We asked Brenda Estlack a series of questions to learn a little more about what running means to her, why she runs, and how she balances running with life, family and work.
Read her story and her running journey in our Runners Essentials Athlete Profile.
Wilmington, NC-based local runner, long-time resident and running legend, Brenda Estlack recently qualified for and competed in the National Senior Games in Albuquerque, NM. Brenda won Gold in the National Senior Games, age 55-59 in the 1500m. 🥇 She also took home second place in the 800m for her age group. It was a big win not only for her, but also for the local Wilmington running community, who followed and cheered her from afar.
Brenda has qualified for the Boston Marathon three times,
first at the age of 56, again at the Boston Marathon in 2018 and most recently in April 2019 at the Nashville Rock n’ Roll Marathon, where she earned a 7 min PR, a BQ and first in her age group.
Aside from her own running goals, Brenda is also making a difference in the running community by motivating and being a key role model for a new generation of athletes. She works hand-in-hand with Coach Ann Marie Pierce of the Williston Trailblazers, helping to coach and inspire kids to make and keep running a part of their lifestyle.
But it's not just kids that Brenda inspires. She also represents the local Road Runners chapter of the Wilmington Road Runners Club, a non-profit member organization that promotes a healthier lifestyle through running, walking and providing opportunities for training, racing, socializing and volunteering.
Running is an integral part of Brenda's daily life. She continuously inspires all generations of athletes with her determination and positivity and reminds us that you're never too old and it's never too late to start running and to make it an enjoyable part of your life.
When Did You Start Running and Why?
I ran track in high school, back when it was yards, not meters and competed in the 440, 880, 880 Medley, Mile, and Mile Relay. After I graduated, I did not run much and played softball for several years and then switched to bodybuilding and competed for a few years in the early 1980's. It was not until 2007 that I picked up running again a the age of 47, mainly as a tribute to my brother who had passed away. I was not a distance runner and after a couple of years, joined the Wilmington Road Runners and that's when I started really working on my mileage and also kept the strength training, running 4 days a week and going to the gym a couple of times. I ran my first 13.1 at the age of 50 and then finally ran my first 26.2 6 years later at the age of 56. I find that my work hours, 7-3, work well with my training and ability to get my running in after work. I try to eat healthy, but I'm not too strict with my diet.
Why Do You Run?
Some may ask why I run, and my best answer the feeling of an accomplishment when I am done. It can sometimes be a mental battle, even getting started, but overcoming the feeling of wanting to quit and completing the goal I set for myself on each run is a win every time. I'm grateful for the ability to be able to run and being a part of the Wilmington running community and all the friends that I have made through running.
How Has Runners Essentials Helped Your Training & Racing Goals?
When Runners Daily Vitamin came out in January, I felt that at the age of 58, I needed an extra boost for my energy and help with some of the aches and pains of getting older. Since taking the vitamins, I have found that I have more energy and have been able to get through my workouts, and now at the age of 59, have exceeded some of the goals that I have set for myself. In April, I set a new PR in a marathon, followed by a 5k for an unofficial NC state record for my age group, and then finally getting a gold medal in the 1500 and silver medal in the 800 at the National Senior Games this past June in Albuquerque, NM. I'm glad that there is a vitamin out there that I feel is specific for anyone who is active and wants to continue to be so.
Thank you, Brenda, for sharing your story. Keep on moving and inspiring!
"It doesn’t matter if you’re going to go fast or go far, just go. Never trust an idea that came from sitting down. Balance can’t be all thinking and no doing." - DC Lucchesi
"Run Forever" - Art Ives
Learn more about Runners Essentials Daily Vitamin Formula, specifically targeted for runners and endurance athletes to maintain health, optimize performance and promote recovery. BSCG Certified Drug Free®. Non GMO & Gluten Free.