Debby Sullivan races in Xterra World Championship
Debby Sullivan competed in three off-road triathlons this year: Mountain Cup, Indian Peaks in Eldora, and XTERRA USA Championship Ogden/Snowbasin. In Utah she placed 3rd in her age group and was the 23rd female overall; resulting in this weekend’s invite-only race in Hawaii – XTERRA World Championship, at Makena Beach & Golf Resort in Maui, Hawaii.When I talked to Debby last month, she told me she is the most fit she’s ever been in her life. She’s been training hard all year to get to this fitness level; training 550-600 minutes per week. Debby has lived in Winter Park and Fraser for most of her life, minus college years. “I am a true born and raised Winter Park native. My dad Robert Woodbury “Woody” has been here since the 60’s and my mom came in the 70’s.”Debby grew up ski racing at Winter Park Resort at the Competition Center and started running marathons in 2005. In 2007 she ran Pikes Peak marathon. “During all the running races, I always thought it would be fun to do a triathlon but I didn’t road bike.” Then she discovered Xterra.Xterra is all off-road triathlon consisting of a swim, a mountain bike race on different off-road terrain such as single track or jeep roads, then ending with a trail run. In 2007 Debby competed in her first off-road triathlon and loved it. The following summer she researched races and wanted to compete in the Xterra Series to earn points. “I was really excited to get into a full summer racing Xterra. I went out and ran my early season race to kick it off and then two days later found out I was pregnant.”Things were delayed for a bit. But not for long; just five months after having Ashlyn, Debby began training and racing again. This summer Debby raced every Winter Park Bike Series race and is sponsored by Winter Park Real Estate. “My favorite race of the series is Tipperary. Valley Point-to Point is right in there too, but Tipperary and I have always had a good relationship and I just really enjoy that course.” Another aspect of her Xterra training is participating in the Masters swimming program at the Fraser Rec Center. “I started the program at the end of July after I had slight improvements in my swim time. I decided I needed help with my swimming and wanted to try the Masters program. It is inexpensive and a good way to get some coaching. Andy is great. It is nice to have some feedback but also just someone giving me the workout and pushing me.”What’s next after racing in Hawaii at the World Championship: “I will take a little time off to relax and recover after a big season. I will ski and snowshoeing in the winter. I generally work for the Competition Center during the winter. I will run a little more in the winter and swim to get a good off-season base.”Another local athlete, Shawn Garrett of Granby will be racing with Debby in Maui at the World Championship. Good luck Grand County Xterra athletes.
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