race day, I have to say that I have always had a positive experience racing at Grand Rapids Triathlon; I am sure others can agree with that statement. This year was my second year racing the half iron distance and I can’t wait to go again next year. This race was very well directed and there were numerous volunteers and supporters. There is no way I could have made it through the half without all the volunteers at the aide stations, the generous families with hoses for us to run through, or the on course cheering of teammates and friends. I’d recommend this race to anyone who hasn’t raced in it next year.

As for me? I was able to PR by 30 minutes this year and place 2nd in my age group, even with these brutal conditions. I was really excited about this and I have to give a huge thanks to our coaches at Athletic Mentors for that one! They really inspired me to try my hardest and gave me the guidance to break the six hour mark.
We had quite a few other teammates place and race well on Sunday. Congratulations to everyone who raced and successfully made it through the heat! Below are some highlights on top finishers.
Sprint Highlights
Jeff Nordquist, 2nd male overall
Todd Anthes, 3rd masters male
Danielle Nye, 1st female and 2nd overall sprint aquabike
Gr tri anthes
Olympic Highlights
Kathy Braginton, 2nd AG
braginton GR
Half Highlights
Tammy Shuler 1st AG
Elizabeth Kayfish 2nd AG
Lindsey Lilley and Dave Stebbins: 2nd relay
GR tri2GR tri 3


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Training While Pregnant

June 14th, 2017 by Kaitlyn Patterson

–By Lindsey Lilley

    My husband and I are expecting our first child in November and we couldn’t be more excited. This change has also brought a new aspect into training, training while pregnant. This is my first pregnancy so I had NO IDEA what to expect or how my body would react. I spent a lot of time reading blogs by women who have led an active lifestyle before/during/after pregnancy and learned A LOT and it was nice to get a lot of different perspectives. This is a brief summary of my first trimester training.

              Have you ever been hung-over, taken a sleeping pill and had to go potty 24/7 all at the same time? That is exactly what I felt like forweeks straight. I wasn’t going to let this be an excuse to not train because 1) Staying active is important for the health of our growing human and myself. 2) I want my body as strong as possible for labor and delivery (OUCH!) 3) There are still events I want to participate in this year. It wasn’t easy to get the workouts going. Not easy at all. It took a LOT of arguing and negotiations with myself to get started every day.  Once I finally started, my swimming, biking, running and lifting sessions were when I felt best. Even though my workout time is when I felt my “best” it didn’t mean it got easier to convince myself to get going, I just did it. As an athlete I think it’s fair to say we are all used to doing things we don’t always want to do but know we should do.

Lindsey nicole

              10 weeks came and it was like a switch was flipped. The nauseous and exhaustion phase had passed, I was finally starting to feel like myself again. I was able to put more energy and effort into my training sessions. I’ve completed two races so far (Kent City Ridge Run 15K and 5/3rd Riverbank Run 25K) and look forward to “racing” throughout the summer and early fall. My times will be slower, I’ll be rounder but having my little workout partner with me this racing season is beyond spectacular.

              Disclaimer: I did get the OK from my physician to continue training as long as my heart rate didn’t get too elevated for an extended amount of time, I wasn’t having any health issues/complications and I didn’t deprive my body of oxygen for too long.

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A Key to the Marathon- Always have a Plan B

June 12th, 2017 by Kaitlyn Patterson

–By Danielle Nye

After wrapping up the tri season last fall I decided I would try a marathon this year. Many of my experienced running friends and teammates recommended the Bayshore Marathon. I signed up as soon as the registration opened and set out to start building my running endurance for the long race ahead. This would be my longest run to date and I wouldn’t be able to control all the factors on race day. In order to help keep my mental game strong during the race I decided to try something different. Instead of just setting one goal, I would set three goals for my race. My A goal would be 3:30-3:35, my B goal would 3:35-3:40, and the C goal was to finish no matter what and be proud of my accomplishment.

nye bayshoreI lined up at Bayshore feeling prepared and ready to conquer the marathon. I took off following closely to my pacing plan. Everything was going really well and at the halfway mark I was convinced I was going to have a great race. At the 21.2 checkpoint my husband shouted that I had only five miles left and if I kept the pace I would have my Boston Qualifier! And then it hit. My quads buckled and I struggled to start running again. I walked through the next aid station and felt like five miles might as well have been a hundred. After a minute or two, I decided to keep going no matter what it took. If I could keep going I would still be able to make my B goal. As the sun beat down and other runners started to walk around me, I kept running. It was a slow run and my mind was screaming to stop. But I kept it going until I saw the track and made it to the finish line with my B goal still intact.

