Author Archive | Henry Howard

From Couch to Ultra Runner

Molly Badwater 2009 (1)Molly Sheridan was told “she was too old” to run. Since then, she’s completed 50 ultras, including a 138-mile run in the Himalayans that no woman had previously finished.

By Henry Howard

A friend called Molly Sheridan, inviting her​ to run the Marine Corps Marathon, her first attempt at 26.2 miles. It would be fun, the friend advised.

At the time, Sheridan was 48, had a full-time job and was raising three kids. She had a lot on her plate. What she didn’t have was an athletic background. Growing up in California, she swam at the beach and as an adult did some running/walking 5Ks but nothing serious.

She told her friend, “No, it sounds awful. What is that? Twenty miles or something?” Sheridan recalls, adding that she said “no” about 10 times. Then something happened that would change her life. “I was haunted all night, tossing and turning, punching my pillow. Then I thought what have I been doing for exercise?”

And, thus, the quest began. “The first mile out the door was awful. I thought I was going to have a heart attack,” the Las Vegas resident says. Continue Reading →

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Runner’s Amazing Year: Surgery, Boston and Cover Model

Lindsey Hein photoLindsey Hein is a mom, wife, employee and coach — and still finds time to run, including a second Boston Marathon finish.

By Henry Howard

The past year has been full of momentous occasions for Lindsey Hein.

The long-distance runner from Indianapolis learned she had the BRCA 2 gene mutation in July 2013, the day before her first half Ironman. The gene increases a woman’s risk of developing breast and ovarian cancer.

Hein was determined to finish the race, which she did. It turned out to be her “find your strong moment.”

She opted to have a prophylactic double mastectomy in October 2013, with reconstruction in January 2014.

Three months after her surgery, Hein finished the Boston Marathon. Again. Continue Reading →

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From Former Smoker to Boston Qualifier

767953-1011-0010sPittsburgh resident dropped the cigarette habit for greater rewards, including a BQ and dozens of finishes in half and full marathons.

By Henry Howard

Kristy Brown’s running journey has come a long way.

The Pittsburgh resident has reformed herself from a pack-a-day smoker to a Boston qualifier. She has run 16 full marathons and 27 halfs. And she’s not stopping there.

But to know Brown’s full story one must go back to the first days when she laced up the running shoes, back in late 2007. She had been a gymnast while growing up, but running was something she took up in adulthood. And not just running but setting and achieving goal after goal. Up first: Brown knew she wanted to finish a marathon by the time she was 30 so she started training.

She accomplished that feat on May 18, 2008, as a smoker. In fact, she did another half-dozen marathons as a smoker. But she wasn’t satisfied with her performances. Eventually she quit smoking on June 8, 2010, “because I wanted to be able to run faster, so I could qualify for Boston.” She took Chantix for two weeks. “It made me feel weird, so I quit taking it, but never smoked again.” Continue Reading →

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14-Time Marathon Finisher Won’t Let Cancer Win

the_alexLos Angeles runner serves as inspiration to others as he undergoes chemo, trains and completes marathons.

By Henry Howard

Alex Magdaleno learned he had cancer on Dec. 22, 2008. As the diagnosis of Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia continued to sink in on New Year’s Day 2009, Magdaleno set a goal for himself.

His goal? Run and finish the Los Angeles Marathon that May “to prove to myself that I could finish a marathon despite undergoing chemotherapy.”

Not only did he finish the Los Angeles Marathon six months after the initial diagnosis, Magdaleno has completed 14 overall marathons including the Ventura County Marathon on Sept. 7, the day before this interview. For him, it’s the marathon or bust. No 5Ks, half-marathons or theme races. Continue Reading →

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