Melissa Mantak. Melissa’s history with the sport of triathlon began in 1984 when she entered her first race during college – and won. It seemed like a logical progression to enter a triathlon; after all she was competitive swimmer by age 7, a cyclist and runner by age 12 and, no surprise to friends and family, possessed a competitive streak a mile wide.
Melissa continued to race triathlons for 10 years, competing as a professional for 6 years. During that time, she achieved numerous podium finishes at the World Cup level. In 1992, she placed 3rd at the World Championships in Muskoka, Canada – capturing the overall World Cup Title. That same year she was voted Triathlete of the Year by the US Olympic Committee. In 1993 she added to this impressive list of accomplishments by winning first ITU Indoor World Championship title.
Since retiring from the sport in 1994, Melissa has gone on to earn a Masters Degree in Sport Sciences from the University of Denver. For the last 15 years she has remained very active in the fitness industry as a coach and personal trainer. Currently, she is a certified Level 3 (Elite) Coach by USA Triathlon, a Level 1 (Elite) Coach by USA Cycling and a Performance Enhancement Specialist, certified by the National Academy of Sports Medicine. A strong desire to learn fuels Melissa’s passion to teach others. Melissa attends multiple continuing education coaching clinics and seminars yearly to further her education and experience to help her athletes achieve their optimum performance.
Melissa is also a published author, sports photographer and has worked in radio and television. In 2006, she was named the Director of the professional VMG Triathlon Team. And, since 2005 Melissa has been the official coach for the Tri for the Cure, an all women’s sprint triathlon. She coached the inaugural Tour of Hope, a cross country bike ride to raise awareness for clinical trials for cancer treatments in 2003.
In 2007, Melissa started working as Head Coach to the US team at select ITU World Cup races. She coached in Lisbon and Cancun in 2007. In 2008, Melissa coached at the World Cup triathlon in New Plymouth, NZL and Madrid, Spain. Acting as Head Coach at a World Cup event puts Melissa in a pool of coaches to be chosen to coach at the Olympics and Pan Am Games. In April of 2008, Melissa coached at the ITU PATCO (regional Pan Am championships) where her athletes Jillian Petersen and Matt Chrabot both WON the elite male and female races. She also worked at the Elite Development Camp held in conjunction with the race. At the Olympic Training Center, she coached for one week of a 5 week Elite Development Camp in Colorado Springs.
In 2009, Coach Melissa worked as the Head Coach/Manager of the US Team at the ITU World Championship Series Triathlon in Yokohama, JPN. Melissa also coaches USAT National Team member and 2009 National Champion, Matt Chrabot. Currently ranked 9th in the world.
Melissa started her own coaching business, The Empowered Athlete, in 2006. She has devoted herself fulltime to coaching and training athletes since 1995.
Here is the link to listen or download the call with Melissa: Continue reading