When things get hard during a race it seems your mind starts to think about quitting. I found that by setting three attainable goals during longer races it helps to keep your mental strength going even when the race starts to hurt you physically. It is important to set these goals with your current fitness in my mind and to be realistic about your ability. Having a range of goals kept me going during the hardest race I have tackled so far. Even though I did not get the BQ I was after I was able to finish my race and feel the satisfaction of completing my first marathon.

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What to expect when you’re expecting…Lumberjack100

June 7th, 2017 by Kaitlyn Patterson

–By Collin Snyder, Team Athletic Mentors cyclist

On paper, Lumberjack is one of the “easier” NUE races. With no major climbs and just 3 laps of 33 miles of fun single track, it can look like a cake walk, but it’s not. Lumberjack is hard. Really hard. With 90 miles or so of single track, you never get a break. With the race just around the corner, here are some hopefully helpful tips to make Michigan’s most famous 100miler just a little bit easier.

In addition to preparing with hours and hours of training, make sure your bike is just as ready. Make sure your chain/cassette/chain ring are in great condition, tires are perfect with new sealant, and brakes have new pads. If there is something that you’ve been holding off fixing, it will break out there.  Most importantly of all, don’t wait until the last minute. You’ll rub your local bike shop the wrong way if you show up Friday morning asking for a shock rebuild and a replacement Chris King freehub body.

Tent Area:

Lumberjack 100 is somewhat unique in terms of NUE races because instead of one giant lap, you do three. This presents some pluses and minuses. The down side is, like the Siren’s Song in The Odyssey, the thought of passing the starting area fully stocked with cold beer, camping chairs and team tents can draw you in for a DNF. The first pass is rather easy, the second pass takes some willpower.

LJ tents

The up side of passing this area multiple times in the race is it provides an opportunity to fuel up, re-stock on supplies, lube your chain and chamois (preferably with different products), and fix anything that broke on the previous lap.  It is good practice to bring a bag with an extra kit, rain gear, some tools, first aid, spare tire, a few CO2’s and tubes. Hopefully you’ll never touch it, but it’s there in case you slash a tire after an epic downpour it will be there. If you have a cooler, stock it with lots of ice and bottles for each lap. I prefer to ride with a new set of dry gloves each lap as 8 hours of sweat will make for some beat up hands.

Fuel Up:

When you see someone else eating, eat. In 100 miles, you can easily burn 10,000 calories, and it’s almost impossible to stay in the positive. Same thing can be said for hydration. If you want to make it to the third lap without feeling like this “stupid race” will never end, you need to do your best to start water and fuel intake early and often. Once you go past this point, it’s hard to come back.

And don’t try anything fancy/new. Race day is no time to experiment on fuel. If you normally only eat granola bars and gels for races, trying to mimic your buddy’s “highly successful” McDonald’s McDoubles and “carb-rich” Budlight only plan may not be the wisest (although if it works for him, whom am I to judge). Have food that is light on the stomach that packs more than just simple carbs. Gels are great for a pick me up, but your stomach will start rejecting them when the miles add up. Real food like sandwiches are the better long term choice.

Get In and Out:

The first NUE race I did, I looked at my moving time vs finish time, and it was over an hour difference. This time was spent recovering, eating, and relaxing. That is a lot of time that could have been spent spinning at 4mph, adding to the overall goal of finishing 100 miles. When you watch the top guys go, they are in and out in under a minute. While this may be a bit extreme for someone just looking to finish, anything more than 5 minutes makes getting up and rolling harder and harder.

