Ryan Haebe Interview | From Collegiate Success to a Tragic Accident and Back to the Trails on his Terms

Ryan Haebe dominated D2 Cross Country and Steeplechase in 2011 and 2012, earning himself and his tam National Champion titles and nearly every award in collegiate athletics. He then earned himself a spot at the Olympic Trials. Ryan was firing on all cylinders and according to those who raced against him, he was a fierce competitor, hard worker, and above all, a good guy and great teammate.

During Ryan’s time at Colorado Western State University (yes, that’s a place), he ran with Tyler Pennell, David Goodman, Ian Butler, and Gabe Proctor a group of guys with varied backgrounds who all coalesced into a truly incredible team. Additionally, a notable college friend and competitor was Matt Daniels who attended rival Adams State.

Ryan Haebe winning the 2011 D2 XC Championships.

This XC championship race from 2011 and this from 2012 (jump to 6:30 with 2 laps to go) are some of my favorite collegiate races to watch. Check them out. Dude was a beast.

Within two weeks of qualifying for the trials, he made a decision that nearly cost him his life and he’d spend the next four months in the hospital, much of it a coma and the ICU. Ryan had to relearn life, one step at a time.

Ryan Haebe in the hospital.

So what’s he been up to? Ryan popped up on my radar last year when he won Canyon de Chelly ultra in Arizona, and I’ve been curious if we’ll be seeing him line up at any other races. Where’s his head? What’s his relationship with running and racing? Does he remember running collegiately? And is he a different person and/or runner than he was prior to the accident?

Ryan Haebe in the Navajo Nation, 2019.

Ryan Haebe Episode Notes

Here’s a short film on Shaun Martin. Cool guy.

Here’s our interview with Travis Macy.

Intro music by David Rosales

Outro music by AJ LeGrand


Gear Talk with Ben

Below are some of the products mentioned in our extended gear chat. Some are affiliate links that’ll kick a few nickels into the UPR coffers, some are just links. Thanks everyone.

Icebreaker Merino wool long sleeve Icebreaker Merino wool long sleeve

rabbit Polartec Delta tops.

The North Face Futurelight Jacket

Kahtoola MICROspikes Footwear Traction GORE WEAR C5 Thermo Gloves Ultimate Direction Ultra Flip Glove, Convertible Running Glove with Stowable Mitt for Men & Women, Medium ALTRA Men’s King MT 2 Trail Running Shoe BUFF Unisex Original Multifunctional Headwear, Black, OSFM

Salomon Agile 5 set

Kogalla light

NATHAN Terrafire handheld light

Aftershokz/Optishokz glasses

Favorite everything shoe: Salomon Sense Ride 3

Topo Athletic Terraventure 2 Running Shoe – Men’s Olive/Red 12

…and here’s Fegy’s recent post about the Terraventure.

ALTRA Men’s Superior 4 Trail Running Shoe

Road: HOKA CarbonX

Road: Skechers Unisex GOrun Razor 3 Hyper Running Shoe

Road: HOKA Mach 3

Long roads: Hoka Rincon

Waistpack: Vapor Krar

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