"My name is Meredith Kessler. I have been fortunate enough to make my hobby my job which I am very grateful for. I’m a professional triathlete so I get to swim, bike and run for a living."
When did you realize you wanted to be a professional athlete?
"I graduated from college in 2000 and plopped myself in a full Ironman distance in the middle of nowhere, Ohio at the time. We live in California now but I was born and raised in Columbus, Ohio. I sort of caught the bug there. I was 21 at the time and spent 9 years as an age grouper and was working full time and things were crazy in my job and my social life. My friends were getting married and all that good stuff and we just had fun and then I was almost 30 and I said, Gosh! Maybe let’s try to make my hobby my job. I’ve always dreamed of being a professional athlete, whatever that was going to be. But I never knew it could come to a reality until probably just before 30."
What are some of your career highlights?
"I’m still searching for that huge victory for my team and myself but you know whether that’s of course we all dream of our super Bowl whether it be Kona or 70.3 Worlds or these Challenges in Dubai and Challenges in Bahrain. That’s always a goal to try to capture one of those. I’ve been fortunate in the last 6 years as a pro to gather some titles and each one I remember like it was yesterday because I so value them so much because they just don’t get hand delivered to any of us. So I’d say for our highlight obviously it could be Ironman in New Zealand. We’ve headed there 4 years in a row. I’ve been at Saint George for 7 years. Every time it’s been up and offered and same goes for Ironman. I’ve raced there 9 years as an amateur and now 6 times as a pro. Something like that at some capacity. So I’ve been there quite a bit. Those 3. We are trying to go for 4 peaks in those this year. Not as a hard job for anyone. There are several athletes going for 4 peaks at certain races this year so they probably have the same mind set of me like… Alright let’s try to go back and do this as many times as we can cause we love the race. You know!? So we’re going to go for it. Try it!"
What is a typical day like for Meredith Kessler?
"Every day is different for everyone but I mean most days you’re up super early. I’m kind of a weirdo, I have to run every morning on the treadmill just to wake the heck up! Before I go train and have to do a session. I’ll run 2 to 4 miles easy like snail’s pace on the treadmill just to wake up and get the blood flowing. Sometimes I’ll do that at 4:30 in the morning because usually most sessions being at 5:30 or 5:45. So I’ll go and swim for an hour and a half to almost 2 hours and then you make sure you recover properly. Sometimes I’ll jump in my boots for 15 minutes and even if it’s just 15 minutes that’s the beauty of it. Get on your email and then you go to your next session when that’s a 2-4 hour ride or could just be a 90 minute trainer session. Once again it’s all about nutrition and how you are feeling and recovery in between. But we also have jobs. People think, Oh you just swim bike and run all day? Right, like that’s all you do. At the same time there’s a lot of other components. There’s nutrition, recovery, making sure that you’re staying on top of your fitness. We’re all a brand. We’re all a business and we all have sponsors like RecoveryPump who are a part of the team. Like most of us, we don’t want to just take from that. We want to give back. So we have to make sure our sponsors are good and did I do A, B & C and that’s so important for our business. So that’s part of the day to day. People talk about, oh yeah! You can swim, bike and run but you also run a business. So you actually work more then you did when you’re in an office. But here’s the plus side. I can be on my laptop and in my RecoveryBoots multi-tasking getting a ton of work done. So that’s a win-win situation. So that’s a typical day and then you have a strength session or you have an evening run set or evening outdoor run. There’s all different kinds of things so your day goes. That’s my 9 to 5. Right, but then you have to keep the balance and the chi. Last night I had a girls dinner and sure did I get home late, Yeah! And get less sleep and get up at 4:30 in the morning? Absolutely!! But it’s worth that time and you just make it up in other ways later in terms of recovery."
How did you approach recovery prior to discovering RecoveryPump?
"You know, I’ve never really been a sleeper and now I’m almost 37 and hey, I think we’ve hit our prime in our sport. When were 30-40+ I always say this, there’s always girls out there racing that are absolutely incredible and they are in there 40’s and they are an inspiration. I know to me and I’m only 4-5 years younger than that, let me tell you it’s so important to, that as we do progress in the sport and we get older that we take care of those little things that make the big things happen. Prior to RecoveryPump, my recovery wasn’t there because it wasn’t as paramount as it is now because I kind of just did one interval. I just ran on adrenaline and I’m still like that sometimes of course but now RecoveryPump makes it easier to recover and that’s the key for the average busy person. Look I don’t have kids yet, I want to have kids. I can’t imagine individuals who are doing this sport and managing kids managing their day jobs. It’s a lot. When do they have time to recover too? So once they put the kids to bed, I know when I talk to people and encourage them to get into their boots and check their emails before going to bed. That’s the key and that never happens. A lot of people don’t make the time for it and you have to make it part of your day. Obviously nutrition is a huge part of recovery but you have that and what goes inside you. You need the recovery what goes outside of you and for me that comes with that double whammy and making sure that you’re doing that stretching. I’m not a big stretcher never have been. I rely on honestly on RecoveryPump for that and swimming. My MBK swims are just my chi back and forth back and forth like a lab rat. So everyone has their tic and what works for them and what doesn’t. So that’s personally what works for me."
