Meet Meredith Perdue, Triathlete & Wedding Photographer

Greetings friends!

I'm starting a new feature on the blog to introduce you to some of my very favorite wedding industry professionals, and highlight healthy tidbits about them you may not know! So often, these guys are busy behind the scenes, making our wedding dreams a reality, whether it's as an event planner, photographer, or florist, but you'd be surprised - many of them are into fitness, too!

I got the idea for this series awhile ago, but had not reached out to anyone for a feature yet. Then, when I saw that my own wedding photographer, the lovely Meredith Perdue, did a triathlon, I knew it was time to get the ball rolling!

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Meredith is a sought-after wedding and lifestyle photographer based in Maine, and she's also co-author of the most adorable foodie/travel blog called Map & Menu. What you may not know about Meredith is that she's also a triathlete! I think that's pretty cool!

Meredith-at-swim

I wanted to know more about this side of Meredith, so I sent her some questions:

Was this your first triathlon?
Technically I participated in my first triathlon when I was in middle school. I swam, while my stepfather completed the bike & run. It was fun to be one of the youngest people at the race! I completed my first solo triathlon when I was in high school, always training with my stepfather and sometimes even my sister. I continued to do a couple of races each year in college, but took a break after we moved to Maine five years ago. The Pirate Triathlon in Casco, Maine, was my first race in quite awhile!
 
What got you interested in doing a triathlon?
My stepfather was my inspiration. He'd been doing triathlons long before I met him, but like many triathletes, he dreaded the swim. After doing a few races as a relay team together, he convinced me to put my old mountain bike to good use and complete an entire race alongside him. We competed in several races together over the years, including a half ironman during my senior year in college. He's always the first person I call about a race nowadays.
How did you train? Did you start several months in advance?
I signed up for the race, which was on June 9th, in April and I made a Google training calendar that I tried my very best to follow.
How often did you train (for example, did you swim everyday or once a week)?
I'm pretty laid-back when it comes to training. I made sure to get in a workout a day, five days a week. I had every intention of riding my bike at least once a week, but somehow I only managed to ride a handful of times before the race. Swimming is my favorite activity, and running pretty much only requires lacing up your shoes and getting out there, so those two are what I did the most during the week. I also completed two brick (bike-run) workouts before the race to try and get my muscles used to running after spending an hour or so on the bike - those are the most challenging workouts for me.
What's your favorite workout?
Swimming, by far! I swam competitively in high school, and although I'm not nearly as fast as I was back then, I love being in the water.
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Workout clothes - do you wear nikes or asics?

I just recently switched from Asics to Nike running shoes, and I'm loving them so far!

Do you have a bike? What kind?
When I graduated from high school, my parents bought me an entry level Trek road bike that I still use and love!
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During the triathlon, what was the hardest part: swimming, running, or bicycling?
I've been dealing with some nagging running injuries since college, so finishing the run when my muscles are tight from a bike ride is always a challenge for my constantly tight IT band.
Did you watch your diet at all prior to the race?
I tried to minimize my sugar intake the week of the race and made sure to start drinking more water than I normally do a few days out.
Did you have a hard time balancing the demands of your career as a wedding photographer and blogger with training?
Yes! In fact, I find that signing up for various races throughout the year (mostly 5Ks or 10Ks) will keep me fairly active. If I don't have an end goal, it's easy for me to get caught up with work & travel, and skip exercising completely.
Finally, how'd you feel at the finish? Were you satisfied with your time?
I felt great! My knee was a little achy, but other than that I felt surprisingly strong!
Do you plan on participating in another triathlon?
Yes! Responding to these questions has actually inspired me to sign up for a local August 18th race!
What advice would you give a first-time triathlete?
If you can, find a friend with whom you might like to train. You don't have to join each other for every single workout, but it's so helpful to have someone support you - it holds you accountable!

Thank you answering these questions and providing these great photos, Meredith!

Readers: You can read Meredith's account of the triathlon here on her lifestyle blog, Map & Menu. Additionally, if you're interested in learning more about Meredith as a wedding photographer, check out her blog. Her work can also be seen on several mainstream wedding blogs, like Style Me Pretty and Southern Weddings. I blogged about her quite a bit prior to our big day, too (here) and if you'd like to see it, our wedding is also featured on Meredith's blog.

Obviously I'm biased, but I have to say, I think she's THE BEST wedding photographer out there!

Thanks again, Meredith!

Have you ever considered participating in a triathlon?

Are there any interesting health or fitness facts about any of your wedding vendors?