Take your time: Lumberjack is won over 7 hours, not the first 7 minutes. If you find yourself  going Iceman Pace with your heart rate pegged, back off. My best NUE race ever, I just rode like it was a Sunday stroll until a 2/3rds into the race, followed by passing every single speeder but one in the final 30 miles. Being a jerk 4 miles in because the guy in front of you made you put a foot down is not going to make a world a difference in your race, and chances are you’ll ride with him the rest of the race anyways which makes for an awkward 8 hours.

It’s Hard:

I’ve done around 15 NUE races and never once have I crossed the finish line and said that was easy. One of the top NUE Pro’s was quoted as saying there’s never an NUE race that he hasn’t wanted to quit at least once during the 100 miles. Know that everyone you’re riding with is probably feeling the same way. Just keep spinning (and eating and drinking) and soon enough you’ll get a coveted Lumberjack Finisher’s Patch.

LJ patch

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Fueling for Performance

June 1st, 2017 by Kaitlyn Patterson

By Elaine Sheikh

People enter the world of endurance sports for a lot of different reasons.  Some common ones include: weight loss, the desire to maintain an active lifestyle, and the desire to have a competitive outlet.  It is important to be cognizant of your goals in the sport – if you aren’t you may fall into the trap of living your life in conflict to those goals.

elaine roadNot that many years ago, I was training for performance.  However, I refused to fuel properly to meet my goals.  Having those two key ingredients to racing success at odds with each other wreaked havoc on my body.  Overuse injuries, undoubtedly the result of overtraining and underfueling, plagued me.  Even now, years later, my body is much more fragile than that of my peers and it doesn’t take a lot for me to suffer one injury after another.  Additionally, I started to notice issues with distance training.  I would become incredibly weak during workouts because I refused to fuel during them.  Not an issue if you’re doing a 30 minute easy run, but definitely an issue if you are hammering out a 20-miler.  It’s taken years for me to come to terms with fueling my body for performance.  Here’s what I learned.

In the book “The Well-Built Triathlete,” Matt Dixon spells out the lessons it’s taken me years to put into action.  Nutrition and fueling are two wholly different, yet synergistic, things.  Your nutrition comprises your day-to-day food choices.  Fueling is eating specific things during specific time windows to maximize performance and recovery.  Clearly, you cannot achieve your full potential as an athlete if your nutrition is terrible, but fueling is something that many athletes do not focus enough on.  For me, separating my fueling from nutrition allowed me to begin to eat enough to reach my performance goals.  I picture fueling as putting high octane fuel in a sports car.  You can’t make it around the track with your tank on empty, and you can’t get away with just putting junk in the tank either.  Viewing my body as a high-performance engine and treating it as such was the single most effective mindset that allowed me to break through my mental barriers surrounding food.

Fueling: Unless you are attempting to become a fat-adapted athlete, it is recommended to fuel before workouts to maximize your efficiency.  The pre-training window for fuel is variable.  Experts recommend eating 1.5-3 hours before beginning your workout.  However, if you read my last post about being a time-crunched athlete, you can bet I don’t eat breakfast at 1 am.  A quick snack that is approximately half carb and ¼ each of protein and fat and balances out to 200-400 calories is a great way to pre-fuel for your workout.  Depending on the intensity of the workout, this can be consumed 15-30 minutes before you begin.  During training, recommendations range from 30-60 grams of carbohydrates per hour.  It’s important to keep yourself fueled throughout workouts!  I struggle to eat gels and solid foods so I recommend using a liquid calorie source such as Infinit to reach your calorie goals without gastrointestinal upset. Post-workout it is essential to eat within 60 minutes (preferably 30) of the end of the workout.  A ratio of 3:1 carbs to protein is ideal.  This will help jumpstart your recovery.

Nutrition is its own incredibly complex topic.  I won’t talk about it now or this post could become a book!  However, don’t forget to pay attention to your daily diet to be the healthiest, most wholesome athlete you can be.




