A gold medal is just the inspiration local runner Wendy Brown, 39, needed to spur her on to greater heights.
Brown, who just recently relocated to Fort St. John for work, competed at the 2011 Canadian National Masters [35 years or older] Indoor Track and Field Championships in March and took home a gold medal, smashing a record on her way.
The competition, which was held in Kamloops brought together athletes from a variety of disciplines including shot put, pentathlon, hurdles and running.
She signed up for and won, the three kilometre run after the CEO of B.C. Athletics, Rob Guy, invited her to participate in the event.
“I signed up for the three kilometre event because it was the longest distance they had,” said Brown.
She admits she had not heard about the competition, but when the invitation came to her, she couldn’t refuse.
She had been training in Fort St. John and word had somehow trickled down to the CEO about her.
“I have been running on and off since I was in high school and a while ago I read an article about the Boston Marathon …. I decided to step up my running because I wanted to run in Boston,” she said.
When she moved to Fort St. John she was then introduced to the world of indoor track and decided to continue training indoors as well as outdoors.
“I had to start doing something serious to be able to qualify for Boston, you have to enter a race registered as a qualifier for the Boston Marathon,” she said.
Brown said when she was approached by Guy her focus shifted to indoor track and field.
“I couldn’t believe I was there competing, it was a huge honour,” she said.
“I knew virtually nothing about indoor track, I just went and raced. I thought I had received a silver medal and was surprised to hear that I had won gold.” Brown also set a new record competing the run in a time of 16:56:65.
After the competition she was then approached by three other runners who suggested that she compete in the Wold Masters Athletics Championships in Sacramento California in July this year.
“It would be a huge honour to represent Canada,” she said.
She is currently working on getting a Canadian Masters Association number that will allow her to compete worldwide and is in the process of getting a passport finalized and plans to run in the 10,000 kilometre event in Sacramento.
“I prefer long distances, I have tried short sprints but prefer longer runs,” she said.
When she is running such long distances she thinks about her three children, Keona, Chenoa and Stuart.
“They are my inspiration. My kids are my drive”
Now aiming to represent Canada in Sacramento, Brown trains six days a week and plans to keep on running.
She said she was inspired to never give up by a quote above the stair well at Lakes District Secondary School which says ‘You miss 100 per cent of the shots you never take … Wayne Gretsky.
“I saw this quote when I was in a boot camp class and read it every time I ran up those stairs … it was what had pushed me to compete in Kamloops.”