Cadet: Jeff Mullen
Age: 25 | Town: Longmont, Colo.
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to train for a marathon. But Jeff put the old axiom to the test to see just what a rocket scientist can do when he trains for his first marathon. The aerospace engineer ran cross-country in high school, but a tough major in college and a demanding job caused him to cut out running almost completely from his life. In 2011, he started running again, but the workaholic wasn’t able to stick with it. “I’ve started ‘training’ for a marathon a dozen times, but I always seem to lose my motivation because of working too much.”
Finally, this year he decided to make the commitment. “I decided I needed to get back into shape again,” he says. “I missed how good I felt when I was running a lot, so I started running seriously again in April.”
“I’m an aerospace engineer by trade, and I like impossible challenges,” he says. “Being a recovering workaholic, running a marathon seems like a near impossible task for me. I want to prove to myself that I have the willpower to train consistently and run my first marathon!”
Vet: Katie Oglesby
Age: 41| City: Littleton, Colo.
Katie started running has a kid. “I guess it was just something you did if you were part of our family,” she says. She started running 5Ks as a teenager, and continued upping the distance as an adult.
“The marathon seemed like the next logical step after so many years,” she says. “I ran my first marathon (Top Of Utah Marathon in Logan) in September 2002 when my youngest son was 7 months old. I ran it with my mom, and since then I’ve run close to 50 marathons and ultras—I’ve lost track.”
“Running is so much a part of who I am that it’s hard to say what I like best about the sport,” she says. “It’s given me a strong body and mind. I can run 100 miles. That makes me feel like there’s nothing I can’t do. I like that. Running has also given me some of my best friends. When you spend hours with someone on the trails or roads, especially if you’re training for the same or a similar goal, you become close. I have a lot of sweat sisters.”