Profile on Dan Anderson

Feature article on Dan Anderson
Interviewed by Karen Dudek

Karen: How many years have you been running?
Dan: 5

Karen: Why did you start running?
Dan: It’s my wife’s fault!  I met her on a bike ride, and we did almost everything together after that. She ran with a group of runners who ran (and still do!) at Tipton Trails on Tuesday/Thursday at 5:30am, so I started running with them also, to share in her life.

Karen: Who inspired you?
Dan: Wow! Long list! My wife, Wendy, and Pam Walden early on, Rich Beal inspired me to wear crazy costumes. Julie Sibley and Tim Rood later on as I started running with others. And I didn’t even mention Merlin, who inspires everyone.

Karen: Why did you join the Lake Run Club?
Dan: My wife…it’s all her fault!

Karen: Tell me about your first race.
Dan: I think my first race was Race The Dead! I ran as a volcano.

Karen: What makes your favorite race your favorite?
Dan: Ha! in 2012 it had to be Indianapolis Monumental Marathon, because I qualified for Boston. But I think the Park to Park has to be one of my favorites. maybe because it’s fun. It’s fourth of July and people are out there to have a good time. Some of the crazy people wear costumes, but it’s really a holiday mindset.

Karen: What race really sticks in your mind for one reason or another?
Dan: The Kauai marathon was beautiful (though some of it was lost on me after mile 15!). What keeps coming back to me is the Park to Park.  I generally run it in a costume. In 2011 I ran it as an 10 foot tall Uncle Sam Hat.  Throughout the race there was a group I kept seeing, I would catch up and then they would take off. One of the times I heard a guy groan and say “Darn, we have to go again”. Next time I got near him, I asked about it.  He replied, “Yeah, we decided that we have to stay ahead of the hat!” I love that! Fun is one of the things I try and put into running. Wearing crazy tights and big costumes is part of that. Running does not have to be all serious!  I probably wouldn’t still be running if it was.  (BTW, I sprinted past that group of runners at the finish! – and afterward they called me over to have my picture taken with them.  They were lifeguards and had all decided to run together.)

Karen: Do you have a favorite route that you run?
Dan: I really like the stretch of the trail from the triangle to Towanda Barnes and back.

Karen: If you could run any race in the world, which would you pick, and why?
Dan: On my bucket list is to run a 100 mile race…any 100 miler.  I’ve done a 50, but 100 just is beyond the scope of reality; so I’d like to try it.  Fifty used to be beyond my reality.

Karen: Which race do you think is the most fun to volunteer at and why?
Dan: I really enjoy leading in Catch the Wave, which culminates at the Lake Run.  The satisfaction of having new runners achieve something they have never done (or never thought they would) is immense!

Karen: What are you training for right now?
Dan: Nothing.  I’m coming off an injury and then will train for Boston Marathon 2014.
Karen: Do you have any superstitions or rituals you go through before a big race?
Dan: No.. pretty boring.

Karen: What’s the coolest piece of running gear you own? (T-shirt, sox, etc.).
Dan: My lightning tights!

Karen: Who have you been running with lately?
Dan: Ray Sevier, Sarah Kelch, Kevin Lee, and the Thursday night group at the lake (what little I have been running).

Karen: What makes you stay with it and keep running?
Dan: I feel better when I am running regularly, but the people I run with make it special.  Even now when I’m not really running, on Saturday mornings I’ll ride my bike down to the triangle to join the Marathon training group, and talk to them as I ride along side.  And I’ll run with most anyone.

Dan running Park to Park in costume.

Dan running Park to Park in costume.

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