Growing up in a small town in Maryland, I participated in many sports including soccer, swim team, and track. I have always strived to be the best and act as a leader both on the field and when in class. Playing three sports was hard so I decided to focus the majority of my efforts to soccer and became the head captain for both my travel and high school teams. After being recruited and starting my college career at Penn State University, I decided it was too much to keep my grades up and play soccer. I decided to give running a go again and fell in love immediately. After running 3 years with the Penn State Club XC team, I met some of my best friends and was hooked on endurance sports. I Graduated from Penn State University a semester early with a Bachelors in Meteorology and a minor in GIS in December 2009.
Never willing to take a break, I immediately started graduate school at Texas A&M in January 2010 to study and get my masters in Meteorology. I found I had one thing missing--I missed having teammates. I had always been interested in doing a triathlon but never had a bike. I decided I would try the A&M Triathlon team and see how I did. I bought a Specialized dolce road bike and didn't even have aero bars or clips, but I competed and I loved it. I also took a position with USAT and became the SMW Collegiate Commissioner. I organized my regions first round of regional championship races and filled in the missing links between the rest of the schools. That year 16 region schools went to Collegiate Nationals for the first time ever and I couldn't of been more proud. A mere 6 months later I was buying my first triathlon bike--a Cannondale Slice. I started winning a few local races and even went to age group nationals.
In 2011, I made the podium for Top 5 Graduate Students at Collegiate Nationals. Unfortunately in August, My Dad passed away. At this time I was planning to do my first Half-Ironman race a few weeks later but didn't know how I would find the strength. I decided that this was the best way to let my Dad see me compete. I went out and did my first 70.3 race and won my age group. I knew my dad was shinning down on me. I knew that he would help me get to the next level.
In 2012, I made the top 10 at Collegiate Nationals. I started to work up this little dream in my head. When I was young, I always thought how cool it would be to be a professional athlete. Why couldn't I? I began picking out races that would get me my "pro" card. I had a few bad races and decided it was dumb to race for my pro card. I needed to remember why I loved the sport and that it would happen when I was ready to go to the next level. In August 2012, I got my Pro license at the Chicago Triathlon. I finished my degree but put my work on hold and left my job. I began to focus on the sport and wanted to see what my body was capable of. This was a huge stepping stone and one pretty scary if you may ask.
2013 was my first year racing as a Professional triathlete.I raised $2k for Crohn's and Colitis in memory of my Dad. I havent looked back. Racing for a dream and following my own dream-- Its what its all about. Now, 6 years later I am currently coaching with Matt Hanson Coaching and coach a wide range of athletes ranging from single sport swimmers and runners, to elite level triathletes. In addition to triathletes, I also spent a year coaching with local para-athletes as well as the Texas A&M triathlon team which went onto a top 3 National title in 2015. Please contact me if your interested in sponsorship or coaching.
USAT L1 Triathlon Coach Retul ACE Personal Training USA Swimming USA Cycling