This week's Runner Spotlight is Allen Strickland. This local runner and blogger spent years documenting his quest to qualify for the Boston Marathon and completed it in 2012. Read his story in his blog post recapping the race weekend. Allen is active in the Charlotte running community. He's a member of the Charlotte Running Club and the co-founder of the Triple C Beer Runners, a running group that meets Thursdays at 6:30 p.m. at Triple C Brewery.
Get to know Allen in today's Spotlight and then join him for a run and a beer at Triple C soon!
Name: Allen Strickland
What is your day job: I work in IT for Wells Fargo.
How long have you been running: I’ve been a runner off and on since the early 80s, but I’ve been back at it consistently since 2008.
How did you get into running: Once upon a time, I played high school basketball but wasn’t particularly good at it. When the team ran around the gym, I would usually lap everyone else which led me to think, “Maybe I should give that track thing a try.” I started running track my sophomore year and thus began my long relationship with running.
What’s your favorite race distance: These days, I think I favor the 10K – it’s just the right mix of endurance and speed. And you can run a 10K in the morning and not be destroyed the rest of the day!
What’s your favorite local running route: I love running the trails in McAlpine Park.
What style of running shoes do you wear: At the moment, I’m alternating between Brooks Ghost (slow/easy days) and Brooks Launch (workouts/races).
What’s your must-have running gear: I feel naked without my Garmin 610.
What’s your favorite music to run to: I don’t always listen to music while running, but when I do, I prefer Wolfmother.
Are you a morning, lunch break or evening runner: I usually run early evenings, not because I want to, but because my work schedule makes it difficult to run in the morning. I’d rather be a morning runner, but what can you do?
What’s one food you couldn’t live without: Tacos!
What’s your favorite place to hang out/refuel after a run: Triple C Brewing Company, every Thursday night!
What’s your favorite way to cross train: I’d like to say I cross train by doing strength training and yoga, but the truth is that I very rarely cross train. I always plan to cross train during the next marathon training cycle, but man, training for a marathon leaves me exhausted so much of the time that cross training never seems to happen. Next training cycle, I swear!
What’s your most embarrassing running moment: Staggering down Boylston Street in the 2012 Boston Marathon.
What’s your proudest running achievement: Crossing the finish line after staggering down Boylston Street in the 2012 Boston Marathon. (Editor's note: there was record breaking heat for the 2012 Boston Marathon that caused Allen to suffer sickness and dehydration.)
What’s your best running advice: You have to run slow to get fast. Slow down on easy/recovery days – it’s vitally important to take it easy so your body can adequately recover. This is the one of the hardest things to teach new runners since it’s so counterintuitive.