Meet Coach Mikki
Mikki grew up in the Midwest, where she played a year of D1 soccer in college before shifting gears to focus on school and her education. She ultimately landed at the University of Hawaii – Manoa for her PhD. She is a geologist by training and a research scientist at the Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics at the University of Colorado Boulder. She's lived in the mountains of Colorado for over a decade. In her downtime between science, coaching, and training, she enjoys tele skiing, rock climbing, and hiking in the mountains with her dogs, Loki and Beira.
Although she is an expert in data analysis, a thorough researcher, and is constantly seeking to further her knowledge and understanding of performance and health, she firmly believes in simplicity. She believes it is increasingly prevalent in today’s world that we get lost in the technology, gadgets, and the numbers. Finding the joy, peace, and love of movement (training and racing) is and will always remain the greatest factor in longevity and success in sport.
How long have you been coaching?
What motivated you to begin coaching?
I started coaching when I was in high school (youth soccer). Throughout the years, my athletic focus has shifted but my enjoyment of the art and science of coaching has not. Sharing knowledge and motivating, helping athletes find their own unique paths, being a shoulder to lean on through the ups and downs of training, racing, and life is why I coach.
Types of athletes or race distances you prefer to coach?
All types of athletes and distances/focuses but most importantly those with an open mind, a willingness to learn, and a desire to commit to the journey.
What is your coaching philosophy?
As a scientist I am always seeking to understand processes. I undertake research to learn what’s been done previously and then gather and integrate data in order to support or refute hypotheses. I apply this same approach to coaching. I do not believe that there is a single method or program for every athlete. I use knowledge gained over the years through education, research, and experience and I work closely with each athlete to develop a training plan that is challenging but sustainable and works with their lives. Integrating all aspects of an athlete’s life (athletic strengths and weakness, mindset, work, family, community, etc.) is essential for long term success.
Coaching certifications and experience
USAT Level 1, TrainingPeaks University level 1 and 2
How did you get into the sport?
I grew up a runner and after I finished my PhD I started looking to qualify for Boston and maybe transition to ultras. However, Ironman caught my attention and it’s been an incredibly fun, challenging, and rewarding journey thus far. I don’t know where it will take me, but I’m excited to continue to learn, adapt, and enjoy the process.
Favorite Distance to Race?
Race history, personal achievements, and PRs
8 x Ironman finisher, PR of 10:31. Numerous 70.3s, marathons (3 x BQ, PR of 3:24), a few trail races including a 50 miler.