TSR Runner of the Week-Matt Young

By: Kayla Dodd

I would like to introduce you to our TSR Runner of the Week, Matt Young. He is well known in the running community not only for his love of running, but because of the inspiration that he is to others within the running community. Many individuals refer to him as “Coach Matt”!! Since 2007, the Genesis Running program has prepared new runners to run their first 5k and has also helped experienced runners run their fastest 5k. Through the coaching program created and designed by Coach Matt, runner’s gain the confidence and preparation they need to finish their first event and improve their 5k times.

Matt has been on his running journey for about 17 years, and has had a huge impact on others throughout his running years! His first race was a Sprint Triathlon in Cranberry, PA in 1999. His current PR for a 5k is around 19:30 and his Marathon PR is 3:19.  His current running goals are to continue running and to also encourage others to do the same. “I love to help new runners get started in the sport and equip them to run healthy and enjoy the great benefits of the sport.”

When asked what motivates him to run, Matt said, “I just like it. I enjoy the training as much as the races. I run mostly alone but also have a few good friends that I love to run with. It’s a great thing to have friends that you can run with for a few hours and never have a break in the conversation.”

He has seen some pretty wild and interesting things on his runs throughout the years, but a few things that he has seen a lot are wild animals such as, bears and coyotes and once he saw a copperhead swallowing a mouse. I am thinking this would make me run much faster!!!

He has several upcoming races that he is working and training for, a few of the races are the Frozen Sasquatch 25k in January as a kick off to his Highlands Sky training.  He has several distance races lined up through the end of July 2017. His farthest distance that he has ran so far is 62 miles in the UROC 100k in 2014.

Matt’s dream race that he hopes to run day run in is the, Western States 100 mile race in Auburn, CA. The Western States 100-Mile Endurance Run is the world’s oldest 100-mile trail race. Starting in Squaw Valley, California near the site of the 1960 Winter Olympics and ending 100.2 miles later in Auburn, California.   

He has two favorite running/motivational quotes that he loves. “The hard is what makes it great,” by Jimmy Dugan (from A League of Their Own. But in a race he often repeats, “They shall run and not grow weary,” from Isaiah 40:31.

His best experience from running is the great people that he has had the opportunity to meet and connect with. Through training, running and coaching, he has been able to influence a lot of runners!

He does not have one specific brand of running shoes that he wears, but about 5 brands that he currently trains and runs in. “I like to try different things to give feedback to my runners.” His favorite piece of running gear is his hat!! “A bald man has to wear a hat.”

When asked what advice he would give to a beginner runner, he said, “Start easy. Forget pace and run comfortable. If you can’t carry on a conversation then you’re running to hard.” Running has not only benefited him health wise, but it has also brought discipline to his life that did not already exist before. “And that discipline makes you better at everything else in your life including your job, your family, your finances, other relationships. It teaches us there’s no shortcuts and sometimes things will be hard but it’s worth it. I’ve also found that God teaches me more about Him through His word applied to my running experiences than in any other way, and I love that.” Congratulations to Matt on his great accomplishments and outstanding runner achievements! Team TSR wishes him the best of luck with all of his running goals. Do you know someone who should be the TSR Runner of the Week? Comment below or email kayla@tristateracer.com.

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