2012-11-01 – Elemental Welcomes Ann Lehmkuhler


This month, endurance ace Ann Lehmkuhler joins our coaching staff. Ann is an accomplished swimmer, Runner, and triathlete, and has been a successful coach and trainer for the past few years. We are excited to welcome such a great asset to our team.


In order to introduce our members to Ann, I sat down with her last week for a short chat.


SB: So Ann, you’ve been a competitive athlete for years, what brings you into coaching?


Mainly teaching and a love of sports…it was a natural fit. I’ve been coaching since I was 16. My swim coach at the time noticed I was good at making swimmers more efficient and correcting strokes, So I kind of became an assistant.


After a few years teaching school and starting our family, I decided to get back into it full time.


SB: With that in mind, how does your experience as an athlete help your clients?


I have always been self-coached, and I learned what works and what doesn’t. I’m aware of mental difficulty involved. After I had kids, I  had to rebuild from scratch, which inspired my Running 101 class. Being a mom, I’m aware of the difficult balance of responsibility… the difficulty of fitting it all in.


SB: Your class, Elemental Endurance, is focused on wintertime training for endurance athletes. Who else can benefit from this training?


Well, people who like early mornings! It’s especially appropriate for people looking to increase their endurance, but also cardiovascular health and general fitness. The class open to people of all fitness levels.


SB: If you were to line out the two biggest mistakes you see people make in prepping for spring and summer racing, what would they be?


#1 Not planning ahead of time, and trying to get ready to race in a month. It’s just not enough time. Winter is good time for base training, learning new skills, and refining existing skills. You can’t learn to swim 2 weeks before a tri…you’ll need 6-12 months at a minimum.


#2 People don’t follow an individualized plan. They get a generic plan or follow a friend’s. They might need different skills, mobility, strength, etc. If you want great results, you need your own plan.


SB: How about you, what are your biggest struggles athletically?


Stretching and mobility. When I am short on time, they go out the window.


SB: So what are your training goals this winter?


Well, to increase stretching and mobility. I’ll need a break after Moab (A trail marathon in early November). I didn’t do it last year, and want to take a few weeks to recoup before next season. I want to build base strength this winter, ski a little…


SB: Final question. What can we expect to see from you next year, as far as races go?


That’s still being decided…