Patricia Brownell

Patricia Brownell

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Foxboro, Massachusetts

USA Cycling - Level 3 Coach
Former USA Triathlon – Level 1 Coach
Former E3 Training Solutions Level 2 Coach
Level 2 Specialized Body Geometry Fit & Head Fitter at Landry’s Bicycles in Braintree
Women’s Cycling Director – Blue Hills Cycling Club & Blue Hills Tri Club (Boston, MA) 
PCG Associate Coach - In Training

Coaching Focus: Triathlon, Cycling, Running


After several years competing as an elite runner and semi-pro triathlete and having informally helped some friends with their training schedules, I became interested in coaching and decided to pursue a career in coaching. In 2011 I began my coaching education and received my USA Triathlon Certified Coaching license in February of 2012. I left my long-time professional career at a law firm and immediately began coaching with E3 Training Solutions on a full-time basis while working a part-time job in sales at Landry’s Bicycles. While working at the bike shop, my interest in road, cyclocross and mountain bike racing increased and I received my USAC level 3 coaching certificate in early 2015. In 2014 I began working at Landry’s full-time, becoming the head fitter in Braintree while continuing to coach with E3 on a part-time basis. In 2016 I joined Apex Coaching group. I flourished in this role, but took the next step in professional coaching and joined Peaks Coaching Group in the summer of 2016.

I find that my strongest strength as a coach is the fact that I’ve done it all (road running, triathlon, cyclocross, road racing, mountain biking). I find that my diverse background gives me the ability to think out of the box, see the big picture and work with a variety of athletes. I can think of countless instances where my history with run analysis helps a cyclist or knowing how certain cyclocross skills can help a triathlete - the list goes on and on. I value getting to know my athletes as much as possible and I can say without a doubt that every single one of my clients has become a friend. Of course I do enjoy numbers, coaching with power, periodizing training schedules and using science to help make my athletes stronger but combining that process with a personalized approach for each athlete is where I excel – no athlete is the same and each needs to be treated as an individual. I am also type 1 diabetic and have coached many other type 1 diabetic athletes, many to Ironman finishes! Working as a bike-fitter and salesperson at a busy bicycle shop has proven to be an added bonus to my coaching skillset: I see all types of cyclists all day long. I’m always inundated with information whether it be what the buzz is on the cycling scene with racing or what new power meter is the latest and greatest. Considering my boyfriend is also an avid mountain, road and cyclo-crosser and we spend all of our free time doing pretty much all of those things, one could say my life is pretty much all bikes all the time!

Coaching philosophy

I believe in a mixture of science/evidence based coaching. While numbers can show us (sometimes very obviously) whether we are improving or not, and can help us map out a tangible plan for improvement in the future, numbers aren’t everything! How an athlete feels both physically and emotionally, how motivated they are to improve, how their bodies are responding to training (or lack thereof), how their personal lives affect their training and vice versa – these are all things numbers can’t tell us and are every bit as important. I really enjoy getting to know my athletes. Having been coached by several coaches in the past, I always felt I got the most from those who took the time to know “all” of me rather than just the athletic me and I strive to do the same for my athletes. Also, having neglected my own body in the past leading to some hip surgeries, I also tend to put a strong emphasis on strength training, especially in an athlete’s off season. A strong body is one that can achieve those numbers when you need them! In summary I would say my philosophy is mostly one of balance, common sense and fun. I like my athletes to improve but enjoy themselves in doing so!

Notable Achievements and Specialties

My athletic background began about 12 years ago as an elite runner. I purchased a bicycle when running injuries forced me to cross-train and I fell in love with riding. I learned how to swim and one year later I competed in my first Ironman triathlon. I had success relatively quickly in triathlon, winning some local races, and I gained sponsorship with Team Type 1 (now Team Novo-Nordisk), racing semi-pro for three years. In my last year racing as a triathlete, I received a USAT All-American distinction after many overall and age-group wins and podiums and figured I would retire from the sport on a high note. After that, my racing shifted to road and mostly cyclocross racing. I am currently a Cat 4 road racer and Cat 3 cyclocross racer. I don’t get a lot of time while working full time at the bike shop to race a full road season so I tend to focus on early season races like Battenkill and focus more on a full cyclocross season later in the year when the bike shop scene slows down a bit. 