What kind of results are you getting with RecoveryPump?
"Couple things there: I have a tendency when I do a really hard session when my legs get tired and accrue fatigue. I get inflamed. When I say that my legs feel heavy and swollen. I know it’s an awful word but they do. It’s like after a race for example, any Ironman athlete will tell you that yours legs look like tree trunks the day after a race for 2 days. Pre-RecoveryPump, I used to dread it. I was like oh my gosh, I’m going to be marshmallow man for 2 days’ time and I’m going to feel terrible even when I have to go back to work. I mean in an office my legs look horizontal rather than vertical. They would just not be in a good position. It would make that inflammation worse and the beauty of it is once I started using RecoveryPump It doesn’t because it moves the lactic acid and the blood around with the compression and decompression. It makes all of that kind of disappear. That has been the biggest situation in addition I use it when I’m eating breakfast before a race so I get up and run on the treadmill before the race, come back shower do the whole thing, got to shave make sure I smell fresh for the race because you have to make sure you smell good for the whole entire Ironman because you know you don’t want to get sweaty or anything. No, really genuinely try to wake up and put my boots on for 20 minutes every morning before I race while I eat my breakfast. I just feel like it warms up the muscles and gets them ready to fire. So that’s the 2 way I use my RecoveryPump."
How do you use RecoveryPump?
"Yes, so I use the fullest pressure. I go to 100 but it’s funny because after a race sometimes I’ll lower it to more like 80 just because I have a tendency also to cramp a lot and that is another thing RecoveryPump helps with since it’s moving so much compression. It helps with the cramping a bit. Obviously we are so dehydrated after a race, right? We just are spent. When I did have it on 100 or so my foot would be cramping but after a couple intervals with the RecoveryPump it went away. So that has been very helpful. I just love it! In the beginning and as it progresses I just turn it up a bit. But I personally like it. Everyone’s different. I personally think the higher the better. Works for me!"
Tell us about your experiences using the latest RecoveryPump products.
"A couple things of amazingness, First of all let’s talk about the Core because I just got that. That compresses my butt cheeks basically which makes me so happy. Not that my normal RecoveryPump isn’t great but as you know they only come up mid-thigh, right? So the core gets all the other stuff that hasn’t been compressed or RecoveryPumped in years so that has been a really great addition to my routine if you will. Then just being able to travel now with it and not having to plug it in because of the battery pack… That’s huge. I never would have thought RecoveryPump could have thought of something so innovated but I can just carry it and put it on. Battery charged without having to plug it in. Then of course you charge it but then you use it again. You can take it to the TV or if think I’m going to work in the office I take in there and sit in a chair with the RecoveryPump on and work. Such like that. I take it internationally with me. Also if I have a drive, basically 2 hours or more and my husbands with me I use it. So I’m in the passenger seat obviously I’m not driving with these on. But I’m in the passenger’s seat I put them on when we go up to Tahoe 3 hours away or drive down to LA. You know how when you get into the car and any athlete you know would tell too that your legs just feel terrible but I just put my Recoveryboots on in the car. It’s the best invention ever."
Would you recommend RecoveryPump to other athletes?
"I’m such a no pressure person I know what I like and I know what works and so then I get really passionate about it. So of course… You get asked all the time. What are your tools to recovery? My main tools of recovery are RecoveryPump and I take a vitamin called Vector450. That’s good for my equilibrium & immune system and keeps my healthy like vitamin C and all that so those are my 2 main things in addition to my nutrition component. So people wonder why I can’t recover faster from a work out. Why can’t I feel spunkier in my legs after I just done a really hard triple session. How come you don’t feel like that? Like you can do that the next day and don’t get me wrong my WEB days … Why Even Bother days! I have them all the time but since I’ve starting using the RecoveryPump in the past 6 years that time to recover has significantly decreased. I’ve been able to lessen the days where I feel WEB and tired and fatigue because the RecoveryPump has genuinely helped. So that’s the story I explain to them. They think you have to where them for like 2 hours at a time, and it’s not like I haven’t sat there in them for 2 hours at a time when I watch movies on our couch. Yes!! But that’s not a priority. If people would just wear them for 15-20 minutes a day they are going to notice a huge difference. So time is our biggest commodity, Right? It’s everyone’s biggest problem for balance… Oh I don’t have time to RecoveryPump, OK well you had time to sit and check twitter, Facebook and social media for 15 minutes and actually you can still do that but you can do that in your RecoveryPump. So let’s talk about multi-tasking so then they start seeing that side of how it’s a win-win situation and they do have time!"
-Meredith B Kessler, Ironman Champion