Here are 16 of the most social movers and shakers on the D.C. area running scene! Each bio was submitted by the individual so all formatted a bit differently (makes it more fun!). Follow these folks to be in the know and to get your daily wisdom, motivation, inspiration, and humor!
1. Margie Shapiro – Tips from a Pro: Margie Shapiro has been a professional triathlete since 2006 (after winning the Age Group World Championship overall by 3+ minutes in 2005). She spent several years focused on draft-legal Olympic-distance racing, qualifying for two US Olympic Trials and garnering USA Triathlon support as a member of several National Teams. In recent years she has turned her attention to non-drafting racing, primarily half-iron distance, and, as one of the top American pros at the distance, has numerous podium finishes to her name as well as several World Championship 70.3 races (including 9th place in 2012). Unlike most pro triathletes, however, Margie splits her time among many occupations. Her first priority is her family (husband Brendan and kids Will & Molly). She coaches runners and triathletes through =PR= Training Programs (and is a USAT certified coach) and co-owns Potomac River Running stores, which she founded in 2003 with sister Cathy, brother-in-law Ray Pugsley, and husband Brendan.
2. Michael Wardian – Ultra inspiring, ultra down to earth: Mike is among the winning most American marathoners and ultra-marathoners. This Dad of 2 has won over 30 marathons. Mike has also set several Guinness World Records including the record for fastest marathon while pushing a jogging stroller, fastest marathon on an indoor track, fastest marathon on a treadmill, AND fastest marathon dressed as a superhero! Mike has been a strong competitor in some of the toughest races on earth, including the Marathon Des Sables, finishing third overall in 2010, and the Badwater Ultra Marathon in Death Valley, also capturing a third place in 2011.
3. Dora Elmore – Dominican trail queen: Marathoner and Ultra Trail Runner. Marathon (x7) Ultra (x4). Mother of 2 kids (Arturo, 15 & Marley, 12), Married to Michiel Van Zadel, runner & triathlete. By day, Project Management Analyst. RRCA Certified Running Coach, Lululemon Tyson’s Run Ambassador, Ragnar Trail Warrior, DCCS Run Leader. Coach with =PR= Training Programs.
4. Frank Fumich – Self-supported philanthropist: Ran from DC to Boston raising money for bombing victims. 60+ marathons in 25+ states An ultra marathon on all 7 continents. Dozens of ultras. 100+ mile ultras: Badwater 135, Leadville 100, Ultra Tour du Mont Blanc ,Western States 100. Self-supported 150 mile stage races: Marathon des Sable (Morocco), Namibia Race (Namibia), Racing the Planet’s 4 Deserts Series: Sahara Race (Sahara Desert Egypt), Gobi March (Gobi Desert China), Atacama Crossing (Atacama Desert Chile), Antarctica Race (Antarctica).
5. Dustin Whitlow – Fast Photog: “If you ask my Mom, she will most likely tell you I skipped walking and went straight to running. My first coach helped make running a joy and I loved the freedom of lacing up a pair of shoes and just going.” That joy kick started Dustin through high school in England and Virginia, and ultimately led to a running scholarship at Mars Hill College in North Carolina. In between sophomore and junior year, Dustin competed in the Potomac River Running Twilight 4 Miler and placed 2nd. At the race he met one of the =PR= store owners, Ray Pugsley. This started a relationship that continues today, as he has run for =PR= since graduating in 2008. Dustin is also passionate about photography. To date, he have photographed everything from road races, to concerts, weddings, and even lucked out photographing the last US Olympic Trials marathon. He also enjoys cycling and rides for National Capitol Velo Club. When Dustin is not running, cycling, or taking photos, he likes to kick back with a tasty craft brew – IPA’s are his favorite! He absolutely loves running, racing, learning from others, and pushing himself harder and faster every year. One day Dustin hopes to toe the line with America’s finest and go for a spot on the US Olympic team in the marathon.
6. Jackie Ho – The Ultra Life: Jackie is a health and sports journalist who recently stumbled into ultra running—quite by accident. But after getting to know some of the most inspiring people she has ever met and witnessing how running could make her a better person, she knew there was going to be no turning back. She is currently training for her first 50-miler in the Tetons this September, after which she will be spending a week out West, solo exploring and sleeping under the stars. That’s what I call girl power! Jackie says, “Even though I’m in the beginning stages of this journey, I feel excited every day knowing that it holds the unsettling uncertainty of taking me places that I’ve never thought imaginable—both physically and mentally.”
7. Jamie Corey – Run like a local: Jamie Corey is a marathoner and the author behind Run the District. She’s also a contributing writer for RunWashington, ActiveLifeDC, and Active.com. When she’s not trying to find the best bagel in town, she’s tweeting at @DCRunster.
