UMass Boston Alum Focuses on Treating Whole Self in Third Act as Endurance Coach

Colleen Locke | April 12, 2018
Rob Reinhard '03 speaks to students in Jackie Lageson's juvenile delinquency class

Rob Reinhard '03 speaks to students in Jackie Lageson's juvenile delinquency class
Image by: Harry Brett



The quality of education that I got at UMass Boston – I could not be happier with.



Rob Reinhard ’03 Owner of Tri-Active Endurance

As the city, the nation, and the world descend upon Boston for the annual Boston Marathon, there will be at least one person on the sidelines for whom 26.2 mile races just aren’t long enough. Rob Reinhard ’03, an endurance and wellness coach who owns Tri-Active Endurance in Pleasant Hill, California, would much rather be coaching – or competing in – triathlons and Ironman races.

“I’d rather run a marathon after I get off a bike for 112 miles because then I’m warm,” Reinhard said. “The thing I love most is the journey. It’s those long challenging days when it’s just me and a bike or me and my running shoes out there in my head. The journey is spiritual by nature and you learn so much of yourself by pushing past things you thought you couldn’t do and really looking inside yourself and digging deep for what you need to get through that day, and to me, there are few things like it. And that’s what I love about it, and I know that it offers that to everybody if they’re willing to do it.”

Reinhard started his journey at Tri-Active Endurance in 2010, after working as a program development specialist in behavioral health with the Marin County Health and Human Services Department. Reinhard earned psychology and sociology degrees from UMass Boston when he was 40, after battling addiction to alcohol and drugs. He’s been clean and sober for 20 years now.

“We have one shot – one body, one mind, one spirit – and I spent a lot of years wasting my shot and at the same time I wouldn’t change it for anything because it took what it took for me to get here. Now I recognize the gift,” Reinhard said.

Reinhard transferred from a junior college to UMass Boston because his sister, alumna Pamela Trefler ’93, lived in Boston, and because of the faculty. He speaks fondly of professors like Stefanie Hartwell, Erik Blaser, Sheree Conrad, and Alice Carter.

“The thing I liked most about it is the degree to which they were willing to help students outside the classroom,” Reinhard said. “The quality of education that I got at UMass Boston – I could not be happier with. I had a very holistic experience here that I was able to take with me when I left here and went to grad school and into private practice as a licensed mental health counselor.”

It was in that private practice that Reinhard ended up working with many high-profile athletes. He’s working with athletes again in his current position.  

“I love endurance sports, but it has to fit in the context of someone’s life. We can’t put wives and husbands and kids and jobs on hold because we’d rather go out and swim, bike, or run. Everything’s got to fit underneath that. I find that if I treat the whole person just like I used to treat in clinical work that I get better results and athletes are happier and in it for the long haul, which is what I want,” Reinhard said. “To see the look on my athletes’ faces whether they win or they cross the line for the first time, regardless of the distance – I just love that.”

Reinhard and his wife, Christena, visit Boston often to spend time with Pam, and also his brother, Mike, who has relocated here from California. Rob Reinhard spent the last week of March speaking to UMass Boston sociology classes. His advice: don’t let fear keep you away from anything.

“Fear is a good thing. A little bit of fear is a really good thing, because those best decisions are the ones that are going to scare you the most. It’s a great reason to do it,” Reinhard said.

About UMass Boston
The University of Massachusetts Boston is deeply rooted in the city's history, yet poised to address the challenges of the future. Recognized for innovative research, metropolitan Boston’s public university offers its diverse student population both an intimate learning environment and the rich experience of a great American city. UMass Boston’s 11 colleges and graduate schools serve more than 16,000 students while engaging local and global constituents through academic programs, research centers, and public service. To learn more, visit www.umb.edu.

Tags: alumni , alumni achievements , mental health , psychology , sociology

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