Rob Stewart, Hamilton Ohio, Purchasing Manager, 42
What inspired you to start doing races?
My Father. He was diagnosed with lung cancer this time last year and I knew I had to make a change in my life. So I stopped smoking May 3rd 2015 and started Running June 23rd.
Do you walk, run or run/walk, swim, cycle, do obstacles?
I run and run/walk to help me train.
What distances do you do?
I’m training for a full marathon.
What do you feel is your greatest race accomplishment?
Setting a new PR of 27:31 in the 5K this past weekend.
Favorite race and why?
Favorite race so far is the Turkey Trot 10K that I did last year. I love this race because it was my first event, and I was proud of my accomplishment of just finishing.
Do you travel for races?
I have not traveled yet, but I do see that as a possibility.
Does your race schedule become expensive?
So far no, but I see that happening. I have a goal to run in at least a 5K event every month this year.
How do you afford to make it happen?
I budget my money pretty well. I also register early to take advantage of the discounts.
Must-have gear on race day:
All I need is my Garmin watch and I am set.
Weirdest place you’ve ever chafed:
Still new to it all, so I haven’t had this yet.
Do you prefer to run in warm weather or cold weather?
I like warmer weather, but will run in anything. It’s only cold if your standing still!
Favorite pre-race meal/snack:
Oatmeal and bananas.
Weirdest/funniest thing you’ve ever experienced at a race:
Funniest thing is that I was even at a race. I swore I would never run again after I got out of the Army, but here I am a full-fledged runner.
Most awesome moment you’ve ever had at a race:
I think it is awesome that I completed my first race.
Your favorite part of participating in races:
I love all the support that all the runners give. I think for most of us it is not about winning or losing. It is about moving and beating yourself.
How important are awesome medals to you?
Medals are the last thing on my mind. The only one I want is from my first marathon coming up in May.
Best medal you’ve earned so far:
Don’t have one yet.
Do you prefer to run alone or with a buddy?
I am a loner when it comes to running, but I see the value in groups. So I have joined a group for my Saturday long runs.
Favorite song on your playlist:
Foo Fighters, The Pretender
Who is your race hero and why?
Any person that completes a race. It isn’t how fast a person can run. It is the fact that you are lapping everyone on the couch.
What is the top race on your bucket list?
I would like to do any race down at Disney.
What has been the best physical side effect of your participation in races?
My legs are very defined these days. I had no idea they could look this good.
Your advice for others who might be intimidated by signing up for a race:
I find that if I just register, I have to do it. I hate wasting money, so I get it in early so I have plenty of time to train.