Jessica Perkins


When/Where was your first triathlon?
My journey began in December 2015 with an indoor triathlon at the St. Peter’s Rec Plex; and my first triathlon with outdoor biking and running was Try Tri Edwardsville in April 2016. That triathlon was even more special because my son flew in from New York to race with me. Since the first one, I have competed in roughly 20 sprint triathlons over my first three years.

What is your favorite race?
At home, without a doubt, the St. Louis Triathlon is my favorite race because MSE Racing is professional and is always looking for ways to improve the experience. Outside of St. Louis, I haven’t had much experience, but I have enjoyed competing in the Chicago Triathlon (2016 and 2017) because of its size (9,000 athletes) and the ability to hang out in an amazing city.

What is your favorite place in or around St. Louis to train?
I define “favorite” as convenient, flexible and/or picturesque. The locations that fit my definition are Creve Coeur Park for biking and running using the trail extensions; and the Bridgeton Community Center for swimming with its very affordable membership fee and liberal lap swimming schedule. When I have time, I thoroughly love biking on the MCT trails.

What is your favorite thing about triathlon?
There are three elements that I enjoy most about competing in triathlons – 1) meeting new people and learning about their journeys; and 2) knowing that I will constantly grow mentally, physically and emotionally from the experience; and 3) volunteering at both adult and kid triathlons.

What is the one piece of tri-geek gear you can’t live without?
Wow, that’s a hard one! For training, it’s my Finis Tempo Trainer because it has helped me to improve my swim pace; and for racing, I would have to say a Bondi band. I perspire profusely and the Bondi band definitely helps to keep my eyes clear of salty sweat. Yuck!

If resources were unlimited, in what international triathlons would you compete?
I’m a big fan of race-cations and I would like to travel to three locations for a 70.3 race – Costa Rica (this one is very possible), Thailand and Peru.

What have been the greatest highlights since beginning your journey?
Without a doubt, the St. Louis Triathlon in 2016 because it was the first OW triathlon. In 2018, I was sidelined during the height of the season and decided to increase my volunteer hours. Not only did I volunteer at most local events, I volunteered for three days at IM Louisville. I had so much respect for the athletes and although it rained all day with colder than normal temperature, I enjoyed the entire event. It’s fun to support others fulfilling their dreams!!!