A couple of years ago I was lucky to met Mary Eggers. She is one of my favorite people…ever. She has enough spirit for an entire cheerleading squad. Oh, and did I mention she is pretty fast? She recently became a coach for QT2 Systems, and I asked to interview her!
1. So, Mary, you are triathlon famous. Youve been in the biz even longer than me, you even have a picture of Luc Van Lierde winning Ironman Hawaii with you in the background! And named your first born after that record setting stud. How did you get into the sport? And when exactly was it??
I got into this sport believe it or not after having some difficulties with an eating disorder at age 20, after a ten year stint with Bulimia. I came home, got better and was allowed to begin swimming again. At that point I was a burned out post collegiate swimmer with no direction. I saw the Hawaii Ironman on TV (this was in 1994). To me it represented health which I didn’t have at the time. It offered me the opportunity to build my health from square one again. In 1995….. I did my first triathlon!
2. Who is your favorite pro triathlete (we know the QT2 peeps–Tim and Cait Snow, Ethan, Logan, Jessie, Pedro, and Doug are up there) so actually…whose your NEXT favorite??
My favorite professional triathlete is Jessica Jacobs. If you know her story you understand her work ethic and you understand her combined love for her family, her country and her sport. She is honest yet not narcissistic. She’s passionate yet not demeaning.
3. You were a pediatric emergency nurse, you are now a coach, a yoga instructor, race director/announcer, and work tirelessly for the causes close to you (Teens Living with Cancer, your sons education!).
What motivates you to give so much of your time to others?
When I look at that list I think…. Who fits THAT in????? Then I realize…. Oh my! I take every single day in small chunks because when I look at the big picture I faint.
When I came home sick to my parents I was at rock bottom at too early an age. My father steered me into situations that I was caring for others and working with people. Nothing helps pull you up like trying to make someone else’s life better.
My son is “on the spectrum” yet he’s so high functioning that he’s fallen through many cracks. I have learned the hard way that kids with special needs need an advocate because they are at risk for so many things. I walk a fine line between fighting for his opportunities (like meeting Hunter Kemper!!!) and teaching him that he has to work harder than his peers. He didn’t ride two wheels until age 9 and you’d better believe he cherishes every second of being able to do that. Our job as his parents is to raise a good man who is 100% independent. That right there is the biggest driving force of my life.
(Being a race announcer below!)
4. Please tell me how you have so much energy. You are like a 15 year old. Do you nap? Drink ‘Five Hour Energy’s? Much caffeine (coke or coffee?), Do you just not sleep?
I drink two cups (VENTI) of coffee a day. I take a 20 minute nap at 2pm daily. I am in bed by 9.
At the risk of sounding like a Hallmark Card…….I think my energy comes from absolutely loving everything that I do.
5. Any advice for someone wanting to get into the triathlon biz?
Long ago triathlon became my family. I came into this sport a broken girl and the relationships that saved my life are the ones I still have today. This sport has grown tremendously over the past 15 years that I have been in it and we have amazing people here. My advice would be to get into this business because you love it. Be genuine, be realistic and do the right thing. If you can do that…… you will be successful!