Mulvaney proves persistence and training pays off

Matt Mulvaney wasn’t born to run. He didn’t come into the world with a cross-country gene, nor did he go on epic jogs as a child. He became a standout the old-fashioned way: he trained, learning valuable lessons along the way.
Mulvaney, a senior, grew up in the small town of South Hadley, Massachusetts, at the foot of the Berkshire Mountains in the western part of the state. He attended South Hadley High School where, as a member of the track team freshman year, his interest in running grew. Even then, Mulvaney admits that he wasn’t passionate about the mundane feeling of running in circles. One year later he got the approval to start a cross-country team for South Hadley.
“I think cross country is more natural competition…distance races on a track can be pretty heinous,” Mulvaney said. “[With cross-country] the scenery is nice and it feels more natural to be out running through the woods.”
Mulvaney cited his parents as highly positive role models in his life, always willing to support and stand behind him whether it was in athletics, academics, or music. He conveniently combined these three at UM to make his college career more than worthwhile as a Music Business major.
“I think it’s a good experience; I was able to be really involved in the School of Music [and Business], so it’s the best of both worlds,” Mulvaney said.
He hopes to pursue a Master’s Degree in music after graduation this May. As for the future of the team, Mulvaney says he’s not worried.
“There are a bunch of new guys on the team and they’re headed in the right direction,” Mulvaney said. “Coach [Mike] Ward is just awesome, he gives every guy on the team every opportunity to excel.”
Mulvaney spent the summer of 2002 in Boulder, Colorado with some of his best friends, all of whom are members of the Hurricane cross-country team.
“My teammates are great; I have a great time with them,” Mulvaney said. “A lot of them are more than just my teammates.”
When healthy, Mulvaney trains by running between 75 and 80 miles per week. He admits that late summer and early spring are more difficult to run in, thanks to South Florida’s tropical climate, but he prefers the winter weather here to the blistering cold of Massachusetts.
Mulvaney has highly enjoyed his career as a ‘Cane. His biggest goal is to qualify for the national championships.
“Running for Miami is a cool experience because you get to compete at a very high level-it can be pretty intense,” he said.
Mulvaney finds success in limiting variation in his running patterns.
“I guess the most important thing for distance runners is to be consistent across the board,” he said. “That’s probably the hardest thing, trying to be consistent day in and day out.”
Mulvaney appears to have consistency both in running and in his daily life down to a science. He continues to pave the way for those to follow as he leaves his mark at UM on the trail and in the classroom.
Melissa Teich can be reached at