by Kevin Barrett
Jeremy Brown of Fredericton will compete in the Port City Challenge, tackling the 5k runs on Friday August 12 and Saturday, August 13 and the 10 k race Sunday, August 14 during Marathon By The Sea.
He will turn 30 next month and as a youngster, was a soccer player, which helped him get introduced to running in the first place.
However, when he was in Grade 7, he quit soccer because of plantar fasciitis and it led to some weight gain which again led to his decision to run. Of note, he met his wife while he worked at Zellers, when he was working there for about 10 years. They got married on Oct. 12, 2014 and the couple has two cats – Gizmo and Ringo.
These days, Jeremy is a supply teacher, working mainly in high schools in Fredericton. In fact, he is heading into his 7th year of supply teaching, seeking a permanent full-time contract for the coming school year.
He’s been a runner for about seven years and says it turned his life around. So we asked him some questions about his journey for the Running Whys.
When did you start to run?
I started running in the summer of 2009.
Why did you start to run?
I suffered through depression and I decided I needed to make a change in my life. After being overweight since middle school, I decided the biggest change I could make, and one that I thought would make me happier, was to lose weight. I never enjoyed gyms or weight lifting, so I decided to start running. Although I struggled with running for the first few months, I eventually got to the point where I needed to run 3-4 days a week or I felt off. I loved running and I couldn’t imagine not doing it anymore. I was able to lose 70 pounds running and I completely turned my life around (and met the love of my life during that time).
Many people have goal for a particular year – what were/are your big goals for 2016 and beyond?
My goals for 2016 were to run my first half and full marathon. I was unable to complete my training for my half marathon due to a knee injury but after believing my injury was cured, I decided to try the half marathon anyway as I was already signed up. I completed my half marathon at the Fredericton Marathon in Fredericton NB on May 8th 2016 in a time of 2:14:14. I am signed up for the Port City Challenge in Saint John NB, where I am supposed to run a 5K Friday night, 5K Saturday, and a full marathon Sunday. Due to the fact I am still recovering from my knee injury and I have not been able to complete my training, I will not be able to complete that goal this year. I will instead be doing a 5K, 5K, 10K in Saint John with the hopes of completing my full marathon next year.
What is your most memorable run? Maybe there are two or three?
My most memorable run to date would be the 38th Annual Fredericton Marathon, as it is where I completed my first and only half marathon.
My second most memorable run would be the 1st Annual Port City Challenge in Saint John as it is my favorite run every year for two reasons. First, it is so much fun to run back-to-back-to-back races in a three-day span. Second, I love the course in Saint John, the view is amazing and although I believe this to be unusual for a runner, I love the thrill of running a hilly course.
My third most memorable run would be the 36th Annual Fredericton Marathon as it was the first race I ever entered. I had been running for years and I loved running but I never had the courage to enter a race as I wasn’t sure I would be good enough. My wife convinced me to run in that race with her and I fell in love with the race atmosphere and wish I could run a race every weekend.
Do you have regular training partners, a regular training route?
I don’t have anyone I usually run with, although my wife and I both run, we do not generally run together due to different paces that we prefer to run. My regular training route is a 6.1 KM loop in Fredericton NB that includes running across an old train bridge that has been converted to a walking bridge and across one of the city bridges. The loop is mainly along the water and provides some great views.
What do you like most about running?
I love the feeling I get from running – the runners high. I also like having time to just think and enjoy myself as I run.
Do you have any other thoughts about running you would like to share?
If you have never tried running, try it. When you do try it, don’t give up on it if you don’t enjoy it at first. It took me months to get to the point where I loved running but when you do get to that point it can change your life.