Friday Featured Runner (series 9)

HAPPY 4TH OF JULY. Today’s Friday featured runner is Bree over at Will Run for a Medal.

Bree’s Running Journey

My name is Brianne but I mostly go by “Bree.” I started my running journey when I was living in DC. It seemed like everyone ran there, so I tried it and realized that running was a great way to get exercise, lose weight, and see the city. I lived on Capitol Hill and I loved my morning runs by the Capitol, Supreme Court, and on the National Mall and that early in the morning, the only people out were runners.  It was like we had the city to ourselves before the hustle and bustle of the day began.  I LOVED it.

In the spring of 2009 I ran my first race, the George Washington Parkway 10 Miler. At the finish line, I decided that if I could successfully complete a 10 mile race, in theory I could complete a half marathon. In October 2009, I ran the Baltimore Half Marathon. At the finish line in Baltimore, I decided to train for a January marathon at Walt Disney World and in 2010, I ran my first marathon.  Running through all of the parks was amazing and the medal at the end was top-notch.  Then on the bus back to the resort after the race, I was surrounded by runners who had just completed the Goofy Challenge.  My eyes lit up as I listened to their race recaps and I knew I wanted to be Goofy too.  At that point, doctors would have likely diagnosed my condition as race or medal addiction!

Flash forward a few years and I now live in St. Louis, MO and have run three Disney marathons (one through the Goofy Challenge and one through the new Dopey Challenge) and 32 half marathons.  I was wait-listed in 2011 for the Disneyland Half Marathon, which is needed to complete the Coast to Coast Challenge, but I FINALLY got in this year, so my 33rd half marathon will be at Disneyland over Labor Day Weekend.  

-What is your favorite go to fuel during long runs?

I drink a glass of apple juice before every run.  Before long runs, I generally eat a granola or protein bar like Luna or Cliff bars.  I am in the process of finding a replacement for Gu since it is far too sweet for me after having given up sweets for Lent.  

-What race is on your bucket list? 

Nike Women’s Half Marathon in Washington, DC.  I didn’t make it in this year :(

-What running shoe brand do you prefer?

Brooks Adrenaline.  I was fitted with this make/model in 2009 and have never looked back.  They are slowly getting more colorful too!

-Your favorite race medal? 

Disney medals are my favorite medals.  I just can’t explain that post-race feeling as you are walking around Disney property wearing your medal and everyone is congratulating you.  It makes you feel like an Olympian!

-What is your best advice you’d give to a new beginner just starting their running journey?

Take it slow.  I hated running at first because I was starting off too fast and my body couldn’t handle it.  You should be able to hold a conversation while you run and if you can’t, slow down.  Also, at races I generally come across runners who pace themselves by using intervals of walking and running.  They will often finish before the runners who go all out at the beginning, only to run out of steam at the end of the race.  Do what works for YOU and if I can do it, YOU CAN DO IT!