This member has helped by volunteering at several events just recently and has an interesting running style. This week’s incredible member spotlight is on Kevin Shanholtzer:
I started running in 2013 or 2014, but thinking more 2014. I don’t recall why I agreed to start running but I was definitely instigated/influenced by a co-worker. I wasn’t really a serious runner and had no particular long-term goals though I did end up running the Freedom’s Run Marathon in 2014 and 2015. I had heard of the Steeps back then and even signed up but never participated in group runs or activities because I thought FSRC was just a loose coalition of casual runners, boy was I wrong! I continued to run off and on and did two trail marathons when I moved to Indiana for a year. One of them was the 2016 Dances with Dirt in Gnaw Bone, Indiana, which I highly recommend, definitely was my favorite run.
I stopped running in 2016 because I stopped seeing the why of it and frankly took a turn towards the sedentary lifestyle. Fortunately (haha), I got really sick this past December 21st, 2022. “Fortunately,” because I really hate being sick and the fastest way to recovery that I know of is running. After feeling like I was hit by the proverbial bus, I started running again on December 28th and could only run/walk a half mile. I went out every day that I could and built up to 2 miles run/walks. I signed up for the Steeps in January but didn’t feel up to joining any group runs. I was unable to run without some walking until March 21 when I ran 5 miles on lunch at work. Then March 23, I met up with a couple Steeps at Baker Park. Until that evening, in my mind I still thought that FSRC was a group of casual runners. That evening I ran with Mike B who was training for Boston and had my mind blown and humbled after talking to Farrah Douglas for 10 minutes. After that, my next intro to veteran Steeps was at the C&O 100 volunteer aid tent and talked to Billy Clem, Michelle Jacoby, and Jim Treece who told me they had collectively run a lot of 100 milers! What???
I have learned so much respect for FSRC which is honestly the first non-work group I have joined in my life. It is truly an honor to be able to run with the Steeps. They have so much knowledge and experience. I’m currently in the 50k training group with Michelle, participate in some group runs and will be popping in here and there in the marathon training group with Ainsley whenever I can.
I have been volunteering at events when I can because I want to give back and really appreciate what FSRC provides.
Some folks have asked me about running barefoot. I used to run barefoot in 2016 after reading about running mechanics and reading Born to Run. I’ve started running barefoot again. It just feels freeing to me.
Lastly, why do I run now? What is the point? For me it’s to stay healthy longer, I really love running and have learned that I really love running with other people and want to fill in some buckets on my list which includes a 50 and 100 mile. I’m currently planning on doing the Stone Mill 50 next year. I encourage people to join group runs, training programs, and pub runs. Compared to the solo running I used to do, it is much, much better. Today I did 10 miles on terrain that in the past would have made me quit after 6 miles and I am thankful to the coaches and other runners for keeping me going.