1. Did/do you always find running enjoyable? I actually have always enjoyed running. However, the type of run that I enjoy has changed over time. I was below average at sports-ball as a kid, but I was eventually introduced to Track & Field in junior high. I was quick without much endurance, so sprinting was my jam. Distance was the worst and I hated anything longer than 400m. As a grown up, I now love the long stuff and dread the pain of Track Tuesday. Long runs are great for fitness and give me time to reflect on life.
2. What is your favorite distance? My current favorite is the marathon. I tend to be more competitive at longer distances. However, I just started to dabble in ultra-marathons and could see my favorite changing in the future. I also love food and ultras are just eating competitions where the last runner eating wins.
3. What do you struggle with most in running? Consistency is my Achilles heel. I have historically followed up great training weeks with lulls. I know recovery after hard workouts is important, but I cannot rest for too long. Once my routine gets disrupted it is difficult to get it back on track.
4. Do you remember your first 5k, half marathon and/or marathon time? Luckily the internet remembered because I could not recall the exact times.
· 2007 Jingle Bell 5k – 24:50
· 2013 Columbus Half Marathon – 1:54:45
· 2014 Georgia Marathon – 4:35:59
5. What is your advice for someone looking to improve speed and/or endurance? Make sure your family really loves you because running is a commitment and a huge time suck. Afterwards, the most bang for your buck comes from building a solid base and staying consistent week after week. If you are a new runner, set total time goals for the week instead of mileage. In the beginning, it can be hard enough to find time on your schedule for running.
6. What is your can’t live without running gear, besides shoes? Shorts and socks are a must because nobody likes jail or blisters. After that, I will say a GPS watch. I do not geek out about data, but it is helpful for workouts that require certain paces or distances.
7. Ok shoes, do you rotate? If yes, how many in rotation – explain. I only keep two pairs; one for road and one for trail. I also buy additional pairs of the same model once those wear out. I completely understand why others rotate though. I just do not have the patience to try on every pair before a run to figure out which makes my butt look the best.
8. Do you have a mantra that you use when racing or training? I do not have a mantra per se. I remind myself that running is a privilege and I should not take it for granted. There are lots of people, my brother included, that have physical disabilities that keep them from running.
9. Do you ever feel unmotivated to train? If so, how do you overcome? Absolutely! Training with a lofty goal in mind can sometimes wear me down. I make sure everyone around me is aware of my goal, so they help keep me accountable. Having a great support group of runners like Rogue also helps. They are always there when I need motivation or someone to join me for a workout.
10. What is the best thing running has given you? Running has given me a level of confidence that carries over into the rest of my life. There have been runs where I thought I was at the end of my rope physically and mentally, but somehow found a way to continue. These experiences keep me calm and certain that I can succeed when put in uncomfortable situations.
Steve is having an incredible running year and it’s not over yet! Since this summer, he has finished a 100 mile trail race (Mohican 100), PR’d his marathon and half marathon and qualified for the 2018 Boston Marathon. His next race is the Chicago Marathon where we suspect his badass running streak will continue.