DCCS Member of the Month - July, 2017 - Lauren Gabler Masterson

DC Capital Striders would like to congratulate Lauren Gabler Masterson for being nominated as the July Member of the Month!   Here is a little bit more about Lauren, congrats!

1. Tell us about yourself. Where you grew up, family, what you do?

I grew up in Toms River, NJ and lived there until I left for college at James Madison University in 2002. I'm an only child but had many pets growing up - cats, dogs, fish, and hamsters. I'm very close with my parents and talk to them almost every day. I moved to DC in 2006 and have lived in DC, Arlington, and now Alexandria, ever since.  I met my husband, Kirk, in 2013...through running, of course. We have two orange cats, Chuck and Peter, which keep us entertained when we're not running or doing yard work.  I currently work at Fannie Mae in communications and marketing. 

2. How did you get into running? 

I've been running for almost 20 years. I started running during my freshman year of high school because I didn't make the tennis team. It was devastating at the time but, in retrospect, was one of the best things that has ever happened to me!

Running did not come easy at first. I'll never forget the pain of my first run. But, like anything, after many miles and a lot of time, it came more naturally and I greatly improved in both XC and track by my senior year. I ran XC and track at JMU (go Dukes!) specializing in longer distances, like the 5k and 10k on the track.

My true long distance running career took off when I moved to DC. My first house backed up to the Glover-Archbald trail, and I've been lucky to meet and train with many runners over the years. I'm always amazed by the large DC running community and the sheer amount of running trails in the city and surrounding area - I'm thankful for it every day!  I started running marathons in 2008. I had a goal of running 50 marathons by age 50. I made it to 14 before realizing it just wasn't my thing. I transitioned to trail and ultrarunning in 2014 and never looked back!

3. Any racing accomplishments you are proud of? Work hard for?

I'd say my top racing accomplishments include winning the Loopty Loop 12 hour race in July 2017 (I ran 63 miles in just under 12 hours), coming in second at the Devil Dog 100 miler in December 2016, and qualifying for and running the Boston Marathon five times. 

I take my training pretty seriously and work hard for every race. The outcome isn't always what I want but I like the peace of mind of knowing I did everything I could to set myself up for success. I've certainly had my fair share of tears after races, but as I get older, I'm beginning to see each finish as a gift and try to learn from every race experience.

4. You co-lead a run for DC Capital Striders. Can you tell us a little more about it. 

Sure! I co-lead the DCCS Old Town fun run with Jackie Ho. We meet every Thursday at 6:45 p.m. at Pilates ProWorks (1103 Queen Street). We run between 3-5 miles and welcome all paces to join us! Hope to see you out there :)