Chelsea was born in 1995 to her parents, Rob and Tracie, and began swimming competitively at a young age. She attended Milton High School and later Minnesota State University, Mankato.
During her high school career, Chelsea was coached by Cheri Zimdars and Tom Lieder. As a part of the Milton high school girls swim team, they won WIAA Team State Championships, Conference Championships, and Sectional Championships in 2012 and 2011. Chelsea also a member of the 400 free really that placed first at high school state in 2012. She was also a member of the Jhawk Aquatic Club and was a NCSA National Qualifier in the 200 IM.
As a freshman, Chelsea was a part of the school record breaking 800 free relay. She also placed 4th in the 200 back (2:05.17), 8th in the 200 free (1:55.68), and 14th in the 1000 free (10:58.95) at the NSISC Conference Championships.