local weather Click for Sun Valley, Idaho Forecast
 front page
 public meetings

 previous edition

 express jobs
 about us
 advertising info
 classifieds info
 internet info
 sun valley central
 sun valley guide
 real estate guide
 sv catalogs
Produced & Maintained by Idaho Mountain Express, Box 1013, Ketchum, ID 83340-1013 
208.726.8060 Voice
208.726.2329 Fax

Copyright © 2003 Express Publishing Inc.
All Rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission of Express Publishing Inc. is prohibited. 

Friday, June 11, 2004


Juggling taxes and triathlons

Grant Folske prepares for another Ironman

Gimme Five
Express Staff Writer

Grab a beer at the Cellar Pub in Ketchum, and he may be the guy with the draft Mirror Pond beer sitting next to you. Have your taxes done and he is the accountant upstairs.

But, enter the world of athletics and Ketchum’s Grant Folske isn’t just any sociable accountant. He’s liable to sprint right past you.

Pictured winning the 2003 Sun Valley Sprint Triathlon, Grant Folske is now committed to Ironman pursuits. Express Photo by Willy Cook.

"I have always been a runner," said Folske, 27, who is also an accountant at Thomas and Johnston, CHTD, a frequenter of the Cellar and the utmost humble athlete.

Folske’s running days, which could take him all the way to the Ironman World Championship in Hawaii, began while he was growing up in the Midwest.

He said, "I lived in a town in North Dakota known for the track teams, and my two older brothers were into track. I followed in their footsteps."

Despite following his older brother’s athletic paths, Folske forged his own identity through running.

"Twins are often identified as the same person," said Folske, who has a twin brother. "We tried to separate ourselves and find our own identity. I chose running and he chose basketball."

The younger of the two by 15 minutes, Folske used running to carve a persona separate from his brother’s. His high school running accomplishments led to track and cross-country scholarships at Moorhead College in Minnesota.

While running in college, injuries ironically became the impetus for a change in Folske’s athletic direction.

He said, "I was injured with stress fractures in my foot and a knee injury. I started to swim and bike to cross train, as a rehab process."

As they say, the rest is history.

Folske competed in his first triathlon in Minnesota in 1999. He currently defends the title as two-time overall winner of the Sun Valley Sprint Triathlon. Also, he is two-time overall winner of the 16.5-mile Elephant’s Perch Backcountry Run—one of the West’s biggest trail runs held in Ketchum.

In the fall of 2003 he added an Ironman to his resume. Folske finished 19th among the 151 athletes in his 25-29 age division and 133rd among the 2,000 athletes at the Panama City Ironman in Florida.

His finish left him yearning to complete another Ironman to qualify for the Ironman Hawaii.

During the past winter Folske began teaching spinning at Zenergy at Thunder Spring to compliment his training for the next Ironman.

"Riding inside is very different from riding outside," he said. "A one-hour ride inside is much harder than a three-hour ride outside because it is hard to stay motivated."

Motivation doesn’t seem to be a problem for Folske, who is currently training for the 2004 Ironman USA Coeur d'Alene Triathlon on Sunday, June 27 in northern Idaho.

There, athletes will vie for 80 qualifying spots for the Ironman World Championship and a $50,000 pro prize purse.

He hopes his finish in the race will qualify him for the 26th Ironman World Championship to be held Saturday, Oct. 16 in Kona, Hawaii.

In Hawaii, athletes must complete a two-mile swim in under two hours and 20 minutes, and they must finish the 112-mile bike ride 10 hours and 30 minutes after the start of the race, and they must run the 26.2-mile marathon in 17 hours from the race start.

Athletes are advised to train for seven months prior to the Ironman World Championship—averaging seven miles a week swimming, 232 miles a week on the bike and 48 miles a week running. Whew!

MT—What’s new with your training?

GF—I am preparing for Coeur d'Alene. Last week I rode from Boise to Stanley.

MT—(Gulp.) How long was that?

GF—It took seven hours. The ride was around 130 miles.

MT—What is the biggest hurdle you have found in your training?

GF— Finding time. It’s hard to juggle working out with work.

MT—When you are training or racing, what is your fuel of choice?

GF—I’d have to say Poptarts. When I’m riding I like to eat cinnamon and brown sugar Poptarts.

MT—What is the your favorite race?

GF— The Backcountry Run. You get so many people from the community. It’s basically everyone you see out on the trails all summer running together.

MT—What is in your CD player?

GF—Kid Rock.

MT—Where is your favorite run or ride in the Valley?

GF—Trail Creek…Corral Creek.

MT—Up to this point, what has been you most memorable race?

GF—The Ironman Florida. It was a great accomplishment for me, and I was really happy that I was able to complete it.

MT—When are you the happiest?

GF—When I’m outside.

MT—What living person do you most admire?

GF— Lance Armstrong. He works the hardest out of any other cyclist, he knows what he wants and he works his a** off for it.

MT—Who do you consider do be the most overrated professional athlete?

GF— I would have to say as group, bowlers.

MT—Which talent would you most like to have?

GF—Being artistic.

MT—What quality do you most admire in a person?

GF—Hard work.

MT—What quality do you most value in a friend?


MT—What advice would you give to those triathletes just getting started?

GF—Be patient. It takes a long time to improve.


City of Ketchum

Formula Sports


Edmark GM Superstore : Nampa, Idaho

Premier Resorts Sun Valley

High Country Property Rentals

The Idaho Mountain Express is distributed free to residents and guests throughout the Sun Valley, Idaho resort area community. Subscribers to the Idaho Mountain Express will read these stories and others in this week's issue.