Cross country and track and field athlete Kevin Lynch has relatable qualities just like you or I. He would describe himself as laid back, light hearted, easy going, a friend to all and goofy. But he isn’t like you or I in the slightest, because he’s faster and goes around a track or course with ease. Lynch also wouldn’t say that about himself because he has the quality of humbleness.
Lynch recently finished up his final cross country season in 2019, a year where he dominated statistically. He ended the WAC season repeating in the 8K race at the WAC Championships and took home WAC Men’s Athlete of the Year honors for the second consecutive season. His victory helped the men’s team win the championship for the fifth time in seven years.
Lynch is also a two-time first team All-WAC honoree, but he isn’t one to bring up accolades or accomplishments. No, he prefers to see his training pay off into results.
“The training and time you put in is very in line with your results,” said Lynch.
He spends up to 20 hours per week running and training. That time spent running is in addition to him being a full time student and having a part time job as well.
Lynch didn’t start out having a passion for running when he was younger. No, he enjoyed playing soccer and basketball, and really wanted to pursue soccer; That is, until he got hurt playing soccer and decided to give running a shot because his older brother ran in high school and enjoyed it.
Spoiler alert: he found out he was really, really good at running.
“I figured running would take me places further,” said Lynch.
Well, running has definitely taken him places further — literally.
Lynch graduated last year with a behavioral science degree and is now pursuing an MBA with a marketing emphasis. Since graduating, Lynch has taken time to reflect on some of the things he’ll remember and cherish the most about his time on the team.
“Just being able to train with my teammates and my friends everyday and going to practice,” said Lynch. “Funny story, I enjoy practicing more than I do racing.”
PRACTICE?! We’re talking about practice? See former NBA guard Allen Iverson for further explanation. But enjoying practice shows just who Lynch is, someone who embraces the grind without complaint and is highly determined.
Sure, he could’ve chosen any of his awards or top finishes for his fondest memories but he didn’t. He didn’t because he’s all about becoming better and hoping to make his teammates better along the way.
Which then explains his favorite part about the sport of cross country and track and field.
“It’s very individualized. I can’t blame the results on anyone else, it’s up to me,” said Lynch. “That’s what I enjoy the most.”
When it comes to inspiration for Lynch, it isn’t what but whom. In this case the “whom” is his wife, Kami Hartley Lynch. She is also on the cross country and track and field teams.
“My wife inspires me the most, she is on the team with me. She’s been injured since I’ve known her, so I’m the bad luck charm,” said Lynch as he laughed.
Lynch explained how his wife has battled injuries and fatigue throughout her whole UVU career. Seeing her persevere and fight back from injuries is something that continues to motivate and inspire him.
If you asked any UVU student or athlete what it means to be a Wolverine, each would give you their own definition, whether applicable to them or to all students or athletes. Lynch summed up his experience as a Wolverine perfectly, recalling back to the time he’s spent as a runner and student at UVU.
“To be a Wolverine means to have grit. We aren’t the fanciest school or have the fanciest facilities. We also may not be the most talented, but we are the most determined and hard working,” said Lynch.
Lynch’s final cross country race came in the NCAA Mountain Region Championships on Nov. 11, 2019 at Rose Park in Salt Lake City. He finished with a time of 31:59.5 and placed 53rd overall.
He is now entering his final indoor and outdoor track and field season. During indoor season Lynch will be running the mile, the 3K and 5K. As for outdoor season, he will be participating in the 1500-meter, the 5K and 10K, though in the outdoor season his main focus will be on the 5K and 10K.
Kevin Lynch is someone who embodies what it means to be a great teammate, to be a student-athlete, to be a hard worker and most importantly, to be a Wolverine.
Photo courtesy of Sportsbyken