Enrico Quilico is not your average teacher. He is not only an inspiring individual and a workaholic, but he is also a disciplined athlete.
In 2016, Enrico took part in the Ironman triathlon. This race is an extreme, world renowned racing franchise that takes place in various locations each year, followed by a World Championship. The “Ironman” is one of several long distance triathlon races organized by the World Triathlon Corporation. The particular race that Enrico participated in consisted of a three-point-eight kilometer swim, followed by a one-hundred-eighty kilometer bike ride, finishing with a forty-two kilometer run. In total, Quilico conquered over two-hundred-twenty-five kilometers of terrain.
Enrico has been participating in marathons for the past ten years. He has ran one full Ironman, as well as other various Olympic distance triathlons. As a whole, he has participated in over twenty triathlons over the past ten years and is extremely passionate about the races. For Quilico, the races are an integral component not only for his physical health, but also, for his career as both a teacher and a doctoral candidate. He believes the races teach him unequivocal discipline and the demonstration of achieving a goal through hard work. Quilico then applies the same strategies to teaching that he does to training and running races. However, he wasn’t always this way.
During his youth, he was not very active, competitive or athletic. After high school, Enrico suffered a life threatening accident while riding his motorcycle on the highway at the age of twenty-three. The accident resulted in a traumatic brain injury and put him in a coma for nearly two weeks. However, he pulled through and recovered. After spending two months in the hospital, Quilico then spent two years in rehabilitation. It was in the rehabilitation department where actually had to re-learn how to walk, talk, and speak again. This near death experience was a “wake-up call” for him and also where he fostered a new outlook on life. He grew motivation to return to school, as well as started taking his physical health more seriously. In 2008, Quilico participated in his first sprint triathlon and fell in love. From here, he set the goal of completing a full triathlon. In 2016, in recognition of ten years after his accident, Quilico set the goal and completed his first Ironman triathlon; His proudest achievement. He was also able to raise over $10,000 for Brain Injury Canada, a post-trauma research foundation based in Ottawa. Recently, he has participated in the half Ironman, which took place in Montreal last September.
According to Quilico, his greatest athletic accomplishment is undoubtedly his participation in the Ironman races. He stated that the 2016 triathlon was the “high point” of his life as he completed the Ironman in just twelve hours. The race is restricted to a seventeen hour maximum time limit. Also, in 2011, he won a national prize in the eight-hundred meter swim at the Master Swimming Canada competition, which also included a gold medal.
Enrico re-enrolled at Concordia University in 2012, eventually earning a Bachelor of Education degree. Then, in 2015, he earned a (research-based) Master’s degree from McGill University in Kinesiology. He is also a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Toronto where his dissertation revolves around the research of community-based exercise programs for people who suffered from traumatic brain injuries. His research is being supported by the federal and provincial government.
Finally, he found TAV College. First employed as a part-time fitness instructor, Quilico quickly came to assume more responsibilities and was eventually brought on as an English teacher at TAV. Aside from his academic life, he is a personal trainer at the downtown YMCA and runs an adapted physical activity program for people who have had traumatic brain injuries. Further, he assists the intellectually disabled and others with post-traumatic brain injuries as a small way to give back. He also holds seminars with teens at the gym about the advantages of a healthy lifestyle. This teacher indefinitely has a story not only worth telling, but one that we can all learn from.