Courage to Run (April 13) Race Director Freida Edgette shares her personal journey to race director and the mission her race advances.
Name: Meg Ryan
Self-described age group: F 35-39
Residence: Takoma Park
Occupation: Designer at darbstudio, mother, creative maven
Volunteer roles in the running world: I started a local running club – Takoma Park Road Runners – this past fall to bridge a connection to many of my fellow neighbors I would pass along our footpaths and trails. Since my return to running last spring, I was excited to grow my running community all over again and feel a sense of camaraderie in numbers. I also co-captain the spring running club at my daughters’ elementary school which aims to get kids ready to participate in the TKPK Safe Routes to School race in early May. We work on the basic FUNdamentals of running but most of all its exciting to see them enjoy racing each other down the field.
Why you run: I believe the majority of the reasons remain the same but now as a mother of two little energetic girls, it’s added new meaning. I run as meditation (never been a sit down “ohm” type). I run to reclaim my time and embrace the power of me. I run to be a stronger, more positive and supportive member of my family. I run to challenge the extent of my capabilities and of course, we all love the fact that here in the district the journey is sometimes best done on foot.
You may not know their names, but you probably know their brands.
If you’ve been to a race expo, attended a brand-sponsored event, or even participated in a fun run at your local running store, odds are you’ve encountered a footwear brand representative. They are the hidden people behind your favorite running shoe brands, working across the region to make sure their brand and products are properly celebrated and understood.
The job description of a footwear brand rep is not easy to describe, admits D.C.’s Brennan Schwab, who will soon be celebrating his two-year anniversary as a Brooks rep this April. “It’s kind of a mix between sales, education, and marketing.”
Put in simple terms, the job of a footwear brand rep is to interact with stores who sell that brand’s product. Reps ensure that the sales associates at those stores understand the product, know how to sell it, know what’s coming up next, and to assist with any events, education or promotion.
In November of 2010–fewer than four months after he conquered the legendary Western States 100 mile endurance run in under 27 hours, and about a month after being diagnosed with stage four lung cancer–Mike Broderick passed away peacefully just days shy of his 54th birthday.
Those closest to Mike, knew him as an avid ultra-runner with a sharp wit, a big smile and an abundance of enthusiasm for all things running. For the rest of the running community, he was best known as a coach, a mentor and a teacher. He was a bit of an evangelist, preaching his love of running to everyone who made his acquaintance. Mike, to his running disciples, was well known for his ability to respond in deep scientific detail to very simple yes or no questions.
That legacy has kept a popular training group in his honor – Broderick to Boston, going eight years after his passing.
- Three Loudoun Valley relay teams won national championships over the weekend, with two setting national indoor records.
- Distance Medley Relay: 9:54.41 (national record): Jacob Hunter (1200 in 3:01.331) Akere Simms (400 in 50.908) Connor Wells (800 in 1:55.96) and Sam Affolder (1600 in 4:06.205)
- 4xMile: 17:01.81 (national record): Kevin Carlson (4:22.26), Connor Wells (4L21.456), Sam Affolder (4:06.192) and Jacob Hunter (4:11.901). Loudoun Valley also had two other relay teams in the top eight.
- 4×800 7:40.49: Jacob Windle (1:57.453), Connor Wells (1:57.046), Sam Affolder (1:51.368) and Jacob Hunter (1:54.619).
- At the NCAA Division I Indoor Track and Field Championships, Heritage alumna Weini Kelati (New Mexico) finished second in the 5,000 meters and third in the 3,000 meters, the Georgetown distance medley relay team of Jack Salisbury, Lawrence Leake, Ruach Padhal and Nick Wareham finished third; Patriot alumna Rachel McArthur ran on the Villanova distance medley relay team that finished fourth and Georgetown’s Joe White finished fifth in the 800 meters.
- Montgomery County Parks Natural Surface Trail Manager Bob Turnbull was named “Trail Builder of the Year” by Mid-Atlantic Off Road Enthusiasts, a mountain bike riding and trail building organization.
Dan Sullivan, the national sales manager for men’s performance at Skechers, takes us through his career from college football player and coach to running retail enthusiast and career at Saucony to his latest stop in the industry.
Name: Brad Byrnes
Self-described age group: Pre-Masters (almost 40)
Occupation: Federal Police Officer and former head XC coach at Bishop Ireton HS
Volunteer roles in the running world: I’m one of the few that can claim membership in the old Pacers Ambassador program. That was a long time ago and I haven’t volunteered a lot since then…that needs to change. I did coach the Boys on the Run program at the Grace Episcopal Elementary School for 5+ years which was a lot of fun.
Why you run: Mostly to race and compete against others but I’m always challenging myself as well. As we get older, beating our old selves becomes more and more of an obsession. Running is also my time to decompress and escape for a bit.
When did you get started running: I tried every sport in the book but nothing really caught on. A high school friend suggested I come out for the track team so I did that my sophomore year. I ran my first XC season that fall of my junior year and the rest is history.
Have you taken a break from running: My first two years of college I really didn’t run much at all and instead spent more time with weights in the gym and playing rugby. The rugby guys liked me because I had endurance and didn’t drink which meant there was at least one sober player at our matches.
Less than a week ago, Patrick Reaves was on the starting line – and on the list of “Olympic hopefuls” – for an eight-mile race in Atlanta. This was a special event held to preview the course for the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials, now less than a year away.
Reaves’s result will tell you that he ran 42:14, 5:09 pace, to finish 33rd, and that he lives in Portland, Ore. What it will not tell you is that the 34-year-old runner was actually racing in his hometown, the city where he ran his first marathon as a 19-year-old club runner at the University of Maryland.
And while his result indicated — and Reaves himself will confirm it — that a fellow Nike athlete, and three-time national cross country champion, Chris Derrick, tagged along doing a tempo, it will not tell you that Reaves is a professional in the more traditional sense. He’s not paid to run; instead, he’s paid to guide Nike’s social impact strategy, a position that connected him to Bowerman Track Club’s elite corporate team when he and his wife, Valerie, moved to Portland in 2014.
Reaves’s result also will not tell you how he earned the opportunity to be on the starting line: how, in December, at the California International Marathon (CIM), his half marathon split of 1:08:47 was a personal best. He then nearly PRed again, covering the back half only six seconds slower.
This is how Reaves chopped approximately six minutes from his personal best to clock 2:17:40 and beat the sub-2:19 men’s qualifying standard for the trials. Now he’s a year away from competing in the event back in his hometown where his marathon journey began.
I get asked a lot how I can run for so many hours and hours … and hours. My answer is always the same: I love my trail running friends. So much.
They are the reason I drag myself out of bed before dawn to shiver through freezing temperatures, pouring rain or miserable heat. Sometimes we run extra long because we need a little more time to catch up. Sometime we cut it short because the post-run parking lot party is just too tempting.
If there’s one thing I’ve learned in my decade of trail running, it’s that crazy travels in packs, and there’s nothing like mutual suffering to forever bond you with a bunch of stinky weirdos.
In 1967, college student Doug Edwards fired the gun to start a race at a track meet for the first time.
“My track coach at the time handed me a gun… and a box of shells and said you can earn $5 starting a track meet down at the local high school,” Edwards said. “And I thought that was like dying and going to heaven. And so I did. And it just sort of always stuck with me.”
After a break from officiating that included graduating from college, serving in the Army, getting married and having children, Edwards, now 72, has been starting races at track meets since the late 1980s.