Name: Nate Rathjen
Self-described age group: slowly admitting I’m not a recent college grad anymore (25)
Residence: Historic downtown Leesburg!
Occupation: IT guy
Volunteer roles in the running world: Treasurer, Loudoun Road Runners
Why you run: What’s not to love? It’s free. I love exploring on foot. I meet awesome people. It’s a really time-efficient way to stay in shape. Also, I’d be lying if I said part of it wasn’t being able to eat whatever I want. Food’s a big motive.
When did you get started running: Actually, it all started when I ended up on UVA’s club quidditch team in 2012, my first year there. If you’re wondering what that looks like as a sport, combine basketball, rugby, and dodgeball, move the whole thing outside, and you’re close! Later that fall someone started group runs to work on the team’s conditioning, we became training partners, and the rest is history.
Name: Hannah A.
Self-described age group: Millennial (25)
Residence: Crystal City
Occupation: Pediatric Speech-Language Pathologist
Why you run: Because I can! Running has not only helped keep me in shape but also allowed me to achieve some of my biggest dreams and goals. Plus, living in this area, it’s the perfect excuse to do some local sightseeing!
When did you get started running: I ran JV cross-country all four years in high school and ran here and there throughout college until the summer before my junior year when I decided to train for a half marathon. That was August 2014, and I’ve been hooked ever since!
Name: Tyler Eckhoff
Self-described age group: 30-34
Occupation: 6th/7th grade history and science teacher in the International Academy at Francis C. Hammond Middle School (ACPS) and boys’ long distance coach for T.C. Williams High School (cross country, indoor track and field, and outdoor track and field)
Why you run: This is a very loaded question. I could answer it differently every time I’m asked. Right now I’ll say for me running is nostalgic and uplifting. It’s hard to be in a bad mood post-run.
When did you get started running: I ran 400’s and the 4X100 my junior year of high school but moved to bigger and better distances my senior year. I have been running since.
Have you taken a break from running: After every marathon, I take about a month off to focus on pizza consumption. I also catch up on things that I have let running prioritize over leading up to the marathon, but mainly I eat pizza.
Name: Molly Allen
Self-described age group: 35-39
Occupation: Housing Program Specialist at HUD
Volunteer roles in the running world: I love volunteering at races when I’m not participating. I pride myself on my aggressive cheering as a volunteer. I’m really excited to be volunteering at the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials in Atlanta at the end of February!
Why you run: Because I love running. I don’t think I can explain it better than this quote by Martin Fritz Huber from Outside Magazine- “Running has always given me a sense of joy and time well spent. It’s one of those rare pursuits where, while engaged, I’m never beset by the feeling that I should probably be doing something else.”
Name: Randall Myers
Self-described age group: Masters > 40
Occupation: Emergency Medicine Physician
Why you run: I enjoy training for, preparing for and competing in races
Name: Robyn Kenul
Self-described age group: I’m 32 years old
Occupation: Registered Dietitian
Why you run: I started running as a way to stay in shape, and I keep running because I enjoy working towards a goal. There are always limits to surpass and more PRs to set which makes running extremely rewarding.
When did you get started running: I dabbled with running back in 2013. My sister was a runner at the time and got me into it. I ran a few miles here and there and joined her at our local turkey trot race. I had the idea that running a marathon sounded much more cool so I decided to train for and run my first marathon back in 2015. That’s where my love for distance running began.
Name: Daniel George
Self-described age group: M 30-35
Residence: Bethesda, MD
Occupation: Physical Therapist at ProAction PT
Volunteer roles in the running world: Water boy at multiple MCRRC races, Pacer at Cherry Blossom 10 miler, medical tent volunteer, guide runner for 2004 para-olympian
Why you run: My college coach would say “for fun and personal bests” but currently, for well-being and because it comes naturally.
Name: Julie Peasley
Self-described age group: 40-45
Occupation: Medical Librarian
Volunteer roles in the running world: I have worked a lot of water stops over the years. I also love to help with pop-up cheer stations. If you have run DC Rock’n’Roll in the past five years, you have likely seen me and my friends at the top of the Big Hill as you turn on to Calvert, handing out candy and ringing the cow bells. We will be at the Richmond Marathon in a few weeks, too, so if a devil throws some candy at you, it might be me!
Why you run: I first did it for my health and sanity. I was battling health issues and worked in a high-stress environment. I started walking every day at lunch and decided to see how far I could walk in 30 minutes, trying to pick up my pace. I quickly moved on to the Couch 2 5K program and ran my first marathon a year after that. I now run because I am part of an amazing running group and it feels like a rolling party when we are together.
Name: Gildas Le Moigne
Self-described age group: 38
Occupation: Director of Development at Westminster School, Annandale
Volunteer roles in the running world: I created a 5K fundraiser for my school 3 years ago. I think it is a great way to create a sense of community and engagement. It also promotes a healthier way of living which is so important when you work with children.
Why you run: I try to run away from my wife who is an elite runner. But she always catches me!
When did you get started running: Almost 10 years ago, when I met my wife
Brittany Charboneau tells her fair share of jokes, but she made a serious play for the Marine Corps Marathon record.
Aiming for 2:37:00, the Colorado-based comedian, actress and improv instructor took off after a few easy miles, grabbing the lead from 2015 and 2018 MCM winner Jenny Mendez and hitting the halfway mark at 1:18:05. Mendez eventually dropped out short of 20 miles.
The second half of the race was also not kind to Charambou, who ran 2:36:34 at the 2018 Los Angeles Marathon. She won Marine Corps, running 2:44:47, but given her goal, she wasn’t happy.
“I just didn’t feel great today,” she said. I felt good all week. Everything went heavy. It was a mental battle from the beginning.”