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When Skye Moench was a senior in high school, her parents broke the news to her that they wouldn’t be able to afford tuition at Brigham Young University, her dream school. Undeterred, Moench, now 31, headed to Provo, Utah, anyway, taking on multiple part-time jobs to fund her tuition. With gigs including housekeeping, bank telling, and teaching, she was able to pay her way through five years of school, emerging with a bachelors and masters degree in accounting—100% debt-free.
It’s this same discipline and determination that Moench applies to triathlon. Despite having a limited background in endurance sports—she ran track and cross-country while in high school, but only biked and swam recreationally—she’s made a name for herself in just her third full year as a pro. In 2019, Moench, who lives in Salt Lake City with her husband Matt, established herself as a formidable competitor with four Ironman 70.3 podiums, plus a surprise win at the Ironman European Championship in Frankfurt, Germany.
While Moench credits this breakthrough to various shifts in her training—she picked up Cam Watt as a coach in late 2018—and nutrition tweaks, she also thrives on pushing herself and not setting limits on what she can do.
“I’m passionate about getting the best out of myself,” she said. “After college, I quit my job as a CPA to focus on triathlon because I wanted a greater challenge, and I had the self-belief for it.” Now she’s using that determination to come back from a horrific bike crash this past fall, just weeks before she was scheduled to make her pro debut at Kona.
After months of multiple surgeries and rehab, Moench is aiming to make it to the Big Island next year. And as cancellations and postponements put the start of the season on hold, Moench’s grounded approach to her second-act career is keeping her focused and grateful.
“If I ever find myself feeling frustrated, I remind myself that I’m lucky to be able to do the sport the way I have been,” she said. “Doing triathlon is a choice, so I always try to make sure I remember that.”
Skye Moench’s Go-To Workout
“Fartlek-style runs let me keep a strong and sustainable pace throughout. I’ll do several rounds of 90 seconds hard, 45 seconds easy, 60 seconds hard, 30 seconds easy, 30 seconds hard, 15 seconds easy. It helps with pacing, too: If I go out too hard, I’ll suffer at the end.”
Eat Like Skye Moench
Moench takes a no-nonsense approach to her fueling with a simple yet balanced diet.
7 A.M. Old-fashioned oats with nuts, fruit, cinnamon, and honey pre workout.
10 A.M. Toast with cottage cheese and jam. It’s delicious and also gets in a good balance of carbs and protein.
11 A.M. Prep for my second workout with a high-carb snack that will digest easily—like a banana with honey and a little peanut butter.
1:30 P.M. Post-workout recovery drink, like Skratch Labs’ horchata flavor, or chocolate milk blended with a frozen banana. Then another small meal, like eggs, avocado, and toast, or yogurt with nuts, fruit, and granola.
3 P.M. A little snack before my third session: One of my homemade energy bars with dates, fruit, coconut, and oats.
6:30 P.M. For dinner, some form of protein (chicken breast, salmon, or steak) with a side salad full of veggies, seeds, nuts, quinoa, or beans.
8:30 P.M. I’ll snack on a fruit and nut mix, or a square or two of dark chocolate with some berries to satisfy my sweet tooth.