Eloise de Landevoisin Campbell is one of the most resilient athletes we have ever coached. Incredibly talented, she has withstood a series of injuries that would have caused many to quit but never gave up. Initially a triathlete, Eloise now uses the cross training nature of triathlon to focus on running with the goal of running in college. Read Eloise’s story in her own words below…
Tell us about your journey to endurance sports. How did you get started?
When I was younger, I watched my dad do a few half Ironman races and local triathlons. I always thought it was cool seeing him wake up at the crack of dawn to go biking or swimming with his friends. My sister was the first of us to do a few local triathlons, so naturally I wanted to follow in her footsteps. I had competed in a few triathlons when I was younger, but I realized I couldn’t swim. So, around the age of 9, I joined the YMCA swim team near me and decided to become a swimmer. When I hit middle school, I then decided to join cross country, and I realized I had a pretty natural ability to run. However, it wasn’t until I was 12 that I decided to join a triathlon team up in CT. From there, I fell in love with the sport.
When was your first race? Tell us about it.
I think I was 8 years old. There was a local triathlon called the Mighty Kids Triathlon in Niantic, CT (back when I lived in CT). My sister had done it the year before me, so I decided I wanted to try. However, the race did not go very well. I believe I was 20th out of 22 7-8 year olds. I didn’t really know how to swim, so this sort of prompted me to then join a swim team a few months later.
What is your greatest accomplishment in the sport?
I have a few specific results that I am proud of, however I would say that my greatest accomplishment was placing 14th at USAT Nationals in my first year of youth elite. This was only my second year competing in the sport so I was pretty motivated. However, since the age of 15, I have dealt with many injuries, preventing me from ever really getting back to where I was.
What is your biggest goal right now?
My biggest goal right now is to be strong enough and injury free to potentially run in college. I am looking at a few D3 schools and lower D1 schools, so we will see where it goes.
What motivates you?
What motivates me is seeing these young girls around me accomplishing so much. I compete against such talented female runners and it pushes me to want to be as good. It shows that hard work and determination can go a long way, and if they can do it, so can I.
Outside of training and racing, what are other important things in your life?
I am in the International Baccalaureate program at JR Tucker. It is a pretty rigorous program, so naturally, it has become a pretty important part of my life. It has taught me a lot about time management and discipline. Junior year was very difficult. I had many nights where I got little to no sleep causing me to make sacrifices in my training.
How has training and racing impacted the rest of your life?
It has taught me a lot about resilience, time management, and discipline. I have had to make a lot of sacrifices as an athlete, which I think will really prepare me in the future for college and beyond that. I feel that it has also forced me to be organized. I have had to plan out schoolwork and training time. In order for everything to go properly, I need to schedule everything.
Why did you choose to train with Endorphin Fitness?
I chose to train with Endorphin Fitness because it had a great reputation, but it also looked like a family. The coaches were so kind, but also very well qualified. I had been training with a team in Connecticut called Nutmeg Youth Triathlon Team which was an awesome team, but when I moved to Virginia, I had to find a new triathlon team. Luckily, Endorphin was in Richmond and it was the perfect fit.
What do you love most about training with Endorphin Fitness?
I love the sense of family. I may be 17 years old, but I am friends with kids from ages 10-17. Age doesn’t matter. We are all so close and it’s such a great atmosphere. It also allows me to be a leader and mentor to the younger athletes.
Anything you would like to add?
Although I don’t compete in triathlons anymore, it will always be a part of me. It is such an amazing sport and it has taught me so much. It is by far one of the best endurance sports out there and I encourage everyone to try to get into it no matter what level of competition. It is a sport that can last you a lifetime with so many learning lessons.