Attention, Burlington Marathon relay teams: Prepare to eat our dust!
That's right. Seven Days is no longer just an awesome source for Vermont news and entertainment. With the debut of our relay team at this Sunday's KeyBank Vermont City Marathon, we are now officially an unbridled athletic juggernaut. And we're gonna waste your pathetic relay team.
Our five-member squad is stacked with elite athletes who've spent months training for this awesome challenge. While the rest of you spent your winters on treadmills with TVs at some cushy, heated health club, the 7D runners were training deep in the Siberian wilderness — sawing logs, lifting bags of rocks and mushing on all fours like freakin' sled dogs.
It's that kind of intensity that's going to propel us to an easy-breezy, chest-slapping finish at Waterfront Park this Sunday. When you're done puking and nursing your sore hammys, come find us. We'll be the ones in the blue 7D T-shirts (designed by our own Don Eggert) kicking back with Gatorade martinis.
Now, let's meet the Seven Days runners.
1st Leg — Downtown (Distance: 3.1 miles)
Staff Writer Ken Picard
Staff writer Ken Picard began walking at the tender age of 1 and has been running for his life ever since. His sprinting career included several record-setting mad dashes from the Nassau County (NY) Police Department during underage drinking parties, unauthorized campfires and Halloween egging episodes (NOTE: No chickens were harmed in said egging incidents, though, sadly, one pine tree was lost in a poorly extinguished blaze.)
Ken quit the high school track team after discovering that it required actual physical exertion and moderate stretching. He then made a second attempt to resurrect his running regimen by joining Northwestern University's crew team, where he consistently arrived back at the dock dead last, the rest of the team having already returned, showered, shaved and eaten dinner. Ken expects to finish his leg of the marathon, the shortest of them all, sometime before the record lake levels subside.
2nd Leg — The Beltline (Distance: 5.8 miles)
Staff Writer Andy Bromage
Don't let this photo lull you into a false sense of complacency. When Andy's not vegging out patriotically, watching Bill O'Reilly on Fox News, he's reliving his days as a varsity cross-country runner at Kingswood-Oxford School — with light jogs on the Burlington bike path. Besides setting a slip-and-slide distance record on field day during his senior year in high school, Andy won gold at the elite and exclusive 2011 Maple Corner biathlon in Calais, VT.
3rd Leg — The South End (Distance: 6.4 miles)
Account Executive Michelle Brown
Michelle writes, "I've been running for about 4 years now. It started when some other moms at my daughter's soccer practices invited me to join them on their bi-weekly runs. I've never run competitively before, but I do coach cheerleading competitively! My proudest coaching moment was this winter watching my middle school team improve their skill and going from 3rd, to 2nd to 1st place at competitions. My oldest daughter is on that team.
I've been training hard this spring in preparation of my leg, running, rowing, biking and then seeing my physical therapist weekly. My game plan is to run, then run some more. Hopefully that will be enough! I'm looking forward to running up Battery St. to the Taiko Drummers! That should be a trip."
4th Leg — New North End (Distance: 5.4 miles)
Office Manager Cheryl Brownell
Cheryl writes, "I mean... I don't want to say I was born to run, but as my coworkers, who have seen me repeatedly trip on my way from my desk to the printer, know, I'm pretty much gonna rock this relay. My proudest running moment was when I was stretching on the sidewalk in front of my house, post-run, and some elderly gentleman pulled over to ask if I needed medical assistance. Apparently, I just emanate athleticism. "
5th Leg — The Bike Path (Distance: 5.5 miles)
Associate Publisher Colby Roberts
Colby writes, "I have never run in a race like this before. My proudest athletic accomplishments are 20 years old, so I have attached a picture from my most recent competition — a wiffle ball tournament."
See you on Race Day!