TSR Runner of the Week-BJ Erps
By: Kayla Dodd
Congratulations to TSR Runner of the Week BJ Erps! He has been on his running journey since he moved to Huntington in 2008, so for 9 years now! His first race was the Marshall Half Marathon in 2010. BJ just completed his 5th marathon on October 28th. Previously he has not been able to break the 4 hour mark on his marathon and he set a new PR for himself of 3:54:29. His current running goals consist of qualifying for the Boston Marathon in the next 2 years and then to start training for an ultra-marathon.
When asked what motivates him to run he said, “The quiet and solitude of early morning runs allow me time to think, pray, meditate and be alone with my thoughts. When running with friends I try to ask good questions, listen and hopefully be an encouragement to them.” He said that the most memorable run for him was during a 4 AM run when he was stopped by the police and questioned about a pawn shop break-in that had just occurred. “That was not cool or weird, but it was definitely memorable!”
BJ is currently working towards the Myrtle Beach Marathon in March, the Nashville Rock-n-Roll Marathon in April and possibly a WV Marathon in the fall. His dream race is the Barkley Marathons in TN, the Leadville 100 in CO, or the Boston Marathon – all of which would mean he had transformed into a very different runner than he currently is and reaching goals he has set for himself!
His favorite running/motivational quote is, “What do you have that you did not receive? If then you received it, why would you boast as though you did not?” This is found in 1 Corinthians 4:7 and reminds BJ to be thankful for every opportunity to run.
When asked his best experience from running, BJ said, “The feeling from my first marathon finish (Under Armor Baltimore Marathon in 2011) and breaking 4 hours this year are my biggest highlights!”
His favorite brand of running shoes are both Saucony’s and Hoka’s. His favorite piece of running gear is his LED clip-on safety lights. Road running before sun-up can be hazardous to your health without these things! His farthest distance he has ever ran so far is a marathon (26.2 miles).
BJ’s best advice to a beginner runner is, “Don’t try to run against anyone other than yourself.” Running has benefitted him in many ways! In addition to weight-loss and the overall health benefits, he has made some wonderful friends and has had the opportunity to be with folks from church who’ve entered races and traveled with him. He said that those weekends away are the stuff great memories are made of. Congrats on all of your running accomplishments, Team TSR will see you at the finish line.