Calah Schlabach
Calah Schlabach ('09) is a Calvin graduate who—let’s just be honest—majored in cross country and track while minoring in English and writing. After a year or so of global wandering, she discovered the sport of triathlon. Calah is currently working as a professional triathlete.

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Left my Heart in California

What you are about to hear is strange, or so I hear: I had always thought I wouldn’t like California. Yes, California. Not Ohio. Not South Dakota, or Kansas, or one of those middle states.

Gremlin

The speaker said, “I have found that my elite athletes typically have a gremlin—something from their past that creates work ethic and an axe to grind.”

Upside Down

This is why we remind each other of what we already know—so we can remember what it means: We might grieve now, but death won’t win.

Coaches

I have had a lot of coaches in my life, and each of them has taught me something (most have taught me more than I can remember).

Valentine’s Birthday

I tried to embrace my birthday by liking all heart-decorated things, making these symbolic of myself. I had a belt that was made of heart-shaped links. Things like that.

Learning from “Dumb” Goals

I always figured that if I had something I legitimately wanted to change, I would certainly not make a NYR regarding it, because that would be pre-determining failure for the thing I actually cared about.

On Why I Hate Church

“You’ll have to excuse Calah. All these people are giving her information overload right now. Please join her in the ladies’ room for a deep conversation about this week’s scripture reading.”

Looking Back

I was inexplicably tired, unable to focus, and uncertain how I would ever get everything done. I wondered, briefly, why I had chosen such a difficult path.

Striving for Type C

As a soon-to-be professional triathlete, I have had to work to be more Type A in some areas. My coach, Zane, calls it “attention to detail” or “doing the things that matter.”

Small Talk

small talk greatly ups the chance that I will be asked the following dreaded question: “Do you have any siblings?”—or one of the many variations this question can take.

Navigating the Bike Trail

It wasn’t so much that I was worried about my own ability to navigate the hazards of the trail, but that I did not trust anyone else—and generally for good reason.

Winner

This past Saturday, I was humbled. I did what I think was my fourteenth triathlon. I won the overall female award by quite a margin—would have beat all the men, too, if I hadn’t brought my boyfriend, Matt, along. But there was a much more impressive performance at this race.