Chris Mosier, 2015
Every day in October we’re looking back at the athletes, coaches and events that made LGBTQ sports history. Every day this month, we’re looking back at our pioneers, the mark they left on our community and on the sports world, plus landmark events and stories that show Courage Is Contagious.
Today: We’re looking back at June 6, 2015, when transgender endurance athlete Chris Mosier earned a spot on Team USA to compete in the sprint duathlon at the 2016 World Championship in Spain.
He was the first, and yes: “he/him/his” are his pronouns.
Five years ago, trans man Chris Mosier competed alongside cisgender men and finished 37th in the overall men’s category of the sprint duathlon out of 117 competitors, with a time of 1:02:45.48.
But he finished seventh in his men’s 35-39 category, and as one of the top eight finishers, he was named to the national team.
In so doing, Mosier became the first out transgender athlete to earn a spot on Team USA, which he told Outsports was his “number one goal” for 2015.
“Many transgender athletes stop competing when they transition categories” he said. “I want people to know it is possible to maintain an identity as an athlete and transition. When I was considering transition, I did not see transgender men competing at a high level in the way I aspired to compete. I am excited to be a visible example for other trans athletes or people considering a medical transition.”
Prior to this accomplishment, Mosier received the USA Triathlon’s Spirit Award. And in May 2016. he made history again by qualifying for a second event in Spain: the long-course duathlon, in addition to the sprint duathlon.
As a trans male, Mosier takes testosterone for medical purposes and has had to get approval from the United States Anti-Doping Agency. This requires medical records and blood tests, doctors notes, and a packet of paperwork. He receives regular tests to make sure his testosterone levels are in normal male range.
On June 5, 2016, Mosier represented the United States at the Sprint Duathlon World Championship in Aviles, Spain, where he completed the race, which was a 5k run, 21k bike, 2.8k run, in a time of 1:06:29. He was the second-fastest American male in the category, and placed 146 out of 433 of all men, and placed 26 out of 47 men in the 35-39 age group.
“I am proud of this moment, not only for my own athletic career, but also for the sports equality movement as a whole,” he said at that time. “This opens the doors for other transgender athletes. I am excited that others can see this moment and know it is possible to continue to compete at a high level while being your authentic self.”
In Santee, Calif., on Jan. 25, 2020, Mosier made history once again by competing in the Olympic qualifying race walk in the gender category matching his gender identity. He was the first trans athlete to qualify for an event in his authentic gender, and although an injury prevented him from finishing, Mosier told fans: “This isn’t the end — on the contrary, this is very early in this new chapter. And I will say now with confidence: this is not my last race or last Olympic Trials.”
“Dreams,” he posted on Instagram, “have no expiration date.”
View this post on Instagram
Dreams have no expiration date. Today would have been the first day of #Tokyo2020. The team for my event was never even set, as far as I know. But every day I’ve thought about the dream & the work (see my lock screen). Today ALSO marks one year to the Tokyo Olympics rescheduled date. I’m so very excited for the athletes already confirmed on teams, and those still in the mix…. Keep working hard – the countdown is on! #transathlete #tokyoolympics #roadtotokyo #olympictrials #teamusa #nuunelite #pickybarsambadassador #nike #nodaysoff #nobaddays A post shared by Chris Mosier (he/him) (@thechrismosier) on Jul 23, 2020 at 4:24pm PDT
That was January 2020. Want proof of the intensity of his pursuit? Check out Mosier’s Instagram from August:
View this post on Instagram
In January 2020 I dropped out of the Olympic Trials with a torn meniscus. I opted not to have surgery and to try anything I could to rehab & bulletproof my knee to return to competition. Today I’m feeling strong #15secondfitness #transathlete #workout #wod #gymtime #recovery #tornmeniscus #legday #legworkout #nodaysoff #nobaddays A post shared by Chris Mosier (he/him) (@thechrismosier) on Aug 13, 2020 at 6:19am PDT
While recuperating Mosier has kept a busy schedule advocating for trans youth across the country, especially in Idaho, where a law was enacted banning trans girls from competing, and they aren’t the only ones endangered by this wrong-headed law.
View this post on Instagram
FRIDAY: the Idaho Senate State Affairs committee is hearing HB500, which would subject girls to an inspection of their internal & external reproductive organs, as well as chromosome and hormone testing. Please help us stop this bill before it becomes law. . If you are in Idaho: – show up to the Capitol on Friday at 8 am to show support – go to the TAKE ACTION link in my bio & write or call the senate committee members – if you have a daughter, tell them how outraged you would be if she had to be subjected to this . If you are not in Idaho: – email or call committee members once to vote NO on HB500 – if you have a daughter, tell them how outraged you would be if she had to be subjected to this in your state – email & call @governorbradlittle & tell him to veto HB500 if it makes it to him . It’s crunch time & we need to show up! All details on things you can do are in the TAKE ACTION link in my bio. . #imagedescription photo one: Chris Mosier stands in the front of a room with round tables and people eating boxed lunches. On the wall behind him is a projector screen with the text, “Idaho HB500 puts all girls at risk.” Photo two is an ad asking people to show up to the cabin no at 8 AM on Friday. . #transathlete #idleg #nohb500 #hb500 #transgirlsaregirls #transisbeautiful #weexist #wontbeerased A post shared by Chris Mosier (he/him) (@thechrismosier) on Mar 5, 2020 at 10:56am PST
Mosier is a Nike BeTrue athlete and earlier this year he partnered with the brand for The Chris Mosier Project, a documentary film:
Follow Chris Mosier on Twitter and Instagram.
We’ll have another LGBTQ Sports history story tomorrow and every day through Oct. 31.