The Army captain aspires to one day represent her country in the Olympics.
Kelly Calway knew what she wanted to be when she grew up by the time she was 8 years old. “My mom recently found a paper from when I was in third grade and it had two things that I wanted to do with my life written on it,” Calway said. “One thing was to be a marine biologist, [but] I lost that dream long ago. The other one was to be an Olympic runner.” Considering Calway finished in 25th place at January’s Olympic marathon trials with a time of 2:37, she getting closer to achieving her childhood dream.
Looking forward to the 2016 Olympics, Colorado Springs, Colo.-based Calway knows it’s going to take a lot of training and hard work, but she’s determined to get there.
“My coach says I just need to improve 1.5 percent a year for the next four years and I’ll be running in the Olympics,” Calway said with a laugh.
A captain in the U.S. Army, Calway, 27, has already made quite a name for herself. Accepted into the Army World Class Athlete Program, an opportunity offered to exceptional soldier-athletes that provides support and training to compete in worldwide events such as the Olympics, she was given the chance to train full time for the Olympic trials. “This is the best job I’ve ever had,” Calway said. “I get a chance to train full time and I don’t have to do my regular army jobs [while in the program].”
Even through the tough times, such as missing her daughter’s second birthday when she was deployed in Iraq, she says she loves representing the Army. When she became the first U.S. military person to cross the finish line at the trials, she said it was a great honor. “We have a bunch of really good runners in all the services,” Calway said. “It was a big honor—it was an awesome experience. If you ask my daughter, she’ll say ‘mommy won!’”
Here are some of Calway’s Colorado Springs favorites:
Adams Mountain Café
934 Manitou Ave. #102
“I’m a vegetarian and a huge foodie. We go there usually once or twice a week—it’s that good. For breakfast, the huevos rancheros are better than any other place I’ve ever had them.”
“I really love running around Garden of The Gods, but Red Rock Canyon is just behind my house and is less crowded and really beautiful. It’s tough though; leave your Garmin at home for this one.”
FAVORITE PRE- OR POST-WORKOUT MEAL
1747 S. 8th St.
“I go for the Thursday night buffet. I actually go before my workouts and I’ve never had a bad workout after eating there.”
“I’ve been a middle-distance runner my whole life so I really love the track, but since I’ve started getting into the marathon, I really love long tempo runs. We start in Monument, Colo., at 7,500 feet—it really helped me at the trials.”
FAVORITE RUNNING STORE
121 N. Tejon Road
FAVORITE COFFEE SHOP
Marika’s Coffee House
739 Manitou Ave.
“They have great chai.”
Swirl Wine Bar
741 Manitou Ave.
“It’s a cozy wine bar. We like to be nerdy and go there and play board games. They have crazy drinks like hot butter rum so you feel like you’re in Harry Potter.”
This piece first appeared in the April 2012 issue of Competitor magazine.