Heading to Boston: Jeremy Sanders

Meet Jeremy Sanders, SKORA ambassador running the Boston Marathon this year!

Tell the readers a bit about yourself. 

I am a 38 year old Graphic Designer living is Stephens City, Virginia with my wife and 2 boys. It wasn’t until I was 35 years old that I realized I was a runner; and a pretty good one. It has been a wild ride ever since.

How and why did you start running? 

I started running because I needed a distraction; a hobby. I was facing a lot of stress with owning a business, working a full-time job at the same time, trying to manage family time. My decision-making skills at the time were questionable at best. I was drinking almost every day. I weighed over 210 pounds. I was still struggling with depression following losing our first son, Lucas, at birth in 2004. I was not happy.

I remember feeling out of shape when I participated in a relay race with my son, Connor, who was 4 at the time. The tipping point was seeing a photo of myself doing that race. I didn’t want to be that sad, fat guy. So I set a goal to get in shape. It all started with a 4.2 mile run on July 10, 2011. The rest is history.

You’re running the 2015 Boston Marathon. This is quite the feat and requires qualification. What would you say are your top 3 pieces of advice for someone looking to qualify for the Boston Marathon?

1. Prepare. Find a plan online that fits your lifestyle and schedule. If you can afford it, hire a running coach. I failed to qualify my first two tries. With a coach in my corner, I qualified with over 5 minutes to spare on my third marathon.

2. Take time to rest. If you don’t allow your body to recover after strenuous workouts, you stand a chance of injuring yourself. Losing training time to injury can derail any hopes to qualify for Boston.

3. Don’t give up. Like I said, it took me 3 tries to qualify. Some runners try year after year. Make it your goal to qualify, work hard, and you will crush it.

What are your favorite types of workouts?

I like intervals and fartleks. The changes in tempo really push me and I think that these types of workouts are what make me a faster runner.

What is your proudest athletic moment, thus far?

Besides qualifying for Boston, the proudest moment was watching my son crush his 5K personal best time by almost 3 minutes (22:54) at the South Berkeley Christmas Parade 5k in 2014. He was on top of the world, as was I! He has now set his goals much higher and has full confidence he can reach them.

Any pre-race rituals you like to go through? 

I do a series of lunges to stretch out, then I try and get at least 2 miles of running in before a race. I throw in some strides of higher intensity to wake up my muscles. Once I get into the starting area, I just calm my nerves and chat with fellow runners, before I leave them in my dust (just kidding).

How do you feel running influencing your non-running life? 

I am a different person. I am in the best shape of my life. I am more appreciative of my friends and family.  I have the confidence to set goals, both personal and athletic, knowing I will crush them.

I have been able to be more involved in my sons’ activities by coaching every sport. I hope that my own accomplishments show my sons that they can do anything they set their minds to. I also donate one dollar for every single mile I run to The Lucas Fund, a charity we set up in memory of our son. This money goes to help babies and their families at the University of Virginia Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. 

Running has brought clarity and direction to my life.

Which SKORA model is your favorite? 

My favorite racing shoe for all distances is the Phase. I have won a couple 5K’s, a 10K and qualified for Boston in the SKORA Phase.

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