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President’s Corner: Spotlight on Lynne Mortimer and Troy Powell

by Paul Maloney, ERC President

     Our spotlight this month is on Club Veteran Lynne Mortimer and Club Newcomer Troy Powell.  When preparing this article I noticed some similarities:  an emphasis on cross training, rest, and having fun!  For old and new members and runners, Lynne and Troy are great role models and “mentors” with each of their unique experiences.

     This past week, I sat in on a 30th Anniversary Planning Committee meeting with Lynne, Joe Sczyrek, Desmond Duncker, Larry and Lynda Hollander, and Tom and Martta Kelly.  The committee is planning a great party on Sunday December 1st at Mayfair Farms.  (Mark your calendars.)  Lynne was one of the key organizers of the 20h and 25th Anniversary celebrations.  In the section below, Lynne offers a lot of common sense advice to her running and fitness.

1) What is your favorite ERC experience?

My favorite ERC experiences are making new, long lasting friends through runs,events,socials and meetings.

2) What is your favorite running experience?

I love the group runs and Fleet Feet Thursday night and Sunday morning runs.  Racing was always too stressful for me to enjoy the experience.

3) What training methods have worked?

My favorite training methods are combining weekly speed, tempo and long runs, sprinkled with 3-4 mile fun runs, with cross training-yoga, pilates,swimming,elyptical or gym work. This provides better overall fitness and makes for stronger running, as well as deferring injury.

4)  What advice do you have for a new runner?

Don’t do “too much too soon”. It’s easy to get hooked and want to increase mileage and speed rapidly, however that usually leads to injury. Work with a seasoned coach who will guide you accordingly and give you reachable goals.  Continue to cross train and avoid running every single day-you’ll be stronger and fitter for it. Lastly, remember that a day off is also part of the plan and allows the muscles to rest and rejuvenate.

5) What are your current running goals?

I enjoyed many years of successful racing and training, and am proud of all of my accomplishments and awards on the USATFNJ circuit between 2004-9. These last few years, I am enjoying the pure experience of running again, and the club group runs, Fleet Feet Runs, trail runs,etc.So my goals are back to where I started-fun,fitness,social-for now.  Who knows what the future will hold?

     New ERC member Troy Powell is a firefighter for the Montclair Fire Department and a key figure on our club board and membership committee.  Troy discusses some unique and inspiring (and quite moving) running experiences.

1) What is your favorite ERC experience?

Being a newer member and only just recently getting involved, I have found the hosted runs to be my favorite experience so far. Our members welcome us into their home and prepare some very delicious eats!

2) What is your favorite running experience?

My favorite running experience to date was during my first Tunnel to Towers event in 2009. It was the first time I ran it and the first time I ran a 5K in my full bunker gear (firefighter gear). I was pretty shot as I approached the end of the tunnel and I was barely jogging at that point. Well I got tears in my eyes and full of energy as I came out of the tunnel and saw the line of military personnel along the left curb in their respective uniforms either saluting or holding American flags and the line of uniformed firefighters on the right side holding either pictures of the 343 fallen brothers, pieces of equipment dug out of the pile, or destroyed helmets from those we lost. It was an inspiration to keep moving and honor those who perished. Since then, I have run 4 5K’s each year in my full equipment – the Jimmy D Memorial Run in New Brunswick, the Fallen Heroes 5K in Belmar, the Tunnel to Towers in NYC, and the Carlos Negron Memorial Run in Jersey City.

3)  What training methods have worked?

4)  What advice would you give to a new runner?

I just started running in 2006 and have gradually added races and distances each year. As a firefighter, I work 24 hours on and 72 hours off, so I run three days in a row and take one day off. Recently I have gotten more serious about my running and have learned more about speed work, tempo runs, farleks, and long runs. As an uneducated runner, I would try to run each day at the same pace regardless of the distance – obviously not smart. I am also a certified yoga instructor (not currently teaching due to my elected position with the State Union) and one thing I tell my students is to listen to their bodies and surprisingly, I wasn’t applying it to running. I would tell beginners to listen to their bodies and do what feels right that day. Enjoy the experience and pace and distance will come!

5)  What are your current running goals?

I want to run my first Half this year in the fall and I’d like to break 2 hours. This gives me time to drop a few more pounds and then train appropriately. I think it’s achievable even though I’m a bigger guy. I’ve run the Ashenfelter in 42:33 and the YMCA 10K in 54:23 at my current weight so I’m taking it on!!!

Thanks again and I’ll see you out there…

Troy

     Look for Lynne, Troy and myself at various club events spotlighted in our website and newsletter.  Next month, we spotlight Michael Gorman, Sue Palermo, and Desmond Duncker.

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