Athlete Spotlight: McKeown Family


Note from Coach Vicki | If you think you might recognize the McKeown name, it is because we kicked off the year by highlighting Tom and Mary McKeown (Steve’s dad and step-mother).

The McKeown family is a very special family, and no, not just because they join us in the gym. The McKeown’s are like so many families, but even amongst their incredibly busy lives (jobs, school, maintaining the house/farm, friendships, etc.), they find time for fitness. Even better yet, they find time for fitness together!

One of my dear friends suggested to Anita that she check us out, and I am forever grateful for the opportunity to share the Tri Fitness culture with all of these wonderful people!


 

Name | Steve Mckeown


Anita and I have been married 33 years. We have two girls, Katherine (22) and Sarah (16). Our first date was a five-mile run; we’ve run and biked hundreds and hundreds of miles together since then. We enjoy doing many outdoor activities including skiing, camping, hiking, gardening, canoeing, fishing, and more recently horseback riding.


I have worked in manufacturing my entire career and currently co-own and manage a company that builds medical devices and other precision instruments. I love making things, whether at home or at work with our employees.


I grew up playing basketball everyday with my brothers since I was 10, and have been a runner and cross-country skier since my early twenties. As our kids grew up, we discovered physical activities that we could learn together such as karate, jujitsu, and polocrosse (lacrosse on horses). Recently both girls have taken 5:30 AM RIP classes at Tri Fitness with us. It is a testament to Vicki and Jack that they want to get up that early and workout with their parents.


One of my favorite quotes is: "How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time."


What keeps me going is knowing that putting it off will be harder tomorrow than doing the work today.


I got started at training again when I was no longer able to run to stay in shape due to worn out ankles. I knew that I needed to do something, and Anita was loving it at Tri Fitness. I’ve been training 2-3 days/week ever since, at RIP classes and biking year-round.


My best tip for someone just starting out is to just get started and stick it out. The rewards will come a little bit each week and soon you’ll be surprised how much better you feel.


My Dad is my biggest inspiration. He is very thoughtful and purposeful in his activities, actions and relationships.


My biggest struggle is potato chips.


My goals for the year are simple. Getting stronger (able to carry a bale of hay in each hand), improving my horsemanship (having a strong core and good balance), and playing hard—whether biking, kayaking, hiking, skiing, etc.


 

Name | Anita McKeown


I have loved going out for long runs and bike rides since I was probably 12. It wasn’t so much about the sport, but to get out, see neighborhoods, and breathe the air. I realized in my early 20’s that I was okay at running long distances. That distance running morphed into four marathons over eight years.


I ran on and off through my 30’s and 40’s because I had injuries and physical therapy (nothing catastrophic), but by the time I found Tri Fitness I figured my running days were behind me. I started at Tri Fitness in January of 2020 with Vicki; I had gone through a sedentary period of about two years. Vicki convinced me I could run again, I was hooked!


Steve joined TF and we had a great time biking together in the cycling class.


I worked my way through private sessions and graduated to group classes. The people that walk through the doors here are amazing and all have good stories to share. 2020 was a year of learning strength training for all of us. In January of 2021, I whispered to Vicki that I wanted to do a half ironman—this is a goal I had kept secret for a little while. She said it’s okay to keep a secret so long as it’s not a secret from your coach.


I completed a half IM in July of 2021. It was wonderful and humbling all at the same time. I am not a swimmer and I wanted to quit in the water at Door County in the worst way! I like to say Door County was a networking opportunity. I met many of the wonderful lifeguards in the water that day!


Why I didn’t quit: I don’t quit. I wanted to show my daughters you can finish even if it is slow. I knew Steve believed in me —if I got out of the water (Thanks, Bud). I didn’t want to let down my coach (Thanks, Vicki).


Last fall, Sarah (16 year-old daughter) expressed interest in joining us at the 5:30 AM classes. Sometimes it's a contest of who can grumble the loudest, but the good news is we are out of bed, out the door, and done by 6:30am. And, we start our day together with the greatest crew of people (you know who you are). Our oldest daughter, Katherine, joins us when she is home from college, as well.


It is all great fun. The strength and coordination I have gained is fabulous, and the fact that we can enjoy it as a family is just icing on the cake.


 

Name | Sarah McKeown


Sports have been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. I was a competitive swimmer for around 8 years, and tried nearly every sport from karate to softball. Being in sports automatically meant strength and conditioning at practice. As I have gotten into high school, I have realized that fitness is a crucial if I want to stay caught up with my peers.


I began my journey at Tri Fitness in October of 2021—shortly after my high school soccer season ended—to keep in shape. I will say I was quickly humbled when my parents were lifting much heavier weights than me much easier than me. Since I started, I have been working out almost every Monday, Wednesday, and/or Friday before school. I hadn’t realized how much cross training could help me in soccer, especially trying to keep up with the older girls.


When I told my friends about waking up at 4:30am to workout before school almost every reaction was the same, “How?” I would respond to them with complete honesty, “I don’t know.” The community of Tri Fitness is extremely motivating and supportive, once I’m actually out the door and in class with such fun people. The time really doesn’t matter anymore.

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