5 Things You Should Know About Me: Wendy Thomas

October 04, 2012 at 5:15pm EST | by Barbara Huebner, NYRR News Service

As a runner, 33-year-old Wendy Thomas may be a late bloomer, but everything’s been coming up roses since she first took to the roads five years ago. Thomas, who lives in Windsor, CO, played on her state champion volleyball in high school, and hated every minute of her one season on the track team. But after she had her first child, in 2004, she knew that getting on the treadmill would be the fastest way to lose the baby weight.  Fast forward to January 2012, when Thomas ran 2:34:25 to finish 12th at the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials—in her debut at this distance. Thomas, who joined up with the American Distance Project after answering an ad, will make her ING New York City Marathon debut on November 4. She is on the start list to compete in the Medtronic TC 10 Mile, the U.S. 10-Mile Championships, on Sunday.

  1. I ran my first race in 2007, a local 5K on July 4, and I won. Nobody really knew who I was. The time was 18-something and I remember a local masters runner calling me later and asking, “So, what’s your story?”
  2.  In 2009, I still wasn’t really training but ran my first 10K, the Bolder Boulder.  I finished 11th in the citizens race, and then stayed to watch the elite race afterward. As my husband, Kevin, and I sat in the stadium watching the elite athletes come in, I said to him, “I want to run in THAT race.” He must have thought I was insane, because they were running like four minutes faster than me. This year I finally did it, and it was one of the most awesome things ever. The whole time I was out there in pain I said to myself, “This is what you wanted.”
  3. At the Olympic Trials, I just wanted to cross the finish line in one piece. I thought that on my best day I might be able to run a 2:35, so my time surprised me and my place really surprised me. It’s probably the most fun I ever had in a race. My first thought was that I can’t wait for 2016. I’ll be the same age that Meb was this year.
  4. Whenever I travel to a race, I carry an article with me about how even Kara Goucher gets nervous before a race. It helps to remind me that I’m not the only one, but at this point I bring it out of superstition, too. Before I left for the New Haven Road Race, my youngest son shoved his favorite stuffed dog into my backpack for me to take along so I wouldn’t be lonely, and the article got a little crushed but it will be OK.
  5. My 8-year-old is named Chase, and my 6-year-old is named Tripp. Their grandpa makes fun of me, wondering if I plan to name the next one Fall.

Photo: PhotoRun