Kolby Granville


As a City Council member in Tempe Kolby works in partnership with many groups and Tempe staff to try and improve the cycling infrastructures in Tempe.  "Nobody could move the ball on their own, but a great staff and a great cycling community of advocates, with a few council members to push their ideas, really can make changes."    

Kolby Granville is a teacher at Tempe Prep, a Tempe City Council member, lawyer, and started Tempe Ice Apparel, a sports clothing apparel line.  "As far as how I self-identify, that hasn’t really changed in years.  I’m a teacher, traveler, writer, runner. That’s who I feel like on the inside."

 Message from Kolby:

"Whatever sport you do own it. If you cycle, you ARE a cyclist. If you run, you ARE a runner. Regardless of times. Everyone is at a different place in the years they have been training, in their ability levels, and where they are in their training cycle. When you start off, you want to compare yourself to others, and think, 'if I'm not as fast as her, I can't call myself an athlete.' Blah! As the months and years go by, you will realize the race is only with yesterday's version of yourself."


What changes, if any, would you like to see in the bike community as a whole? What actions need to be taken for that to happen?

We are in this weird limbo period where we are adding bike lanes to main streets, but not protecting them.  Adding a bike lane to a 45mph road gets the hard core people using them, but keeps the majority of people on the (very unsafe) sidewalk.  We need to start understanding that the only way to get more casual riders on bikes is to build protected bike lanes.  It’s happening everywhere else in the world, it’s time it started happening in the US and in Tempe.

Cycling accomplishments? 

I’d say my best cycling accomplishment is doing 112 miles in Ironman in just over 6 hours at a pace of about 18.2 mph. For me, that’s a really solid pace.

What resources helped you the most in reaching those goals? 

I’m not really great at doing rides with other people.  I’m a member of Landis, and LOVE it, but most of my long rides on do by myself.  The biggest help has really come from being able to talk to my friend John Menard, back East, who rides bikes a great deal.  I call him every few weeks when I have a bike question.

Cycling regrets or disappointments? 

I was doing an Olympic length triathlon and got a flat tire about 5 miles in.  When I went to change the tube I realized I’d changed a flat the week before and never replaced my backup tube.  I walked my bike all the way back in.  A few people offered me a tube, but I figured at that point I’d already lost so much time on the race it wasn’t worth changing the tube.  That one really burned.  I should have walked the bike the entire rest of the course.  I will never, never, DNF a race again.  Even if that means me doing the course all night after it’s closed and they have shut the timers off and gone home.

What could you have done in preparation to avoid it?

I could have taken the race more seriously and gone through a usual pre-race routine.  I don’t really take an Olympic length triathlon or shorter too seriously.  I typically just show up and do the race.  I probably should show races that are shorter in length more respect.

What weaknesses or specific obstacles were the hardest for you to overcome during training? 

Two things.  First, getting up early.  I hate it.  I’m a night owl and can’t stand getting up early.  Second, I don’t eat as good as I should.  I eat well, but for a person in training, I don’t eat enough veggies.  It’s kept my weight about 5-7 pounds over where I should be for racing.

How did you overcome training obstacles? 

When I oversleep for a ride, I do the ride anyway.  On more that one instance I’ve been starting my long rides at 9am in the summer.  It’s miserable, but I do it anyway.  As for food…no real solution yet.  Let me know if you think of one!

How has cycling benefited your life?

Training for triathlons, and eating better, moved my weight from 176 pounds to 138 pounds.  I try to race around 140 pounds. When I started training my resting heart rate was 92 bpm.  Now, my resting heart rate is about 58 bpm and my VO2 Max is about 53.



  • Almost only tri riding. 


TRAILS/ROUTES  (Road Riding)


  • I really enjoy long rides as alone time to think.


Do you think it is important to have a role model? If so who is yours and why? How have they changed your life? 

Yes!  Role models are so important.  Not because they are real, but because they are people that represent points of infinite traits; courage, wisdom, justice, friendship, etc.  As long as you know your role model is actually a flawed person like everyone else, and that you are using them to create a symbol of an idea, they are so helpful.  It gets you a goal as to what you should strive to.  I have loads of role models.  My most recent one is my Uncle Russel.  Nothing rattles him.  And he never loses his temper with anyone.  It’s pretty amazing.  I would also view Spock and Ali as role models.  Lincoln, as cliché as it is, is a role model as well, just for the successful ways he dealt with depression and used that as a way to be empathetic towards others.  I also view Tyler Durden from Fight Club as a role model, in the sense of not allowing yourself to be consumed by things.  The blowing stuff up and starting a Fight Club part, not a role model for me…

Where did you grow up and how did you land in the Valley of the Sun?  

I was born in Rochester, NY.  Lived in Florida, Texas, Arizona, California, Mozambique, China, and Argentina.  But my “growing up" years were in Texas. I moved to Tempe between my Sophomore and Junior year of high school to shoot archery with more of the top archers in the US, and to try and work my way on the ASU archery team.

What did you want to be when you were little and why? 

From the time I was 13-19 years old, all I wanted to be was a full time archer.  Before I was 13 years old, I’m not really sure what I wanted to be.  Teacher is always something I thought about as a career, even from when I was very young, but I didn’t think I was ready to teach yet until I was in my late 30’s.

Currently do you have a morning or evening ritual? If so, are you flexible or strict with them? 

No rituals.  My life tends to be too crazy to have any set schedule.  I’m typically up at 5:30am, and in bed about 1am.

What’s the hardest thing you’ve ever accomplished?

I would have to say the Zion 50km run.  It poured rain the whole time, to the point the race directors were willing to give refunds up to the very start of the race.  You could barely see, and the clay stuck to your feet the entire race.  I think I finished in 8 hours.  I’m sure I was hallucinating most of the last hour of that.  But I never stopped running-ish.

What is one or some of your biggest failures/regrets in your personal or professional life? What could you have done differently to avoid it? 

Hands down my biggest failure was with a relationship of five years that I thought was going well, but abruptly ended badly.  The relationship ended so badly, and so abruptly, and with so little conversation, I candidly don’t even know why it ended.  Probably never will.  I guess that’s the one failure that will continue to stay with me.  I have a sense I should have done something differently, but I’ll really have no idea what that something different would be.  I could go on (for pages), but it’s probably not a unique story. The good part of if it is that it’s what got me into running (and later cycling); trying to get over it.

I fail all the time. But failure is just sort of a part of life and, I’d argue, even a good part of the fun of it.  You take educated risks and some things pan out, and some don’t. Both create the fun emotions we call life. No harm done either way, and you move on.




  • I don’t go to much live music, but when I do go, it tends to be Yucca Tap Room.







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Watch Kolby spit the truth on politics. 

Check out his athletic clothing line