Bree Wee: Welcome to the Team
2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike, and then a marathon, back-to-back-to-back. That’s 140.6 miles total, or if you prefer the metric system, 226.3 heart-pounding kilometers. No matter the units, it’s a heck of a long race, and one of the reasons professional triathlete and super mom Bree Wee jumps out of bed every morning.
Bree’s triathlon life began by serendipity on the morning of March 2, 2003, at the swim start of the Peaman Biathlon in Kailua-Kona Hawaii.
“I was treading water in beautiful Kailua Bay, home of the Hawaii Ironman World Championships, in my bikini, clueless girls would wear anything other than a bikini in the ocean. 3…2…1….go! Elbows flung, arms flew, feet kicked. It was all of a sudden a place I was growing to love and would eventually become very comfortable with. Out of the swim, I threw a sports bra over my bikini top, shorts over my bottoms, socks and shoes on my feet…. trying to get dry clothes over wet clothes proved to be a comedy in itself.”
“Out of breath, dizzy, and clueless how to even run 4 miles without stopping, I survived with a lot of sprinting; stop; catch breath; and go again. I remember getting a popsicle stick as I came across the finish line (to mark my place as a finisher) and being very upset there was no popsicle on it! The rest of the local Kona girls must have forgotten to show up because I somehow managed the win. Nearly all the triathletes in the race encouraged me to get a bike, wear a one-piece swimsuit, (that I swore I’d never be caught alive in), and join Kona Aquatics swim team. So I did. Well, not the one-piece, that wouldn’t happen for another year. Eventually I caved in to a more tri-friendly swimsuit and found myself 4 years later, on the very same start line, in that very same spot, but this time for the Hawaii Ironman World Championships.”
What a performance it was. The Florida surfer girl turned endurance athlete made an epic splash at her first Hawaii Ironman World Championship, setting the amateur female record with a 9:47:40 finish. A few months later Bree turned pro and quickly made her mark when she placed 2nd at Ironman Japan. Fast-forward through an illustrious collection of achievements, Bree is now one of the most notable female triathletes in the world. And like a true champion, Bree’s vision goes beyond just winning races.
“I would have never guessed that sunny Hawaiian morning in March would have impacted my life so beautifully. Triathlon has opened so many incredible doors of opportunity for me, allowed me to build a greater appreciation for the world and people in it, and find a place where I can possibly inspire the next generation to live their dreams.”
“Possibly inspire….” is an understatement. Bree is one of the coolest and most inspirational human beings around. Aside from being an advocate for healthy lifestyle, she is active in the community and involved with several charities, including Project Fast, which gives back running shoes and healthy inspiration to underprivileged children.
We are proud to welcome Bree to the Purps family and are looking forward to watching her inspire athletes young and old as she races her way to another Ironman World Championship in Kona, Hawaii. You can follow Bree’s journey on her blog at breewee.com, purps.com, and on Instagram @breesywee, @purps, Facebook and Twitter.