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Feeding Off the Crowd at Boston

May 4th, 2017 by Kaitlyn Patterson

–By Tammy Shuler    

Boston marathon, marathon Monday. The day that has been looked forward to since the qualifying race you ran the year before. So many months of training, so much money spent on shoes, travel, hotels and hours spent training.  This year’s Boston marathon was no different. Thousands of runners meet in a small New England town, Hopkinton, arriving by bus, train or car. Many standing out in the elements for hours waiting for the late morning start. The weather can play a big role in your marathon result. This year’s weather was great for spectators, but not so good for a northern person. It was in the high 60′s, humidity 85% with a tailwind predicted (sounded great).

I was excited to be there, smiling ear to ear. Cheering on  the people in the wave before me as they started their race. My wave started and all was well, but soon the heat began to take its toll. My feet were tammy boston2hot, I started cramping about mile 12, even though I was following my hydration plan. The tail wind offered no cooling effect. I was not alone in this cramping issue as the med tents were packed even at mile 8 and people were walking. One person I came upon was attempting the race on crutches. Another had a walking boot on. I myself had just gotten over pneumonia weeks before and my friend had a  hamstring injury, but we showed up for that start and made it to the finish. 

The crowds were amazing, packed, screaming, cheering us on. The more you smiled the more they cheered. So that’s what I did. And it made a very hard race bearable. We would not be denied our finish and that coveted Boston marathon medal.

tammy bostonI came upon Karen Smires a pro triathlete and  I met Molly Huddle an Olympian. So my advise is if you are having a hard time, look to the crowd and…


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What Being a “Fat Adapted” Athlete Really Means

April 25th, 2017 by Kaitlyn Patterson
–By Erin Young, Triathlete     Of course we all want to burn that fat to be lean, but there are dozens of reasons that being a better butter burner will make you a better athlete. Ever have GI distress (bloating, vomiting, bonking, etc. ) three fourths through your marathon? Are you filling your pockets with gels and bars to  go ride for a couple of hours?
gu runner

Contrary to what most of us have learned, these pouches of sugar, called “Gu” or “gels”, are not necessary or even healthy for athletes.

“Efficiency” is usually thought of as doing something well with little amount of effort. In endurance sports nutrition, this boils down to being able to burn more fat and less carbohydrate for energy. Why would we want to do this? Because at any given time, most trained athletes are carrying about 1,500 – 2,000 calories of carbohydrates and 80,000-plus calories of fat. Yep, even speedy little Meb has that much fat in storage. The trick is teaching the body to love to run on fat and use it at higher intensities. This is done through metabolic efficiency training to build a stockpile of fat-burning enzymes- the “machinery” to make it work. Voilà – the ultrarunner, cyclist or triathlete, becomes much less dependent on consuming mass amounts of carbohydrates during the race and has reduced risk of GI distress. Just how do you ignite this fat fire? The single most important contributor to improve your ability to use fat as fuel is diet. A diet low in refined foods, specifically carbohydrates, moderate in protein and fiber as well as higher in fat is key to priming metabolic efficiency . Yep, fats! Not the artificial, industrially produced partially hydrogenated vegetable oils, like corn, safflower, sunflower, or canola. Not crisco or margarine. Those are examples of the “bad” when we speak of bad fats. You can safely enjoy the real fats. Fats, included in meats, avocado, ghee (oh so good for cooking!), macadamia nuts, etc. Add these delicious fats and proteins into your diet and you will be satiated enough to stop thinking about your next meal. Stay away from “low fat” products and read your labels. Carbohydrate translates to sugar. Even those “healthy” organic dressings and snacks have the bad stuff. Take Newman’s Own balsamic dressing… healthy, right? Look closely at the label Vegetable oil (soybean and/or canola oil). Stick to the real oils, like olive and avocado. The food industry has learned to trick those who want to be healthy. But athletes, fats and protein are your friend. The real fats. Yes, even animal fats. Give your gut a break. Lengthy fasts are not necessary, but giving your gut a break and laying off the mid meal snacks can tell your metabolism to use the fuel we all have plenty of… fat! If you’re hungry before mealtime,  choose a small nutrient dense snack that can get you to you the next meal. Some great small snacks that stop the growling are:
  • Boiled eggs
  • Macadamia nuts, walnuts, almonds, Brazil nuts
  • Celery with almond butter
  • Hard cheeses
Get enough sleep. Your body does a lot of work at rest. You aren’t digesting and the gut can rest. Getting sufficient sleep lets you stay in a fasted state where your body is using fat stores rather than carbohydrates from your last meal. Waking up without having to immediately get a meal is a good sign you are functioning on fat stores. fat graphYou can also train your body to use fat stores through training! Before we get fast, we have to lay the groundwork. Being a metabolically efficient athlete means we have the foundation of which speed is built upon. To find out where you are as a fat burner you will need the help of my friends at Athletic Mentors to perform a metabolic efficiency assessment. You can do this as a runner or cyclist, whichever area you want to become more efficient in. By doing this assessment you will learn what are the most fuel efficient heart rate zone for you. Athletic Mentors can teach you how to build your foundation and reach your full potential. They are currently offering group classes to teach you how to use your own data. They will teach you how to fuel and train for metabolic efficiency. The next Metabolic Efficiency Class will be held May 11th, at 6pm.
100 miler

