With zero racing action for the foreseeable future and our “Last Weekend Now” column on hiatus indefinitely, we’ll be checking in with a pro every week to see how they’re coping—and hopefully learn a couple of fun facts. This week, the United States’ Matt Hanson checks in from Storm Lake, Iowa. Here’s what the Ironman champion had to say about life through the pandemic.
My first race of 2020 would have been… I was actually fortunate enough to squeeze in Campeche 70.3 prior to the shutdown. I was planning on doing Galveston 70.3 and then Ironman Australia to finish out the spring.
I’m social distancing with… my wife Ashley and two dogs, Rocky and Zoey.
My favorite indoor workout is… I have been enjoying a treadmill workout where you keep rolling through a cycle of Ironman pace, 70.3 pace, and then max effort. So you are trying to recover at Ironman pace and you need to try to get the HR down before you ramp up to 70.3 pace for the next round.
If I wasn’t a pro triathlete I would be… Prior to triathlon, I was a professor of exercise science. I would probably be doing the same thing if I wasn’t competing as a pro. At this point, I don’t really plan on returning to the university setting. I have been enjoying coaching a lot and hope to be able to do that full-time once I can’t keep up with the pack anymore.
My favorite post-workout meal is… A fruit smoothie with First Endurance Ultragen recovery mixed, a three-egg omelet, and a coffee (or two…). I have this pretty much every day after training is finished.
One change I’ve made that will probably stick is… My wife and I have tried a new recipe every night for dinner since we first started self-isolating after 70.3 Campeche. It has actually been fun. Once the pandemic is over, we are going to try for at least three new recipes per week.
The last thing I watched on TV… yeah, I had to turn the TV on quick so I could say it was the news. The last show I watched prior is too embarrassing to admit. My wife has control of the remote most nights.
I knew I could be good at triathlon when… I qualified for Kona at my first Ironman (and first major triathlon).
It would surprise everyone to know that… I didn’t start swimming until I was 25.
The last thing that made me laugh… Zoey, our 11-year-old miniature schnauzer, dove into our egress window well yesterday chasing a baby bird. She pretends to be too old to jump up on the couch, but when she turns into her old self when she thinks no one is watching. By the time I got outside and jumped down the window to pick her out of it, there were two flapping wings hanging out of her mouth. She has no teeth left so I was able to get the bird out of her mouth and off it went. I found it funny, Zoey snubbed me the rest of the day for taking her prize away from her.
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