Leader of the pack

Amanda Frost excels both on the job and as a top triathlete

Submitted photo Amanda Frost competed in the XTERRA Off-Road Triathlon in Hawaii in October, where she placed 13th in her age group.

COLUMBIANA — When Amanda Frost needs to step away from her nonstop schedule, she still manages to keep herself busy. And while most people may want to relax with their time away from work, she does something entirely different. For a woman with four jobs, it is not surprising that she would be successful competitor in triathlons, a sport that requires a tremendous work ethic.

Frost is a business banking relationship manager for Citizens Bank, the executive director of Leadership Columbiana County, a spinning instructor at Pure Cycle and sells real estate for Century 21 Lakeside. Still, that doesn’t stop her from training every day of the week.

Competing in more than 40 triathlons, Frost has qualified for the world championships five times. And while competition is not Frost’s favorite part of the sport, her love for the process and the comradery that comes with it are what keep her going.

“Everybody thinks I am this super competitive person, but I actually hate competition,” Frost said. “I actually enjoy the process of it and the people that I’ve met. Obviously, that competition is going to be there, but it’s more about me not wanting to lose.”

She may like the process of preparing for a race, but she admitted that it’s not easy. She does two workouts per day, which consist of six days of running, six days of biking and two days of swimming. Because of her swimming background, she likes to spend more time training in the other areas.

Although she has grown tired of swimming over the years, she believes it gives her an advantage in every race.

“For people that don’t have a swimming background, they need to work on it a lot more because swimming is the first part of a race and it can really tire you out,” Frost said. “Because I have a swimming background, there’s not as much improvement to gain. I don’t get as tired during the races, so I don’t have to focus on that as much.”

Frost, who has been a swimmer her whole life and swam in college at Baldwin Wallace, felt like she was swimming too much and decided to quit for a while. That’s when she adopted a different form of exercise and picked up running.

Shortly after that, she began taking a spin class, which would ultimately result in biking becoming her favorite part of the triathlon.

“I really enjoyed taking the spin class, but I didn’t have a bike,” Frost said. “Two weeks after I bought a bike, I competed in my first triathlon.”

When she placed first overall in the first traithlon she ever competed in, she knew it would be something she could get used to.

While Frost occasionally competes in road triathlons, the majority of races are crossroad triathlons, which are off-road. A crossroad race consists of swimming in a lake or ocean, mountain biking and a trail run.

Frost competed in the World Championship of XTERRA Off-Road Triathlon held in Hawaii in October, and despite battling a foot injury, finished in a time of 4 hours, 11 minutes and 6 seconds, which was good enough to finish 13th out of 26 triathletes in the 40-44 age group.

“There are about 600 of the best athletes in the world from over 40 countries, so it’s certainly a humbling experience,” Frost said. “The age groups compete on the same course at the same time as the professionals. You’re right there with them, and that’s different than every other sport.”

With her family traveling all over the country to watch her compete, Frost feels like she has the best support system in the world. Her parents, Judge Mark and Sharon Frost, have traveled up to nine hours to watch her race for one day and then drive home.

“It makes me happy to see them there,” Frost said. “They’ve always been supportive throughout my whole life. We do this as a family and supporting one another is really important.”

When Frost crosses the finish line, she can’t help but think of what it took to get there. Her training is what prepares her body, but that’s just part of the equation. The pride for her city and the love from her family are why she is one of the best triathletes in the world.