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Ryan Kelly, Triathlete

Ryan Kelly

I first was introduced to triathlon in 1997 while attending the University of Oregon. My introduction was very typical of many - I watched the Ironman Hawaii on TV and thought to myself, "Those athletes are nuts! I want to do that!" From there, I joined the U of O triathlon team, enrolled in some swim classes, and began the arduous task of learning about the sport of triathlon.

My academic studies took me to Boulder, CO where I attended graduate school at Colorado University (CU). There I again joined the university triathlon team. The CU team, however, was more than a "team". It was a group of 100 plus athletes with a core group that trained with some of the best triathletes in the world. It was not uncommon for Mark Allen, Dave Scott, Wes Hobson, Cam Widoff, or Mike Pigg to be invited to be a guest speaker at one of our team meetings. I spent three years on the team, one of which I was the president, and during this time we won three collegiate team national championships! My focus during these years was primarily the Half distance. In my first 70.3 in Blackwater, Maryland I was able to go sub 4:30 just missing a Hawaii qualifying spot by a few minutes!

As is common with triathletes I was quite over-trained & fatigued. My results were generally good, but inconsistent at best. "Rest" was not in my vocabulary and I paid the price with burnout, injury, and performances that lacked any consistent progression. Due to this burnout I took a number of years off from the sport.

When I eventually moved back to Boise, ID in 2002 I met Michelle StanWiens. I was intrigued with her view on training and the systematic approach she took to it. It was very much like Joel Friel 's approach, which I was introduced to in Boulder, but unable to follow due to my view of "more is better". I enlisted Michelle as my coach and saw immediate results in both the weight room and race performance.

In 2008, my professional career took me to Tampa, FL. Due to the tremendous abundance of sunny weather, beaches, and active people in the "Sunshine State", triathlon is a big sport. There are races almost every weekend year-round in Florida. After acclimating to my new job, I again returned to triathlon. This past year was my first full season back and Michelle was instrumental in my training and immediate success in age group rankings. I traveled all over the state racing in sprint races and placing quite well overall and in my age group. In 2011 my focus will once again be on 70.3 with the goals of breaking my PR in the 70.3 and qualifying for the 70.3 World Championships that are held in St. Petersburg, FL. I know that with the expert help of Michelle I have a very good chance of reaching my goals!

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