Pacer Cathy & Pacer Hank
Pacer Hank


Where are you from?

Cedar Springs, Michigan

Current P.R.


Typical pace

6:30’s…. , steady… not much variation, ever!

Number of marathons

?? 20-30?



Favorite marathon



Running, snowshoeing, spending time in activities with my wife and daughter, travel, movies, EZ rides with my wife on our tandem beach bike. J

Favorite Running Food

Black Cherry Shot Blocks!

What are you reading now?

Born to Run, Christopher McDougal

Who do you train with?

Race team pals, local,l running club, and my treadmill!

Personal goals

Bethe best father and husband that I am able to



A quotation you like…


“Anything less than 110%  is chicken xxxx.” 

Why do you run?


Runner’s high, burn calories…  Healthy lifestyle!

Describe your best marathon memory.


2008 Bayshore.  Heading out in a pack of 6.  One woman,5 men.  Making lifelong friends with all, as we hung tough together for the first 14 at 6:30 pace.  Accelerating with Marybeth Reader and John Arsen at 14.  Rolling hard as a team, trading the lead, until John dropped at 18. Leading Marybeth from 18-22, as she struggled to hold together and keep on the 6:20 pace.  Having Marybeth send me forwar d at 22, knowing that she would set a female course record and PR for herself that day and that I was rolling hard for the final 4 miles, setting my own PR and a Master’s Course Record.  Making lifelong friends that day, folks that I continue to run and stay in contact with on a regular basis. 

Why do you pace?


The satisfaction of knowing that I am helping others to do the best that they can do.  The desire to help others reach their goals.  The emotional strength gained from being part of a team, working together towards that pace goal.

Tell us your best pacing experience.


I had never met Cory McDiarmid, or his grandfather, until7 am in the corral at the start of the 2010 Grand Rapids Marathon. Before Cory showed his stately grandfather tapped me, dressed in my pacer gear and holding the sign,  He pulled me aside and told me how Cory, a small town local police officer, had made 4 attempts to qualify for Boston.  He had failed by small margins each time. His grandfather stressed how critical it was to Cory that he complete the race in under 3:15  and qualify today.  He held me, looked deeply into my eyes and told me that it was my mission to get him through.  Cory showed up in our group 10 minutes later. I don’t think he had any idea that I was pulled aside and charged to get him through.  Cory looked nervous and edgy.  I chatted him up a bit.  He filled me in on his training. He had been smart and done his mileage, training for months and months for this race.  Cory ran smart and stayed steady with our group.  We were as large as 15, but dwindled to 3 as we entered the later miles.  Cory started to look rough around mile 20-21.  His form was not good, His reactions to communication were sluggish.  Ben and I, a fellow pacer, quietly planned how to work with him.  Cory began to drop off.  I dropped back with him and spoke,  I  talked of understanding how he felt, the knowledge to know exactly what it felt like as things were dimming and the body was not willing to hold pace and keep on.  I  then told him that I had been approached by his grandfather, that I knew how many times he had failed and how much this meant to him today.  I talked of situations that I have seen that appear to be almost miracle like, where a person has summoned his mind and the strength that brings to control his body.  I told him that if he had been honest with me regarding his training I knew that he could still make his goal.  At that point he just had to want it more than anything else. 
Cory pulled together.  We fed him some more shotblocks and kept up the positive talk.  He held his head high, picked up his pace and stayed on. We finished together, making his qualifying time.  He hugged and thanked me.

I didn’t see Cory again until2011 Patriots Day morning.  Yes, we ran into each other outside of the buses in Hopkinton.  He looked me in the eyes and smiled.  Told me he wouldn’t have been there if not for my help at the marathon n Grand Rapids.  As a pacer, I couldn’t have wished to hear anything else.

Why should someone run in your pace group?


Experience, comraderie, and a good time!

Any tips for runners about to join your group?


Hydrate, take gu’s, stay steady.  Commit your mind to your goal!

Anything else you’d like to share?

Run for health, Run for fun.  Train smart, race with your heart, mind and body!


What philanthropic activities do you have?

Former Board member, West Michigan Chapter of Juvenile Diabetes Foundation, Fundraiser, Pine Ridge Bible Camp, Treasurer, Pine Lake Improvement Association.


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