TSR Runner of the Week-Malayna Bailey

By: Kayla Dodd

Congratulations to TSR Runner of the Week Malayna Bailey! She has been on her running journey for 7 years now and is loving it. Her first race was in August of 2013 and was the Alissa and Aubree Cantrell Memorial 5K in Kanawha City. Her running goals consist of keeping running as part of her life. She said, “I want to keep running a part of my life for as long as God allows and to always be improving whether that’s by adding distance, finishing more races, or improving PR’s.”

When asked what motivates her to run she said, “Several things: 1.) The feeling of personal accomplishment after completing a long or difficult run. There is nothing like it and you really can’t trade it for anything. 2.) Being a part of the running community. I love being able to share a run or running stories with friends 3.) Overall health and wellness. If I haven’t set a running goal for myself, I easily become a couch potato. Running has helped me become a healthier version of myself.” Malayna said that it is always neat and cool to see the different types of people out for a run. ‘Runner’ doesn’t always have to mean skinny and fast. Anyone can be a runner!!

Malayna’s upcoming race calendar consists of 2 distance races: the Charleston Distance Run in September and the Peak to Creek Marathon in October! Her dream race is of course, the Boston Marathon. But more realistically, it will be a dream for her to finish the Peak to Creek Marathon in Jonas Ridge, NC this October!

Her favorite running/motivational quote is also more of a life quote for her as well, but it also applies to running: “Wherever you are, be all there” as spoken by the late Jim Elliot, martyred Christian missionary to Ecuador. Malayna said, “No matter where I am in life or on a run, I always want to give it my all.”

Her best experience from running has been the strengthening of friendships, finishing her first half marathon, and feeling like she’s good at a sport. “I’m not the most coordinated individual, but I can strap on some running shoes and at least be somewhere in the middle of the pack.”

When asked what her favorite brand of running shoes are, she said she tends to favor Asics! Her “I can’t run without this item” is her GPS watch….if it’s not on the watch then it did not happen! Her farthest distance so far that she has ran was the half marathon (13.1 miles) but that is about to change this fall! Her current Half Marathon PR is 1:57:12, her 10k PR is 51:58 and her 5k PR is 25:57.

Her advice to a beginner runner is simple…sign up for a race. “Once you give yourself a time limit and pay money to run a race, you’ll push yourself to train harder. And crossing the finish line is SO worth it.”

Congratulations to Malayna on all of her running accomplishments and good luck with your marathon this fall! Running has benefited her life in so many ways and it has fostered friendships and made her into a healthier, stronger version of herself. Team TSR will see you at the finish line! 

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