8. Jeanette Dumbrell – Fast and fashionable: Started running in late 1999 shortly before turning 30, to help quit smoking and improve fitness. Caught the marathon bug and came from the back of the pack, running 5 + hour marathons to a 3.06 PR. Have run more races then can remember or count from 5K to Marathon and everything in between including a few triathlons. Now combine my passion for all things running, especially the clothing by working for Potomac River Running, and enjoy racing when the body allows, as part of their female masters team.
9. M (Yeah, that’s it. Just M) – Honesty, humor & helpful info: M is the mysteriously anonymous blogger behind @readeatwriterun. A female Masters marathoner and wannabe ultrarunner, M does almost all of her training on her home treadmill in the wee hours of the morning before work. An injury last year taught her the benefits of pool running and introduced her to her fantastic chiropractor, who she credits with helping her BQ in March of this year. Most of her time is spent training/running (or thinking about it), working, or spending time with her DH. In her “free” time she reads voraciously, blogs at readeatwriterun.com and tweets @readeatwriterun where she shares her experiences – both successes AND struggles – and info she finds that could help, interest or amuse other runners. She’s looking forward to her first Boston in April!
10. Rick Amernick – Join a group or 2 or 3: Started the DC Capital Striders Running Group (DCCS) in April, 2006. Nonprofit group reaches thousands of runners in the Washington DC metro area, including Northern VA and into Maryland. DCCS schedules free weekly runs open to all runners regardless of pace or endurance level. DCCS has hosted races for various charities including Back on My Feet, High Cloud Foundation, American Red Cross, Special Love, DC Central Kitchen and Wounded Warrior Project. DCCS also hosts an annual holiday lights run where runners bring toys for the Salvation Army Angel Tree Program. Rick has completed 5 marathons, 2 ultra-marathons, triathlons, centuries, and other endurance events. In his spare time beyond running and managing run group functions, he enjoys spending time with his family, hiking, happy hours, attending Orioles and Ravens games, and quiet evenings with a nice book or movie.
11. Tom McNulty – Kilted Runner: Tom McNulty, 37, is an ultrarunner, Navy Senior Chief Petty Officerand chef to political bigwigs (really). He first started running ultras in 2009 at TNF Endurance Challenge 50 mile here in Washington. His ultrarunning résumé includes finishes in Montana’s HURL Elkhorn 50, Virginia’s legendary Hellgate 100K, VHTRC Massanutten Mountain Trail 100, and the Vermont 100. Tom volunteers his time leading trail runs every week on Wednesdays and Sundays introducing people to new trails or to trail running all together. If he isn’t running, then find him providing the food for the Finish line at two of Virginia’s premier ultra races. An immigrant from Big Sky Country, Tom is still looking for those “mountains” that all the East Coasters keep talking about.
12. Laura Mattis – Social Motivator: Laura Mattis is a force in the local running community. She leads the Tuesday night Fun Run at Potomac River Running- Tysons. She is also a marathon training coach with Potomac River Running’s Distance Training Program. Laura is an awesome motivator, frequently challenging her Facebook friends to weekly competitions and running streaks. Her Facebook group, Motivation & Accountability is a place for runners to share their training ups and downs and to keep each other going. This mother of 3 recently got into ultra-marathons and is constantly helping others to reach new goals.
13. Eric Whitaker – Team Captain: Eric is the captain of the Potomac River Running Race team and is great at organizing groups for workouts. I’ve been a runner since my teens but with an asterisk. At age 25 I took a 15 year break. Six years ago I started back up and haven’t looked back. Some say I’m obsessed as evidenced by the fact that every voice mail from my family starts with “Hey, Eric, you’re probably out running…” I’m okay with that. I do have a real job but I like to say that I work to support my addiction to running. I run, I race, I train, and I coach. When you cram all of those into a typical week, there’s no time left for much else. Through running, I’ve met many of my dearest friends. Through running, I’ve traveled across the US and even crossed an ocean. Through running, I’ve discovered just how great a life can be. Oh, and I should mention that thank to running I’m in the best shape of my life, physically and mentally. So, if you feel ever feel like running away, put on a pair of running shoes and do it.
14. Liz Greenlaw – Fit Foodie: In additions to being a super fast runner, Liz Greenlaw offers Integrated Health and Nutrition Consulting. Her free 60 minute Health History Consultation gives people the opportunity to work one-on-one in a private setting to explore their relationship with food and develop skills for creating a healthier life for themselves and their families! Liz is also available for Workshops for community groups, businesses, and religious organizations.
16. Lauren E. Klumpp – Run the World: Lauren is an ultra-marathoner, marathon coach, and Founder of FOUR Corners Running, LLC. Lauren’s goal in life is to see the world by foot. She plans to run in the most amazing places on earth and to invite people to come along with her through group running travel organized through FOUR Corners Running. Lauren leads a weekly happy hour run group on Monday night’s in the Merrifield area. She is also the Director of Sponsorship for Potomac River Running and coaches the =PR= Distance Training Program.