Sugarland Guitarist Thad Beaty’s Video Diary


The decision and commitment to train for an IRONMAN is no a small feat. There are a lot of different reasons and motivations driving athletes to sign up, but ultimately everyone’s goal is to cross the finish line on race day.

While completing their first IRONMAN was an amazing accomplishment, many athletes find that the true benefit is in the journey along the way. Meet Thad Beaty, Kona Inspired spokesperson and athlete and guitarist for the Grammy-winning and multi-platinum country group Sugarland.

Four years ago, Thad Beaty was 75 pounds overweight, with high blood pressure and high cholesterol. As the guitarist for Sugarland, Thad’s lifestyle included constant touring, eating out daily, very little exercise and a lot of late nights.

However, in 2009 Thad got a sharp “wake up call” when his mother was diagnosed with colon cancer and not long after, Sugarland guitar tech Kevin Quigley was also diagnosed with cancer and began chemotherapy treatment (Quigley passed away in March of 2012).

Thad knew he had to make some changes in his life. In addition to committing to a vegan and gluten-free diet, he started training for triathlons and century rides. He lost 70 lbs in less than 18 months. In November 2012, Thad achieved his dream and became an IRONMAN at Ironman Arizona (he used TrainingPeaks to track and plan all his training). Training for Ironman also inspired Thad to start the Music that Moves program, a foundation that helps musicians and others in the music industry to lead healthier lifestyles as well as to pursue good causes that are near and dear to them. Now, he is the 2013 Kona Inspired Spokesperson for IRONMAN, and is on the journey to the Ironman World Championships in October.

Despite the fact that Thad is an accomplished musician and has completed an Ironman, he admits to be “a very average athlete”, and faces the same major struggle as most age groupers: fitting in Ironman training amidst a busy traveling and work schedule as well as family obligations.

To help Thad along in his journey to Kona, he will be coached by Keith Watson of NoDNF Coaching, a USAT certified coach who has been racing Ironman for 15 years himself. Thad will continue to log all of his workouts into TrainingPeaks and along the way, Thad will document his training in a weekly video.

Over the next 6 months we will take you through Thad’s journey from beginner triathlete to IRONMAN, highlighting not only his training, but how it is affecting his work, relationships, health and everything in between.

Episode 1 and 2 of Thad’s video diary is below. Follow his weekly video updates on our YouTube channel.

Episode 1 – The Journey Begins

Episode 2 – TrainingPeaks Metrics

About the Author

Gloria Liu

Gloria Liu is the Content Editor at TrainingPeaks. She's also a mountain biker, snowboarder turned skier, seasonal yogi, recovered financial analyst, huge eater, and lover of all things endurance. Read more from Gloria at, or follow her on Twitter @thats_my_line.

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