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Meet Paris 2024 Olympic Triathlete Taylor Spivey

by USA Triathlon

Taylor Spivey was officially announced as a U.S. Olympic Triathlon Team member earlier in June! If you haven’t read the announcement, you can see who made the team here.

USA Triathlon will be highlighting all five members of the U.S. Olympic Triathlon Team, starting with Taylor!

Keep a look out to get to know all five of the triathletes repping the stars and stripes at the Games this summer!

Name: Taylor Spivey

Age: 33 (April 13, 1991)

Hometown: Manhattan Beach, Calif.

Current Residence: Girona, Spain

College: California Polytechnic State University ‘14

Career Highlights:

2024 U.S. Olympic Team Member

2022 World Triathlon Championship Series overall rankings, 4th
2022 Super League Championship Series Runner-Up
2019 ITU World Triathlon Series overall rankings, 4th
2018 ITU World Triathlon Series overall rankings, 8th
4-time ITU World Triathlon Series medalist (2 silvers, 2 bronze)
4-time ITU Triathlon World Cup medalist (1 gold, 3 silvers)
4-time CAMTRI American Cup medalist (1 gold, 1 silver, 2 bronzes)
3-time World Triathlon Mixed Relay Series (2 silver, 1 bronze)
2018 USA Triathlon Elite National Championships bronze medalist
2017 USA Triathlon Elite National Championships silver medalist
2014 USA Triathlon Collegiate Club National Champion (draft-legal)

Taylor grew up in Manhattan Beach, California, and was an experienced ocean lifeguard, winning the 2011 and 2012 Ocean Lifeguard Nationals. Spivey went on to become a swimmer and Cal Poly and specialized in long-distance while earning a degree in architecture. Spivey enjoys the team aspect of triathlon — once as a member of the collegiate club team at Cal Poly, and now as a member of the U.S. National Team and frequent U.S. Mixed Relay Team competitor. Her biggest mentors are her parents, who both competed in triathlons. Spivey says the proudest moment of her career is earning her first spot on an ITU World Triathlon Series podium in 2017 in Leeds, England. In 2022 she was the runner up in the Super League Championship Series and fourth overall in the World Triathlon Championship Series.

What is your favorite thing about triathlon?

I love that we have the variety of doing three sports. Growing up as a swimmer, I found that it became very monotonous. But when I can go out for a trail run, or explore new roads on a bike, it makes the mental grind of training a bit easier and more fun.

What are your pre-race routines? Any superstitions? Do you have a lucky charm or item you can't train or compete without?

My pre-race routines are basic. I usually order fried rice the night before, and the next day I generally watch the broadcast of the race from the year prior while I braid my hair and add a bit of sparkle to it. A while back, a friend of mine gifted me hair glitter called Unicorn Snot and I have worn it in races ever since.

Who in your life has been instrumental to bringing you along in your triathlon career?

Greg Mueller who introduced me to triathlon and did a very good job to develop me at those early stages while I was still in University and worked full time. Paulo Sousa who had been my current coach for the last six years and has developed my run and helped me become the all-around consistent athlete I am today. Also, my parents, my dad for introducing me to riding with his strong cyclist friends, and my mom for her passion for swimming.

What would people be surprised to learn about being a professional triathlete?

Unlike most professional sports, triathlon at the highest level is all consuming. We do anywhere from two to four sports per day, which requires nearly all of our time and energy. There isn't much room for other normal-people activities. We also do every other mundane chore ourselves, like groceries, meal prep, excessive laundry, travel planning and booking, race meal organization etc.