Athlete Testimonials

“Whenever I’m talking to someone about hiring a coach I always recommend my coach, Patricia Brownell (Peej). This inevitably leads to question about why I recommend her – the list of reasons is long but here are some poignant points:
1st and most important – She took the time to get to know me…. Not the pre-canned notion of what someone my age (when I hired her I had just turned 57) had the ability to do, the assumption was that I’d been running for a long time. I was only 2 years into my new active lifestyle. I had interviewed many coaches before deciding on Peej. I had felt frustrated during those interviews because they didn’t seem to understand that not only was I an older athlete but I was also new to all of this. At the time I only ran and was training for a marathon. I am a turtle, my fastest marathon time was 5:35, none of the other coaches could explain to me how only running 2 – 2 ½ hours on a Saturday and Sunday would get me ready to run 26.2 miles, at the time 2 ½ hours would only be about 13 miles max.  

I was about 8 weeks out from running the Pittsburgh Marathon when I started working with Peej and I had immediate success – I ran my 1st negative split race.

2nd – She took the time to explain the training to me – not just the individual workout but the reasoning, why it was important and what the expected results were
3rd – She cares about her athletes and not setting them up for failure – she’ll be honest – but she’ll also challenge you

Because of Peej’s encouragement and support I am now doing triathlons – which is amazing because I never learned how to ride a bike until 4 years ago. Not only that, in December 2015 I had a 20-minute marathon PR and in August 2016 a 1 hour+ 70.3 Ironman PR and in September 2016 my first 100-mile bike ride.

She’s honest, supportive and will work your butt off (I’ve cursed her during a few workouts) but you will see results and see that your goals are achievable.” 

Ruthanne Waite, Medford, MA (Triathlete)

“I am pleased to be writing this testimonial for Patricia Brownell. I have known Patricia for over a year now and could not be happier with my coaching choice. Her knowledge of training in the cycling world is phenomenal. I came to her and told her what I was looking for and she not only helped me in the area I needed help with, but also helped me identify and improve other areas I was lacking in. The one thing I really like about Patricia is that she is honest and up front with me. Patricia will check-up on me every now and then and will call me out if I haven’t been finishing my workouts. I truly like that about my coach; she pays attention to your workouts and most importantly wants you to succeed. I am honored to be one of her athletes and look forward to more training with her. Thank you for your outstanding effort and support.” 

Manny Reyes, Norwood, MA (Cyclist)

“I had been competing in sprint and Olympic triathlons for a few years when I decided to tackle the 70.3 distance. I phoned my bike shop to inquire about a tri bike and had the good fortune to get Peej on the line. As my luck would have it, she had competed in the distance herself and was a coach. It became clear during our conversation that she has the experience and knowledge to help me achieve my goal.

Peej brings a scientific approach to her training programs. Through workout analysis, she was able to identify areas where I could improve, and was able to build a training program tailored to me. Peej is not afraid to challenge me. More than once, my training schedule looked impossible, yet, I would somehow finish each week amazed at how well I had done.

When I was sidelined, with an injury, Peej was able to modify my training to allow my body to heal while at the same time maintaining the maximum level of fitness. Peej’s support and encouragement allowed me to stay positive and focused on my goal.

In the two years I have worked with Peej, I have smashed my half marathon PR and competed three 70.3 events, getting stronger with each successive race.”

Virginia Dolan, Milton, MA (Triathlete)

“I ran my first road race ever in 2011, somehow deciding that the Boston Marathon would be a good place to start. 3:44 - not bad, so I had the bug. I decided I needed to qualify. I'm not sure I'd ever run a mile around 7 minute pace, and I needed 26.2 of them. Crazy. I tried to get faster on my own - reading books, increasing my load. Got faster, but nowhere near where I needed to be. Nowhere close. Enter Coach Peej. 
Coach designed a plan for me to get better. We worked on speed, endurance, strength, form, nutrition. An email waited for me every morning, personally designed for me based on what I needed when I needed it. She used all the data tools and experience in her arsenal. 5ks, 10ks, halfs. Training runs, hills, track workouts, speed tests - coach Peej, yelling encouragement. Following her plan.
Race morning - I felt prepared. Coach said I had it, and designed a mile by mile plan, and a pre-race plan starting at wake up. Needed a 3:10. Ran a 3:10:09. 9 seconds away is one way to look at it. Coach said 34 minutes faster. She was proud of me, even though it hurt. 
Another year. But coach knew me. She knew how to get me there. Fine tuning. There was science to her method, and I trusted her experience. Next year, a BQ - 3:09. Tears in my eyes. It was a tombstone type accomplishment and Coach got me there. 
I've seen the soup to nuts -- as an athlete that needed a lot to really improve and as an athlete that needed a little to make a big goal. Coach delivered a BQ for me, and I'd recommend her for you. Jim C., 3:44 to BQ” 

Jim C., Boston, MA (Runner)

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