Zach Bitter, world record holder as the fastest 100 miler on a track, is known for his fat fueled success.

You are meant to burn fats. The average American diet has allowed us to become dependent on carbohydrates to get us through the day, our workouts and races. Take a day to learn about your metabolism, and what you can do to stay healthy and burn the fuel that your body was meant to use. Metabolic efficiency training can help you stabilize your blood sugars, give you steady energy, lose body fat and allow you to run faster at a lower heart rate. All great results, so think about incorporating ME training into your base training. All you really need to start your ME training once you get the test, is your running shoes, a heart rate monitor and your body fat. If you have questions, or want to schedule a test check out the website at www.athleticmentors.com or contact erin@athleticmentors.com with any questions about metabolic efficiency testing.     The post What Being a “Fat Adapted” Athlete Really Means appeared first on Team Athletic Mentors.

Tips for Early Morning Workouts

April 18th, 2017 by Kaitlyn Patterson

–By Elaine Sheikh, Triathlete

Most of us endurance athletes are beyond time-crunched – balancing work, family, social obligations and often training 10+ hours a week. Most of us don’t look forward to the alarm clock going off at 4:00am for that morning workout. Here’s some of my tips for making those workouts as pleasant as possible:

1) Prep your breakfast in advance! I avoid doing more than a few fasted workouts every week. Usually a banana or toast with nut butter or a larabar are enough to get me going for the workout. I’m a dedicated user of one of our team sponsors, Infinit. Often I can go fasted into a workout and still have plenty of energy with a bottle or two of one of my customized blends during the workout. However, when the workout is done and you have to fly through the shower and get to work, it’s important to have breakfast pre-made so you have time to eat something wholesome and don’t find yourself craving a donut on the way to work.

- I will often scramble a couple of eggs with nutritional yeast (those of you who tolerate dairy could use cheese instead) and sautéed veggies. That plus a cup of cooked rice and some coconut oil will elaine runningstill be surprisingly palatable after being refrigerated overnight.

- Another go-to is overnight oats. Use quick cooking oats and a milk or milk substitute of your choice in a 1-1 ratio. I add a scoop of green powder, nuts, fruits, cinnamon, and honey in whatever proportions I’m feeling. Put in the refrigerator overnight and it’ll be perfect to eat cold the next morning.

- One of my morning-of breakfasts is a simple protein shake. Milk or milk substitute, frozen fruit, nut butter, greens, and protein powder will keep you full until lunch and takes 2 minutes to throw together in the morning.

- A leftover baked sweet potato with a generous serving of nut butter or coconut oil, is another great breakfast. Depending on your caloric needs you may want to supplement with a shake or an egg or two.

