Brett grew up in New Jersey, and began swimming competitively 19 years ago at age 10. By the age of 14, Brett was a state champion at the 1500 and earned high point honors at the New Jersey Junior Olympics. Through high school Brett continued to improve as a swimmer, and was accepted at Colgate University where he raced as an NCAA Division I swimmer while earning a degree in Mathematics and Religion. While at Colgate, Brett met Emily who he married shortly after graduating in 2005, and moved to Washington DC where Emily worked for International Justice Mission. (An incredible organization that Brett and Emily still support.)
Brett took a little time away from swimming and triathlon to enjoy married life, and began training and competing again in 2007 while working as a math teacher and academic dean at a small Christian school just outside of Washington DC. In the fall of 2007, Brett and Emily moved to Boston so Brett could attend the graduate school of education at Boston College, where he earned his master's degree in education for teaching high school mathematics. Brett continued to race in Boston and won his first race in 2008 - the USAT Northeast Regional Championship event at Keuka Lake in NY. In 2008, Brett began teaching again, but also upped his game as a triathlete, hiring Will Kirousis of Tri-Hard Endurance Coaching to help get to the next level of competition.
Over the next few years, Brett continued to improve as a triathlete, and committed fully to his goal of competing in the 2016 Olympics in 2011 when he left his job for part-time work at Landry's Bicyles enabling him to train "full-time," or as much as he needed.
Why I do what I do:
"What's this running for?" my mother asks as I race off into the deep blue yonder. Probably intended to be a much less complex question, but I find myself confronted daily with that question on a deeper level.
There are so many more important things in this world than the recreation of racing triathlons. I've spent years teaching students mathematics so I could invest in the lives of our youth. I visit the Dominican Republic annually to serve in areas where entire families live in trash dumps with less money per day than I just spent on my lunch. I have a wife to support, and soon maybe even a family. Yet I have chosen to dedicate this season of my life to the pursuit of greatness at a sport that demands a strict focus on the development of my own physical condition.
For me, triathlons are an exercise in faith. I am striving to become the best in the world, but it is not a sense of pride, self-confidence, or even the support of loved ones that has lead me to pursue this feat. No, I know that I don't have what it takes. It is my faith that God's strength will be made clear through my achievements toward this goal that motivates me, and not just on race day. I pursue this dream excited to see God's strength made clear in every discipline required to get there, from persevering through workouts, to choosing to eat the right foods, to getting to bed early when the party's just getting started. Because this pursuit is not just about the end, it's all about the means. Because on the day I retire from triathlons I want to be a man, a husband, and a father who is able to do the right thing, at the right time, in the right place, and for all the right reasons in ALL facets of life and for the glory of God.
It's not about the race. It's about using triathlons to form me into the man God created me to be. For me, that's what this running is for.
Just the facts, man.
Weight: 150 lbs.
Home town: Berkeley Heights, NJ (living in Brookline, MA these days)
Family: My wonderful, supportive wife, Emily
How many years have you been doing triathlons?
What is your favorite race?
The Vermont Sun Series put on by rushtonsports.com. I try to get in one of their races every year. We drive up, camp out, race in the morning, stop at the A&W for a chili cheeseburger and chocolate milkshake, and then tour VT a bit before heading home.
What's your strength?
Swimming — I've been racing swimming competitively for 15 years. I love coming out of the water in the lead or with the leaders, especially the big guys like Greg Bennett or Matty Reed. It's my favorite part of the race!
What are a few of your favorite things?
Weekends with my wife Emily, when we have no agenda. Vermont — just about any time of year. Burritos from Chipotle. Christmas music (Bing!) and Latin music — the more accordion the better!