2) Prep your workout gear the night before
-If I’m going to bike, the trainer is already set up with my kit and heart rate monitor next to it and my laptop and speakers set up the night before. If I’m running or swimming my gear is gathered and sitting next to the door. Nothing is more frustrating than getting to the pool at 5 am and realizing you don’t have your goggles!

3) Prioritize your sleep
- Nothing sets you up for failure like staying up until midnight and still expecting to wake up at 4 am refreshed and ready to train. As simple as it sounds, make sure you are streamlining your evenings so that you are able to sleep and be fresh in the morning. The night before is just as important as the morning of in determining your training success.

I hope this was helpful. Happy training!

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Life Lessons from Running and Triathlons

April 10th, 2017 by Kaitlyn Patterson

-By Brian Reynolds, Team Athletic Mentors triathlete

Over the past 16 years of being a runner and triathlete I have learned many life lessons.  I would like to share the 5 key life lessons I’ve learned.

  • Overcoming adversity – Throughout our life we will always have to deal with challenges whether they’re big or small.  When training for a marathon or Ironman event there were always winter run brianchallenges to overcome.  There were days when I had to run in snowy 5 deg F weather even though it was freezing and uncomfortable.  I had days when I didn’t feel like training due to fatigue or just not being in the mood but I still did the workout anyways. There were very challenging workouts that made anxious before even doing it.  I had injuries that forced me to limit my training.  However, I made the necessary adjustments to my training to help me stay on track for the racing season.  My determination and passion to achieve my goals help motivate me to overcome this adversity.


  • Patience – Sometimes we have to wait a long time before accomplishing our biggest dreams.  For example, my dream was to win a marathon.  In 2011, I entered the Kalamazoo marathon which was my first and I won it!  Some people will say beginners luck; however, I was a runner for 10 years prior to the marathon which made me no beginner.  During those 10 years I’ve accumulated over 15,000 miles and raced distances from the 5k to the half marathon.  I wouldn’t have won the Kalamazoo marathon if I just started running the year before.  I needed those 10 years to improve as a runner to help prepare me for that moment in Kalamazoo.  The tiny improvements I made day to day added up to accomplishing my dream because I gave myself the time to develop. Patience will always payoff in the end.


  • Setting SMART goals – Setting goals for the season are very important.  I always try to set challenging BUT attainable goals.  Goals can be a great motivation tool and gives an athlete accountability.  However, setting an unrealistic short term goal will not help you have a better season.  Instead, an unrealistic goal can sabotage a season by causing an athlete to overtrain and/or be disappointed because their goal was not met.  These unrealistic goals are best saved for long term goals because given time and persistence they may be attainable.

When I was training for the 2014 Kalamazoo Marathon my goal was to run a 2:30 which would be a 4 minute PR.  As the season progressed, I was having good workouts so I thought a 2:28 goal was doable.  Later in the season I started to overreach a bit by pushing myself a little too hard in workouts.  I went into the race in a more fatigued state and paced it too fast.  As a result I didn’t have my best race.  Looking back I wish I had a coach to help me set a realistic goal and monitor my progress to make sure I was on track for achieving my goal.

  • Brian en route to his Kalamazoo Marathon victory

    Brian en route to his Kalamazoo Marathon victory

    Work ethic – This is the #1 attribute that I learned while being a runner and triathlete.  All of my achievements were due to the hard work and dedication I put into my training. The more work I put in training the faster I got.  To help myself stay dedicated during High School Cross Country and Track I started a consecutive running streak which meant I ran at least 1 mile everyday.  My running streak is still strong going to this day.  If it’s one thing that I’ve learned when it comes to running or triathlons an athlete cannot get lucky and have a great race without putting in the work.  The work you put in is a direct result of how well you perform in the races!

  • Talent does not determine success – My favorite Steve Prefontaine quote is “Success isn’t how far you got, but the distance you traveled from where you started.”  Steve is known as one of the greatest US distance runners in history.  Even though Steve was a very talented runner his quote suggests that success should be based on a athlete’s growth and improvement.  For instance, an athlete’s success should not be based on their 5k time but rather the improvements they’ve made from where they started.  We shouldn’t try to compare ourselves with others because it really doesn’t matter.  What really matters is how far you’ve come as an athlete and person. Don’t get me wrong I’m guilty of sometimes comparing myself to other ‘fast’ athletes.  These ‘fast’ athletes do give me inspiration and motivation to become better.  However, my measuring stick for success is the progress I’ve made over the past 16 years.

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Team Athletic Mentors Ready to Triumph with Greenware Multisport Sponsorship

March 24th, 2017 by Team AM OAM
Watch for Team Athletic Mentors new look at a Multisport race near you this year.

Watch for Team Athletic Mentors new look at a Multisport race near you this year.

Athletic Mentors — the training and team management company responsible for getting Michigan triathletes known across the region as “podium performers” — is delighted to launch its newest team partnership catering to Michigan multisport events and active living.

The team core of Michigan amateur triathletes, cyclists, runners and Nordic skiers will be suiting up with presenter-level support from Greenware for the 2017 season. It’s the beginning of a partnership that promises to ‘keep it green’ in Michigan.

“Greenware is in it for the long haul and so are we. It’s a perfect pairing with a forward-thinking brand designed to preserve earth’s resources while providing on-the-go packaging,” said team Manger Cheryl Sherwood of Athletic Mentors.

Greenware is a registered trademark of FabriKal, a Kalamazoo packaging company that caters to restaurant, event and entertainment service with an exclusive line of annually renewable drink cups, lids, portion containers and on-the-go boxes made entirely from plants. FabriKal is privately held and home to more than 800 employees.

For 2017, Athletic Mentors has elected to be the title sponsor for the team in keeping with the expansion of its Richland training facility, which now serves both elite athletes as well as regular active lifestyle seekers. With the expansion, AM now offers adult fitness programs, classes, metabolic testing and sporting camps. Previously, Athletic Mentors has managed the award-winning Bissell cycling team, the Priority Health Team and OAM-Now.

“Athletic Mentors is in a growth phase, and there’s no better way to show people what we do than titling the team – the proof is on the podium, so to speak,” Sherwood said.  The new Athletic Mentors-Greenware Team will feature the same core of talent as prior iterations such as OAM and Priority Health teams.

“With the support of Greenware, we will take this organization to the next level in multisport performance. Our goal is to motivate Michiganders to get off the couch and hit the road or trail.”

Headed by John Kittredge, Greenware’s company ethos includes active living in Michigan’s environmentally preserved trails and natural resources.

“Anything we can do to promote active, healthy lifestyles in Michigan fits with our company mission to act responsibly as corporate citizens and contribute to both the well-being of our communities and the environment overall,” says Kittredge, himself a competitive cyclist.

“Our family has been innovative in environmental stewardship and alternate transportation, and we’d love to help motivate our employees and neighbors toward healthy lifestyles that indirectly impact both sectors. Learning to value the environment does not come from sitting on the couch,” Kittredge said.

In addition to team registration at numerous multisport events across Michigan this year, from Barry Roubaix to Michigan Titanium, the two companies also look forward to community outreach through appearances at schools, community events and athletic clinics.

For more information on Team events, opportunities or appearances, visit http://www.teamathleticmentors.com.

For a media interview or speaker scheduling, contact
Cheryl Sherwood, Co-Owner
Athletic Mentors
or email: Cheryl@athleticmentors.com


Athletic Mentors LLC, is a west Michigan-based athletic training and sports management company that offers individual training, team training programs, clinics, elite hockey programs and sports management services.  For more information about Athletic Mentors or becoming a supporter, visit www.AthleticMentors.com.

Greenware believes that life is about sharing moments and Greenware® cups help make that time special. Whether you’re planning a party or anytime you gather at home, our stylish disposable cups make every day more convenient and beautiful. We have fresh, fashionable designs to fit your every season and celebration. Unlike traditional plastic cups, Greenware® is 100% made from annually renewable plants, not petroleum. They are the responsible disposable cups you’ll want to show off. Visit http://www.fabri-kal.com/product-solutions/greenware/ to learn more.

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